In Middle East coverage, punctuation matters. Period.

According to an article published earlier today by the Los Angeles Times (“Israel says missing soldier was killed in Gaza, not captured“):

Most of the projectiles fired toward Israel have either been intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome antimissile defense system, created with U.S. assistance, or fallen on open ground.

Key question: is that a pure unordered list, or does it also include a definition?

The answer may seem obvious, but when you consider that the United States sells weapons to Qatar — to the tune of $11 billion-worth so far this year — and that Qatar is, in turn, one of Hamas’s biggest financial and political backers, it may be no accident that the above list might be read to insinuate that “projectiles fired toward Israel [may have been] created with U.S. assistance.”

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