Editor’s note: The Weekly Standard’s Daniel Halper broke this story yesterday.
Every year in its Journalists Memorial, the Newseum honors journalists slain in the field. But its decision to include Hussam Salama and Mahmoud Al-Kumi in this year’s memorial is drawing heavy criticism. The two worked as journalists for Al-Aqsa TV, which is affiliated with terrorist group Hamas, and were reportedly Hamas operatives.
More from Philip Klein:
In 2010, Al-Aqsa was designated by the U.S. Department of Treasury as a terrorist group, because it was “financed and controlled” by Palestinian terrorist group Hamas. According to the Treasury press release, “Al-Aqsa is a primary Hamas media outlet and airs programs and music videos designed to recruit children to become Hamas armed fighters and suicide bombers upon reaching adulthood.”
Yet the Newseum is choosing to lump the likes of Salama and Al-Kumi in with previous honoree Daniel Pearl, kidnapped and murdered by al Qaida in 2002? What does it say about the Newseum’s integrity?
About its regard for genuinely brave men and women killed in their pursuit of the truth, as opposed to flacks helping to promote a cowardly, murderous agenda?
What kind of people is the Newseum really honoring?
Several Twitterers pointed out that this decision puts actual reporters in danger:
Shame on the Newseum.
The Newseum has reversed its decision to honor Hussam Salama and Mahmoud Al-Kumi:
“Serious questions have been raised as to whether two of the individuals included on our initial list of journalists who died covering the news this past year were truly journalists or whether they were engaged in terrorist activities,” a Newseum spokesman said in a statement.
‘We take the concerns raised about these two men seriously and have decided to re-evaluate their inclusion as journalists on our memorial wall pending further investigation,” the spokesman said.
A step in the right direction.