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January 23, 2017 / 25 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Khaled Abu Toameh’

Hail Six ‘Most Dishonest Reporters of 2016’ [video]

Wednesday, December 21st, 2016

HonestReporting, a media watchdog group whose stated mission is “Defending Israel from Media Bias,” on Wednesday released the list of winners of its annual Dishonest Reporting Awards. And so, without further ado, here is a taste of their choices (for the complete thing, kindly click here).

1. Most Distrusted Reporter: Luke Baker, Reuters’ Jerusalem bureau chief, who twitted that Israeli security is “idiocy” (they strip-searched him leaving Gaza), called rightwing Jewish groups “Jewish nutjobs,” and dismissed veteran Arab-Israeli journalist Khaled Abu Toameh’s criticism of the media was “a joke.” He also has a reputation for a thin skin when it comes to others criticizing him.

2. Most Malicious Media Outlet: The Independent, whose Israel-related stories this year were written by desk journalists back in the UK who scan other sources on the lookout for juicy stories to rehash that will appeal to The Independent’s readership. Here’s a doozy headline: “Ramadan 2016: Israel ‘cuts off water supply to West Bank’ during Muslim holy month.” In reality, the drop in water pressure had been caused by a burst pipe due to poor maintenance on the part of the Arab customers, as well as water theft by Arab non-customers.

3. Most Anti-Semitic Editor: Leila Hatoum, Newsweek Middle East, whose memorable twit, “hitler’s mom was jewish. Prostitute who gave him an STD was jewish, his gf was jewish & his dr was jewish,” makes perfect sense, especially if, in the end, Hatoum’s psychiatrist at the insane asylum will also turn out to be, you know…

4. Worst Celebrations of Special Days: AFP, which dedicated its International Women’s Day coverage to the hardships of Arab women whose husbands are held in Israeli jails.

5. Best Example of a Blood Libel’s Half Life: Sydney Morning Herald, whose cartoon of an old guy pointing an electronic device at a city that’s being blown up helped identify him as Israel by adorning his head with a yarmulke and the back of his armchair with a star of David. Incidentally, nowhere in the heated discussion of this repugnant display of anti-Semitism did anyone mention that pointing an electric device at a city to blow it up is kind of an Arab thing.

6. Best Glimmer of Hope: National Public Radio, which acquiesced to listeners’ demands and removed a map illustration that showed the Middle East where the tiny dot long the Mediterranean coast we normally call “Israel” was named “Palestine.”

Next week, HonestReporting will announce its Dishonest Reporter of 2016 award. There are so many, it’s an embarrassment of riches.

JNi.Media

Khaled Abu Toameh: PA Police Break Legs of Arab Children

Sunday, August 7th, 2016

Israeli Arab Award winning journalist, lecturer and documentary filmmaker Khaled Abu Toameh on Saturday tweeted that “Palestinian policemen broke arms and legs of children during protest against power cuts in Yamoun, Jenin.”

Abu Toameh is a staunch defender of freedom of speech and has criticized the Palestinian Authority for arresting and harassing Palestinian journalists in the West Bank.

In the Durban Review Conference, Abu Toameh criticized Israeli Arab Knesset members for supporting extremism and calling Israel a “state of apartheid” rather than fighting for the rights of Arab citizens of Israel.

Abu Toameh says he is routinely subject to condemnations, and is often threatened. He notes, however, that more threats are coming from outside the Middle East than from within the Palestinian Authority, and that those who threaten him “roundly acknowledge” that he is telling the truth and don’t question his reporting, but merely want him to “shut up.”

 

 

David Israel

AP Banned Interviews with Non-Anti-Israel Professor

Monday, December 1st, 2014

In a wide-ranging piece that covers mostly old ground in a new way and for a new audience, former Associated Press journalist Matti Friedman reveals one astonishing fact: the AP banned interviews of a well-informed, Jerusalem-based professor, Gerald Steinberg, and his monitoring organization, NGO-Monitor.

Professor Gerald Steinberg and his organization NGO-Monitor – work to expose the ideological bias and political agendas of the anti-Israel NGOs in Israel and the role they play in the conflict – the same anti-Israel NGOs that international reporters rely on for their news reporting.

From the NGO-Monitor website:

NGO Monitor’s objective is to end the practice used by certain self-declared ‘humanitarian NGOs’ of exploiting the label ‘universal human rights values’ to promote politically and ideologically motivated agendas.

Steinberg and NGO-Monitor are the only ones in a region crawling with confirmed liars and terrorists whose views were verboten to the AP, Friedman wrote.

The gist of Friedman’s new piece in The Atlantic is that news about Israel is largely written through a specific, largely unstated but nearly inviolable prism of “blame Israel” and ignore Arab wrongdoing.

The Arab Israeli reporter Khaled abu Toameh has been writing and speaking about the problem for at least a decade. It was also the subject of Stephanie Gutmann’s The Other War: Israelis, Palestinians and the Struggle for Media Supremacy (Encounter, 2005).

But Friedman’s Nov. 30 article is important both because it was written by someone from within the mainstream media – it doesn’t get much more mainstream than the Associated Press – and because of the startling revelation regarding the absolute ban on AP reporting including information from or about either Gerald Steinberg or the organization he heads, NGO-Monitor.

Friedman covered the 2008-09 winter conflict in Gaza dubbed “Operation Cast Lead.”  He was struck by the fact that articles condemning Israeli in the harshest terms continued to circulate months after the conflict, and based upon statements made by human rights organizations. He wrote an article about that point, but AP editors killed it.

At the time, NGO-Monitor was seeking to counter information provided by what it presented as false claims that Israel had committed “war crimes.” Friedman was unable to make use of NGO-Monitor’s information. Why? He writes:

the bureau’s explicit orders to reporters were to never quote the group or its director, an American-born professor named Gerald Steinberg. In my time as an AP writer moving through the local conflict, with its myriad lunatics, bigots, and killers, the only person I ever saw subjected to an interview ban was this professor.

Steinberg is a professor of political science at Israel’s Bar Ilan University. Educated at Cornell University, UCBerkeley and MIT, Steinberg is the founder and president of NGO-Monitor. He is the author of numerous books and dozens of other publications.

The AP is the feeder for much of the world’s media about so much that happens across the globe. This is so because AP has a phalanx of reporters in 280 locations worldwide. It operates as the news distributor of the articles written by their reporters. Those articles are then run by media sites – up to 1,400 U.S. daily newspapers – which don’t have their own reporters in those regions.

If, as Friedman charges based upon first hand observation, AP story lines are predetermined and “news” articles are created around its central, agreed-upon premise, then virtually all news about every flash point across the globe becomes suspect. It also means that the AP, at least in its Jerusalem bureau, violated its own “AP News Values and Principles.”

The AP needs to answer the specific charge of whether its Jerusalem bureau staff was barred from speaking with NGO-Monitor’s Steinberg. If such a ban was in place and unless the AP can produce a reasonable explanation, then all media outlets which continue to rely on AP services come under its same dark cloud of suspicion.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Huge Increase Reported in Anti-Israel Activity on US Campuses

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

The Anti-Defamation League issued an important report on Monday, Oct. 27, finding a dramatic increase in anti-Israel activity, compared to last year. The ADL attributes the increase to the aftermath of the 50-day Gaza war this past summer.

According to the ADL, this fall semester there have already been 75 anti-Israel events reported on U.S. college campuses. In the same period last year, there were only 35 such events.

The problem is even more alarming than the ADL’s report suggests.

It is certain there are more incidents that are either never reported or at least not reported to whatever source the ADL used for its calculations. The “full report” on the ADL website does not explain how the information was gathered or what definitions were used to determine whether certain activity would be included.

When contacted for her reaction to the ADL report, Susan Tuchman, the head of the Zionist Organization of America’s Center for Law and Justice explained that while the numbers mentioned in the ADL press release may not sound enormous, just yesterday she received “phone calls from three different students on three different campuses” with problems serious enough for them to raise with a lawyer.

Tuchman made an even more important point, as well.

 Most Jewish college students are fortunately having a positive experience on their campuses. But the ZOA is contacted so frequently by students feeling threatened and harassed on their campuses, that it’s a mistake for any of us to minimize the problem of campus anti-Semitism. What’s particularly troubling is that Jewish students are facing problems on campuses with large Jewish populations, where one would think these problems wouldn’t exist.

And the real takeaway from the ADL report, and from the ever-growing cache of reported incidents is that the wider Jewish community needs to pay attention to the problem.

Tuchman puts her finger on the problem:

If there’s a single Jewish student on any college campus in this country who feels afraid to be openly Jewish and to say that he or she loves and supports Israel, then that’s something all of us need to speak out against and demand that college administrators address. Some administrators are responding appropriately, but many aren’t.

And while this past summer’s conflict undoubtedly provided new content for the anti-Israel activities, it is not as if the anti-Israel organizations and individuals needed an excuse.

William Jacobson, clinical professor of law at Cornell Law School and founder and publisher of the excellent blog covering legal matters, especially anti-Israel activity on campuses, Legal Insurrection, made the point:

“It is no real surprise that anti-Israel groups are trying to leverage the summer’s fighting in Gaza to their advantage on campus.

“But that is just the latest excuse for what has been a long-running campus propaganda war against Israel. If it was not Gaza it would have been something else. There are groups always looking for an excuse to attack Israel on campus,” Jacobson explained.

The ADL report catalogues the myriad forms of anti-Israel activities on campuses, and those are alarming.

No longer content to simply protest or leaflet pro-Israel events, there is now a panoply of methods used to intimidate pro-Israel students on campuses.

METHODS OF CAMPUS ANTI-ISRAEL ACTIVITIES

Those campus anti-Israel activities include mock “Apartheid Walls” intended to represent Israel’s passive security barrier as a weapon of racism; mock checkpoints in which anti-Israel thugs act out the role of Israeli security forces intimidating, harassing and aggressively demanding identification from hapless and often helpless students who are forced into playing the role of meek and innocent Palestinian Arabs, and fake “die-ins.”

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Leading Middle East Journalist: New PA PM Has Resigned

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Khaled abu Toameh, who for years has been the leading journalist reporting accurately on the Palestinian Authority, its many divisions and opponents, as well as the situation in general in Israel and the wider Middle East posted on his Facebook page the bombshell that the brand new Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority, Rami Hamdallah, has resigned.

According to abu Toameh, Hamdallah was unhappy with efforts by Palestian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas to curtail Hamdallah’s powers.

The 55 year old Hamdallah was named PA Prime Minister by Abbas earlier this month, following the resignation of the west’s favorite Arab Palestinian politician, Salam Fayyad, earlier this spring. It is not yet clear whether Hamdallah’s resignation was accepted by Abbas.

How much this news – either that Hamdallah has resigned or that he is attempting to –  will affect the relentless efforts of the U.S. to force forward the “peace talks” remains to be seen.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

US Efforts to Retain PA’s Fayyad May Have Finally Torpedoed Him

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

There have been rumors for years that Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, the Western-trained and most Western-oriented member of the PA leadership, was miserable in his position and that he was going to resign.

He finally did.

At least most media outlets are reporting that Fayyad has resigned.  There are some still reporting that the resignation has not gone through, or that it was not yet tendered or some other speculation, but no one doubts that if it has not yet happened, it will happen soon.

What was the final straw?  Fayyad and acting PA leader Mahmoud Abbas often disagree about finance.  Fayyad is considerd, and for good reason, the financial brains in the PA.  He has a PhD in economics from the University of Texas, taught the subject in Jordan, and worked at the International Monetary Fund for almost a decade.  Since becoming PA prime minister in 2007, Fayyad also held the post of finance minister.

But that changed when Abbas pressured Fayyad into appointing Nabil Qassis as PA’s finance minister last year.

And then, last month, after Qassis and Fayyad disagreed over a draft budget, Fayyad accepted the resignation of Qassis. According to many reports, Abbas was furious that Fayyad accepted the resignation, and tried to rescind it.

Although a darling of the West, Fayyad has never gained traction as a favorite of the Arab Palestinians.  He ran for public office in 2006, having created a new political party called the “Third Way,” but his party came in last, winning only 2 seats.  Hamas came in first, winning 74 seats, and the party of Abbas, Fatah, came in second with 45.

And even as Prime Minister, Fayyad has had problems with his constituents.  In September a huge banner of him was pelted with shoes (a huge insult in the Arab world) during a protest of big increases in the prices of consumer goods.

But there are few with whom Fayyad’s popularity is lower than Abbas and other Fatah leaders who yearn to have their hands in the international aid piggy bank, just like their old boss Yassir Arafat did.

But for the West, Fayyad is their “Great Arab Palestinian Hope.”

So now the West, especially the U. S., is leaning on Abbas to entice Fayyad to stay just a little bit longer.  Why?  So that the U.S. has the opportunity to try out its latest peace initiative efforts.  Two months is what they are asking.  Sure, it’s reasonable to think that Secretary of State John Kerry will be able to clinch the deal that more experienced foreign policy experts and snake charmers were unable to accomplish over the course of decades.

Please.

But once again the U.S. and EU leaders have been pressuring Abbas and other Arab leaders to retain Fayyad, who is the only fig leaf of sophistication and corruption-free leadership in the PA.  Those qualities are essentials that foreign aid donors require – or should – before agreeing to send still more cash to a never-filled bank account.

But this time the efforts of the U.S. may have done more harm than good. Arab Israeli journalist Khaled abu Toameh explained that western efforts to pressure Abbas to retain Fayyad have instead worked to further discredit the prime minister in the eyes of many Arab Palestinians.

“Fayyad’s enemies have cited these efforts as ‘proof’ that he is a ‘foreign agent’ who has been imposed on the Palestinian Authority by Americans and Europeans.”

So, whether Fayyad is gone today or next week or next month, it will happen and it appears there is little the west can do to keep him in place.

Given that is the case, perhaps it will give the new U.S. peace professionals pause before they attempt to impose any major changes in an already dangerously unstable region.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Facebook Apologizes for Closing Anti PA Page

Monday, January 21st, 2013

As The Jewish Press’ Lori Lowenthal Marcus reported last week, Facebook has restored an Israeli –Arab journalist Khaled Abu Toameh for closing his Facebook account and removing posts. Now Facebook has also apologized to Abu Toameh.

Facebook last week closed for 24 hours Khaled Abu Toameh’s account for what it said was “security reasons.” The account was opened one day later with two posts critical of corruption in the Palestinian Authority and in Jordan removed. Abu Toameh had received hate mail and death threats due to the posts.

Abu Toameh wrote in a column published Friday in The Jewish Press that “Facebook’s move came at a time when Arab dictatorships in general, and the Palestinian Authority in particular, have been cracking down on Facebook users.”

Abu Toameh pointed out that some Arab countries, including the PA, have set up teams to monitor Facebook and other social media for critics.

“But the problem becomes worse when Facebook itself starts removing material that bothers dictatorships and tyrants,” he wrote. “One can only hope that the same Facebook employee who ‘accidentally’ removed the article will make the same mistake and close down accounts belonging to terrorist organizations and their leaders.”

Facebook allows Hamas leaders and other known terrorists to maintain pages.

JTA content was used in this report.

Jewish Press Staff

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/facebook-apologizes-for-closing-anti-pa-page/2013/01/21/

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