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May 29, 2018 8:03 am

What Kind of Journalists Don’t Correct Egregious Mistakes? TIME and Karl Vick

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A Palestinian rioter on the Israel-Gaza Strip border, May 4, 2018. Photo: Reuters / Ibraheem Abu Mustafa.

I was a little behind on my magazine reading, and recently read Karl Vick’s description of the “Great Return March” riots in TIME. He had adequate time to correct his mistakes before the issue was published, but there is no correction in the magazine or even online.

Let’s do a little digging. Vick wrote:

In Jerusalem, the ceremonial opening of the new U.S. Embassy proceeded at a stately pace, President Trump’s daughter Ivanka unveiling a plaque that announced not only the new address for U.S. representation in Israel but also a new, snugger alignment with the host nation. A few miles away, cameras captured the chaos as Israeli soldiers methodically cut down some 2,700 Palestinians, 60 fatally, as they marched toward the fence that separates Israel from the Gaza Strip.

Even Gaza’s Health Ministry never claimed that Israel shot 2,700 people. It said that some 3,000 were injured — half of them from tear gas. Vick made an assumption and he was wrong.

Furthermore, the people who were killed were not shot while “marching” — they were either trying to cut the fence or directing people to set fires, hurl firebombs, or break through the fence.

At press time, it was known that most of the dead were Hamas militants in civilian dress. TIME didn’t update the article between online and print publication with this critical information, nor is it there now.

That patch of land, which hugs the Mediterranean Sea between Israel and Egypt, is home to some 2 million Palestinians, most of whose families once lived on land that is today Israel. They are stubborn refugees with no prospect of return, physically confined in an area only twice the size of the District of Columbia and with no prospect of improvement. Last year a Gaza home had four to six hours of electricity a day and water for six to eight hours every fourth day. Youth unemployment is 60%.

They are not refugees. There is only one definition of refugee under the Refugee Convention. Just because UNRWA calls them refugees does not make them refugees.

Beyond the absurdity of calling great-grandchildren of those who mostly voluntarily left their homes “refugees,” we can add that from their own perspective, their families were from Palestine and they now live in Palestine. So how can they be considered refugees?

Vick cleverly doesn’t directly blame Israel for Gaza’s power issues, but the implication is clear. Yet the Gaza power plant can run at full capacity if the Arabs would give Gazans the fuel. They haven’t.

There have been corrections in the two weeks since this was written.

Elder of Ziyon has been blogging about Israel and the Arab world for a really long time now. He also controls the world, but deep down you already knew that.

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