The AP and the media are claiming they were unaware of Hamas operating out of the same building as theirs, but a report from The Atlantic from 2014 shows that the media might know more than they are willing to admit.
The report published on November 30th, 2014 is a first hand account from inside the building from AP reporter Matti Friedman.
“The Western press has become less an observer of this conflict than an actor in it, a role with consequences for the millions of people trying to comprehend current events, including policymakers who depend on journalistic accounts to understand a region where they consistently seek, and fail, to productively intervene,” Friedman wrote.
The writer claimed that not only did the AP know about Hamas being in the area, but worked closely with Hamas to present news in a way that was acceptable to the terror organization.
“When Hamas’s leaders surveyed their assets before this summer’s round of fighting, they knew that among those assets was the international press. The AP staff in Gaza City would witness a rocket launch right beside their office, endangering reporters and other civilians nearby—and the AP wouldn’t report it, not even in AP articles about Israeli claims that Hamas was launching rockets from residential areas. (This happened.),” Friedman wrote. “Hamas fighters would burst into the AP’s Gaza bureau and threaten the staff—and the AP wouldn’t report it. (This also happened.) Cameramen waiting outside Shifa Hospital in Gaza City would film the arrival of civilian casualties and then, at a signal from an official, turn off their cameras when wounded and dead fighters came in, helping Hamas maintain the illusion that only civilians were dying.”
the AP spokesman, confirmed that armed militants entered the AP’s Gaza office in the early days of the war to complain about a photo showing the location of a rocket launch.
Before targeting the building in the latest round of airstrikes and violence in Gaza, Israeli officials gave the media a warning to evacuate. Israeli intelligence knew the building was being used by Hamas, but the media, whose job is to conduct investigative journalism, claims to have had no idea that the they shared the building with the terror group.
“After providing advance warning to civilians & time to evacuate, IDF fighter jets struck a multi-story building containing Hamas military intelligence assets. The building contained civilian media offices, which Hamas hides behind and deliberately uses as human shields,” the Israeli Defense Force said in a statement.