Most of the media are reporting the UN — which means UNRWA — account of the killing of a Palestinian truck driver verbatim. For example, NPR this morning reported that
The UN, in the midst of all this, has suspended all aid operations in Gaza after one of its drivers was killed by Israeli tank fire…They also reported Red Cross (in this case, Palestinian Red Crescent) claims that an aid convoy yesterday “came under Israeli tank fire”.
To be fair, the story in other places uses the phrase “aid agencies say”, but there is no indication that there is the slightest bit of doubt about the details. As I wrote yesterday (“Did Hamas shoot Palestinian truckers?“), two Palestinians who were wounded in the incident have gunshot — not shrapnel — wounds, and the Israeli medic who evacuated them says that they were shot by a Hamas sniper.
Incidents like this are very bad for Israel, which is doing its utmost to hit only Hamas targets in order to prevent a premature end to the operation that will result in an imposed settlement — like UN Resolution 1701 which ended the 2006 Lebanon war — which will gain Hamas legitimacy and leave it with the ability to rearm.
Hamas has an endgame strategy to emerge from this conflict with the ability to rebuild, with Israel’s reputation further blackened, and with ‘street cred’ from successfully holding off the IDF. Since it can’t defeat Israel militarily, it is doing its best to produce “Israeli atrocities” by any means possible to create an excuse for the anti-Israel forces in the UN to shut down the war at the most advantageous point.
One thing that the media do not dwell upon is that the “aid agencies” here are pro-Hamas. UNRWA — the UN agency created solely to keep Palestinian ‘refugees’ on the dole and prevent their resettlement — is staffed almost entirely by Palestinians, and in Gaza is under the thumb of Hamas. The Palestinian Red Crescent, too, is far from impartial, and has been the subject of Israeli complaints that ambulances are used to transport terrorists, etc. Yet over and over they repeat their claims without caveats.
Worse, sometimes we even see media reports like this one, also from NPR:
Friday’s deaths in Gaza pushed the Palestinian death toll to more than 750 in the two-week-old conflict, with at least half of them civilians, according to Gaza health officials.
“Gaza health officials”? And whom do these ‘officials’ work for?
The above article is also interesting for it’s title: “Despite U.N. Truce Call, Israel Vows To Fight On”. Well, yes, but they don’t mention that Hamas also has vowed to fight on.
Israeli authorities have so far been silent about the aid convoy accusation. My feeling is that they are being very careful not to issue a premature apology — as they did in the case of the faked killing of Muhammad al-Dura — and are presently researching the facts about the incident.
Israel-haters are certain that it is the IDF’s goal to hurt Palestinian civilians as much as possible, but the fact is that such a policy is not only immoral — and understood as such by the IDF and Israeli leadership — but very much against Israeli interests.
Therefore I suggest that we should take the flood of atrocity reports with more than one grain of salt.