University Of Alberta Student Newspaper Gives Fawning Coverage To Now-Dismantled Anti-Israel Encampment

On May 12, The Gateway, the “official student newspaper for the University of Alberta”, published an article that gave fawning coverage to the now-dismantled anti-Israel encampment entitled: “Palestine solidarity encampment begins on U of A Main Quad”.

In the article, authors Lily Polenchuk and Dylana Twittey wrote about how the group, the ‘People’s University For Palestine,’ set up an encampment on the main quad at the University of Alberta, prior to its dismantling by police on May 11 (though the article was published only afterwards).

“Among its demands, the People’s University For Palestine YEG wants the U of A and MacEwan to disclose their financial investments, and “declare via an immediate statement its condemnation of this genocide,” according to an Instagram post, posted the morning of May 9,” according to the article.

As is now typical of pro-Palestinian articles, The Gateway offered the encampment free publicity via its article and deviated from any journalistic ethics with the complete absence of a semblance of balanced reporting.

The Gateway’s journalists could have pointed out that there is no evidence of an Israeli genocide – quite the contrary. Calling it a genocide is usually based on Hamas’s fabricated casualty figures, which increase with an impossible regularity and do not differentiate between combatants and civilians.

On the contrary, John Spencer, chair of the Urban Warfare Studies Modern War Institute at West Point, has pointed out that Israel operates with incredible humanity, leafleting, calling and texting Palestinian civilians directing them out of harm’s way, and more.

The protestors ignored this and have demanded that the university “defend their right to peacefully protest”.

Unfortunately, this was not a peaceful protest. Nor was it “organized by independent students in solidarity with the people of Gaza and Palestine” as the Gateway would have readers believe.

Photos show signage calling to “Globalize the Intifada” at the University of Alberta’s recent encampment. Intifada means “uprising” in Arabic. There have been two Intifadas in Israel. Both were characterized by violent murder of Israelis, including bombing civilian locations including restaurants, bus stops, and more. Calls to “globalize” the Intifada are calls to attack Jews around the globe. Not what one expects at a “peaceful protest”.

Mr Flanagan, President of the University of Alberta, said “the protesters had been collecting wood pallets, which were deemed a risk by the fire inspector. After the protest camp was dismantled, hammers, axes, and screwdrivers were found, Mr. Flanagan said, which he described as “potential weapons.”

He also said that “he estimated only 25 percent of those present were University of Alberta students.” So it mostly wasn’t a student protest, either.

The authors could have provided some context. They could have told their readers that the Hamas-Israel war was started when Hamas terrorists invaded Israel and in a coordinated attack on Israel’s border cities they raped, beheaded, burnt, and murdered 1200 civilians, taking hundreds of hostages, 130 of whom remain in captivity.

However, rather than doing that, they reported on the protestors’ demands that “…the U of A disclose its institutional and financial investments; divest “from the Zionist regime…”

In so doing both the authors and the protestors sided with Hamas – the instigators of this conflict – by ignoring their atrocities and by neglecting to  hold them accountable for releasing the innocent hostages and ending the war.

In contrast to what The Gateway would have readers believe, the University of Alberta encampment called for violence, had potential weapons on site, and only had 25 percent student involvement. The Gateway has misrepresented both events in the Middle East and local events on campus, straining its journalistic credibility.

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