Consumed by coverage of the 4 November presidential election, U.S. mainstream media ignored a key Israeli military attack on a Hamas target that some Palestinians claim marked the effective end of the ceasefire between the two sides and set the stage for the current round of bloodletting.
While the major U.S. news wire Associated Press reported that the attack, in which six members of Hamas’ military wing were killed by Israeli ground forces, threatened the ceasefire, its report was carried by only a handful of small newspapers around the country.
The 4 November raid–and the escalation that followed–also went unreported by the major U.S. network and cable television news programs, according to a search of the Nexis database for all English-language news coverage between 4 to 7 November.
In fact, Lobe and Gharib tell us, “the military action, which was followed up by an aerial attack that killed at least one other Palestinian, appears to have dealt a fatal blow to the Egyptian-mediated ceasefire that had taken effect.” In a reversal of mandatory corporate media terminology, we even read that “in retaliation for the attack, Hamas launched some 35 Qassam rockets into Israeli territory 5 November which, in turn, provoked Israel.”
The whole thing is in some ways strikingly similar to U.S. media mistreatment of the genesis of another recent major Israeli invasion, that of Lebanon; read the FAIR Media Advisory: “Down the Memory Hole: Israeli Contribution to Conflict Is Forgotten by Leading Papers” (7/28/06).