web analytics
November 26, 2014 / 4 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Why the Mass Media’s Best Effort to Understand Obama’s Failure to Make Israel-Palestinian Peace Fails

Mideast summit

Photo Credit: Avi Ohayon/GPO/Flash90

http://www.rubinreports.blogspot.co.il/

The Washington Post published a very long and detailed article by Scott Wilson back in May 2011 on why President Barack Obama failed to make progress on Israel-Palestinian peace. It still stands as the best mainstream media effort to explain Obama policy. Wilson did a lot of work, conducted many interviews, and strives to be fair. The article is useful in large part because it shows how much of what we’ve been saying about the Obama Administration was accurate and it also includes a lot of useful quotes.

For example, Wilson’s article shows Obama explicitly saying—we know he did it but not that he said it in so many words—that America must distance itself more from Israel as a way to persuade the Arabs to make peace. Of course, Obama’s action instead persuaded the Arab side to give nothing and demand more, a conclusion not drawn in this article.

What’s most lacking in Wilson’s serious effort to get the story, though, is any conceptual sense of why Obama did fail. And this can be largely explained by a curious but constant missing ingredient in mass media coverage. About 95 percent of the article is concerned with Obama’s relationship with Jews and Israel. The Palestinian side of the factor is hardly mentioned. Yet it was this aspect that caused the failure. What makes this stranger in this case is that Wilson is not trying to excuse the Palestinian side for refusing to want to make peace and even for its reluctance to negotiate.

He doesn’t even mention the refusal of Arab states to help Obama by offering Israel something in 2008; Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas’ interview with the Post’s own Jackson Diehl, during Abbas’ first visit to Obama-led Washington, making clear his disinterest in diplomatic progress; Abbas’ pie-in-the-face for Obama when the president called for talks in late 2009, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agreed, and the Palestinians refused; how Abbas sabotaged Obama by making a statehood bid at the UN; and many more such things.

I’m not seeking here to bash Wilson. He has produced the best account we are going to see in the mass media and yet, ironically, he has added very little—except for some juicy Obama quotes from secret meetings—to what we (and by this is meant you and I) already knew and understood.

Why are the Palestinians—their leaders’ intransigence, the radicalism of a public opinion nurtured in this direction for years, the effect of the competition from Hamas, and so on—left out of the equation? We can offer many suggestions but cannot answer this question definitively. That is a task which also requires assigning each of these factors a priority:

–The journalists’ lack of knowledge about Palestinian politics?

–The fear of being considered biased toward Israel, or even “racist?”

–An unconsciously patronizing view in which the Palestinians—and Arabs or Muslims generally—are just “inferior” people who cannot be assigned responsibility for their actions?

–Or the concept that they can only be victims?

–A parallel idea that Israel must always be responsible because it is held to a higher standard?

–Ignorance about Israeli politics and society?

–The seemingly rational view that they must be eager to get a state and end the largely nonexistent these days “occupation” and thus cannot be intransigent?

–The refusal to comprehend that the main theme of Palestinian politics is still wiping Israel off the map and not a two-state solution though this, of course, is not the universal view among them?

–A Washington-centric view which is obsessed with Obama’s domestic political and electoral considerations far more than the actual situation in the Middle East?

–In some cases, though more rarely in America than Europe and certainly not in regard to this article, a deep-seated antagonism toward Jews.

–In some cases, though more rarely in America than Europe and often coming from left-wing Jews in the United States—certainly not the case with this article by Wilson—a deep-seated antagonism toward the existence of a Jewish state.

Wilson here provides us with the case of a reporter who is willing to work hard and genuinely wants to understand what happened. Yet he is only able to offer a series of scenes with no conceptual overview, along with the missing Palestinian factor? Or, to put it bluntly, Obama could stand on his head; Netanyahu could stop all construction on settlement for five years and Palestinian ideology, goals, politics, and internal rivalries would still prevent any breakthrough to a comprehensive peace.

About the Author: Professor Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. See the GLORIA/MERIA site at www.gloria-center.org.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

One Response to “Why the Mass Media’s Best Effort to Understand Obama’s Failure to Make Israel-Palestinian Peace Fails”

  1. Guy Peters says:

    there is no chance of ” Peace” with those who do not want , or value Peace ; the ” palestinians” why , are they encouraged by their false moniker ? They are just Iraqis , Surians , Lenonese ,Egyptians , etc., that infiltrated , invaded ISRAEL ,after WW1 , the collapse of the ” Ottoman” empire ; so , the only thing is to show them the ” door” to Jordan ,or , Suria , Egypt , Saudi Arabia ,and . even Lebnone ,L’GaRooSh !

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Lutfu Turkkan, Turkish legislator, introduced legislation into Turkish parliament to label Israel a terrorist state
Turkish Legislator Pens Bill Naming Israel Terrorist State
Latest Indepth Stories
Red Line Obama

“What’s a line between friends?”

West_Bank_&_Gaza_Map_2007_(Settlements)

Unrest in YESHA and J’m helps Abbas and Abdullah defuse anger, gain politically and appear moderates

Thousands of rabbis pose in front of Chabad-Lubavitch headquarters in Brooklyn on Sunday during the annual International Conference of Chabad-Lubavitch Emissaries.

A “Shliach” means to do acts with complete devotion and dedication in order to help bring Moshiach.

Arabs create opening for terrorists to walk the security wall between Ramallah and Jerusalem and Ramallah.

The pogroms in Chevron took place eighty five years ago, in 1929; the Holocaust began seventy-five years ago in 1939; the joint attack of Israel’s neighbors against the Jewish State of Israel happened sixty-six years ago… yet, world history of anti-Semitism did not stop there, but continues until today. Yes, the primitive reality of Jews […]

“We don’t just care for the children; we make sure they have the best quality of life.”

“Why do people get complacent with the things they’re told?”

Arab opposition to a Jewish State of any size was made known by word and deed in the form of terror

Operation Moses: First time in history that non-blacks came to Africa to free blacks from oppression

As Arabs murder and maim Jews, Jordan’s leaders bark the blood libel of “Israeli aggression.”

Perhaps attacking a terrorist’s legacy broadly and publicly would dissuade others from terrorism?

R’ Aryeh yelled “Run, I’ll fight!” Using a chair against terrorists to buy time so others could flee

Riot started when Muslim students wore the Pal. kaffiyeh and Druze students demanded them removed

The “Media” didn’t want us to know what a kind, giving, loving young woman Dalia was.

A “Palestine” could become another Lebanon, with many different factions battling for control.

Maimonides himself walked and prayed in the permissible areas when he visited Eretz Yisrael in 1165

Having a strong community presence at the polls shows our elected officials we care about the issues

More Articles from Barry Rubin
Youssef Ziedan

The interviewer responds, “There was also Balfour.”

peace_clowns

If the Obama/Kerry peace deal does go through, what would the risks be?

Let me make it plain. There will be mass murder, even genocide in Syria.

A large number of pro-Obama and radical or even anti-Israel cadre are Jews.

Does anyone think the Palestinian Authority will resist daily attacks from Hamas and Fatah radicals?

Secret Service security arrangements were overruled.

The Obama Administration plan is very simple, assuming that everything goes smoothly–which of course it will not.

The less you know about Islam, the better. Ignorance is strength.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/rubin-reports/why-the-mass-medias-best-effort-to-understand-obamas-failure-to-make-israel-palestinian-peace-fails/2012/07/16/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: