The Washington media’s monument to itself, the Newseum, has created a firestorm by choosing to honor two terrorists working for an Hamas owned “news” outlet killed by Israelis during the Gaza conflict.
Buzzfeed reports in the statement sent out by Jonathan Thompson, a spokesman for the Newseum:
The Newseum Journalists Memorial recognizes 2,246 journalists who died or were killed while reporting the news. To be listed on the memorial, an individual must have been a contributor of news, commentary or photography to a news outlet; an editor or news executive; a producer, camera operator, sound engineer or other member of a broadcast crew; or a documentary filmmaker.
Hussam Salama and Mahmoud Al-Kumi were cameramen in a car clearly marked “TV.” The Committee to Protect Journalists, Reporters Without Borders and The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers all consider these men journalists killed in the line duty.
The Journalists Memorial selection committee conducts case-by-case reviews using the above criteria.
Also included in the memorial this year are 82 other journalists who died in 2012 and six additional journalists who died in previous years. For a complete list of journalists on the memorial, visit the online Newseum Journalists Memorial database.
The explanation is almost worse than the honor. According to Thompson, any terrorist can paint “TV” on his jeep and run around as a martyr. That not only imperils victims of terrorists, but it puts real journalists in mortal danger. Real news vans marked “TV” will now be suspected terrorists in the eyes of soldiers.
Understand that not only the U.S. government but the French recognized that Al-Aqsa TV was not a legitimate news organization. Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) reported:
On March 18, 2010, the U.S. Treasury Department imposed sanctions against two Hamas-linked organizations in Gaza – Al-Aqsa TV and the Islamic National Bank (INB). The actions, taken pursuant to Executive Order 13224, freeze any assets that Al-Aqsa TV or INB hold under U.S. jurisdiction and prohibit U.S. persons from engaging in any transactions with them. The targets of the sanctions include terrorists and terrorist organizations, among others.
These are not legitimate journalists in the eyes of Western governments, so why is Newseum sullying its building by honoring them? You got me.
On the board of trustees of the Newseum are figures such as Margaret Carlson of Bloomberg News, Michael Regan of News Corp., and Judy Woodruff. What say you all?