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Thursday, July 23, 2009

More MSM Shenanigans

And you wonder why I detest the Main Stream Media and its in-house idealogues?

This story was forwarded to me by someone who lifted it off HonestReporting's site:


In recent days, some ultra-Orthodox residents of Jerusalem violently demonstrated against the decision to open a parking lot on Saturday during the Jewish Sabbath, and against the way authorities handled the case of an ultra-Orthodox woman accused of starving her son.

On Thursday July 16, AFP photographer Ahmad Gharabli snapped [a] photo of one such protester.[He's giving police the finger--ed.]

His caption is straightfoward enough:

An Ultra Orthodox Jewish man gestures during clashes with Israeli forces following demonstrations against the arrest of a woman accused of child abuse in Jerusalem on July 16, 2009. Hundreds of ultra-Orthodox Jews clashed with police for a third day in protest at an 'unjustified' arrest of a religious woman and the opening of a parking lot on Saturdays, the Jewish holy day of rest.

On Monday July 20, the same photo appeared in The Australian's coverage of -- the US-Israel disagreement over construction in eastern Jerusalem. The caption's Down Under version doesn't even state what the demonstration is about:

An Ultra Orthodox Jewish man gestures during clashes with Israeli forces following demonstrations in Jerusalem.

So Australian readers could assume this is an example of Israeli defiance of the US. This, despite the fact that the demonstration that the caption refers to has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the published story in The Australian.

Now why would an editor juxtapose a story about Jewish development in eastern Jerusalem with an unrelated image of an ultra-Orthodox demonstrator? What subtle message does The Australian convey here?


Subtle? It's about as subtle as a slap in the face. Why would he do this (this is a rhetorical question, right)? It's an editor who has an anti-Israel bias of his or her own, and is violating journalistic ethics by deliberately portraying ultra-Orthodox (too often demonized as "Right Wing Settlers" which is laughable) men in a full-on riot over US demands to stop building in Jerusalem.

You might be surprised (or maybe not) at how much this kind of distortion takes place in the English-speaking MSM. I read The Guardian online; I've listened to BBC's malicious spin on Israel. If I were an Englishwoman subjected to this barrage of propaganda on a regular basis, I would hate Israel. No wonder so many Brits and Aussies do....the distortion by the media amounts to libel, but the thing that makes me truly sad is that they do not portray the real Israel. Israel is portrayed only in terms of war and death, and there is no sense of the vibrancy of the country, of the fierce love of life, of the hospitality, the good works, the caring, the cynicism about politics, the day-to-day encounters between Palestinians and Israelis in the thousands that are normative but never mentioned.

No foreign media covers Seeds of Peace, or Humans Without Borders; no foreign media covers Palestinian-Israeli joint ventures on environmental issues. I happened to be in the chemotherapy unit (I was lost) at Hadassah Hospital the other day, and saw women being treated in the order of their number in line, all of whom apparently knew each other. One couple, a Mitrachi Jew and a Palestinian Arab, came together every week for treatment, and these women, regardless of identities, supported each other.

The western elitists of the press and diplomatic and university circles sneer, a la Walt & Meerscheimer, about how Jews always cry "wolf" (oops, "antiSemitism") whenever Israel is criticized. This is inverse logic. Our accusations of anti-Semitism have to do with a remorseless demonizing of Israel through deliberate lies of commission and omission--this caption in The Australian being a prime example.

Not surprisingly, anti-Semitism fueled by this kind of media coverage is rapidly rising in Europe . Understandably, too, since Europe's endemic Jew-hatred is part of their cultural identity.

There are over 70 conflicts raging in the world right now. Human rights violations of the most egregious sort are taking place: human shields in Sri Lanka; hospital shellings in Sri Lanka; the systematic rape of virgins in Iran so they can be executed for political protest; the burning to death of women in India for failing to bear a son; the countless "honor killings" in Moslem countries; the colonization of Tibet; the mass murder under cover of war in the Congo; Darfur's genocide; torture of political prisoners in Iran.....but the vast majority of news stories these days concern the building of homes along the Green Line in land that was illegally occupied by Jordan and lost to Israel in Jordan's subsequent war of aggression.

Yes, when the building of more condominiums for working class Israelis in Har Homa (land purchased by Jews and later conquered by Jordan) gets more outrage and attention from the U.S. State Department and the French Foreign Ministry, there is something wrong with their priorites. If it isn't simply anti-Semitism, then I submit it is anti-Semitism fueled by something much more malevolent: a willingness to do anything to get cheap oil from the Arab Oil Cartel.

"Why Richard, it profits a man nothing to give his soul for the whole world... but for Wales?"

....but for cheap oil?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I understand your frustration. I thought it might please you to see a feature on Seeds of Peace from a western media outlet: http://www.flypmedia.com/issues/plus/15/#1/1

Thursday, July 30, 2009 at 8:14:00 PM GMT+3  

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