Monday, January 22, 2007

It's Your Fault For Quoting Me

In a previous post we saw how broadcasting facts made the broadcaster guilty of what the subjects of the broadcast themselves did. Now we have the exact same situation, this time courtesy of the intellectual powerhouse Hamas.
The Arabic satellite network Al Arabiya ordered its reporters to stop working in the Gaza Strip yesterday after the governing Palestinian Islamist party Hamas attacked the network for blasphemy.

Al Arabiya drew the wrath of Hamas after airing a recording that quoted Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh saying that Hamas "will not accept conditional aid, even if it came from God."
Haniyeh was recorded blaspheming, but the station Al-Arabiya is guilty of blasphemy for making it known. Got that?
Hamas officials told Al Arabiya not to air the quote, which reportedly came from a Palestinian Cabinet meeting. The Dubai-based network instead aired the quote along with a denial by a Hamas spokesman.
He was recorded saying the blasphemy, but a Hamas spokesman was there to deny what everyone just heard. Got that?
In response, the Palestinian government threatened to sue Arabiya. "It is a clear and deliberate defamation," government spokesman Ghazi Hamad said.
Hamas agreed to the interview (and they do love to be interviewed) but now threaten to sue because the interview was broadcast. Seems these people can't be pleased.
Al Arabiya's director of operations in Israel and the Palestinian territories, Nidal Hasan, said he had ordered the 42 employees in the station's Gaza bureau to stay home after receiving death threats from anonymous gunmen. "There are some people who might wrongly attack us," Hasan said.
The usual Middle Eastern response to a dispute - murder.
Hasan has refused to apologize for airing the statement.

"We did nothing wrong," he said. "We did our jobs as we should, getting comments on the tape from both sides."
It seems that thuggish mind control is more important than the notion of a free press.

You can't make this stuff up. Unfortunately.

(via Jihad Watch)

UPDATE - Sure enough, a "huge blast" occurred at the offices of Al-Arabiya in Gaza this evening. Although there was "considerable damage" to the office, thankfully no one was there when it exploded. One can be sure that this is a warning message sent to all journalists to think twice before attempting to report the facts that are not congruent with the Hamas worldview.

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