Setups, Lies & Videotape
***Did an Italian journalist working in Israel and Palestinian TV producer collude with Hezbollah for a propaganda broadcast?
Israelis and Lebanese recently marked the 10th anniversary of the Second War in Lebanon. That was the conflict triggered by Hezbollah’s kidnapping of IDF soldiers Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser.
Among the various reporters working on documentaries was freelance Italian journalist, Michela Moni. Moni interviewed ex-foreign minister Tzipi Livni, ex-defense minister Amir Peretz and two former soldiers about their memories of the abduction and subsequent 2006 conflict.
After Moni conducted seemingly ordinary interviews, something strange happened. As broken by YNet, Moni’s work was aired, not by Italian television, but by al-Mayadeen, a Lebanese TV station aligned with Hezbollah.
Al-Mayadeen is known in the Arab world as part of the “axis of opposition” media, which includes Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV station. This Shiite media axis staunchly supports Bashar Assad and Iran, and also prides itself on countering Al-Jazeera’s Sunni-leaning agenda.
None of the Israelis would have agreed to be interviewed by Moni had they known they would be appearing in a Hezbollah mouthpiece’s “documentary.” Asked how his work wound up in al-Mayadeen’s hands, Moni gave contradictory explanations (more on that below).