Now that he has lost the most recent defamation judgment in the long-running saga of his fight against Charles Enderlin, France2, and the famous al-Dura tape, Philippe Karsenty describes why the French “Court” of Appeals (scare quotes mine) decided against him. Their reasoning would be laughable if the consequences weren’t so very very serious:
On June 26, the Paris Court of Appeals found me guilty of defamation against television station France 2 and broadcaster Charles Enderlin.
After waiting one long week following the verdict, I was finally able to get the written arguments of the judges. The arguments state that — despite the hoax eventually becoming obvious to all who looked at the case — I was found guilty for having said that the al-Dura news report was a hoax … too early, in November 2004.
Had I published that exact same article today now that the facts are clear, I would not have been found guilty…
This verdict confirmed that France 2 still doesn’t have a single piece of evidence to substantiate their al-Dura report. The judges had to reverse the burden of the evidence — using the extremely restrictive French defamation laws — to prevent France 2 from having to produce any evidence to confirm the report’s authenticity, and to temporarily block the recognition of the hoax.
French taxpayer money has been used to silence legitimate and necessary criticism of France 2’s disinformation.
The significance of France 2′s report on the tape and the supposed killing of the boy by Israeli soldiers cannot be overestimated, as well as the significance of this case in showing how little free speech or even truth matters in France. The damage goes on.
[NOTE: You can read my many previous posts on earlier aspects of this case and related ones here. I especially refer you to this post, which explains the very large differences between French and US libel laws, and this one, about the facade of French justice.]