Monday, October 1, 2007

Fatah uses “Jerusalem Post” as mouthpiece to smear Hamas

From Khalid Amayreh in the West Bank

"A right-wing Israeli newspaper and the Fatah organization have been cooperating to smear Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic resistance movement.

On Sunday, the Jerusalem Post, a clearly Islamophobic English newspaper which is also a mouthpiece for Jewish settlers, published an article claiming that Hamas’ men were recently involved in lynching and stoning to death a 16-year-old Gaza girl in connection with what is generally known as honor killing. The story has turned out to be a hoax based on disinformation provided to the paper by Fatah’s intelligence officers.

The article gave graphic details of the incident, quoting fictitious eyewitnesses as well as Fatah activists who claimed to have seen the incident.

However, the video image which the Jerusalem Post claimed belonged to the lynched Gaza girl turned out to be that of a young Yazidi Iraqi girl brutally killed by her un-Islamic sect in April for having planned to convert to Islam and marry a Sunni Muslim man.

The paper published a follow-up report on Monday, 1 October, admitting that Fatah intelligence men had given its Palestinian affair correspondent Khalid Abu Toameh false information for the purpose of smearing Hamas and presenting them as barbarian. Abu Toameh’s reports from the occupied Palestinian territories rely mostly on information from Fatah people which nearly always portrays Hamas in bad light.

According to the report, Fatah “General Intelligence” had contacted the Jerusalem Post, offering the “exclusive” video and story for publication. The Palestinian officials reportedly gave the paper the phone numbers of two men in the Gaza Strip who claimed that they had witnessed the “honor killing” of a 16-year-old girl. The two confirmed by phone that they had witnessed the lynching of the girl in the Gaza Strip......

The Jerusalem Post routinely publishes tendentious and even concocted stories about Hamas and Islamic movements in general for the purpose of besmirching their image.

In mid June, for example, the paper published a piece of disinformation by Fatah alleging that a Hamas militiaman brutally killed a Fatah activist by pushing him off a multistory building in downtown Gaza. However, upon further investigation, the story turned out to be inaccurate as the victim’s father asserted that his son was actually killed by Fatah militiamen who mistook his son for a Hamas activist.

The Jerusalem Post routinely hosts anti-Islamic columnists such as Daniel Pipes and Alan Dershowitz who employ openly racist phraseology such as “Islamofascists” in reference to Islamic resistance organizations such as Hamas and Hizbullah.

The paper refuses to publish opinion articles critical of Israel’s crimes against the Palestinian people."

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