Philippe Karsenty, the founder and president of Media-Ratings, has led a virtual one-man campaign to bring out the truth about Mohamed al-Dura, a 12-year-old boy who was allegedly shot by the Israelis in the crossfire between Israeli troops and Palestinian rioters at the Netzarim Junction in Gaza in 2001.
Video of the boy’s death was first broadcast on French television on September 30, 2000 as a “documentary” purporting to be an actual portrayal of the fighting between the Israeli Army and Palestinians. The video contains a scene of a father and son, huddled against a wall seeking cover from straying bullets. Minutes later, viewers are led to believe that Al-Dura had died from bullet wounds. The image of father and son has been canonized in much of the Arab world and provided the impetus for many acts of terror and worldwide denunciations against Israel.
Many have questioned the accuracy of the documentary, including Karsenty. In fact, Karsenty was sued for libel and acquitted of those charges in a French Court of law.
On November 21, 2008, Karsenty met with the Louis D. Brandeis Law Society in the offices of the Israel Consulate and carefully and methodically unraveled the false accusations of the French broadcast video. Relying upon PowerPoint images of the film, Karsenty made it abundantly clear that:
- If indeed, the young boy had been shot, the bullets could not have emanated from Israeli forces;
- The young boy had not been killed on location;
- No blood was later found on the father’s clothing;
- The reporter, Charles Enderlin, lied about being present during the incident and had substantially edited the footage taken by a Palestinian photographer who worked for the French broadcast network, France 2; and
- Much of the footage not shown to the public but presented by Mr. Karsenty revealed a staged battle with staged injuries.
The German public television station, ARD, broadcast a documentary on March 4, 2009 that purported to have confirmed the following facts:
- Thanks to a biometric analysis of the faces, it has been proven that the boy who was filmed by France 2 is not the boy presented at the Gaza morgue and buried later. The eyebrows and the lips are very different;
- German television used lip-reading techniques to read the father’s lips. They discovered that Jamal al Dura gave instructions to the people who were behind France 2’s cameraman during the filing of the scene;
- The boy filmed by France 2 moves a red piece of cloth down his body for no specific reason;
- In France 2’s news report, there is no blood – neither on Mohammed nor on Jamal al Dura’s body – whereas the two were supposed to have been struck by 15 bullets altogether;
- The boy shown at the funeral as Mohammed al Dura arrived at the hospital before 10 a.m., whereas France 2’s news report was filmed after 2:30 p.m.
Philippe Karsenty is continuing his worldwide efforts to bring forth the truth of this incident. A recent e-mail from him gave notice that upon the invitation extended by Baroness Cox, the Henry Jackson Society invited him to present evidence of the al Dura hoax on Wednesday, January 27, 2010 at the House of Lords. Karsenty cautions that his efforts should not let up, noting that nearly a year ago Charles Enderlin, the French-Israeli journalist responsible for the al Dura hoax, received the French Legion of Honor from the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. There is a relevant article in the Haaretz online newspaper from February 3, 2010 (click here to view), which discusses the failures on the part of the Israeli institutions to combat the false public accusations.
Karsenty’s company, Media-Ratings, is the first media ratings agency in the world that closely monitors French media outlets and, among other things, their anti-American and anti-Israeli bias. His recent message to me included an appeal for your involvement:
However, YOU can contribute to the redemption of Israel’s reputation by contacting the Israeli embassies and consulates by clicking here.
Also, please contact the French embassies abroad to express your disappointment and your reprobation by clicking here.
This is the first time I have called you to action.
If we are able to overwhelm these French and Israeli offices with phone calls and emails, things might change soon.
AUTHOR BIO: Phyllis Horn Epstein, Esquire is a member of the Brandeis Law Society’s Executive Committee and concentrates her practice in tax planning and litigation. She may be reached at (215) 563-1200 or Phyllis@eselaw.com.