Israeli military ‘tricks’ Hamas with vague media statement on Gaza offensive

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A vague statement triggered a frenzied speculation that Israel had launched the invasion of Gaza Tanah – a most feared scenario that would mark bloody escalation to the operation this week against Hamas militants. Some journalists were even told, the attack began.

An Israeli artillery unit fires toward targets in Gaza Strip, at the Israeli Gaza border, Saturday, May 15, 2021.
An Israeli artillery unit fires toward targets in Gaza Strip, at the Israeli Gaza border, Saturday, May 15, 2021.

Beginning Friday, right after midnight, the Israeli military issued an unpleasant statement for the media: “Air Forces and IDF Land are currently attacking in the Gaza Strip.”

A vague statement triggered a frenzied speculation that Israel had launched the invasion of Gaza Tanah – a most feared scenario that would mark bloody escalation to the operation this week against Hamas militants. Some journalists were even told, the attack began.

A few hours later, the military issued “clarification.” There is no troops in Gaza. But at that time, some of the main news outlets were mistakenly reported the ongoing ground offensive.

While the army tried to play the incident as an Israeli military commentator who misunderstood said the media had been used as part of the tricky of the trick to captivate Hamas guerrillas into deadly traps that might have killed dozens of fighters.

“They don’t lie,” said Heller, veteran military correspondent on TV Channel 13 Israel. “It is manipulation. It was smart and it worked.”

This is how to open:

Thursday night, after a few days after air strikes, Israel announced it called thousands of reserves and gathered troops along the border in front of the possible land invasion. In other signs of escalation, Israel began firing artillery shells on the border on targets in Gaza, according to residents.

In the previous round of battle, land attacks have resulted in extensive destruction in Gaza and severe victims on both sides.

Which sets the stage for fraud late at night. According to Heller, Israel began fighting over troops along the border in what appeared to be the final preparation for the invasion. Then the announcement came to the media, it was issued simultaneously in Hebrew and Arabic on Twitter. There, following a warning at the main outlet, including the New York Times, that the invasion is underway.

The Israeli movement sent Hamas fighters to rush to a defensive position on the underground tunnel network known as “Metro,” according to Heller and other Israeli reports.

Israel called at 160 fighter planes and bombarded the tunnel for 40 minutes, the military said. Heller said that it was his understanding that a number of militants had been killed, even though he said it was impossible to say.

“What we saw tonight was a very sophisticated operation that had a media aspect for it,” Heller said.

Hamas has not commented on the incident, and it is impossible to confirm the Israeli report.

Heller said the Israeli veteran correspondent, who had a close relationship with the military and in many cases had served themselves, knew that it was impossible for Israel to send troops across the enemy line at this stage. Heller and other military correspondents even issued a statement on Twitter convincing publicly restless that there was no land operation.

Associated Press, based on army statement analysis, telephone calls to military officials, and reporting on land in Gaza, concluded that there was no porridge and did not report there.

But others say the military has misled them or even lied when asked to clarify the initial statement and use the word “in.” Some feel foreign media have turned into accessories.

Felicia Schwartz, the correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, said he warned the news about ground offensive after receiving explicit confirmation from Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Conricus, a military spokesman.

In a statement posted on Twitter, he said Conricus “told me directly, ‘there was a land force in Gaza.” It is the basis for the first story that says so. He pulled back the statement two hours later and I changed the story to reflect it, and recorded in the text and will be repaired. ”

Speaking to reporters on Friday morning, Conricus blamed “internal miscommunication.”

“These things can sometimes occur in the middle of complex operations with many moving parts and with an unclear picture of what happened,” he said. “As soon as I understand that I have wrong information, I update people relevant to clarification.”

But some correspondents still have questions.

“If they use us, it is not acceptable. And if not, then what is the story – and why Israeli media extensively report that we are cheated?” Daniel Estrin, NPR correspondent in Jerusalem, who was also notified by the military that the invasion had begun.

The military around the world has long used fraud and deception towards their enemies. Two years ago, the Israeli military reportedly falsified an army injury at the Hizbullah missile strike place, walking as far as evacuating them in the bandage to the hospital in a helicopter.

According to the report at the time, the army conducted an injury to cheat Hezbollah to think it had caused casualties and therefore approved the ceasefire.

A statement that is misleading Friday further tense what is often the rocky relationship between IDF and foreign media.

Peter Lerner, a former military spokesman for foreign media, told the Israeli public, in general, it has long felt international media too focused on the side of the Palestinian story while minimizing Israel’s worries and suffering – and the army tends to also tend.

Lerner said he felt it was impossible for the military deliberately lying, but the damage was carried out regardless.

“Your currency is credibility,” he said. “I think this is a crisis of credibility that way is described.”

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