Home / World / Fact-check: Netanyahu's challenger Benny Gantz really killed 1,364 "terrorists" in Gaza? – Israeli election 2019

Fact-check: Netanyahu's challenger Benny Gantz really killed 1,364 "terrorists" in Gaza? – Israeli election 2019

On Sunday, the last contender for the premiership, Benny Gantz – former head of the Israeli military staff and currently leader of the party Hosen L & # 39; Yisrael – directed his first video of the campaign as the run for the upcoming elections heats up , listing his army achievements.

Against the background of the images of destruction in Gaza accompanied by dramatic music, Gantz said that during the Operation Protective Edge in 2014, under his command, 1364 "terrorists" were killed.

The video states that the figure is based on a report by the Foreign Ministry, but according to a report by the Foreign Ministry published on June 15, 2016, the number of Palestinians involved in the fights that were killed was actually 936.

According to the collapse of the Israeli government, the Israeli Defense Forces and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs admit that "military activists" constituted only 44% of all those killed during the Protective Edge operation. The army says that of 2,125 Palestinians killed, 936 were "terrorists" and at least 761 were civilians – of them, 369 children under 15 and 284 women. The identities of the remaining 428 were not classified.

In his video, Gantz seems to have taken the number of "terrorists" and added to all 428 unrecognized victims that he had reached the total number of 1,364 "terrorists" he claims to have killed.

A later report published by the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center, entitled "Hamas Estimate Dead During the Operation Protective Edge" has updated the number of militants among the dead to 48.7%.

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The Israeli human rights organization B & Ts reported a month after the fighting that 2202 Palestinians died in the IDF fire, of which 765 participated in fighting or carried out a military role in the Gaza Strip. B & Ts. Tsemem said 1391 Palestinian civilians were killed, 63% of the total, 526 of them under the age of 18.

Quiet for 3.5 years? It depends on who you ask

Benny Gantz's video is proud of "3.5 years of silence" on the Israeli front with Gaza. In fact, during the 3.5 years of Gantz – mid-2014 at the end of 2017, no Israeli army or civilian was killed by this fire. But Gantz does not explain why he casually stopped counting at the end of 2017.

From the end of Operation Protective Edge to the end of 2018, at least 870 bullets and missiles have been fired at Israel. Almost all of them were fired in 2018 – in the first half of that year, the number of bullets and missiles fired at Israel increased by 726% compared to the previous year.

But in 2018, two people were killed: Aviv Levi, 21, from Petah Tikva, who was killed by a Palestinian sniper at the Gaza border in July, and Mohammed Abu Asabeh, 48, a Palestinian worker who spent the night in an apartment in Ashkelon that took a direct rocket hit two months ago.

Dozens of Israelis, soldiers and civilians were injured (or shocked) by missiles launched against Israel since the Protective Edge operation ended in 2014.

On the Palestinian side, during the Great March of Return, which began in March 2018, more than 180 Palestinians have died and tens of thousands have been wounded, according to the United Nations.

Aerial incendiary bombs also started flying into Israel from Gaza in 2018, causing fires that burned about 30,000 dunams in Israel, two-thirds of which were nature reserves, according to Israel's Nature Authority and Parks. Even many crops are burned.

& # 39; Hamas suffers blow after stroke & # 39; – and so also the civilians of Gaza

The images that Gantz used in the film, which entitled "6,321 destroyed targets – parts of Gaza have returned to the stone age" are actually from Rafah, taken the day after Lieut's body. Hadar Goldin was captured ("Black Friday"). In the hours following its capture, Israeli forces instituted the so-called Hannibal directive, which provided for a massive fire to prevent the kidnappers from escaping with kidnapped soldiers.

Gantz is proud of the Black Friday images, an event that has stimulated international disapproval and that Amnesty International has accused Israel of committing war crimes.

On that day, Israeli forces advanced into a populated area and used heavy gunshots to isolate the site. The operation also required more aggressive air support than usual. That day alone, between 135 and over 200 Palestinians died and hundreds were injured, according to Amnesty International. It is not clear how many of the dead and wounded were affiliated with Hamas.

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