Analysis: Media failing at balanced Gaza coverage

Former Israeli soldier Ilan Mann, 25, poses for a photo with his car adorned with two Israeli flags...

Former Israeli soldier Ilan Mann, 25, poses for a photo with his car adorned with two Israeli flags in downtown Toronto. (ERNEST DOROSZUK/QMI Agency)

Sue-Ann Levy, QMI Agency Columnist

, Last Updated: 8:57 AM ET

TORONTO -- Eden S. says throughout the month-long conflict between Israel and Gaza, she has waited to see the Canadian media report on how the constant barrage of Hamas missiles have "completely shattered" the lives of children and adults living in southern Israel.

The 27-year-old first-time mother, who made Aliyah (moved) to Israel from her native Toronto in 2009, is still waiting.

"Just because you don't see pictures of dead babies in the south of Israel ... children (there) are psychologically damaged and will be for the rest of their lives," she said last week during a brief return to Toronto with her three-month-old daughter.

Her husband, an engineer, is back in Israel.

"They wet their beds at night ... they can't take a shower, they can't be alone from their parents and the emotional trauma is for life," she added, referring in particular to the children living in the southern Negev town of Sderot, near the Gaza border.

Eden added that businesses there haven't been able to operate for a month, and houses and apartment buildings have been damaged by shrapnel when Israel's Iron Dome technology intercepts missiles.

As of this writing, Israel has agreed to another 72-hour ceasefire. Hamas has broken the previous three before the deadline.

Ilan Mann, another native Torontonian who just returned from three years in Israel -- of which 18 months were spent in the Israeli army -- said it's not uncommon for missiles to be fired on the town of Sderot every 20 minutes. Residents -- young, the elderly and the physically disabled -- have only 15 seconds to get to shelter, often from as high as the 20th floor of a building.

Because Hamas has been launching missiles at this town for years, it has now earned, sadly, one of the highest rates of youth post-traumatic stress disorder in the world, Mann added.

"It's an incredibly touching and depressing situation," he said. "But since there's relatively little death because the Israeli government has taken serious precautions, that human tragedy is trivialized and glossed over in the western media."

Eden did not want her full last name used because, as she discovered during her sojourn to Canada, friends she thought were open-minded have become very biased about the latest Israeli-Palestinian conflict.


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