OPINION by Nabila Ismail- The Times article by Graeme Hosken (Al-Qaeda at the gates :Friday, 20 February 2015) reports that the United Nations Security Council has informed the South African Government to be on the look out “for 11 international terrorists who might consider using the country as an operational base”. The countries of origin of these “11 terrorists” are also listed.
We would like to remind Hosken that by leaning on a discredited source like Hussein Solomon his report is problematic.
To illustrate why Hussein Solomon remains a discredited source we remind Hosken of the 2013 Westgate siege in Kenya that dominated news. Many South African media quoted Solomon as their source on allegations related to the “White Widow”. When challenged by Reuters to back-up his claims with evidence, Solomon was unable to do so. In fact he admitted on the record, not to have any “factual underpinnings” to these claims.
For years, Solomon has provided the media with reports of so-called terrorist ploys and groups that are apparently present in South Africa. However, sadly, all these allegations are tainted and have no credibility as they lack evidence.
The Media Review Network (MRN) has repeatedly challenged all contentious allegations made by Solomon but, true to form, his inability to respond with evidence exposed his modus operandi. Yet, every few years Solomon resurfaces with the hope of gaining traction and creating alarm and frenzy within South African societal structures.
What we know for sure is that Solomon is out once again rehashing and regurgitating lies and some parts of the media are being, again, sucked into this rhetoric. We remind Hosken about the need to test the credibility of his sources before rushing to print.
As the MRN we hope that Solomon’s rhetoric is seen for what it is: an inclination to misrepresent and distort information which lacks authenticity. MEDIA REVIEW NETWORK