It’s the usual story: Hamas fires on Israel. Israel responds. Hamas blames Israel for hitting a civilian target. Israel insists it did not. The report is here.
The Hamas terror group on Saturday denounced as “barbaric” overnight strikes by the Israel Defense Forces — in response to rocket fire from the Gaza Strip — that it said damaged a children’s hospital in the Palestinian enclave.
While Hamas attacks only civilian targets in Israel, the IDF takes enormous pains to avoid civilian casualties. This task is made difficult because Hamas places its weapons and weapons factories among, next to, and even inside, schools, mosques, hospitals, shops, apartment houses. The Israelis do what they can to warn civilians, for example by the use of its “knock-on-the-roof” technique, which describe its practice of dropping non-explosive or low-yield devices on the roofs of targeted civilian homes so as to give the inhabitants time to flee.
But the Israeli military flatly denied hitting the hospital, and said exploding Hamas munitions may have done so.
Two versions of reality: who should we believe?
The IDF has a long record of telling the truth and when it has made a mistake in targeting it promptly owns up. In November 2019, for example, the IDF said it had mistakenly killed a Gazan family of eight when it targeted a house that it thought was empty. When the IDF “flatly denies” hitting the hospital in this latest case, it is entitled to be believed. Hamas, on the other hand, has a long record of lying, especially when it accuses Israel of war crimes as, in claiming a deliberate attack on a children’s hospital, it does here. We all remember, among its false accusations, the non-existent “massacre of 500 Palestinians” in Jenin. And then there were all the lies from Hamas about the Great March of Return, supposedly the spontaneous protest of Gazan civilians, but the protesters were paid to show up, and were led by Hamas operatives, who even supplied the marchers with rocks, Molotov cocktails, and other explosives.
Hamas, on the other hand, has a long record of lying, especially when it accuses Israel of war crimes as, in claiming a deliberate attack on a children’s hospital, it does here. We all remember, among its false accusations, the non-existent “massacre of 500 Palestinians” in Jenin, which Hamas continues to insist on even to this day. And then there have been the endless lies from Hamas about the Great March of Return, which was supposedly a series of spontaneous protests, every Friday, by Gazan civilians against the Zionist enemy. But we know now that the marchers were paid to show up at the Great March, where they were directed by Hamas operatives, who even supplied the marchers with rocks, Molotov cocktails, and other explosives to throw at Israeli soldiers across the security fence.
The IDF said it struck three Hamas targets in the predawn hours of Saturday morning, including a rocket manufacturing site, underground infrastructure and a military post, after two rockets were fired from Gaza earlier in the evening.
The Ynet news site on Saturday, citing Palestinian sources, reported that the rocket factory targeted in the strikes was a major facility for the terror group, used to improve the capabilities of its munitions.
The rocket factory was deliberately placed by Hamas in a civilian area, close to a children’s hospital, which the terror group no doubt thought would provide a kind of protection. But the IAF (Israeli Air Force) is quite precise in its targeting. In response to the two rockets Hamas fired at Israel, the IAF hit three military targets of Hamas in Gaza. It did not target, and did not hit, the hospital, but insists that secondary explosions at the rocket plant caused some damage at the hospital.
Gaza’s Hamas ruler said in a statement that the strike on the site, which was also located next door to a Pepsi factory, had damaged a nearby children’s hospital and a center for people with special needs. Medical sources in Gaza said the strikes “lightly wounded” two civilians, including a child….
Note that Hamas first stated not that the IAF (Israeli Air Force) had targeted the hospital, but only that the “strike on the site” (the rocket factory) had also “damaged a nearby children’s hospital.” Only a bit later did Hamas accuse Israel of deliberately hitting the hospital.
The very fact that no one was killed, and only two people “lightly wounded” is evidence that the hospital had not been targeted by the IAF, for if it had been, the building would have collapsed, and there would have been dozens of dead and wounded among the staff and patients. But if the target was, as the IDF insists, the rocket factory nearby, the secondary explosions from the hit on the rocket factory certainly would have been far less damaging, the result of shrapnel and other debris hitting the hospital.
What is known is this: Hamas has repeatedly targeted Israeli civilian areas with rocket fire; it did so in November, and again at the end of December. Israel responded to the latest attack, targeting a rocket factory, underground infrastructure, and a military post.
Hamas insists that Israel deliberately targeted a hospital. The Israelis “flatly denied” that, pointing out that the rocket factory had been placed by Hamas very near to the hospital, and that the minor damage done to the hospital had to have been the result of secondary explosions at the rocket plant.
With two contradictory versions, whom should we believe? Who has a reputation as a truth-teller, and who is just as consistent a teller of lies? Let’s repeat, and enlarge upon, what was posted above:
I know which version of the latest Israeli response to an attack by Hamas I believe. What about you?
Have a tip we should know? Your anonymity is NEVER compromised. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
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