(This is an expansion of a Twitter thread I wrote yesterday.)
The revelation that seemingly 53 of the dead on the Gaza border on Monday were Hamas and Islamic Jihad members doesn’t only exonerate the IDF – it shows that the IDF acted in a remarkably professional way, exactly the opposite of how they are being painted.
It’s simple math. We can assume that there were at least 48,000 non-Hamas members out of 50,000 people there. Many women and children were at the fence itself, in the front of the Hamas members who were often behind and giving instructions. As the ITIC writes:
Confirmation of Hamas involvement was ascertained by information gained by interrogating Palestinians who crossed the fence into Israeli territory. According to the interrogations, Hamas encourages and dispatches demonstrators (including children and adolescents) to the border to carry out violent acts, vandalize security installations, and even cross the fence. On the other hand, Hamas forbade its operatives to approach the fence, lest they be killed or captured by IDF forces, and therefore when they are present in the field (i.e., among the rioters) they wear civilian clothing.
Picture the scene: real Gaza civilians, including women and children, are dispatched to the fence. Some of them, in their enthusiasm, try to cut the fence itself – including a 14 year old girl who was given the wire cutters from some unknown person.
Yet nearly 90% of those killed happened to be members of the (say) 4% from terror groups, members disguised as civilians, and possibly not at the fence itself but behind the scenes, directing the action.
Behind huge walls of smoke from burning tires that were specifically set to protect the ringleaders from IDF snipers.
It is astonishing accuracy.
It shows that the Israeli snipers are incredible at identifying potentially deadly behaviors and neutralizing them, while avoiding the tens of thousands of people deployed as chaff to hide the Hamas activities.
There really were human shields in Gaza. A captured Gazan said explicitly that Hamas “tell women to go forward. They say to a woman: Go ahead, you’re a woman and the army doesn’t shoot women. They tell small children: Go ahead, the army doesn’t shoot small children.”
And somehow the IDF managed, for the most part, to avoid killing the human shields and to target the terrorists who were orchestrating what can only be considered a military operation using civilians as shields.
Israel’s critics, if they really cared about saving innocent lives, should be using the IDF as a model for all armies and police in violent riots. Given a completely unprecedented and complicated situation, the IDF was exemplary in avoiding killing innocent people.
But Israel’s critics have an agenda that rarely has anything to do with the humanitarian principles they pretend to espouse.
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