‘How Is That Acceptable?’ MSNBC Shuns Expertise To Shame Israeli President

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MSNBC’s Ana Cabrera tried to shame Israeli President Isaac Herzog on her Tuesday show by asking if it was “acceptable to you” that an IDF spokesperson told CNN that it estimates that the civilian-to-combatant death ratio in Gaza is 2:1. Despite all the emotional manipulation surrounding this topic from the media, Cabrera took it a step further by ignoring an urban warfare expert she had on earlier in the program that said such ratios are in line with other recent operations.

That expert was retired Maj. John Spencer and Cabrera asked him, “This really shocked me. An IDF spokesman told CNN yesterday that the Israeli military believes an average of two civilians are being killed to every Hamas fighter. Two-to-one.  How is that acceptable?”

That Cabrera was shocked says more about her and her unwillingness to educate herself on such matters than it does about Israel, Gaza, or anything else. It also says something that Cabrera omitted the spokesperson said 2:1 was “perhaps unique in the world.”

As for Spencer, he provided something that is badly missing in the media: historical context, “So, unfortunately is that, you know, the civilian casualties are 90% of modern wars and that number is– actually is equivalent to operations even the U.S. supported like the Battle of Mosul in 2017 where 5,000 ISIS fighters in a city of 700,000 and there were 10,000 civilian casualties. Two-to-one.”

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Cabrera than interrupted, “But there are said to be like 20-plus-thousand Hamas fighters. So, are we going to see 40, 50,000 civilian deaths?”

Spencer said likely not, “because of the fact that I think we have seen the height of that, based on the operations that are unfolding, but when Hamas, which is the textbook of trying to get their own civilians– I’ve never seen this, where they literally are forcing civilians to stay, ISIS did that too, but at this scale and where the civilians don’t have a place to go, although there’s IDP locations.”

He also warned about taking Cabrera’s feelings to their logical conclusion, “this is a test of the Western way of warfare, right? We all watch every strike, every moment, every day. What does that mean if somebody like a Hamas in the future does this, takes a city, a massive city and says, look, because of the cost, ‘I own this city now. You can’t do anything about it.’”

All very good points that were promptly ignored as about 50 minutes later, Cabrera welcomed Herzog, “I understand you’re making efforts to protect the civilians, but we’ve all seen the pictures of the destruction, the desperation and the death toll is climbing, in fact, an IDF spokesman confirmed yesterday that the military believes two civilians have been killed in Gaza for every Hamas militant. Is that acceptable to you?”

Herzog, the former leader of the Labor Party, claimed to be unaware of the statement, but added, “this war is a war that is not only between Israel and Hamas. It’s a war that is intended really, truly, to save Western civilization, to save the values of Western civilization.”

Spencer didn’t say it, but it was heavily implied that Israel is facing a double standard in how it conducts military operations and he brought data to back his claim. Yet, Cabrera and much of the rest of the media don’t care. 

Here is a transcript for the December 5 show:

MSNBC Ana Cabrera Reports

12/5/2023

10:06 PM ET

ANA CABRERA: This really shocked me. An IDF spokesman told CNN yesterday that the Israeli military believes an average of two civilians are being killed to every Hamas fighter. Two-to-one. 

JOHN SPENCER: Yeah. 

CABRERA: How is that acceptable? 

SPENCER: So, unfortunately is that, you know, the civilian casualties are 90% of modern wars and that number is– actually is equivalent to operations even the U.S. supported like the Battle of Mosul in 2017 where 5,000 ISIS fighters in a city of 700,000 and there were 10,000 civilian casualties. Two-to-one.

CABRERA: But there are said to be like 20-plus-thousand Hamas fighters. So, are we going to see 40, 50,000 civilian deaths? 

SPENCER: I don’t think so, but, I mean, because of the fact that I think we have seen the height of that, based on the operations that are unfolding, but when Hamas, which is the textbook of trying to get their own civilians– I’ve never seen this, where they literally are forcing civilians to stay, ISIS did that too, but at this scale and where the civilians don’t have a place to go, although there’s IDP locations. 

I mean, Israel is not striking there because there is no reason to. Israel’s going where Hamas is, so there has to be a point of Hamas having ownership of this and how hard this is, but this is a test of the Western way of warfare, right? We all watch every strike, every moment, every day. What does that mean if somebody like a Hamas in the future does this, takes a city, a massive city and says, look, because of the cost, “I own this city now. You can’t do anything about it.” 

10:56 AM ET

CABRERA: I understand you’re making efforts to protect the civilians, but we’ve all seen the pictures of the destruction, the desperation and the death toll is climbing, in fact, an IDF spokesman confirmed yesterday that the military believes two civilians have been killed in Gaza for every Hamas militant. Is that acceptable to you? 

ISAAC HERZOG: I’m unaware of this quote by an IDF spokesperson, but I will say the following: this war is a war that is not only between Israel and Hamas. It’s a war that is intended really, truly, to save Western civilization, to save the values of Western civilization. 

We are attacked by a jihadist network, an empire of evil emanating from Tehran with its forks in Lebanon with Hezbollah, and Hamas in Gaza, with the Houthis in Yemen, this empire is in Iraq, and this empire wants to conquer the entire Middle East, and if it weren’t for us, Europe would be next and the United States follows. I remind all about 9/11 and thereafter, meaning there are extreme fundamentalists with thoughts, that want all of us out and that’s what we’re facing and the world has to understand it. We didn’t want this war, God forbid, we went through hell, but we have to defend our people and enable everybody to go back to the region and live in peace, and that’s what we are doing for the sake of the entire world. 

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