AFP shows again why they’re the best at disseminating anti-Israeli propaganda. Power Line pulls together the story of an April 28 UAV attack on terrorists operating within a populated neighborhood in Gaza in which five civilians were tragically killed.
AFP promotes the Palestinian line, that the IDF deliberately fired on a residential house (out of sheer evilness, I suppose). In paragraph twelve, they report the IDF’s denial of responsibility:
The Israeli army later said the explosion that killed the Abu Maateq family was the result of a strike on Palestinian militants carrying explosives.
“The IDF (army) targeted from the air two Palestinian gunmen” who were approaching soldiers “while carrying large bags on their backs,” the army said in a statement after conducting an inquiry into the incident.
“A big explosion erupted on the scene, following the attack against the two, indicating the presence of bombs and explosives in the gunmen’s bags,” it said.
As always, they immediately and uncritically report a Palestinian claim that the IDF is lying:
Palestinian witnesses disputed that account, insisting that the house was more than a kilometre from the scene of the clashes and that the explosion was caused by an Israeli missile fired by an aerial drone.
No armed men were killed or wounded in the explosion at the house, and an AFP correspondent who arrived at the scene shortly after the strike saw shrapnel from an Israeli missile amid the wreckage inside.
(ASIDE: Again the AFP shows its remarkable ability rapidly to get AFP correspondents to the scene of terrorist activity. I wonder how they do that?) This short rebuttal contains at least two (probably three) lies in two sentences, as was made clear when the IDF released their video of the incident.
The video shows two attacks, one of which was next to the house in question. The first attack might have been a kilometer away, but the second is fewer than ten meters away. (Lie number one.) Both attacks cause secondary explosions, indicating the targets were carrying some kind of munitions. (Lie number two.)
The video also shows what probably happened. The second attack shows a flare extending from the explosion into the house, most likely from a rocket being set off. The majority of any shrapnel in the house, then, would be from the terrorist rocket, not the Israeli missile. Is it possible that some Israeli shrapnel found its way into the house, and the AFP stringer was qualified to identify it among the other shrapnel? Barely. (Probable lie number three.)
The bottom line is that this “massacre” (as Hamas calls it) was the direct result of Hamas’s practice of carrying out their terrorism from within residential areas. The video shows the UAV aiming several meters away from its target, so as not to fire on the house, but even with that sort of restraint on the part of the IDF, Hamas’s practice of waging war from within residential neighborhoods is inevitably going to result in tragedies. Fortunately for Hamas, they have a reliable partner in AFP for turning tragedies into propaganda.