Emmett Tyrrell

WASHINGTON -- Recently in Washington the Newseum was saved from what could have been a very embarrassing event. Or maybe the people who run the Newseum would not have been embarrassed, but the institution was saved anyway. The Newseum is an interactive museum dedicated to the study of news and journalism. It was going to honor two terrorists as journalists before genuine journalists intervened.

On a wall dedicated to journalists who have perished while pursuing a story, such as the Wall Street Journal's Daniel Pearl, who was beheaded by Islamofascists, the two deceased terrorists would have been solemnized. The wall is dedicated to "reporters, photographers and broadcasters who have died reporting the news." The Newseum proposed to solemnize Mahmoud Al-Kumi and Hussam Salama, presumably because they were incinerated by an Israeli missile last year. But their deaths came during Israel's hostilities with Hamas, and the Israelis had every reason to believe that they were not reporters but terrorists. The United States government concurs.

The men worked for Al-Aqsa television, and Al-Aqsa television was designated a terrorist organization in 2010 by the U.S. Treasury. The organization is part of Hamas. As to the programming of Al-Aqsa, the Treasury's Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence has concluded it "airs programs and music videos designated to recruit children to become Hamas armed fighters and suicide bombers." For instance, among the videos it airs is one that calls upon Allah to exterminate Jews, Christians and communists -- "kill them to the last one, and don't leave even one." Not even the communists!

Al-Kumi and Salama at the time of their death were riding about in a car with "TV" hastily sprayed on its hood. There was no one else in the car, not a photographer, not a reporter. Similarly Hamas' fighters have used Red Crescent ambulances to transport arms, materiel and even its fighters. They locate command posts in civilian population centers and close to mosques. When our government and the government of Israel have declared Al-Aqsa a terrorists organization, I would think the Newseum would steer clear of honoring Al-Aqsa's fallen.

Emmett Tyrrell

R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is founder and editor in chief of The American Spectator and co-author of Madame Hillary: The Dark Road to the White House.
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