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Jan. 20, 2024Dear Editor, If Israel is “the sixth worst offender in the world for detaining journalists”, how come no one is talking about the top five? I’m sure Iran is in the first five and it would be interesting to learn how Iran tortures its own journalists never mind kidnaps other country’s journalists. By comparison, detention seems pretty mild. Israel detains Palestinian journalists because all of them are working for their governments, Hamas in Gaza, and the Palestinian Authority in the Palestinian-governed territories. These people are combatants, not objective reporters. Israel is justified to be concerned that Palestinian journalists are passing on strategic information to their governments and has the responsibility to stop it, particularly during wartime. As for killing journalists. The last two killed were Islamic Jihad members posing as journalists driving in a car with a Hamas operative controlling a drone from his car. Did these so-called journalists hang their press credential banner from the car to protect the driver? Whether they did or not, they were combatants. Other journalists killed on the job were not journalists at all, but Hamas fighters posing as journalists to deter Israeli fire. The more journalists on the official Hamas body count, the more  people turn against Israel which all this foofaraw is about.  The Committee to Protect Journalists should consider the breaches of the Journalist code of conduct, (if there is such a thing) before uncritically accepting Hamas-generated propaganda as fact. Larry Shapiro

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