No one can fault Larry Derfner for lack of effort. But his research skills seem to need honing. He called Charles Enderlin before writing his next contribution to the al Durah affair, but not Esther Schapira. He cites her, along with two other “highly respected, disinterested journalists” whom he trusts much more than the “right-wing Jewish writers continually piling up the ‘evidence’ for their conspiracy theories” (among whom he includes me). At one point he invokes Schapira to make the following point:
Furthermore, that each of these investigators [Schapira, Leconte, Jeambar, Weimann] also dismissed the possibility that the shooting was “staged” – I think that alone is reason enough to brush aside the idea that Abu Rahme, the al-Duras and a cast of helpers pulled off a colossal hoax to blacken Israel’s name by faking the death of a 12-year-old boy.
Esther Schapira, with whom I had a number of candid conversations over the years, wrote me the following for attribution:
It has been said several times that I didn’t find any hints supporting the accusation that the famous scene at the Netzarim junction was a hoax and this was why I didn’t include it in my film. This is wrong. Indeed even in 2001 I already came across a number of interesting hints indicating that the so called „killing of Mohammed Al Durah“ might be a Palestinian propaganda fabrication. However, back then when I did my film, I focussed on the question who could have killed Mohammed Al Durah. This already came as a surprise to me, because initially I was sure that there was not doubt that it was the clear case of a Palestinian child getting killed by israeli soldiers. I wanted to do a film about the tragedy of a child getting killed in the conflict and about the unusal situation for soldiers to be confronted with children. I wanted to know how the soldiers cope with the feeling of having killed an innocent child.
My findings, that it is most unlikely that he was killed by the Israeli soldiers for a number of reasons came as a surprise to me and already caused an outcry and I got life threats and needed police protections when I appeared in public. As I was aware of the emotional impact of that scene I stuck strictly to facts and findings and left out everything that seemed like speculation. Now, in retrospect with the knowledge of today, I know that it is very justified to question if he did get killed at all.
Now Derfner assumes that those who take the most “cautious” position are the “highly respected, disinterested” journalists, and those who go farther are zealots with an agenda. Here, Schapira notes the ferocious hostility she encountered just for suggesting the position Derfner adopts at the beginning of his article. Just because people aren’t committed to a cause doesn’t mean there isn’t pressure on them to scew their findings, and that, somehow, their conclusions are “disinterested.” Apparently Derfner makes no allowance for the kinds of pressures and intimidations that our MSM journalists endure — both death threats, and the more pervasive need to “line up with the pack.”
I am preparing an extensive fisking of Derfner which will be up soon.