HonestReporting.com had exposed a major London newspaper’s false claim that Israel’s announcement of construction of new homes for Jews in Jerusalem includes a new settlement.
The London Independent also cloned the universal knee-jerk pro-Arab agenda of media worldwide and wrote as a fact in the headline that freeing “prisoners” helps the “peace process” and building damages it.
Israel’s “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has approved the construction of a new settlement on the West Bank, the Independent falsely reported. Only a journalist who is totally prejudiced against Israel could create a new settlement that does did not appear in any government press release or statement and not even in any other newspaper.
Moreover, the headline in the Independent stated, “Israel-Palestine talks boosted by release of 26 prisoners – then immediately set back by new Jerusalem settlement plans.”
The only way a journalist or copy editor could understand there is “a new settlement in east Jerusalem” is to define every Jewish residential unit a “settlement.”
If that were the case, there are several hundred thousand settlements in Judea and Samaria and areas of Jerusalem formerly occupied by Jordan and now claimed by the Palestinian Authority.
Honest Reporting asked the Independent to make a correction, but the newspaper did not respond. The media watchdog then sent a second email, with a threat that it would complain to the British Press Complaints Commission.
That finally brought a response from the Deputy Managing Editor, who wrote HonestReporting, “Thank you for your email. I have already made an appropriate amendment to the story on-line. Indeed, the offending paragraph has been removed from the body of the article.”
But the Independent was not satisfied and then published a follow-up article that told its readers, “Israel has taken a firm step towards peace talks with Palestine by releasing a group of 26 prisoners – then almost immediately undid the progress by announcing plans to build a set of new settlements in east Jerusalem.
Now we indeed know that the Independent thinks every Jewish home is a settlement, because instead of a “new” settlement,” it wrote there will be a “set of new settlements.”
The newspaper then made amends and updated the article to read, “Israel has taken a firm step towards peace talks with Palestine by releasing a group of prisoners – then almost immediately undid the progress by announcing plans to build in east Jerusalem.”
Now that it has made it clear that there are no new “settlements” to be built in Jerusalem, that leaves a host of other glaring sins of journalism that would not pass Journalism 101, at least not in the days when journalism was not a euphemism for anti-Zionism.
The reportage of the Independent is not different from virtually every other major news outlet, especially those that use wire services. It unapologetically adopts the Palestinian Authority position that peace means agreeing to everything the Palestinian Authority wants.
The international assumption is that Israel has no right to let Jews live in what Mahmoud Abbas wants to be known as “Palestine,” a moniker that the Independent uses as if it already were a country.
The media “monkey see, monkey do” mentality, which I first witnessed while covering a Congressional bill when I was studying journalism way back when, cannot get out of its mindset that “progress ”occurs whenever Israel agrees to another Arab demand.
The mentality unquestionably assumes that the result will be peace.
That leaves the most glaring universal illusion that the murderers who were held in Israeli jails were “prisoners” and not terrorists.
Bu there is hope.
The bigger the lie, the bigger it will explode, and the hope is that instead of “prisoners” detonating the peace talks by murdering more Israelis, the United States will simply give up one day, give U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry a one-way ticket back to Washington from Tel Aviv and spend more time trying to solve the problem of its national debt.
About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.
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