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Media Analyses





Gaza Derangement Syndrome: Anne Barnard


Tweets by reporters can offer a fascinating and sometimes embarrassing glimpse into their mind set, biases and agenda. Indeed, embarrassment is why Jodi Rudoren, the New York Times Jerusalem Bureau Chief, has had to have her Tweets and Facebook postings supervised by her editors.

Well the Times might have to hire additional social media minders, after another of their Middle East reporters just put her foot in it. That foot would belong to Anne Barnard, the Times Beirut Bureau Chief, who has been reporting from Gaza.
 
Barnard, an experienced Middle East hand, who also reported from Beirut when she was with Boston Globe, repeated a brilliant suggestion from one of her twitter followers that Netanyahu & Mashaal should fight a duel, "just put the two of them in a small room with machetes":

And this was not even a hasty re-tweet, nor a copy-and-paste job – she actually rewrote the tweet, replacing "between" with "betw," and thus had time to think about it before sending it out:
 
 
 
Though she did later delete her own tweet, it's troubling that she thought it worth sharing with her almost 20,000 followers. Does Barnard really believe that the conflict between Hamas and Israel is a personal problem between Benjamin Netanyahu, the elected leader of a democratic country, and Khalid Meshaal, the leader of a genocidal terrorist group? Does she think that if Netanyahu and Meshaal were replaced, all would be good? Is she unfamiliar with the Hamas charter, which calls for the destruction of Israel and the killing of all Jews?

If she somehow has failed to read it, here are the key portions of The Covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement, which call for exterminating all Jews and liberating the entirety of Palestine (which it identifies as a holy "Islamic Waqf," for Moslems only):

The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. Only the Gharkad tree, (evidently a certain kind of tree) would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews." (Article 7)

The Islamic Resistance Movement believes that the land of Palestine is an Islamic Waqf consecrated for future Moslem generations until Judgement Day. It, or any part of it, should not be squandered: it, or any part of it, should not be given up. Neither a single Arab country nor all Arab countries, neither any king or president, nor all the kings and presidents, neither any organization nor all of them, be they Palestinian or Arab, possess the right to do that. Palestine is an Islamic Waqf land consecrated for Moslem generations until Judgement Day. (Article 11)

Does she wonder why Hamas refused a ceasefire weeks ago, only to accept the same terms after three weeks of bloodletting? Has it occurred to her that Hamas really doesn't mind civilian casualties in Gaza at all, and does its best to cause them in Israel? Has it occurred to her that by hiding their rockets and mortars and weapons warehouses and "fighters" and leaders behind civilians, Hamas was guaranteeing civilian casualties, but picked a fight with Israel anyhow? Has it occurred to her to ask Hamas leaders why that might be?

And if it hasn't occurred to her to ask these or similar questions, can she really call herself a reporter?


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