Monday, April 28, 2008

Reuters: Birds gotta peck, spuds gotta cool

Let's begin with the BBC on what may be the crucial details:
The Israeli army said it had "targeted from the air two Palestinian gunmen who were approaching the soldiers while carrying large bags on their backs.

"A big explosion erupted on the scene... indicating the presence of bombs and explosives in the gunmen's bags," the army said.

"As a result of this big explosion, extensive damage was caused to a house that was near the gunmen and uninvolved civilians were hit."
And now Reuters. This is an amazing demonstration of biased journalism. It builds one paragraph after another until finally reaching the sentimental novelistic dribblings about chickens and potatoes.
Israeli fire hit a house in the Gaza Strip on Monday while a family was eating breakfast, killing six Palestinians, including four children and their mother, residents and medical workers said.

Israel challenged the account, describing the deaths as tragic and saying they occurred when an aircraft fired at two militants carrying bags filled with munitions that detonated and destroyed the home in the northern Gaza town of Beit Hanoun.

Local residents said no militants were killed in the explosion.
So much for that. That's the first of four paragraphs supporting the Palestinian point of view:
"They have wiped out my family," said the children's father, Ahmed Abu Meateq, blaming Israeli forces and weeping as the bodies were prepared for burial.

The carnage cast another shadow over Egyptian efforts to forge a ceasefire between Israel and militant groups and end violence threatening U.S.-brokered Palestinian statehood talks.

"This aggression does not serve efforts being exerted to achieve calm, and it obstructs the peace process," Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, referring to Israel's military activities, said in a statement carried by WAFA news agency.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak, without giving details of the raid in Beit Hanoun, said Hamas Islamists controlling the Gaza Strip bore overall responsibility for casualties among non-combatants because gunmen "operated among civilians."
Not scare-quotes exactly, but a similar effect. Even the supposed presentation of the Israeli side contributes to the overall pro-Palestinian thrust of the proceedings.
Medical officials and residents of Beit Hanoun, an area where militants frequently fire rockets at Israel, said an Israeli projectile smashed through the ceiling of a one-storey house where a family was having breakfast.

They said four children -- siblings whose ages ranged from 1-1/2 to 5 years old -- and their mother were killed in the house during what the Israeli military described as an operation against rocket launching crews and snipers.

"They were eating and they were hit," a neighbor said at the site, where chickens pecked at a bloodstained floor and cooked potatoes grew cold in a pot. [...]
After all those gestures meant to suggest journalistic balance, let's just lurch into sob-mode. Pass the kleenex. See EOZ for more on this event.

Crossposted on Soccer Dad

No comments: