On April 1, 2010, HuffPost featured the following headline near the top of its front page:
Let's pause and think about that for a moment. "Israeli Warplanes Reportedly Bomb Gaza Strip." Why would Israel bomb the Gaza Strip? Were its pilots were bored with training missions, and flew over the border in order to drop bombs on innocent Muslim civilians? In fact, why would Israel "bomb" the Gaza Strip at all?
Let's go one step further back: Does Israel even "bomb" anyone? "Bombing" means raining down gravity-directed ordinance into the proximity of a target, like what the U.S. and its allies did to Dresden, Germany, in 1945, to break the enemy's will. Here's what a "bombing" looks like --- from the air...
... and on the ground:
So, is this what Israel did to Gaza today? Did Israel really "bomb" it, as HuffPost claims?
Of course not.
And HuffPost's own story page, to which its inflammatory headline led, confirmed this fact:
Israeli warplanes carried out at least five missile attacks on the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip on Friday, Palestinian witnesses said.
Read the whole story: Reuters
Hm. So now Israel didn't "bomb" the Gaza Strip, it launched "missile attacks"? Well, that sounds a lot more precise, doesn't it? But why would it do so? HuffPost provides no answer --- even though common journalistic practice allows aggregators like HuffPost to cite far more than just the one sentence it did, here.
So why wouldn't HuffPost do that, to put the story into context (especially given its inflammatory "bombing" headline)? We have our own opinion, but to get confirmation, perhaps one day someone in a position of influence will ask HuffPost to explain itself.
Let's see what the Reuters story had to say:
Israeli planes and helicopters mounted at least seven missile attacks on the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip on Friday, destroying what a military spokesman described as Palestinian munitions sites.
Four air strikes blew up two caravans near the town of Khan Younis, witnesses and Hamas officials said. There were no casualties.
A fifth missile hit a cheese factory in Gaza City, setting it on fire, witnesses and Hamas officials said. Hospital officials said two children were slightly wounded by flying debris.
Helicopters struck twice in the central refugee camp of Nusseirat, destroying a metal foundry. There were no casualties.
An Israeli military spokesman confirmed the attacks, saying they had targeted two weapons-manufacturing plants and two arms caches.
The air strikes were Israel's response to a Palestinian short-range rocket that was fired across the border into the Jewish state on Thursday, the spokesman said.
Wow. So at the end of the day, what do we have here?
- A headline that is a lie, which HuffPost's own source story confirms.
- A bombing that didn't occur.
- Israel responding to ongoing rocket attacks from the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, and most acutely, the one that was fired on the day it retaliated.
- A multi-pronged military response to terrorist targets, located within densely populated civilian areas, of such precision that not a single person was killed.
- Another instance in HuffPost's long history of anti-Semitic, anti-Israel bias, in which it ignored the facts, context and history, in order to create a headline that would unfairly incite hatred of Israel and Jews.
- A continuation of exactly the kind of reckless incitement of hatred that is documented in our special report on the matter:
The Stimulus And The (Approved) Response: Anti-Semitism and Israel-Hatred on Huffington Post
Actually, this is almost a carbon copy of an earlier incident we documented, in which HuffPost did practically the same thing, with the same effect:
4/6/07: Decontextualized headline re IDF retaliation against terrorists incites Israel- and Jew-hate, blood libels, etc.
So what kinds of user comments were incited by this deliberate provocation --- and which HuffPost reviewed, approved and decided to publish on this story thread? Need you ask?
As you review these comments, which HuffPost admits only appeared after it reviewed, approved, and decided to publish them, ask yourself: Are you looking at an American-owned and operated website --- or one that caters to radical Islamist propagandists? (Note: An estimated 135,000 of HuffPost's monthly visitors originate from Iran and Pakistan; see Section 4.3 here.)
Here's a sampling of the comments that were incited by HuffPost's headline manipulation. Note that users with more than 20 "fans" are bolded, indicating that (a) they have been users for some time, and (b) they are not the hit-and-run "trolls" that HuffPost likes to blame for "offensive comments" that "accidentally slipped through":
Let's start with "DocStrangelove," the reincarnation of the infamous "BlueStateMan," one of HuffPost's most protected, longest-term, most-egregious violators of its comment policies, and a notorious threatener and anti-Israel propagandist (see summary here, and detailed analysis here):
DocStrangelove 1160 fans permalink
[...] “Zionism”.. after it was HIJACKED by a bunch of messianic troglodytes, took it WAY too far & started to liken this “sovereignty” to a blood feud… the (deserved) CHIP on Israels shoulder after the Holocaust seemed to have GRAFTED itself to the mindset of these hardliners.. things that need to be EXCISED from the soul of Israel once & for all. [...] These new settlements.. in fact ALL SETTLEMENTS need to GO… & UNTIL then, ALL financial support the United States affords Israel must STOP… & we should BOYCOTT their products as well.
Reply Posted 08:19 PM on 4/01/2010
Now, on to the more pedestrian anti-Israel propagandists and conspiracy theorists who could not help but have been incited by HuffPost's acts and omissions:
GCitizen 9 fans permalink
F16 warplanes and top of the line helicopters supplied by the US to Israel are being used against largely unarmed millions of Palestinians entrapped in an open prison. what a disgrace to humanity Israel and its supporters are! [...] the Israelis are the occupiers, the most weaponized, and the ones who are committing what many human right organizations have considered as war crimes.
Posted 08:18 PM on 4/01/2010
porsche996 194 fans permalink
Israel uses military aircraft and ordnance against defenseless civilians in the crowded densely populated Gaza strip and the Main is the Pope's crazy obstinate denials?
Posted 08:15 PM on 4/01/2010
LeeCalif 94 fans permalink
US - Stop funding these Israeli barbarians NOW !!!!!!!!!
Posted 07:51 PM on 4/01/2010
atlantis1star 10 fans permalink
I am so fed up with Israel. Now dropping indiscriminate bombs on woman, children and families. If Israel wants to commit human rights abuses, let them do it on their own dime and not on ours. [...] American aid was never meant to build settlements in Palestine or drop cluster bombs on woman and children.
Posted 07:34 PM on 4/01/2010
Visit the story page for yourself to see the latest comments that were incited by this deliberate provocation, and which HuffPost reviewed, approved and decided to publish, here.
Want to speak out on this?
If you share our concerns about how HuffPost incites and then tolerates this kind of raw hatred, propaganda and conspiracy theories against Israel and Jews, and would like to express your views directly to its management, here's how.