This NYT report by Isabel Kershner is titled "Israeli Report Casts New Doubts on Shooting in Gaza", but if it were another country one suspects it might be titled "Government report spins boy's death as trial verdict looms". The Israeli government has made hasbara about the al-Dura shooting one of its signature image campaign, regularly seeding doubt about the version recorded and witnessed by France 2 cameramen which became an iconic image of the occupation of Palestine. It has had little difficulty in recruiting the help of online pro-Israel activists who launched this site (linked to by the NYT without identifying its ideological, propagandistic character — e.g. "Europeans, who repeatedly ran this footage, unwittingly waved the flag Jihad (sic) in front of their Muslim populations.") and mainstream media journalists like James Fallows of The Atlantic who ran a repulsive long piece in 2002 that tackled the al-Dura affair entirely from an Israeli perspective.
The new findings published on Sunday were the work of an Israeli government review committee, which said its task was to re-examine the event “in light of the continued damage it has caused to Israel.” They come after years of debate over the veracity of the France 2 report, which was filmed by a Gaza correspondent, Talal Abu Rahma, and narrated by the station’s Jerusalem bureau chief, Charles Enderlin, who was not at the present at the scene.
The Israeli government review suggested, as other critics have, that the France 2 footage might have been staged. It noted anomalies like the apparent lack of blood in appropriate places at the scene, and said that raw footage from the seconds after the boy’s apparent death seem to show him raising his arm.
“Contrary to the report’s claim that the boy is killed, the committee’s review of the raw footage showed that in the final scenes, which were not broadcast by France 2, the boy is seen to be alive,” the review said. “Based on the available evidence, it appears significantly more likely that Palestinian gunmen were the source of the shots which appear to have impacted in the vicinity” of the boy and his father.
Except there is not much debate about the "veracity" of the report anywhere else, and France 2 and the national union of journalists has stood behind Enderlin. This is not an investigation, this is a government propaganda operation timed ahead of a court verdict that may further damage Israel's image and an ongoing attempt at damage control by attempting to muddy the waters of a case that is iconic of the Israeli occupation of Palestine precisely because children are so often its victims.