In the Jan. 9th edition of the Telegraph’s new weekly newsletter, Letter from Jerusalem, their correspondent Raf Sanchez wrote that “only around 43 per cent of Israelis support a two-state solution today”. […]
If you see only an “Israeli-Palestinian” conflict, then nothing that Israelis do makes sense. (That’s why Israel’s enemies prefer this framing.) In this tightly cropped frame, Israelis are stronger, more prosperous and more numerous. The fears affecting big decisions, like what to do about the military occupation in the West Bank, seem unwarranted if Israel is indeed the far more powerful party.
Though British media outlets covering the region subject nearly every Israeli moral failure to something akin to a forensic examination, Palestinians (as we’ve documented continually) are usually spared this level of scrutiny – representing a pattern of double standards that egregiously skew reports about the conflict.
We’ve seen a lot of misleading and false charges against Israel in the British media over the years, but an article on Friday at the Independent promotes what’s truly one of the more bizarre allegations we’ve come across, in accusing the state of “gastronomic theft” for simply noting that shawarma is a popular Israeli street food.
Contrary to the Financial Times claim, it was Palestinian leaders who, acting on their own free will, independent of what Netanayhu or Begin did or didn’t do, “denied Palestinians a country to call their own” – a simple historical fact that’s continually obfuscated in British media reports about the conflict.
So, when Angela Davis had the opportunity to truly ‘speak truth to power’ on behalf of actual political prisoners in a totalitarian regime, she failed to do so. Yet, decades later, she ardently champions for the release of Palestinian terrorists convicted for acts of violence against citizens of a democratic state – and is of course bestowed the moral badge of “civil rights activist” by the Guardian for doing so.
The Guardian’s insistence that one or two wealthy Jews are behind Trump’s pro-Israel policies is facile and myopic at best, and, at worst, promotes exactly the kind of antisemitic dog whistles about the ‘injurious’ influence of Jewish power that, when directed at George Soros, their editors and contributors have ardently denounced.
A Dec. 20th op-ed at the Independent by Palestinian activist Abdallah Abu Rahmah included the erroneous claim that a UN report found Israel guilty of apartheid.
According to Sky News Arabia, even Arab citizens of Israel are being “occupied”. This represents the adoption of a radical terminology associated with the positions of terrorist groups like Hamas and Hezbollah, which views any Jewish presence in the region as an illegal “occupation”.
Our UK Media Watch family just lost a dear friend. Garry Grolman, who succumbed to cancer earlier in the week in Tel Aviv at the age of 72, was a tireless defender of Israel and one of the founding volunteers of the group (CiF Watch) formed in 2009 that would become – along with BBC Watch – part of CAMERA’s UK brand.
Once again, we see how the Guardian seems to be institutionally incapable of holding Palestinian leadership even partly responsible for the misery in Gaza. It’s a pattern of coverage informed by an ideologically-driven propensity to deny Palestinians agency: the seeming belief that, as individuals, they lack the capacity to act independently of Israel and make choices of their own free will.
Narrowing down an entire year of Guardian anti-Israel reporting to the five most egregious examples is not an easy task, but, as a public service to our loyal readers, here are a few errors and lies by their contributors and reporters in 2018 which especially stand out.
Palestinians, it seems, are not quite the peace and social justice warriors of media lore. They are arguably ‘far-right’, and certainly far from ‘woke’.
Such holiday trickery reminds us that though events in the region may change from year to year, the British media’s annual tradition of blaming Israel for ruining ‘Christmas in Palestine’ continues, unimpeded by facts, statistics or even the most painfully obvious observations.
In recent years, CAMERA analysts have noted that media coverage of Beitar is often obsessive, myopic and plagued by double-standards. We’ve noted that ethnic and religious tensions in football teams’ hiring practices, and racism by some fans, is not at all a phenomenon that’s at all unique to Israel. Moreover, we’ve criticised such tendentious media reports which misleadingly draw broad conclusions about Israeli society based on the behavior of one team and some of their fans behavior.
Here’s the headline of a Dec. 18th article at The Independent: The claim that a Texas woman was forced to sign a “pro-Israel pledge” is repeated in the opening paragraph of the […]
On Dec. 6, we tweeted a journalist at The Independent about a story which falsely suggested that Israel occupied all of Lebanon from the early 80s to 2000.
This isn’t merely one poorly written headline. It represent an institutional pattern of reporting informed by a pro-Palestinian sympathy so pronounced that it often erases the most intuitive moral distinction between victim and perpetrator.
Most years around this time, the British media resurrects some variation of the desired Palestinian narrative on Israel’s putative role ruining Christmas in Bethlehem, and this year is no different, with the opening salvo coming from Raf Sanchez at the Telegraph.
Fisk falsely suggests that Israel intentionally murders Palestinian journalists to prevent them from reporting the truth about Gaza. In fact, the IDF operates with the knowledge that Palestinian terrorists have, at times, posed as journalists in order to attack Israelis, and that this tactic was used frequently by Hamas during Operation Protective Edge – an intentional blurring of civilians with combatants that Israeli soldiers protecting the border must carefully navigate during the weekly riots.
A Financial Times article (Israel’s tech expansion stokes glaring inequality in Tel Aviv, Dec. 11) echoes a common MSM narrative about the putative relationship between wealth and poverty in Israel, one that doesn’t appear […]
Here’s UK Media Watch’s latest post documenting the fact that (despite the disproportionate coverage given to BDS by the media) the campaign to economically and politically isolate Israel continues to fail miserably.
CST’s recently released report, Antisemitic Discourse in Britain 2017, is a comprehensive review of antisemitic rhetoric in the mainstream media, social media, politics and public debate in the UK last year. Its section on antisemitism in the mainstream media included an issue first flagged by UK Media Watch:
Tlaib’s evocation of race and Jim Crow into the Israeli-Palestinian debate is clearly not motivated by the desire to build bridges, promote social justice or achieve a lasting peace, but, rather, represents a cynical misappropriation of the US Civil Rights Movement to demonise Israel and undermine its very legitimacy as a state.
On Nov. 14th we posted about a piece at The Independent by Sarah Helm, who, as we’ve noted, is one of the more biased reporters we’ve come across in years. Within Helm’s […]
Anti-Israel propagandists-cum-journalists from around the world attended a “journalism” conference in Turkey last month designed to help participants develop skills to more effectively push the Palestinian narrative and delegitimise Israel in the international media. Among the “journalists” who attended was the Guardian’s veteran columnist Jonathan Steele.
Marc Lamont Hill is not merely a pro-Palestinian ‘activist’ who criticises Israel and calls for a ‘free Palestine’. He’s a radical anti-Israel propagandist who’s repeatedly justified Palestinian terror, rejected Israel’s continued existence of a Jewish state and expressed admiration for one of the more infamous disseminators of antisemitic hate.
Jerusalem correspondent Oliver Holmes has offered something akin to a master class in how the Guardian – by use of selective, distorted and at times outright false information – skews what are ostensibly ‘straight news stories’ to promote the pro-Palestinian agenda and paint Israel in the worst possible light.
A Nov. 26 story in the Scotland Herald maintained that the paper’s Jerusalem correspondent interview with Israeli Deputy Minister Michael Oren took place at the Knesset – in Jerusalem.
The BBC continues to portray violent rioting as ‘protests’.
BBC Watch secures a correction to an inaccurate claim made in three BBC radio programmes.
The BBC continues to fail to provide audiences with the full range of information necessary for understanding of the Airbnb story.
A Guardian article, about warnings by Malaysian Prime Minister, Mahatir Mohamad, that Australia’s decision to consider moving its embassy to Jerusalem said about the 92-year old leader that he’s known for his outspokenness. However, what the Guardian didn’t tell you is that he’s also well known for expressing classic antisemitic rhetoric.
We listened to the NY Times podcast the Guardian contributor is likely referencing, and, contrary to his claim, the NY Times journalist never makes anything resembling the claim that Netanyahu’s “racial policies” have made Israel a “model” for the alt-right on how to construct an “ethno-state”.
Helm concludes by expressing exasperation at the most “disturbing” part of all of this – how the “outside world has always been to buy into [Israeli] version of events”, showing that Helm inhabits a truly fantastical world – an alternative reality someplace far, far away where Israeli ‘hasbara’ has an iron grip on the world, and is therefore subjected to little if any real criticism by the media and international bodies.
Regardless of whether Netanyahu’s comparison between Hamas and ISIS is accurate, the point is that Hamas – like other Islamist extremist movements – can not be placated in the long-term by Western political concessions. The antisemitic extremist group’s fundamental grievance isn’t an economic one, but, rather, the continued existence of a Jewish state – and no journalist covering the region can possibly report accurately on the conflict if they fail to comprehend this most basic truth.
Sarah Helm is not a journalist. She’s more akin to a pro-Palestinian activist whose visceral contempt for Israel at times bleeds off the page, and has included tweets expressing support for Hamas violence and even justifying antisemitism.
We can only hope that, during subsequent interviews with Tlaib, journalists hold her accountable and critically scrutinise her radical positions – such as her apparent opposition to a Jewish state within any borders – and the uninformed, grossly ahistorical political underpinnings which inspire these views.
Contrary to claims by Sky News Arabia that the Jordan-Israeli peace agreement grants Jordanian custody over Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, the text of the agreement makes clear that Jordan’s special role only involves Muslim shrines in the city.
Such shoddy journalism again indicates that Sky News Arabia appears more interested in joining its brethren in the Arab media by parroting anti-Israel propaganda than in engaging in well-sourced, professional reporting – a disregard for basic journalistic standards that also casts a shadow on its London-based parent
The Guardian doesn’t attempt to explain how Israel, where, per Freedom House, “women generally enjoy full political rights in law and in practice” can “exacerbate existing gender inequalities” in Hamas-run Gaza or Palestinian controlled cities in the West Bank. Nor do they offer a clue as to how the IDF can be blamed for Palestinian domestic violence – a bizarre charge leveled by the Guardian on at least two previous occasions.
These counterintuitive findings offer a rare honest glimpse into what Palestinians living under Hamas’s despotic rule in Gaza actually believe, providing a “compelling corrective” to an entrenched media echo-chamber which continues to mislead readers about the dynamics which represent the true root causes of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
For the 5th time in less than a year, UK Media Watch has prompted a correction in the British media to the false claim that there are “settler-only roads” in the West Bank. The latest such claim was in an op-ed at the Independent by Sophia Brown, a London-based academic.
Do Israeli police raid and break up dance parties in PA controlled Palestinian cities in the West Bank? That’s what an interview in the The Observer (sister site of the Guardian) with Palestinian rapper Muqata’a, focusing on Ramallah’s dance culture, initially claimed, before a tweet by UKMW pointing out that this was erroneous.
On Oct. 7th, we complained to Daily Express editors about an article that misleadingly used Tel Aviv as a synonym for Israel’s capital twice in the same article. It took nearly two weeks, but editors upheld our complaint and corrected the two sentences.
the Guardian cartoonist wasn’t content with merely going after the prime minister. Rather, he deemed it necessary to demonise Australian Jews who Morrison was presumably appealing to in suggesting the embassy be moved, labeling them ‘apartheid enthusiasts’ putatively indifferent to ‘Palestinian children who die after falling on IDF bullets’, a smear – suggesting the Israeli army targets kids – the cartoonist employed previously in a Guardian cartoon during the 2014 War.
We sent a complaint to Times of London editors arguing that whilst it’s perfectly fair to note that a significant minority of the residents of the Australian voting district are Jewish, their reference to the wealth of the Jewish residents seemed gratuitous and, though unintended, evoked toxic tropes about the influence of ‘Jewish money’ on democratic politics.
UK Media Watch prompted two corrections recently. At the Indy, we convinced editors to revise a sentence which misleadingly framed an accusation that settlers killed a Palestinian woman as if it were a fact, rather than just a claim. At the Telegraph, we prompted a correction to a sentence which claimed that the US was the only country to move its embassy to Jerusalem, neglecting to note that Guatemala also recently moved its embassy to the Israeli capital.
If Lara Alqasem led a radical-right group, instead of radical-left SJP, would the media have covered her detention?
If Lara Alqasaem had been in a leadership position with a right-wing extremist group, instead of a pro-Palestinian extremist group, the media wouldn’t have batted an eye, and Alqasaem wouldn’t represent a political cause among ‘human rights’ activists.
Our pinned tweet highlights the fact that Times of London – though one of the fairer British media outlets – continues to erroneously suggest that Tel Aviv is Israel’s capital.