Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall recently signed a letter with more than a dozen other state attorneys general that put certain media outlets "on notice" about potentially providing material support to terrorist groups when it comes to who they contract with to report on the October 7 Hamas attacks on Israel.
The letter was addressed to the New York Times, Associated Press, CNN and Reuters.
"Reporting credibly alleges that some of the individuals that your outlets hire have deep and troubling ties to Hamas—and may have participated in the October 7 attack," the letter stated. "In the wake of those alarming reports, some of you have cut ties with these so-called journalists whose connections to terror groups have become too obvious to hide. Good. But one factor in determining whether an organization has provided material support for terrorism is that it be 'knowing.'"
Marshall appeared on Fox Business' "The Evening Edit" to further explain the intent of the letter.
"I think what we saw as a result of the coverage of the events of October 7th was that there was immediacy to the reporting of Hamas activities and we saw it occurring through those that had previously freelanced or worked with several media outlets, and it raises a significant concern not only from a criminal side, when you have statutes on the books, both federal and state level, about material support for terrorist organizations, but also without truly receiving the news and accurate reporting of what's taking place in the Middle East, or in fact, receiving propaganda from terrorist organizations."
Marshall said he supported the right to free speech and freedom of the press but there was "a legitimate question about those who had existing financial relationships with media organizations."
"They clearly were embedded with Hamas when they began their invasion into Israel on October 7th, and ultimately taking a lie to raping Israeli citizens that day," he said. "What did they know? What was their connection? And did they in fact know the fact that these individuals that worked with them previously had relationships with these terrorist organizations?"
Marshall gave the example of a photo of a journalist "kissing the mastermind" of the attack on Israel, Yahya Sinwar.
"[W]hen we think about, for example, all of the information initially about the activities of the Israeli military forces involving a hospital and whether or not there was a loss of life and what truly happened, you have to question where that information is coming and how it is being vetted to being provided to the American people," Marshall said. "Clearly, Joe Biden has acknowledged that Hamas is a terrorist organization, but to the extent that there are media outlets relying upon individuals that are connected to Hamas, how can we trust that information being given to the American people?"
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