There is something terribly off-putting in the nature of much of the news reporting from the Gaza confrontation. Clearly the human tragedies in Gaza are painful and tragic. One has a sense in listening and watching the reports from Israel that reporters find the fact that no Israelis have—so far—been killed upsetting. While not accusing the reporters and the editors in seeking the death of anyone, there is an ugly sense that Israel is being besmirched because it successfully created a military as well as a defense system that is able to protect its citizens and that is unfair.
The obvious comparison is now finally publicly noted, that Israel protects its citizens with weapons and Hamas–like the PLO did already in Lebanon over 30 years ago–uses its citizens as human shields to protect its fighters from being attacked. The question emerges as to why the world media is incapable of considering the fact that it is also unreasonable for citizens of a modern sophisticated to spend their days and nights running in and out of bomb shelters to avoid a possible rocket attack which “might” reach a target.
The sick, cynical answer is that people suffering make better pictures and the media is still trying to sell ads; even clicks on the internet. There is also the consistent history of the media pleading the case most aggressively for those losing the most blood. Ultimately, however, the press knows, as do of the world’s political leaders, that since the miracle of the Six Day War, Israelis are expected to win wars, but the public roots for the underdog.
With the possibility of a Egyptian negotiated ceasefire now looming– as Hamas sees itself losing only more power in the current stand-off and potential elimination should Israel roll into Gaza—the ten day confrontation may well come to end. The world now can turn its attention to more traditional attacks against Jews as has occurred this weekend in France and elsewhere in Europe; attacking synagogues and old fashioned Jews. Modern anti-Israel feeling—the new anti-Semitism—seems to be tolerated there as it morphs into acceptability in places where the old anti-Semitism is still prevalent.