Terror Victims Sue Associated Press over Alleged Link to October 7 Attack

FILE - Palestinians transport a captured Israeli civilian from Kfar Azza kibbutz into the
Associated Press

Victims of the Hamas terror attack in Israel on October 7 announced Thursday that they have filed a federal lawsuit against the Associated Press (AP) for allegedly paying members of Hamas who also functioned as “stringer” photographers for the company.

The AP was forced to cut ties with one freelance photographer, Hassan Eslaiah, who was seen holding a grenade near the Gaza border during the attack, and who had earlier posed for a photograph with Gaza-based Hamas terrorist leader Yahya Sinwar.

Later, an AP freelancer was reported by the HonestReporting watchdog organization to have broadcast a live video, along with a Reuters freelance photographer, allegedly encouraging Gazans to participate in the October 7 attack while it was still ongoing.

In a press statement Thursday, the National Jewish Advocacy Center, Inc. (NJAC) said:

The National Jewish Advocacy Center, Inc. (NJAC), working with attorneys from the Law Office of David I. Schoen; Mark Migdal & Hayden; LSN Law, PA; and Goldfeder and Terry, LLC, has filed a federal complaint in the Southern District of Florida on behalf of Plaintiffs affected by the October 7, 2023 terrorist attack by Hamas, against Defendant The Associated Press (AP) alleging that the AP materially supported terrorism through payments that they made to known agents of Hamas.

On and after October 7, several major media outlets posted photographs of the atrocities Hamas committed. The AP paid for some of these real time images, including of Israeli hostages being taken into Gaza, despite having been warned well in advance that at least one of the so-called “journalists” they were paying were in fact Hamas affiliates, and despite the clear indications that they were functioning as full participants in the Hamas terrorist squad that conducted the October 7th attack, and not as the AP chose to pretend, as journalists. In doing so, the lawsuit alleges, AP aided and abetted Hamas in carrying out the worst massacre of Jews since the Holocaust. The Plaintiffs in this case include survivors of the attacks, family members of those murdered, and innocent civilians displaced from their homes because of Hamas’s action.

The legal team, under lead attorney David Schoen, reached out to the AP before filing, “but the AP flatly denied what has been established by demonstrable evidence – that the AP was told long ago that at least one of the people they were paying was affiliated with Hamas. In fact, this arrangement was such an open secret that a picture one of their photographers posted three years ago of himself being kissed by the demented arch terrorist Sinwar has been widely displayed by the media.”

“The First Amendment and core free-speech principles certainly protect the AP’s right to hold and to publish even highly offensive views,” said Mark Goldfeder, Director of NJAC. “But the allegations in this lawsuit have absolutely nothing to do with what AP said, and everything to do with what they did. Media organizations don’t have any special right to act with impunity and pretend that they don’t know whom they are paying. Nor does it matter that they were freelancers; the issue is that AP was furnishing material support to a foreign terrorist organization, not in what capacity the terrorists were cashing the checks. We hope that a suit like this can draw a line in the sand and provide some basic level of accountability.”

Separately, a New York Times photographer who had been accused of accompanying Hamas terrorists on October 7 won a prestigious George Polk Award for his coverage of the war.

As Breitbart News reported last year, the Times denied any wrongdoing.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent book, “The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it),” now available on Audible. He is also the author of the e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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