Were this the act of pro-govt sniper, what would sooth western media's outcry?

Were this the act of pro-govt sniper, what would sooth western media's outcry?



By Ismaeel Alshareef

"This looks like one of those iconic images of children under attack, such as of Mohammed al-Durrah and the Warsaw Ghetto boy," says Esam Saleh, a Yemeni human rights activist as he gazes into the photo of slain Saber al-Samadi in his laptop.

Al-Samadi, an 11-year-old-boy, was killed and his 9-yr old brother Mohammed was injured when a Houthi sniper on a hilltop shot them as they tried to climb a Manila tamarind tree to play and pick fruits near their house in the besieged city of Taiz on April7.

"It qualifies," quips Esam. "What prevents it from going viral is that the sniper is Houthi," he goes on.

"Were the kid killed by a pro-government sniper, what would sooth Reuters, the New York Times, the Foreign Policy, the Middle East Monitor, the Independent and the Antiwar news websites?!" he wonders.

Esam cites the outcries they make over unverified stories - of "child casualties by airstrikes"-  authored by the Houthi Shia religious militants and attributed to the Arab Coalition.

"The CNN, Reuters, the BBC, and many more outlets took the Houthi word for it and made international headlines of them," he says.

Some of them may be true stories like that of Butheina a Sanaa girl who sustained eye injuries in a Coalition strike. But many other stories are made up.

"An example is the claim of 30 'civilian' casualties near the crash site of a Saudi warplane in Aljawf last March." The Houthi narrative and (false) picture "surprisingly drew an outcry from the UN's Humanitarian Coordinator," he recalls.

"Now this picture of Al-Samadi is authenticated with picture, a disturbing one. And the shooting incident on April 7 comes in a series of deadly shootings by Houthi snipers in the city," says Esam. One sniping incident took place after it "and countless deadly sniper shootings had preceded it – since March 2015. "

As to why the consecutive child murders don’t make it to the western media, Esam simply puts it: "Because the snipers are Houthis, not government soldiers."   



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