Shahira Amin lied about abusive Shalit interviewYou will all recall that after that horrible interview with Gilad Shalit in Egypt, interviewer Shahira Amin wrote an open letter to the Israeli public in which she claimed the following.
I met him after he had been released and he had had a medical checkup by the Red Cross and he had already communicated with his family to let them know of his release and that he would be home shortly.I'm sure you'll all be shocked to hear that Amin is lying (Hat Tip: Backspin).
Only then did I enter the room. [Emphasis added by CiJ]
In her email to me, Amin defends her decision to conduct the interview with Shalit – in part because she says the interview was conducted “AFTER [her caps] he had been released by Hamas and had a medical checkup by the Red Cross.”Given the circumstances and what he had been through, I would venture to guess that Shalit thought that Hamas could still call off the deal if he didn't do the interview.
But here’s the problem: Red Cross spokesman Hicham Hassan wrote me today that “ICRC representatives met Mr. Shalit briefly after his transfer to the Egyptian authorities. However, he was not met by an IRC doctor as this has [sic] not been solicited.”
This is no small detail: The issue of Shalit’s medical condition (physical and mental) lies at the very heart of why the interview should never have taken place. So does the fact that a masked Hamas soldier – from the group’s armed wing – stood with a camera in that interview room. Just how “released” could Shalit have felt at that moment – in an Israel-unfriendly country such as Egypt – to freely consent to an interview? Considering that masked Hamas men were the only people he could see for five years, did he feel he was in any position to say no?
“This was an illusion of choice,” says Dr. Nancy Zarse of the Chicago School of Professional Psychology, an expert in hostage negotiations for the FBI, federal prisons, and the Chicago Police. “I watched the video of the interview. There was evidence of increased autonomic [nervous system] arousal, a lot of heavy breathing, and there were times that I thought he looked scared. This wasn’t really that you have the option to say no. I haven’t met or spoken with him, but I would understand that an individual like this still feels captive – that an interview like this would become part and parcel of the captivity.”
Israel ought to - but probably won't out of fear of damaging whatever relations are left with Egypt - take this interview to the UN Security Council. Because Ms. Amin works for Egyptian state television, the interview was a violation of the Geneva Convention provisions that protect prisoners of war and civilian internees from "insults and public curiosity."
Read the whole thing - according to Forbes' counter, far too few people have clicked on the link.
One other point: The Red cross deserves opprobrium and condemnation here. After more than five years in which they did nothing to bring about Shalit's release - they didn't even push Hamas to let them see him - he was not met by an ICRC doctor because 'this was not solicited.' From whom were they waiting for a request? In the event, Shalit fainted on the helicopter from the Kerem Shalom crossing point in the south to the Tel Nof airbase in the center of the country. Had the Red Cross taken the initiative to examine him, perhaps they would have found that he was dehydrated or something similar and ensured that he had something to drink or whatever else he needed to prevent fainting.