Ma’an News reports on the supposed Israeli targeting of an innocent palestinian boy.
Yahiya Sami al-Amudi, 10, was walking near a checkpoint by the East Jerusalem refugee camp when he was shot by the bullet.
He was taken to the Hadassa hospital in Ein Karem with a fractured skull, jaw, and left ear and had surgery to remove his left eye.
Medics said he is in a critical condition.
Press TV are even less subtle, reporting something similar but with a totally out-of-place photo.
As usual when reading such reports – especially from these biased sources – my BS detectors start sounding off. So I do what everyone else should do – read other sources to try to understand what actually happened.
Here’s what I found out.
According to Israeli police, rioters began to throw stones at Border policemen who were guarding public works projects. The boy was either one of those rioters or at least among them. In other words, this was not the case of some kid just walking near a checkpoint and Israeli border policemen deciding to play “duck-shoot” with him as the duck.
The Israel-hating brigade might claim we cannot go by the word of the Israeli police, to which I would argue that you need to exercise judgement and common sense regarding which version to believe. Based on the palestinian and anti-Israel Israel news agencies’ propensity to lie – or at least to rely on those who do – I would be inclined to believe the police. Then there’s also the fact that while I have not been able to locate video of yesterday’s disturbances, we do know this kind of thing goes on at Shufat. Here is an example from late last year of what residents get up to against Israeli police.
Notice the presence of kids in this video.
Here is another example.
This all looks like potentially deadly force to me.
So let’s agree in all likelihood, the boy was either a rioter or walking among them.
Next we have the issue of the type of bullet. Ma’an claims it was rubber-coated, which were prohibited by the Orr Commission report, following the October 2000 riots.
46. The committee determined that rubber-coated bullets are not appropriate for use due to their risk. It was determined that the police should remove them from use. It was emphasized that this does not prevent the police from deploying other kinetic means, including rubber ones.
But sure enough, other reports indicate it was a foam-coated one, and we know that since the prohibition, the Israeli police has been using 40mm-caliber sponge rounds imported from the United States, in East Jerusalem.
Interestingly, the Jewish Forward reports it as follows:
10-Year-Old Palestinian Shot in Face With Rubber Bullet
10-year-old Palestinian boy was shot in the face with a foam bullet during clashes between Israel’s Border Police and young Palestinians in eastern Jerusalem.
Palestinians in the Shuafat refugee camp were throwing rocks at the officers, who were guarding maintenance workers. The officers responded with crowd control measures, including shooting foam-covered bullets.
So this might be a case of lazy journalism. Either way, it is lethal journalism.
And what about the nature of the boy’s injuries? Ma’an reported palestinian medics claims he is in critical condition, while Israeli police characterized it as “moderately injured.” I am no doctor, but according to online sources, “critical” condition means the patient has unstable vitals that are not normal, and could be unconscious, while indicators for recovery are unfavorable. In contrast, moderate or fair condition is where the patient’s vital signs are stable and normal, the patient is conscious, he or she might be uncomfortable, but indicators for recovery are favorable.
Now look again at the photo from Ma’an News.
The boy seems conscious and responsive, and the absence of all manner of tubes would indicate to me his vital signs are stable.
The moral of the story: When there are conflicting sources, do your own research to decide which to believe. That is what I do, and – shock horror – the anti-Israel sources are invariably those telling porky pies.
Oh, and don’t attack policemen or be among those who do.