Between Morality and Bias

Hamas aims to kill as many Israeli civilians as possible, but its rockets kill many more “Palestinians” than Jews because many of those rockets—in this case 680—misfire and explode inside Gaza. The death and destruction caused is, of course, usually blamed on Israel.

In the 2021 May violence started by terror entity Hamas in Gaza, in the 11 days of fighting between Israel and terror entity Hamas, around 4,360 rockets and mortar bombs were fired at Israel. Of those, 3,573 penetrated Israeli airspace, 280 landed in the Mediterranean, and a significant 680 fell short and landed in Gaza.

Of the rockets headed for Israel, about 1,963 were ignored by Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system after calculations showed they would miss populated and other sensitive areas, 1,450 were judged to be a threat and were intercepted by Iron Dome, and about 160 were missed by Iron Dome and hit protected areas. Nine Israelis were killed as a direct result of mortar or rocket attacks, indicating how seriously Israelis take civil defense.

Of the 4,360 Hamas rockets fired at Israel, one exploded in Beit Hanoun in Gaza killing six Palestinian children and two adults. Also on May 10, a Hamas rocket landed in Jabalya in northern Gaza which killed eight Palestinians, including two children.

Thus, in just two days, Hamas killed 16 “Palestinians” with its errant rockets. The Israeli Terrorism and Information figures put that number at 21. With just these figures, terror entity Hamas themselves caused the deaths of around a quarter of the civilian Arab deaths in Gaza.

With two million civilians— 60 percent of whom are children — packed into densely occupied Gaza, and given the Hamas strategy of using them as cannon fodder for air attacks, any Israeli airstrike would be expected inadvertently to kill thousands.

Of the 234 “Palestinians” killed in the violence, nearly half (around 140 terrorist combatants) of those were terror entity Hamas or Palestinian Islamic Jihad combatants who were identified by name. Of the 95 of those killed who had no terrorist affiliation, 52 were children and 38 were women (and remembering that Hamas rocket misfires have accounted for one quarter of those deaths already…)..

To this one needs to add that buildings that collapse due to nearby explosions cause extra deaths. This is significant because many buildings in Gaza may have been undermined by Hamas tunneling, adding to their inability to withstand shaking and increasing the Palestinian civilian death toll. In an least one case an Israeli bomb targeting a Hamas tunnel is believed to have caused such a collapse of an adjacent building, causing over 20 deaths.

By international standards, this equates roughly to a little less than one-to-one ratio of civilian to combatant deaths and is testimony to pin-point Israeli accuracy in attacking Hamas terror assets. By contrast, in Afghanistan, Iraq or other theatres of war for example, British, American and other armies’ airstrikes usually account for a ratio of about three civilians killed for every one combatant.

The figures above are testimony to Israel’s very effective civil defense system that uses early warning sirens and app alerts to notify people of rockets heading their way so they can rush to a shelter.

By that same token, in insisting on attacking Israel, terror entity Hamas has not used even one dollar of the large amounts of foreign aid it has received ($2.7 billion pledged in 2014…..) to build, as Israel has, civil defenses to protect its population. Instead, it has devoted almost all its efforts to attacking Israel with weapons such as rockets, mortars, incendiary balloons, snipers, and anti-tank rockets.

For the average media consumer far-removed from the core of the fighting, numbers are the only statistic which informs their opinion and support for a terrorist entity such as Hamas in Gaza and the violence-prone PLO/PA in Ramallah which politicised a rent dispute along nationalist lines (which led to the fighting in the first place…..) . And numbers were at the heart of much of the coverage and commentary surrounding the fighting in May between Hamas and Israel. One example was the front page New York Times story and photo spread about the number of (mostly) Palestinian children killed. The images were accompanied by charges that because more Palestinians died, Israel must have used disproportionate force and therefore committed a war crime.

“By this logic, Nazi Germany was the victim in WWII and the US the unlawful aggressor, because 14 times more Germans than Americans were killed”( Dr Alex Safian, June 27, 2021). Or Great Britain, where 7.5 times more Japanese than British people were killed in that same war.

Israel does not need to wait for the western and Arab media to correct the record about the casualty rate in Gaza, May 2021.

Those same outlets know full well the unthinkable and unprecedented lengths to which Israel goes, leagues more than by any other armed forces in the world, to avoid the loss of enemy civilian life, including issuing residents of targeted buildings with evacuation warnings by text, phone calls or “knock on the roof” harmless missile strikes to tell anyone in there to move out of the target zone.

But the systematic media-driven lie that mainly “Palestinian” children were killed by the Israelis in May 2021 persists in order to confirm an age-old hate and bias against a moral, legitimate sovereign state for the basest of reasons. The deliberate propagation of a false and distorted equivalence between a terror organization blatantly violating humanitarian norms and a democratic state legitimately defending itself against terror became the magnet for honest, well-meaning, moral people willfully misled by agenda-driven media into a wave of anti-Israel condemnation.

And, in English and Hebrew, there’s a word for that.

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