Abu Ayish

February 2, 2004 13:36 by

IDF action today:

Israeli soldiers killed four Palestinian militants, including a one-armed leader of the militant Islamic Jihad group, in an intense gun battle in a Gaza refugee camp Monday.

The one-armed ‘militant’ was Yasser Abu Ayish. How did he lose his other arm (and two legs)?

Associated Press: ‘Abu Ayish’s legs and arm were blown off last year when a rocket he was building exploded prematurely.’

But Reuters reported:

A Palestinian militant who lost his legs and an arm to an Israeli tank shell a year ago battled soldiers who came to arrest him on Monday in a Gaza Strip raid that ended with him being killed along with three other gunmen…Yasser Abu al-Aesh, a senior local leader of the Islamic Jihad group who lost three of his limbs and four comrades a year ago when a tank shell hit his rocket-firing squad in Rafah.

Let’s assume Reuters is right that Abu Ayish was injured by an IDF shell — to bury the fact that he was actively firing rockets into Israel at that time is partisan reporting that sacrifices facts for drama. Note also how Reuters cranks up the near-heroism of the one-armed ‘militant’ ‘battling’ soldiers.

We reiterate our action item from the last HR communique: Encourage your local paper to stop carrying Reuters articles on the Mideast.

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