Friday, September 12, 2014

Justify the Unjustifiable

Decent people all over the world have been horrified by Israel's slaughter of innocents in Gaza. But indecent people, like the people at CBC, are busy trying to justify the slaughter. This article on September 12th is CBC's contribution to an Israeli campaign to try to get the world to ignore their crimes against humanity.

Hamas admits rockets were fired at Israel from Gaza neighbourhoods

Gaza's crowded urban landscape left little choice, Hamas says, adding Israel was heavy-handed

Two weeks after the end of the Gaza war, there is growing evidence that Hamas militants used residential areas as cover for launching rockets at Israel, at least at times. Even Hamas now admits "mistakes" were made.

But Hamas says it had little choice in Gaza's crowded urban landscape, took safeguards to keep people away from the fighting, and that a heavy-handed Israeli response is to blame for the deaths of hundreds of Palestinian civilians.

"Gaza, from Beit Hanoun in the north to Rafah in the south, is one uninterrupted urban chain that Israel has turned into a war zone," said Ghazi Hamad, a senior Hamas official in Gaza.

Increasingly, the discussion is not about whether the Hamas rockets were fired from civilian areas, but exactly how close they were to the actual buildings.

"The Israelis kept saying rockets were fired from schools or hospitals when in fact they were fired 200 or 300 metres  away. Still, there were some mistakes made and they were quickly dealt with," Hamad told The Associated Press, offering the first acknowledgment by a Hamas official that, in some cases, militants fired rockets from or near residential areas or civilian facilities

The questions lie at the heart of a brewing international legal confrontation: Did Hamas deliberately and systematically fire rockets at Israel from homes, hospitals and schools in the hope that Israel would be deterred from retaliating, as Israel claims? Or did Israel use force excessively, resulting in deaths among people not involved in combat operations?

Notice the first line of the article. It says evidence is mounting that Hamas used civilians "as cover". This claim by CBC is extreme. It should not have been made here. There may be evidence that Hamas operated near civilian centres, because Gaza is such a tiny over-crowded territory, but it is misleading to claim that Hamas was using civilians as "cover". This is the Israeli "human sheilds" claim in another form, which is highly questionable. CBC's wording here is TOO harsh, pointing in an unproven direction as if it is almost proven.

But when they talk about Israel, they do not want to be harsh. Look at their choice of words. Killing over 500 children is described as ":heavy-handed". How can mass murder of children be described as heavy handed"? How about "barbaric"? Or "criminal and inhumane"? Or "disgusting and brutal"? Or even "racist and ethnic cleansing"? Certainly Hamas had harsher words to describe the massacre of their children than "heavy handed". If CBC is so eager to let Hamas implicate itself in wrongdoing with its own words, then why not use Hamas words to describe Israeli wrong-doing?

Look at the use of headlines here. CBC knows the special ability of headlines to influence casual readers. Many people only read the headlines, and the messages stick. What is a "Gaza neighbourhood"? Gaza is so crowded that it is virtually impossible not to be in a Gaza neighbourhood all the time. CBC hopes its casual readers do not realize that, and so this headline will be very incriminating.

Why is the headline not something like this:


CBC made a clear choice here to use as damning a headline as possible against Hamas in support of the Israeli claims.

Then the rest of the article cites at length all kinds of evidence from Israeli sources of Hamas wrong doing, and CBC is clearly trying to influence its readers to forgive Israel for its massacre. Why does CBC not wait for the results of the UN inquiry? Because Israel needs media help now to clean its image and CBC is eager to oblige.

Notice this sub-headline in the article:

Israel disputes Palestinian casualty figures

Notice how CBC gets Hamas to incriminate itself in the major headline, and lets Israel absolve itself of guilt in the sub-headline. Is this CBC's idea of balance?

Instead of quoting the phony Israeli claim that they did not kill so many civilians, why doesn't CBC publish the name and ages of the over 500 Gaza children killed by Israel? CBC was keen to publish the names of Israelis killed. Why not publish this list?

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