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Who's to blame for the massacre at Gaza's Baptist Hospital?

October 18, 2023 at 12:08 pm

An injured Palestinian is carried away from Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital after it was hit in Gaza City, Gaza on October 18, 2023 [Ali Jadallah – Anadolu Agency]

Since Al-Ahli Baptist Church was struck yesterday evening and over 500 people were killed, social media has been abuzz with claims of who carried out this war crime. For Palestinians and reporters with knowledge of Israel’s rules of law – or lack there of – the answer was obvious; Israel hit the hospital. While officials in Tel Aviv first acknowledged the strike as an Israeli attack, they then backtracked and blamed the Palestinian resistance. However reporters covering the ongoing assault on Gaza and the resistance’s rocket fire into Israel have made it clear; the resistance’s rockets cause damage, they have been known to kill people, but they are not powerful enough to cause the amount of death and destruction caused by this one strike.

Looking through social media after the strike, a number of facts were clear to see. If Israel didn’t bomb the Gaza Baptist Hospital, why did the occupation army warn the Gaza Baptist Hospital to evacuate the premises before the bombing occurred?

Israel claims it didn’t hit the hospital, claiming a rocket being shot by Islamic Jihad misfired and caused the damage. To “prove” this, occupation forces have used a video which aired an hour before the strike – at 18:59 local time – when the strike took place around 19:50.

Israel’s newly appointed Digital Spokesperson Hananya Naftali then admitted that occupation forces bombed the Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital. The post has since been deleted.

Israel also deleted a video posted as “evidence” that the Palestinian resistance struck the hospital.

Meanwhile, the Western media prepared the world for the strike. With the BBC posting a question ‘Does Hamas build tunnels under hospitals and schools?’ a day earlier, in a manner that almost justifies Israel’s targeting of innocent civilians receiving treatment.

While the reporting of events following the massacre simply claimed that an “Israeli air strike killed hundred of people at a Gaza hospital”, without condemnation of the obvious violations of international law and the possible war crimes once again committed by the occupation and it’s forces.

READ: Rights watchdog: Israel kills 100 children every day in Gaza

The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.