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.
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.
The myth that there are ‘Jews-only’ or ‘settler-only’ roads in the West Bank has been debunked numerous times over the years by CAMERA and its affiliates – prompting corrections at news sites such as CNN, Associated Press, Washington Post, The Economist, The Financial Times and The Telegraph.
Following our tweet, we contacted Daily Mail editors, who similarly amended the quote to remove the “settlers-only” roads claim.
In short, Zonshein’s op-ed on the planned eviction of illegal Bedouin encampments employ all the tools within the Guardian’s delegitimisation playbook: lies, half truths, the use of hyperbolic language and completely unsubstantiated accusations of criminality to characterize Israeli policy.
Though the quote is still highly problematic, we’re glad that we were again successful in convincing editors that such propaganda about ‘racist roads’, which of course serve to amplify dishonest ‘Apartheid Israel’ smears, are completely counter-factual.
On April 8th 2018, Sky News Arabia published an item with the headline: “A Palestinian injured by a settler in the West Bank”. Camera-Arabic researchers noticed that the headline was inaccurate, as it creates the impression that the injured Palestinian was an innocent man who was shot by a settler without justification.
Contrary to Robert Fisk’s claim, Yasser Arafat was offered was a contiguous state encompassing Gaza, east Jerusalem and considerably more than 90 percent of the West Bank. And, it’s not the “American media” making this “claim”. It’s three of the principle players during negotiations – Bill Clinton, his chief peace negotiator Dennis Ross and Martin Indyk, then the US Ambassador to Israel.
Foreign journalists covering the region are so careful not to amplify or accept at face value the “hasbara” disseminated by the Israeli government or pro-Israel groups, yet seem perfectly willing to report (as real news) such staged protests and other forms of political street theatre.
UKMW prompts Financial Times correction – editors admit there are no ‘Jews-only roads’ in West Bank.
An article in the Financial Times included the claim that there are ‘Jews-only’ roads in the West Bank. However, as CAMERA has demonstrated on multiple occasions, there are not, nor have there ever been, anywhere in Israel or the West Bank, roads exclusively for Jews.
The Lancet has demonstrated over the course of many years that it has little interest in exploring the impact on Gaza’s healthcare of Palestinian factional disputes, as well as Hamas’s decision to use limited resources to fund rockets and terror tunnels rather than medicine and hospitals. It prefers instead to impute causality to Israel for all conceivable Palestinian health deficiencies – those real and imagined.
Whilst it won’t become clear for quite a while if the new guidelines will result in a continuation of this construction slow-down, it’s quite a commentary when far-left Haaretz frames the settlement policy of a ‘right wing’ Israeli government far more sympathetically than the Guardian.
The sole source for the alleged quote appears to be a book by Hirsh Goodman published in 2005, which purports to recall a radio broadcast by Ben-Gurion on June 10th, 1967, day five of the Six Day War. We could find no other evidence to back up Goodman’s claim.
We have got so used to these extreme critiques of settlements, that we forget the basis on which they rest – that for a Palestinian state to exist, there must be no Jews whatsoever within its territory. This assumption is often unchallenged, but when one analyses it, it is hard to characterise it as anything other racist.
Whatever one’s views on Israeli construction across the green line, the narrative often advanced in the UK media – of new settlements expanding at ‘a record pace’, eating away at ‘huge swaths’ of Palestinian territory and rendering a future Palestinian state nearly impossible – is, at best, extraordinarily misleading.
Hebron is an important city to Israelis and Palestinians, to Jews and to Muslims, and the situation there is complex. The UK media should reflect this complexity, rather than warping a story to fit premade ideological outlooks.
By turning a complex and vexing political dispute into a binary moral paradigm, reducing the historical and diplomatic complexities of a more than 100 year-long conflict to one territorial dispute, and dismissing authentic, historically-informed Israeli fears of Palestinian intentions as nothing more than a failure of empathy and imagination, Emily Hilton is certainly not “challenging narratives”.
If the Guardian journalist had done some fact checking, he would have easily found such evidence clearly contradicting the WCC spokesperson’s claims that they have “no connection to BDS”.
As readers of The London Magazine will learn in the latest issue of the publication, the American writer Ben Ehrenreich thinks “that the word ‘terrorism’ forms this very powerful narrative function in silencing Palestinian voices and giving the sole authority to Israelis.”
By uncritically repeating such toxic canards, and fail to make a serious effort to separate facts from anti-Zionist fiction, the Indy may increasingly be viewed by many within the British Jewish community as something akin to a purveyor of fake news about the Jewish state.