Call things by their right names in the Gaza War
Words matter. They are powerful tools. For truth and good. Or for manipulative propaganda.
Terrorists are waging war against Israel while John Kerry and the U.N. want to stop Israel’s ability to protect and defend herself.
Hamas is waging war against Israel. But hardly anyone ever says it. Yes, Hamas is raining rockets down on Israel, but saying that without ever using the word “war” stops short of the larger truth. If you Google “Hamas and war,” you will find references to “cyber” or “psychological” warfare. But not actual warfare in the traditional sense. As Hamas has set out to do what is written in its charter – to destroy Israel and kill every last Jew – it has declared war against the State of Israel and the Jewish people.
And who is Hamas? Who is committing double war crimes by targeting Israeli civilians while using Palestinians as human shields? They’re not “militants,” which seems to be the media’s preferred term. They are sub-human barbaric terrorists. Or if the media has limited time and/or space: terrorists.
“Human shields” is also a term that stops short of being accurate. A shield is designed and constructed to protect the person behind it by withstanding battery and assault from all manner of weapons. Sturdy materials like metal, steel, wire, and cement, as well as deadly weaponry come to mind when one imagines a shield. But human beings are soft. We’re not armor. With no weapons to defend ourselves, we are fragile in the face of physical assault. Especially women and children. The people who live in Gaza are being used as sacrificial humans, their lives so completely devalued they are tossed onto the battlefield, come what may.
And while we’re at it, now might be a good time to stop using the word “Palestinian.” It’s a fabrication. I kind of like Bill Maher’s (of all people) recent description: Professional Refugees.
In addition to naming things accurately, it would also be nice if the media would stop using incomplete sentences. Such as: the tunnels were built to get around Israel’s tight security.
The tunnels were built in order to penetrate into Israel to kidnap and kill as many Israelis as possible.
Most recently we have the following unfinished opening sentence: “Israel on Friday rejected a Gaza ceasefire proposal presented by US Secretary of State John Kerry, Israeli public television said.”
The piece continued:
"The security cabinet has unanimously rejected the ceasefire proposal of Kerry, as it stands," Channel 1 said, adding ministers would keep discussing it.
Kerry met UN chief Ban Ki-moon and Egypt's foreign minister on Friday as pressure mounted for a ceasefire to end an 18-day conflict that has killed more than 800 Palestinians and 37 people on the Israeli side, 34 of them soldiers.
Israeli media reported Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government demanded the army be allowed to continue destroying tunnels used by the Palestinian group Hamas to carry out attacks inside Israel.
Kerry's proposal reportedly involved an initial truce to be followed by negotiations on a final deal by delegations from all the parties.
A senior Hamas official, Izzat al-Rishq, said on his Facebook page after the Israeli rejection that the movement was "studying the seven-day humanitarian ceasefire call," without elaborating.
Hamas, the main power in Gaza, previously rejected an initial ceasefire proposal, demanding a full settlement before it stopped shooting, but international mediation efforts have gathered pace in the past few days.
Kerry, who spent another night in Cairo reaching out by telephone to regional officials, met Ban and Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukri for around half an hour.
He later went into a one-on-one meeting with Ban, who has also been shuttling around the region.
If I may help the media with their unfinished opening sentence: Israel rejected a Gaza ceasefire proposal that would have left all remaining tunnels intact. These tunnels would continue to give terrorists pathways to penetrate into Israel in order to kidnap or kill as many Israelis as possible. In this way, Hamas would be free to continue waging war against Israel while the U.N. and other parties talked and talked about what to do next.
There. It’s not so hard. It all depends on what the goal is. Truth? Or propaganda.