The Reuters news agency has altered images of activists wielding weapons and bloodied hands from photographs taken on board a ship headed for Gaza to improve depiction of Muslim attackers.
The ship was one of six vessels that made up the "Freedom Flotilla", a convoy that set out from Turkey in an attempt to break Israel's blockade on the Gaza Strip. Five of the boats in the convoy were boarded by IDF troops without incident.
As WND reported, activists on a sixth ship had planned to lynch the Israeli commandos who stormed the ship. During the boarding of the sixth ship, the Marmara, pro-Palestinian activists on-board attacked Israel Defense Forces Naval personnel with live fire and light weaponry including knives and clubs, an IDF spokesperson said.
The following May 31, 2010, a photo of a bloody Israeli commando being taken hostage aboard the Marmara appeared on IHH. A knife can be seen on the right side as well as the bloody hand of another wounded person.
But it appears that Reuters has cropped the photo to show it without the knife and the bloody hand.
This appears to be not the only knife cropping by the news agency. The following photo of an Israeli commando was released by Turkish newspaper Hurriyet. One of the "peace activists" can be seen holding a knife.
But Reuters ran the following photo June 6, cropping the knife out of the picture.
Reuters rejected accusations of biased coverage, adding that it had reverted to the use of "the original set" of images, once the organization realized that the photographs it had published had been cropped.
Reuters' response: "The images in question were made available in Istanbul, and following normal editorial practice were prepared for dissemination, which included cropping at the edges," Reuters said in a statement. "When we realized that a dagger was inadvertently cropped from the images, Reuters immediately moves the original set as well."
This isn’t the first time Reuters had been caught altering photos to make them less sympathetic to Israel. They did so, yet again, during the 2006 Lebanon war.
Reuters admitted in August 2006 that one of its pictures of the destruction caused by Israel's bombing of Beirut, had been altered with a computer graphics program. The agency said that it has suspended the Lebanese photographer responsible, Adnan Hajj, until further notice, and is investigating the incident.
The altered version shows thick black smoke rising over buildings in Beirut following an Israel Defense Forces bombing.
But it’s not only the plumes of smoke that were "enhanced". There are also cloned buildings.
To this day, it is unclear which of the following photos is the real original.
But wait, there's more:
A photo of "An Israeli F-16 warplane fires missiles during an air strike on Nabatiyeh in southern Lebanon" (as captioned by Reuters), only that the missiles are not missiles at all but rather defensive flares, and the photo had been doctored to show three flares, when in fact there had only been one.
Images showing the aftermath of the July 30 2006 air raid on Qana, Lebanon showing a green-helmeted "rescue worker" who seems to parade around with the corpse of a child for an extended period of time.
A mistake? Interestingly enough, every time Reuters says it "makes a mistake", it does so to Israel’s detriment. Perhaps this is more like a deliberate pattern?