Israeli Defense Forces Launch YouTube Channel
10:06 AM, Dec 30, 2008 • By BILL ROGGIO
In an effort to combat skewed media reports on the current fighting in Gaza, the Israeli Defense Forces launched a YouTube channel. The IDF has video of airstrikes on smuggling tunnels and rocket launch sites, the movement of humanitarian aid into Gaza, the deployment of IDF tanks to the Gaza region, and other such videos. Eight videos total have been uploaded over the post 24 hours.
The IDF is targeting the blogosphere and anyone else willing to watch the videos. "The blogosphere and new media are another war zone," IDF Foreign Press Branch head Major Avital Leibovich told the Jerusalem Post. "We have to be relevant there."
The videos show something that is rarely reported in the media. The Israeli strikes are conducted in the heart of built up areas. One video shows a strike on about one dozen Hamas fighters as they are loading Grad rockets into the back of a truck in the middle of a densely packed neighborhood. Another video shows an airstrike on a weapons storage depot that clearly is in a residential area (videos are posted below).
Of the estimated 375 Palestinians killed, only 60 are reported to be civilians. The Israeli strikes are remarkably accurate and are causing a relatively low degree of civilian deaths despite airstrikes being launched in built-up, urban areas.
Compare this with Hamas rocket and mortar attacks, or previous suicide attacks when the Palestinians terror groups could pull these off inside Israel. Hamas and others have clearly targeted civilians; the attacks are aimed at civilians in the heart of cities and villages. Yet the reporting invariably hints that the Israeli attacks are indiscriminate while the Palestinian attacks are a response to Israeli aggression and part of the "cycle of violence."
It certainly isn't shocking to see that there is a double standard when the media report on the Israeli attacks in Gaza. Perhaps the IDF YouTube channel may help narrow this wide gap in reportage on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.