Associated Press and Others Obscure Palestinian Incitement That Encourages Mob Violence
Gaza’s terrorist rulers, Hamas, issued a call to Palestinians on Wednesday to come out in the “hundreds of thousands to protect our nation and our mosque,” adding that there are “Zionist threats to invade the Al-Aqsa Mosque on Friday and conduct sacrifices.”
Hamas’ deputy political chief, Saleh al-Arouri, also encouraged Palestinians to take to the streets in the West Bank town of Silwad, where Israel arrested four men accused of belonging to a terror cell and planning attacks in coming days, saying: “We call on all our nation to mobilize and support Silwad and all areas of conflict.”
Meanwhile, the Palestinian Authority (PA)’s leading faction, Fatah, joined this clarion call on Thursday, telling the Palestinian public to “confront IDF forces and settlers throughout the West Bank.”
Yet nary a word of these incitements to violence, which are all too frequent from Palestinian leaders, found their way into most mainstream media outlets’ reporting of the mob violence that erupted during Israeli terror raids in the West Bank over the past week (see here, here, and here).
The Associated Press even quoted PA president Mahmoud Abbas as blaming Israel for the growing unrest that has erupted in the West Bank, as Israel conducted raids following the spate of deadly terror attacks carried out by Palestinians:
The Israeli raids have faced violent protests by Palestinians, some of them armed or throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails at forces, according to the military. They have sparked a warning by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who accused Israel of destabilizing the West Bank, saying the situation “has become dangerous and sensitive and is rapidly deteriorating.”
The AP article continues:
While Israel has sought to lower the flames by moving ahead with a plan to ease restrictions on Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, Israeli media reported leaders are expected to decide whether to restrict movement for Palestinians out of the West Bank during the weeklong Passover festival, as it has done in previous years.
That would prevent thousands of worshippers from reaching a key Jerusalem mosque, a frequent flashpoint for violence, during Ramadan. [emphasis added]
As HonestReporting has previously detailed at length, the reason why the Al-Aqsa Mosque has become a powder keg is never explained.
The fact is, Hamas repeatedly spreads the lie that the Muslim holy site is being threatened by Israel.
When Israeli forces killed Palestinian gunman Ra’ad Hazem last week following the Fatah-linked terror attack in Tel Aviv that left three Israeli civilians dead and injured many more, the terror group described the violence as a “natural and legitimate response” to Israeli “crimes” at Al-Aqsa.
Palestinian Islamic Jihad declared the bloodshed a “clear message to the occupation that it must stop its incursions into” the Muslim shrine.
Numerous other media outlets also refer to the potential for violence occurring in Jerusalem’s Old City, but fail to link this to a Palestinian leadership that encourages armed mobs to “protect” it.
For example, an article from The Guardian about the raids states:
The clashes have come during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and ahead of the start of Passover on Friday, an overlap that can heighten tensions around sacred sites in Jerusalem’s Old City.
Again, the reasons for these “tensions” are never detailed.
Incidentally, the same article opens with a vague reference to the destruction of a “religious site,” which the publication also blames for enflaming “tensions.”
This, of course, refers to the wrecking of Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus by Palestinian vandals, which, as HonestReporting noted, was due to a failure by the Palestinian Authority to protect the Jewish holy site that is located in its control within Area A of the West Bank.
Yet, when The Guardian eventually elaborates on the desecration that occurred towards the end of the article, the reader is not even told that it was Palestinian vandals who perpetrated it:
The holy site, where Jews say the Biblical patriarch Joseph is buried, is a frequent flashpoint between Israelis and Palestinians. It was partially destroyed in 2000 during a Palestinian uprising and also torched in 2015.
Palestinian authorities consider the wider site an Islamic archaeological monument where a revered cleric was buried two centuries ago.
France24 also refers to escalating “tensions” without ever explaining there is a Palestinian leadership that foments the unrest:
The tensions have escalated as Muslims mark Ramadan, which this year converges with major Jewish and Christian holidays. In the coming week as Passover and Easter commence, tens of thousands from the three faiths are expected to stream into Jerusalem’s Old City, the emotional heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and a frequent flashpoint for violence.
News outlets have a duty to give their readers all the facts, which means not only reporting on the masses of Palestinians armed with rocks, Molotov cocktails, and other projectiles, who have been congregating on the streets and attacking Israeli soldiers, but the reason for this violence.
By obscuring the Palestinian incitement that all too often leads to bloodshed, the media treats such violent, criminal behavior as a natural state of affairs.
In fact, it’s the result of a population that is being radicalized by its leaders.