White House spokesman Josh Earnest called Israel’s attack earlier this week on a UN school that was sheltering Palestinian children “totally unacceptable and totally indefensible.” He did not mention that the Israeli military has said that it was being attacked by Hamas terrorists in the vicinity, nor did he note that Hamas has used the UN to store weapons, to launch rockets at Israeli civilians, or to attack Israeli troops–as even the UN has noted.
The attack on the UN facility is certainly regrettable, and might–perhaps–even be unacceptable. But the attack is certainly defensible, and a defense was offered by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who noted that Hamas is responsible for civilian deaths, given that it started the war and cares little for civilians on either side of the Gaza boundary. Israel has also maintained that its actions are within the bounds of international law.
What is indefensible is a White House that claims to support Israel’s right to self-defense, and then objecting when Israel exercises that right. What is indefensible is a White House that claims to support Israel but leads the world in criticizing Israel–unfairly–in a moment of crisis. What is indefensible is a White House press corps that fails to challenge President Barack Obama’s distortion of the facts and reinforces his anti-Israel pandering.