Tuesday 14 May 2024

Shifting UN Casualty Numbers Raise Questions: Can Any Reports From Gaza Be Trusted?

 The United Nations recently — and quietly — revised the casualty numbers coming out of Gaza amid the ongoing war between Israel and the terrorist group Hamas, prompting questions about the reporting from Gaza and whether any of it could be trusted.

According to multiple sources, adjustments were quietly made to the casualty count — regarding those killed in Gaza during the ongoing conflict — as more and more of the dead have been positively identified. Those adjustments suggest that Gaza’s Hamas-controlled Health Ministry has grossly inflated the number of women and children who have been killed.

According to the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), on May 6, some 9,500 women and 14,500 children were reported to have been killed in Gaza since the October 7 Hamas terror attacks on Israel. Less than a week later, those numbers had dropped significantly to 5,000 women and 8,000 children, the National Post reported.

According to David Adesnik, director of research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), that change could be the result of the UN adopting a different source of information. He noted that prior to May 6, the UN had cited the Hamas-controlled Government Media Office as a source for the casualty numbers — but more recently, they had not cited the GMO.

“So you see May 6 and before, the GMO (is listed as a source); all of a sudden, May 8, they don’t cite a source,” Adesnik said, suggesting that the UN was relying on the Gaza Health Ministry instead — despite the fact that Hamas controls that as well. “So clearly here we’ve done a switch from GMO’s big number, which never had any clear basis elaborated; like they just offered nothing but their own assertion. Whereas the Health Ministry does more to back its stuff up.”

A number of critics pointed out that relying on any numbers influenced by Hamas terrorists was likely a mistake.

“The UN has significantly adjusted Palestinian casualty figures for the ongoing war in the Gaza Strip, halving the number of women and children previously reported killed. Who is surprised to learn the Hamas-run Ministry of Health lied and the UN went along with it for 7 months?” Aviva Klompas posted.

“UN revises Gaza death toll, almost 50% less women and children killed than previously reported. Hamas’ death toll figures have been disputed by Israel, yet they have been quoted by media, humanitarian organizations and world leaders, including Biden,” news outlet Visegrád 24 added.

“How convenient that for 7 months they peddled lies. The United Nations seemingly halved the estimated number of women and children killed in Gaza, according to UN data published on May 6 and 8,” Adam Milstein said.


“UN has revised the Gaza death toll, almost 50% less women and children killed than previously reported. A big congratulations to media organisations like the BBC & Sky News who reported unverified figures and Hamas propaganda. Who knew a terrorist organisation would lie?”

The shifting numbers raise legitimate questions as to whether other reports out of Gaza can be trusted – such as claims that Israel was behind the reported “bombing” of Al Shifa Hospital or that Israel was behind attacks on humanitarian aid trucks, and even reports that made it as far as the BBC blaming Israel for things that only Hamas terrorists were guilty of doing.

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