URGENT: Gaza is burning. The MSM is not just missing the story, it’s a propaganda arm of Israel as it prepared a genocide. I break stories that Israel doesn’t want anyone to know, including its own citizens.
Through all this, Tikun Olam is live-blogging the war. I bring you the latest media coverage from Israel and Palestine. You will be better informed here than almost anywhere else on the internet. Please donate now.
As of today, 2,700 Palestinians have been murdered. Over half are women and children. Over 700 were children. 1,500 Israelis were killed, of whom 30 were American. 300 of the Israeli dead were IDF soldiers.
IDF spokesliar Lt Col Peter Lerner lies like he breathes. Claims there was no IDF air strike on Gaza convoy. When video footage & eyewitness accts confirm it was an air attack, leaving 40 women & children dead #israeligenocide https://t.co/n7n6v9egv8
— Tikun Olam (@richards1052) October 15, 2023
.@LTCPeterLerner @LtColRichard you are all liars. You murdered fleeing civilians in a supposed safe corridor, then claim Hamas did it. Have you no shame? Nazis defiled the Jewish dead. You defile the Palestinian dead. May you rot in hell.
— Tikun Olam (@richards1052) October 15, 2023
Yesterday, the IAF fired a missile targeting a flatbed truck carrying nearly 100 Palestinian civilians fleeing northern Gaza. They were traveling in a refugee convoy along a route purportedly designated safe corridor. They were abandoning their homes because Israel had threatened 1-million Gazans with death unless they evacuated their homes and fled south. At least 70 died in airstrike.
In a shameless bit of pro-Israel grandstanding, CNN allowed Lt. Col. Peter Lerner to lie (see tweet above) when he claimed there had been no IAF airstrikes in the vicinity. One of Lerner’s “partners” is another IDF spokesliar, Jonathan Conricus, who told the Financial Times:
Conricus stressed that Israel’s aim was for civilians in Gaza to move south. “So it makes no sense for the IDF to have done it,” he said, referencing the explosion shown in his broadcast.
Note that he did not deny the detailed account of the tragic attacked offered by the Times. Saying “something makes no sense” in this context is far different than denying it happened, which would be an outright lie (as you’ll read below).
Supposed military weapons experts are muddying the waters, boosting claims that the explosion was caused by gas canister. This is a typical hasbara tactic when Israel faces opprobrium. Throw up as many counter arguments and theories as possible, so that the real one will be concealed behind the miasma. It won’t work this time.
All MSM coverage has been completely biased. We only hear from Israeli “experts,” IDF spokespeople, Israeli politicians. We never hear the voice of an actual Palestinian, let alone a Gazan. This is not journalism. This is cheer-leading. Israel is engaged in genocide and US media make themselves an accessory via their biased reporting. There are a few exceptions: the NY Times, a thoroughly liberal Zionist newspaper, has published a news article and op-eds which do offer a Palestinian perspective. But once this crisis ends, they will, as they have in the past revert to their pro-Israel reporting.
In fact, a knowledgeable Israeli security source confirmed to Tikun Olam that an Israeli warplane had fired the deadly missile. He claimed that the actual target was a Hamas roadblock which it had erected to prevent refugees from fleeing. But one of the videos of the incident which I’ve embedded here (below) clearly shows the view from above the street, including the flatbed truck filled with civilians. The view from above also shows the traffic ahead of it. There is no roadblock visible anywhere near the truck. Either the pilot had terrible aim and missed its target by several car lengths at least; or the Hamas roadblock part of the story is false. Despite all this, the very idea the IDF would target anything at all in a refugee corridor it itself had designated or agreed to–is reckless and indifferent at best, and a war crime at worst.
Yesterday, the Financial Times published an investigation into the bombing confirming my source’s account. It is the first detailed acccount using multiple sources to confirm its account.
This is a video shot from above the street just before and just after the bombing. The tweet below shows the view from behind the truck and the explosion.
Israel directly bombs fleeing Gazans after ordering them to flee in that particular direction!
Israel continues to bomb the very South of Gaza that it ordered 1.2 million to evacuate to!
In 7 days, Israel killed over 2215, inc. 724 kids & 458 women! 8,714 wounded
Pure carnage! pic.twitter.com/KvVqmzez5t
— Muhammad Shehada (@muhammadshehad2) October 14, 2023
Even worse, Lerner claimed that Hamas, which urged civilians not to flee the area, had mounted a false flag attack in order to sabotage the refugee flight and blame Israel. Has he no shame? Nazis defiled the Jewish dead. He defiles Palestinian dead. It is revolting.
Yet we hear nothing from the International Criminal Court, purportedly weighing whether to open a formal investigation into past Israeli war crimes. As I’ve written here before, such delay not only condones Israeli impunity, it also discredits the entire system of international law.
Israel’s “humanitarian gesture”
US national security advisor, Jake Sullivan, is proudly telling US reporters like Jake Tapper, that Israel is restoring Gaza’s water supply. Of course, he doesn’t mention that 1-million Gazans expelled from their homes have no water source at all. Not to mention that the tens of thousands whose entire neighborhoods have been obliterated by Israeli bombs, have no water as well.
This is a fake gesture. Israel deserves no credit for depriving Gaza of electricity, water, fuel, heat and food; then restoring one of these vital needs for human existence. Withholding any one of these is a war crime in itself. Restoring one while continuing to bar the others is still a war crime.
I believe that this “humanitarian gesture” is a tacit response to the convoy massacre. Israel knows that the truth, which I’m reporting here, will eventually be confirmed by MSM. It will need a store of credit bankrolled to withstand the inevitable disgust the world will feel. Turning the water on gives Israel some of that credit, which they will use to divert from accountability for these heinous murders.
An IDF history of civilian massacres
This shameful attack on a civilian target, aside from being a war crime in itself, does not stand alone. Israel in two invasions of Lebanon (2006 and 2009) engaged in similar massacres of civilians sheltering from attack. There were two massacres in the village of Qana. One in 1996 and another in 2006. The first murdered 106 and the second 28. In each case they were sheltering in a school and thought they would be safe. In similar incidents, they struck multiple van loads of families fleeing the village of Tireh after a similar IDF threat. Scores of Lebanese refugees were murdered in similar circumstances.
There is a pattern of such massacres. They are not one-off incidents, but a military tactic meant to sow fear and panic among civilians; giving the impression that nowhere can they be safe from Israel. This fear does not end when the war ends. It lingers for years, if not forever. Thus victims are cowed by Israeli crimes and deterred from supporting anything that opposes its will.
Such a pattern proves Israel’s complicity in war crimes. Another reason the ICC must act now. It must warn Israel its current acts will be considered as part of its investigation as the former chief prosecutor did during its 2014 Gaza invasion.
If Israel were a person, it would be a serial killer. We would label its behavior sociopathtic. The difference is that a serial killer kills victims one-by-one, somewhat limited in the havoc s/he can wreak. Israel is a nation is a serial killer. The death and destruction it can wreak is almost infinite. should it choose to do so.
Biden administration attacks on House Democrats criticizing Israel
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre clarifies on Israel: “There are not 2 sides here.” pic.twitter.com/kc79qQOdxN
— The Epoch Times (@EpochTimes) October 11, 2023
Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Cori Bush released a strong statement calling for a ceasefire and an end to the attack on Gaza. They were viciously attacked by Democrats allied with and funded by Aipac. Republicans put forward a censure motion against Tlaib, the first and only Palestinian American elected to the House.
We are shocked and disturbed to learn that a landlord in Chicago expressing anti-Muslim and anti-Palestinian views broke into a Muslim family’s apartment and attacked them with a knife, injuring the mother and killing her 6-year-old son, Wadea Al-Fayoume. @cairchicago will hold a… pic.twitter.com/N0ILuevq4n
— CAIR National (@CAIRNational) October 15, 2023
Following this, Biden administration spokesperson Jean-Pierre Karine lambasted them, saying their views were “repugnant” and “disgraceful.” Not to mention that the administration and others have widely equated Hamas with ISIS. It is not only an ignorant parallel since they have almost nothing in common with each other; but it incites mindless hatred against Muslims and Arabs around the world. This in turn provokes the sorts of homicidal rage exhibited by the Chicago landlord who broke into a Palestinian-American family’s apartment and stabbed the mother and her 6 year old son. He died.
Israel has just leaked the prospect of a Biden visit to Israel. A reward for what exactly? For spigots pouring water once again in Gaza? Certainly, not to prevent an Israeli ground invasion. That’s going to happen. My strong hunch is that Biden is searching for votes and believes (correctly) that wealthy pro Israel donors will open their bank accounts and pockets even wider come the 2024 election. And that promoting Israel is a election winner. Media reports say that Biden has shored up his pro-Israel support in polls. The entire approach is deeply cynical and morally repugnant, to use Karine’s phrase. Its a choice of votes over the dead.
It’s also possible, if we give Biden the benefit of the doubt, that he may pressure Netanyahu to accept a ceasefire. That’s if you believe Biden has good intentions. Another possibility is that he’s backing up the naval show of strength, in which he sent two aircraft carriers practically to Israel’s shores. He’s warning Iran and its Lebanese ally Hezbollah not to intervene on Hamas’ behalf.
However, Iran is not about to be bullied. It warned that if Israel invaded Gaza it would do so:
Iran sent a message to Israel on Saturday stressing that it does not want further escalation in the Hamas-Israel war, but that it will have to intervene if the Israeli operation in Gaza continues, two diplomatic sources with knowledge of the situation told Axios.
That sets up a scenario: if Israel attacks and Iran doesn’t act, then the latter is bluffing. If Israel attacks and Iran counterattacks then we have a regional catastrophe in the making. In that event, Biden will have to decide: does he punish Iran for its impunity and send those carrier fighter jets to bomb Iranian targets in the region (or Iran itself)? If Iran fires missiles at Israel and the president doesn’t act, then he will be bluffing.
When gaming out these scenarios, none offer constructive solutions. All end in pain for all parties. Not to mention, Biden has made a point of drawing down US forces in the region and decreasing US engagement, including the US withdrawal from Afghanistan. Sending aircraft carriers to the Mediterranean offers a recipe for embroiling us in yet another Middle East quagmire.
Demonizing Hamas: words kill
Stoking hatred against Hamas, especially while ignoring far worse Israeli crimes, incites violence against Muslims and Arabs. The murderers, as in the tragedy in Chicago, are the worst of the dregs. But their hatred does not only spring from their own minds, but from the views disseminated by national leaders and MSM reporting.
Biden is at fault. Karine is at fault. CNN is at fault. They blame one side and portray it in either demonic or hateful terms. But we must hold both sides accountable. We must make clear Palestinian civilians are not responsible and must not be singled out or targeted. To those who argue that the same holds true for the Israeli dead, I remind them that by the time this madness ends there will be five or even ten times the Israeli death toll.
After 9/11, precisely the same hatred reared its ugly head. Muslim-Americans were targeted, placed on no-fly lists, barred from entering the country, even murdered by our own armed forces. In case Americans don’t remember, I will remind them. We must never return to such mindless hatred. We must oppose it with every fiber of our being.
Washington DC rally: Say No to genocide
If you live in Washington DC I urge you to join tomorrow’s rally sponsored by Jewish Voice for Peace and If Not Now. It is an unprecedented show of unity by the American Jewish left to oppose the Gaza slaughter.
Many Jews who feel an almost patriotic devotion to Israel have refused to acknowledge Israel’s crimes there. That’s why this is a critical show of solidarity. Palestinians must not fight this battle alone. They must know that Jews in particular not only support them in tragic situations like this one; but that we also support any form of resistance they deem necessary, armed or otherwise.
Even so-called progressive media like Jewish Currents, have falsely claimed that “many” anti-Zionists feel uncomfortable attending Palestinian solidarity rallies, because they feel their pain at the loss of Israeli life is not acknowledged:
A veteran anti-Zionist activist I spoke to wondered if a “chasm” was opening up between Palestinian and Jewish activists, especially as the current moment has made visible diaspora Jews’ tangible connections to that place and those people that are, inconveniently, not just the stuff of Israeli propaganda. Over the weekend, many avowed anti-Zionist Jews found they could not join solidarity protests because they needed something the protests could not provide: a space to grieve the Israeli dead, to struggle with their own place in the coming political process.
This is a seriously misguided view. Not only is the term “many” above meaningless since it offers nothing more than the vague impression of the author; but it reinforces media attacks on the Jewish left for not sufficiently supporting Israel in the midst of a national tragedy.
Now is not the time for Jews to shy away from our Palestine brothers and sisters. For the record, I attended the local rally and did so proudly as a Jew. Unfortunately, I suspect that some were deterred from attending because of the media chorus of hatred and blame burdening Palestinians.
If our values are truly progressive, we must not allow a false sense of moral equivalence to constrain us. No matter how tragic the attack on Israel, it has inflicted suffering and slaughter orders of magnitude greater on Palestinians. If we are paralyzed by our emotional attachment to Israel, and refuse to permit the Gaza catastrophe to trouble our conscience, we betray progressive values. They don’t exist only when it’s convenient. They exist absolutely. Anything else, anything less is a betrayal.
Israeli left’s retreat into oblivion
The Israeli left too collapsed after the Rabin assassination and the subsequent First Intifada, because its political agenda focused only on Israeli interests, which it correctly viewed as based on peace. But it barely acknowledged Palestinians aside from paying lip service to them. These Israelis hardly made serious attempts at real solidarity. Everything they did, was done through an Israeli lens. That was the weakness that destroyed Israeli solidarity and the movement itself. Now, there is no Israeli left. The country is ruled by racists, genociders, and Palestine deniers. Even the so-called moderates refuse any compromise and join in the baying for blood in Gaza.
We American Jewish progressives must not make the same mistake. We must embrace our true allies and understand who is their enemy. That does not mean we cannot mourn the tragedy of all the dead, including Israels. But it does mean we must keep our “eyes on the prize and hold on.” Doing anything less is impermissible as Jews of conscience.