Media Advisory: Reporting Israeli Assault Through Israel’s Eyes

Much of the U.S. media coverage has been remarkably unskeptical of Israel’s account of events and their context, and has paid little regard to international law.

[My initial personal thought after reading the NYT story and other news and information sources and reviewing various videos was this: The civilian flotilla was in international waters and tried to repel boarders. And Israeli military and political commanders decided, in violation of international law, to apprehend them. I expect many of the political agendas to emerge and play out in coming days.]

Selected comments from the advisory (in full here).

  • The New York Times (6/1/10) glossed over the facts of the devastating Israeli siege of Gaza, where 1.5 million people live in extreme poverty. As (NYT) reporter Isabel Kershner wrote, “Despite sporadic rocket fire from the Palestinian territory against southern Israel, Israel says it allows enough basic supplies through border crossings to avoid any acute humanitarian crisis.” Note: U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reported (IRIN, 5/18/10):
  1. As a consequence of Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip, 98 percent of industrial operations have been shut down since 2007 and there are acute shortages of fuel, cash, cooking gas and other basic supplies …
  2. Water-related health problems are widespread in the Strip because of the blockade and Israel’s military operation in Gaza, which destroyed water and sanitation infrastructure, including reservoirs, wells, and thousands of kilometres of piping …
  3. Chronic malnutrition has risen in Gaza over the past few years to reach 10.2 percent …
  4. In Gaza, Israel’s blockade is debilitating the healthcare system, limiting medical supplies and the training of medical personnel and preventing serious medical cases from travelling outside the Strip for specialized treatment.

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