Dead babies, courtesy of Israel.
This happened on Wednesday morning. 18 civilians died in their homes, in their sleep. Most were children. A 19th died at the hospital. The prime minister of Israel called it a “technical failure” and said he was sorry.
- A cemetery under construction in Beit Hanoun was opened to accommodate the victims because no other cemetery had enough land to allow them to be buried together.
Where is the coverage in our newspapers? The New York Times has not a single article about Beit Hanoun on its website, two days after the event. An archive search reveals a Reuters story saying the U.N. will soon vote to condemn the attack. The only other references are buried in articles on other subjects, such as this one in the 10th paragraph of the story “Palestinian Premier Offers to Resign for Aid.”
- More than 50 people have been killed in recent days in the Israeli artillery barrage, which aimed at preventing Palestinian militants from firing rockets at Israel. Among them were 19 killed Wednesday in the northern Gaza Strip town of Beit Hanoun when shells landed as residents were sleeping.
The Times is occupied instead with speculations about the Rumsfeld resignation, the more “realistic” policy we might expect soon in Iraq, and whether our president will continue “full speed ahead” as Dick Cheney said before the election, or brake for a turn. All this as if the U.S. is the center of God’s creation, and rumblings in James Baker’s bowels will cause bombs to fall in the Middle East, or not. Oh, there was a successful gay rally in Israel today. It’s on the front page.
I hate emotional pandering as much as anyone. I’m not going to put up every image of crying mothers or charred corpses I can find on the internet. With 650,000 dead in Iraq and counting, that would keep me pretty busy. But hey, we in America don’t even know this happened. Do you think that if it was the other way around, and 19 Israelis died in a suicide bomb attack, it would be buried in the 10th paragraph of a wire story about maneuvering within the Israeli cabinet?
Another quote I found on Palestinian Pundit sums it up, from journalist Laila el-Hadad.
- We mustn’t look the other way when blood of some becomes worth less than others.
Amen to that.
UPDATE, November 11: The U.S. has voted once again to block a Security Council resolution criticizing Israel for its violent reprisals in Gaza. I say “once again” because we all know there is a pattern. The resolution had already been modified to tone down its language, removing the word “massacre” for example. The U.S. still found it not “balanced” enough. Ten nations voted for the resolution, and four abstained. The U.S. alone was opposed, and its veto carried the day.