NY Times blood libel

On Shavuot, Paper's lies pierce the fog of war


In its Sunday newsaper distributed on Shavuot, the New York Times furthered the Palestinian narrative that  an Israeli combatant may have deliberately assassinated Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh and that Israel has sought to block an honest inquiry.

This, despite the lengthy editorial’s own admission that the Palestinians were unwilling to cooperate with Israel in an open inquiry and that “the world still knows very little about who is responsible for her death.”

In a combat zone, innocents are sometimes casualties, and war correspondents know the risks. Whether Abu Akleh was hit by a Palestinian bullet or an Israeli bullet is of interest, but not necessary determinative of guilt. Only if the journalist was deliberately targeted by Israeli command (or by a rogue combatant) would action be required against those responsible.

“Democracies require a free press as a prerequisite for informed self-governance,” the Times writes. “Israel needs to ensure the safety of journalists in the country and in areas that it ocupies, to ensure the safety of its own democracy.”

Not only is this something Israel understands, but the foreign press working in Israel knows that Israel understands it. Consider this from the Times editorial:

“Ms. Abu Akleh’s prominence as a journalist and her American passport have served to focus broad attention on her death. But scores of other journalists lose their lives without public notice. According to a database maintained by the nonprofit Committee to Protect Journalists, 511 journalists were killed from 1992 to 2022 in crossfire or on dangerous assignments, 347 of them in wars.”

How many in Israel? How many in the Arab world? There are far more foreign correspondents in Israel than in any Arab country. Israel may not like the journalists, but it resepcts their role and especially their lives.