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June 02, 2010

Washington Times Takes a Swipe At AP

The Washington Times' Wesley Pruden takes a swipe at the Associated Press, writing:

The Associated Press, which once took pride in its reporting but is awash now only in activists and pundits, set out the story line: "Dozens of activists and six Israeli soldiers were wounded in the bloody predawn confrontation in international waters. The violent takeover dealt yet another blow to Israel's international image, already tarnished by war crimes accusations in Gaza and its three-year-old blockade of the impoverished Palestinian territory."

The account of the Israeli commandos tells a different story. The Mava Marmara, the lead ship in the armada, was told to change course and not land in Gaza. When it ignored the warning, Israeli marines and commandos boarded the ship, some by rope ladders from helicopters. A fierce fight erupted on deck, and only after taking casualties and fearing for their lives did the commandos fire back, trying to aim first at the feet of the "peace activists."

Exaggerating the flotilla's alleged humanitarian aim, AP falsely reported yesterday:

The pro-Palestinian flotilla had been headed to Gaza with tens of thousands of tons of aid that Israel bans from Gaza.

Yet, not even the Free Gaza folks claim to have brought "tens of thousands of tons of aid." Their claim, which has been widely repeated and accepted by the mainstream media, is that the ships were carrying 10,000 tons, a figure which Elder of Ziyon has pilloried. Furthermore, much of the aid brought by the Free Gaza ships is material that Israel already permits to enter the Gaza Strip -- medical equipment, imperishable foods, and toys. According to Free Gaza, they were carrying just 500 tons of cement, which the Israelis are not permitting to cross into Gaza.

No matter how you slice it, the AP claim that the activists were carrying "tens of thousands of tons of aid that Israel bans" is false.

Posted by TS at June 2, 2010 06:57 AM


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