50 votes

Israeli strike destroys Gaza building housing offices of the Associated Press and Al Jazeera

24 comments

  1. [10]
    AugustusFerdinand
    Link
    Unjustifiably targets media building. Fully capable of defining the phrase precision strike by hitting single apartments with their weapons. And yet... I'm honestly searching for any explanation...

    “The world will know less about what is happening in Gaza because of what happened today,” AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt said in a statement. “We are shocked and horrified that the Israeli military would target and destroy the building housing AP’s bureau and other news organizations in Gaza.”

    The building that was targeted also housed the offices of Qatari-run Al-Jazeera TV, as well as residential apartments. The Israeli military said Hamas was operating inside it, a standard explanation, and it accused the militant group of using journalists as human shields. But it provided no evidence to back up the claims.

    It also was not clear why the military took down an entire building filled with media offices and residential apartments. The military has carried out scores of pinpoint airstrikes, including in the current round of fighting, that targeted single floors and even single apartments.

    In response to the strike against the building that housed media outlets, The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists demanded Israel “provide a detailed and documented justification.”

    Unjustifiably targets media building.

    Fully capable of defining the phrase precision strike by hitting single apartments with their weapons.

    And yet...

    Hours earlier, another Israeli air raid on a densely populated refugee camp killed at least 10 Palestinians from an extended family, mostly children, the deadliest single strike of the current conflict.

    As the hostilities continued, an Israeli bombardment struck a three-story house in Gaza City’s Shati refugee camp on Saturday morning, killing eight children aged 14 and under and two women from an extended family.

    Mohammed Hadidi told reporters his wife and five children had gone to celebrate the Eid al-Fitr holiday with her brother’s wife and three of their children. All were killed instantly, he said. The only known survivor from Hadidi’s family was his 5-month-old son Omar; another son, 11-year-old Yahya, was missing, he said.

    Children’s toys and a Monopoly board game could be seen among the rubble, as well as plates of uneaten food from the holiday gathering.

    I'm honestly searching for any explanation for the targeting of the media building other than the obvious reason in the article...

    “This latest attack on a building long known by Israel to house international media raises the specter that the Israel Defense Forces is deliberately targeting media facilities in order to disrupt coverage of the human suffering in Gaza,” the group’s executive director, Joel Simon, said in a statement.

    27 votes
    1. Eric_the_Cerise
      Link Parent
      I think Occam's Razor applies here. It was the obvious reason. In particular, I think Al Jazeera was the primary target. They've been pumping out a steady stream of (accurate, AFAICT)...

      searching for any explanation for the targeting of the media building other than the obvious reason

      I think Occam's Razor applies here. It was the obvious reason.

      In particular, I think Al Jazeera was the primary target. They've been pumping out a steady stream of (accurate, AFAICT) pro-Palestinian news since before the attack began, and they're funded by the same country that provides a lot of Hamas' support.

      https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/5/15/give-us-10-minutes-how-israel-bombed-gaza-media-tower

      16 votes
    2. [7]
      Nmg
      Link Parent
      If you are struggling to understand why, perhaps it is because the limited amount of english-language journalism on this. In this Israeli news clip, the military spokesperson says (around 1:50,...

      Unjustifiably targets media building.

      If you are struggling to understand why, perhaps it is because the limited amount of english-language journalism on this.

      In this Israeli news clip, the military spokesperson says (around 1:50, please excuse my semi-shoddy translation)

      Interviewer: you striked a tower that had international media offices, including american media offices, other media offices, there is international criticism, why did you do this? Was this necessary? What was the goal?
      Spokesperson: Let me first remind you, we striked the tower that held within miltary operatives from Hamas and from the Palestinian Islamic Jihad. [Some stuff I didn't get]...in this tower, there were Hamas intelligence offices...Palestinian Islamic Jihad offices. In a place that also has Hamas, also had legitimate purposes, we [?] every person located in this building, both via telephone and also via small explosions on the roof to indicate that we are going to attack. We gave them time to evacuate, and only after did we attack.
      Interviewer: [Brings up some of potential questions that might arise from the international community]... how do you explain, to Associated Press, for example, that you blew up their office?
      Spokesperson: I think the answer to this imatter is in the body of the question. Hamas is integrated within the civilian population , and within the offices of business companies, and from there they [conduct military operations?], and we aren't going to give this problem a hand....[continues speaking]

      13 votes
      1. Thrabalen
        Link Parent
        Using the rationale of "Hamas is integrated within the civilian population", they could justify glassing Gaza.

        Using the rationale of "Hamas is integrated within the civilian population", they could justify glassing Gaza.

        28 votes
      2. wycy
        Link Parent
        “There were intelligence officers there” seems like the kind of excuse that could be trotted out to justify any strike since by the nature of intelligence it’d be almost impossible to disprove.

        “There were intelligence officers there” seems like the kind of excuse that could be trotted out to justify any strike since by the nature of intelligence it’d be almost impossible to disprove.

        16 votes
      3. nukeman
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        I’m going to offer a potential alternative explanation as to why Israel isn’t offering more that boiler plate responses. Traditionally, and continuing today, intelligence sources and methods have...

        I’m going to offer a potential alternative explanation as to why Israel isn’t offering more that boiler plate responses.

        Traditionally, and continuing today, intelligence sources and methods have been considered among the most highly classified information. After all, if you figure out how an adversary is gathering intelligence, you can take countermeasures. My guess would be that Israel is being very broad in how they interpret “sources and methods”, likely because they rely heavily on informants in Gaza (who could be killed if identified) and/or because they use long-range technical surveillance (which can be defeated if more is known). In an American context, human sources are one of the main exemptions from automatic declassification. Heck, even the classification guides for intelligence topics are often classified themselves.

        Edit: Here’s a better example of a classification guide from the DNI.

        6 votes
      4. [3]
        Nmg
        Link Parent
        Update on this: A CNN interview with an Israeli english-language military spokesperson:...
        1 vote
        1. [2]
          MimicSquid
          Link Parent
          It doesn't sound like there's anything new there? They just keep saying that it was ok because Hamas had a presence in the building, no evidence, just trust them.

          It doesn't sound like there's anything new there? They just keep saying that it was ok because Hamas had a presence in the building, no evidence, just trust them.

          3 votes
          1. Nmg
            Link Parent
            Yes, the spokesperson did claim that they will release additional information, but did not say when. There was also the question of whether or not the intelligence on the building was shared with...

            Yes, the spokesperson did claim that they will release additional information, but did not say when. There was also the question of whether or not the intelligence on the building was shared with the US DoD or not.

            1 vote
    3. Eabryt
      Link Parent
      I could be wrong but I believe I read something somewhere that mentioned that building also housed major parts of Gaza's internet backbone? Would be interested to see a source on that but could...

      I could be wrong but I believe I read something somewhere that mentioned that building also housed major parts of Gaza's internet backbone?

      Would be interested to see a source on that but could provide further reasoning for why it was chosen.

      9 votes
  2. [13]
    Octofox
    Link
    This is basically late stage religion. I can't see any way this can be resolved other than letting them bomb it out until enough people learn why religious fundamentalism is bad like the west has...

    This is basically late stage religion. I can't see any way this can be resolved other than letting them bomb it out until enough people learn why religious fundamentalism is bad like the west has done.

    4 votes
    1. [10]
      spctrvl
      Link Parent
      I think it has quite a lot more to do with settler colonialism and dispossession than it does with religion. Religion is just used as a shorthand for who's colonizer and who's colonist.

      I think it has quite a lot more to do with settler colonialism and dispossession than it does with religion. Religion is just used as a shorthand for who's colonizer and who's colonist.

      21 votes
      1. [5]
        Octofox
        Link Parent
        Most places with land disputes eventually make their best efforts to coexist. Israel and Palestine will never do this because their religions both dictate that they own the land and should have...

        Most places with land disputes eventually make their best efforts to coexist. Israel and Palestine will never do this because their religions both dictate that they own the land and should have 100% control.

        8 votes
        1. spctrvl
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          Is it their religions that dictate a perpetual holy war for land, or has it been the policy of the Israeli government to displace and dispossess the Palestinians in a colonial project, from land...

          Is it their religions that dictate a perpetual holy war for land, or has it been the policy of the Israeli government to displace and dispossess the Palestinians in a colonial project, from land that the Palestinians feel they have a claim on because they lived on it? Religion is relevant, but I don't think it's the dominant reason why the conflict remains unresolved or a reason why things need remain that way. I think the reason things remain unresolved is that Israel is in a privileged diplomatic position that stops them from facing consequences for their actions and forestalls any attempts at international pressure and mediation.

          16 votes
        2. [3]
          chkiss
          Link Parent
          I'm not familiar with any part of Islam that says "they" need 100% control, can you point me in the right direction? I know the Mecca/Medina region is supposed to be reserved for Muslims. Never...

          I'm not familiar with any part of Islam that says "they" need 100% control, can you point me in the right direction? I know the Mecca/Medina region is supposed to be reserved for Muslims. Never heard someone extend that to Jerusalem, which Muslims ruled for centuries with major Jewish and Christian presences (which wouldn't be allowed in Mecca).

          4 votes
      2. [4]
        Nmg
        Link Parent
        Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip in 2005, with the hope that the international community would recognize that as an intention of goodwill. But things seemed to have gotten worse, not better,...

        Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip in 2005, with the hope that the international community would recognize that as an intention of goodwill. But things seemed to have gotten worse, not better, since then. Why do you think that is?

        2 votes
        1. [3]
          spctrvl
          Link Parent
          I would think it's because any good intentions broadcast by the withdrawal were overshadowed by the subsequent and ongoing fifteen year blockade of the Gaza Strip, as well as continued expansion...

          I would think it's because any good intentions broadcast by the withdrawal were overshadowed by the subsequent and ongoing fifteen year blockade of the Gaza Strip, as well as continued expansion of settlements in the West Bank under successive right wing governments.

          11 votes
          1. [2]
            Nmg
            Link Parent
            Withdrawing Gaza itself was a withdrawl of settlements though. I hear some people say, "If only Israel withdrew from settlements, there would be peace." The latest data point seems to indicate...

            Withdrawing Gaza itself was a withdrawl of settlements though. I hear some people say, "If only Israel withdrew from settlements, there would be peace." The latest data point seems to indicate that that's not the case.

            The blockade against Gaza was something that the PA (the officially recognized government of the Palestinian people, and the one in which Israel has established relations under the Oslo Accords), supported! In fact, they impose their own financial sanctions on the Gaza Strip.

            3 votes
            1. spctrvl
              Link Parent
              I'm not sure how much you can glean about the efficacy withdrawal from a data point of limited withdrawal of settlements from one region of disputed territory during the expansion of settlements...

              I'm not sure how much you can glean about the efficacy withdrawal from a data point of limited withdrawal of settlements from one region of disputed territory during the expansion of settlements in another. And regardless of whether the PA supports the blockade, it and the conditions it forces on the Gaza Strip clearly contributes substantially to continued conflict and radicalization in the region.

              8 votes
    2. callmedante
      Link Parent
      "The West" doesn't have it all figured out, either. Religious fundamentalism is used as justification for all sorts of legislation and action, from outlawing abortion to the bombing of clinics to...

      "The West" doesn't have it all figured out, either. Religious fundamentalism is used as justification for all sorts of legislation and action, from outlawing abortion to the bombing of clinics to stalking and killing individual providers. Yes, religious fundamentalism -- like most fundamentalism -- is bad, but don't let yourself believe a false notion that someone else has evolved into an enlightened state.

      12 votes
    3. HotPants
      Link Parent
      Really? Ireland. Yugoslavia. Rightwing extremism.

      This is basically late stage religion. I can't see any way this can be resolved other than letting them bomb it out until enough people learn why religious fundamentalism is bad like the west has done.

      Really?

      Ireland.

      Yugoslavia.

      Rightwing extremism.

      3 votes