Journalism based on gossip or rumors is a form of “terrorism” and media that stereotype entire populations or foment fear of migrants are acting destructively, Pope Francis said on Thursday.
Francis, who has often strongly defended the rights of refugees and migrants, said journalism should not be used as a “weapon of destruction against persons and even entire peoples”.
“Neither should it foment fear before events like forced migration from war or from hunger,” he added.
Last year, the right-wing newspaper Libero headlined its story on the Paris attacks that killed about 130 people: “Islamic Bastards”.
Another right-wing newspaper, Il Giornale, headlined a story last year on the chaotic situation in Libya and the risk that militants might sneak into Italy with migrants: “ISIS is coming. Let’s arm ourselves”.
Noticing things is terrorism, but terrorism is just a tragic accident.
I can see that Francis has joined in the Goliath versus David struggle to speak power to truth.