When Gaza was plunged into darkness, the western media knew who was to blame.
Besieged civilians pay the price for Israel's hardline response to rocket attacks.The Independent:
Israeli blockade forces Gaza's only power plant to shut.The Times:
Darkness falls on Gaza as Israel takes revenge for rocket attacks.
One small problem with this version of events. It wasn’t Israel that shut down Gaza’s electricity supply. It was Hamas. What Israel did was close its border crossings to all goods (eased yesterday) in response to intensive Qassam rocket attacks on the western Negev – 220 rockets fired in four days. Hamas promptly plunged Gaza into darkness, knowing that the west would uncritically swallow its claim that Israel was to blame for the distressing accounts that would follow of a humanitarian crisis. Naturally they did -- just as they continue to pretend that Hamas has only the one border with Israel through which it can obtain supplies, and therefore it is Israel which always 'blockades' it; whereas of course Gaza has a second border with Egypt through which it could certainly receive a flow of goods and fuel – especially since it continues to receive through it an uninterrupted flow of weapons with which to attack and kill innocent Israelis. Indeed, the border with Egypt means that the idea that Israel can ever 'cut off' Gaza or that it has turned it into a sealed 'prison' is entirely false.
Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, normally so slow to defend its own actions, is on this occasion clearly incandescent at the gross unfairness of the coverage and has issued this furious statement:
The supply of electricity to Gaza from the Israel and the Egyptian power grids (124 Megawatts and 17 Megawatts respectively) has continued uninterrupted. These 141 Megawatts of power represents about three quarters of Gaza's electricity needs. While the fuel supply from Israel into Gaza has indeed been reduced, due to the Hamas rocket attacks, the diversion of this fuel from domestic power generators to other uses is wholly a Hamas decision - apparently taken due to media and propaganda considerations. Noteworthy is the fact that while the Gaza population remains in the dark, the fuel generating power to the Hamas rocket manufacturing industry continues to flow unabated. The Hamas claim of humanitarian crisis in Gaza is also greatly exaggerated. There is no shortage of basic foodstuffs, and Gaza patients who need treatment in Israeli hospitals continue to travel into Israel for care.
Far from Israel imposing ‘collective punishment’ or taking ‘revenge’ upon Gaza, as the EU, UNWRA and the media have claimed, it is almost certainly the only country on the planet which continues to provide fuel and other supplies to people who use them to continue to wage war upon it.
But then, people in the west don’t know about those 220 rocket attacks in four days because the western media simply refuse to report them. Instead they only report Israel’s attempts to defend itself which are thus represented as ‘revenge’, ‘punishment’ or simple aggression. Vile. As usual.