Monday, August 08, 2022

An AP dispatch about the Gaza fighting this past weekend throws in a conspiracy theory:

Israel said it took action against the militant group because of concrete threats of an imminent attack, but has not provided details. Caretaker Prime Minister Yair Lapid, who is an experienced diplomat but untested in overseeing a war, unleashed the offensive less than three months before a general election in which he is campaigning to keep the job.
There two sentences meant to give the impression that the fighting wasn't necessary and the caretaker government made up an excuse to look macho and gain power in the next elections.

It is beyond absurd. An article in Al Monitor by Ben Caspit on Friday described the events leading up to the initial bombings:

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) operation came after several days of tension on the Gaza border, over the arrest of in the West bank of a senior Islamic Jihad member.

In fact, at the start of the week, Israeli security forces appeared to have scored yet another victory over terrorism with the arrest of the Islamic Jihad’s West Bank commander Bassem Saadi. The Aug. 1 raid by Israeli commandos and Shin Bet agents in the Jenin refugee camp was complex, with Israeli forces coming under brutal fire that forced them to hole up with Saadi in his home until a rescue team arrived to extricate them unharmed.

Saadi’s arrest was intended to deal a severe blow to the terrorism that swept through Israel from late March to early May, much of it carried out by Palestinians from the Jenin area. In political terms, the successful raid appeared to signal yet another upbeat week in the fortunes of Yair Lapid, the caretaker neophyte prime minister struggling to position himself as a viable alternative to “Mr. Security,” former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ahead of the Nov. 1 elections.

However, as always in Israel and the Middle East, any victory can turn into a fiasco within a heartbeat, every ending is a new beginning and nothing ever turns out the way it was meant to. The footage of Saadi being dragged on the floor by Israeli troops accompanied by an attack dog generated a widespread storm, especially in the Gaza Strip, where Islamic Jihad is headquartered....

Hours later, Israeli intelligence had already detected the deployment of Islamic Jihad teams along the Gaza border, toting anti-tank rockets and other weapons, in search of targets on the Israeli side. The head of the military’s Southern Command, Maj. Gen. Eliezer Toledano, ordered the closing of all roads along the border vulnerable to rocket attack. Residents of the kibbutzim and other communities in the area were instructed to remain indoors until further notice.

The spring terror attacks, Israel's going after Islamic Jihad leaders in Jenin to stop them, the events of this past week in the "Gaza envelope," Islamic Jihad's open threats over the past week - none of this is mentioned by AP. 

And this is just what we know. Why would Israel reveal intelligence information about an imminent attack? 

At the same time,  how does it make any sense that Israel would start a potential war for political purposes? Most citizens are reservists in the army - no one would be happy if they thought they'd have to go away from home and potentially fight for a mere political stunt. That would backfire pretty spectacularly. 

Similarly, no Israeli government would put its residents at risk from hundreds of rockets - Iron Dome is good but not perfect and people get injured scrambling for shelter even if it was perfect. Israelis wouldn't stand for that, either.

To float such an idea is to say that Israeli politicians are willing and eager to put their own constituents' lives at risk for political gain. 

Practically, Lapid's party Yesh Atid has 17 seats in the Knesset; it is part of a coalition with other parties who also want to lead the next government. Why would they go along with this conspiracy to keep Lapid in office? Why would they remain silent about it? 

AP is publishing an antisemitic conspiracy theory. 

But this is the subtle antisemitism that pervades international media coverage of Israel. If the reporter can't figure out why Israel is doing something, or is offended that Israel doesn't share enough intel, it must be that Israel is up to something underhanded. Certainly Israel cannot be telling the truth, even though lying would hurt them far more. 

And as with other cases like the death of Shireen Abu Akleh, the media does not look for any evidence that would contradict their gut feeling that the Jews are certainly the guilty party and are always up to something. The only theories worth exploring are the ones that suggest that the Jews are acting odiously. 

(h/t Irene)

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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