What really happened in Bilin and how the New York Times got it wrong

The New York Times‘ Israeli reporter, Isabel Kershner, didn’t witness the demonstration in Bilin that resulted in Jawaher Abu Rahme losing her life.

Felice Gelman was there and describes how the Times got the story wrong:

I can say that Isabel Kershner’s comment in the New York Times, that these demonstrations “inevitably end in clashes, with young Palestinians hurling stones and the Israeli security forces firing tear gas, stun grenades and rubber bullets” completely reverses the course of events. The IOF commenced firing tear gas long before any demonstrators neared them. There was little stone throwing during the demonstration and it did not commence until long after the tear gas.

For a group of demonstrators that got closer than I did (maybe 100 yards or so from the IOF), the soldiers fired a tear gas barrage in front of them, then behind them — trapping them. Then numerous tear gas canisters were fired into the center of the group — clearly a punitive, not defensive, action.

In addition, the IDF spokeman is claiming that Jawaher Abu Rahme was released from the Ramallah hospital and died at home. This is just an effort to complicate the chain of evidence that she was asphyxiated by tear gas. She died at 9 am in the morning at the hospital and many people, including Andrew el Kadi, waited there until her body was brought out to be taken to Bil’in for burial.

New York Times — all the news that’s fit to print!

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