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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Hezbullah gets into the video business

Hezbullah has released a video that attempts to refute the IDF aerial footage of Monday evening's explosion at an ammunition dump near Tyre in southern Lebanon that was released on Tuesday evening.

Let's go to the videotape.

Here once again is the IAF video. Let's go to the videotape.

Hezbullah's video is not credible.

1. Hezbullah's video was shot in broad daylight, but the incident took place around 8:30 pm Lebanon time when it was dark outside. The IDF video was taken at night, shortly after the blast occurred.

2. The truck's position makes it clear that Hezbullah was shooting a staged event (Hezbullahwood?) after the fact. In Hezbullah's video, the truck is backed up directly to the loading dock and there are two men shoving the debris into the back of the truck. In the IDF footage, the truck is parked a little bit away and there are at least 5 men carefully carrying the disputed object and loading it onto the truck.

3. In the Hezbullah video, the men are moving quite calmly for people clearing debris from an explosion that has just occurred. Their behavior is not consistent with the reported circumstances. There is no sense of urgency. In the IDF video, you see men moving more quickly and in a less organized manner. There appears to be a sense of panic that is far more consistent with the narrative that it is taking place where an explosion has just occurred.

4. If Hezbullah's video is not the same event as the IDF video, as appears to be the case (the Hezbullah video appears to have been shot the next day), then it proves nothing about the authenticity of the IDF video. It appears that Hezbullah showed up the next day, and started clearing debris while filming themselves. This would also account for the presence of uniformed personnel of the Lebanese Army and UNIFIL in the Hezbullah video. According to early accounts from Lebanon, Hezbullah gave the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) and UNIFIL access to the explosion site only several hours after the explosion, after they had removed various items.

5. The IDF video shot shortly after the explosion shows Hezbollah cordoning off the area, loading items which seemed to include missiles onto one or more trucks, and then driving the trucks 4km away to a known Hezbollah arms depot in another village. After they were done clearing the house, they let UNIFIL and the LAF enter the area.

The mainstream media is currently reporting it as a "he said she said" story, without actually looking at the two videos, comparing them and checking with the timeline of events (most significantly, the fact that the explosion occurred at night and that the IAF video was clearly shot at night). This is from Reuters:
Lebanese Shi'ite guerrilla group Hezbollah released footage which it said showed a garage door being transported after a blast earlier this week, disputing an Israeli military claim that it could be a rocket.

The Lebanese army and Hezbollah said one person was wounded when a shell exploded in a house in the southern village of Tayr Filsi. Hezbollah said the incident occurred in the garage of one of its members.

Israel has said the blast at a Hezbollah house showed munitions were being stockpiled in violation of a truce that ended a war between the arch-enemies in 2006 and has complained to the United Nations about the incident.

The Israeli military released video footage on Tuesday it said was taken from an unmanned surveillance drone overlooking the scene shortly after the explosion. The footage was taken by an infra-red camera in black and white.

It showed frantic activity by dozens of people around the site with people loading at least one long object on a truck. The army then said two truckloads of munitions, including rockets were taken to another hiding place in a nearby village.


Footage released by Hezbollah's al-Manar television on Wednesday night showed UNIFIL peacekeepers watching as workers loaded a metal door onto a truck in daylight. Al Manar said the footage was taken in the nearby village of Deir Qanoun al-Nahr which it said was the location shown in the Israeli footage.

"Here are soldiers from UNIFIL and the Lebanese army. The place is empty except for the same truck and the alleged rocket. The surprise is that it is merely an iron garage door of the shop where the explosion occurred," a voice-over says during al-Manar's footage.
Note how Reuters treats both accounts as equally credible, and yet...

Reuters picks up on the panic in the IAF video versus the calmer atmosphere in the Hezbullah video. Which do you think is more consistent with the aftermath of an explosion?

Hezbullah claims that their video (and the IDF video) came from a location that is different than the location where both the LAF and Hezbullah said that the explosion took place. Given the sophistication of the IAF drones, why would they have filmed a different location immediately after the incident? It doesn't make sense.

Reuters notices that the Hezbullah video was shot in the daytime while the IAF video was shot at night (how could you not notice?). All the accounts from Lebanon said that the explosion occurred at night.

And finally, note how Hezbullah admits that the incident was a shell explosion in someone's garage. Do you keep unspent (mortar? tank?) shells in your garage? Do you know anyone who does?

The Hezbullah video is nothing but a group of "garbage collectors" removing detritus from the bomb site. Hezbullah calls it proof that the IDF allegations are false, and the mainstream media cannot draw the conclusions from its own stories and dutifully reports Hezbullah's account as being equally as credible as the IDF account (note that Haaretz does not do much better than Reuters).

What a sick, gutless world.


At 1:23 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

We live in a world where the lie is equal to the truth and just as accepted. What could go wrong indeed.


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