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Israel wants ‘total media blackout’ as it pounds Gaza: Palestinian scholar

Photo shows al-Jalaa building as it collapses after being hit by Israeli missiles. (Photo by Reuters)

Israel’s recent bombing of a media tower in Gaza was a brazen attempt to create a “total media blackout” amid its ongoing onslaught on the besieged coastal enclave, a Palestinian scholar tells Press TV.

“Israel wants a total media blackout. Israel hates the truth and wants a blind world,” Refaat Alareer, editor of Gaza Writes Back (2014), said in an emailed interview on Sunday.

“The destruction of the media building shows how Israel is destroying Palestinian lives and massacring them with total immunity from America and Europe who enable Israel and arm it,” Alareer noted.

On Saturday, an Israeli air raid demolished an 11-story building in Gaza that housed a number of international media offices, including those of Al Jazeera and The Associated Press.

Live Al Jazeera video showed the al-Jalaa building, which also contained some 60 residential apartments, crashing to the ground as dust and debris flew into the air.

The attack marked a major escalation of the ongoing Israeli aggression in Gaza, which has killed nearly 200 Palestinians so far, including many women and children.

Alareer said Israel’s latest bout of violence is part of the regime’s scheme of “ethnic cleansing” in Palestine, designed to purge the Palestinians from their lands.

“Israel was born of and continues to be in ethnic cleansing,” he asserted, adding that only “genocidal regimes defend Israel.”

An Israeli airstrike destroyed several homes in Gaza on Sunday, killing 42 Palestinians, marking the bloodiest day of the ongoing military aggression that began last Monday.

“When Israel destroyed the buildings, it also bombed the roads so as to prevent the ambulances and rescue (workers) from reaching the area and thus maximizing the deaths,” Alareer said.

In a New York Times article last week, Alareer wrote that his family in Gaza sensed intense fear in the face of relentless Israeli air raids, recalling how his 8-year-old daughter had asked, “Can Israel destroy our building if the power is out?!”

The Gaza-based resistance front has retaliated the Israeli offensive by launching hundreds of rockets into the occupied territories.

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