The Camera is Mightier Than the Sword - Israeli Police Caught in Lie
This is my translation of excerpts from Sophia Ron-Moriah's article in this past week's Makor Rishon. Found in the Weekly Diary section, dated February 10, 2006, titled: "Gam Hiku, Gam Shikru" (Not Only Did They Hit, But They Lied Also).
Sophia Ron-Moriah opens her article with a short explanation of how MK Effie Eitam's spokesman, Avi Lerner, received a request for Eitam to appear on Yair Lapid's television program (known for his sympathetic treatment of his interviewees). The request was made the day after the Amona incident, Thursday, February 2nd. On Sunday, February 5th the request was cancelled. Lapid had decided to interview Moshe Karadi, the Chief of Police, instead.
What caused this change? The police media campaign over the intervening Sabbath that Eitam was not, in fact, injured by police, but by a rock thrown by a protester.The pictures supposedly proving this assertion were aired on television on the Sabbath, when both Eitam and his spokesman, Lerner, could not respond, as they are both Sabbath observers (a fact which is known by the TV producers of this show).
Moriah describes the specific incident of MK Eitam's injury as follows:
"MK Effie Eitam stood with the other MK's [Aryeh Eldad, Benny Elon, and Uri Ariel, ed
] facing the police. Eitam, who had experience dealing with the police from the evacuation of Gush Katif, wanted to prevent violence and went looking for a commanding officer. Noone paid him any attention. Suddenly a group of policemen on horses bore down on him. Makor Rishon camerawoman, Miriam Tzachi, who was on the scene, described what happened. Eitam was injured both by a horse's hoof and he was hit in the head by a police baton. Tzachi continued to film the incident. In the pictures you see Eitam fall to the ground. Then the horses move backwards, and storm a group of protesters on the other side. Eitam, who was afraid that he would be trampled by the horses again, got up and began walking away. This is the picture that the police presented - Eitam walking with a bleeding head wound among many policemen."
Moriah goes on to explain in her article that the police spokesmen showed two pictures - one from before the incident, when Eitam is not injured, and one from after the incident, when Eitam is walking among the policemen. They claimed in the TV show aired that Friday night, that there were no horses in the area, and that Eitam was injured by a rock thrown from behind - which is strange in itself because his injury was in the front of his head.
[great policework, eh? ed
Miriam Tzachi's photograph's, proving that the police version was a lie, was shown for the first time on Monday, February 6th on the program "Erev Chadash". They were shown again during the stormy Security and Foreign Affairs Committee meeting, which was held on Wednesday, February 8th. The police representative present at this meeting, Machoz Shai Commander, Yisrael Yitzchak, had no response to the evidence that the police lied. [they do know how to plead the fifth, ed
Moriah further quotes Eitam, from the same meeting, who said that he knows now what it is like to be an innocent citizen who has been framed by the police.
I have been following the news closely, and I did not read about any of this in the mainstream media. There was one cryptic sentence in a Jerusalem Post article about a controversy regarding film versions of the incident, but that was all.
Kudos to Miriam Tzachi for her professionalism, and kudos to Sophia Ron-Moriah for her reporting.
And last, but not least, a message to the police - from me. THE LEFT MAY CONTROL MOST OF THE MAIN STREAM MEDIA, BUT IT DOESN'T CONTROL THEM ALL.
And it certainly doesn't control the blogs.
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