Karsenty came to public attention when he was sued for libel by France 2 after accusing the network of broadcasting staged footage of Mohammed al-Dura’s shooting death during a gun fight in Gaza in 2000. France 2 originally won the case, but the judgment was overturned by a Paris court in May 2008.
One would assume that would be sufficient victory needed to lay it all to rest. But a decade after al-Dura, an intrepid Karsenty insists the fight to clear Israel’s name is far from over.
Visiting Israel in February on yet another tireless round of campaigning, he was riding the high of a favorable Haaretz op-ed piece penned in January by military analyst Reuven Pedatzur. Pedatzur praised Karsenty’s relentless al-Dura investigations and accused Israel’s government of neglect. “Mohammed al-Dura — Israel’s greatest PR failure,” the title railed.
Karsenty agrees with the sentiment and his confidence is bolstered by support also flowing forth from Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline Glick.
Israel’s foreign ministry has taken a “‘let’s forget about this entire affair — we don’t care’ attitude instead of fighting for the truth,” Karsenty states as we sit together in the lobby of Tel Aviv’s David Intercontinental Hotel. “But the affair and its implications are far from over.”
Because as he continues traveling the world and airing al-Dura footage clips that he says prove the shooting was staged, the analyst arrived in Israel to be met with what he describes as complacent and patronizing apathy.
“RAI is running an anti-Israel documentary in the coming weeks that will further disseminate the Israeli blood libel. The BBC ran a documentary, Generation Jihad, earlier this month that included a suggestion al Dura was faked,” Karsenty explains.
“A decent human being doesn’t want to live a fraudulent life of fraudulent claims. Two years after winning my trial, the very government that should be supporting me is undermining my efforts.”
Karsenty says Israel’s officials have a responsibility to clear the country’s good name. But in fact, his understanding is that foreign ministry front people have been given directives to not support him.