CJPME prompts headline change: From Hamas “command centre” to tunnel with “toilets and air conditioning”

On November 24, 2023, CJPME staff, as well as members of CJPME Saskatoon, wrote to the Saskatoon Star Phoenix about a problematic headline. It read: “Hamas tunnel under Al-Shifa shows how terror group was using the hospital as command center.” However, the story itself described the tunnel under al-Shifa in some detail. Despite Israel’s bold claims about the area serving as a command centre before attacking the hospital, when they went in, they found no more than some toilets and air conditioning — not much else.

After CJPME’s efforts, the headline was updated and now reads, “Toilets and air conditioning: Videos show inside Hamas tunnel under Al-Shifa hospital.” It is a dramatic change and an appropriate one.

This incident helps highlight the need for journalists to be skeptical of Israeli military claims, as history shows the claims are often highly sensationalized. Media should also not exaggerate headlines to generate traffic.