For those who were not convinced by Hamas's gleeful massacre of more than 1,400 Israelis on Oct. 7, further evidence emerged in recent days that the Islamist terrorist death cult is evil. The mainstream media, however, continued to voice skepticism.
It remains unclear why so many journalists give anti-Semitic baby killers equal if not better coverage than their own government and its closest ally in the Middle East.
The evidence: Israel felt compelled on Monday to screen a 43-minute video for foreign journalists documenting Hamas terrorists' bloody Oct. 7 rampage through the country. Leading news outlets have quibbled that specific acts of barbarity by the terrorists had not been conclusively documented by publicly available materials.
"Now, unfortunately, and I can't believe I'm saying this, and I can't believe that we as a country are having to do this," Israel government spokesman Eylon Levy said in announcing the screening. "As we work to defeat the terror organization that brutalized our people, we are witnessing a Holocaust-denial-like phenomenon evolving in real time as people are casting doubt on the magnitude of the atrocities that Hamas committed against our people and, in fact, recorded in order to glorify that violence."
The reaction: The some 200 journalists who attended the screening were reportedly left in tears. But, according to a Times of Israel reporter who was in attendance, the first two questions Israeli officials received afterward were about why the video did not feature rape or beheadings of babies. Instead, the video only showed a woman who had clearly been raped moments earlier, beheaded adults, and murdered babies.
The subsequent coverage of the screening had similar vibes.
CBS News, Oct. 25: "Israel Releases Graphic Video of Hamas Terror Attacks as Part of 'Narrative Battle' Over War in Gaza":
As images of the devastation in Gaza—including Palestinian women and children displaced, maimed, killed, or weeping for their loved ones—have filled the airwaves and social media, Israeli authorities have become keenly aware that the sympathy their country received after the Oct. 7 attacks has been waning as international condemnation grows—a shift that Hamas appears ready to exploit. ...
Poynter, Oct. 24: "How Media Outlets and Politicians Amplified Uncorroborated Reports of Beheaded Babies in Israel":
Footage of death and destruction in Israel and Gaza is plentiful, disturbing and all too real. At the same time, misinformation about the war has thrived. ...
The confirmed violence is horrible enough. So why did a weakly sourced claim about 40 beheaded babies travel far and wide? Experts on disinformation and the Middle East pinpointed the emotional response elicited by violence against children, along with a lack of confirmation from official sources.
New York Times, Oct. 23: "Israel Shares Raw Footage of the Oct. 7 Attacks":
The Israeli military showed the compilation to foreign reporters on a day when Israel continued to bombard Gaza with heavy airstrikes.
We Do Not Know if Israeli Babies Were Beheaded by Hamas Militants in Kfar Aza https://t.co/BMebhBvmIi
— snopes.com (@snopes) October 24, 2023
The evidence: U.S. intelligence agencies on Tuesday upgraded their confidence that Islamic Jihad, a Hamas-affiliated Palestinian terrorist group, was responsible for an Oct. 17 explosion at a Gaza hospital. News outlets published analyses that reached the same conclusion—contradicting their earlier reporting that uncritically repeated Hamas's claim that Israel bombed the hospital.
The reaction: The media struggled to embrace their own findings, stressing that ultimately the truth is elusive and anyway Israel is morally culpable.
New York Times, Oct. 24: "US Cites ‘High Confidence’ That Palestinian Rocket Caused Hospital Blast":
U.S. intelligence agencies released no new imagery or other new evidence to make their case. Instead, they said their strengthened assessment came from Israeli intercepts of Palestinian armed groups and publicly available video. ...
The U.S. intelligence analysis of the Al Jazeera video is at odds with a New York Times investigation, which found that the projectile shown in that video and others was launched from Israel and exploded well away from the hospital. A spokesman for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence said the Times and intelligence agencies had different interpretations of the video.
New York Times, Oct. 22: "Hamas Fails to Make Case That Israel Struck Hospital":
For Palestinians, the debate over who is responsible for the hospital blast obscures a broader context in which Israeli strikes have devastated whole neighborhoods, displaced hundreds of thousands of Gazans, and killed thousands of others.
CNN, Oct. 22: "CNN Investigates: Forensic Analysis of Images and Videos Suggests Rocket Caused Gaza Hospital Blast, Not Israeli Airstrike":
Israel has presented two contrasting narratives on which direction the alleged Hamas rocket flew in from. ...
Until an independent investigation is allowed on the ground and evidence collected from the site the prospect of determining who was behind the blast is remote.
Associated Press, Oct. 21: "AP Visual Analysis: Rocket From Gaza Appeared To Go Astray, Likely Caused Deadly Hospital Explosion":
Outside experts said it’s not possible to rule out with absolute certainty that the rocket launches occurring near the hospital and the timing of the explosion seconds later are just a coincidence. However, they also noted there is no evidence to support that scenario.
When the media were not applying extreme scrutiny to evidence of Hamas's savagery and duplicitousness, they were repeating the bloodthirsty savages' propaganda about releasing 4—out of more than 200—hostages.
The two American hostages have been handed over to the Red Cross and are 'on their way out" after being released on 'humanitarian grounds" because the mother is in poor health. https://t.co/g5WqGqejfH
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) October 20, 2023
CNN gushes over the conditions that Hamas had prepared for hostages:
"These tunnels have ventilation...air conditioning...there was shampoo, there was antibiotics...there were medics...that means they had TAMPONS and things!" pic.twitter.com/CrMPt56u1x
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) October 24, 2023
Lifshitz said her captors seemed prepared for hostages and had clean rooms with mattresses on the ground. They were told not to talk about politics.
The hostages were treated well, she said, and received medication and regular visits from a doctor. https://t.co/wwTh7JHTSw
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) October 24, 2023
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, Israeli special forces media described discovering the body of a 14- or 15-year-old girl who had been brutally raped in her bed by a Hamas terrorist.
Israeli special forces paramedic describes the aftermath of the brutal rape and execution of Israeli girls in Be’eri during the October 7 Massacre.
— Eylon Levy (@EylonALevy) October 25, 2023