European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said her remark comparing deaths in Gaza with the murders in Toulouse was “distorted” by a news agency, but a video shows her reaction distorted the facts.
After the cold-blooded murder of a rabbi and three young children at a Toulouse Jewish school, Ashton told a conference in Brussels on Arab refugees, “When we remember what happened in Toulouse today, when we remember what happened when I was in Norway last week, a year ago. When we know what's happening in Syria, when we see what's happened in Gaza and Sderot, in different parts of the world, we remember young people and children who lose their lives."
The text version that was released by her office omitted the words “and Sderot,” apparently in order to avoid showing any remorse for the victims of constant terrorist rockets in the southern Israeli town.
Virtually every major political leader in Israel, including Opposition leader Tzipi Livni, expressed outrage at the comparison between deaths in Gaza, where most of those killed are terrorists or are harbored by them, with the cold-blooded point blank murder in Toulouse.
The omission of the town of Sderot in her office’s official text report apparently served as the basis for what Ashton called a “distortion” of her remarks, which even with the inclusion of Sderot, categorically made a comparison between IDF counterterrorist actions that accidentally injure civilians and the carefully planned murder of the Jews in Toulouse.
Nevertheless, Ashton told a European Union parliamentary hearing, "I drew no parallel whatsoever between this tragedy and events elsewhere in the Middle East." Her spokesman claimed her words were "grossly distorted” and that “there was no comparison made whatsoever."
Her office did not explain why the text report omitted “and Sderot.”