Sunday, January 25, 2009

In Gaza, One Thing Remains The Same--The Other Never Was (Updated)

Ally Ally Oxen Free!

One thing has not changed in Gaza, even with the removal of Israeli troops, Hamas leaders, you know--the ones that brag how they welcome death and paradise--are still in hiding:
Hamas leaders Ismail Haniyeh and Mahmoud A-Zahar are still in hiding, a senior Egyptian official told Al-Hayyat on Friday. The two fear Israel still sees them as a target despite the conclusion of the Cast Lead operation in Gaza, he explained.

Haniyeh, A-Zahar and others went into hiding during the operation as the IDF targeted Hamas leaders and bombed hundreds of the terror group's buildings, weapons caches and tunnels. Among those killed were senior Hamas heads Nizar Rayyan and Said Siam.
No doubt they expect to be welcomed at some point by Gazans when they eventually do manage the courage to show their faces, though what Gazans will welcome them with is anybody's guess.

Meanwhile, at least one newspaper has actually described what did happen in Gaza. Ethan Bronner writes in The New York Times:
Most of Gaza, especially the capital, Gaza City, remains largely intact. This is not Grozny after the Chechen war or Dresden after World War II. The hospitals are coping; shops are reopening; traffic is becoming a problem once again. Israel has tripled the amount of goods flowing in here since before the war.
Of course, it remains to be seen whether the media in general will actually pick up on this point.

Max Boot makes some comparisons with other cases of media myopia:
This reminds me of Pristina, the capital of Kosovo, which I visited a few weeks after the end of the NATO bombing campaign in 1999. Expecting widespread devastation, I was surprised to find the town almost totally intact. Only here and there was a building in ruins — each one, it turned out, had been a Serbian military installation. I’ve had the same experience attending small demonstrations that looked like million-men rallies because news coverage focused on extreme close-ups and lacked any context. So when it comes to Gaza, and just about everything else, it is incumbent on the news media to pull back and present the bigger picture.
Don't expect a rush of reporters to give perspective to what happened in Gaza.

UPDATE: Maybe the reason Hamas is still in hiding is because it is not Israel they are afraid of:

Or maybe it's not the Arab World that the Hamas leadership is wary of--maybe they are afraid that Gazans may be on to them:

Check out Memeorandum for more on The New York Times' article.

Crossposted on Soccer Dad

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