Woman journalist murdered? FPMag editorial thoughts.
by editor, Micheal John for the entire staff.
I never officially met Shireen Abu Aqleh, but I was with her twice in the occupied territories, and said hello while we were both working. I observed her a few times later but never close. I thought to myself, if she is here, I am in the right place to cover this story.
We print-journos actually live in a somewhat different world than our TV confreres. But what I remember most is that she was being harassed by Israeli soldiers. I also saw her being assaulted.
Israeli soldiers hate al Jazeera and Associated Press but they picked on women journos mostly is what embedded in my mind. A bigger man than most of them, I didn’t catch much flak, so being a somewhat large male might have been what was up, but it seemed to me that Shireen and other women journalists were targeted while I and other males were ignored apart from endless production of credentials. In this film segment below, Shireen is under attack first from an Israeli activist woman and then by IDF. That’s my point. It’s a repeated event—mindless unwarranted harassment. Shireen professionally—which includes ‘fairly’—covered the occupation of the Palestinian lands maybe better than us all, whereas I was just an enthusiastic journalistic tourist by comparison.
It makes me choke up as I write that a reliable witness, himself shot, says today the Israeli occupiers killed Shireen with a bullet to her head, and they deny this heinous crime.
This appears to be a targeted kill. Israelis blame Palestinians but why would the Palestinians who loved Shireen, kill her?
I have asked a few IDF friends and they agree. They also say that the hatred levels in this terrible apartheid situation (yes Israelis admit that) are creating horrible events done by both sides.
I have had the experience of firing most if not all of the weapons used by the IDF in these circumstances and I assure readers that the Israeli weapons are excellent. There is no way that a soldier sighting this women did not know who they were targeting. Think about it. It was a shot to the head because this day, today, Shireen was wearing body armour clearly marked as “Press” so they chose a head shot.
I covered the Ahed Tamimi story, the other girl besides Shireen who did kick the hornet’s nest. Watching this young woman being grossly mistreated and bullied by Israeli occupying forces was stomach turning.
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett claimed in a released statement that it “appears likely” armed Palestinians were responsible for Shireen Abu Akleh’s death. This is a typical statement by the Israeli government which has denied every foul act in the Occupied Territories—almost every single one that Shireen reported.
A witness named Ali Al-Samudi, says he saw that Shireen was shot by Israeli soldiers. He himself was shot first.
“According to the information we’ve gathered, it appears likely that armed Palestinians, who were indiscriminately firing at the time, were responsible for the unfortunate death of the journalist,” says the apparently disingenuous Naftali Bennett by all witness accounts. Motive, opportunity and witnesses say Ali Al-Samudi and Shireen Abu Aqleh were shot by the occupying forces in the West Bank.
None of this brings back Shireen Abu Aqleh
For her family, friends, colleagues at al Jazeera, a bastion of true journalism, I say my prayers today and promise this tragedy and this day will not be forgotten. To the phantom lady Shireen who always made me feel I was in the right place at the right time, thank you, God bless, and you will not leave our hearts.
Some background reading:
- Gaza is under massive attack reports Arab woman doctor
- Netanyahu ousted. Time to mourn dead kids of Gaza
- US Sec. Blinkin fakes USA relevance to Gaza Crisis
- Israel kills 263 Gaza civilians incl. 58 Kids, 38 moms to protect itself? Blinkin? Biden?
- Aljazeera and Associated Press bombed out by IDF in Gaza. A line too far.
- Slowly NGOs are slipping workers into Gaza, Bethlehem and West Bank
- World view on Gaza massacre, ethnic cleansing, in Jerusalem
- Did Biden make a Major Misstep on Gaza crisis?
- Gaza deaths now include 15 kids and 5 women civilians in their homes.
- Women rights group says 9 Child Gaza Deaths is ICC matter. Charge Netanyahu
- A plan for Gaza: First, stand down.
- May 2018 Gaza Massacre: Israel / USA Should Go Silent