Monday, December 29, 2008

December 29 'Media Critique': "Israel at War: A Primer"

Well that was quick, though it isn’t a 'Media Critique’, but rather a pre-emptive strike. The faithful need to be inculcated on the received truth so they recognise evil media bias when they see it.

There’s a huge selection to choose from but I’ll just pick out a few of the most glaring.

Israel left Gaza in 2005, giving Palestinians the chance to run their own lives. Despite this, more than 6300 rockets and mortars have been fired into Israel since then.
Just forget the fact that post-withdrawl the Palestinians announced a one month cessation of all rocket fire, in which to lift the blockade on Gaza. Israel responded by tightening the blockade. The Palestinians chance to run their lives in Gaza does not extend to control of its borders, coast or air-space, all of which are controlled by Israel.

The deterioration in the situation is the direct result of Hamas policy. It violated the calm, is firing against and attacking Israeli citizens, and is investing all its resources in arming itself and gathering power
Nevermind that during the "ceasfire" dozens of Palestinians were killed by Israel in Gaza.

If Hamas would renounce the path of terror, there would be no need for the Israeli action. Quiet will be answered with quiet, but terror will elicit a response.
Don’t expect anyone to suggest that Israel renounce the path of violence, or withdraw its illegal settlements from Palestinian territory.

The goal of the Israeli military action is to strike the growing infrastructure of terror and ability of Hamas and its allied organizations to launch missiles and mortars at Israeli citizens and carry out terror attacks
That’s why so many of the dead are police officers. One strike killed a dozen traffic police. No more parking tickets of mass destruction.

Hamas has demonstrated its increased threat as the Ashdod area was hit by rockets, marking the northernmost point where Hamas rockets have reached, more than 40km north of Gaza.
Which where launched on Dec 28, the day after Israel killed over 200 in Gaza to prevent rocket launches. Gotta love that prevention.

The terrorist organizations work out of the Palestinian population centers and cynically exploit them, so the responsibility for Palestinian civilians getting hurt rests on their shoulders. Israel, for its part directs its activity at terrorist elements and does its utmost to refrain from harming the innocent.
This is the lamest of apologetics and is in direct contravention to the Geneva Conventions. Even id these claims are true they do not absolve Israel of its responsibilities. And hasn’t anybody told HR? – the whole of Gaza is a "population centre", a very dense one and the dropping of large bombs in such areas will kill innocent civilians.

There’s much more along the same vein. I’d imagine that the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been busy providing propaganda hasbara a list of talking-points to counter the natural reaction Israels spectacle in the Gaza Strip will provoke amongst normal people.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

December 24 `Media Critique’: "BBC's Christmas Odyssey"

It’s time for HonestReporting’s yearly attempt at the evil-media-using-Christmas-to-attack-Israel story.

It’s a very poor effort, but at least it’s a change from
this regular routine .

This is the moderately interesting
BBC story from Aleem Maqbool.

The gist of HRs complaint is this,

Unfortunately, he over-romanticizes the Palestinians while portraying the IDF in a sinister light, exerting a strong but subtle bias.

Which means that he spoke to real live Palestinians and heard their stories in their own words.

Maqbool was also guilty of conspiring with "extremist[s]", a certain George Rishmawi who is a co-founder of the ISM. He’s apparently an extremist because the ISM volunteers have,
placed themselves in front of Israeli Army vehicles, removed concrete boundaries from roads
That would make Gandhi an extremist too.

Then there is more on his "subtle bias",

Maqbool doesn't directly attack Israel. He doesn't have to. The bias in his diary is much more subtle

HR says "Israelis are portrayed as malevolent:", citing this example,

From al-Badhan, the "Journey of Death" trail started. It is called that, not just for its long, steep, rocky climbs, or the fact that Israeli snipers frequently use the mountain tops ...

HR don’t dispute the fact of the statement. Is it true? Yes, it certainly is. So it’s HR who designate the Israeli snipers as "malevolent". I won’t disagree.

And on and on it goes in the same tortured fashion.

I’d like to think that this is last time this year that I’ll have to wade through the sewer that is HR, but given the events of yesterday, I’m sure there’s at least one more malodorous ‘Media Critique’ on the way before 2009.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Round Up

Here’s a quick review of what I’ve ignored over the past month.

On November 30 we were treated to Honest Reportings take on the Mumbai terrorist attack. It was a long- winded diatribe on one of HRs favourite subjects – demanding that the media use the ‘t’ word. ‘Militants’ and ‘gunmen’ aren’t good enough for HR.

Their stance is rather undermined by the fact that just back in October they were complaining about the media describing Israeli settlers as ‘militants’ for their politically motivated violence against Palestinians. Did it demand the 't' word? HR, being ever fair and principled in these matters, advised that they were just "young hooligans".

And on December 15 a further reprise of the monumentally underwhelming issue of the Iranian Press TV. Now it has extended its broadcasts through Sky TV.

But the real issue in this ‘Media Critique’ was a subsequent section titled "Gaza: More 'Blame Israel' ". This is quintessential HR in all its dishonest glory.

HR start with this,

While the suffering of Gaza's Palestinians is not in dispute…

And immediately demonstrate their sincerity in the very next sentence,
There have been many stories published concerning alleged shortages in Gaza….

And then,

many Gazans have become addicted to readily available prescription drugs to help them through difficult times. Is this the same Gaza that has been 'denied' medical supplies?

Not to mention the previous claims that power cuts in Gaza are actually due to Hamas conducting a media campaign.

So, to summarise, HR don’t deny that Palestinians in Gaza are suffering….........from an abundance of goods from Egypt, addiction to prescribed medications and over zealous PR.