Photo Credit: HonestReporting screenshot
Gaza-based 'photojournalists' embedded with the Hamas death squads documented the abduction of an elderly Israeli woman, October 7, 2023.

Like the Nazis before them, Hamas is enamored with documenting its atrocities, most profoundly the murders of Jewish civilians in the Gaza envelope settlements on October 7, 2023. Now it appears from a shocking report of HonestReporting, an NGO that “monitors the media for bias against Israel,” that major media outlets collaborated with the photojournalists the Hamas death squads brought with them to cover those murders.

In its November 8 report, “Photographers Without Borders: AP & Reuters Pictures of Hamas Atrocities Raise Ethical Questions,” HonestReporting claims: “On October 7, Hamas terrorists were not the only ones who documented the war crimes they had committed during their deadly rampage across southern Israel. Some of their atrocities were captured by Gaza-based photojournalists working for the Associated Press and Reuters news agencies whose early morning presence at the breached border area raises serious ethical questions.


“What were they doing there so early on what would ordinarily have been a quiet Saturday morning? Was it coordinated with Hamas? Did the respectable wire services, which published their photos, approve of their presence inside enemy territory, together with the terrorist infiltrators? Did the photojournalists who freelance for other media, like CNN and The New York Times, notify these outlets? Judging from the pictures of lynching, kidnapping, and storming of an Israeli kibbutz, it seems like the border has been breached not only physically, but also journalistically.”

The images from the massacre that were disseminated by AP and CNN were credited to Hassan Eslaiah, Yousef Masoud, Ali Mahmud, and Hatem Ali, all of them freelancers living in Gaza.

HonestReporting provided screenshots of Eslaiah’s deleted tweets in which he documented himself standing in front of a burning Israeli tank. The Arabic caption reads: “Live from inside the Gaza Strip settlements.”

Hassan Eslaiah’s deleted Tweet / HonestReporting screenshot

And this is an image of the same Hassan Eslaiah getting a kiss on the cheek from the mastermind of the murders, Yahya Sinwar, followed by his excited video selfie of the burning tank:

Yousef Masoud, who works for The New York Times, among other outlets, crossed into Israeli territory with the murderers. Ali Mahmud and Hatem Ali took pictures of the abductions of helpless Israelis, many of them elderly and babies, into Gaza. Mahmud shot the image of a pickup truck carrying the body of German-Israeli Shani Louk.

Hatem Ali image / HonestReporting screenshot

According to HonestReporting, and based on my research this morning, those names have been removed from the databases of AP, and CNN removed the images from the atrocities that had been filed by Hassan Eslaiah. I saw a report that CNN has severed all ties with him.

Reuters published pictures filed by Mohammed Fayq Abu Mostafa and Yasser Qudih who breached the Israeli border with the murder squads on October 7, 2023. Abu took photos of a lynch mob brutalizing the body of an Israeli soldier who was dragged out of a burning tank.
Reuters’ editors labeled that one its “Image of the Day.”

Fayq Abu Mostafa’s work on Reuters / HonestReporting screenshot

These revolting images mean that Hamas had been in contact with those Gaza-based photojournalists before the massacre. They had to know about it, they didn’t just happen to be at the Israeli border on Saturday morning.

What must be discovered next is the extent to which their employers at the AP, Reuters, CNN, the NY Times, etc. were aware of the coming day’s events. But even if those news outlets did not know in advance about the attack, once their freelancers started submitting those images, why didn’t the editors in the US and Europe alert law enforcement agencies, the State Dept., Israeli embassies. It was clear from the images that the terrorists were operating in a security vacuum – why didn’t a single news editor see fit to pick up the phone and send a warning? It may not have stopped the attack, but it could have saved lives.

And then, HonestReporting questions, what must be the degree of moral decrepitude of those news outlets when they transfer the payments into those photojournalists’ bank accounts?

In the opening scene of the 1969 film “Medium Cool,” a small TV crew stops at the scene of a car accident on the highway. They record the wreckage and the soundman tapes the moaning of the victim who is dying halfway outside her car. They make no effort to help her, and only after they’re done getting their shots and return to their own car, one of them calls for an ambulance.

Back then, we believed this movie depicted the most brazen detachment of news people from the suffering of their subject. Boy, were we naïve.


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