Since March 30, there have been intermittent protests, riots, and even armed attacks at the Gaza border.
Much of the media coverage has been so poorly informed or even outright misleading, that it can be almost impossible to understand what’s really happening. Israel has, in many cases, been made out to be a violent aggressor intentionally killing peaceful protesters.
Nothing could be farther from the truth.
That’s why HonestReporting will be actively monitoring, analyzing and communicating throughout these events.
Here, for your use and information, is what we’ve seen so far:
Re-cap of events
- On April 1, we posted this explanation and analysis of the events up to that date. It was immediately clear that the “protests” also included molotov cocktails, burning tires, rock throwing, and in one case even live gunfire at the IDF. There were ongoing attempts by rioters to breach the border fence and enter Israel.
- Of the 30,000 Palestinians present, 16 were reportedly killed by IDF sniper fire. The figure later increased to 19.
- It was well known since April 1 that at least ten of the casualties had clear affiliations to terror groups, including Hamas. An analysis of open-source information from Palestinian media brought that number up to 15, and HonestReporting was the first to publish that new information on April 5.
- Another protest/riot on April 6 brought 20,000 people and new violence: including the burning of what may have been 10,000 tires, and further attempts to both attack IDF soldiers and to infiltrate Israel under the resulting smokescreen. Meanwhile, and this is not a joke, Hamas is now blaming Israel for what it claims is a “shortage” of tires in Gaza. Seriously. You couldn’t make this stuff up if you tried.
- A number of Palestinians criticized Hamas for publicizing the deaths of its members, including holding military funerals and rallies. The main objection can be summarized as follows: by revealing that so many of the deaths were actually terrorists, Hamas undermines the PR illusion that this was a “peaceful protest.”
- As of yesterday morning, Haaretz put the total number of Palestinian casualties at 29, while a slightly later AP story puts the number at 32. One casualty was Palestinian photojournalist Yaser Murtaja. Though not all the facts are known yet, this story is making some strong waves in the press. The IDF says it is investigating and that it does not deliberately target journalists. Most of the information known so far is from the Hamas controlled Gaza Ministry of Health or from Hamas itself.