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A couple of questions

This is a guest post by Paul M

A couple of questions have been percolating through my mind for the past few days. They’re addressed to the BBC particularly, but really to the media in general:

One: True to form, accusations are starting again of Israel’s “disproportionate” responses against Gaza. After enduring a growing stream of rocket fire, Israel targeted a man perhaps more responsible than any other for those attacks, using a missile strike so precise and contained that the explosion didn’t even blow out the headlights of his car. In response, Hamas declared it would “open the gates of hell” for Israel and tried to make good on its threat by unleashing 140 rockets the next day that made a million Israeli civilians into targets. Why is this not a disproportionate response? Why is this reported as an escalation — by Israel?

Two: For many years now every BBC report that mentions Israeli settlements, even quite tangentially, has carried a piece of boilerplate that says “The settlements are considered illegal under international law, though Israel disputes this.” Set aside the fact that if Israel has grounds to dispute, the law must not be quite settled. How is it that each report of a rocket fired out of Gaza City and toward Sderot, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Netivot and now also Beersheba, Kiryat Malachi, Tel Aviv & Jerusalem, does not carry a line to say that both the launch site and the choice of target are unequivocal war crimes?