Sunday, March 18th | 2 Nisan 5778


Be in the know!

Get our exclusive daily news briefing.

December 31, 2014 5:46 pm

New York Times Chooses Gaza Child to Symbolize All Child Deaths in War This Year

avatar by Elder of Ziyon

Email a copy of "New York Times Chooses Gaza Child to Symbolize All Child Deaths in War This Year" to a friend

Here is a scan of a page from the New York Times Magazine this past weekend, using a Gaza child named Tala Akram al-Atawi, who was killed over the summer, to symbolize all children killed in war:

From looking at this page, one would get the impression that except for South Sudan, more children were killed in Gaza than in any other conflict this year, and that more than 20% of all child deaths – the very large-font 2,500 – were caused by Israel.

When you look a little closer, you see that the Times didn’t bother to even estimate the number of children killed in Syria or Pakistan. Which is very interesting, given that this article was published soon after 132 children were brutally murdered in a Pakistan school in a single day. They weren’t killed accidentally, not as part of a larger operation: they were targeted for death.

But none of those children merit having the New York Times write about the anguish of their families or their doctors.

The Syria Observatory for Human Rights counted 251 children killed in Syria – in October alone. Another152 in November. From April through July, more than 1,000 children were killed. It seems a reasonable estimate of more than 2,500 children killed in Syria this year alone, making the “2500” graphic a joke. It is well over double that number just including Pakistan and Syria, and publishing even a low estimate would have made the story much more effective – if the goal of the story was to show how widespread children’s deaths were.

While the 538 killed in Gaza is probably accurate and may even be high (there were some 17 year olds killed who were voluntary militants), the other numbers are ridiculously low. In South Sudan, between 50,000 and 100,000 people were killed this year – so chances are very good that far, far more than 600 children were killed. it is not out of the realm of possibility that closer to 6,000 were killed.

InIraq, some 16,000 civilians were killed this year. Historically, children have been about 9% of the civilian casualties. So it is reasonable to estimate that closer to 1,500 children were killed this year in Iraq, instead of “416.”

The NYTimes could have provided estimates, or even a low estimate, if the goal was to highlight how horrible the problem of children in war zones is.

It gets worse – because the NYT only chose certain conflicts to bother to mention. The UN lists more than 20 nations that have seen children killed or recruited as soldiers over the past couple of years – as opposed to the NYT’s 8 nations.

So why would the New York Times put up this gigantic graphic of the number “2,500” when the actual number of children killed this year from war is probably closer to (and possibly much higher than) 10,000?

Here’s a guess.

Anne Barnard had a great, tear-jerker of a story about a Gaza girl. She didn’t want to highlight it in the end of year issue without any context because CAMERA would start a letter writing campaign about their anti-Israel bias. So the Times decided to do a half-assed job of pretending that Tala al-Atawi is somehow representative of the children who have been beheaded in Iraq and Syria, raped, and slaughtered in so many other countries.

No one, outside of Hamas and its supporters, is happy that Tala Akram al-Atawi was killed. She was not a target and Israelis don’t celebrate her death.. If you are going to write a story about the horrors of war for children, in a world where children are being recruited as soldiers and targeted by crazed Islamists, she is a very poor example.

But if the real goal is to demonize Israel – and to make a half hearted attempt to hide that demonization from behind a flurry of artificially low casualty numbers from other conflicts – then the New York Times succeeded quite well.

Share this Story: Share On Facebook Share On Twitter Email This Article

Let your voice be heard!

Join the Algemeiner
  • Amir Epstein

    This article is upsetting for a few reasons. The obvious one is that many children have lost their lives. Most by the hands of religious fanatics. The religion ofcourse being the one that the NYT has sympathy for, no matter their flaws. But what is just as upsetting, is that the inaccuracies presented as fact, which everyone can agree is incredibly biased against Israel, forces pro Israel activists to fight over the number of Palestinians that were killed by Israel, which only makes us look insensitive, and petty. Any anti zionist half wit can argue, look at what these people are fighting over! It becomes so easy to criticize Israel for pointing out the numbers as wrong, because it makes us look like we are bargaining children’s lives. The focus needs to remain on the biased, vilification of Israel, even if it puts us in a position where we look insensitive and careless for those Palestinians children’s lives.

  • It is not fair to blame Israel for everything. They are not the ones that are beheading children/people for their religion. Israel is only fighting for it’s survival just the same as any other nation would. Of course Israel is going to defend itself in the cross war of fighting. And of course killing will be involved. But Israel is not to blame for the mess in the Middle East.

  • F-K the NY Times. The self hating Jewish owners smell worse than rotten fish.

  • Ken Kelso

    What the Times didn’t tell you.
    Hamas Killed 160 Palestinian Children to Build Tunnels
    By Myer Freimann
    July 25, 2014

  • susan goodman

    Glad I cancelled my subscription because of their biased reporting.

  • Jenny Bee

    Why am I not astonished that no context is provided for the “child death” count in Gaza, where as the NYT well knows, Hamas started a genocidal war against Israel. Moreover that many of those children were killed due to that rocket war being launched from civilian areas and some of those deaths were due directly, to Hamas fire. And should we note that civilians were not allowed to leave the area where Hamas were firing rockets at Israel, as they were threatened with their lives if they did.

  • I choose the NYT to symbolize the death of journalism

  • Lauren Goldman

    A large part of what we are seeing is the anti-Semitism which has been pent up everywhere, since WWII, exploding and using this summer’s war of defense against hamas as a cover. I am 69, and the current state of affairs reminds me of Holocaust survivors’ descriptions of the 1930s; increasing attacks on us, and little if any consequences for the attackers, if not blaming us somehow for being attacked.

    Media such as NYT even took on face value a photo from hamas, showing dead children in a house and passing it off as a ‘palestinian’ family. In reality, it was the Folger family which was massacred by arabs. They were so sure that what they presented would be uncritically received that they even the mezuzah in the picture looking through the door into the children’s bedroom. This oversight was never mentioned.

  • ruven golan

    Hey Joe – Why do you think Israel fires shells into Gaza?
    For fun? U f..king idiot.

  • Of course NYT is biased and anti Israel. It takes every opportunity to demonise Israel.It wont miss a single one. The NYT should be dragged through main Journals for this attitude. Like the Washington post and others of likewise importance.Is there no competing press in the US that would take care of this matter?

  • Afonso

    Why is the incredibly powerful Jewish community in the US so shy in showing the biased reporting of the NYT ? Afraid of its very short-minded but – oh well ! – “liberal” jewish reporters ?

  • Dear Elder of Ziyon

    An excellent article. Many thanks indeed for your research. This article should be sent to as many media as possible.

    • What’s amazing is the United States has killed over 54 million children by abortion. Since Roe vs. Wade in 1973 the war against the unborn continues. The most dangerous place for a child today is in it’s mother’s womb! But nobody ever seems to report about this. As for the NY Times I quit reading it years ago. If there were still out-houses it would be good for only what the old mail-order catalogs were used for.

      • Never mind your non-contextual display of a pathological need to turn women into human Petri dishes.

        The bottom line is this: If women-hating jerks like you had to face the dangers and rigors of pregnancy labor and childbirth, you’d be doing everything possible to make sure one could find M&M’s in plain, peanut and morning-after-pill flavors at every candy counter in the world!

        Next time save your misogyny for an appropriate thread.

  • Mark


  • Robert Davis

    Why should Israel symbolize ALL of this planet’s problems? because the world wants Israel as a SCAPEGOAT it can kill and get the feeling that so doing all of this planet’s ills are gone! Still the question remains : why Israel? because its leaders are the DUMBEST in the world and accept to play this role! they do everything needed to put Israel in the exactly RIGHT conditions to get the role! For example instead of expelling arabs in 3 days they prefer to keep arguing for 66 years already now until they come to grips with ww3!!! This could be called HOW TO BRING ABOUT A WW FROM A MOLEHILL.

  • Michael Garfinkel

    The Times continues to earn its reputation as a Jew-hating, left wing rag.

  • Paddy OConnor

    Does that figure include the 200 children murdered by Hamas building their terror tunnels?
    Hamas admits to 160 killed to 2012 and so another 40 up to 2014 is a reasonable estimate.

  • steven L

    The NYT, the Mass media US antisemitic flagship.Its European siamese is the Guardian and for good form the BBC on the waves.

  • Shalom-Hillel

    Excellent analysis of what the NY Times is guilty of — yet again.
    Devious and despicable.



    • ahuva goldshmidt

      Spkiruth!! wow!! what are you on??? (apparently CAPS!)
      get an education!! it’ll do you good!
      (at least- it might improve your grammar!)… 😉

      • Tamar

        Dear Ahuva, you demand too much. Don’t try to confuse him with facts, his is the truth.

  • joe

    happy or not, she was killed by israel. that’s a fact.

  • Robert B Geller

    So please tell me, once again, why do so many American Jews continue to support the New York Times?

    • ruven golan

      The Western Jew has a diaspora mentality – compliant and cowardly in the name of humanity,maybe the Jew hating public will let them live

  • My analysis is as stated in the final paragraph: middle-class, white, so-called liberals only protest about Israel, so any global story has to invert reality and highlight the Jewish state so as to fit their prejudices.