Thursday, 8 July 2010

CNN Fires Terrorist-Supporting Editor

CNN have been forced to fire their senior editor of Middle East affairs, Octavia Nasr, over this tweet she posted on Sunday:
"Sad to hear of the passing of Sayyed Mohammad Hussein Fadlallah.. One of Hezbollah's giants I respect a lot.."
Honest Reporting wonder what it is about Fadlallah that Nasr respects - his support for Hezbollah, who comment on "the necessity for the destruction of Israel", his links to terrorism, or perhaps his Holocaust denial. 
HR also point to how on his death bed, when asked by a nurse what he needed, he answered, "for the Zionist entity to cease to exist". And one of his last acts before he died was to issue a fatwa authorising the use of suicide bomb attacks.
Whilst Nasr's Lebanese background should not have been a problem in hiring her as senior editor of Middle East affairs, her being a terrorist sympathiser is.
"It was an error of judgment for me to write such a simplistic comment and I'm sorry because it conveyed that I supported Fadlallah's life's work. That's not the case at all.
She then rambled on trying to explain why she does and doesn't respect Fadlallah.
This wasn't enough for CNN though, who fired her, explaining that 
"At this point, we believe that her credibility in her position as senior editor for Middle Eastern affairs has been compromised going forward".
What they mean is that, although she's been working for them for 20 years, as a pro-Palestinian, pro-Hezbollah, and very obviously anti-Israel reporter/editor, her bias wasn't obvious enough to raise questions about her loyalties and commitment to journalistic integrity - until now.
The Augean Stables blog has more on her reporting. AS also links to the Guardian's sickening obituary by Ian Williams, who really rivals Nasr's tweet in mourning the terrorist Fadlallah as a "moderate" deserving of respect. The Guardian obviously take their own standards a lot less seriously than CNN, and so would doubtlessly be more likely to promote Williams to Middle East Editor than they would to fire him for writing such a loving obituary for a terrorist.
UPDATE: Elder of Ziyon links to another fan of Fadlallah, this one Britain's ambassador to Lebanon, who wrote on her blog on the official British foreign office website, that "The world needs more men like him".
The result? The piece was removed and she wrote a very insincere "apology", almost identical to that of the CNN's Octavia Nasr. More on this from Robin Shepherd.
On the subject of Hezbollah, EoZ highlights the evidence that even whilst there currently is no war between Israel and Hezbollah, Hezbollah are committing war crimes, storing weapons near schools and hospitals in civilian villages, deliberately using the residents as human shields.

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