What do all of these things have in common?
The answer: They all serve to obscure what is actually going on in Gaza right now, which is that Israel has killed dozens of Palestinian protesters.
“Setting off clashes from outraged Palestinians,” Washington Post? Wouldn’t a more accurate version be “setting off the widespread killing of Palestinian protesters by Israeli soldiers”?
“43 were killed today in Gaza clashes,” CNN? You would not know from this headline that it is only Palestinians who have died today, or even that labelling such an asymmetric situation—protesters, the vast majority of whom are peaceful and unarmed, facing off against one of the world’s most advanced armies—as a “clash” between equal sides is an obfuscation.
The same goes for the BBC. “Die in clashes with Israel” is an interesting euphemism for “killed by Israeli soldiers.”
The New York Times has been on a bit of an interesting journey this morning with its framing, as these tweets from the invaluable @nyt_diff feed show.
From “die” to “killed.” Kind of a big difference! But, uh, who killed them? The air? The trees? And what does it mean to be “killed in a protest”?
Still not quite there.
Ohhhh, there it is. What was preventing the Times from making this entirely factual statement earlier?
Do better, folks.
Fox News is, as you would expect, in a particularly bad world of its own.
Update, 1:15 p.m.: Come on!
What is so difficult about this? “Death toll rises to at least 50 Palestinians” is so incoherent as a purely linguistic matter that it shows the contortions some of these outlets will go to to avoid the straightforward truth.