The Washington Post claimed on Saturday that the U.S. has brokered a deal between Israel and Hamas to hit pause on the fighting for five days to “free women and children hostages,” but according to the National Security Council, WaPo’s headline is fake news.
“We have not reached a deal yet,” National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson wrote on X, “but we continue to work hard to get to a deal.”
We have not reached a deal yet, but we continue to work hard to get to a deal. https://t.co/rbSqcqfaKo
— Adrienne Watson (@NSC_Spox) November 19, 2023
It is unclear whether the Post edited its headline and lede after Watson’s fact-check, but, as of Sunday morning, when you click on the actual story, it tells a different tale.
On WaPo’s website, the headline reads “U.S. close to deal with Israel and Hamas to pause conflict, free some hostages,” and the first sentence repeats that the brokered deal has not yet been finalized: “Israel and Hamas are close to agreement on a U.S.-brokered deal that would free dozens of women and children held hostage in Gaza in exchange for a five-day pause in fighting, say people familiar with the emerging terms.”
So, either the Post quietly updated its report, or it intentionally misled readers with its post on X.
As BizPac Review reported, President Biden spoke last week with Qatari emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani and “condemned unequivocally” Hamas for its continued holding of American hostages, including a three-year-old toddler whose parents were murdered by Hamas on the first day, October 7th, of the group’s savage attack on Israel.
— BPR based (@DumpstrFireNews) November 13, 2023
And, on the same day the Post declared on X that a deal had been reached, it also ran an op-ed ostensibly written by President Biden in which he stated that “for over a month, the families of more than 200 hostages taken by Hamas, including babies and Americans, have been living in hell, anxiously waiting to discover whether their loved ones are alive or dead.”
“At the time of this writing,” according to the president, “my team and I are working hour by hour, doing everything we can to get the hostages released.”
In a lengthy Saturday thread on X, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the global pressure for a ceasefire and the hostages.
“[E]ven within the US and around the world, increasingly heavy pressure has been used against us in recent weeks. They pressured us to agree to a full ceasefire – we refused: We will only agree to a temporary ceasefire and only in exchange for the return of our hostages,” he stated.
“Together with my colleagues,” Netanyahu continued, “I reject these pressures and say to the world: We will continue to fight until victory – until we destroy Hamas and bring our hostages back home.”
Together with my colleagues, I reject these pressures and say to the world: We will continue to fight until victory – until we destroy Hamas and bring our hostages back home.
— Prime Minister of Israel (@IsraeliPM) November 18, 2023
In an earlier press conference, the prime minister cautioned of “unsubstantiated rumors” surrounding the hostages.
“Concerning the hostages, there are many unsubstantiated rumors, many incorrect reports. I would like to make it clear: As of now, there has been no deal,” he said, according to the Washington Examiner. “But I want to promise: When there is something to say – we will report to you about it.”
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