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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Max Blumenthal is not a journalist by any definition

Max Blumenthal is a self-described journalist who has written op-ed pieces in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, The Guardian and elsewhere. He is considered respectable.

And a single tweet by him shows how he is anything but respectable, and anything but a journalist.

He first retweeted a link to an article from the pro-Hamas Middle East Monitor, quoting (but not linking to) a PLO document that claims that Israel killed 180 Palestinian Arabs in 2011.

But then he tweeted a "correction":

Update/correction via : 239 Palestinians killed by Israelis/Israeli forces in 2011

He didn't check the link for accuracy. He was sent a message that the real number of dead Arabs is much higher, and based only on that information he issued a "correction."

A quick look at the Occupied Palestine webpage shows that they list all people they consider "martyrs," but they are not claiming that Israel killed them all. This distinction is lost on Max, of course, who stated flatly that Israelis killed "239 Palestinians" in 2011. He didn't simply retweet - he added his own "facts."

So the ersatz journalist Blumenthal believes that the following people were killed by Israel:




Blumenthal didn't check this out - even though the links to most of the "martyrs" are right there on the website. No, he reflexively believes that whatever number is higher must be the true one. If a random person would have tweeted that the real number was 372, he would have believed it without hesitation.

By the way, the Al-Dameer Association for Human Rights counts 91 people killed by Israel in 2011. OCHA counts 115 up until December 20th.

The IDF number is somewhere in between, saying that about 100 were killed in military operations this year. And that only nine of them were civilians.

Which one is true? That would require research and skepticism. Only a journalist would bother to do all that work. And Blumenthal is no journalist.

He's a hack who will repeat whatever comes his way, as long as it conforms to his pre-existing hate of Israel.