American Media Bias and Lying Exposed:
On Reporting of Latest Israeli-Palestinian Violence
Israel's culpability in the violence against Palestinians went un-reported, under-reported or skewed by the US mainstream media, to place the blame solely on Palestinian militant groups.
The following article was published on June 12, 2003, on the Independent Media TV website.
It is entitled "Sharon Does Not Want Peace", by Andrew Limburg
Here is an excerpt of the Andrew Limburg's article:
In the recent violence a lot of blame has been given to Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Al-Aqsa, for their attack against a military post in internationally recognized Palestinian territory that killed 4 Israeli soldiers.
What one would gather from the American media is that these were the first attacks since the implementation of the "Road Map". This is not true.
Before wading through the current media lies and deceit, it's important give some background to the situation.
(A)Prime Minister Sharon and Israeli Politics
The United Nations, and another article in Independent Media give a good basic overview.
It is important to understand...why Sharon cannot move along the path of the "Road Map".
Sharon's Likud (Conservative) party did not garner enough seats in the last elections to independently vote in a Prime Minister. The Likud Party did win a larger number of seats in their "house of representatives" then any other party. For Sharon to be Prime Minister the Likud Party had to make a coalition with other parties. The liberal party refused to build a coalition with the Likud party because the Likud party refused to stop building illegal settlements in the territory stolen in the 1967 war.
The Likud party was then forced to form a coalition with the right-wing extremists in the Israeli government.
The right-wing extremist parties are opposed to removing any the of settlements in any circumstance, and are also opposed the Palestinians ever having a state of their own in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
There is NO way Sharon can, under any circumstances, implement the "Road Map". If he does, his coalition will fall apart, he will no longer be Prime Minister, and new elections will have to take place.
On May 26th, 2003, The Guardian reported "...almost half the cabinet voted against the plan or abstained, even though they were asked only to approve 'steps required by the road map' rather than endorsing the document itself or the final goal of a Palestinian state."
Sharon, while talking peace on one hand stating that he would dismantle "unauthorized" settlements, on the other hand he stated that he would continue to expand existing settlements.
On May 27th, 2003, in The Guardian, Sharon said, "[The road map] certainly allows the unlimited building for your children and grandchildren, and I hope even for your great-grandchildren". In reality, the road map says that Israel must dismantle ALL settlements created since 2001 just to implement the first stage of the map.
Of the 15 so-called "unauthorized" settlements that Israel has agreed to dismantle, at least 10 of them were abandoned, and at least one (population of 30) of the others sparingly populated.
(B)The Deception in the US Media.
The attacks from Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Al-Aqsa were NOT the first attacks since the beginning of the "Road Map".
On May 27th, 2003, the Associated Press reported the following deaths , but the story was hardly picked up.
"Israeli troops shot and killed a 16-year-old Palestinian boy and critically injured two children, ages 7 and 9, during conflicts in the West Bank that erupted Tuesday as Israeli and Palestinian leaders moved toward talks on a new Mideast peace plan."
"In a village near the West Bank city of Nablus on Tuesday, Israeli troops opened fire on youths throwing stones, hitting a 9-year-old Palestinian boy in the head and critically wounding him (he later died), and hitting two 12-year-old boys in the legs, lightly wounding them, Palestinian hospital officials said."
"Israeli troops killed a Palestinian teenager Monday and another surrendered after infiltrating from Gaza, the military said. They were unarmed and apparently looking for work. In a village near the West Bank town of Qalqiliya, an 11-year-old Palestinian boy was killed during an exchange of gunfire."
"Also Monday, Israeli soldiers fired on four diplomatic vehicles in the northern Gaza town of Beit Hanoun, diplomats said. There were no injuries from the incident. Peter Lundberg, an official from the Swedish Consulate in Jerusalem, said that two bullets hit the windshield of the consulate's armored car, and that small-arms fire also was directed at other cars from Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark and the European Union."
All of these attacks on Palestinians were in Palestinian territory, and less then 2 days AFTER Israel conditionally accepted the road map.
Then on June 5th, 2003, The Guardian reported on other Israeli incursion.
"As George Bush talked about peace with the Israeli and Palestinian prime ministers, Israeli soldiers were raiding the refugee camp of Balata and the city of Nablus for the third day running."
"The seven-year-old girl was the latest casualty in Balata. According to the Red Crescent, some 50 people have been treated for bullet and shrapnel wounds in two days. Many in the West Bank were looking at their television in astonishment as their prime minister, Mahmoud Abbas, met his Israeli counterpart, Ariel Sharon, and President Bush in the Red Sea resort of Aqaba. They felt the rhetoric was from another planet."
All of this violence DURING the period of conditional acceptence of the road map by the Israelis.
There had NOT been one attack by the Palestinians since before May 25th, 2003 when the Israeli government accepted the peace plan.
Then talks between the new prime minister of the Palestinians and Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Al-Aqsa broke down.
Perhaps it was because Sharon didn't appear to be serious. Consider this statement from Sharon from The Guardian on June 4th, 2003,
Let me translate that, "we will think about the possibility of thinking about, a Palestinian State with no borders, maybe".
Then the joint attack on the Israeli military post, then the outrageous assassination attempt of the Hamas spokesperson, then the horrible suicide bus bombing, etc... .
There are 3 problems with all of this.
(1) Israel uses collective punishment against all Palestinians for the horrible acts of a few. The Israelis destroy the homes of the families of the suicide bombers and sometimes even crush family members if they don't get out in time. They arrest relatives, they attack using missiles instead of courts and trials to kill those who they think are guilty and also kill innocent people who are unfortunately nearby during the missile attacks. They virtually imprison whole towns because of the acts of a few. Add to this the fact the Israel controls the water, electricity, importing of food, the airports, and virtually every basic need of the Palestinian people, and that just breeds more violence.
The international community has, since 1967, told Israel they need to get out of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Their presence is illegal, the settlements created are illegal.
(2) The other problem is equal responsibility. Both sides are committing terrorism. Both sides are committing atrocious attacks where civilians are being killed. The elderly, children, and woman make up more than half of the over 2000 Palestinian deaths since September of 2000. Palestinian terrorists attack civilians the majority of the time.
(3) Since it is not accurately reported on in the American media, it gives the impression that the Palestinians don't want peace. When in fact, there are groups of people on both the Israeli side and the Palestinian side who do not want peace. Including Ariel Sharon. Even some in his own government are questioning if Sharon wants peace.
The majority of Israelis and Palestinians want peace. The majority of Israelis and Palestinians believe the great majority of the settlements should be dismantled.
The majority of Israelis and Palestinians believe the only solution to the problem is an independent Palestinian State next to an independent Israeli State.
Now if they could only convince Ariel Sharon.
Friday, June 13, 2003
American Media Bias and Lying Exposed: