UPDATED: CAMERA Staff, Members Prompt NPR Correction

Updated March 29, 2004

CAMERA staff and members prompted an NPR correction concerning the extent of destruction incurred by the Jenin refugee camp in the 2002 Israeli operation.Ombudsman Jeffrey Dvorkin discusses the error and correction on the network’s Web site. A CAMERA staff  member provided NPR with a European Union statistic from a United Nations report disproving McCarthy’s claim that the camp had been “largely destroyed.” Jeffrey Dvorkin’s March 24 commentary, which includes a letter from CAMERA member Nigel Paneth, follows:

Jenin: ‘Largely Destroyed?’

In a March 16 report on a Palestinian film festival, correspondent Julie McCarthy referred to the Jenin refugee camp as “largely destroyed in Israel’s incursion into the West Bank in 2002.”

A number of listeners wrote to object to that description, including Nigel Paneth:

In fact, as has been repeatedly demonstrated, the area of destruction in the camp during the March [2002] incursion constituted considerably less than 10 percent of the camp’s houses. Moreover, much of the destruction of buildings in the Jenin camp was a consequence of the booby trapping of houses by Palestinian terrorists, who bragged about their clever placement of bombs (24 Israeli soldiers were killed in that incursion) in interviews published later in the Egyptian press.

The listeners are correct and Morning Edition will air this correction later this week:

A correction: In a story about a Palestinian film festival last week, Julie McCarthy said that the Jenin refugee camp had been “largely destroyed” during an Israeli military action in 2002. A United Nations report noted that while the center of the camp had been “totally destroyed,” the extent of the destruction for the camp as a whole was 10 percent.

Update: Correction Aired March 29

The correction ran on Monday’s “Morning Edition.” It can be heard on NPR’s Web site.

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