Thursday, February 26, 2015

My letter to Al-Jazeera

To whom it may concern,

Al-Jazeera has retracted its account of the floods in Gaza. I believe I can show this retraction is unnecessary and an incomplete response to a propaganda campaign. The response makes two claims. (A) there are no dams that can be breached in southern Israel, and (B) it was an error to attribute this flood to Israeli intentions.

The journalist Richard Edmondson and the American analyst Yousef Munayyer have firmly debunked (A). Munayyer writes it is not only false, but "demonstrably false. There are MANY dams in the negev area." He includes a video showing how fast water can run in the area. Both Munayye and Edmondson note that the JNF has written about dams  as well. The Nahal Oz dam was analyzed in the April 2014 issue of Geomorphology, which found that in 2001 it had breached and flooded "roads, neighborhoods and agricultural fields." The Palestinian Twitter user "48Refugee" has noted "Israel uses rainwater reservoirs in Gaza for agriculture. During rainy season, Israel allows reservoirs to flood."

I have been able to challenge (B) with the help of the internet. The newspaper Walla! News had a Hebrew story off the AP wire, exclusively, in which they cite an Israeli army official explaining their reason for flooding Gaza. It is no longer on the main site of Walla! News but can still be read on Newshub Israel mirrored. In the final paragraph it reads "Military sources said that following the stormy weather south much water accumulated within the system and therefore it was necessary to drain them." One of the lead agitators  of this media campaign has asked the IDF spokesman to comment on this, and has seen no reply. The story has since been deleted, but Associated Press has not issued a retraction.

The people CAMERA has marshaled to dispute what they believe is anti-Semitic libel have done their best to belittle this when I've brought it to their attention, calling me "biased" and a
"bigot" who is "complicit" in helping you attack Israel. I hope you recognize these are the real
motives of these agitators, not facts. Unfortunately, what they don't know is I would be critical of this story even if it were written about Honduras.

Thank you for your time,
Lewis from Chicago

For those trying to say "Why would Israel _____?" please see this excerpt from the Noam Chomsky book Fateful Triangle:

UPDATE 2 (3/8/2015):
Here is a picture of the Israeli government widening the Beersheva river in 2004, increasing its output into Wadi Gaza:

1 comment:

  1. please post a reliable PHOTO of this Nahal Oz dam . There is none on the entire internet. There IS a reservoir . Photo shows no dam and no trenches to allow water out because it is PIPED in and PIPED out underground.