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Sunday, April 10, 2005


And So It Goes: The Media and Palestinian Deaths

Since it seems to be such a big deal what the teenagers were doing when they were shot by the IDF, now that Israeli officials have apologized (so far I've seen this reported in Ha'aretz and Al-Jazeera) I'm checking out some of the media coverage. The following appeared as the last six paragraphs of a twenty-five paragraph AP story by Mark Lavie which was about the going's on at Al-Aqsa Mosque today. The name of the witness is the name that was earlier reported as one of the murdered boys.
Thousands of mourners, led by gunmen firing in the air, buried the three Palestinian teens. Israelis and Palestinians offered widely varying accounts of the incident, the bloodiest there since the truce was declared.

Witness Ahmed al-Jazar, 14, said he and four classmates were playing soccer on the outskirts of Rafah on Saturday when one of the boys shot the ball close to a wall Israeli troops built between the patrol road and the Rafah camp. Two boys ran after the ball, while the others stayed near a partially demolished house about 35 yards from the wall.

"We heard the sound of shooting," al-Jazar said Sunday.

He said he told a friend next to him to stay down, but his friend ignored the advice.

"He told me, 'No, I want to look,'" al-Jazar said. "He got up ... and was shot in the chest."

The Israeli military said soldiers opened fire after they saw the teens sneaking into the no-go zone, suspecting they were arms smugglers
rdered boys.

CNN's coverage at 8:21 EDT led with this headline: Israel: 3 kids killed in smuggling effort. Not one Palestinian source was interviewed; only Israeli Defense Forces. The story still appears on its site at 10:45 PM German time although more information is buried in an Al-Aqsa story; the circumstances of the boys's murders are reported as "disputed," the favorite word of western journalists covering the occupied territories.
Reuters at 2:19 ET has as its head: "Sharon: Palestinian Mortar Fire Violates Truce"
The only mention of the murders: "The Israeli army said more than 70 mortars and rockets had been fired at Jewish settlements in Gaza since Saturday, afer Israeli soldiers killled three Palestinina youths in the coastal strip."

That's AP, CNN, and Reuters coverage for Sunday. In earlier posts today Ha'aretz and Al-Jazeera's coverage may be read. The U.K.'s Observer and Times had nothing and one line respectively about the murders. If I find anything out of the ordinary, I'll post more.

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