NYT Camouflages Palestinian Terrorism
If you pick up the Sept. 18 edition of the New York Times, you will encounter the following headline on page 7 of the front section: "Palestinian Killed in Raid In West Bank."
If you then go on to peruse other stories, you will leave with a negative impression of Israel, thanks to a headline that suggests indiscriminate killing of a Palestinian by Israeli forces. A Palestinian was killed for no good or given reason, it would seem.
Even if you linger for a moment and delve into the top of Jerusalem correspondent Isabel Kershner's article, the impression of unwarranted killing of a Palestinian will simply be reinforced. Kershner's lead paragraph reads as follows: "Israeli forces fatally shot a Palestinian man they had been sent to arrest in a refugee camp early Tuesday, according to the Israeli military and relatives of the man."
Israel remains painted as responsible for the fatal shooting of just a "Palestinian man" -- a Palestinian with no apparent credentials or reason to merit such a fate. To be sure, Israel was trying to arrest him -- but that could have been for some misdeed that wouldn't justify lethal force.
Kershner's second paragraph, if anything, broadens and expands her anti-Israel bent. "The shooting, in the Jenin camp in the West Bank, was the latest in a series of deadly raids that have strained the atmosphere around nascent Israel-Palestinian peace talks," she writes. Now Israel hasn't just used undue firepower to kill a "Palestinian man," but Israel compounds its misdeed with other presumably unjustified deadly raids on Palestinians.
It is not until the third paragraph, when most Times readers already have gone on to other "news" that Kershner starts to come clean and reports that, according to the Israeli military, the victim was a "wanted terror activist" and "had been shot as he tried to flee and Palestinians hurled rocks, firebombs and improvised grenades at Israeli soldiers."
And it is not until the fourth paragraph that Kershner finally acknowledges that he was a member of "Islamic Jihad," which she softly and antiseptically describes as a "militant group." And, at that point, most readers already would have skipped to other articles.
Yet, even then she hides from Times readers that, far more than just being a "militant" organization, Islamic Jihad is recognized as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, and Israel. There is ample documentation of the terrorist credentials of Islamic Jihad, including rocket attacks on Israeli civilian populations launched from Gaza, but Kershner chooses to ignore it. Islamic Jihad remains untainted in her view and in her reportage.
Another example of the whitewash of Palestinian terrorism amid the Israel-blame game in the pages of the New York Times.
Leo Rennert is a former White House correspondent and Washington bureau chief of McClatchy Newspapers