Role of the Media

Blind "New York Times" Continues Attacks on Jimmy Carter

The assault on Jimmy Carter and his new book which criticizes Israeli policy, Palestine: Peace not Apartheid, has been led by many of the usual, uncritical, knee-jerk Israel supporters - Alan Dershowitz, Martin Peretz and Abraham Foxman. However, the campaign to discredit Carter among more thoughtful, less partisan Americans is led by powerful, mainstream institutions like The New York Times, that are respected for their seeming objectivity and balance. Despite a facade of balance and moderate positions, Ethan Bonner’s review of Jimmy Carter’s book represents yet another example of the mainstream US media’s willful blindness on Israel/Palestine. 

With the New Year, will Ha'aretz's op-ed page be any different?

On New Year’s Day, notions of resolve, reform, or reflection come as no surprise on newspaper editorial pages. Similarly unsurprising are the op-eders that carry on with business as usual. Things were no different on Ha’aretz’s opinion page, which kept an even keel of New Yearisms. Rather untypical, however, was the limited role that honesty played in the mix. The most curious example was the lead editorial, — often viewed as any paper’s mouthpiece — entitled, “Our obligation to refugees, as refugees.” 

Among TIME's Person of the Year

“For seizing the reins of the global media, for founding and framing the new digital democracy, for working for nothing and beating the pros at their own game, Time’s Person of the Year for 2006 is you,” Time’s Lev Grossman wrote in the December 25, 2006 issue. Time magazine realizes sites like The Electronic Intifada, Electronic Iraq and Electronic Lebanon are among a new generation of people changing the landscape of journalism and the open debate of ideas. 

Book Review: Incandescent Nation

Scotland is a region which, perhaps more than anywhere else in “the West”, is profoundly sympathetic to the Palestinian cause. The Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign, under the charismatic leadership of Mick Napier, is perhaps the world’s most energetic and fearless such organisation. The Glasgow Media Group has done sterling work in unmasking the sins of commission and omission in British media coverage of the conflict. Prominent politicians like George Galloway or novelists like James Kelman have been unstinting in their support for the Palestinians (although one should also recall the Scottish origins of people like Gordon Brown and John Reid, not to mention Tony Blair!). 

Vile Jibes At President Carter Ignored By Media

On Dec. 7, 2006, CNN journalist Glenn Beck savaged President Jimmy Carter’s important new book, Palestine Peace Not Apartheid, despite clearly not having given it a close read. In the course of his diatribe he referred to President Carter as a “fathead.” Time was that an employee would be fired on the spot for such a transgression. Had my mother or father run CNN and been listening I am quite certain that Beck would have been pulled from the set and a sincere apology offered to viewers within minutes. Clearly, no real standards exist at CNN

When prime ministers sound like Borat and the press lets it pass

At least twice in the past three weeks American journalists have neglected to ask hard questions of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. Softball questions failed to pin down the prime minister on credible allegations of war crimes and human rights violations carried out in recent months by Israeli military forces. The Washington Post of Sunday, Nov. 12 published a Lally Weymouth interview with Olmert. Weymouth is infamous for never missing an opportunity to miss an opportunity when it comes to tough questioning of an Israeli leader. This time proved no different. 

Media conference criticizes discrimination against Arab media

The Mossawa Center has criticized the Israeli Cinema Council, large private companies, the government advertisement office, the Ministry of Transportation and the First and Second Broadcasting Authority for their discrimination against Arab media. This discrimination marginalizes Arab citizens and negatively affects their right to knowledge and their ability to express their needs and present them to the Arab and Jewish public. Insufficient allocation of advertising budgets to written and visual media, Internet, radio, television, cinema and even phone services has proved to be a method of further marginalizing Arab society. 

Palestinian Reporter Wins the Ethnic Media Award in Washington DC

Palestinian reporter Mohammed Omar, 22, won the best Ethnic Media Award, organized by New America Media in Washington DC. Omar won the award for his story “”Sharon, Why Did You Destroy My House?”: Operation Rainbow a Year Later” published by Washington Report on Middle East Affairs and the Norwegian “Morgenebladet” last year. Omar, who is heading to attend the “New America Media’s First National Ethnic Media Awards” in Washington DC told WAFA that he is the first journalist from the Middle East to win this award.His story sheds the light on the daily suffer and human details of Palestinian family who was turned to homeless as Israeli Occupation Forces destroyed their home in the refugee camp of Rafah, south of Gaza, last year. 

Political change in the United States? As in Israel, just different faces

When the former Israeli prime minister Sharon, was taken to the hospital almost one year ago, and his successor Olmert invited Peretz to head the ministry of defence, political commentators made money once again with their articles in support of the powerful leaders. They foresaw an almost rosy future for Israel under the auspices of Peretz, “Peace Now” forerunner and notable Labour member who promised increases in social services and advances in negotiations with the Palestinians. None of the comments make the Israeli government less guilty of crimes against humanity and the commentators less accountable for their support of that government. Rumsfeld yesterday left the ministry of defence of a government as genocidal as Israel’s, but as happened with Sharon, this change, or the wider ones brought by elections, is insufficient to achieve justice. 

Is Al-Jazeera International losing its Arab identity?

As al-Jazeera Arab satellite television channel is celebrating its tenth anniversary, with achievements unprecedented in the history of Arab media, al-Jazeera International (AJI) which encompasses plus the yet-to-be launched al-Jazeera English TV, is slowly but definitely losing its original Arab identity. Indeed, a fleeting look at AJI’s English website these days would be sufficient to make one realize how far and deep the Qatari-based media outlet has departed from its original defining character.