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4. Palestinians on Purpose

 

FOR AGAINST

- Direction of the bullets indicating purpose: The bullets come from the Palestinian position across the road, and, as determined by ballistic experts, could have only come from across the road. Furthermore, since there was no crossfire at this time and the bullets were clearly single bullets (see scenario 3 discussion), the shots must have been intentionally fired.

- Evidence that the scene was deliberately set up:

  • Photographic evidence from three cameramen show the boy and father behind the barrel well before the shooting begins, suggesting a much greater probability that they were deliberately placed there, rather than chance pedestrians caught in a crossfire.
  • Bullet direction suggests setting the scene for filming. (Scenario 3)
  • At funeral, the mourners already have posters of the boy: In order for them to have this, they would have had to go to his home in El-Bureij, get a picture, make the poster and copy it for distribution all in approximately one to two hours. In the meantime, his mother claims that she didn't find out about his death until the later evening news.

- Motive: Immense PR victory for the Palestinians. This image provides the Palestinians with superb material for scapegoating Israel which they rapidly exploited. It permits them to:

- Culture of martyrdom among Palestinians: This horrific scenario, unthinkable to Liberal Cognitive Egocentrism is quite thinkable to the "cult of death" with which Palestinians indoctrinate their children. The highest honors are bestowed upon a shahid, both in the world he left behind and the world to which he ascends. There is certainly cynical use of children among Palestinians.

- Morally abhorrent position: Morally, this is a difficult position to take. This is unthinkable behavior for even one's worst enemy. Gabriel Weimmann, a professor at the Israeli Military Academy, who had his students try to prove the Israelis did not commit the murder, hesitates to believe this: "Maybe even it was staged-although I don't think my worst enemy is so inhuman as to shoot a boy for the sake of publicity." To believe this, one could easily fall into the trap of cynical and conspiratorial hatred, without regarding any contrary evidence. Fortunately we have a credible alternative to the notion that this was a "snuff film." The most compelling evidence against this approach lies in evidence that the boy was never shot.

- No blood: Talal claimed the boy was bleeding for 15 or 20 minutes from a stomach wound (which normally proves fatal from loss of blood)), but the tape does not show any blood on the ground where he lay, even the next day there is blood under the father’s place at the barrel, but not where Muhammed lay. Why would Talal not have gotten even a few seconds of the boy bleeding on the ground?

- No ambulance evacuation: Given how valuable ambulance evacuations are as footage and how quickly the ambulances tend to arrive, and the fact that we know an ambulance is in waiting just behind the boy and the father, one would expect a real case of evacuating the wounded to be extremely valuable. Given Talal's perfect positioning for filming an especially bloody scene of the wounded father and dead son, it seems incomprehensible that Talal has not one frame of an ambulance evacuation. Asked why not by Nahum Shahaf over the phone, he responds evasively: "because the ambulance driver was shot." Asked why he didn't take a picture of that, he responded, "because he was shot before he got to the boy." That of course does not explain why he did not photograph the eventual evacuation. Enderlin replies to both anomalies by claiming that Talal told him that he was running out of batteries, although if that were the case, why did he not just run out his camera on the scene in front of him rather than film a later, undistinguished ambulance scene?

- No shot of the boy arriving at the Hospital: And even if his camera battery were dead, Talal could have called ahead to Shiffa hospital to make sure that the arrival of the father and son would get filmed some half an hour later. But we have no shots from Shiffa hospital.

- No bullets recovered: Shiffa hospital, despite allegedly treating two people with a total of 8-12 bullet wounds, produced no bullets or bullet fragments. Nor did the Talal told Esther Schapira who examined the site the next day. Perhaps aware that the lack of bullets made his case weak, Palestinian Police "we have the bullets, the kind of the bullets, I photographed them." When Schapira asks where the bullets are Talal tells her to "consult the general… he could tell you." When Schapira points out that the General does not have any bullets, Talal, the only employee of France2 at the scene at that time claims: "France2 collected…". "So you're doing a better job than the investigators," Schapira responds as Talal registers the realization that his claim has no credibility. "No, no, no" Talal answers with a smile as he realizes that story won't work, "We…we… we have our secrets… we cannot give anything… just anything."

 

 

Those who adhere to this scenario: Very few people openly espouse this one, although those who do tend to know the material well, are familiar with the willingness of the Palestinian elites to sacrifice their children, and don't care about political correctness. Those few who have publicly argued this have suffered considerable damage. This view is supported by:

Yoseph Dorriel who was fired shortly after making these comments to the press, for publicizing conclusions before the investigation was completed.

David Kupelian (see here and here)
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