Hamas Militant or Football Player? Offensive or Defensive?

During Chanukah and the week when the bible portion dealing with Joseph is read in synagogues around the world, Jews often make the trip to Joseph’s Tomb in Shechem / Nablus in Judea and Samaria / West Bank. Accompanied by a military escort, the cars often come under fire from local Palestinian Arabs, as was the case last week.

Ahmed Atef Daraghmeh, a 23-year old Palestinian man from a nearby city, was armed and involved in the shooting attack on the Jewish convoy, and was shot and killed by Israeli troops. The news media covered the story very differently.

  • The Jordan Times headline was “Israeli forces kill Palestinian militant in West Bank clashes,” making it clear that the Palestinian was an armed militant. The article added “Islamist group Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip, said Daraghmeh was a member of its military wing who “was killed by occupation bullets during clashes at dawn on Thursday”.
  • Al Monitor picked up the exact same headline and story as above, as produced by Agence France-Presse (AFP).
  • The Times of Israel similarly led with “Hamas ‘fighter’ killed during armed clash with IDF in Nablus.” The Israeli site was more clear labeling the Palestinian a terrorist in the article.

Other Arab and Muslim sites reoriented the story.

  • Turkish site TRT World‘s headline was “Palestinian football player killed by Israeli army in West Bank,” made it sound like Israeli forces went into a soccer stadium and wantonly attacked someone kicking a ball. The sub-header “23-year-old Ahmad Atef Daraghmeh was killed, and five other Palestinians injured during an Israeli army raid in Nablus,” made the Israeli visit an incursion rather than a visit to a Jewish holy site.
  • Free Press Kashmir picked up the footballer focus with “Palestinian footballer shot dead by Israeli forces in West Bank”
  • Daily Sabah wrote “Israeli army kills another Palestinian man in occupied West Bank,” skipping the militant’s profession and making it sound like Israelis were on a daily warpath.
  • Arab News extended the story with “Palestine’s FA asks FIFA to probe reported Israeli killing of footballer,” connecting the story to the just concluded World Cup.
  • Al Jazeera headline was “Palestinian footballer killed by Israel in West Bank: Medics”
  • Middle East Eye: “West Bank: Palestinian footballer killed by Israeli forces in overnight raid”
  • Middle East Monitor: “Israel kills Palestinian footballer in Nablus” and led with “Just days after the FIFA World Cup during which the issue of Palestine featured prominently, Israeli occupation forces have today shot dead a Palestinian footballer.”
  • Tasnim News headline was “Young Palestinian Soccer Player Killed by Israeli Forces during West Bank Raid”
  • The anti-Zionist blog Mondoweiss wrote “Soccer player and resistance fighter Ahmad Daraghmeh killed in Nablus,” covering his profession and alluding to his military activities.
PALESTINIAN MOURNERS AT THE FUNERAL PROCESSION FOR AHMED ATEF DARAGHMEH, 23, KILLED DURING CLASHES WITH ISRAELI FORCES ON DECEMBER 22, 2022, IN THE TOWN OF TUBAS IN THE WEST BANK. (PHOTO: WAJED NOBANI/APA IMAGES)

Most of the Muslim and Arab world led with Daraghmeh’s profession which had nothing to do with the incident, as did a commentator from BBC, as reported by the Jewish Chronicle:

“The dead Palestinian footballer lamented by soccer pundit Gary Lineker was actually a Hamas terrorist killed after firing on Israeli soldiers. The former England striker and BBC presenter sparked fury after he described the death as “awful” without giving the context…. Mr Lineker had voiced his outrage over the shooting in response to a tweet that read: “This #Palestinian soccer player Ahmed Daraghmeh was waiting for a great future in representing his country’s team, #Palestine. The bullets of the occupation stopped his football dream & took his life treacherously. A little while ago in #Nablus. #FreePalestine #Ukraine #sportgala”.”

Lineker has a history of retweeting Palestinian propaganda and anti-Semitic vitriol. He has 1.1 million followers who read such posts. Add that total to the readership of the Arab sites, and millions of people were fed false news that Israel was targeting Palestinian athletes for assassination.

Hamas militants are also doctors, merchants, teachers and athletes. It doesn’t absolve them of their heinous terrorism – let alone make Israel the aggressor – but highlights how mainstream the political-terrorist group is in Palestinian society.

Related articles:

Review of Media Headlines on Palestinian Arab Terror Spree

Why the Media Ignores Jihadists in Israel

The New Salman Abedi High School for Boys in England and the Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel Soccer Tournament in France

The Media Splits on Showing “Islamic Terrorism” and its Presence in Israel

The Media’s Divergent Coverage of Abbas’ “50 Holocausts”

Radical Muslim Groups Celebrate Bombings And Murder of Jewish Teenager In Jerusalem

NY Times Repeatedly Tells Its Readers That An Israeli Supported A Mass Murderer, But Never That Many Palestinians Embrace Many Terrorists

The Media Cares Much More About Journalists Than Children

Is The Beheading Of A Gay Palestinian Man News Or Opinion?

Pros And Cons Of Muslims Considering Jewish Holy Sites As Sacred Also

The Old City of Jerusalem’s “Settlers’ Quarter”

Anti-Semitism wears many masks, the most prominent these days is anti-Zionism. The malicious malady has related hats, including denying Jewish history, distorting Judaism and opposing the rights of Jews to live in certain places.

The British Broadcasting Corporation, the BBC, has locked arms with alt-left Jews in some of these sinister proclamations, especially concerning Jews living over the 1949 Armistice Lines struck between Jordan and Israel. That “Green Line” was specifically defined as never to be regarded as a border, and the 1950 Jordanian annexation of the “West Bank” was deemed illegal by the international community, marking that invisible line as a footnote in history penned in disappearing ink. No matter, anti-Semites have a long history of dictating where Jews can and cannot live, whether the Pale of Settlement in Russia or ghettoes throughout Europe.

Consider the recent BBC coverage of the neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah in Jerusalem.

The BBC using a map produced by B’Tselem, a group which markets itself as an “information center for human rights in the occupied territories.”

The dotted lines (at least they are dotted!) represent the 1949 Armistice Lines between Israel and Jordan, which disappeared in 1967 when Jordan attacked Israel again and lost the entirety of eastern Jerusalem and the “West Bank.” Note that the map’s legend refers to the dotted line as “pre-1967 ceasefire line,” which implies that there was a ceasefire between Israel and Palestine, as Jordan is not mentioned (this is deliberately misleading). The map’s purple areas are marked as “Israeli settlements.” Are they?

In the lower portion of the map is the Old City of Jerusalem. Marked in purple is the Jewish Quarter, a place with over 750 years of continuous Jewish presence except for the window of Arab rule when the Jordanians ethnically-cleansed all of the Jews from 1949 to 1967. According to this map, any JEW – not Israeli – living east of the Green Line (EGL) is a “settler.”

There are thousands of Israeli Arabs living in EGL including the eastern part of Jerusalem. Israel gave all the Arabs in the city permanent resident status in 1967 and has afforded them the right to apply for Israeli citizenship. Thousands have already taken such citizenship and thousands more have applied. Yet the B’Tselem/ BBC map doesn’t mark the homes of Israeli Arabs in purple but only the locations where Israeli Jews live.

Jewish men, women and children living in the Jewish Quarter of their holiest city
are marked with the term “settler”

Adolf Hitler accused the Jews of being sly manipulators who steal, as he roused Germany to rout the Jews. He painted their stores with the word “Jude” and made them wear yellow Jewish stars with the word in the center, so they could be easily identifiable for insult and attack by passers-by, and interrogated and ultimately expelled for annihilation by government officials.

So it is today with the term “settler,” even in the Jewish people’s holiest city.


Related First One Through articles:

Time to Define Banning Jews From Living Somewhere as Antisemitic

Antisemitism Includes the Denial of Jewish History

Rashida Tlaib’s Modern ‘Mein Kampf’

The United Nations and Holy Sites in the Holy Land

The Green Line Through Jerusalem

The Long History of Dictating Where Jews Can Live Continues

Linda Sarsour as Pontius Pilate

“Settlers” Now Means Jews Stepping Over The Green Line

To Serve Jews, United Nations Style

First One Through music video:

The Green Line (music by The Kinks)

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

BBC’s Industrial Grade Blood Libel

A young Jewish yeshiva student was shot and killed while waiting at a bus stop in the Israeli territory of Area C, along with several friends who were shot and wounded. BBC News wouldn’t mention his name until a Palestinian Arab teenager was killed in the vicinity weeks later, amid a confrontation with Israeli police.

On June 11, 2021, BBC News published an article called “Palestinian teenager shot dead in clash at protest.” The name of the teenager was featured – three times – as were pictures of a Palestinian ambulance and mourning women. There were no pictures of the Jewish student, Yehuda Geutta, whose name was mentioned only once in the article.

The BBC storyline was that the Palestinian teenager was protesting “against the building of an illegal Jewish settlement near the city of Nablus.” The article would repeat several times that the settlement is “illegal” and is “occupied” by “settlers.” It would never mention that the land is in Area C, Israeli administered land as agreed to by the Palestinian Authority in the Oslo Accords.

So a more complete picture of the story is warranted for people who want an accurate picture and not one told by jaundiced mainstream media.


In early May 2021, several students from a yeshiva in Itamar in Area C were shot at while waiting at an established hitchhiking post at the nearby Tapauch Junction. Yehuda Guetta, 19, was hit in the head and died from his injuries on May 5. A Palestinian man, Muntasser Shalaby, 44, was arrested and charged with the shootings and murder.

Israeli medics and police inspect the scene of shooting attack in Tapuah Junction,
near the city of Ariel in Area C, on May 2, 2021. (Photo by Sraya Diamant/Flash90)

In response to the terrorist attack, several Jews moved to reestablish the outpost of Evyatar not far away. The outpost had been established in 2013 after a similar incident when a Palestinian Arab terrorist stabbed Evyatar Borovsky to death at the same intersection. The outpost was dismantled by Israel as it was built without approvals and permits.

The reestablished outpost quickly grew to around 50 people and Palestinian Arabs came frequently to protest their presence, often setting hundreds of tires on fire as a form of chemical arson to poison the new Jewish residents. One of the Palestinian Arabs participating in the assault saidwe come at night, we light up the mountain, to send them a message that they can’t have even an inch of this land.” During one such protest which included pelting soldiers with stones, a 15 year old Palestinian Arab named Mohammed Hamayel, was killed.

Palestinian Arabs brandishing torches protesting against Israeli Jews moving to Evyatar in Area C,
June 22, 2021 (photo credit: Mohamad Torokman/ Reuters)

The new Israeli government headed by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett just reached an agreement with the Nahala movement and the Samaria Regional Council that Evyatar would not be razed again, after it concluded that the land was not owned by anyone privately. The agreement stated that the civilians would evacuate the outpost which would be turned into an army post and yeshiva seminary.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian terrorist who killed Guetta, Muntasser Shalaby, is being put on trial. The Israeli courts have approved the demolition of Shalaby’s home, which set off a new round of Palestinian protests. Adding an interesting twist to the general arguments about the demolition of terrorists’ homes, is the fact that Shalaby is separated from his wife in the West Bank and normally resides with his three other wives in Tucson, Arizona. It is unclear whether Shalaby wanted to punish his estranged West Bank wife, knowing that her house would be razed after the Israeli police captured him for the terrorist attack.

None of those facts and background were found in the BBC article.

The BBC deliberately opted to craft a story to make the Israeli army out to be thugs who maliciously shoot young Palestinians for simply protesting illegal Israeli activities, an industrial-grade blood libel. It not only marks the BBC as not a credible source for information but one that incites hatred and violence against Jews and the Jewish State.


Related First One Through articles:

BBC Welcomes Release of British Muslim Accused of Beheading Daniel Pearl

Every Picture Tells a Story: Israel Is Scared of Female Iranian Shoppers

The Nerve of ‘Judaizing’ Neighborhoods

Related First One Through music video:

The 2011 Massacre of the Fogels in Itamar (music by Gorecki)

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

The British and Arab Press Assail “Settlers” While the Israeli Media calls out “Right-Wing”

Roman Abramovich is a Russian billionaire who owns the Chelsea premier league soccer team. His dealings often make it onto the UK papers which love to gossip about the ultra-wealthy, especially those entangled with their favorite sport.

The British media went after Abramovich this week as he completed the trifecta of British obsession: his support of the Jewish State.

The BBC posted a video on September 21, 2020 called “FinCEN Files: The Israeli settlers Chelsea boss Arbramovich helped fund.” The inverted English title was a pretty good indication of the inversion of facts presented in the ten minute video including never stating that it was Yemenite Jews who founded the Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan in the 19th century (not Arabs the way BBC presented) and that the archaeological findings in the City of David are historical treasures for the entire world, not booty for the Jewish people.

Roman Abramovich featured in BBC

The Guardian loved the story and published a piece “Leaks show Chelsea owner Abramovich funded Israeli settler group.” The article wrote that

“four companies he [Abramovich] either owns or controls in the British Virgin Islands have contributed more than $100m (£74m) to Elad, a group that supports settlements in the Palestinian neighbourhood of occupied East Jerusalem called Silwan, BBC News Arabic reported.”

This “Palestinian neighborhood” was never contemplated to be part of a Palestinian state, and the Oslo Accords which the Palestinian Authority signed in 1995 acknowledge that Israel rules Jerusalem.

The article continued:

“The group, which also receives backing from the Israeli government, has sought to strengthen the Jewish presence in the neighbourhood of Silwan at the expense of its Arab residents.

Elad runs an archaeological site in Silwan called the City of David that has become a huge tourist attraction. The dig has been criticised by European Union diplomats as seeking to ignore the ancient city’s diverse history in favour of “an exclusively Jewish narrative, while detaching the place from its Palestinian surroundings”.”

The statement is ridiculous on many fronts. Arabs dwarf the number of Jews in the neighborhood today. Before the Yemenite Jews settled this area outside the Old City of Jerusalem’s walls in the 1880’s, no one lived in that land for centuries; the Arab history on the site is only 100 years old.

Outside of the British press, the biased story was repeated almost verbatim by Arab media outlets:

The left-wing Israeli press ran their own stories:

The TOI piece included this doozy:

“Elad also purchases homes in the surrounding Arab village of Silwan — sometimes via Muslim middlemen — and rents them to Jews, a move that has led to charges that it is fueling tensions in the city.”

The use of “Muslim middlemen” to procure property stems from the fact that the Palestinian Authority considers selling land to Jews a capital crime. Rather than denounce the sick anti-Semitic Palestinian law which kills Arabs for a natural human right of selling property to another person in the spirit of coexistence and commerce, the article inverted the charge against the group, Elad, claiming that it caused the tensions.

It is a sad commentary on the world today that a non-profit group which helps uncover the beauty of Jewish history and facilitates Jews buying homes in their holiest city in an area founded by Jews is controversial. That the British and Arab press held common cause in vilifying support for such “settler group” while the Israeli news called out the “right-wing group” says quite a bit about the racial and nationalistic lens shared by the UK and Arab world, as well as the partisan political orientation in Israel today.


Related First One Through articles:

The New York Times All Out Assault on Jewish Jerusalem

Real and Imagined Laws of Living in Silwan

The Subtle Discoloration of History: Shuafat

Obama’s Select Religious Compassion

Obama supports Anti-Semitic Palestinian Agenda of Jew-Free State

“Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem”

Ending Apartheid in Jerusalem

The New York Times Inverts the History of Jerusalem

The Nerve of ‘Judaizing’ Neighborhoods

BBC Welcomes Release of British Muslim Accused of Beheading Daniel Pearl

Al Jazeera’s Lies Call for Jihad Against the Jewish State

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis

BBC Welcomes Release of British Muslim Accused of Beheading Daniel Pearl

On April 2, 2020, a Pakistani court overturned the murder conviction of Omar Saeed Sheikh, a British national with a history of extremism for the beheading of American journalist Daniel Pearl in 2002.

Daniel Pearl, before his execution in 2002

According to the Wall Street Journal for whom Pearl worked, “the Karachi court, which heard Mr. Sheikh’s appeal last month, overturned convictions for murder and terrorism, the 40-page ruling said Thursday. The third conviction, kidnapping for ransom, was downgraded to simple kidnapping, and Mr. Sheikh’s sentence was reduced to seven years.” In response to the ruling, Dow Jones which owns the Journal stated “we continue to seek justice for the murder of Daniel Pearl.” Reporters Without Borders, an international watchdog group for journalists, called the decision “incoherent” and a “shocking denial of justice.”

Beyond the news services, a senior official at the U.S. State Department said “The overturning of the convictions for Daniel Pearl’s murder is an affront to victims of terrorism everywhere. Those responsible for Daniel’s heinous kidnapping and murder must face the full measure of justice.

The reaction from the British news service the BBC was seemingly the complete opposite.

The media service wrote that Sheikh’s “arrest and conviction in 2002 came in quick succession, at a time when Pakistan was under severe pressure from the United States to eliminate terror networks operating on its soil,” making the entire arrest of Sheikh seem like a sham witch hunt.

Rather than quote Dow Jones or Reporters Without Borders, the BBC wrote that “a group of US journalists, including former colleagues of Pearl, said in 2011 that they believed Sheikh had not carried out the beheading,” adding fuel to the reader that the conviction of Sheikh was never credible as even reporters and friends of Pearl believed Sheikh to be innocent.

BBC would not mention the reaction from the U.S. State Department, nor the reaction from Pearl’s father who had called it a “mockery of justice.

In providing background to the case, BBC ran a header “Longstanding questions over Sheikh’s conviction.” The article continued that “The main argument of the defence lawyers was that the prosecution had failed to prove their case beyond doubt. They may have a point. There have been questions over whether the four [Sheikh and three accomplices] had any direct role in Daniel Pearl’s murder, though there was some evidence to show Sheikh’s involvement in his kidnapping.” Complete editorializing in the middle of a news article does not seem an issue for the BBC editors.

The icing on BBC’s celebratory cake was the concluding paragraph:

“But the Pakistani judiciary has sat on his appeal for nearly two decades, and some observers believe the present ruling has come at a time when the mood in the US and the rest of the world has changed and nobody seems to be worried about the terrorists of the past.

Congratulations BBC. Your patriot who conspired with colleagues to kidnap and behead a 38-year old journalist and then cut up his body into pieces will soon be set free. He left behind a pregnant wife and the lingering final words “My father is Jewish. My mother is Jewish. I am a Jew.” But for the BBC, the true victim in the story is a British Muslim who unjustly lost 18 years of his life due to American-Zionist pressure.


Related First One Through articles:

Anti-Semitism Is Harder to Recognize Than Racism

Names and Narrative: It is Called ‘Area C’

Bernie Sanders’ Antisemitic and Anti-Zionist Friends

For The NY Times, Antisemitism Exists Because the Alt-Right is Racist and Israel is Racist

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough