Before the days of social media, left-leaning propaganda publications had been able to build their preferred narratives by selectively showing and hiding whatever furthered their agenda. They’re still trying their tricks in 2021, but are being caught red-handed.
The Quint yesterday did a story on Faisal Gulzar, the 16-year-old terrorist who’d been killed in a counter insurgency operation. Apart from its usual tactic of normalizing militants — The Quint described Faizal Gulzar as a ‘shy, average student’ — the Quint also quoted his father’s appeal to his son while he was holed up and surrounded by forces. “The first jihad for him is to take care of his four sisters and get them married. If you don’t return him, you will have to answer on the day of judgement,” his father, Gulzar Ahmad Ganie, had said, in an apparent appeal to militants’, Quint’s story said.
This portrayed Faizal Gulzar as hailing from a normal, peace-loving family, and his descent into militancy could’ve been passed off as a one-off case of a young boy falling prey to extremism. But this wasn’t the only statement made by his family — in fact, Faisal Gulzar mother had said that if she had a second son, she’d happily offer him to terrorism. This was seen in a video of the grieving family.
But by choosing to selectively cover his father’s statement, and leaving out his mother’s statement, The Quint took the focus away from the extremism in the valley, which allows mothers who’ve lost their sons to say that if they had a second son, they’d happily send him for jihad.
And it wasn’t only in its article that Quint highlighted the father’s statement. On Twitter, as shared by Twitter user czkne145, the Quint also shared his father’s appeal as a fleet, but made no mention of his mother’s statement.
This isn’t the first time that left-leaning propagandists have sought to hide the extremism that’s rampant in the valley. Several years ago, after a Kashmiri man had plainly told Barkha Dutt that Burhan Wani was fighting for his religion and Allah, Dutt had interjected, and prompted the man to say that Wani was instead fighting for Kashmir. As the man had again repeated ‘Islam’, Dutt had appeared to whisper ‘Kashmir’, at which point the man had said that Wani was fighting for both Islam and Kashmir.
As it turns out, it’s no surprise that The Quint’s coverage of Kashmir is heavily biased. Jehangir Ali, the journalist who has written the latest piece about the 16-year-old militant, has some pretty extreme views himself. In 2012, he’d compared Kasab with the Indian army. ““Kasab killed 17 people in Mumbai and he has been hanged. Indian forces killed 35 innocent people in Bijbehara and they got promoted,” he’d written.
Interestingly, The Quint is one of the official fact checkers for Facebook .