Monday, May 3, 2010

News not fit to print

Joseph Shatton at The American Spectator wants you to know about some big news that the mainstream media has not seen fit to print:
If the governments of Israel and Jordan joined forces to save the life of a three-year old Palestinian child -- and if the three-year old child happened to be the daughter of a top Hamas official -- that would be big news, right? It would be covered by all the major American newspapers, right? Oprah might even talk about it, right?

If you answered "right" to any of the above, dear reader, you are living on another planet.

Here is a brief summary of the story, as reported in the April 27 issue of the Hebrew-language weekly, Sha'ar LaMathil:

The young daughter of Fathi Hamad, one of the heads of Hamas and its government in the Gaza Strip, was in urgent need of medical attention in a Jordanian hospital. King Abdallah of Jordan requested the Prime Minister and Defense Minister to facilitate the girl's transfer to a hospital in Amman.

Israel acceded to the request. A Red Cross ambulance transferred the girl from a hospital in Gaza to Barzilai Hospital in Ashkelon, and from there a Jordanian helicopter transferred her to Amman. The heads of Hamas ordered all the Gaza Strip media not to publish the story.
This is just a bare-bones version of what happened. A more detailed account might have mentioned that the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon was a frequent target of Hamas rocket attacks; that the child received emergency medical treatment at Barzilai Hospital to stabilize her condition before being flown on to Amman; that she is just one of hundreds of Gazans who receive medical care in Israel; that her father, Hamas' Interior Minister and a leading advocate of suicide bombing, publicly thanked King Abdallah, but omitted any mention of Israel; and that the Jordanian press also left out Israel's role. But let's not get bogged down in petty details.
In lieu of acknowledgement or god-forbid thanks, Hamas issued an animated video that threatens the life of Staff Sgt. Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier who has been held captive in Gaza since 2006, when he was seized in Israel, near its border with the Palestinian territory.  From The New York Times:
The video, which was posted on the Web site of the Hamas Qassam Brigades and on YouTube, uses the real voice of the captured solider — from a previously released “proof of life” video — over a computer-generated animation that shows his father wandering forlorn past billboards showing statements from Israeli leaders promising to free his son.

At the end of the video, the elder Mr. Shalit is shown witnessing the return of his son’s coffin — before waking with a scream to realize that this scene had just been a bad dream and his son is still alive. The video then ends with the words, “There is still hope.”
Oh, by the way, the Times did see fit to publish the English-version of the Hamas video on its website.

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