John Spencer, Chair of Urban Warfare Studies at the Modern War Institute at West Point, Author, and UWP podcast host, responded to what he calls a “pervasive message conveyed by mainstream media and others,” that he believes needs some correction.

Spencer claims that “most headlines say that ‘Israeli hostages were freed,’ while the Israeli hostages were not freed, they were RESCUED, in a historic hostage rescue operation, involving the whole of the nation of Israel, as in the IDF, the Yamam, Shin Bet, the police, and the Air Force, where armed Hamas members were holding Israeli hostages in different buildings, in a densely populated area, and using civilians to hold those hostages.”

He also said that we must notice the, "'Number of Palestinians quoted as killed in Israel’s operation.' Headlines have been saying that there were 200 Palestinian casualties. The number supposedly comes from the Hamas and Gaza health ministry which we know are not reliable sources of casualty numbers, especially immediately after an event. At least mainstream media should have written these numbers as ‘unverified.’”

Spencer added: “These numbers should not include a single Hamas member who is resisting the IDF and its operation at all. It is well known that there were civilians who were involved in holding the hostages and resisting the IDF operations, through machine gun and RPG fire. Anyone engaging in these actions should be considered combatant, and definitely not considered in the civilian casualty count.”... Read More: Arutz-7