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Friday, March 15, 2013

Of course Hamas killed that baby

Here's a devastating piece by Harvard Professor Alan Dershowitz talking about the child of a BBC reporter in Gaza who was - surprise - killed by a Hamas terrorist's rocket.
Of course the baby was killed by Hamas. He would have been killed by Hamas even if the missile that ended his life had been fired by Israel. Hamas is totally and wholly responsible for this death, as it is responsible for every civilian death in Gaza and in Israel. It is Hamas that always begins the battle by firing rockets at Israeli civilians. Generally, Israel does not respond. When it does, its rockets occasionally kill Palestinian civilians. That's because Hamas wants Palestinians civilians, especially babies, to be killed by Israelis rockets. They want Palestinian babies to be killed precisely so that they can display the kind of photographs that were shown around the world: a grieving father holding his dead baby, presumably killed by an Israeli rocket. For years, I have called this Hamas' "dead baby strategy." The recent United Nations finding simply confirms the reality of this cynical strategy.

The errant rocket that killed Omar Misharawi was fired by Hamas terrorists from a densely populated civilian area adjacent to the home of the BBC reporter Jihad Misharawi. Hamas selects such locations for firing its rockets precisely so that Israel will respond by firing into civilian areas and killing Palestinian civilians. They regard such dead civilians as "shahids," or martyrs for the cause. It is better for Hamas' publicity campaign if the rocket that kills the Palestinian baby was fired by the Israeli Defense Forces, but even if the rocket was fired by Hamas terrorists, Hamas will claim, as they do regarding this death, that the lethal rocket was fired by Israel. Often the evidence is inconclusive, though the forensic evidence in this case points clearly to a Hamas rocket.
The important point is that it doesn't really matter who actually fired the rocket that killed the baby. The baby was killed by Hamas as part of a calculated strategy designed to point the emotional finger of moral blame at the IDF for doing what every democracy would do: namely, defend its civilians from rocket attacks by targeting those who are firing the rockets, even if they are firing them from civilian areas.

...

Babies like Omar Misharawi will continue to die in Gaza and in Israel so long as the world media continues to serve as facilitators of Hamas' dead baby strategy. Every time a picture of a dead Palestinian baby being held by his grieving parents appears on television or on the front pages of newspapers around the world, Hamas wins. And when Hamas wins, they continue with their deadly strategy. The media, therefore, is complicit in the death of Omar Misharawi as it is in the deaths of other civilians who are victims of Hamas' dead baby strategy. Pictures of dead babies in the arms of their grieving fathers are irresistible to the media. That won't change.
What should change is the caption. Every time a dead Palestinian baby is shown, the caption should explain the strategy that led to his or her death: namely that Hamas deliberately fires its rockets from areas in which babies live and into which Israel must fire if it is to stop its own babies from being killed. 
Read it all.

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