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Media Ignore Evidence Showing Slain Gaza ‘Journalists’ Were Terrorists

The headquarters of The New York Times. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

On January 7, media outlets widely reported that Israel had killed two Palestinian “journalists” in Gaza.

The stories about the deaths of Al Jazeera’s freelancers Hamza Al-Dahdouh and Mustafa Thuraya, who had also been an AFP contributor, were almost identical. They all highlighted the fact that the former was the son of Wael Al-Dahdouh, the Qatar-based TV station’s renowned chief correspondent in Gaza.

The stories focused on the personal tragedy of the father, who had lost his immediate family in the war, but continued reporting from the field under dangerous conditions.

Media outlets also quoted Al Jazeera’s condemnation of the deliberate Israeli “targeting” of journalists, and mentioned the number of journalists killed so far in the war, according to the flawed data of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).

No media outlet, however, bothered to update or correct their report when on January 10, the Israeli army released evidence proving Al-Dahdouh and Thuraya had been terror operatives.

The IDF says two Al Jazeera journalists targeted in an airstrike on Sunday in southern Gaza’s Rafah, were members of terror organizations in the Gaza Strip.

The strike was carried out after the IDF said it spotted a terror operative piloting a drone, and subsequently hit a car…

— Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian (@manniefabian) January 10, 2024

Reuters and AP, for example, which are responsible for providing news updates to thousands of media outlets worldwide, kept their original headlines and stories unchanged:



The AP’s report also included an emotional-collegial touch:

Palestinian journalists have played an essential role in reporting on the conflict for local and international media outlets, even as many have lost loved ones and been forced to flee their own homes because of the fighting.

Another wire service, AFP, had no choice but to issue a story about its former freelancer-turned-terrorist after the army’s announcement. But on social media platform X, the agency’s only post on the story still echoes Al-Jazeera:

#BREAKING Blinken says death of Al Jazeera journalists in Gaza ‘unimaginable tragedy’

— AFP News Agency (@AFP) January 7, 2024

Other media outlets followed suit.

The New York Times and Washington Post emphasized Al-Dahdouh’s family tragedy.



Both stories still say that the Israeli army did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

And The Washington Post went as far as lamenting the death of someone who had looked up to his father as a journalistic role model.

But it was the news Sunday that his son Hamza al-Dahdouh, the one who had followed in his footsteps and become a journalist, had been killed alongside another colleague, Mustafa Thuraya, that cut the deepest.

Indeed, after the IDF announced that the son had been a Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist, the writers could have discovered that the apple didn’t fall far from the tree, albeit in a different sense: Before he became a journalist, the father had been imprisoned in Israel for terrorist activity. According to an Israeli security source, he was affiliated with Islamic Jihad.

But the Washington Post story, and that of The New York Times, were not updated.

The same applies to CNN, ABC News, BBC, and many others. They echoed the tragic human angle or Al Jazeera’s claims, but failed to update their stories or publish new ones when the new information came to light.

While some outlets did include the immediate army response, saying it had targeted terrorists, it cannot replace a statement issued three days later after a thorough investigation. Especially because these media had also buried it amid articles that led with Al-Dahdouh’s plight.

When the IDF eventually exposed evidence showing Hamza Al-Dahdouh’s name on an Islamic Jihad document, along with specific data identifying the other “journalist” as a Hamas commander, media outlets should have been quick to update their initial reports. They should have at least published a new, separate story leading with the new information.

But they didn’t.

Why were the media so quick to take as gospel the unsupported claims of a Qatari-owned propaganda channel, and ignore evidence pointing at their fallacy?

Is it because the evidence serves the “wrong” side in this conflict?

The author is a contributor to HonestReporting, a Jerusalem-based media watchdog with a focus on antisemitism and anti-Israel bias — where a version of this article first appeared.

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Brown University Investigating Threats of Violence Sent to Hillel Officials

More than 200 Brown University students gathered outside University Hall where roughly 40 students sat inside demanding the school divest from weapons manufacturers amid the Israel-Hamas war. Photo: Amy Russo / USA TODAY NETWORK via Reuters Connect

Two officials of Brown-RISD Hillel, a Jewish life  center serving both Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design, were sent “violent threats” early Sunday morning, according to a report by The Brown Daily Herald.

After being alerted of threats, which were sent via email, the university’s Department of Public Safety (DPS) conducted a search of Brown-RISD Hillel and determined there is “no evidence of any one-site threat.” DPS vice president Rodney Chatman told The Brown Daily Herald that “local, state, and federal authorities” are investigating the incident.

“This comes at an especially difficult time of distress on our campuses,” Brown University president Christina H. Paxson said in a statement addressing the incident. “Our students, faculty, and staff continue to grapple with the deaths of Israelis, Palestinians, and others in the wake of the October 7 attacks, as well as a despicable act of violence against a member of the Brown community here in the United States last November, and increases in reports of antisemitism, Islamophobia and other forms of hate.”

In Sunday’s statement President Paxson said that “robust” security measures will be implemented to protect Brown-RISD Hillel, as well as the officials who were threatened, from harm.

The incident is not the first antisemitic act of hatred since Hamas’ massacre across southern Israel on Oct. 7.

In December, the university’s Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity opened an investigation into an incident in which someone slipped a threatening note underneath the door of an off-campus apartment rented by Jewish students.

“Those who live for death will die by their own hand,” said the note, which, according to the Brown Daily Herald, matches lyrics from a song by an early 1980s punk band. The paper added that the note was found by an electrician, who brought it inside.

A similar incident occurred last November at a Brown-RISD Hillel. Additionally, in 2020, a swastika was graffitied in Brown’s Hegeman Hall. In 2017, another was found in a gender-neutral bathroom at RISD. It was drawn using human feces, according to the Brown Daily Herald.

Last week, President Paxson rejected the demands of anti-Zionist students who were participating in a hunger strike in an effort to force the Brown Corporation to vote on a boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) resolution against Israel and make other concessions.

The university has twice ordered the arrests of extremist anti-Zionists student protesters, who have held unauthorized demonstrations in administration buildings, sometimes occupying them for hours after being asked to leave. Over 40 were arrested in December while onlookers shouted “Shame on Brown, Shame on Brown!”

Follow Dion J. Pierre @DionJPierre.

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‘Free Palestine:’ Texas Church Shooter Suspected of Having Pro-Hamas Ideology

Genesse Ivonne Moreno, 36, shot a man at Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas, on February 12, 2024. Photo: Twitter

A woman who stormed a church in Houston, Texas, on Sunday with an AR-15 rifle and shot one person before being killed by police was apparently a Hamas supporter, according to details on the incident reported by CNN.

On Monday, the outlet reported that “Free Palestine” was written on the shooter’s rifle.

According to the Houston Chronicle, the shooter has since been identified as Genesse Ivonne Moreno, 36. The woman has an extensive criminal history which includes arrests for marijuana possession, assault, theft, and forgery.

On Sunday afternoon, Moreno walked into the Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas — an institution famous for being the church of charismatic Christian preacher Joel Osteen — with a child and a gun. Wearing a trench coat and a knapsack, she threatened to have explosives, according to multiple reports. Most of the worshipers in attendance were Hispanic and attending a Spanish language service.

Moreno shot one man, leaving him critically injured, and was shot and killed by Houston Police. A child was also shot during the incident, but police are still unsure of whether they or Moreno are responsible for doing it.

“I want to commend those officers. She had a long gun and it could have been a lot worse,”  Houston Police Chief Troy Finner said during a press conference later in the day.

An investigation of Moreno’s motives is ongoing.

Follow Dion J. Pierre @DionJPierre.

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London Theater Facing Legal Action After Comedy Show Turns Into ‘Antisemitic Rally’

British comedian Paul Currie. Photo: Instagram

A London theater is facing legal action after an Israeli man was hounded out of a comedy show on Saturday night by a comedian performing a one-man show that turned into what some audience members compared to an “antisemitic rally.”

A spokesperson for the UK’s Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) said the group was in touch with the Israeli man and other members of the audience who fled from the theater.

“What the Jewish audience members have recounted is atrocious, and we are working with them and our lawyers to ensure that those who instigated and enabled it are held to account,” the CAA spokesperson told London’s Evening Standard news outlet. “These allegations are of deeply disturbing discriminatory abuse against Jews. Comedians are rightly given broad latitude, but hounding Jews out of theaters is reminiscent of humanity’s darkest days, and must have no place in central London in 2024.”

The comedian, Paul Currie, had been performing a one-man show entitled “Shtoom” at London’s Soho Theater. Towards the end of his performance, he retrieved a Ukrainian and Palestinian flag and invited members to stand and applaud.

After the round of applause was over, Currie pointed to a man in the second row of the theater and quizzed him over why he had not stood up.

The unnamed man, an Israeli, replied, “I enjoyed your show until you brought out the Palestinian flag.” An infuriated Currie began screaming, “Leave my show now! Get out of my f—-ing show!” in response.

As the man and his partner rose to leave, accompanied by a handful of other shocked audience members, the assembled crowd began chanting “Get out” and “Free Palestine.”

In a written complaint to the theater over his treatment, the man wrote: ” Shaken and feeling threatened by the growing antagonism, we exited and tried to complain/ get some support from the front-of-house team at the theatre, who were not very sympathetic but did give us an email address to make a complaint. By this time, the show had ended and the audience started exiting, a number of whom were glaring at us aggressively and in a very threatening way. We all left the scene.”

He added: “Our friends later received a message from someone they knew who had also been at the show, saying that after we left, the situation became even more inflamed. What had been intended to be an evening of comedy turned out to be what felt like an antisemitic rally.”

The theater eventually apologized, issuing a statement expressing regret an “an incident that took place at our venue at the end of a performance of Paul Currie: Shtoom on Saturday 10 February, which has caused upset and hurt to members of audience attending and others.” It added: “We take this very seriously and are looking into the detail of what happened as thoroughly, as sensitively, and as quickly as we can. It is important to us that Soho theatre is a welcoming and inclusive place for all.”

Currie has remained largely silent since the incident, save for a post on Instagram which quoted Mexican poet Cesar A. Cruz saying: “Art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable.”  He then added: “If you were at my show last night… you’ll know.”

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