Tag Archives: aftonbladet

Are Newspapers Responsible For Spreading Hate?

An August story in the Swedish newspaper, Aftonbladet described Israel soldiers plundering Arab bodies for body parts in order to make money. Aftonbladet has argued it simply presented a story written by a reporter and their editors refuse to acknowledge there were factual errors in the story even though one editor admitted in his blog that Aftonbladet had no evidence to support charges of organ stealing in the article. Instead, the editors rap themselves in the covering of “freedom of the press” to support their right to print what they desire. It is one thing to print what one desires, it is another to spread hate and refuse to admit mistakes.

Andrea Levin of the Committee for Accuracy In Middle East Reporting blasted the Swedish newspaper for unleashing a series of hate filled articles throughout the Arab world about Jews stealing body parts. Articles about the alleged organ thievery have appeared in newspapers in Syria, Qatar, Jordan, the UAE, and Oman as well as in other areas containing large numbers of Muslims. The stories usually are accompanied by pictures of Jews devouring children or innocent people.

No one denies the right of Aftonbladet to print whatever it desires. However, if a story that appeared in the newspaper contained misleading and inaccurate information it is the responsibility of its editors to correct the mistakes.

Aftonbladet And Freedom Of The Press

Israelis have every right to be upset by the recent Aftonbladet story which was based on rumors and lacked an concrete evidence to support allegations that members of the IDF killed Palestinians in order to harvest organs for sale. Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini met with Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt in an effort to tone down the firestorm of anger which article sparked. “There are limits to freedom of the press, ” he said, “that stem from respect for the truth.” A noble expression, but, unfortunately, members of the media have the right to spew their hatred to a gullible audience.

Anyone who has been around the US these past few months has witnessed an explosion of lies, distortion and mockery of the truth by those who hate Barack Obama. The Aftonbladet article does not contain any actual evidence and, most probably, is the creation of one sick mind. However, we people have the right to be bigots, stupid, and hateful. We can not legislate the right of an individual to hate the truth. Mock them, respond to them, but do not silence these voices of anger and lies. The court of public opinion retains the right to be lied to, it retains the right to read hatred/

Israelis have to take a deep breath and relax. We Americans are enduring a campaign of hatred such as few nations have endured. We will make it through the night without imposing censorship on the haters.

Aftonbladet Guilty Of Spreading Lies!

The right of Palestinian people to have their independent nation and to reclaim the West Bank from the illegal actions of the Israel government continually are discussed on this blog, but the recent story in Aftonbladet is shocking because it allows those who have violated international law to escape by citing the trash published by the Swedish newspaper. Donald Bostrom presented a story that contained no hard evidence, no attempt to contact Israel institutions like Forensic laboratories and constantly refers to vague references to those who can prove what he wrote is correct. As David Stavrou, writing in The Local, notes: “anything goes as long as it can summon up the words, Israel, war-crimes, and stolen organs. Bostrom mentions interviewing an Israel soldier but no name is cited or how he relates to the alleged stolen organ fairy tale.

Stavrou raises an important point about the story. If the aim of the IDF was to kill and then harvest organs why did they shoot victims in the chest and stomach which would most probably destroy the organs they wanted? Bostrom simply is trying to sell the old “blood libel” story of Jews that is used by anti-semites.

It is important for those who seek peace in the Middle East to avoid providing ammunition to haters on either side. The Aftonbladet article has provided right wing Israelis evidence the world is against their nation. Focus on peace, not hysteria.

Is It Anti-Swedish To Claim Aftonbladet Run By Bigots?

The newspaper Aftonbladet has been reported to the Chancellor of Justice for its story about Israel Defense Forces harvesting Palestinian organs after killing people. Asa Linderborg, cultural editor of the paper, is upset. “Is that true? I am perplexed. I think it is a shame that whenever solidarity is shown for the Palestinians and criticism is directed against Israel, someone cries anti-Semitism. One has a right to ask questions.”

Yes, one has a right to ask questions particularly to a newspaper which smears an entire nation on the basis of rumor, not evidence. Ibrahim Ghanem, a relative of Bilal Ahmed Ghanem who was at the center of the story, apparently is also confused and perplexed by the story. “Maybe the journalist reached the conclusion on the basis of stitches he saw on the body.” As far as the family is concerned no organs were taken from the body and the only thing missing were teeth.

As a blog which strongly supports the right of Palestinian people to have their own nation, we believe smear jobs like that of Aftonbladet damage the rights of Palestinians. The last thing needed is to spread hysteria and further strengthen forces who oppose peace and reconciliation with Israel. On the Israel side are bigots like Avigdor Lieberman, and on the other side are bigots like Aftonbladet.