Panorama – Gaza: Out of the Ruins


[see the rest of the clips after the jump]

The BBC’s Panorama program is typically loaded with Israeli Government propaganda such as saying Hamas provoked Israel, rather than Israel provoking Hamas; it also fails to provide adequate context about who broke the ceasefire and the illegal military occupation and blockading of Gaza, hardly an ‘impartial’ way to frame events.

The film does however contain some good sections on Israel’s criminality and the devastation in Gaza which are difficult to hide; even though Jeremy Bowen often fails to provide adequate context.

The ethnic cleansing of 1948 is mentioned, though not with that turn of phrase, and it is done so without explanation of what it means to the current massacre. The greatest failing of Bowen is captured when interviewing the film’s token Israeli mouthpiece.  The Israeli Government official calls the children of Gaza, such as sweet little Mona Al Samouni, liars, claiming they and their family members had been used as human shields; which explains all brutal deaths.  At this point any well balanced human being, not to mention journalist, would either verbally tongue-lash such rubbish, or else punch the swine in the face.

Sadly Bowen disappoints.

13 thoughts on “Panorama – Gaza: Out of the Ruins”

  1. Didn’t you hear the Hamas guy/terrorist says (on the third film) that even if israel will give him a Palestinian state in Gaza strip, the West Bank and Jerusalem he is willing to keep it quite just for 10 years.

    So What do you expect Israel to do? to jump on this “opportunity”.

    And don’t forget that in the last Palestinian elections Hamas won. It is not a minority group amongst the Palestinians, it is the group that got most of the votes on the elections.

  2. Interesting that the only time Zionists are willing to recognize Hamas as the legitimate elected government of the Palestinian people is when they want to demonize them. But then there is the habit to pick up a comment here or there (MEMRI specializes at this) in order to dismiss the larger concessions being officially made by the Hamas leadership (which has said it is willing to accept the a solution along the lines of UN 242).

  3. The Hamas fighter didn’t say he would fight after ten years he seemed surprised and unprepared for the question. Probably because the answer is so obvious, after ten years of peace it’s unlikely the Palestinians would re-ignite hostilities. Israel however refuses to give but a moments peace.

    I think in his surprise at the question he answered instead that it would be the will of the people to decide whether they fight or not. Sounds like democracy to me.

    After ten years of peace the chances of true lasting peace are much greater than a further ten years of war. Of course Israel would jump at it, if Israel wanted peace. It does not.

    The reason he was unprepared for the question is because it’s a silly question, you have to be really dumb to think a ten year peace plan and settlement on UN 242 is a plan for war.

  4. The question wasn’t dumb because it is the official policy of the Hamas to not agree to a 2 state solution, and only accept it for several years. This is what they call “Thahadya”. It is an agreement that the weak side accept for limited time so it can get stronger and start fighiting again.

    Look at the last “cease fire” between Hamas and Israel. Hamas informed Israel and Egypt in advanced that it will last for only 6 months. Because they just wanted time to arm themselevs. Now, after the last operation they are willing to cease fire for only 18 months. Why are they limiting the cease fire if not to re-arm?

    This is not true only for the Hamas. The talks between Barak and Arafat exploded in 2000 because Arafat didn’t want to sign an “End Of Conflict” agreement, he didn’t want want real peace and to put an end to the conflict, just a part time solution until they are strong enough to keep fighting.

  5. Below is the transcript from the interview.
    You can see that it was the Hamas guy who mentioned the time limitation of 10 years before the interviewer.

    Of course when asked what will happen after 10 years, he can’t bluntly say “we will keep on fighting”.

    Later the interviewer asks the Israeli minister “Hamas wants long truce…”. Which means he also understands what Hamas is offering is not peace, but truce.

    Now why should Israel give away all of its “cards” if not for at least a promise for a lasting peace?

    Q: Do you want to destroy the state of Israel?
    A: In the Qassam brigades we have flexibility in our thoughts.
    We look on the ground here. They occupied our lands. There is no doubt on this point and all the world knows these facts.

    Q: So if you had a state, Gaza stript, West Bank, Jerusalem, then you put down your gun?
    A: We want to live in peace here.
    Just give us Gaza and the West Bank, open the crossing points, let this siege go far away, OK?
    And in this case we are going to live in peace let’s say for 10 years.

  6. Now why should Israel give away all of its “cards” if not for at least a promise for a lasting peace?

    Good question. And you expect Hamas to give away all its cards without a promise of ANYTHING?

  7. AP: ‘The leader of Hamas said Monday that his Palestinian militant group would offer Israel a 10-year “hudna,” or truce, as implicit proof of recognition of Israel if it withdrew from all lands it seized in the 1967 Middle East War.’

    ‘Mashaal used the Arabic word “hudna,” meaning truce, which is more concrete than “tahdiya” — a period of calm — which Hamas often uses to describe a simple cease-fire.’

    ‘”Hudna” implies a recognition of the other party’s existence.’

    Yes lets look at the last ceasefire between Hamas and Israel: Israel broke it on the 4th November, when Hamas tried to negotiate a new one on the 23rd of December it was rejected and on the 27th Israel escalated the situation with an afternoon massacre of non-combatant police (i.e. civilians). An escalation that had been in planning since just before the start of the ceasefire. It was Israel not Hamas that needed time to prepare for a showdown.

    Hamas asked for a renewed ceasefire based on the improvement of conditions for the people of Gaza which had gotten worse under the current agreement (purposefully worse as Israel tried to turn the people against Hamas through illegal collective punishment).

    As for the transcript he was asked if he wanted to destroy Israel and he was basically saying he recognized Israel’s existence and wants peace – only to be then asked but isn’t that a plan for war. A very silly question – Israel is being offered peace and is rejecting it for war. It seems Israel is scared of peace. It’s also worth noting he was not a leader or representative of the organization as Bowen notes they wouldn’t meet him for fear of Israeli targeted assassination.

  8. a reply to m.idrees:

    you ask: And you expect Hamas to give away all its cards without a promise of ANYTHING?

    But even when he was offered a state in Gaza, West Bank (and Jerusalem) he agreed to put down the gun for only 10 years.
    What promise should Israel give, beside giving back all this land and signing a peace agreement, to get more than 10 years of hudna?

  9. But even when he was offered a state in Gaza, West Bank (and Jerusalem) he agreed to put down the gun for only 10 years.

    I’m sorry, when was this offer made? Weren’t you saying just a while back that Israel is not willing to put its cards on the table? And in case you weren’t aware, Hamas has repeatedly made clear that it would accept a resolution along the lines of the ’67 borders.

  10. a reply to Dave:

    It seems we have a “reading comprehension” problem. I saw the video and wrote down the questions and answers.

    When asked if he wishes to destroy Israel he didn’t say “no”. he just stated that they are occupied.

    When asked if he will put down his gun if he will get a state in Gaza strip, West Bank, Jerusalem he said in this case we are going to live in peace let’s say for 10 years.

    In your comment you are also quoting one other leader saying they are willing for a 10 years hudna.

    So there shouldn’t be a doubt that Hamas is not going after peace, but after a time limited cease fire.
    Personally, as an Israeli, I am not willing to give much more than a cease fire in return for a cease fire. this is btw what Israel has with Syria.

    re the recent cease fire with Hamas: it was broken by Hamas who started firing rockets after 6 months or tahadiya. it fired tens of rockets a day before israel launchthe operation.

  11. m.idrees – this offer was made by the reporter/interviewer on the third video.

    And i didn’t hear Hamas is willing to accept a 2-state solutions along the lines of the ‘67 borders. I did hear it saying they are after Haifa and Tel Aviv too. And want all the refugees to come back living inside the state of Israel.

  12. this offer was made by the reporter/interviewer on the third video.

    And the reporter was delegated by Israel to make its official offer?

    And i didn’t hear Hamas is willing to accept a 2-state solutions along the lines of the ‘67 borders.

    Perhaps you chose not to. Read the op-eds from Hamas leaders in NYT and Washington Post. And the message delivered via Jimmy Carter.

    This discussion is now over.

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