On June 19th, the Guardian published three separate pieces on an IDF military operation earlier in the day in the West Bank town of Jenin, where PA security forces have effectively lost control, to arrest terror suspects. (One was an article by Ben Lynfield, and two were video reports.)
During the operation in the city, which included hours of heavy gunfire between soldiers and Palestinian fighters, eight Israeli soldiers were injured when their military vehicle was targeted by a bomb.
The article by Lynfield was oddly titled “Israeli forces launch helicopter raid on Jenin in occupied West Bank“, despite the text making clear that the IDF attack helicopter was narrowly used in a rescue operation during the raid to evacuate the injured Israelis soldiers.
Regarding the casualties, Lynfield writes:
The dead Palestinians were identified as Ahmed Saqr, 15, Qassam Abu Saraya, 29 who was claimed as a fighter by Islamic Jihad, Khaled Asasa, 21 and Qais Jabareen, 21.
Seven Israeli soldiers and militarised border police sustained light to moderate injuries, according to an army spokesperson.
However, at least three of the Palestinians killed during the fighting (including the 15 year old) were claimed by Palestinian Islamic Jihad – not one, as Lynfield maintains.
Later in the piece, Lynfield writes that “one hundred and twenty-three Palestinians and at least 21 Israelis have died, according to the Associated Press”, ignoring research showing that the overwhelming majority of slain Palestinians were terrorists or males involved in violent clashes when they were killed. Further, the Guardian omits the fact that all but one of the twenty-one Israelis killed were civilians.
The second piece published yesterday (“Palestinian journalists under fire in Jenin while covering Israeli raid”) was an embedded Guardian YouTube video. The video wasn’t narrated, but did show text, including the following:
Describing Palestinians fighting Israeli soldiers as the “resistance” parrots the terminology used by terrorist groups themselves, and contrasts with the Guardian’s common use of the term “militants” in such situations. In fact, the same term is used in the strap line for the video piece appearing on the Guardian’s Israel page:
Finally, as we suspected, none of the three pieces devoted to the violence in Jenin noted that, during the fighting, Palestinian gunmen fired from inside a mosque.
We’ve complained to Guardian editors about the misleading headline, their use of the term Palestinian “resistance” and their failure to note all fatalities claimed by Palestinian Islamic Jihad.