Claim No. 1: The Israelis fired hundreds of bullets, specifically targeting Muhammad Al Durah and his father, Jamal Al Durah.
As we saw above, Talal Abu Rahma’s claims simply do not tally with the video he recorded of the alleged shooting. Even the premise of Abu Rahma’s claims strains credibility. Since the distance between the Israeli base and the barrel near which the Al Durahs were sitting was less than 120 meters, it is implausible, at best, that Israeli snipers would have fired hundreds of bullets to eliminate two conjoined stationary targets at such close range. In addition, the Israeli soldiers had no reason to concentrate fire toward or near the barrel. The Palestinian positions toward which the Israelis were returning fire were nowhere near the barrel.
Even if one chose to believe that the Israeli soldiers were woefully incompetent, irrational or acted with blind malice one would still be left with the fact that Abu Rahma’s own video footage belies all the essential elements of his account. Given that both common sense and the physical evidence contradict Abu Rahma’s narrative of this incident, it ought to be rejected as unsupportable. One can only wonder why Charles Enderlin continues to promote it.
Despite Abu Rahma’s insistence that the Israelis fired “hundreds” of bullets at the Al Durahs, not a single bullet – or even a bullet fragment – has ever been produced to corroborate his claims. Of the “hundreds” of bullets alleged to have been fired by Israeli soldiers at the Al Durahs, only three shots are seen striking the wall behind the Al Durahs. Ballistics experts — including France’s leading ballistics expert, Jean-Claude Schlinger — based upon the dust signature of these shots visible in the video, determined that these shots could not possibly have come from the Israeli position – and were fired from positions that we know were manned by Palestinian gunmen.
A cloud of dust on the ground well in front of the Al Durahs – apparently kicked up by a single burst of automatic weapon fire– is observable toward the end of the video sequence. However, the source and caliber of the fire cannot be determined. No change in the number of bullet holes in the wall by the Al Durahs before and after the burst is visible when the dust clears.
But here is the kicker:
In the course of an extensive interview with journalist Esther Schapira, Talal Abu Rahma alternatively claimed that he collected bullets and/or filmed bullets at the scene.
Here Abu Rahma claims that he only filmed the bullets at the scene:
Abu Rahma then claimed France2 collected bullets:
However, neither Abu Rahma nor France2, nor anyone else has ever produced any bullets or film of the bullets from the scene. Indeed, Abu Rahma also could not or would not answer any of Schapira’s specific questions about the bullets. Instead, when Schapira pressed Abu Rahma to disclose the length and type of bullet he filmed, his reaction was to smile and mutter that France2 had “some secrets for ourselves”.
“Secrets”? Really? Tala Abu Rahma, accused IDF soldiers of killing Muhammad Al Durah in cold blood and France2 disseminated video with narration by Charles Enderlin, who knew the footage would inflame great passion– and, indeed, moved that narrative forward. What would justify or explain France2’s keeping “some secrets” from the Israelis and the viewing public? Since France2 is a French government-funded media network, Israel requested through diplomatic channels any bullets that France2 collected. None has ever been produced.