While reasonable people can, of course, disagree over the merits of Chuck Hagel’s nomination for US Defense Secretary, a Guardian headline used for Chris McGreal’s latest story (Jan. 7) on the row blatantly distorts a relevant quote by the Nebraska Senator in a manner which has the effect of misleading readers.
Here’s the quote by Hagel which some opponents of his nomination have cited as cause for concern.
“The Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people up here [in Washington, DC].”
Interestingly, given his own history of using language which evokes Judeophobic stereotypes, McGreal contextualizes the quote quite fairly – and even acknowledges the danger of employing antisemitic rhetoric which warns of the danger posed by Jewish power.
“Hagel later apologised for the use of the term “Jewish lobby” [when he spoke of the influence of the lobby on Congress] saying he should have said “pro-Israel lobby”, an issue of particular sensitivity because it touches on antisemitic tropes about Jewish control, but also because it is inaccurate, given the wider support for Israel among Americans, notably Christian evangelicals.”
In addition, the actual quote by Hagel is accurately cited in McGreal’s report.
However, here’s the Guardian headline for McGreal’s report:
No, it’s clearly not antisemitic to merely acknowledge that the pro-Israel lobby has a powerful voice.
However, that’s not what Hagel said.
A Guardian editor used inverted quotes in order to paraphrase the senator’s words in a manner which make them more palatable and less offensive.
This is not journalism but, rather, advocacy: another example of a paper which continually distorts information to suit a particular ideological agenda.
- Why any Israeli can be murdered by Palestinian terrorists, as explained by Chris McGreal (cifwatch.com)
- “Israel-firsters”, “traitors” and other epithets hurled at Chuck Hagel’s critics by Guardian readers (cifwatch.com)
- A Guardian journalist conjures Israeli “snipers with children in their sights” (cifwatch.com)
- The Guardian’s lethal narrative about snipers who murder innocent children. (cifwatch.com)
- US Congressional resolution supporting Israel makes Glenn Greenwald’s head explode (cifwatch.com)
- Following our post, Guardian corrects Chris McGreal story on footballers’ petition against Israel (cifwatch.com)