Guardian grossly misleads in report on Gaza anti-terror op

The Guardian’s deceptive coverage of the IDF’s attack on Gaza terrorists early Tuesday morning, which killed three senior leaders of Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), begins in the headline:

Israel bombs Gaza Strip, killing three Islamic Jihad leaders and nine civilians

The claim, in an article by the outlet’s Jerusalem correspondent Bethan McKernan, that “nine civilians” were killed is based entirely on statements by the Hamas-controlled Gaza health ministry, and so shouldn’t be reported in the headline as if it was a fact.  Indeed, later in the article, it’s acknowledged that “an Israeli military spokesperson said the army was looking into reports of civilian deaths but had no immediate comment”.

McKernan continues:

The Israeli attack came despite a fragile ceasefire in place since a day of cross-frontier exchanges of fire last week triggered by the death on hunger strike of Khader Adnan, a prominent political figure affiliated with Islamic Jihad held in Israeli custody.

What’s referred to by McKernan as a “cross-frontier exchange of fire” was a PIJ initiated attack – an unprovoked volley of over 100 rockets fired into Israel which injured three foreign workers.  The language used by the Guardian obfuscates the vital question of who started the “exchange of fire”.

McKernan’s misinformation on the broader context behind today’s hostilities continues:

Tensions in the protracted Israeli-Palestinian conflict have soared over the past year: more than 100 Palestinians and at least 19 Israelis and foreigners have been killed in 2023 so far across Israel and the West Bank and Gaza Strip, leading to fears of wider escalation.

The Guardian fails to clarify that while all but one of the Israelis killed this year were civilians, the overwhelming majority of the Palestinians killed have either been either terrorists or males involved in violent clashes at the time of their deaths – a fact we demonstrate on this page.

The misinformation continues:

Clashes between protesters and the Israeli military also broke out in the occupied West Bank city of Nablus overnight in the aftermath of the Gaza strikes, in which six Palestinians were injured with live fire.

In fact, according to Israeli reports, violent riots – not “protests” – took place after the IDF arrested wanted terrorists.  McKernan also fails to mention that an Israeli soldier was also injured during the arrest operation, by “live fire”

The article continues:

Israeli media reported that Tuesday’s attack targeted Jihad Ghannam, Khalil al-Bahtini and Tareq Ezzedine, who were allegedly responsible for rocket fire towards Israel during a brief flare-up ignited by an Israeli raid on Jerusalem’s holy al-Aqsa mosque compound, known to Jews as the Temple Mount, during Ramadan in April.

The Israeli raid was initiated to prevent rioting during morning Ramadan prayers by Palestinians – incited by Hamas – with rocks and fireworks who had barricaded themselves in the mosque overnight.

In the penultimate paragraph of the Guardian piece, McKernan writes:

The airstrikes were similar to a three-day-long campaign in August 2022, carried out by Israel’s previous government, that killed 49 Palestinians, including 19 children, in an attack targeting top Islamic Jihad commanders.

According to an in-depth report by The Meir Amit Terrorism and Information Center, about half of the Palestinians killed in the conflict were terrorists, 10 children were killed in IDF airstrikes, and four children were killed as a result of failed [Gaza] launches.

The Guardian article ends thusly:

For more than a year, the Israeli military has been conducting near-nightly raids mainly in the cities of Nablus and Jenin which it says aim to dismantle militant networks and thwart planned attacks on Israelis. About half of the Palestinian death toll of 105 are civilians, according to rights groups and media tallies.

As we continue to demonstrate in our ongoing tally of Palestinians killed this year, “civilians” aren’t necessarily “uninvolved civilians”.  The overwhelming majority of those killed in 2023 have been either affiliated with terrorist groups or males involved in violent clashes when they died – with very few uninvolved civilians killed.

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Palestinian casualties in 2023 – the facts

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