Thursday, October 15, 2015

Western media and Jew-hate: Israel stands alone

The fact that Israel is the world’s only Jewish state means a lot. It means that Jew-hate has a focus.

In practical terms, the Jewish state brings a geographic bonus to anti-Semitism: with Israel, you not only get to hate Jews, you get to hate a country as well.   

‘Palestinians’ hate Israel. Jihadists hate Israel. Many internet sites hate Israel.

Israel is important. It elevates Jew-hate to the international stage.

Even the Western press seems to hate Israel. Actually, the Western press may not hate Israel. But then, its behaviour suggests it does.  

Consider some Western headlines about last week’s Arab terror attacks in Israel. Those headlines make Israel a villain. They make villainous Arabs a victim.

That’s a problem. When Jews are victims, such headlines  smell like Jew-hate.

For more than a month now, Arabs have been attacking Jews on the streets of Jerusalem, and in other locations around Israel. Jews have been stabbed, shot and run down by cars (Alex Griswold, “After Palestinians Murder Innocents, Media Somehow Makes Israel the Villain”, mediaite, October 14, 2015). Arabs have murdered at least 8 Jews, wounded dozens and traumatized hundreds.

To a professional, objective journalist, the story unfolding in Israel is pretty straight-forward.  Arabs, including teenagers as young as 13, are running around violently attacking random innocents, then getting themselves shot by police or by Jewish bystanders.  But if a journalist—or his editor--prefers Jew-hate, this story becomes less straight-forward. It has to be biased against Israel. It has to hide how the Palestinian Authority incites for these attacks and glorifies them.

In fact, that’s exactly what some in the Western press have done.

For example, Alex Griswold (ibid) points to some recent American, Canadian and British headlines about these Arab attacks against Jews in Israel. In these attacks, the attackers had been killed by Israeli security forces, often at the point of attack. Here’s what Griswold found:

From the LA Times: “6 Palestinian teens die amid Mideast unrest”.

Griswold doesn’t comment on this headline. But, given his comments on other headlines (below), you can see here that it’s unclear how, where and why these teens died. This headline, if written to be accurate, should have read, ‘6 Palestinian teens killed while attacking Jews in Israel’. The LATimes headline didn’t do that.

Why didn’t the LATimes report that Arabs were attacking Jews? We have no idea why such an otherwise professional newspaper should fail to report an Israel story accurately.

From the Toronto Star: “Palestinians shot dead by Israeli police in two separate knife attacks”.

There are two problems here. First is the suggestion that it was the Israeli police who acted improperly by shooting ‘Palestinians’. The second problem is that twisting the news to suggest that Israel is villainous contorts the meaning of the story. As Griswold (above) writes, “Huh? Israeli police shoot Palestinians… in knife attacks? How does that make any sense?” (ibid)

From the Wall Street Journal: “Two Palestinian Teens Killed, Two Injured By Israeli Police”.

The suggestion in this headline is that ‘brutal Israelis are killing Palestinians in cold blood’—just as ‘Palestinians’ have been falsely claiming for years. Clearly, the headline ignores the truth. Clearly, the headline distorts what happened. Clearly, Israel, the victim, has become the villain.

The Journal didn’t just present a bad, inaccurate, misleading and anti-Israel headline. Part of the contents of the writing beneath the headline read, “Israeli police shot and killed two Palestinian teenagers and injured two others in Jerusalem on Monday after knife-wielding assailants attacked Israeli civilians and officers…” Griswold’s comment is, “Gosh, why were the Israeli police attacking these poor Palestinians when those knife-wielding assailants were still on the loose?”

Guess the villain in this headline. The villain is Israel.

You’ll notice that all these headlines are technically accurate (ibid). But they distort.

Imagine the outrage if a foreign news outlet had run a headline about the Boston Bomber that said, “After Boston Bombing, Police Shoot Muslim Boy in Suburban Neighborhood” (ibid). That’s what these headlines do to Israel.

These headlines (and stories) omit important information. They intentionally distort the truth (ibid). Such distortion makes the victims of the story the villains. For readers who never get past the headline (aka, most people), that inaccurate impression sticks (ibid).

It seems that these headlines contain a Western message: Israel is the villain.

The BBC wrote, “Palestinian shot dead after Jerusalem attack kills two.” Setting aside the clear obfuscation of who was actually behind the attack, this headline take the extra step of framing the dead murderer as the real victim (the murderer is the “Palestinian shot dead”). The actual innocent victims appear as afterthoughts.

One headline smearing Israel could be a mistake. Two is troubling. But in the last week, we’ve seen at least five such anti-Israel headlines (ibid). This is beyond troubling. It’s an industry commitment to villainize Israel.

Western media peddles Jew-hate. Israel stands alone.

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