Journalist Corrects a Gaza Lie With Another Lie

HonestReporting previously addressed the New Statesman‘s almost 4,000 word report from Gaza by Donald Macintyre, which graphically illustrated the unreliability of Palestinian casualty reports. The report included this paragraph:

At least Yasser did not suffer the fate of another single survivor brought into al-Shifa Hospital, ten-year-old Mohammed Badran. He was blinded in an Israeli air strike but at the hospital he seemed unaware that his entire family had been killed when a missile destroyed their home at the Nuseirat refugee camp. Not understanding the nature of his injury, he repeatedly asked staff, “Why have you switched the lights off?”

However, at the very end of Macintyre’s piece is an update which tells us that Badran’s “entire family” were not, in fact, killed in that air strike:

Update, 12 August: Mohammed Badran’s family turned out not to have been killed in the strike on his home, as had been reported here. In the confusion of a packed Shifa Hospital, the doctors treating him in the burns unit thought he had lost his parents and all his siblings. In fact, although seven of the Badrans’ nine children were also injured in the attack, including their 17-year-old daughter Eman, who is now also in Shifa with serious leg injuries, Mohammed’s parents Tagorid and Nidal Badran both survived to take care of him. That is until Nidal, 44, a policeman, was killed in another air strike, this time on the Qassam mosque in Nusseirat refugee camp, in the early hours of Saturday, 9 August, as he prepared to attend dawn prayers. On 12 August, I was told that Mohammed was being referred to a Spanish hospital for treatment.

Elder of Ziyon investigated further. This is what he discovered (republished courtesy of Elder of Ziyon):

So the bloodthirsty Israelis, not satisfied with only injuring members of this upstanding family, ruthlessly murdered the patriarch as he was innocently preparing for dawn prayers.

However, Nidal was not at the mosque for dawn prayers. He was there at 3:30 AM meeting together with two other senior Hamas members, as my story earlier today showed. It is clear that the destroyed mosque held some other secrets that Hamas was trying to keep reporters away from.

The three terrorists killed in the mosque were Nidal Badran, Maaz Zayed and Tariq Jadallah.

Suddenly, the targeting of the Badran house seems a little less random, doesn’t it?

By the way, the Arabic media never refers to the three Hamas members killed at the mosque as being anything other than civilians. PCHR and AP mentions that they were militants but doesn’t mention their names.

Macintyre mentioned Nidal Badran’s death in an earlier story for the Independent, describing the strike this way:

Israeli bombing this morning destroyed one of the largest mosques in central Gaza, killing at least three Palestinians preparing for dawn prayers, including the father of a severely injured ten year old boy blinded in an earlier strike on their home a week ago.


Two bulldozers are searching through the mountain of rubble left by the F16 air strike on the Al Qassam mosque in the heart of the crowded Nusseirat refugee camp for the last of four men who had been in a room set aside for customary washing before prayers when the bomb struck shortly after 3am.


Among the three bodies recovered was that of Nidal Badran, 44, who had been desperately hoping that his son Mohammed, who is currently in Gaza City’s Shifa Hospital suffering from serious cranio-facial injuries, including the loss of his sight, would be transferred for urgently needed surgery to Europe.

The PCHR article describing the men killed as being “members of an armed group” was already published at that time, so Macintyre did not bother to do even the least amount of fact checking about the terrorist Nidal Badran before describing him sympathetically – twice.

Macintyre did report that Israel issued a warning before destroying the mosque, but that it did not reach the Hamas members in time.

And it wasn’t as if Macintyre didn’t have a clue. He knew Badran was a policeman, and every decent reporter in Gaza should know that the vast majority of policemen have traditionally also been members of the Al Qassam Brigades.

Just another media whitewash of Hamas.

Oh, and check this out:

{T]he dead man’s brother Kemal Badran, 45, who works for the information office of the UN refugee agency UNRWA, said that his brother had had 20 years’ service as a policeman in Gaza… “He was a religious man,” he added, saying that he frequently went early to the mosque before dawn prayers to wash and read the Koran. “Maybe [the Israelis] did not know that there would be anyone at the mosque at this time,” he said.

PCHR clearly knew that Nidal was a terrorist…and so did his UNRWA brother.

You cannot trust anything Gazans tell a reporter. Too bad reporters are so eager to believe the lies.

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Image: CC BY-SA HonestReporting, flickr/Surian Soosay