NY Times, in pro-Palestinian coverage, camouflages terrorists' identity

On Nov. 12, Israeli undercover agents barged into a Palestinian hospital near Hebron to nab a couple of Hamas operatives.  They killed one and left with his cousin.  It was a generally successful counter-terrorism operation.

But this wasn’t exactly how the New York Times reported this incident.  Instead, readers were given a heavy dose of outrage that Israel had violated a peaceful hospital, while the real identity of Israel’s prey -- a couple of terrorists -- was hardly mentioned.

To wit, starting with the headline:  “Palestinian Dies as Undercover Israelis Raid Hospital.”  The fatality, in the eyes of the Times, was just a “Palestinian” – never mind his Hamas credentials.

The article, by correspondent Isabel Kershner, follows the same pro-Palestinian, anti-Israel emphasis as the headline.   The intrusion into the hospital gets top billing, while the terrorist targeted by the operation is kept neatly disguised.

In fact, one has to go far into the article, into the 10th paragraph, to get an inkling of who these two cousins really were.  It’s only then that Kershner comes through with a brief identification:  “The military described Mr. Shalaida’s family as ‘known Hamas operatives,’ referring to the Islamic militant group.”

And even then, Kershner deals softly with the cousins – under Kershner’s pen, they become members of an “Islamic militant group.”

Ah, those pardonable “militants”!

Leo Rennert is a former White House correspondent and Washington bureau chief of McClatchy Newspapers

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