CiF Watch prompts correction to Guardian claim on Gaza construction material


On Friday we commented on a report by Harriet Sherwood focusing on Egypt’s recent re-closure of Gaza’s supply tunnels (Palestinians in Gaza feel the Egypt effect as smuggling tunnels close, July 19) which included the claim that Israel forbids the passage of construction materials into Gaza “apart from small quantities destined for UN projects”.  Here’s the passage in question:

About 20,000 construction workers have been laid off as a result of the shortage of materials. Israel, which allows consumer goods to be imported into Gaza, forbids the passage of construction materials – apart from small quantities destined for UN projects – on the grounds they could be use to make weapons or arms storage depots.

We noted that Sherwood’s claim that ‘Israel only allows construction materials into Gaza which is destined for UN projects’ was not true – citing widely reported news in Dec. 2012 that Israel had expanded the legal passage of construction materials (which had previously only allowed materials for UN projects) to include such materials for private contractors, as well.

Shortly after contacting Guardian editors, the passage in question was revised to more accurately reflect Israeli policy vis-a-vis the import of construction material into Gaza. It now reads as follows:

About 20,000 construction workers have been laid off as a result of the shortage of materials. Israel, which allows consumer goods to be imported into Gaza, until recently forbade the passage of construction materialsapart from small quantities destined for UN projects – on the grounds that they could be use to make weapons or arms storage depots. Small amounts of building materials are now being let in for the private sector. 

Whilst the claim that only a “small amount” of private sector material enters Gaza is questionable considering that 20 truckloads of such material now enter the strip daily under the new policy, the revised passage is clearly an improvement over the original and we commend Guardian editors for their prompt action.

14 comments on “CiF Watch prompts correction to Guardian claim on Gaza construction material

  1. It’s the holiday season – their minds are elsewhere.

    Hold the front page! – Helen Thomas – the champion of Palestine is no more.

  2. Well done, Adam.

    If CiFWatch had been around at the time of the “Jenin Masscare” things might have been a lot different for the Guardian.

  3. The addition of the words “until recently” made no difference to the biased report’s effects on the readers. I can only believe that CIFWatch was being sarcastic when it thanked the Guardian for the “correction.”

  4. ” 20 truckloads of such material now enter the strip daily”

    Do you actually read your web sources, Adam? Your Gaza Gateway link makes it clear that the 20 truckloads is a token gesture, falling far short of what is needed.

    “After Operation Pillar of Defense, the security establishment began allowing 20 truckloads of gravel to enter the Strip per day destined for the private sector; an amount which meets just a tiny fraction of demand.”

    • Regardless of how others characterize the quantity, I wrote that “20 truckloads” of construction material flow into Gaza daily, and my link backed up that claim.

    • the 20 truckloads is a token gesture, falling far short of what is needed.
      Sadly the Israeli government didn’t take into account the quantity necessary to build fortified positions and weapon smuggling tunnels. These evil Israelis…

    • Why is Israel held responsible for delivering “adequate” goods and supplies, including gravel and concrete, to an enemy? The fact that Israel does deliver these things, as a humanitarian gesture, should not devolve into an entitlement situation.

      • Surely you jest?

        Israel is responsible for providing goods, supplies, medical equipment, electricity, fuel, etc. etc. etc.

        At which point Israel is guilty of… well, guilty of SOMETHING. It’s clause 13.54.5b of the International Law.

        • I do not “jest.” Just what exactly does clause 13.54.5b of International Law say that REQUIRES Israel to support an enemy government that has as its first and foremost goal of its charter the destruction of Israel?

          • Of course International Law “REQUIRES Israel to support an enemy government that has as its first and foremost goal of its charter the destruction of Israel”!

            International Law is very clear: Land won in a defensive war may be kept by the victor, unless the victors are Jews Zionists, in which case they have to beg the people they defeated to pretty-please take the land back, and we’ll release a few jailed murderers to sweeten the deal. That’s clause 13.54.5c.

            International Law also says that you’re allowed to defend yourself unless you’re a stinkin’ reptilian Zionist, and once Jews have been ethnically cleansed from an area, even if it’s only for 19 years, then they damned well have to STAY ethnically cleansed. Those are clauses 9.55.871.a and 123.65.478.k respectively..

            If this is all too complicated for you, then just remember the summary: You Jews, you lose. And if you don’t lose, then you’re breaking International Law. Simples!

            • What’s scary is… there really ARE people who would write a version of that. So I guess if someone’s not familiar with my posts, they might possibly be fooled (although I hope my second one was sufficiently over the top).

  5. Oh dear, Harriet.
    That’s a pretty embarrassing mistake for a correspondent based in Jerusalem and who reports mainly on I/P. Seems silly to ask, but: doesn’t she read the news?

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