27 October 2011
Digging into the archives
The death or injury of an innocent human being is dreadful whether caused by accident, carelessness or malevolence – whether by friend or foe. That still doesn’t justify taking archival images and presenting them as evidence of a crime.
Asil Arara, four years old, of Anata, was shot yesterday. She may die. That much we assume is true. It is a fact of life that the shooting is immediately blamed as a deliberate act of depravity by Israel, before anything is really known. That is Palestine Reporting 101 and we’re used to it.
Not having a photograph to hand, archival shots have been used to illustrate many of the reports on the Internet. They are of injured children from other places and times. If you see the photographs below around, purporting to be Anata, October 26th 2011 point out they come from much older sources and cast disbelief on the story as a whole.
Intriguingly the Palestine News Network covered the story, illustrated it with a photograph of hand holding a gun and a tear gas container and the honest possibility of an accident. “Arara’s grandmother Samiha spoke to PNN on Wednesday afternoon, describing her granddaughter’s condition as “between life and death” and said she was playing near the wall when the shot was fired. Samiha speculated it was a stray bullet, not aimed at Asil.”
It probably wasn’t the MSM who added the photograph but the Ma’an News Agency that declares itself to be ‘the main source of independent news from Palestine’. To be fair (or at least fairer than this page) Ma’an also publishes the IDF denial that the injury was in any way IDF related.
Just for the record. On Tuesday, 18 October 2011, 20 Palestinians, including 6 children and 3 women, were injured due to shooting in celebration of the release of Palestinian prisoners. Hat tip to Elder of Ziyon.
Action items: If these photographs are displayed as those of the shooting at Anata link to the originals and point out they are not. I use the word FAKE! in caps.