The factory in the basement

With a little help from our friends we cut the video below of Rick Leventhal’s report broadcast on FOX News earlier this week. I think the video is a Power Line exclusive and wanted to take the liberty of drawing your attention to it while repeating the inferences I drew in case you missed what I wrote it in “Tweeting Rick Leventhal.” (I didn’t have the video when I originally posted my comments.) Please check it out.

In the video Leventhal reports on his interview of the the aggrieved owner/occupant of a three-story building demolished by Israeli missiles. Leventhal related that the owner had received a phone call from the IDF. The IDF asked him: how long will it take you to vacate the building? Ten minutes, he replied. The IDF gave him five, and five was enough for him to emerge unscathed.

Three missiles arrived punctually on time to score direct hits. The building was demolished “and the factory downstairs,” according to Leventhal quoting the owner. Leventhal doesn’t say it, but there were apparently no civilian casualties that resulted from the direct hit of the three missiles on the building.

Leventhal and the owner look on the smoldering pile of rubble. Plaintively the man asked, why? I am not Hamas; I am a businessman. I only had a diaper factory in the basement. End of report.

One could deduce from the surface of Leventhal’s report some remarkable facts about Israel’s conduct in the war. The IDF has taken extraordinary measures to protect the lives of innocent civilians. It has good intelligence. It did its best carefully to target its attacks. And it achieved a significant measure of success in doing so. I took the alleged diaper factory as a giveaway that all was not as it was presented with respect to the residence.

Leventhal points out the neighboring gas station that was “remarkably” left untouched by the Israeli strike, but Leventhal left the viewer to draw his own inferences against the grain of the story told by the pictures. The pictures presented a scene of apparently unprovoked devastation.

Indeed, the pictures presented another Palestinian victim of Israel in a suffering situation. They left the viewer to fend for himself. If Leventhal reported and left the viewer to decide, according to FNC’s motto, he provided the viewer with insufficient information to do so.

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