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September 27, 2004
Palestinian Free Speech Commitment

The Palestinians showed their commitment to free speech and the renouncement of terror today in Gaza, where an armed gang kidnapped an Israeli CNN producer, beat his employees, and stole their equipment just a few minutes ago:

Four armed Palestinians kidnapped an Israeli citizen on Monday evening in Gaza City. The Israeli, Riad Abu Ali, works as an assistant producer for the American CNN television news network. ...

According to initial reports, the armed men tracked Abu Ali's car as he departed CNN's production offices in Gaza City. When he reached the city's Rimal neighborhood, the armed men stopped the car and grabbed Abu Ali.

"We had no indication that this was going to happen," said CNN correspondent Ben Wedeman Monday evening in a live broadcast. "This is something I've never experienced... These men were not very communicative. They asked which was of us was Riad and that was it."

Two other members of the CNN news team were beaten and their equipment was stolen.

Hopefully, Abu Ali -- whom I presume is an Israeli Arab -- will be released soon and relatively unharmed, although I doubt that's likely. Perhaps this incident will convince those within CNN and other news organizations that terrorists are not noble "freedom fighters" but gangsters who intend on turning the world into a turf war. Having a camera and a business card provides no more protection than, say, being a child buying a slice of pizza at a Jerusalem restauarant.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at September 27, 2004 12:08 PM

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