U.S. journalist says he made up Chuck Hagel’s ‘Friends of Hamas’ rumor


Reports that the secretary of defense candidate gave a talk to a Hamas-affiliated organization created a stir in Washington. Journalist claims that he inadvertently started the rumor on Capitol Hill.

ed note–if this much trouble can be made over a small, unsophisticated ‘rumor’, how much trouble can be made when a lot of time, planning and collusion goes into it? Can anyone say ‘War On Terror’?

Claims that Chuck Hagel, the U.S. president’s candidate for secretary of defense, attended an event held by a group called “Friends of Hamas” appear to be false, a report in the U.S. says.

Media outlets across the world, including those in Israel, reported last week that Hagel spoke at an event organized by “Friends of Hamas,” and received a fee of $25,000. The reports sparked a furor over Hagel’s nomination and 26 Republican senators signed a letter requiring the candidate to disclose the foreign bodies and organizations that had funded him over the past few years.

But according to Dan Friedman, a reporter for the New York Daily News in Washington, the claims regarding Hagel are false. An article published on Wednesday describes a chain of events that he claims led to the rumors about Hagel that spiraled out of proportion and became a seemingly reliable news story.

Friedman relates that he talked to one of his sources, a Republican consultant on Capitol Hill, and tried to find out whether opponents of Hagel’s appointment knew about various controversial pressure groups acting in Washington. For this purpose he made up names such as “Friends of Hamas,” the “Junior League of Hezbollah in France,” and more.

According to Friedman, the source did not respond, but a day later the story that Hagel had addressed pro-Hamas organizations was reported on websites that had a Republican slant. One of the articles, by a journalist named Ben Shapiro, said that the reason Hagel had not publicized the documents showing the fees he received from foreign organizations was because one of the groups was “Friends of Hamas.”

Friedman claims that he talked to Shapiro, who said that the White House spokesman hung up on him when he called to query this, so he wrote that the government did not deny the claims. According to Friedman, Shapiro also said that he didn’t know if the organization exists, but that he relied on his source.

“I am, it seems, the creator of the Friends of Hamas myth,” Friedman wrote. “Doing my job, I erred in counting on confidentiality and the understanding that my example was farcical – and by assuming no one would print an unchecked rumor … If you see a story on Hagel addressing the Junior League of Hezbollah, that’s fake too,” he wrote.

  1. #1 by ruby22-kate on 02/21/2013 - 9:34

    facetious or not, the charge will still be printed in Hagel’s obituary, a permanent stain.

  2. #2 by Tony on 02/21/2013 - 9:34

    Right Wing Neocon sites are already running with it

  3. #3 by CK on 02/21/2013 - 9:34

    Friedman. Shapiro. Look at the names!

  4. #4 by Ponders70 on 02/21/2013 - 9:34

    Friedman, a jew, should be censured at the very least. If not fired outright.
    What a scumbag!

  5. #5 by richard braverman on 02/21/2013 - 9:34

    Friedman will be fired from the “Washington Bagel Post” and Shapiro will be terminated by the “New York Kosher Times”. Both are considering new positions with the “Wall Street Oy Veh Journal”.
    That will teach them.

  6. #6 by Joe Blo on 02/22/2013 - 9:34

    These Jew bastards knew what they were doing. They should be banned from the United Sates, put on a slow boat back to Khazaria. For them it’s a game. Lets screw over the war hero, a man who served this country with honor… lets ruin his reputation and then say we were just kidding! Jews really have a knack for fabricating the “truth”.

  7. #7 by Blake on 02/22/2013 - 9:34

    Tabloid journalism….never tell the truth when a lie will suffice.

  8. #8 by Amy Aremia on 02/23/2013 - 9:34

    Time to put in government someone who will give his consideration to America First. Chuck Hagel will be an excellet Secretary of Defense; putting the welfare of America before any other nation.

  9. #9 by annebeck58 on 02/23/2013 - 9:34

    I’m reading the comments and it seems to me that the guy, Friedman, actually did the right thing. Shapiro, on the other hand, seems to be the one who started this trash-talk.
    Regardless; I’d rather Hagel BE Friends of Hamas than friends of IOF, LIKUD, Israhell– any of IZ. But, that’s not what we have in our government, at all.., not any more.

  10. #10 by ruby22-kate on 02/23/2013 - 9:34

    The one who used the ‘friends of Hamas’ phoney name cannot be that naive not to know the sort of people he was talking to, or he subconsciously wanted what happened, what his malicious remark caused to Chuck Hagel.

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