Jon Stewart’s take on the Israel-Gaza crisis drew robust laughs from audience members on Monday, but some commentators aren’t finding “The Daily Show” bit all that funny. One is Times of Israel editor David Horovitz.
In an article entitled “Jon Stewart — so funny, so wrong on Israel-Gaza,” Horovitz picks apart each of Stewart’s wisecracks, protesting the show’s unsympathetic treatment of Israel.
Stewart’s Israel-Gaza segment opens with a newscaster’s announcement that Israel is poised to invade Gaza “as aerial bombardments from both sides continue.”
To which Stewart jests, “Tastes great, more killing.”
To which Horovitz vigorously waves a red flag.
Stewart has already misled viewers, Horovitz argues, by failing to provide a reason for Israel’s potential invasion of Gaza, “such as, say, Hamas being a terrorist organization with a notorious track record of suicide bombings, individual killings, kidnappings, and incessant rocket fire.”
The bit also gives the impression that both sides are equally intent on killing, an impression which Horovitz says is false. While Israel evacuated Gaza in 2005 so that there would be more peace in the region, Hamas is “avowedly committed to the destruction of Israel,” Horovitz writes.
Stewart then pokes fun at the “asymmetrical nature of the conflict,” comparing Israel’s defensive Iron Dome and high-tech mobile alert system to the lack of protection afforded to Gazans.
“Both sides are engaging in aerial bombardment, but one side appears to be-bomb-better,” Stewart jokes.
On this point, Horovitz is incredulous.
“It’s a bad thing that we developed a unique, astonishing Iron Dome missile defense system, without which hundreds of us would be dead? It’s a bad thing that we developed an app to warn us that the rockets designed to kill our citizens are heading this way?”
Stewart also tries to dramatize the asymmetry by comparing the image of a reporter from Tel Aviv to his correspondent in Gaza. While the Tel-Aviv reporter wears an unbuttoned orange t-shirt, the reporter in Gaza, swaddled in a protective vest, “looks like an extra from the ‘Hurt Locker,’ ” Stewart quips.
Again, Horovitz is unimpressed.
“Well, yes, NBC’s Tel Aviv correspondent can afford to look more relaxed because, despite Hamas’s best efforts, he’s fairly safe, protected by that Iron Dome system, and the sirens, and the apps, and the reinforced rooms, and the bomb shelters that Israel provides to try to keep its citizenry alive in the vicious Middle East,” he says. “That doesn’t add up to a hermetic shield, but it’s doing wonders in keeping casualty figures down.”
“And, yes,” Horovitz adds, “NBC’s man in Gaza is more at risk, because he’s reporting from an enclave that was seized seven years ago by a ruthless Islamist terrorist organization that, far from building bomb shelters and other defenses for Gazans…has diverted electricity, building materials and all other relevant resources to manufacture rockets.”
Read the full article by David Horovitz at The Times of Israel:
Watch the Jon Stewart segment below: