CNN Tries to Equivocate Hamas Slaughter, Blames Israel for No Gaza Shelters

October 13th, 2023 10:02 AM

On Thursday, CNN had a number of horribly pro-Hamas moments from both correspondents and guests, including an insane insinuation that Israel was to blame for Gazans not having bomb shelters and attempts to equivocate the work of a terrorist organization in Hamas with Israeli air strikes.

The AM edition of News Central had three. Near the end of its second hour, so-called “Palestinian Journalist” Laila El-Haddad argued Israel is already engaged in an “unfathomable” “war crime” against Palestinians and want to carry out an “ethnic cleansing” that “wipe[s]” Palestinians “out.”

Then, in the third hour, the co-hosts and Connect the World host Becky Anderson were deeply moved and near breakdowns over the graphic images of dead babies posted by the X account of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. After multiple advance warnings, they showed one of them.

Co-host Sara Sidner signed these were “horrifying photos of babies murdered and burned by Hamas monsters, as [Netanyahu] has put it” while Anderson was incredibly emotional: “Well, I'm a mom. Not that — I guess, this is not my story, but as a mom, it's not easy, but nobody will find this easy. You don't have to be a mom to respond or to understand how horrific these images are.”

Co-host John Berman made an incredibly important that “we so often talk about numbers...but sometimes the most important number is one” and even more so for families “when it is your baby, your child, your brother, your sister, your mother, your father.”

Having broken down in tears multiple times the day before, co-host Kate Bolduan predicted the images tweeted would sadly be “enduring” reminders of the attacks.

Then, out of nowhere, Sidner felt the need to equivocate the casualties in Gaza with the mass slaughter: “But there are also children in images coming out of Gaza that are, for many people, just as horrific and there are children there too and they — none of these children should be put in this position, none of them.”

Sidner did this again near the end of the show by comparing the Jewish babies shot and burned to death with the injured in Gaza in order to push back against “noise and vitriol around this war” (click “expand”):

There is so much noise and vitriol around this war and the intractable Palestinian-Israeli conflict. But we're hoping beyond hope that we can all recognize the searing trauma and destruction of life occurring to the most innocent among us. The children suffer the consequences of the actions of adults. These are graphic and disturbing pictures. I'm sorry that we're showing them to you, but it is the aftermath here of a terror attack by Hama and Israel, the entire country is grief-stricken. Today, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu released horrifying photos of babies murdered and burned by Hamas. We are just showing you one of the three photos that showed two babies whose bodies had been burned beyond recognition. And that third photo that we have been showing you of an infant's body that was lying dead, bloodstained. In Jerusalem, there was a family mourning a 23-year-old soldier killed in a battle with Hamas. You can see the sorrow on their faces as they bury him. 

In Gaza, a humanitarian crisis is growing by the hour. Hundreds of thousands displaced, more than a thousand killed, and children among them. There is an image shared from the Gaza Health Ministry. That is in a hospital. You see a child lying there with burns on his legs. Children are injured following Israeli airstrikes on a refugee camp there in Gaza. Even those who are trying to save others are themselves dying. We want to show you the members of the Palestinian family that are grieving a child. You're seeing the devastation before your eyes.

It got even dumber in the PM edition of News Central. In the 2:00 p.m. Eastern hour, Pro-Palestinian correspondent Ben Wedeman insinuated that Israel’s to blame for Gazans not being able to hide in bomb shelters during air strikes like Israelis can.

AC360 host Anderson Cooper noted Hamas — which governs the strip — certainly could as they use their supplies to “buil[d] network of tunnels for Hamas fighters, for hiding weapons and moving weapons.” Instead of blaming Hamas, Wedeman brushed it off as “obvious...that this is not a top priority for” them and blamed Jews:

There's not enough concrete. There's not enough cement. And I suspect if the Israelis saw through their surveillance system that bomb shelters were being built for civilians, they might suspect they might be for another purpose, despite the fact they actually might be meant as bomb shelters for civilians.

An hour later, Wedeman included a soundbite from inside Gaza via none other than Chinese state-run TV. Talk about reliable.

In the same liveshot, Wedeman produced this rather pathetic, meandering answer about why, despite being an Arab nation and sharing a border with them, Egypt doesn’t want to take in Gazans (click “expand”):

[T]he Egyptians have said that time and time again that their top priority is the national security of Egypt. But, of course, keep in mind the Sinai Peninsula, which, of course, is — very thinly populated. And the Egyptian government controls very tightly who gets out of Gaza and who gets across the Sinai Peninsula. Certainly, they're in a bit of a political bind. On the one hand, they don't want Palestinians to flood into the Sinai, as we saw, for instance, in January 2008, when Hamas blew up a large section of the wall that separated Gaza from Egypt. And we saw — I saw hundreds of thousands of Gazans flowing out of the Gaza Strip because they just wanted to get out of what has often been described as an open-air prison, but on the other hand, that Egyptian hesitation has to be balanced against the fact that, increasingly, many people in the Arab and Muslim world are saying, for God's sake, help these people in some way. And certainly, the best way to help many of the civilians in Gaza is to get them out of Gaza

The Lead’s Jake Tapper showed more backbone when he called out a slew of Arab nations:

To see the relevant CNN News Central transcripts from October 12, click here.