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MSM Whitewash Israel's Assassination of Noted Journalist Shireen Abu Akleh

Written by Subject: Israel - Palestine

MSM Whitewash Israel's Assassination of Noted Journalist Shireen Abu Akleh

by Stephen Lendman

US/Western MSM operate as press agents for wealth, power, privilege, imperial wars against invented enemies and nations free from US control.

They support US/Western crimes of war and against humanity, falsely blaming them on nations attacked and their leadership.

The same goes for supporting apartheid Israel, ignoring the worst of its crimes against defenseless Palestinian civilians.

It's no surprise that they refused to condemn Israel's targeted assassination of Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.

Reporting on her death Wednesday, the NYT practically absolved Israel, saying:

"(S)he was killed…by gunfire in the West Bank."

"(S)hot in the head in the West Bank city of Jenin," the Times quoted Israel's IDF tweet, falsely saying:

"Palestinian armed gunfire" killed her — a bald-faced Big Lie.

Most of the Times' report was biographical, including that she'll be

"be buried on Friday in Jerusalem in a cemetery next to her mother."

Not a word by the Times laying blame where it belongs, no condemnation of what had the earmarks of an Israeli targeted assassination to silence a critic.

And this WaPo whitewash report:

"Israeli officials said Shireen Abu Akleh was killed in an exchange of gunfire, but said they had not determined who fired the fatal shot (sic).

Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett was quoted, saying:

Israel Defense Forces were conducting counterterrorism operations in Jenin (sic).

During the operation, "armed Palestinians shot in an inaccurate, indiscriminate and uncontrolled manner (sic)."

"Our forces from the IDF returned fire as accurately, carefully and responsibly as possible (sic)." 

"Sadly (sic), Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was killed in the exchange (sic)."

Likely by pre-planned targeting, she was assassinated to silence her.

And this from the WSJ:

"Israeli and Palestinian authorities provided conflicting accounts of the death of 51-year-old Shireen Abu Akleh, a well-known journalist noted for her coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict."

Israeli war minister Benny Gantz's Big Lie was quoted, falsely saying:

He saw "footage of indiscriminate shooting (sic) by Palestinians (he falsely called) terrorists (sic)."

Their gunfire "likely hit the journalist (sic)."

Bennett defied reality in similar fashion saying:

There's a "significant possibility" that Palestinian gunfire killed Abu Akleh (sic).

And this from AP News:

Israel claims that "Abu Akleh (was) killed by stray fire from Palestinians (sic)."

CNN quoted IDF chief of staff Aviv Kochavi's Big Lie, falsely claiming that it's "not possible" to know from what direction Abu Akleh was lethally shot (sic).

According to National Pentagon Radio (NPR):

"Israel says it's possible Palestinian gunmen shot her (sic), but says it will investigate (sic)."

There's plenty about Al Jazeera to criticize, notably it's one-sided coverage of US/Western imperial wars and bashing of nations free from their control.

An exception to the rule is its coverage of all things Israel and long-suffering Palestinians.

The broadcaster's longtime journalist, Shireen Abu Akleh, played a major role in accurately reporting of events in Occupied Palestine.

Al Jazeera justifiably slammed US/Western media for their biased coverage of her death — what appears to have been a targeted Israeli assassination, saying:

MSM "ignored Israel's role in Abu Akleh's death," adding:

"(C)ommentators and social media users criticize Western media outlets for 'whitewashed' reporting that appeared to shy away from mentioning that Israeli forces had killed the seasoned reporter."

Eyewitnesses of her killing laid blame where it belongs.

Yet MSM "avoid(ed) implicating Israel in the killing, despite assertions by Al Jazeera and witnesses who were with her that (she was) killed by Israeli forces."

As Western media began reporting on what happened, "social media users criticized organizations for, as one Twitter user said, their 'unbelievable' coverage of the story."

Jewish Voice for Peace political director, Beth Miller, slammed the NYT for headlining: Abu Akleh "dies at 51" — with no mention of Israeli responsibility.

"Shireen Abu Akleh was shot and killed by an Israeli sniper while reporting on an Israeli military raid of a refugee camp," Miller tweeted, adding:

" 'Dies at 51.' Unbelievable, NYT."

Co-director of NYU Law's Human Rights and Privatization Project, Bassam Khawaja, tweeted:

" 'Dies at 51' is a really strange way to say a journalist was (lethally) shot in the head."

AP News was slammed flor saying that Abu Akleh "was killed by gunfire" — without laying blame where it belongs.

Hamad Bin Khalifa University Professor of Middle East studies, Marc Owen Jones, said the following:

Israel is "used to managing these crisis situations in which they kill Palestinian citizens or journalists." 

"So, what they have done is already had a narrative, and that narrative is that there's ambiguity about the killing of Shireen." 

"And in this case, there is a possibility that it could have been Palestinians."

"We know this is implausible, however. This narrative was put out very early."

"If they can muddy the waters around the death of Shireen by possibly getting newspapers in the international sphere to suggest that she was killed by Palestinians, they have been successful."

Along with US MSM, the UK owned and controlled BBC, the London Guardian and other UK media feature Israel's "version of events very high up in their reporting," Jones added.

The same pattern applies to crimes of war, against humanity and other criminality that US/Western regimes are responsible for.

Most often, victims are blamed, not perpetrators.

A Final Comment

UK-based Sky News headlined the following on Thursday:

"Shireen Abu Akleh: Thousands turn out for funeral of Al Jazeera journalist killed during Israeli military raid," saying:

"Journalists who were with her in the West Bank city of Jenin said Israeli forces fired at them even though they were wearing 'press' vests and clearly identifiable as reporters."

"Her body was carried through the streets after the killing — with the bulletproof vest on top of the coffin."

The above is as close to reality as MSM are likely to go in reporting on Israel and US/Western ruling regimes — with regard to their invented enemies.