Opinion: When U.S. government – which is responsible for the death of hundreds of journalists and over 150,000 innocent people in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan – criticizes Israel over the tragic death of a small child, it should at least stick to facts

American media and its academic institutions, are clearly sensitive to the suffering of innocents.

That commendable position, has often been used by terror organizations, to claim the moral high ground.

ריאן סולימאן
7-year-old Rian Suleiman


The United States is a superpower and its military is not easily swayed by public criticism over its own methods of fighting terrorists. But when the American administration criticizes Israel, it is both hypocritical and harmful.

In fact, such criticism can contribute nothing to the protection of the innocent but can serve the interest of the terror groups.

U.S. criticism of Israeli conduct did not begin with the killing of Al Jazeera reporter and U.S. citizen Shirin Abu Akleh, last May.

Abu Akleh was killed during exchanges of fire in the Jenin refugee camp.
Israel released a report last month, stating that the kill bullet was likely fired by one of the IDF troops, but vehemently denying claims that the shooting was intentional.

But what of the American record of journalists killed in battle? Between 2003 and 2018, 326 journalists died in America’s war on terror in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan.

Those deaths are hundreds of tragedies. Many of them were killed by American forces. But surprisingly, no investigation of those killings has been published.

When a probe was initiated, in Madrid, following the death of a Spanish Journalist who was killed by U.S. troops in 2011, the Americans demanded their Spanish counterparts, cease any legal action – even when the identity of the American servicemen involved, was known.

This week, a State Department spokesperson criticized Israel after the death of 7-year-old Rian Suleiman from the village of Tekoa. According to one version of the incident, The child fell from a height, while running away from troops. In another, he was frightened by the soldiers whom he believed were coming to arrest his brother, panicked and collapsed as his heart failed.

Apparently, even when IDF troops are not directly involved, and there was no contact between them and the victim, they can be held responsible.
That responsibility can be attributed to them, even if unlike Abu Akleh, the dead child was not a U.S. citizen. Thus American’s moral conscious is seen to be working, overtime.

שירין אבו עאקלה
Slain Shireen Abu Akleh (Photo: EPA)


State Department deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel said on his podium over the last weekend, that the U.S. was “heartbroken to learn of the death of an innocent Palestinian child.”

He then added a call for “a thorough and immediate investigation into the circumstances surrounding the child’s death alongside an Israeli military probe.”

His statement came in response to a question from Sa’id Erekat, who reports for Arab media outlets.

“An Israeli soldier chased a Palestinian child to his death,” Erekat said. “The U.S. demanded Israel to reduce the pressure on the Palestinians, but the IDF chief of staff ordered to continue eliminating Palestinian activists and leaders with aircraft and drones,” he said. To the reporter, those Palestinians were activists, not terrorists.

Instead of putting the Erekat in his place, Patel said the U.S. urges both sides to work for calm. That statement can be equated to a request that American forces and the Islamic State, show restraint in their battles.

הנזקים בלוד לאחר המהומות
May 2021 riots (Photo: Oz Mualem, Yariv Katz)


We know well, the bias and anti-Israel rhetoric used when referring to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. After all, it was the New York Times that published on its front page, the photos of 70 mostly Palestinian children killed in May 2021, in the fighting against the Palestinian factions in Gaza.

Abraham Foxman, then CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, called the Times headline, no less than “blood libel”.

Was he exaggerating? Robert Satloff, who is a senior researcher at the Washington Institute, published a detailed article justifying Foxman’s view.

This progressive newspaper did not see fit to publish, on its front page, pictures of thousands of children from Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan – who were killed in American bombings.

By conservative accounts: 155,000 thousand civilians were killed in the U.S. bombings in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq. How many of them were children? Although there are no exact figures, we can refer to another statistic. In bombings carried out by the American forces between 2016 – 2022, 40% of the non-combatants hurt, were children.

The death of 70 children is in fact tragic. but is used in the venomous anti-Israeli campaign. But tens and thousands of dead, are not a tragedy, they are a statistic.

U.S. Predator
U.S. Predator (Photo: AP)


The problem is that the administration is not immune to the bias. Hence we see its hypocritical double standard in full view.

One incident that was reported more extensively, was a Drone attack on a suspicious vehicle in Kabul in August 2021, where seven children died. In a statement released in December, the Pentagon announced that after it has completed its investigation, no steps would be taken against any U.S. servicemen.

Perhaps the American forces try to reduce civilian casualties, but no matter how hard they try, they cannot avoid most incidents.

But because America is a superpower, it can berate Israel for its “immoral” conduct, as it mourns the death of Abu Akleh or that of a small child, who probably did die from fear. But Israel’s greatest friend and alley should also present facts and the truth.

As reported by Ynetnews