- Monday, June 17, 2024

It was no surprise that when Israeli forces raided a Gaza residential complex to free three hostages, the holding cell turned out to be the home of a journalist-Hamas hybrid.

Such commingling of the two professions, killer of innocents and journalist propagandists, seems an everyday affair in the Hamas-ridden Gaza Strip.

Abdallah Aljamal wrote a 2019 column for Al Jazeera and is featured on its webpages. He also sent stories to the Palestine Chronicle, a U.S.-based anti-Israel site with such articles as “Debunking Israeli Propaganda.”

Israeli military hostage rescuers on June 8 killed Aljamal, a former Hamas spokesman, and family members along with other Hamas operatives.

The next day, the Israeli military said on X: “‘Journalist’ Abdallah Aljamal was a Hamas terrorist holding [three hostages] in his family’s home in Nuseirat. No press vest can make him innocent of the crimes he has committed. @AlJazeera what’s this terrorist doing on your website?”

Al Jazeera promoted Aljamal with a permanent web profile and photograph: “Abdallah Aljamal is a Gaza-based reporter and photojournalist. He often reports from the ongoing ‘March of Return protests.’”

Al Jazeera and its owner, the al-Thani family-run state of Qatar, have played footsie with Islamic terrorists for years.

Qatar, which is a major Middle East host to U.S. military forces, is also an accommodating host to Hamas’ principal and wealthy leaders, who live immune (probably) from Israeli assassinations. From Doha, they comfortably direct Jew-killing in and outside Gaza.

The pro-Israel Middle East Media Research Institute described the symbiosis in a June 10 post:

“Since the October 7 attack, Hamas’s leaders have been managing the war from Doha, Qatar, and conveying their messages mostly via the Qatar-owned Al-Jazeera TV channel. The network has been operating as a propaganda outlet in the service of Hamas 24/7, with hardly any coverage of other topics. It expresses unreserved support for Hamas, justifying the deadly attack, showing footage it obtained from the terrorists’ bodycams, and celebrating it as a victory that has brought pride and honor to the Islamic nation.”

The Saudis and Qatar, after an intense breakup, made an uneasy peace in 2021, renewing diplomatic ties. Their split was defined in 2018 when Adel al-Jubeir, Saudi Arabia’s top diplomat, appeared at a Council on Foreign Relations function and unleashed on Qatar and the ruling al-Thanis.

“The Qataris, since the mid-’90s, have been sponsoring radicals,” he said. “They have been inciting people. They have become a base for the leadership for the Muslim Brotherhood. … The Qataris harbor and shelter terrorists.”

He said text messages between the Qatari ambassador to Iraq and Iraq’s foreign minister showed Qatar paid $50 million to Iran’s late terror master Qasem Soleimani. Then-President Donald Trump ordered the killing of Soleimani in 2020 when he was in Iraq planning more deaths for American troops.

According to the American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise, Qatar has poured over $4 billion into American universities over the past 20 years. And by golly, look at what happened to them. In the U.S., they have become the heart of anti-Jewish thought and harassment.

The Middle East Media Research Institute posted a video on X on June 11 of Muslim students at the University of Illinois at April and May Friday sermons.

“America is a cancer,” one student said. He listed democracy, secularism and capitalism and said, “These are cancers.”

With its huge sovereign wealth fund, Qatar dances with American billionaires and high-end professional sports. It hosted the 2022 FIFA soccer championships. Its name is attached as a sponsor to major thoroughbred events such as the fall showcase Breeders’ Cup. Ted Leonsis brought in Qatar as a 5% minority stake in his Monumental Sports at $200 million. This means Qatar is a minority owner of the Washington Wizards and Capitals.

Hamas’ Oct. 7 atrocities (these terrorists baked babies alive; killed over 1,200; took 250 hostages) immediately brought Israeli allegations that mainstream media worked with Gaza-based freelance journalists who accompanied Hamas henchmen.

The following month, Honest Reporting, a pro-Israel media monitor, came out with a report naming names of media that use Gaza stringers: The Associated Press, CNN, The New York Times and Reuters.

The Jerusalem Post wrote a scathing editorial. “Journalists embedded with Hamas on Oct. 7 violated all media redlines,” the headline said.

The Post quoted Honest Reporting.

“What were they [the photojournalists] doing there so early on what would ordinarily have been a quiet Saturday morning? Was it coordinated with Hamas? Did the respectable wire services, which published their photos, approve of their presence inside enemy territory, together with the terrorist infiltrators?”

The mainstream media recoiled and then fought back. They said they had no advance invasion warnings.

The New York Times said its team simply rushed to where the story was happening.

“This is the essential role of a free press in wartime,” the AP quoted the Times as saying. “We are gravely concerned that unsupported accusations and threats to freelancers endangers them and undermines work that serves the public interest.”

Yet CNN and the AP ended their ties to Palestinian freelancer Hassan Eslaiah, who Honest Reporting said deployed from the Gaza border as Hamas henchmen entered Israeli communities to begin their killing spree. AP credited Mr. Eslaiah for a photo of a burning kibbutz.

Honest Reporting posted an Eslaiah selfie of him being kissed on the cheek by Yahya Sinwar, the slaughter’s architect.

The Wall Street Journal reported on June 11 that Mr. Sinwar said in messages that Gaza civilian deaths were necessary to win international support. In other words, Hamas is making sure Gaza civilians die to manipulate President Biden and his hapless secretary of state, who dramatically shifted mid-war to be critics of Israel.

A year before Oct. 7. The New York Times fired a Palestinian freelancer credited in six Times stories. The split came after Honest Reporting disclosed his social media posts calling for violence against Jews.

As for the Palestine Chronicle, it covered hostage-holder Aljamal this way: “Abdallah Aljamal (1987-2024)-Well-Known Journalist Murdered in Gaza.”

“The Palestine Chronicle is saddened to learn that Abdallah Aljamal, one of its contributors in the Gaza Strip, has been killed in the latest Israeli massacre in the Nuseirat refugee camp,” the Chronicle said, copying Hamas’ talking points.

• Rowan Scarborough is a columnist with The Washington Times.

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