Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Egyptian media: "127 North Koreans to join IDF"

From Al Masry Al Youm, Shorouk News and others:
"The Jerusalem Post" reports that an Israeli plane carrying about 350 migrants from North Korea, including 127 young men and women scheduled to join the Israeli army, arrived in Israel on Tuesday morning.

The newspaper reported the news on its website Tuesday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be at the airport to welcome these immigrants.

It noted out that this trip has been organized in cooperation with the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption of Israel, the Jewish Agency for Israel and others.
This gives a whole new meaning to "Axis of Evil," doesn't it?

The explanation for the bizarre story is at the Daily News Egypt website:
Inaccurate reports that 127 North Korean immigrants arrived in Israel on Tuesday morning to join the Israeli defense forces stormed the Egyptian media, which widely reported the story and attributed their reporting to the Jerusalem Post and the Egyptian state news agency MENA.

Ahmed Kashkoosh, Managing Arabic Desk Editor at MENA said the misreporting was probably a translation mistake perhaps made because the translator was fasting for Ramadan.

The Jerusalem Post website reported, “A flight carrying some 350 olim [immigrants] from North America including 127 young men and women set to join the Israel Defence Forces arrived in Israel Tuesday morning.”

The Egyptian newspapers and websites, however, published the story with headlines including, “The Israeli Army Recruits 127 People from North Korea” and some of them even repeated it within their article, while Akhbar-el-Youm wrote that the plane carried North Americans in the article but said Koreans in the headline.

The viral circulation of such false information in major Egyptian newspapers indicates continuity of the trend of poor information verification, a trend that sometimes led to basing news on hoaxes. In July it was widely reported in the Egyptian media that a Bahraini cleric was calling to destroy the pyramids. The story was later revealed to be a hoax.

(h/t Emet)