Vox’s Anti-Israel “explanation” of the current escalation
Vox is quickly becoming known for 2 things when it comes for reporting on Israel: 1) Taking the anti-Israeli position and 2) Getting their facts wrong. The latest example is their post on “Why did Israel and Hamas go to War in 2014” (Vox’s post in Italics)
“The ongoing violence between Israel and Gaza-based militant groups including Hamas, which has claimed 194 Palestinian lives and one Israeli to date, was sparked by the June 10 murder of three young Israeli students.”
This is just false. The “ongoing violence” was sparked by Hamas and other groups firing rockets into Israeli civilian centers. That was occurring on a consistent basis long before the three teens were murdered.
“Eyal Yifrah, Gilad Shaar, and Naftali Frenkel disappeared while in the West Bank, where they were studying at a yeshiva. Israel conducted a massive manhunt in the Palestinian territory, alleging they were abducted by members of Hamas. The boys were found dead on June 30th, apparently executed. Subsequent reporting suggests that Israel already knew they were dead when the search began, and used the manhunt as a cover for arresting a large number of Hamas operatives as a response to the killings.”
This is just false and slanderous. By “subsequent reports” Vox actually means the opinion of one random columnist. It’s true that there was evidence that suggested a struggle during the kidnapping and the kidnapper’s car had bullet holes and the victim’s DNA, but that isn’t conclusive proof that they were dead. Also, even if they were dead, wouldn’t it be appropriate for Israel to pursue their killers and want to recover their bodies? The suggestion that Israel needs a pretext to round up and arrest members of a known terrorist group that fires rockets at Israeli civilians on a daily basis is ridiculous.
“Israel responded to the deaths with a limited bombing campaign in Gaza against Hamas targets there, beginning the night of the boys were found. Palestinian militant groups (though, notably, not Hamas) in Gaza fired rockets into Israel.”
I have no idea where the conclusion that Hamas was not among the groups firing rockets at this point comes from. Hamas has consistently fired rockets for years, even unveiling a statue in March to celebrate their attacks on Israeli civilians.
“Then, on July 2, a 16-year-old Palestinian named Muhammed Abu Khdeir was found dead by Israeli authorities near his Jerusalem home, apparently burned to death. Police arrested six Israelis for Khdeir’s murder, telling reporters that the killing has been “nationalistic.” In simpler terms, that it was a revenge killings by Jewish extremists for the murders of the three Israeli boys.
Buzzfeed’s Sheera Frenkel reports that the alleged perpetrators were part of a racist Israeli soccer gang, La Familia. This followed a string of violence against Palestinians by settlers and other Israelis, within a climate of anti-Palestinian sentiment and some inflammatory statements by right-wing Israeli politicians, all of which had been inflamed further by Israeli national outrage over the murders of the three Israeli students.”
It’s convenient to skip over the distinction that Israeli authorities condemned the act and automatically arrested the murderers, while Hamas is actively celebrating the Palestinians that killed the 3 innocent teens. Also, I like how Vox emphasizes a few extreme Israeli politicians that no one pays attention to while ignoring that almost the entire Palestinian leadership was justifying attacks on Israeli civilians and promoting anti-Israeli sentiment.
“By July 11th, 100 Palestinians had been killed by about 1000 Israeli airstrikes. Roughly 700 rockets had been fired, making this easily the most significant escalation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since the 2012 Gaza war. By July 14th, the total casualties had exceeded the 2012 conflict.”
This is the second time in the post that the author chose to produce a body count. He doesn’t mention that many of those individuals are Hamas terrorists. Also, Israel takes extraordinary and almost unheard of measures to try to warn innocent Palestinians, while Hamas openly admits to targeting civilians and then encourages the use of Palestinian women and children as human shields for their members and their rockets. In general, the argument that casualty rates tell us anything useful about the conflict is nonsensical. One side wants to kill innocent people, the other side wants to protect them.
This is just a small sample of the anti-Israeli and anti-reality nonsense that has been promoted by Vox and several other outlets during the recent escalation.