News item from the Ottawa Citizen, April 8:
Mideast. Teen feared dead returns home
A Palestinian teenager who went missing near the Gaza border last week and was believed to have been killed by Israeli troops has returned home safe after being detained in Egypt, he said on Sunday. Mohammed al-Faramawi, 15, said he had gone with some friends to Gaza's defunct airport near the borders with Israel and Egypt last Monday "for fun" when they found a smuggling tunnel to Egypt and crawled through it. They were promptly arrested by Egyptian security forces on the other side and held for several days. On Tuesday, the day after he disappeared, Palestinian medics and media reported he had been shot dead by Israeli forces near the border.
In a letter to the Citizen, "Imaginary crimes," published April 10, Joseph Alexander Norland explains the significance of this:
Re: Teen feared dead returns home, April 8.
I commend the Citizen for publishing this news item because it reflects the way the anti-Israel propaganda machine works. On the slightest pretext and the flimsiest of evidence, Israel stands accused for imaginary crimes big and small.
Readers who follow Middle East news will remember the story about Mohammed al Dura, a young boy who was supposedly shot dead by Israeli troops. The story was later exposed as a hoax but the damage to Israel's reputation was done.
On a larger and more ominous scale, the entire Goldstone Report is based on the same type of evidence as that described in the Citizen's story, complete with testimony by "Palestinian medics and media."
The next time one hears about "atrocities" committed by Israel, one should remember this Citizen story about the Palestinian teen.
Joseph Alexander Norland,
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