Are Rep. Tlaib, the New York Times, and Other Media Guilty of Disinformation on the Hospital “Strike”?

The NY Times Should Answer for Some of These Photo Choices
The New York Times and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D., Mich.) have long denounced disinformation on social media and called for censorship of those spreading false information. They and various other media outlets now find themselves accused of immediately spreading false images and accounts of the recent explosion at the hospital in Gaza. The NYT picture above is not even the hospital and the Biden Administration has concluded it was not only a Palestinian missile in the incident but it struck the parking lot rather than the hospital itself.While there is still debate over the origin of the missile that struck the hospital, United States intelligence and the Biden Administration have concluded that it was not an Israeli missile but a Palestinian missile. I am open to evidence on either side and investigations continue., However, it was not (and has not been) established that this was an Israeli missile.

Moreover, the missile did not destroy the hospital but appears to have landed in the parking lot. Finally, the actual death toll remains in dispute.

While the caption on the photo above acknowledged that it is not the picture of the hospital, it created a powerful image with the headline. The more important question is why the New York Times would simply repeat the accusation from Hamas on the origin of the missile when there are thousands of missiles going back and forth between Israel and Gaza.

The New York Times not only immediately declared Israel as the source but said that hundreds were killed. The BBC completed an investigation with the assistance of experts, who said that the evidence was not consistent with an Israeli missile strike and further suggested that the death toll was lower than widely reported.


Likewise, Foreign Policy magazine is still showing a misleading picture of a huge crater that turns out to be from an entirely different location. Actual drone footage does not show the type of large crater that would have been left by an Israeli missile in the parking lot.  The Wall Street Journal showed this crater in the parking lot:While the New York Times can claim that it later covered the countervailing findings of Israeli and American intelligence, that is not the case with Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D., Mich.). Last night, after the Biden Administration released its own findings that the missile came from Palestine, Tlaib led a mass protest while denouncing Israel for the strike:
“People think it’s okay to bomb a hospital where children, you know, what’s so hard sometimes is watching those videos and and the people telling the kids, ‘Don’t cry.’ And like, let them cry!”And they’re shaking [INAUDIBLE] they keep telling them not to cry in Arabic. And they can cry, I can cry, we all can cry. If we’re not crying, something is wrong! And so I’m telling you right now, President Biden, not all of America’s with you on this one. And you need to wake up and understand that! We are literally watching people commit your genocide and killing a vast majority just like this. And we still stand by and say nothing. We will remember this. But all of you, you need to know, I swear to God [INAUDIBLE] You are on the right side of history! You are! You’re doing everything possible to save lives! What is wrong with that? Stop it!”

Tlaib wrote on social media that “Israel just bombed the Baptist Hospital killing 500 Palestinians (doctors, children, patients) just like that” on X.

She later refused to apologize for repeating the claim viewed as false by the Biden Administration and others.What is striking about Tlaib’s protest speech is that she is denouncing the loss of First Amendment rights in this controversy in making these claims.I have repeatedly said that I oppose censorship of those who are making these claims. That will come as no surprise to regulars on this blog. However, Tlaib has not been a voice for free speech. While objecting to the censorship of Palestinians, Tlaib has supported the push of Democrats to get greater levels of “content moderation” on social media. Tlaib cut off Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg when he tried to defend policies to minimize censorship as protecting “hate speech.”Likewise, the New York Times has been unrelenting in attacks on Elon Musk and Twitter for restoring free speech protections on X and supporting broader censorship of disinformation, misinformation, and malinformation.

Of course, NY Times, Tlaib, and others can count on the free speech community will continue to support their own ability to speak even when they are accused of spreading disinformation.

This controversy shows, again, how selective the media has been in its calls for bans and censorship. That includes various journalistic and scientific figures banned for expressing skepticism over pandemic claims from the origins of the virus to the efficacy of certain treatments. For example, when many people raised the possibility that the virus may have been released from the nearby Chinese virology lab (rather than the “wet market” theory), they were denounced as virtually a lunatic fringe. Even objections to the bias of authors of a report dismissing the lab theory were ridiculed. The New York Times reporter covering the area called it “racist” and implausible.  Now, even W.H.O. admits that the lab theory is possible and Biden officials are admitting that it is indeed plausible.

Fortunately for the reporters of the New York Times and Democratic members like Tlaib, free speech values should protect their right to continue to post these views despite their truth or veracity. One can only hope that they might want to consider showing others the same consideration.

263 thoughts on “Are Rep. Tlaib, the New York Times, and Other Media Guilty of Disinformation on the Hospital “Strike”?”

  1. Tlaib is taking what the Democrats did against Donald Trump and is using this new book of tricks to go after Jews. The Democrats concocted a lie that they used as a blood libel against Trump, that he somehow called the Neo Nazis at Charlottesville “very fine people” when in fact he did not. Tlaib is doing the same thing with this hospital rocket strike to smear Jews and Israel.

  2. Prof.. Turley, your final words ‘One can only hope that they might want to consider showing others the same consideration.’ is the crux of the matter… Besides being TOO ARROGANT and FULL OF THEMSELVES.. those who behave like these Woke Folks must be too CLUELESS, CLASSLESS & WEAK to apologize when they support established LIES… whilst they insist that everyone else tow Their Line… ..hard to believe we have so many unevolved persons who support this nonsense.. rather reminiscent of the horrible Joseph McCarthyism slander & libel years…..

  3. According to highly placed sources in the Biden administration, the U.S. State Department has warned Hamas to immediately cease misgendering the hostages captured in its recent terror attacks.

    The sources say that the Administration views the misgendering as violations of internal law and far outside civilized norms. Hamas’ failure to comply with the Administration’s demands will be met with the harshest possible consequences.

  4. Free speech should be absolute. I fail to understand those that believe free speech is only speech that they personally agree with.

  5. Turley,

    I’m a little amazed at your ‘Of course they are counting on the Free speech… ‘ statement.

    Absolutely, they have the right to say anything that they want, while they must also recognize that not all speech is protected and that being free from prosecution over their speech, there can and will be blow back.

    Tlaib may not go to jail for her posts… but that doesn’t mean she couldn’t be expelled from Congress.


  6. “At least 100 Israelis have been arrested for social media posts supporting Palestinians in Gaza and 70 remain in detention, according to a legal advocacy group in the country.”

    Will JT discuss this anti-free-speech act?

    Or how about this illegal act:
    “Israeli police chief says there’s a ‘zero tolerance’ police for anti-war protests, threatening to send them to Gaza in buses.”

    “The Israeli government has granted approval for emergency regulations, enabling it to temporarily suspend the operations of foreign news channels, including Al Jazeera, due to its reporting of the ongoing war against Gaza.”

    These are not the acts of a healthy democracy.

    1. Israel and Europe don’t have the same free speech standards. Stop pretending they do. If you won’t stand up for ours, how can you expect anyone to care about others?

      Oh yes, and control of the media and information in a war is something healthy democracies do all the time.

  7. In November 1947, the UN General Assembly passed a resolution partitioning Palestine into two states, one Jewish and one Arab, with Jerusalem under a UN administration. The Arab world rejected the plan, arguing that it was unfair and violated the UN Charter. Jewish militias launched attacks against Palestinian villages, forcing thousands to flee. The situation escalated into a full-blown war in 1948, with the end of the British Mandate and the departure of British forces, the declaration of independence of the State of Israel and the entry of neighbouring Arab armies. The newly established Israeli forces launched a major offensive. The result of the war was the permanent displacement of more than half of the Palestinian population.

  8. The neighborhood bully he just lives to survive
    He’s criticized and condemned for being alive
    He’s not supposed to fight back, he’s supposed to have thick skin
    He’s supposed to lay down and die when his door is kicked in
    He’s the neighborhood bully.
    The neighborhood bully been driven out of every land
    He’s wandered the earth an exiled man
    Seen his family scattered, his people hounded and torn
    He’s always on trial for just being born
    He’s the neighborhood bully.


  9. Suppose Israel no longer exists. Jews have created an encampment in the Andes (JIA). Then what?

    That’s easy.

    Chanting “death to JIA” and “from the river to the sea,” Iran’s mullahs send terrorists to wipe out the encampment.

    When you are driven by a genocidal ideology, you go where the targets are.

    The U.N. then wrings its hands over JIA’s asymmetric response. “How dare they use rocks, when the attackers only used pebbles.”

    Genocidal sympathizers in the U.S. demand “justice” for the oppressed Andeans.

    And some Leftist politician declares: “Don’t worry JIA. We’ve got your back. No, this time, seriously.”

    When you apologize for that genocidal ideology, you betray its victims.

    1. Sam, I think you’re onto something there. It’s the ancient human disease. The world cannot abide that the Jews survived 1,900 years without a homeland, and remained an intact people group – something no other nation has done. That Jews still exist as a distinct nationality drives people nuts without their even knowing why. Hating Jews seems to be deeply woven into human nature. Why else would there be Gays for Palestine (where gays would get killed, versus in Israel where gay pride parades are legal and well attended), or why else aren’t women’s rights groups protesting that Hamas brutally raped and tortured Israeli women?

      1. “I think you’re onto something there.”

        Thanks. But it’s actually history that’s “onto something here.”

        Antisemitism is inherent in Islam. Starting with Medina in the 7th century, Muslims have been persecuting Jews — giving them a “choice:” Convert, flee (if you can), be murdered.

        The Hamas/Iranian butchers of innocent Israelis repeated that history of barbarism. Unless the root cause is eradicated, that history will repeat itself — again, and again, . . .

        1. Sam, antisemitism is an inherent part of Islam, which is why 100% of Muslim majority nations and theocracies are antisemitic. Moderate Muslims simply ignore this aspect of the Koran, and all the sword verses, which is problematic, as it is supposed to be the literal word of Allah.

  10. The MSM’s favorite phrase nowadays is “without evidence” which they say with regard to virtually anything a Republican says. So when they reported that Hamas said the missile came from Israel, why didn’t they say, “without evidence”? The question answers itself: in the NY Times‘s view, Hamas are the good guys and Republicans are the bad guys. That’s how decrepit and senile the old Gray Lady has become.

  11. Guilty is right.

    Many of us saw the shifting headlines in the NYT as it was forced to walk back its ideologically driven, inflammatory reporting. What should we do? Hamas might say that nothing needs to be done. That actors like the NYT and Tlaib should be encouraged. That their disinformation and falsehoods are on the right side of history.

    The violence and hatred provoked by the NYT and Tlaib is nigh impossible to walk back. A fire, once set, can become a raging inferno that is impossible to extinguish. Setting the initial narrative is a powerful weapon. But maybe that is the point.

    Shouldn’t we expect a higher standard of care from the paper of record? That it pause to make sure of the facts before aiming a blowtorch at the tinderbox? Before aiding and abetting a group dedicated to the destruction of the Israeli people?

    Maybe Tlaib should be held to a lower standard of conduct because well, you know. But that’s a question for another day.

    The NYT, Tlaib, and their ideological counterparts in government and the elite universities, have been steadfast in their support of content moderation and the enforcement of hate speech laws.

    The laws are on the books, duly passed by the legislature and “our” democracy. They are there for a reason. One can even debate their wisdom. But it is not for prosecutors to ignore them based on the political proclivities of the actors. That is the essence of corrupt, selective enforcement.

    If we don’t enforce our anti-hate laws and content moderation policies now, when? If not applied to the NYT and Tlaib, against whom?

    Guilty is right.

  12. Ukrainian Hospitals Frequently Struck

    The World Health Organization (WHO) has recorded more than 1,100 attacks on its healthcare system since the invasion began on 24 February 2022, and more than one in 10 Ukrainian hospitals have been directly damaged by the war.In some areas occupied by Russia, people have had little or no access to medicine since late …Aug 15, 2023

    One googles, “Russian misile hits hospital” and discovers multiple stories with different dates reporting hospital strikes in a number of Ukrainian cities. Apparently striking hospitals is a form of routine warfare for Putin’s military.

    Yet strangely enough, MAGA Republicans have no problem with such strikes. Jim Jordan, the twice-failed nominee for House Speaker wants to cut-off Ukraine on orders from Donald Trump.

    Trump fears that Putin might lose the war to Biden and Zelensky. Therefore the so-called ‘Russia hoax’ was really no hoax. Trump really ‘is’ a stooge for Putin and has been all along.

    1. I think you posted this elsewhere. It is completely nonsensical. Nobody is in favor of hospitals getting struck. The discussion has been about falsely blaming Israel for that, not whether explosions at hospitals are good or bad (of course they are bad). And if you have $60 billion that you wouldn’t mind giving to Ukraine, go ahead, it wouldn’t bother anyone if you gave it. But the US is $34 trillion in debt, and the dispute between Russia and Ukraine is not something that affects our national interests. Besides, Ukraine is just as corrupt as Russia, and Ukraine is historically part of Russia – in fact Kiev was the ancient capital of Russia. Let them sort it out for themselves. Why do you want to give away even more of my money to one side of that controversy, further bankrupt America, and potentially start World War III, with nuclear armageddon, to boot?

  13. 4 some ppl don’t get it. I’m glad law firms have ceased hiring these kind of pple.- barbaric butcher supporters. The bar can’t stop the proffesion…per se but can half them in pract ice. Let’s rest. On TN 10 20 bsu. Graphite. Flamingo. .blueberry. calendar shared? For m.? “Fb pik rd. Rest. Jrp dry ndl.” Daryl? M. Helo …. 1340. Hury? 1405. M post hld for. Goat.???

  14. Democrat Rashida Tlaib, where were your tears when Hamas raped every Jewish woman they could catch? When they beheaded babies, and cut fetuses out of pregnant Jewish women, while they were still alive? Where was your shaking rhetoric when Hamas hunted down an unarmed Thai worker, mutilated him, and while he struggled feebly, beheaded him with several whacks of a blunt shovel, shouting about how great their god was? Hamas engaged in actual war on women, gang raping them in the street, and often executing them after they were done.

    Where is your outrage that Hamas ordered Palestinian civilians, including children, to remain in military strike zones after Israel warned them to leave? Why are you not incensed that Hamas blocked escape routes for Palestinian families, forcing them to remain in harm’s way?

    Your anguish is selective, irrational, and does not hold the perpetrators accountable.

    You enable terrorists by creating PR videos for them. You support terrorists that target civilians and children, and condemn the country that goes to the most effort in our planet’s history to avoid civilian casualties.

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