The Guardian and a tale of two hooded ‘Palestinian prisoners’

A CiF Watch post on June 7 focused on a report by the Guardian about questions raised by some board members at the annual meeting of G4S – a British multinational security services company – regarding their business operations in Israel.

The Guardian story by Jennifer Rankin featured the following photo from an anti-G4S protest, organized by Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC), outside the meeting.


The hooded prisoner represented in this display of political street theater was meant to draw attention to what anti-Zionist groups allege is the mistreatment of Palestinian prisoners inside Israeli jails. Indeed, PSC, parroting the narrative of the Palestinian Authority, characterizes the prisoners in question as “political prisoners”, a term, as CAMERA has demonstrated, which is a euphemism for all Palestinians in Israeli custody, even those convicted of lethal terror attacks against Israeli civilians.

Moreover, the sincerity of the “pro-Palestinian” sentiment of activist groups, and the Guardian editors who continually grant their cause a forum, seems quite questionable given their silence thus far in response to the disturbing sight of the following real hooded Palestinian – one of several photos released by the Hamas-run Interior Ministry in Gaza recently.


The imagery above does not represent leftist theatrical agitprop, but a genuine photo of one of two Palestinians just before they were hanged to death on Saturday on charges of ‘collaborating’ with Israel – two of at least 16 Palestinians who have been executed in Gaza for spying since Hamas seized the territory in 2007.

There is no mention of the execution on the site of PSC.  Additionally, the Guardian’s correspondent in the region, Harriet Sherwood, though finding time recently to publish 3 stories about a Palestinian from Gaza who was a contestant on an Arab reality show, has thus far not covered the story.  Moreover, this lapse in journalistic scrutiny of an extremely pressing issue relating to the human rights of Palestinians in Palestinian custody is not a one-off for Sherwood.  She has also failed to cover the death of a Palestinian named Ayman Samara while in a Jericho jail, as well the broader disturbing story, reported elsewhere, involving the abuse and torture of Palestinian prisoners in PA run prisons.

In reading the Guardian’s coverage of the region, it’s impossible not to conclude that their reporters’ activist journalism on behalf of the human rights of Palestinians is necessarily subservient to the broader ideological aim of vilifying Israelis. 

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