Some of America’s broadcast news media headlined with a startling question on Tuesday: “Did Israel’s prime minister deliberately mislead the United Nations about Iran’s ability to build a nuclear weapon?”
That question and similar leads and headlines on broadcast news networks in the United States are starting to look like an active, open campaign to discredit Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu — and possibly delegitimize the State of Israel — ahead of Netanyahu’s trip to Washington DC next week.
That particular question was asked on CNN in reference to an alleged disagreement between Israel’s international intelligence agency, the Mossad, and the prime minister over the estimated time necessary for Iran to be able to cross the threshold to become an international nuclear power.
It’s an old story that made the news and was put to rest in Israel literally months ago, one that was more a matter of semantics than anything else, as CNN correspondent Nick Robertson in London quickly made clear.
Robertson wisely reported on the truth of the matter, pointing out that the Mossad stated there was “no daylight between the view of Mossad and the prime minister.”
Apparently a briefing sheet distributed to reporters included an unclear point on “item 9” he said, which “someone has chosen to deliberately undermine the prime minister when he goes to the United States next week.” (ed: italics added)
Just a day earlier the same news media outright ignored a major verdict handed down in New York federal district court, ending a 10-year-long lawsuit by 10 families of victims of terror against the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestinian Authority.
The court found in favor of the plaintiffs, deciding the PLO and the PA are civilly and financially liable for the injuries and deaths of American citizens in six terror attacks between 2002 and 2004 overseas. Damages in the amount of $655.5 million were awarded to the plaintiffs, to be paid by the PA and PLO.
It was a record-making, landmark decision — and not one television news network covered the story. To its credit, the New York Times headlined the bulletin within seconds after a verdict was reached.
But where were the broadcast news networks with their “Breaking News” bulletins? They were right there when it came to questioning whether Israel’s prime minister “deliberately misled the United Nations on Iran’s ability to build a nuclear weapon.”
But some of America’s mainstream broadcast news media seem to be “missing in action” when it comes to reporting on what is really happening in the Middle East — at least when it comes to Israel, Iran and the Palestinian Authority.
Let’s hope America’s viewers are more savvy — and demanding — and switch to media where they can find more accurate coverage of events in the Middle East.Hana Levi Julian