|PMW is being accused of incitement against the editor of the official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Hafez Barghouti. The editor recently chose to praise a Palestinian terrorist, Thaer Hammad, who killed seven Israeli soldiers and three civilians in a 2002 ambush. He wrote: "Thaer Hammad deserves freedom because he is the hero of the Intifada... He is made of the same stuff as those who carried out the capture of [Israeli soldier and hostage Gilad] Shalit, a military action that was successful by any military yardstick, and now he should be freed."
PMW reported last week on this official Palestinian glorification of a terrorist, and included excerpts from Barghouti's article. In response, the PA daily has run a full article condemning the fact that PMW had described the killing of 10 Israelis in an unprovoked attack as "murder:"
"The Israeli organization 'Palestinian Media Watch' has incited against journalist Hafez Barghouti... The Israeli press gave extensive coverage to the report by this organization [PMW], which monitors the Palestinian media, which accused Barghouti of praising the 'murderer' Thaer Hammad, as they describe him..."
It should be noted that the current article criticizing PMW repeated the editor's praise that the murder of ten was considered "the most famous and most important operation in the Al-Aqsa Intifada."
The following is a translation of more of the article accusing PMW of incitement:
"The Israeli organization 'Palestinian Media Watch' has incited against journalist Hafez Barghouti, editor-in-chief of [PA daily] Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, for his editorial about the prisoner Thaer Hammad, related to the talks about a possible prisoner exchange between Hamas and the occupation government. The Israeli press gave extensive coverage to the report by this organization [PMW] which monitors the Palestinian media, which accused Barghouti of praising the 'murderer' Thaer Hammad, as they describe him, executor of what is considered the most famous and most important operation in the Al-Aqsa Intifada... The organization [PMW] noted that Hamed is responsible for killing seven Israeli soldiers and a paramedic, and the injury of two people they describe as civilians.
"The report cites that Barghouti expressed sorrow over the absence of Hamed's name from the list of prisoners whose release is being sought by Hamas. The organization [PMW] quoted excerpts from Barghouti's editorial... in which he emphasized that Hamed and those like him should be included in the anticipated exchange."
[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 21, 2009]
To view the original PMW bulletin on PA editor Hafez Barghouti's praise of the terrorist killer, click here.