Image Credit: Fadi Whadi / Reuters

Western Media Have Gone to Great Lengths to Justify Israeli Atrocities

On Saturday November 18, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that investigations showed that Hamas probably had no knowledge of the festival taking place on October 7, and that Israeli helicopters were responsible for killing numerous festival attendees. 

As such, the stories of 40 beheaded babies, the number of 1,400 civilians and other lies that were so quickly spread across mainstream Western media have been proven to be Israeli fabrications, adding to a countless list.

But in spite of these horrible errors, mainstream media has not ceased from continually skewing the debate towards blindly spreading Israeli narratives,while highly scrutinizing and conducting long and often outdated investigations of Palestinian evidenced information.

Legitimizing the Bombing of Hospitals

Right before the strike that killed over 500 individuals in the al-Ahli hospital, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) titled a post on X (previously Twitter) “Does Hamas build tunnels under hospitals and schools?”, effectively justifying the Israeli bombing of hospitals.

As Israeli forces denied their involvement in the bombing and claimed it might have been an intentional or unintentional rocket fired by Hamas, mainstream media proactively opened a debate on who is responsible for the strike.

Many of these debates omitted crucial context regarding the hospital’s targetting, including evidence where Israeli officials stated that they are generally aware of which structures they are targeting in Gaza, and evidence that the occupation has previously committed war crimes and lied about it, before tacitly admitting to these actions after media coverage has died down months later.

Most prominently, the occupation did so with the murder of Palestinian Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, claiming she was not killed by occupation forces, before later admitting to the crime months later. This crime, alongside many others, remains unpunished by the international community.

Mainstream media went lengths in obfuscating the reality of the situation on the ground. A few days after the strike, Israeli forces explicitly targeted the Al-Shifa and the Indonesian hospital, all while bombing numerous schools, refugee camps, UN centers where people were taking shelters, journalist complexes and countless residential areas. 

Such attacks however have evaded the attention of mainstream media who have only recently begun somewhat providing a more nuanced coverage after the degree of violations became undeniable.

In a video that developed to become a social media mockery, the Cable News Network (CNN) was escorted by Israeli forces inside the Gazan Al Rantisi hospital. During the footage, an Israeli officer points to a “terrorist list” which, upon close inspection, appears to be only a calendar with the days of the week in Arabic. 

The blatant fabrication involved in the footage has reportedly even been criticized by Israeli soldiers themselves.

CNN admitted that foreign “journalists” accompanying the Israeli military should get permission from Israeli forces before publishing their material, a blatant disregard of journalistic ethics whereby one of the parties being covered obtains some say in the content prior to publication.

Attempting to Justify a 99.5 percent Civilian Kill Rate

Israeli forces have claimed that they have killed 60 Hamas operatives in an attempt to show that their attacks are “successfully protecting Israeli civilians from terrorist attacks,” a narrative that mainstream Western media was glad to propagate.

Such justification is completely invalidated when one takes into account that so far, over 12,000 individuals were killed in Gaza, excluding those still under the rubble and unaccounted for in official sources. More than a third of those killed are children, with children around 5 years old being one of the groups most killed in the ongoing genocide. 

In addition, at least 197 Palestinians were killed in the West Bank, a region of occupied Palestine where Hamas does not operate.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog attempted to justify the killing of Palestinian children by claiming that a copy of Hitler’s Mein Kampf was found in a “children’s living room”, while French-Israeli lawyer Nili Kupfer-Naouri claimed that there are no innocent civilians in Gaza as children’s education is “anti-Semitic.”

It is worth mentioning that the copy of Mein Kampf was criticized as looking clean and brand new considering Gaza has been suffering from continuous airstrikes for over a month.

The Myth of Self-Defense

While many Western governments were quick to announce that Israel has the “right to self-defense”, international law explicitly mentions that an occupier, in this case Israel, doesn’t have a right to defend itself from the population it’s occupying.

Politicians and “journalists” alike were quick to ask their interviewees whether they condemn Hamas and whether they think Israel has the right to defend itself in robotic fashions, in blatant disregard of the reality of the conflict.

The Myth of Impartiality

A journalist’s job is to report the truth, rather than the opinions of both sides of the conflict. Many platforms have championed themselves for being “impartial” because they reported what both Israeli and Palestinian sources had to say on a certain issue, while hosting spokespersons from different backgrounds.

However, true investigative work is not a matter of hosting all sides equitably, it’s about reporting what is actually taking place on the ground: in this case, it is indisputably that of an occupying force and its political allies committing a genocide against Palestinian people.