CiF Watch prompts correction to ‘Comment is Free’ claim on Gaza rocket attacks

On July 21st we demonstrated that ‘Comment is Free’ contributor Giles Fraser made a significant error when purporting to cite the number of rockets fired into Israel from Gaza during ‘Operation Pillar of Defense’ in November.

Fraser’s post – a relatively interesting meditation on both the efficacy and spiritual dimension of Western missile (and missile defense) systems – included this passage:

These days, bitachon doesn’t so much mean the Lord Almighty. It means Iron Dome, the missile defence system, designed to intercept rocket attacks on Israel. During operation Pillar of Defence,in 2012, during which Hamas fired over 100 rockets from Gaza into Israel, Iron Dome was seen to have been about 85% successful. The technology is impressive and is set to get even more so. Iron Dome is a game-changer.

As we noted in our original post, however, while during the first 24 hours of the war roughly 100 rockets were fired into Israel, during the entire eight-day conflict, which ended on Nov. 22, Hamas and other Palestinian terror groups launched approximately 1,500 rockets at Israel.

We contacted Guardian editors, alerting them to the error, and, last night, the passage was revised to accurately note that the number cited (100) represented the rockets fired only during the first 24 hours of the war.  The Guardian wrote the following in the correction section of the paper:



We commend Guardian editors on the prompt correction.

3 replies »

  1. Well done again to CifWatch. The revision is great – it acknowledges that Operation Pillar of Defense was a RESPONSE to great provocation. It (strangely for the Guardian) puts cause and effect the right way around!

    A cumulation of small victories such as this can really mount up to a major change. Keep up the good work.