In my last blog post I criticized the White House for jumping to conclusions about Israel’s actions in Gaza, specifically for a press statement the White House released saying it was “appalled” by Israel's “disgraceful” shelling of a UN school this week.
As it turns out, a new video has emerged that indicates that the Gaza school attack, for which the White House was quick to condemn Israel, was likely staged by Hamas. In the video, you can clearly see the body of a bloodied Palestinian girl (in a pink shirt and white pants) being carried into the UN school courtyard, and staged carefully to be photographed.
This tactic clearly worked, since the New York Times published a slideshow with pictures from the shelled UN school, including a photograph (Slide 5/9) with the staged girl (in pink shirt and white pants).
Either the New York Times photographer saw the girl being placed in the UN school courtyard after the shelling and still published the photo, or they did not bother to find out the true facts on the ground.
The photos of the injured in Gaza are tragic, and it is heart-wrenching to see innocent children hurt. But that is exactly Hamas' goal -- to take what really happened out of context (in this case by staging the child's body) and play on the viewer's emotions to make Israel look bad.
In any event such ignorant or biased reporting, where photos are published without checking their validity, is “indefensible.”