Using Journalism as a Cover to Target Israel
In the New York Times today, David Carr claims that Israel is “using war as cover to target journalists” in Gaza. Of course Carr fails to mention that the “journalists” in question were terrorists:
On the same day as the Waldorf event, three employees of news organizations were killed in Gaza by Israeli missiles. Rather than suggesting it was a mistake, or denying responsibility, an Israeli Defense Forces spokeswoman, Lt. Col. Avital Leibovich, told The Associated Press, “The targets are people who have relevance to terror activity.”
So it has come to this: killing members of the news media can be justified by a phrase as amorphous as “relevance to terror activity.” …
Mahmoud al-Kumi and Hussam Salama worked as cameramen for Al-Aqsa TV, which is run by Hamas and whose reporting frequently reflects that affiliation. They were covering events in central Gaza when a missile struck their car, which, according to Al-Aqsa, was clearly marked with the letters “TV.” (The car just in front of them was carrying a translator and driver for The New York Times, so the execution hit close to our organization.) And Mohamed Abu Aisha, director of the private Al-Quds Educational Radio, was also in a car when it was hit by a missile.
As Carr notes, Al-Aqsa is a Hamas-owned TV station. What he leaves out is that Al-Aqsa TV has also been designated a terrorist organization by the U.S. Treasury Department. So we already know these “cameramen” were working for a terrorist group.
In addition, the Free Beacon reports that “Hussam Salama,” one of the alleged cameramen mentioned in Carr’s article, is actually Muhammed Shamalah, a Hamas commander and head of its military training programs. In a November 20 blog post, the Israel Defense Forces recounted its successful attack against Shamalah, who had spray-painted “TV” on his car hood:
The “human shield” method, as it is commonly known, has forced the IDF to target seemingly non-military targets, resulting in some of the civilian casualties. It has also endangered all residents of the Gaza Strip who, without their consent, were unwittingly dragged into the conflict.
One such example came in today, when a senior Hamas operative was targeted while driving a press vehicle. Muhammed Shamalah, commander of Hamas forces in the southern Strip and head of the Hamas militant training programs, was targeted by an Israeli air strike while driving a car clearly labelled “TV”, indicating it to be a press vehicle, abusing the protection afforded to journalists.
Elder of Ziyon has more details on another “journalist” mentioned in the story, Mohamed Abu Aisha, who also appears to be an officer in Islamic Jihad.
Should Israel be expected to let any militant who paints “TV” on his car drive by under the radar? Samir Khan was the editor of al-Qaeda’s Inspire magazine until he was killed in a CIA drone strike, but the New York Times has yet to accuse the Obama administration of “using war as cover to target journalists.” Apparently, Israel is the only country that’s expected to treat terrorists-posing-as-reporters the same way it treats actual reporters.