Since photographs emerged of a CNN and Associated Press freelance photographer being kissed on the cheek by the man believed to have masterminded the Oct. 7 massacre of Jews in Israel, the two news organizations have gone into damage control mode.
They have supposedly cut ties with Hassan Eslaiah, who has been documenting the conflict between Israel and Hamas since Hamas’ first attack on Israel, without revealing that he has close ties to Hamas.
It took the work of a non-mainstream news organization, HonestReporting.com, which broke the story titled, “Broken Borders: AP & Reuters Pictures of Hamas Atrocities Raise Ethical Questions.”
In it, the reporters asked how this photographer and others even knew to be there on a sleepy Saturday to document what was to become the 9-11 for the State of Israel. Were the photographers tipped off?
“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,” HonestReporting wrote.
“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 story continues.
That and other questions have been raised about whether freelancers for the large news outlets, including others, such as Reuters and the New York Times, are really neutral, or if they have been coordinating with Hamas.
Were they journalists or infiltrators? Read the report at HonestReporting.com. It turns out, the ties may be might more sinister.
“Israeli journalist Amit Segal has posted video he said was from the Facebook page of Hassan Eslaiah — the same photographer seen sharing a kiss with the Hamas leader — in which Eslaiah is on the back of a motorcycle carrying what appears to be a hand grenade. Sharing a kiss with Hamas and — assuming the video shows what it appears to — wielding a hand grenade cannot be justified under any journalistic conventions,” wrote Philip Klein in the National Review.