Guardian

The Guardian’s Harriet Sherwood: Terror Propagandist.


Propaganda:

An organized programme of publicity, selected information, etc., used to propagate a doctrine, practice, etc.

The Concise Oxford Dictionary

Imagine for a moment that you know nothing whatsoever about the Middle East in general and the Arab/Israeli conflict specifically. It’s a lazy Sunday morning and you’re flicking through the headlines on the Guardian website when you come across this one:

What conclusions could you draw from this? You would immediately know that the Israelis were active and the unidentified ‘militants’ passive.  You might reasonably assume that all nine were killed in the same incident. You would certainly have no idea why the Israelis suddenly woke up one morning and decided to kill nine people who, according to this headline, appear to have done nothing in particular to warrant such a fate, apart from being ‘militants’.

Then you read the strap-line below:

So now you know that it’s a ‘tit for tat’ affair – an ‘exchange’ of presumably equal and equivalent ‘cross border attacks’, although you’re still none the wiser as to what the ‘militant’ side did, or who they are, but you do know that the Israelis carried out air strikes and might even conclude that they initiated the exchange of fire and therefore breached the ‘relative quiet’.  Without perhaps even knowing it, you are already being steered in the direction of apportioning blame for the hostilities because so far, you can only identify one side.

Then you begin to read the body of the article. You would, however, have to read right down to paragraph eight before understanding that there were existing factors which lead to the very precise air strike presented erroneously in the headline as the start of the story – a theme further developed in its first seven paragraphs.  

“The Israeli Defence Forces said that its first air strike on Saturday targeted a squad responsible for the firing of a Grad missile last Wednesday, which fell in an open area and caused no casualties nor damage. No Palestinian militant group claimed responsibility for the launch.”

So, you would now understand that something called a Grad missile was fired three days previously, but that it was a harmless incident and that nobody knows who actually fired it. In fact, it is deliberately made to sound like as innocuous an affair as is possible (considering that Sherwood is actually describing the war crime of firing of military-grade hardware at a civilian population) in order to suggest over-reaction on the Israeli side as well as casting doubt as to whether the people killed in the air strike actually had anything to do with the firing of last Wednesday’s missile. After all, according to Harriet Sherwood we only have the IDF’s word for it and she naturally does not bother to present her readers with the filmed evidence of the terror cell preparing to launch another missile on Saturday morning.

   

Continuing with her underlying theme of moral equivalence, Sherwood states that:

“This weekend’s exchange of cross-border attacks punctuated around two months of quiet since a deadly confrontation in August following a militant attack near the Israel-Egypt border in which eight Israelis were killed.”

In fact, after the August 18th terror attack in which eight Israelis were murdered, a considerable number of rockets were fired from Gaza at civilian conurbations in Israel.

August 18th: 4 rockets.

August 19th: 17 rockets and several mortars.

August 20th: 64 rockets.

August 21st: 2 mortars and 16 rockets.

August 22nd: 5 rockets.

August 24th: 20 rockets.

August 25th: 15 rockets.

August 26th: 3 rockets.

August 27th: 1 rocket.

August 28th: 2 rockets.

August 29th: 1 rocket.

August 31st: 2 rockets.  

September 5th: 1 rocket.

September 29th: 1 rocket.

September 30th: attack prevented.

October 4th: 2 rockets.

October 11th: 1 rocket.

October 26th: 1 rocket.

This is what Sherwood would have her readers accept as ‘quiet’ (although one doubts that either she or her audience would be quite so sanguine were even one Grad missile to fall on their own family home) and it does imply some sort of double standard in Sherwood’s mind as regards the conditions Israelis are expected to tolerate.  

She further tries to exonerate the ruling Hamas faction in Gaza from all responsibility by writing:

“Hamas has largely adhered to a ceasefire that came into effect at the end of a three-week war in Gaza in January 2009. However, smaller militant groups such as Islamic Jihad and the Popular Resistance Committees have continued sporadic rocket fire.”

In fact, the last twelve months of the ‘ceasefire’ actually looks like this:

In other words, Sherwood wishes to convince her readers that the Hamas regime has little or nothing to do with the fact that missiles and mortars continue to be fired upon Israeli civilian communities. She certainly wishes to absolve Hamas of all responsibility for the attacks originating in territory under its control.

The trouble with that theory of course is the fact that whilst Hamas was busy negotiating the release of 1,027 imprisoned terrorists in exchange for one kidnapped Israeli soldier, it did manage to prevent the execution of any and all rocket, mortar or missile attacks from the Gaza Strip, thus proving that it has considerably more agency than Harriet Sherwood would care to admit.

With her use of distortion and selective information Harriet Sherwood and her employers have become propagandists extraordinaire for an internationally proscribed terror organization which has for a decade been both directly and indirectly involved in missile attacks on Israeli civilians.

 One has to wonder about the roots of an ideology so strong that it can over-ride professional ethics and inspire attempts like those in this article (later slightly updated) to magic away the fact that almost one seventh of all Israeli men, women and children are currently held hostage in their homes and subject to repeated trauma as depicted in the video below. 

True ‘liberal voices’ would not engage in propaganda on behalf of those who terrorise civilians in this manner, but of course the Guardian long since sold out on liberal.

27 replies »

  1. I was wondering whether Gilad Shalit at home now with his family has any idea of how much more freely the Israeli government can now respond as the terrorists in Gaza deserve to be responded to, without wondering how it would rebound on him.

    I also wonder whether Gaza, feeling the increased freedom of the IDF to respond, considers the return of their scum to have been worth giving up their protection, that frail individual, Gilad.

  2. Lovely expose IsraeliNurse.

    Harriet is such an airhead. I don’t think that she actually realises the ‘vacant’ nature of what she puts to paper. Now Rustbridger is another kettle of fish with his 450,000 pound salary.

    Thank you for tabulating once again the ‘misrepresentation and selected omission’ of The Guardian propaganda organ.

    • Ironically, you excuse her actions by calling her an ‘airhead’. Many anti-Semites are stupid, but in most cases, they do not hate through ‘stupidity’. They hate through evil.

      And evil must be punished for the ‘moral balance’ of nature to be re-established.

  3. Go here:

    http://pcc.org.uk/

    Click on ‘making a complaint’. Stress that the article violates Article 1(i) of the Editors’ Code of Practice..

    ‘The Press must take care not to publish inaccurate, misleading or distorted information, including pictures’

    I’m about to do so.

  4. Not surprising that Harriet Sherwood would champion this Hamas murderous terror organization,whose main targets are children.

    Does Harriet Sherwood have any children???????……

    The Left have had this fawning sycophantic eternal love affair with some of the nastiest killers that walked this earth……They promote,defend,finance,
    demonstrate for them………Harriet Sherwood is true to form…………….

    Sickening………………

  5. Harriet Sherwood needs to look into a mirror,to see what sort of a person she really is.(hopefully she doesn’t crack that mirror when she looks into it)

    But then these kind of people like Harriet Sherwood are thick skinned,they have the hide of a Rhino…………….

  6. Why hasn’t Harriet Sherwood been kicked out of Israel by now.

    This woman contaminates the very air of Jerusalem……..

  7. Comment is free ……….But facts are sacred……..

    Harriet Sherwood can comment freely and her facts are anything but sacred.

    And we in turn can’t respond on CiF to Harriet Sherwood’s.Slanted one sided comments………..

  8. But don’t you know that the Jews are at fault for everything, and the Arabs and their supporters are guilty of nothing, at any time? If only those Jews and their children would just lie down and die, everything would be perfect in the world and peace and harmony would reign. The Arabs are doing their best to bring it about, but those horrible Jews keep breathing. Who do they think they are?

    What other country would have been so patient with the constant bombardment as Israel has been? A seventh of the population of the United States would be over forty million people – can you imagine any American administration putting up with this? (If you can you don’t understand America very well.)

    It is now past time for Israel to play hardball. Time to turn off the electricity and time to severely limit what the Gazans can import. And no more transfers of money to Arabs. All of the repairs and reparation for Israel and Israelis should come out of the money which the Arabs claim. And then they should be billed for the rest.

  9. IN:

    “What conclusions could you draw from this? You would immediately know that the Israelis were active and the unidentified ‘militants’ passive. ”

    Not really.
    Militants through out the world use anti aircraft missiles.
    An Airstrike can be carried out by an attacking helicopter such as a black hawk. As we know too well through past experience in somalia air strikes are not immuned to militant firing RPG’s or Land to Air missiles.

    I think you meant to write:
    You would suspect that the Israelis were active and the unidentified ‘militants’ passive.

    As for the following:

    “Imagine for a moment that you know nothing whatsoever about the Middle East in general and the Arab/Israeli conflict specifically… you’re flicking through the headlines on the Guardian website…”

    I think this scenario is too far fetched.
    Judging by the obsessive coverage of this small part of the world I’d say you must know something about or, as is usually the case, you think you know something about it…

    🙂

  10. You complain about the Guardian’s bias – only to yourself come up with a ridiculously OTT headline like the above!

    As with too many articles on this website, Israelinurse’s piece is beating its own partisan drum. This does not comprise a credible challenge to genuine complaints about Guardian bias.

    • Sez you pretzelberg. Perhaps Israelinurse’s points were too subtle for you.

      Hattie the Hen Sherwood is an out and out liar who plays fast and loose with the truth. She is also a Hamas apologist and a facilitator of Hamas propaganda which in turn means that she is complicit in their terror activities by deliberately lying about them, which in turn again makes her as much a terrorist as if she had launched rockets herself.

      Granted she is as thick as the proverbial two short planks and I agree with benorr above that it beggars belief that she is allowed to remain in Israel, but even you have to admit that most of what she writes is the product of a very fevered and immature imagination. Like Hamas, she never seems to learn from her own experiences.

      @irit, I agree with you. Hamas and its operatives were never the brightest bulbs in the chandelier,but why do they continue to persevere in activities which they know will get their people killed?

      We must assume that they want their people dead.

      • Perhaps Israelinurse’s points were too subtle for you.

        Hardly!

        Hattie the Hen Sherwood is an out and out liar who plays fast and loose with the truth. She is also a Hamas apologist and a facilitator of Hamas propaganda which in turn means that she is complicit in their terror activities by deliberately lying about them, which in turn again makes her as much a terrorist as if she had launched rockets herself.

        Complicit? A terrorist herself? Hilarious!
        At least Israelinurse’s points are more subtle than yours!

    • Pretzel is out of step with people here and at cif. He has taken a dislike to IN and on that basis condemns this article. He criticises by saying that things are ”good” or ”bad” without analysing why he thinks so, as such his comments are without merit.

      • Pretzel is out of step with people here and at cif.

        Yes, in the sense that I disagree with those posters on either website who take a black and white view and in most cases only ever criticise the other “side.”

        He has taken a dislike to IN and on that basis condemns this article.

        That is nonsense. I simply take issue with the OTT headline.

    • So tell me, dear Pretzelberg: what term would you employ to describe a professional in the information business who deliberately changes a timeline/sequence of events in order to present a specific slant on an item of news?

      Itsik – ever since (in summer 1982) English friends and teacher colleagues of my mother started making distraught phone calls because they were convinced that she was visiting me in Beirut (we lived in Be’er Sheva at the time – ok, it does sound a bit similar…) I came to the conclusion that for many the Middle East is more the Muddle East 🙂

      • I can genuinely see why you take issue with her reporting – and I myself have often criticised her!

        I simply find that calling her a “Terror Propagandist” is OTT – and compromises the credibility of both your piece and this website in general.

  11. Just reading that advertisement for Hamas again:

    The Israeli Defence Forces said that its first air strike on Saturday targeted a squad responsible for the firing of a Grad missile last Wednesday, which fell in an open area and caused no casualties nor damage. No Palestinian militant group claimed responsibility for the launch.

    “Said” is the main verb. She could have said “The Israeli Defence Forces’ first air strike on Saturday targeted…” i.e. what they did. But she can’t do that when she has terrorists to protect. And nine of their corpses, the thing she most emphasised with her Arab arithmetic. What does that make her?

    And note what a damp squib that Grad was – in her view. No need to stop that kind of thing!

    And furthermore, the IDF could have struck some harmless terrorists instead of those who fired the “harmless” Grad.

    pretzelberg, I think you should compare this idiot’s discourse to reality.
    I suspect her thought processes are stunted. At least.