update deskIsrael at War

Israel releases new Gaza death toll, claims historically low civilian deaths

"What Israel has done is take the effort to minimize civilian casualties as no other army has done," said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Vehicles and military equipment as part of activity by the Israel Defense Forces in Rafah, in the southernmost Gaza Strip, on May 8, 2024. Credit: IDF.
Vehicles and military equipment as part of activity by the Israel Defense Forces in Rafah, in the southernmost Gaza Strip, on May 8, 2024. Credit: IDF.

The ratio of terrorists to Palestinian noncombatants killed during Israel’s ongoing war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip is approximately one to one, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revealed this week.

“What Israel has done is take the effort to minimize civilian casualties as no other army has done,” the Israeli leader said in an interview with U.S. author and political adviser Dan Senor on Monday.

“We use leaflets, we use millions of text messages, phone calls. We actually call the people, give up the benefit of surprise, tell them: ‘Get out of the way. Get out of the war zone so that we can accomplish our military objectives while you’re in a safe place,'” said Netanyahu.

“We’re facing 35,000 Hamas terrorists. We’ve killed already about 14,000, wounded many others, and we’re progressing towards that goal” of destroying the terror group, he added.

Israeli government spokesman Avi Hyman on Monday reinforced Netanyahu’s message, saying that the Israel Defense Forces had killed more than 14,000 terrorists and approximately 16,000 civilians since the outbreak of the war on Oct. 7.

“Israel is setting the new gold standard for urban warfare with what appears to be the lowest civilian-to-combatant casualty ratio in history,” stated Hyman.

Last week, the United Nations admitted it overcounted the number of Gazan children who have been confirmed killed in the war by a staggering 42%.

In March, the U.N. Children’s Fund stated that 13,450 children had been killed, citing figures from the Hamas-run Gazan Health Ministry. Last Wednesday, the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) released updated casualty figures according to which 7,797 Gazan children have died in the war as of April 30.

“The revisions are taken…you know, of course, in the fog of war, it’s difficult to come up with numbers,” Farhan Haq, deputy spokesman for U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres, told JNS on Friday.

The 13,450 statistic was cited frequently in the international press, leading to accusations that the Jewish state had committed war crimes, including intentionally targeting children.

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