Archive for May 23rd, 2008

French Court Backs Activist Who Called Pali Child ‘Martyrdom’ a Hoax

Friday, May 23rd, 2008

I’ve commented about this several times since it became apparent that it was made up. Here’s some background:
In the Gaza Strip in September 2000, France 2 showed edited footage of a boy, Mohammed al-Dura and his father purportedly being killed by Israeli soldiers. In the edited video, we see the child screaming in fear while his father shields him. Later, both he and his father slump down, according to the report, the father wounded and the boy dead.
This footage was used as the crux to ignite the “Al Aqsa intifada,” or uprising.
What came out years later is that when the whole footage is viewed, we see the “dead” boy raising his head and looking around before becoming “dead” again. We see fake gun battles and lots of ambulances. “Hoax” is just the tip of the iceberg.

The French Court of Appeals issued a ruling today favoring an activist who claims the purported shooting death of a 12-year-old Palestinian boy – used to spark the “Al Aqsa intifada,” or uprising – was a hoax.

The court overturned a lower court decision against Jewish activist Philippe Karsenty, who had been convicted of libeling a French state-owned television channel and its Jerusalem correspondent, Charles Enderlin, the Jerusalem Post reported. Karsenty contended France 2 knowingly misled the world about the event in the Gaza Strip in September 2000.

Karsenty told the Jerusalem paper today’s verdict “means we have the right to say France 2 broadcast a fake news report, that [al-Dura’s shooting] was a staged hoax and that they duped everybody – without being sued.”

Enderlin insisted, however, the appeals court ruled Karsenty failed to prove the news report was staged.

The lower court decision was overturned, Enderlin said in a statement to the Post, because “the court believed Karsenty had the right to stridently criticize the [France 2] report, since it dealt with an emotional topic, and that Karsenty’s investigation into the matter convinced the court he was being sincere.”

A source close to Enderlin’s side told the Post he and France 2 would appeal the verdict. Karsenty replied, however, the only appeal left would be to France’s Supreme Court.

“If they continue to insist they are correct, we will have victims of terror attacks that directly resulted from the [al-Dura] footage sue France 2,” he said.

Karsenty called on French President Nicolas Sarkozy “to take responsibility for the French state’s defense of the worst anti-Semitic lie around. It’s time to apologize to the world for broadcasting a fake news report that has inflamed the Muslim world and endangered world peace.”

Middle East and media expert Tom Gross believes today’s verdict is significant, contending it “shows there are serious doubts about France 2’s version of events, and that the entire world press was irresponsible in being so quick to take at face value the claims of a local Palestinian cameraman, who has admitted his partisanship.”

Islamic icon

France 2’s report, purporting to show the young al-Dura lying dead after cowering with his father behind a barrel during an Israeli-Palestinian firefight, enflamed countless Arab youth to seek “martyrdom.” The boy’s image became iconic, appearing on murals and posters in Palestinian towns. Palestinian TV used an actor to portray the boy in “Paradise,” exhorting other Muslim youth to jihad. Streets, squares and academies in the Arab world have been named after him.

Gross noted to the Jerusalem paper that Osama bin Laden referred to al-Dura in a post-9/11 video and the killers of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl placed a picture of him in their beheading video.

But controversy has raged over the veracity of the film for eight years, with WND first reporting in December 2000 that the Israeli military could not possibly have shot the boy and later documenting massive evidence the entire incident had been staged.

A French court convicted Karsenty of libel in 2006 for writing the al-Dura affair was a “masquerade that dishonors France and its public television.” Karsenty, director of the media watchdog group Media-Ratings, was ordered to pay a fine of $1,380 to France 2 and another fine, of the same amount, to the reporter Enderlin. He also was assessed $4,000 in court costs.

Karsenty appealed the decision, and last October a French judge ordered France 2 to submit to the court the original 27 minutes of footage shot by its Gaza stringer, Palestinian cameraman Talal Abu Rahma, to be shown during a public hearing Nov. 14. But the TV channel submitted only 18 minutes of footage, claiming the other parts had been disposed of because they were not related to al-Dura.

Just 55 seconds of the film, narrated by Enderlin, who was not at the scene, was originally broadcast.

After the Nov. 14 hearing, incredulous witnesses commented on the 18 minutes of video screened in court. Richard Landes, an American historian, author and associate history professor at Boston University, who had previously viewed over 20 minutes of the film in Endelin’s office, testified that two scenes, which clearly had been staged, had been cut from the “uncut” video shown in court.

One of many indications the scene was staged is evident in video footage cut from the televised France 2 report and posted on the Second Draft website, which mounted a major investigative effort on the case. In the clip, the boy, whom Enderlin has already pronounced dead, lifts up his arm and head and looks around before resuming the “dead” position.

Karsenty points to a video-taped admission by the cameraman, Abu Rahma, that there are untold secrets related to the case. The activist notes only seven bullet holes are seen behind al-Dura despite Abu Rahma’s repeated insistence the child survived 45 minutes of continuous shooting by Israeli forces directed at the boy.

But the video footage shows pretend gun battles and faked ambulance runs at the junction that day.

Israel Defense Forces soldiers stationed at the junction testified they did not participate in any firefight that day.

The IDF initially apologized for the incident but later conducted a probe in which it concluded the boy could not have been hit by Israeli bullets.

Original Link.

Muslim Convert Held After Nail Bomb Blast in U.K. Restaurant

Friday, May 23rd, 2008

The person being held in this crime is a Muslim convert, but he has a history of mental health issues, which is most likely the cause that lead him to do this.
His mental illness, coupled with some of the inflammatory rhetoric he may have heard at mosque, could have contributed to his belief that committing this crime was the correct thing to do.

A Muslim convert with a history of mental illness was being held under armed guard tonight after he apparently detonated a nail bomb in a family restaurant.

Nicky Reilly, 22, who suffered serious facial injuries in the blast, is thought to have carried out the alleged attack after being ‘preyed upon and radicalised’ by Islamic extremists.

Police and bomb disposal teams were called in after diners at the Giraffe restaurant in Exeter city centre heard three blasts go off in a toilet as they were having lunch.

Deputy chief constable Tony Melville, speaking just yards from the restaurant, said: “Witnesses described how a male entered a toilet in the restaurant shortly before an explosion was heard.”

He said police and other emergency services went to the scene and the man was arrested in connection with the explosion.

Mr Melville said: “This male, who we now know is called Nicky Reilly, suffered serious facial injuries but these are not life threatening.

“He is currently in police custody undergoing treatment at a hospital.”

Bomb disposal experts made safe two explosive devices which are now being forensically examined, said Mr Melville.

“After the arrest, police searched an address in King Street, Plymouth, linked to Reilly using armed officers from the tactical aid group.”

Mr Melville said the premises were still being searched.

He said: “Our investigations so far indicate Reilly, who has a history of mental illness, had adopted the Islamic faith.

“We believe, despite his weak and vulnerable state, he was preyed upon, radicalised and taken advantage of.”

Mr Melville said the police knew Reilly travelled between Plymouth and Exeter today using the bus service.

He said the police were releasing his photograph because they wanted anyone who saw him today, or could help the police track his movements over recent weeks, to contact them.

Earlier, witnesses said officers had to break down the cubicle door because the 22-year-old refused to come out.

When he emerged, wearing jeans and a dark t-shirt, blood was running down his face and all over his clothes.

Original Link.