As hours of news broadcasts covered the racist and outrageous tweets of Roseanne Barr, 216 projectiles, rockets, and mortars fired from Gaza into Israel went relatively unreported or underreported.
As newspaper column inches and online op-ed prose sang about Kim Kardashian visiting The White House to discuss prison reform with President Donald J. Trump, where were the opinion writers deploring a terror group’s indiscriminately fired rocket landing next to a kindergarten in southern Israel?
As Facebook posts and tweet screeds showed outrage over the NFL’s policy change to allow players to protest racial and social injustices only out of site from television cameras and fans, rather than on the sideline of a game, literally swastika-emblazoned kites were set ablaze as petrol bombs and flown into fields and farms of the only Jewish majority nation in the world by Hamas and their sympathizers. As one Palestinian youth said of the swastika, “The Jews go crazy for Hitler when they see it.”
Israel is on the brink of war with Hamas. But pop culture appears to be more important than an ally nation to the United States being attacked and when Hitler is glorified by a terrorist organization who regularly calls for the nation to be wiped off the map; and who also calls for the genocide of all Jewish persons, whether Israeli or not (according to the amount of coverage by mainstream American news outlets).
Would the news producers choose the same lack of coverage if these attacks were not against Israel? Are they and the general public desensitized to terrorists attacking the only Jewish majority nation in the world? Are they/we at a point where terrorism — of any kind — is ignored or condoned? Would the narrative change if any other democratic state were attacked by 216 rockets and mortars fired from an enemy, indiscriminately, with the sole purpose to maim and kill civilian targets?
Let’s look at if the shoe were on another foot if the story would read a little different. Replace “Israel” with “The United States of America” if you’re an American. Replace “Israel” with “Canada” if you’re a Canadian. Replace “Israel” with “England,” or “France,” or “Germany,” or “Belgium,” or “Australia” based on your nationality.
Deploring terror should not be difficult. It should be universally accepted. Terror is terror. All terrorism should be condemned and every single act — whether committed in Sderot, Israel; London, England; or New York, New York, should be covered by the news.
Goodhearted Americans can both sympathize with the plight of the Palestinian people and Gazans without justifying Hamas or Islamic Jihad’s actions that incite violence and that directly led to the deaths of 60 people during the March of Return (although Hamas claimed 50 of these people to be their soldiers and Islamic Jihad claimed more to be theirs too). These goodhearted Americans can understand that many of these Palestinians live under the fist of Hamas’ control and that they aren’t free — not because of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, but because they live in a land that is governed by Hamas, a recognized Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) as defined by the U.S. State Department.
Americans are smart enough to recognize that when one of the 216 indiscriminately fired rockets hits an electric line in Israel that provides power to southern Gaza and thus knocks out electricity there — this is Hamas/Islamic Jihad’s fault and not Israel’s fault. But they only will know this if it is reported.
Americans are smart enough to recognize that when Palestinians set a pipeline on fire that brings oil into Gaza, this is not Israel’s fault. But they only will know this if it is reported.
They are smart enough to recognize that when hundreds of Palestinian demonstrators set fire to the Gazan side of the Kerem Shalom crossing, which leads to its closing, this harms Palestinian people and not Israelis. The Kerem Shalom crossing sends tons of food, humanitarian aid items, gas, oil, and more across it on a weekly basis. When Hamas closes it out, this harms Palestinians. But Americans only will know this if it is reported.
As Bret Stephens wrote in The New York Times, Gazans miseries certainly do have “Palestinian authors,” but it’s easier to simply point a finger and blame the Jews than to recognize the Palestinian-on-Palestinian crimes being committed in Gaza or the wider Arab-on-Arab crimes occurring in the region.
Jason Langsner is an active member of the American Jewish professional community. Langsner formerly ran the digital strategy for B'nai B'rith International, the Global Voice of the Jewish Community, and participated in the Israel Diplomatic Fellowship program at the Embassy of Israel in Washington, D.C. He has been featured in The Times of Israel, The Jerusalem Post, Haaretz, the Israel Video Network, Washington Jewish Week, eJewishPhilanthropy.com, and other publications. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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