Friday, January 15, 2016

15-Jan-16: A tunnel collapses in Gaza

If you trust the news reporting of Ma'an News Agency, you will believe that there was an innocent building collapse in the Gaza Strip today. If so, you will have missed the story's significance.
Hamas fighter killed in accident in southern Gaza tunnel JAN. 15, 2016 11:56 A.M. | GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- A member of Hamas' armed wing was killed by an electric shock in a tunnel near Rafah city in the southern Gaza Strip on Friday, the Gazan Ministry of Health said. Ministry spokesperson Ashraf al-Qidra said that 22-year-old Bassam Ayyoub al-Akhras, a member of the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, received the shock while working in the tunnel. He added that al-Akhras came from the al-Shabura area of Rafah.
Gaza's tunnel networks are notoriously dangerous. The Institute for Palestine Studies reported in 2012 that Hamas authorities had counted 160 deaths inside the tunnels since the Israeli blockade began in 2007, and in August 2014, al-Jazeera reported that figure to be as high as 400.
While the tunnels are used by Hamas as a source of tax revenue and inflow of weapons, they also supply highly-demanded necessities for Gaza's 1.8 million residents under the blockade, including food, medicine, as well as infrastructure materials like concrete and fuel.
Ma'an is notorious for adopting the stance of objective news reporter while sticking religiously to interpretations that advance the military and terror objectives of the two Palestinian Arab regimes (the one in Ramallah, the other in the Gaza Strip).

The dead man is a terrorist, proudly claimed as such by Hamas, as the story makes plain. Tunnel collapses are far from a rare thing. The background is entirely terrorism-linked, as a detailed Wikipedia overview ["Palestinian tunnel warfare in the Gaza Strip"] makes plain.

But not to Ma'an which pretends tunnels are for food and medicine and that's all a person needs to know. That a member of a terrorist organization, sworn to carry out acts of savagery, is down there is in Ma'an's view a matter of no concern.

Reminder: Ma'an receives millions of dollars a year from Western sources that include the governments of Denmark, Sweden and the United States, and from Catholic Relief Services, Save the Children, and other "charities".

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