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Posts Tagged ‘Fox News’

Disturbing Trends At Fox News

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

“Fair and Balanced” is fast becoming more slogan than operating system at Fox News, and nowhere is this seen more clearly than in the way Israel is increasingly being treated and the extent to which anti-Semitism is tolerated as part of the cable channel’s conversation.

Here are a few examples:

● For some time, Fox has been using Michael Scheuer as a commentator. Bill O’Reilly is most responsible for this, but Judge Anthony Napolitano also made Scheuer a regular. This pompous “head of the Bin Laden Desk” at the CIA foams at the mouth whenever he can steer the conversation to Israel.

In his book Marching Toward Hell, Scheuer gives us that nasty bit of anti-Semitic trope that “the war in Iraq…was instigated by U.S. citizen Israel-firsters and their evangelical Christian allies.”

His subliminal theme is that Israel exerts undue influence on U.S. foreign policy through a network of powerful lobbies, organizations and large political donors. Scheuer is ever ready to blame Israel and by extension its American supporters for all that is wrong in the Middle East – and Fox gives him platform to do that.

● Before Scheuer, O’Reilly’s “stand up guy” was Al Sharpton, who in 1991 referred to Jews in Crown Heights as “diamond merchants” and in 1995 helped provoke an anti-Jewish riot in Harlem that resulted in several deaths at a Jewish-owned store Sharpton tagged as being run by “interlopers.”

● O’Reilly also harbors Marc Lamont Hill, an offbeat academic who defends the likes of the execrable Ward Churchill, fired from the University of Colorado because of his characterization of the victims of 9/11 as “little Eichmanns.” In defending Churchill, Hill gives hint to where his own feelings are. O’Reilly continues to keep him on.

● Another negative trendsetter is Sean Hannity, who has given new life to Pat Buchanan, a man with a long history of making remarks widely considered anti-Semitic; a man characterized by columnist Charles Krauthammer as “fanning hatred for Jews with his sly and not so sly allusions to Jewish power, Jewish influence, Jewish disloyalty” and by Alan A. Ryan, Jr., a former Justice Department prosecutor, as “the spokesman for Nazi war criminals in America.”

This is the same Buchanan who said “Capitol Hill is Israeli-occupied territory”; who first coined the term “amen corner” in reference to American Jews who support Israel; and who claimed that U.S. entry into conflict with Iraq was driven by Jewish neoconservatives solely for the benefit of Israel.

It’s the same Buchanan who wrote, “If you want to know ethnicity and power in the United States Senate, thirteen members of the Senate are Jewish folks who are from two percent of the population. That is where real power is at.”

The same Buchanan who said, “If [Elena] Kagan [President Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court] is confirmed, Jews, who represent less than two percent of the U.S. population, will have thirty-three percent of the Supreme Court seats. Is this Democrats’ idea of diversity?”

His presence on Fox besmirches the network.

● Then there is the constant ignorance of Geraldo Rivera. One only has to spend a few seconds listening to his reporting from the “occupied territories,” as he calls them, to gauge the depth of his ignorance of the facts on the ground. Most recently he had a tete a tete with his “old and dear friend” Hanan Ashwari, the dependable propagandist for the Palestinian narrative. Geraldo regularly parrots that Palestinian narrative.

● Most recently, Bob Beckel, on “The Five,” appeared to be channeling Sharpton when he referred to a group of Israelis meeting with Mitt Romney as “diamond merchants.” Bob and Fox must know that the term used in that way is redolent with stereotype and prejudice.

None of this is casual stuff. Anti-Semitism creeps into media environments like Fox News in innocuous doses, but soon becomes ever-present and accepted.

In the early 1990s the courageous William F. Buckley would not allow the anti-Semitism of a senior editor named Joseph Sobran to contaminate National Review, the magazine Buckley had founded in 1955. Buckley also publicly castigated the aforementioned Buchanan for his statements on Jews and Israel. There seems to be no such compunction at Fox.

What Bill Buckley did was exhibit a moral courage that most of the media lack and that Fox is now losing. It takes courage to do the right thing and Fox doesn’t seem to have it as it starts its descent into that cauldron of opinion in the so-called middle where right and wrong are always relative and never absolute.

Blogger Puts Congressional Aide’s Get Refusal In Context

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, is becoming the focus of a tough social media campaign, according to Fox News. Not for anything he himself has done, but for the refusal of his adviser, Aharon Friedman, to give his ex-wife a proper get.

Without a get she can’t start a new life with another Jewish man, which some have likened to domestic abuse. So now political Jews have decided to put the pressure on Congressman Camp, hoping for some trickle down pressure.

They go on his Facebook page, leaving messages like “Give Tamar her freedom like every human deserves!”

There’s an online petition going on, too. What can I tell you, this Internet thing seems to be catching on with folks…

But I was curious to hear the man’s side (typical, right?) and found some explanation by Sarah Wildman on Huffington (what can I say, my curiosity is without boundaries). Wildman writes:

The Epstein-Friedman case is complicated. Friedman was granted a joint-custody agreement in the civil courts, one that gives him three weekends a month, but weekends that start at 6 p.m. In Philadelphia. On Friday nights. Which means, for a Sabbath-observant Jew, Friedman can’t really see his daughter until Sunday. That’s wrenching, that’s awful; that, many believe, is unfair. The kid is so far away to begin with – and Friedman, by all accounts, begged his wife to move back to the D.C. metro area so he can see the girl more.

So Friedman is holding back the get until he gets to visit his daughter. It’s messy and really shouldn’t go sooo public, which is why I’ve stayed away from it all this time. But now I saw a reason to touch it, to provide CONTEXT.

Now you can have your megaphone back…


You get the feeling the private and the public is getting a tad mixed here? just wondering…

Geraldo The ‘Palestinianist’

Wednesday, April 17th, 2002
It happens every time: Let Israel bomb empty office buildings of the Palestinian Authority and the mainstream American media will for the most part restrain from pouncing – and point to that restraint as “proof” of their even-handedness. But let Israel take military action on a fuller scale and the wolves not only pounce, they devour.The wolves were in full feeding frenzy last week, as Israel mounted what was described over and over by anchormen and reporters as its largest military operation in the West Bank in decades. But this was not just any old conventional military operation, or so we were assured by such delightfully authoritative sources as Geraldo (“I’ll be packing heat in Afghanistan”) Rivera, the longtime sleazefest host turned globe-trotting correspondent for Fox News.

To see, hear and read some of the more apocalyptic dispatches from Israel and the Palestinian-controlled areas last week was to come away with the impression that once again the nasty war criminal Sharon had unleashed the crushing might of his brutal army on the ramshackle refugee camps housing hordes of helpless, peace-craving Palestinian women and children.

Suddenly forgotten were the weeks – excuse us, months (actually decades, but let’s keep the story line simple) – of Palestinian atrocities; the ceaseless targeting of Jewish civilians by suicide bombers in full service to everyone’s favorite “religion of peace”; the frenzied bloodlust in the faces of Palestinians celebrating the murder of yet another Israeli mother or teenager.

It’s a tiresome phenomenon by now, this self-inflicted collective amnesia on the part of media types who fancy themselves informed and objective observers but who become, by dint of their overly emotional, root-for-the-perceived-underdog reporting, transparent cheerleaders for one side in the conflict.

As Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz noted, “focusing mainly on Israeli retaliation tends to leave out the horrible Palestinian provocations – the suicide bombers that have killed Israeli civilians – that prompted the response in the first place. It would be like showing U.S. warplanes hitting Afghan towns without mentioning that there was this episode called Sept. 11.”

Readers fortunate enough to have missed Geraldo’s peroration on Fox News on Wednesday, March 13 will have to forgive the Monitor for inflicting on them the following sampler of the sage’s deep thoughts, but the opportunity is just too tempting to pass up.

“When you use tanks and F-16s … against thickly populated civilian towns and cities, that’s not fighting terrorism,” intoned Geraldo, referring to Israel’s attacks on Palestinian targets. “That is inflicting terrorism.”

After describing himself to anchor Brit Hume as “a Zionist my entire life,” Geraldo said that “watching the suffering of the Palestinian people, the real suffering of these people, I’ve also become a Palestinianist, in a sense.”

Asked by Hume whether he thought Israel was intentionally killing civilians, as he seemed to imply with his charge that Israel was “inflicting terrorism,” Geraldo insisted that he would never, ever suggest such a thing. That disclaimer out of the way, Geraldo was off to the races:

“But the tactics [the Israelis are] employing, the prime minister, Ariel Sharon, over the severe objections of his defense minister….You can’t do these things. You can’t, for example, round up Palestinian young men and put numbers on their arms to make it easier to identify them in the future. What in the world does that remind the world of? That reminds the world, that reminds Jews, of what Hitler and those Nazi pigs inflicted on the Jewish race during the Second World War.

“Maybe the comparison is not precise. Maybe it’s not exactly parallel, but the echoes of it are unmistakable. It is indefensible. These people, the Palestinians, they bleed just like we do. They suffer just like we do. They have the same aspirations,” blah blah blah….

And so it went. You get the picture. Geraldo Rivera, “Palestinianist.” Last sighted high over the Mediterranean, propelled solely by his own hot air, ever the noxious gasbag.

Jason Maoz can be reached at jmaoz@jewishpress.com

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/media-monitor/media-monitor-39/2002/04/17/

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