The Israeli Defense Force (IDF)’s deception of the media where it informed of a ground invasion of Gaza but launched airstrikes instead could affect its credibility at the International Criminal Court (ICC) where it is facing war crimes investigation, an article in The Jerusalem Post says.
The “deception” incident took place on May 14 when the IDF posted on its official social media account that the air and ground troops were poised to attack the Gaza strip. Soon after, it was flashed globally by various media.
Instead of doing what they said they’d do, the IDF remained in Israel. The IDF’s “announcement” was intended to drive Hamas fighters into their tunnel network and then bomb the Gaza metro tunnels.
Announcing the success of the operation, The IDF tweeted on Monday, “What’s (equal to) 9.3 miles (15 km)? 163 football fields, 46 Eiffel Towers, 34 Empire State Buildings, 18 Burj Khalifas and nearly 2 Mt. Everests! Our fighter jets neutralized 9.3 miles of the Hamas 'Metro' terror tunnel system overnight. That's 9.3 miles that can no longer be used for terror.”
“The foreign media in Israel felt like it had been duped, that the IDF had intentionally misled it to fool Hamas into thinking that a ground invasion had begun,” the article argues adding, “They (foreign journalists) feel like they were intentionally manipulated by the IDF for tactical military gain. And they might be right.”
In addition, the IDF bombed a 12-storey tower in Gaza on Saturday that was home to the offices of the Associated Press and Al Jazeera, claiming that the building was used by Hamas intelligence without providing any evidence pertaining to the same. The attack which leveled the tower, came after the IDF was being accused of deceiving the media and caused global condemnation
The article goes on to say, “there will soon come a time when the IDF will ask journalists to believe them on a particular issue. Something major will happen somewhere, and the IDF will investigate and explain what happened. If the media doesn’t believe them now, they won’t believe them then.”
Israel is facing a potential war crimes investigation at the ICC in The Hague, which could lead to indictments in the International Criminal Court. One of the ways Israel fights back is to explain that the IDF investigates itself, and that the judiciary in Israel is independent as well.
The article concludes by saying, “But if the military is caught deceiving the media, why would the ICC believe that it’s not being deceived as well?”