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Monday, October 23, 2006

What is the truth in Beit Hanoun?

This morning, 7 Palestinian Arabs were killed and more injured in Beit Hanoun. The same story is covered in wildly different ways by different media.

Reading the PalArab news in Arabic, as usual, one thinks that the IDF just came to Beit Hanoun for no reason and started firing indiscriminately.

The PalArab English news admits that Israel may have been targeting some terrorists from the PRC.

Haaretz quotes PalArab residents who claim that the IDF opened fire on "militants" who were paying a condolence call. The terrorists fired initially at another family, thinking it was an internal feud, and then shot towards the IDF.

YNet quotes different PalArab sources saying that the IDF only started firing after they accidentally thought that gunfire between the two warring families were meant for them.

The Jerusalem Post says that all seven people killed were gunmen, including a senior PRC member responsible for rocket launches.

So what is the truth?

My guess is that the YNet account is closest, and that not all of the victims were from Israeli fire, based on a quote in Haaretz: "When the smoke cleared, seven Palestinians were dead and
some 20 wounded, a Palestinian Health Ministry official said, blaming IDF gunfire for all the casualties and basing his account on information from ambulance crews at the scene." The Palestinian Health Ministry is known to lie and will definitely cover up any internal PalArab fighting.

So in the end, we know that all seven of the dead will be blamed on Israel, and no one will bother finding out the truth since the propaganda is so much more valuable.

UPDATE: Haaretz now reports that witnesses said six out of the seven were armed.