Many Western media outlets are being accused of bias in their reporting of the Israeli assault on Gaza. NBC News correspondent Ayman Moyheldin was taken off his assignment covering Gaza after he reported on the death of several Palestinian children who were killed by an Israeli strike as they were playing on a beach.
Moyheldin’s reassignment was allegedly due to security concerns, the sincerity of which was questioned when NBC replaced him with their top foreign correspondent Richard Engel.
The news agency did, however, return Mohyeldin to his assingnment in Gaza.
“Ayman Mohyeldin has done extraordinary reporting throughout the escalation of the conflict in Gaza, filing 25+ reports over the past 17 days, including his invaluable and well-documented contribution to the story on the deaths of the four Palestinian children on Wednesday,” NBC News said in a statement.
“As with any news team in conflict zones, deployments are constantly reassessed. We’ve carefully considered our deployment decisions and we will be sending Ayman back to Gaza over the weekend. We look forward to his contributions in the coming days.”
NBC is not the only news agency to face recent accusations of an Israeli-leaning bias in their coverage of the crisis in Gaza.
CNN correspondent Diana Magnay was pulled off her assignment in Gaza after she made a Twitter post where she described Israelis who were celebrating the killing of Palestinians as “scum”.
CNN correspondent Diana Magnay covering the Israeli strikes on Gaza (photo: CNN)
“I think you can probably see there are lots of Israelis gathered around who are cheering when they see these kinds of Israeli strikes,” Magnay said during a live report where people could be heard cheering in the background as Israeli missiles pounded the Gaza strip.
Following the report, Magnay tweeted: “Israelis on hill above Sderot cheer as bombs land on #gaza; threaten to ‘destroy our car if I say a word wrong’. Scum.”
A CNN spokeswoman told The Huffington Post that Magnay was “threatened and harassed” by the Israelis as she was attempting to cover the events on the scene.
“She deeply regrets the language used, which was aimed directly at those who had been targeting our crew,” the spokeswoman said. “She certainly meant no offense to anyone beyond that group, and she and CNN apologize for any offense that may have been taken.”
Questions also surrounded the objectivity of the New York Times when the publication changed the headline of a story covering the death of the Palestinian boys that were playing on the beach.
The original headline read “Four Young Boys Killed Playing on Gaza Beach”. Soon after, the headline was changed to “Boys Drawn to Gaza Beach, and Into Center of Mideast Strife,” in what some believe to be a distorting of the event in an attempt to shift the blame away from Israel.