The bombing of the al-Ghoul house in Rafah
August 5, 2014 by Thomas Wictor
On August 3, 2014, the Israeli Defense Forces bombed the al-Ghoul house in Rafah, Gaza. We’re told that ten people were killed. In response to this bombing, journalist Asmaa al-Ghoul has written “Never Ask Me About Peace Again,” a deeply dishonest attempt to mislead the world into thinking that Israel simply murdered a harmless family for no reason. And now the global media is editing their stories to fit that narrative.
Asmaa al-Ghoul gained fame for a 2007 open letter she wrote to her uncle, a top Hamas commander. The letter was said to be “scathingly critical” of Hamas, but I’ve been unable to find the text anywhere. I even searched the title “Dear Uncle, is this the homeland we want?” in Arabic and Hebrew but got no results. By 2013 Asmaa al-Ghoul herself seemed to be backtracking on much of her criticism of Hamas. Her stated rationale was that she was getting too many death threats.
Yet she’d also said that she wasn’t afraid of death threats, even those from Uncle Hamas.
From In Your Eyes a Sandstorm: Ways of Being Palestinian, by Arthur Neslen. Page 61.
She was often held up as an example of Palestinian secular humanism, dedicated to the freedom of all, but in reality she’s virulently anti-Israel.
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Since the start of the aggression against the Gaza Strip on July 8, the forces of the Israeli occupation have directly bombed five families who were inside their homes. The targeted families were the Ghannam family in Rafah and the Kawareh and al-Hajj families in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip, the Hamad family in Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip and the al-Batsh family in Gaza City. The bombing of these homes killed 43 civilians, in addition to leaving dozens of wounded.
Most of those victims were from the Batsh family, whose home was bombed by Israeli fighter jets in the al-Shajaiya neighborhood east of Gaza City on the evening of July 12.
Palestinian Ministry of Health spokesman Ashraf al-Qadra told Al-Monitor that 17 members of the Batsh family were killed by Israeli aircraft when they were bombed in their home, adding that one family member, Zakaria al-Batsh, was wounded and in intensive care.
Like “Never Ask Me About Peace Again,” this reads like a Hamas press release. The “aggression” against the Gaza Strip? And the “occupation”? Is Ms. al-Ghoul unaware that Israel had unilaterally pulled out of Gaza by September 15, 2005? After which the Palestinians destroyed everything left behind and then complained that they had to squat in rubble.
Besides, “the occupation” is what Hamas and their sympathizers call the Israelis.
Ms. al-Ghoul didn’t tell us that the Batsh home was bombed because Tayseer al-Batsh is a Hamas operative, the chief of police.
According to Human Rights Watch, Hamas “police” are terrorists who engage in extra-judicial killings and torture. You can see photos of it for yourself. The Hamas “justice system” consists of instant murder after accusations of “collaboration.” The police allow it to happen.
But Israel is the problem?
Hamas operatives and area commanders, as well as their rocket cell members, keep one part of their home for normal family life. A second part of the home is the command center, or the start of a tunnel. Daily life and military infrastructure are totally interwoven.
The al-Ghoul family is another real piece of work. Besides Asmaa’s unnamed uncle—the top commander whose death threats didn’t worry her—there was Adnan al-Ghoul, the Deputy Commander of the Izz ad-Din al Qassam Brigades, the “armed wing” of Hamas.
Don’t all political parties in civilized societies have an armed wing?
Adnan ate an Israeli missile on October 21, 2004. The Palestinians revere him and use his likeness in their childish propaganda.
A 100 percent Palestinian-made sniper rifle! Hot corn!
Except that it’s not. It’s an Austrian Steyr HS.50 that Hamas got from Iran. Palestinians simply can’t help lying. Asmaa al-Ghoul’s “Never Ask Me About Peace Again” is full of lies.
My father’s brother, Ismail al-Ghoul, 60, was not a member of Hamas. His wife, Khadra, 62, was not a militant of Hamas. Their sons, Wael, 35, and Mohammed, 32, were not combatants for Hamas. Their daughters, Hanadi, 28, and Asmaa, 22, were not operatives for Hamas, nor were my cousin Wael’s children, Ismail, 11, Malak, 5, and baby Mustafa, only 24 days old, members of Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine or Fatah. Yet, they all died in the Israeli shelling that targeted their home at 6:20 a.m. on Sunday morning.
Did anybody say the children and baby were Hamas operatives? But here’s something interesting, Asmaa. When the story first broke, all the reports said that there were over forty people in the house at the time.
Asmaa doesn’t mention that, and now the press is fast removing this fact from articles they wrote previously. You can check yourself. I did a Google search and found the information in the meta descriptions of the articles, but it’s gone from the articles themselves.
The way Google works, the Web crawlers look for phrases that you type into the search engine. Meta descriptions—which appear under the article title in the search result—take much longer to change. So all these reports initially included the fact that there were more than forty people in the al-Ghoul house.
It’s absolutely clear that the Israelis struck the house because some Ghoul Hamas operatives were hiding there. Back to Asmaa’s article.
Their house was located in the Yibna neighborhood of the Rafah refugee camp.
This is what she calls a “refugee camp.”
Here’s a Syrian girl in a Jordanian refugee camp.
Where you think she’d prefer to live, in a tent set up on an ocean of mud or in a multistory apartment building?
Asmaa goes on.
It was one story with a roof made of thin asbestos that did not require two F-16 missiles to destroy. Would someone please inform Israel that refugee camp houses can be destroyed, and their occupants killed, with only a small bomb, and that it needn’t spend billions to blow them into oblivion?
By a “roof made with thin asbestos,” she means asbestos-cement shingles.
The roof was strong enough to hold a giant satellite dish, marked by the green arrow.
Yes, that’s a wounded child. All the kids became endangered when Hamas terrorists showed up. And guess who’s giving the Israelis intelligence on the whereabouts of Hamas and Islamic Jihad commanders? The Palestinian Authority. There’s no question. Asmaa’s Uncle Hamas killed Fatah members in his house, she said. Now Fatah is getting its revenge.
Asmaa is lying when she claims that the Israelis spent billions targeting the Ghoul house. They dropped inert precision-guided bombs, which cost much less than the $25,000 each that Israel pays for the explosive versions. You can tell the bombs were inert because there’s no fragmentation or blast damage. The houses next door are untouched. Look at the wall: No holes.
Get this through your heads: Israelis drop high-explosive bombs in urban areas only after they’ve warned everyone to leave.
Here’s the choice the Ghoul family gave the Israelis: Let the Hamas commanders live to kill more Israelis and Palestinians, or target the house and kill children. It’s called a “Hobson’s choice”: All your options are hideous. I’ve been forced into them my entire life. For this Hobson’s choice, I blame the Ghoul family.
Asmaa’s lies continue.
Distances in the small Gaza Strip have grown larger, distances and time expanding as a result of the fear and death that shrank the life expectancy of the populace.
Rafah’s Abu Yousef al-Najjar Hospital was closed after being shelled by Israeli tanks, and the Kuwaiti Hospital that we visited just a day earlier had become an alternate venue, where this freezer was the only option available.
We have no idea whose munitions hit the hospital or if it even happened. Most of Rafah is closed to the western media.
If the Israelis fired on the Abu Yousef al-Najjar Hospital, it was because Hamas used it as a combat post and/or weapons depot. The IDF doesn’t shell hospitals with staff and patients in them. That’s a pathetic Hamas fabrication.
This next passage is pure agitprop, designed to enrage the reader and inspire him or her to continue supporting Hamas’s moronic, suicidal war.
We wondered if they died in pain. What happened when the missile, carrying tons of explosives, impacted their modest house and exploded, creating air pressure so fierce that their internal organs burst? Their suffering was perhaps lessened by the fact that they were sleeping.
As I already pointed out, the Israelis used inert bombs. No explosives, no pressure wave. Being a journalist, Asmaa should’ve known this, but she gives away the game in this quote.
If it is Hamas that you hate, let me tell you that the people you are killing have nothing to do with Hamas. They are women, children, men and senior citizens whose only concern was for the war to end, so they can return to their lives and daily routines. But let me assure you that you have now created thousands — no, millions — of Hamas loyalists, for we all become Hamas if Hamas, to you, is women, children and innocent families. If Hamas, in your eyes, is ordinary civilians and families, then I am Hamas, they are Hamas and we are all Hamas.
Asmaa, you already were Hamas before you wrote your article. You have Stockholm Syndrome, and you live by the most primitive, retrograde, destructive ethos on earth, exemplified in a famous Arab proverb.
I against my brother, my brothers and I against my cousins, then my cousins and I against strangers.
Think of this and shiver: Asmaa al-Ghoul is the very best that Palestinian culture has to offer. She is the pinnacle.
NDTV filmed Hamas terrorists building a missile-launching site next to a hotel. Look at these fat slobs. They’re average citizens—who just happen to be terrorists.
Asmaa al-Ghoul wants you to believe that defending yourself against terrorism is what causes terrorism. She’s lying. The Gazans support Hamas because they hate Jews.
Unfortunately for them, these Jews are much better fighters.
You people of the South don’t know what you are doing. This country will be drenched in blood, and God only knows how it will end. It is all folly, madness, a crime against civilization! You people speak so lightly of war; you don’t know what you’re talking about. War is a terrible thing! You mistake, too, the people of the North. They are a peaceable people but an earnest people, and they will fight, too. They are not going to let this country be destroyed without a mighty effort to save it.
You are rushing into war with one of the most powerful, ingeniously mechanical, and determined people on Earth—right at your doors. You are bound to fail. Only in your spirit and determination are you prepared for war. In all else you are totally unprepared, with a bad cause to start with.
—William Tecumseh Sherman
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