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Update On Fox News Reporters Taken In Gaza

Earlier Jim Addison wrote that two Fox News journalists, reporter Steve Centanni and a New Zealand cameraman, Olaf Wiig, were kidnapped in Gaza and were being held against their will. (Mary Katharine Ham has an extensive post on the story.) I then read a Fox VP email, which was linked at Drudge, which instructed those at Fox to do no interviews, nor to even mention the kidnapping on air. This made me curious about why they would issue a news blackout on the story. I wondered if it was because negotiations were taking place or if they simply did not want to give terrorists the publicity they sought, or if there was some other reason. This AP update helps make sense of the email. It appears that negotiations are, in fact, underway.

Major militant groups in Gaza denied any connection to the incident; there was no immediate word of any demands made.

However, Wiig's wife Anita McNaught said Fox representatives had told her negotiations for their release were already under way.

"There will be people working through the Palestinian Authority, through the authorities in Gaza ... but Fox News are vastly experienced on the ground there, so they have all the contacts they need," said McNaught, who is a BBC World television presenter.

McNaught, who is currently in Syria, told New Zealand's National Radio she intends to come to the area soon to help secure the release of the two men.
...
Several foreigners have been kidnapped in Gaza in recent months with their abductors demanding jobs from the Palestinian Authority or the release of people being held in Palestinian jails. All those kidnapped have been released within hours without harm.

I was at first hesitant to even write about this negotiation story, wondering if calling more attention to it might in some way negatively affect the outcome, in light of the Fox email. Since this story has been reported on CNN and by the Associated Press, and many blogs now, I decided to post.

We hear about journalists being kidnapped from time to time in these war zones, but often those journalists' faces are unknown to us. When the reporter is someone well known, as Centanni surely is to regular Fox News watchers, it just seems more personal -- more "real." As Fox News Senior VP John Moody said, "pray for their release."



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Comments (10)

Would Israel do something l... (Below threshold)
RJ:

Would Israel do something like this? No. But Muslim terrorists do...THAT is the difference...

I'm curious about that Fox ... (Below threshold)
LCVRWC:

I'm curious about that Fox "gag order" (for want of a better term. The local DC Fox affiliate, channel 5, discussed the abductions and apparent negotiations both last night and this AM.

Additional info: Steve Centanni used to work at the DC Fox affiliate.

Are they sure the kidnapper... (Below threshold)
hermie:

Are they sure the kidnappers weren't working for CNN, or were Reuters' stringers?

It is chilling to be readin... (Below threshold)
Drew:

It is chilling to be reading about Jill Carrol's captivity over at CSM at the same time this is happening.
Jill made it through using courage and wits..I know these two possess the same traits.
My thoughts and prayers are with them..
Situations like these should be spared the petty sarcasm...there are plenty of other topics to demonstrate your humor.

I think Fox News is trying ... (Below threshold)

I think Fox News is trying their best NOT to become part of the story in Israel. They are putting the best interests of their employee's ahead of their ratings. What other network would do that?

I have no problem with Fox ... (Below threshold)
langtry:

I have no problem with Fox "negotiating" for the release of their kidnapped reporter and camaraman. That is, as long as their negotiations include taking the same approach to truth and regard for human life as do Cantanni's & Wiig's captors.

Pay the ransom, get their men, and then tell the Israeli Air Force exactly where to send a few smart bombs. Personally, I'd prefer a carpet bombing campaign as I think Gaza is a cancer that, like Hezbollah, needs to be excised.

Once Centanni & Wiig are safe, all news organizations should then pull their people out of Gaza, as Gaza's inhabitants (it's really hard to call them human/people anymore) continue to tell us their story (as reported by their people they kidbap) is one that no longer deserves to be told.

Lorie, last night on O'Reil... (Below threshold)

Lorie, last night on O'Reilly, the Israeli Ambassador to the UN offered his prayers for Steve Centanni and Olaf Wiig. Bill thanked him and said that Fox wasn't talking about it at this time.

A media blackout re the kid... (Below threshold)
Sue:

A media blackout re the kidnapping..what a wonderful idea. Just think where these Islamofascists would be if nobody covered their s...t>

LCVRWC,Fox is not ... (Below threshold)
Nahanni:

LCVRWC,

Fox is not going to play into the hands of the Islamofascists by giving them free publicity. And if I were a betting person I would bet that Fox is hiring some mercenaries to get their guys out and kill the perps.

If these kidnappers were smart they would have grabbed someone like Anderson Cooper so they would get the wall to wall coverage out of CNN. But if they did kidnap someone like Cooper we know that CNN would bend over backwards to kiss the kidnappers ass and would use an awful lot of everyones cable fees in ransom money.

Question:Will Fox ... (Below threshold)
epador:

Question:

Will Fox (or any other news organization) black out reports on all future kidnappings?

[pin drops]




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