This is not the first time that Rolling Stone has glamorized jihadis.
by Karen Bekker, CAMERA, August 3, 2023:
Although they’re slightly late to the party, Rolling Stone seems to have gotten the memo that the latest trend in antisemitic agitation posing as journalism is glamourizing young Palestinian terrorists. A nearly 6000-word piece by Jesse Rosenfeld – who has previously written for +972, The Nation, and Al Jazeera – fails to inform readers of Palestinian rejectionism, payments of salaries to convicted terrorists, or the effect of terror on Israeli society.
Instead, Rosenfeld portrays “Gen Z” terrorists as having no alternative but to take up arms against Israeli civilians: “‘Israel has left us no choice,’” he quotes his 22 year-old interview subject, a member of a Jenin-based terror cell, saying. “‘The occupation has proven that the more we are silent, the more it will take from us.’” What Israel has attempted to give to the Palestinians – that is, independence – isn’t mentioned.
And at the same time, the article portrays Israeli actions as wantonly evil. (“Generals, Peaceniks, and Palestinian Fighters Agree: Bibi Must Be Stopped,” July 22, reprinted on Yahoo.)
The piece brings to mind the adage that “a half-truth is a whole lie.” Consider the following passage from Rosenfeld’s article:
Elias and Mohammad al-Ashqar are in a state of shock. Sitting in the living room of their modest ground-floor family apartment in the Askar refugee camp on a brisk winter evening, they are surrounded by men from the community. The al-Ashqar brothers’ father, 61-year-old Abdel Hadi, had been shot and killed during an Israeli-army raid in the adjacent northern West Bank city of Nablus hours earlier.
The Israeli army stormed the crowded city at 10 a.m., opening fire as residents scrambled, abandoning their midmorning shopping to run for their lives down the winding streets.
Several paragraphs later, Rosenfeld does add that “the bloody Feb. 22 raid-turned-firefight was directed against the Lions’ Den.” From his description of events, however, a reader could easily think the IDF opened fire on Palestinian civilians for no reason at all. In fact, the Times of Israel reported, “The Israel Defense Forces said troops had entered Nablus to arrest [Hussam Bassam] Isleem, a senior member of the Lion’s Den terror group, who was allegedly the third member of a cell that killed Staff Sgt. Ido Baruch during a shooting attack in October.” According to a military source, “soldiers surrounded a home where three suspects, all members of the Lion’s Den terror group, were holed up, demanding they turn themselves in,” a gun battle broke out between the members of the terror cell and the IDF, and civilians were tragically killed in the crossfire. But Rolling Stone would prefer its readers to think the Ashqar brothers’ grief is solely a result of gratuitous Israeli violence.
This is typical of the nature of the entire piece, which is so one-sided as to be grossly dishonest. As another example, Rosenfeld tells us that in 2022, “29 Israelis were killed in Palestinian attacks.” But he did not humanize a single one of those Israelis, or the 20 civilians, including four children, that were killed so far in 2023, with the kind of story that he told about the Ashqar family. Posting the article, Rosenfeld tweeted, “I spoke to Palestinian fighters, leaders and occupied residents; former Israeli PM’s, a Shin Bet officer, a General and an army refusnik for this @RollingStone long read about Palestinian revolt in West Bank and unprecedented mass protest in Israel.” But he doesn’t appear to have spoken to any of the Israelis whose family members were lost to the terrorism he glamorizes, or those whose day-to-day lives have been damaged because of it.
Nor does he, in a 6000-word piece that took several months to report, relay any conversations with any members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s own party, or with any of the approximately one million Israelis who voted for it. He does, however, speak to many Israelis who oppose Netanyahu. The Palestinian Authority has exacted retribution on its critics in the past, which is presumably at least one reason why Rosenfeld’s Palestinian interview subject “Abu Nidal,” uses a pseudonym. But the many opponents of the Netanyahu government in Israel, including his political rivals, feel free to speak openly to Rosenfeld, who obligingly quotes them at length and uncritically. They know that no harm will come to them as a result of their words….
EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.