Media watchdog HonestReporting released an investigative report late Wednesday that found journalists from leading news agencies, including The New York Times, AP, Reuters and CNN, joined members of the armed Hamas movement in the Gaza Strip on October 7 , to document the horrific events with their cameras.
“Among other things, the question arises as to whether the photographers knew about the intention to carry out the massacre in advance and how they got to the place so quickly. Did Hamas allow them to be there? Were these reporters allowed to enter Israel alongside the terrorists? Did the photographers inform their editors that they were accompanying terrorists in carrying out attacks on Israelis?” asked the authors of the article on the website HonestReporting?
Is it possible to assume that “journalists” just happened to appear early in the morning at the border without prior coordination with the terrorists? Or were they part of the plan?” the analysis also said.
An HonestReporting investigation documented that photographers took close-up photos of the abductions of civilians and soldiers, and even the lynching of one Israeli Defense Force (IDF) soldier. In addition, the website described how Eslaiah, a freelancer who also works for CNN, among others, photographed a burning Israeli tank and then captured members of Hamas entering Kibbutz Kfar Azza.
And the subsequent criticism after the publication of the text descended on the world media in Israel with tremendous speed. Israeli government spokesman Nitzan Chen wrote in a statement that Israel is demanding an explanation from Reuters and other news organizations regarding the HonestReporting article, saying what the report described “crosses all red lines, professional and moral.”
About hospitals in the Gaza Strip
Israel’s Directorate of Public Diplomacy issued a statement saying it views with “sternness” the phenomenon of journalists reporting on Hamas atrocities, calling them “complicit in crimes against humanity.”
The Jerusalem Journalists Association called on the relevant international media to launch a thorough investigation into the issues arising from this revelation.
“If indeed representatives of news agencies and major networks knew of the expected massacre in advance, this raises prima facie concerns of complicity in the crime or failure to prevent the killing,” said Israel’s Jerusalem Press Club (JPC).
“The investigation raises difficult ethical questions not only about the behavior of those on the ground, but also about the behavior of network and news agency management. The question is whether they knew of Hamas’s intention and yet gave it tacit approval,” the JPC statement continued.
However, some went almost to the limit when criticizing the media coverage of Hamas attacks on Israel. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s spokesman Ofir Gendelman on the network https://twitter.com/ofirgendelman/status/1722561334858961025 posted a video to which he wrote: “Palestinians are deceiving the international media and public opinion. Don’t get caught. See for yourself how they fake injuries and evacuate ‘injured’ civilians, all in front of the cameras.”
The video, which Gendelman described as evidence of Palestinian forgeries, was actually created as an art clip. “Doesn’t (Gendelman – editor’s note) see that there is a guy playing the violin next to the injured girl?” asked Šehada on https://twitter.com/muhammadshehad2/status/1722601068037550398 X.
The world agencies deny all the accusations
“The AP had no prior information about the Oct. 7 attack,” spokeswoman Nicole Meyer said in a statement.
Testimony of a woman held by Hamas
Israeli hostage Yocheved Lifšic testified a day after her release about how she was abducted by Palestinian Hamas terrorists and also described two weeks of life in captivity. According to her, it seems that her captors treated her right in Gaza. But they continue to detain her husband and nothing is known about his fate.
“AP’s job is to capture news and footage of events happening around the world at any given moment, even if they are horrific and involve casualties. The AP uses photos from outside contributors around the world, including Gaza,” Meyer added.
Even the Reuters agency denies that it knew in advance about the Hamas attack on Israel. In a statement Thursday responding to the HonestReporting report, the agency denied any suggestion that it had prior knowledge of the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas on Israeli civilians and soldiers.
“We are aware of the HonestReporting report and the allegations made against two freelance photographers involved in Reuters coverage of the October attack. Reuters categorically denies that it knew about the attack in advance, or that we deployed journalists in the ranks of Hamas on October 7,” Reuters wrote.
“Reuters obtained photographs from two independent Gaza photographers who were at the border on the morning of October 7, with whom it had no prior relationship. The photos released by Reuters were taken two hours after Hamas fired rockets across southern Israel and more than 45 minutes after Israel said the militants had crossed the border. Reuters journalists were not in the places mentioned in the HonestReporting article,” the agency explained.
The Euro-Med Monitor website came to the same opinion. “These journalists crossed the border along with other civilians about 3-4 hours after the Hamas attack. They were not ‘deployed’ by Hamas and did not know about the attack in advance,” wrote X Šehada on the network.
The New York Times website had not responded to the event at the time of publication of this article.