Now a month old, the footage of an Algerian teenager catching a 2 year old plunging from a balcony has now gone viral in the space of a couple of days. But subtle details are changing in the retelling.
The original story, quite detailed, appears in the Daily Sabbah:
As can be seen in the link, the original video is somewhat longer than the clips in the western MSM.
Says the Sabbah:
The incident was captured by a security camera of a shop in an adjacent building.
(Note that the “security camera” appears to move around somewhat as if hand-held, and also seems rather well placed to center on the incident…or maybe I’m just overly suspicious?).
And the final passage in the report:
Zabaat told Demirören News Agency (DHA) that he did what needed to be done to thank God.
By the time the story reaches the New York Post and every other major US news outlet, the camera is specifically stated as “CCTV” giving the impression of an official street surveillance camera, without expressly stating so.
“I was just walking in the road when I saw the little girl at the window. She fell, and thanks to God, I caught her before she hit the ground,”
Already, story details have changed, and that while the monetary reward from the father is mentioned, the religious sacrifice has been dropped from the report, because it might seem offensive to Western sensibilities perhaps? However, as the quote above illustrates, the deity being thanked is still referred to as “God”. The context has changed slightly, however, from “doing what was necessary to thank God” to “thanks to God”, changing from Zabaat taking personal responsibility as God would wish it, to him being merely an instrument of divine intervention.
However, things get interesting when we get to New Zealand’s reporting of the incident (which I first saw today on TV1 news, who say the event happened “last Thursday” )
Here’s Stuff’s version:
“I did what was necessary for the love of Allah,” he told media.
Now it’s changed again: Back to personal action and responsibility, but he did it to gain Allah’s love! And this still appears as a quotation, where it is clearly an interpretation. A loose one at that.
My own interpretation from the original report into western vernacular would be: “Thank God I was in the right place at the right time!”.
The story, as it has travelled around the western world, has been stripped of detail, the video clipped short and “God” has finally become “Allah”. Not that this is an issue for this author, as I regard “God” and “Allah” as different cultural names for the Universal Creator. What concerns me more is the usual not-so-subtle Socialist politicizing of emotive stories involving the Muslim community. Viral or not, I suspect that if the event had involved Buddhists, Christians, Atheists or whatever, the story would not have received half the attention (especially as it’s essentially “old news”). YouTube and other Social Media platforms are filled with similar videos.
Still and all; Well done to the young man and his observational skills and quick reflexes. Good work, mate!