MSNBC correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin, a reporter with a history of anti-Israel bias, suggested during an on-air segment Wednesday that a terrorist who had been killed after attacking Israeli police was unharmed. Mohyeldin was immediately corrected by anchor Jose Diaz-Balart, who pointed out that the accompanying video clearly showed that the terrorist was, in fact, holding a knife.
At 2:10 in the video embedded below, Mohyeldin started describing the terrorist as he fled, observing that “he did not look to be particularly armed,” and after he was killed, “there was no gun that was visible.” As he continued describing what he saw after the terrorist was killed, Mohyeldin said, “Both of his hands were open and both of his hands did not have a knife.”
Diaz-Balart then jumped in to correct Mohyeldin.
You’re covering this story live. You’re seeing it once and you’re actually witnessing it not knowing what you’re seeing til you actually process it. But in the video that we have that you have … as you say … I don’t think anyone else has this video … we can clearly see the man in camouflage t-shirt and pants with what appears to be at least in his right hand, a knife. And here take a look at this video right now. I can’t … really determine what he has on his left hand, but he’s holding something in his left hand and … in his right hand, it’s fisted, and you see coming out of the fist what appears to be, like, at least a five inch or longer black blade.
During Operation Protective Edge last year, NBC pulled Mohyeldin out of Gaza after he sarcastically accused Israel of killing four teens in a Facebook post, writing: “The #US State Department Spokesperson just said that #Hamas is ultimately responsible for #Israel shelling and killing 4 boys who were cousins aged 9-11 because Hamas didn’t accept the #ceasefire. Discuss among yourselves.”
He was later sent back to Gaza, where he reported that an Israel drone had struck a hospital. NBC was forced to delete a portion of his report in which he claimed that he had seen an Israeli drone fire at the hospital. An Italian journalist who had actually witnessed the attack confirmed that Hamas, not Israeli forces, had been responsible for the rocket strike that destroyed the hospital.
Prior to joining NBC, Mohyeldin worked for Al Jazeera. In 2009 the Canadian Broadcasting Company’s ombudsman upheld a complaint against Mohyeldin, stating that one of his reports—asserting that some United Nations employees had “obviously been targeted” by Israel—“did not meet the standards of accuracy and fairness within the CBC’s Journalistic Standards and Practices.”
On Wednesday, a column at Mediaite, a media criticism website, took note of a recent media trend portraying Palestinian terror attacks on Israelis inaccurately. “The omission of information intentionally distorts the truth and makes the heroes of the story the villains,” it observed.
Mohyeldin is not the only reporter from his network to be the subject of accusations of biased and inaccurate reporting. NBC’s Bill Neely, while narrating a video of the incident in which the knife is clearly visible in the terrorist’s hand, equivocated over the danger the terrorist posed to the public: “Now, there is dispute about what happened. Some Palestinians who are here say the man posed no threat whatsoever. The police, however, say that he posed a deadly threat, that he had a knife, and was running toward a security guard escorting a family.”
[Photo: A1. / YouTube ]