November 20, 2023 | Foreign Podicy

How Hamas Co-opts the Media

November 20, 2023 Foreign Podicy

How Hamas Co-opts the Media



Although six weeks have passed since Iran-backed Hamas terrorists invaded Israel and butchered more than 1,200 innocent civilians while taking hostage another 240, this is just the beginning of Israel’s multi-front defensive war.

One key battlefield: the information space.

Historically, the odds of winning in this arena have not been in Israel’s favor. They don’t seem to be now, either.

To understand why, host Cliff May and Israeli journalist and author Matti Friedman dissect both past and present media coverage of Gaza.

They explain how almost all the foreign press’ current work inside Gaza is being conducted by local “fixers” who either support or dare not cross Hamas. In either case, Hamas controls the narrative.

Despite an ethical imperative, most news organizations are not transparent about these restrictions that ultimately shape their coverage. And while this helps explain the “almost eagerness” of the press to accept without question and package as news Hamas talking points, Matti tells Cliff that a “deeper psychology” is also in play.

Matti Friedman

From 2006 to 2011, Matti was a correspondent and editor in the Jerusalem bureau of the Associated Press. Then, in 2014, he covered a subject considered taboo within the “journalistic community.” In Tablet and The Atlantic, he exposed and explored “a serious malfunction” in the reporting by AP and other major media outlets operating in Israel, the West Bank and, in particular, Gaza. Matti went on to win awards, write three excellent non-fiction books, and continue contributing commentary to elite publications.


Iran Iran Global Threat Network Iran-backed Terrorism Israel Israel at War Palestinian Politics