Wednesday, November 08, 2023

Finally, a reporter actually reports about Hamas firing from hospitals and UNRWA schools

On Sunday, the IDF published evidence that Hamas tunnels were built during the construction of the Indonesian Hospital in Gaza.

Indonesia strongly denied the accusation.

In a rare example of real journalism, The Telegraph (paywalled) reports:

Hamas terrorists were making a “last stand” in a hospital in northern Gaza on Tuesday night in a showdown witnessed by a Telegraph reporter. 

Israeli warplanes, tanks and infantry cornered the last remains of a 1,000 strong battalion of the terrorist group’s forces holed up in the Indonesian Hospital and a nearby the northern town of Beit Hanoun.

“They talk the talk, but they don’t walk so good,” said Lieutenant Colonel Blick of the Israeli 551 Reserve Paratroop Battalion, which escorted The Telegraph to the front line on Tuesday.

Pointing to the plumes of dust rising about 2km to the south, Lt Col Blick said fewer than 100 Hamas fighters were taking shelter in the Indonesian Hospital, the last survivors of a thousand-strong unit.

“They fought when we came in but folded after a day. Their command lines were cut. Now, where you can see the dust rising, in the hospital, they are making their last stand,” he said.

One of the soldiers took reporters to see a Hamas rocket launcher, dug into the garden of a house just a few yards from a pool where children would have played. The launcher was so hidden that it would have been close to impossible to spot by drone.

Most agree that the Indonesian Hospital is empty now of patients and is simply being used by Hamas to wage war. Taking it down with an air strike to finish the fighting must surely be tempting, but the IDF knows that would hand its enemy a propaganda coup.

At one point on The Telegraph’s embed, the tempo of gun and mortar fire coming from the Indonesian Hospital increased and was answered with a massive blast from a nearby tank.

None of the soldiers flinched. They’re inured to it. “We’re making tapes so we have them to fall asleep with after the war,” joked one.

Lt Col Ido pressed home the asymmetric nature of the war, saying: “They are hiding inside schools. Just 10 minutes ago, we had a serious battle with a group of Hamas inside the school that they built tunnels in. They fill it with the IEDs. Now the leadership of this battalion is hiding inside the hospital”.

The hospital is empty, something Israeli forces have verified with drones and other “tactical measures”, he said, adding: “They are firing on us from this hospital. So I think the world should understand what we are dealing with… they are terrorists. Can you imagine the Israeli state or England or Germany putting rockets inside their cities, in the City of London?”

In this accompanying video, the reporter says that there was fire from a UNRWA school (the subtitles took out the word "UNRWA.")

Clearly, Hamas chooses schools and hospitals as covers for their tunnels - we showed evidence of a large tunnel directly underneath an UNRWA school yesterday. 

Yet hardly any reporters even consider that the tunnels are the targets as they report on Israel apparently targeting civilian buildings.

This is not just bad journalism but irresponsible journalism. If reporters did their jobs, Israel could flatten the Indonesian Hospital and newspapers would describe how Hamas cynically turned it into a military target. But because the media tries to be even-handed between a terror group and a democracy, soldiers' lives are endangered by having to exchange fire with terrorists hiding in hospitals and schools. 

The only reason Israel bombing the terror stronghold hat formerly acted as a hospital would be a "propaganda coup" is because most media aren't doing their jobs.  

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