web analytics
April 19, 2014 / 19 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘reporting’

Pallywood: Making News, Rather than Just Reporting it

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

In recent years there have been too many reports of Arab terror attacks and riots instigated/directed/inspired by journalists.  They get paid to show action, and the Arabs love to cooperate.  Having an audience well equipped with cameras to record Israeli citizens and IDF soldiers injured and cowering is great encouragement for them.

algemeiner.com recently published a video which shows how this is done.

You can easily see how the journalists are well-dressed/equipped for the occasion with flak jackets, helmets etc.

This reminds me of a BBC Radio report I heard over twenty years ago, when the Intifada was a new Arab term for attacking Jews.   I don’t number them since I’ve never heard of an official end.  It comes and goes in waves but never totally stops.  In that report, the radio journalist made it clear that he was crouched together with the attacking Arabs as they threw rocks and bricks at Israelis. You could hear the noises and his uncontrolled excitement. The IDF began responding with teargas, and the journalist told us how the Arabs had come equipped with cloths and remedies to protect their eyes and lungs from it.  He very emotionally described how parents comforted their children and covered their eyes to protect them.  It was 100 precent clear that the journalist was totally identified with the Arab attackers and considered this a great adventure for himself.

Unfortunately, not only foreign journalists identify with the Arabs who attack Israel, so do Israeli journalists, politicians and academics. They consider themselves “post-Zionists.”  But to tell you the truth, there has always been Zionist, mostly Left-Labor who considered it important to give the Arabs their own country next to the State of Israel, even before the establishment of the state.  It’s not enough that the British imported the Hashemites and gave them Transjordan to rule, but the United Nations Partition Plan, approved by David Ben-Gurion’s followers, allocated most of what was left of the British Mandate of Palestine to the Arabs.

The World expected the Arabs to defeat us in 1948 and at best we’d be governed by a continuation of the Mandate.  Luckily God had other plans.

There’s nothing new in journalists trying to make news; they just can’t make facts out of lies.

Visit Shiloh Musings.

In Reporting Israeli Strike, the Guardian Adopts Arab Narrative

Sunday, May 12th, 2013

Check out the front page of last Monday’s (May 6th, 2013) edition of the Guardian and your hair will be blown back by this scorching headline: “Syria Accuses Israel of Declaring War.” The fact that the Guardian chose to legitimize the Syrian narrative is a relatively minor nuisance in an article that effectively intertwines one nation’s right to self-defense with the looming threat of a wider regional conflict.

The article, written by Julian Borger and Joel Greenberg, does not deny the Israeli version of events leading up to the recent air strikes against military targets around Damascus. Rather, and much more insidiously, the piece draws an incongruous parallel between terrorism’s enablers and the chief regional check against its expansion.

First, the Guardian quotes an Iranian army ground forces commander as saying that, “Iran was ready to train the Syrian army if necessary.” Next, the winds of war are further fanned with this bit of sabre rattling, courtesy of the office of the Egyptian president, Mohamed Morsi, which denounced the attack, declaring it illegal and a threat to “security and stability in the region.” Meanwhile, Nabil Elaraby, chief of the Arab League, appealed to the U.N. Security Council to “move immediately to stop the Israeli aggressions on Syria.”

The Guardian fails to frame the most recent conflagration between Israel and the forces of terrorism with appropriate historical context, therefore distorting coverage enough to publish inaccurate information. Exhibit A: whilst Hizballah is mentioned several times, no space is dedicated to defining what Hizballah is: an extremist Shiite Muslim group that receives financial and political support from Iran and Syria. Borger and Greenberg also neglect to note that the governments of the U.S., Netherlands, Bahrain, France, U.K., Australia and Canada classify Hizballah as a terrorist organization.

Next, the Guardian piece spends a good couple of paragraphs describing the effects of Israel’s unleashed war machine on the average Syrian citizen:

“Mohammed Saeed, another activist who lives in the Damascus suburb of Douma, said: ‘The explosions were so strong that earth shook under us.’  He said the smell of the fire caused by the air raid near Qasioun was detectable kilometers away.”

Heart-wrenching. However, the Guardian simply ignores recent history by not including any background as to what precipitated the Second Lebanon War, which is important if readers are to gain a comprehensive understanding as to the geo-political forces currently at play.

Here’s a dose of inconvenient reality to consider: on July 12th, 2006, the Second Lebanon War began when Hizballah terrorists opened fire with rockets on the Israeli border towns of Zar’it and Shtula, wounding several civilians. This was a diversion for an anti-tank missile attack on two armored Humvees patrolling the Israeli side of the border fence. The purpose of the attack was to capture Israelis who could be used in a prisoner exchange barter.

Under cover of this diversionary shelling, two IDF (Israel Defense Forces) patrol vehicles were ambushed. Three soldiers were killed in this attack, two were hurt and two others – Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev – were taken prisoners.

Following the kidnapping, IDF forces opened a massive attack on Hizballah posts near the border. An armored force entered Lebanese territory seeking to retrieve the abducted soldiers, but a short time later it hit a mine and its four crew members were killed. Attempts to extricate the tank back to Israel ended with another soldier dead.

Shortly after the kidnapping, the Israeli Government unanimously authorized a military operation against Hizballah forces in Lebanon.

Following a 33-day war, Israel agreed to abide by the terms of United Nations’ Security Council resolution 1701 for an armistice between it and Hizballah. The resolution called for “a complete halt of acts of aggression, and especially those committed by Hizballah and the military actions on behalf of Israel.”

Furthermore, Lebanon was asked to implement the already existing resolution 1559 dealing with disarmament of armed militias – first among them being Hizballah.

It is the article’s historical myopia that makes it possible for the Guardian to downplay the moral imperative behind the recent Israeli military strike and to frame the story as a no-win situation pitting one country’s security against larger regional stability.

And Israel’s right as a sovereign nation to defend its citizens is thus neatly nullified.

Fortunately for Israel, it has the United Nations as an ally. Article 51 of the U.N. Charter states the following: 

Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of collective or individual self-defense if an armed attack occurs against a member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to maintain international peace and security…

Good, worthy journalism is based on journalistic objectivity, which has been defined as a “genuine effort to be an honest broker when it comes to news. That means playing it straight without favouring one side when the facts are in dispute, regardless of your own views and preferences.”

When a front page news story about Israel and Hizballah omits both the background and the staggering results of the previous conflict between these two regional players – 4,000 rockets fired upon northern Israeli cities, 164 Israeli citizens (119 soldiers and 45 civilians) killed and hundreds injured – one is compelled to question the qualifications of the journalists on duty to deliver just the facts and allow their readership to draw its own conclusions.

Going forward, Julian Borger and Joel Greenberg would be well advised to keep their opinions firmly within the confines of the Guardian’s op-ed page.

Visit CifWatch.

Does the BBC’s New Editor’s Jewishness Matter?

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Lisa O’Carroll’s April 16 story in the Guardian reports on the appointment of James Harding (former Times editor) as the BBC’s new director of news and current affairs.

O’Carroll’s report includes the following passages:

Some of the Times’s anti-BBC leader columns may also come back to haunt Harding in his new job. In 2010, when hostilities between Murdoch and the BBC were at their height over the News Corporation’s bid to take over BSkyB, Harding ran an editorial accusing the corporation’s then director general Mark Thompson of “seeking to gain commercial advantages in league with News Corp’s rivals”.

Harding, who is Jewish, will also have to leave behind the pro-Israeli line of the Times. In a debate at the Jewish Community Centre For London in 2011, Harding said ”I am pro-Israel” and that in reporting on the Middle East, “I haven’t found it too hard” because “the Times has been pro-Israel for a long time”. However, he also stressed the need for balanced news reporting and said he was also in favour of a Palestinian state.

The Editor’s Code of Practice (published by the Press Complaints Commission, the ‘independent’ regulatory body in the UK) which all editors and publishers in the UK are required to abide by, contains the following warning in their section on ‘discrimination’:

Details of an individual’s race, colour, religion, sexual orientation, physical or mental illness or disability must be avoided unless genuinely relevant to the story.

Whilst O’Carroll’s contention that Harding will have to leave his “pro-Israeli line” behind now that he’s been appointed news director of the BBC is quite interesting in the context of the Beeb’s coverage of Israel and the Middle East, two particular questions come to mind:

Does O’Carroll’s decision to note that Harding is Jewish in the particular passage cited indicate she has already concluded that his religious affiliation is relevant in that it explains his ‘pro-Israeli’ views?

If that is not what O’Carroll is suggesting, in what other way, per the language in the PCC Editor’s Code, is Harding’s religion relevant to a story about his new position at the BBC?

Visit CifWatch.

Three Mistakes that Can Get You in Big Trouble

Sunday, March 31st, 2013

Filing taxes is complicated. The forms aren’t particularly user friendly, and if you’re not quite sure what you’re doing you can end up making quite a few errors. The problem with errors on tax forms is that they can be very costly. For people who have multiple citizenships and residences (think olim or folks who spend a portion of the year living in Israel), the challenges of tax reporting are even more complicated.

I spoke with international tax lawyer Dave Wolf (and fellow contributor to a book on tax guidelines for American expatriates) and asked him, “What’s the worst mistake you’ve seen an expat make?”

He said: “The biggest mistake that I’ve seen expats make is believing that once they move out of America, they no longer have to report their worldwide income or report the existence of foreign bank accounts or companies.” Indeed, when it comes to the IRS, out of sight is not out of mind. It’s also important to note that if you have American citizenship through a parent or grandparent, even if you’ve never lived in America and English isn’t your mother tongue, you’re still obliged to report to the American tax authorities.

Mistake #2

Another common blunder that Dave mentioned was that people look for investment opportunities without taking into consideration the U.S. tax code. Specifically, complicated U.S. tax laws basically prevent American taxpayers from investing in overseas mutual funds. The IRS considers those investments “PFICs,” (passive foreign investment companies), and most Americans who understand how they work would not want to get involved with them or offshore mutual funds. When trying to invest smartly, lack of knowledge of international tax consequences can cost you a lot of money.

Final Mistake

The third blunder people make, Dave said, is “They either go to the wrong adviser, one who has no overseas experience, or they just don’t get any professional help at all.” I asked how you can avoid these mistakes. He said, “Make sure to consult with your tax lawyer, accountant, and/or investment manager before you leave the States to avoid any adverse tax consequences of investing or moving money overseas.” Sadly, many people overlook this seemingly small detail before making what could be one of the biggest financial decisions of their lives.

Find out more about what Dave has to say about avoiding making major tax mistakes by reading The Expatriate Guide to Managing Money and Taxes. For Jewish Press readers, get half off the regular price of the book by using the discount code JPRESS. Go to www.ExpatGuideToMoney.com and order now. The discount will expire on tax day, April 15th.

Knowledge is power, and reading this easy-to-follow guide for U.S. expats you can stay in full compliance with the law.

If You Talk to Them, What Would You Say?

Monday, December 17th, 2012

It’s an interesting question my mother asked me.

An international media organization has contacted me – one which no one would ever accuse them of being pro-Israel; few would even really consider them balanced when it comes to coverage of the Middle East. They want to ask me about my life, my blog, where I live, and what I think. They want me to talk about E1 – not that that topic would take long… hill, no building, no disruption, next…

I’ve seen media twist words before – I’m not naive. I know the way the game is played. I’ve seen instances where reporters leave out parts of a statement to make it seem so different than what was intended. Should I open myself up to having my words distorted, to allowing them to take the beauty of where I live and turn it into something wrong, ugly, even stolen?

Years ago, I took a reporter around Maale Adumim and then to the Jewish communities in Gaza. She had once worked for this very media organization now asking to interview me. I took her to the home of a woman who has two children who were injured in terror attacks. The reporter didn’t ask about how her children were coping with their injuries and their trauma…she asked how it felt to live in a house that was stolen?

No, this woman didn’t live in a house that was stolen, not even on land that was occupied. She moved here more than 20 years ago and bought an apartment. She made it a home and raised her children here. There was so much she could have spoken about, but that first question was so telling. It was phrased with cruelty and ignorance, with the reporter’s agenda clear to all.

Before we left the city, I was already regretting my decision to take her to Gaza. I wanted to show her the amazing things Israel does. In Maale Adumim, I took her to a beautiful new children’s park nearby – built in sections so that children of varying ages can play, so many safety issues addressed – soft ground under climbing equipment, things that could withstand the sun, railings and fences and benches for the parents to sit and watch. Surrounded by gardens and paths where it is pleasant to walk, it’s a gathering place all week long for so many.

She didn’t compliment the park’s planning  - she asked why Palestinians can’t come there. She asked why the Palestinians don’t have similar parks in THEIR neighborhoods in a tone that made it clear she blamed us, that it was OUR responsibility to build for them the things they didn’t bother building for themselves. I told her she should ask them. The money we pay in taxes goes to building parks here – where does the money go in Palestinian areas, and what happens to the parks and schools we do build in their areas?

In Gaza, I took her to several families – to a man who lost an arm in one war and then several fingers on his remaining hand when he was attacked years later by a terrorist. He told her of the body of a young mother that he found in a car on the side of the road – and how the terrorists had sat in waiting. The dead woman was bait for whatever target came next. They relied on the goodness and caring of the next person to stop and see if she needed help. He was badly wounded, saved more by a malfunctioning grenade than the soldiers who followed and eliminated the terrorist.

I took her to the greenhouses to show her the incredible farms and produce and to meet other people and see other places. And finally, I took her to the home of a family who had lost a son in war and was about to not only lose their home but would be faced with digging up their son’s grave and having it moved rather than leaving it to be desecrated in Gaza. It was the one time I begged her not to ask anything about politics, “please, don’t do that to them – don’t ask them about stolen land and how it feels to lose their home…” She was very good, actually, and I appreciated that she simply asked them to tell her about their son.

Guardian Newspaper Bans Pro-Israel Watchdog from Site

Sunday, December 16th, 2012

The British newspaper The Guardian has banned Adam Levick, the managing editor, of the pro-Israel media watchdog, CiFWatch, from its website, deleting all prior comments on Guardian articles and disabling his ability to contribute opinion pieces to the site and further comments.

CiFWatch monitors the Guardian’s coverage of Israel and is affiliated with the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America. “CiF” stands for “Comment is Free” the opinion section of the Guardian where anti-Israel articles often appear.

In a posting on the CiFWatch website, Levick said that he had been a contributor to the Comment is Free section of the Guardian’s website for years and that his user account, and all prior comments on Guardian articles – many of which pointed out anti-Israel bias –  was terminated without any explanation.

Levick’s work at CiFWatch has led in the past to corrections of many Guardian articles.

Levick noted that “occasionally I sensed that I may have annoyed the CiF moderators by violating the Guardian Prime Directive: Thou shall not write the name ‘CiF Watch’ or link to it in any way…”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/guardian-newspaper-bans-pro-israel-watchdog-from-site/2012/12/16/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: