US Media & the Coverage of the Israel-Palestine Conflict

Biased, Tainted, and Filtered?

A few days ago I was on the phone talking with a great journalist and one of the best analysts around on the US media. We were discussing various factors of influence on our media, including many so-called alternatives, and naturally, we started talking about the Israel Lobby Factor. You know, one of those extremely important topics many know about but very few dare to mention, and even then only in hushed voices, which tells you how deep and far-reaching their tentacles explore, exploit, and extinguish …

I will be writing about this factor now and then, and no, I won’t be doing it with trembling pen strokes or in a hushed voice.

So back to the real purpose of this post. She told me about a solid documentary on this same topic, US Media & the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, produced by the Media Education Foundation. MEF produces and distributes documentary films and other educational resources to inspire critical reflection on the social, political, and cultural impact of American mass media. I encourage you to check out their site and some of their projects here. As soon as I hung up I went to my PC, clicked on the site, and played the film. It is slightly over an hour in length, but I was glued to my chair and watched the entire film, and later that night I watched it again.

Amazingly, this film was released three years ago! How in the world did I miss it?! Oh well, I’ll go ahead and blame that on our media tooJ Anyhow, some of you may also have missed this film, so here it is, please watch and let me know what you think:

Peace, Propaganda and the Promised Land: Media & the Israel-Palestine Conflict

Produced by Media Education Foundation

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    Several years ago I met Jerry and Sis. It turned me around 180 degrees in my consideration of the Palestinian issue. When you meet the person who escorts Palestinian children to school because they are being stoned by settlers. When you see the map of the wall enclosing the Palestinians taken from THEIR farmland. When you see the ghettos… Jerry is Jewish. He was a bureau chief for CNN in Lebanon and held hostage for eleven months. The U.S. refused to help because of their relationship with Israel. It was Jerry’s wife Sis that raised enough support and a few kind Palestinian jailers that got him through it all.

  2. Bill Bergman says:

    Off topic, a smidgeon, but check out today’s New York Times, the second editorial. “Fired for Speaking Out.” You’ve got to take the good with the bad, and appreciate the former when it arrives.

  3. thats right. media manipulation. ownership of information streams.the big lies hid behind intellectual enquiry. perception management.

  4. Thanks for the post. Anything to get away from the standard MSM screaming heads “debate”.

  5. This presentation should be seen by every American and it’s enough to make one sick to their stomach.

    I can’t even watch the mainstream TV or read the mainstream press. These are pure propaganda masquerading as news.

    Israel is engaged in what amounts to genocide. She wants these people to be taken away to other Arab countries of die in the oppression of their military occupation.

    The USA’s failure to condemn Israel, act as an honest broker is telling. We too, are effectively a fascist society.

  6. Interesting conference with Ellsberg, Hersh and others

  7. @simon: That’s a powerful example. My Primary school had several Palestinian refugee children, and I got to see many pictures, heard many first-account stories…As Sander O says: ‘makes one sick to their stomach’

  8. Slightly off topic. But possibly tied into where Tony Blair is putting all the (millions?) he’s getting from being a “Middle East Peace Envoy.”

  9. About 20 years ago, I met a couple of Palestinian brothers, Samir and Nabil, who were born in the Mount of Olives neighborhood of Jerusalem. The house they grew up in had been in their family for over 200 years with title deeds showing unbroken ownership back to the days of the Ottoman Empire. Every succeeding governmental administration through the years had recognized those deeds until 1967 when Israel occupied East Jerusalem. The Israeli government never recognized those deeds and made new law requiring any Arab resident of East Jerusalem to spend at least a month in their homes each year. So, every year, they would have to fly to Amman, travel into the West Bank, pass through innumerable Isreali checkpoints and endure constant harassment to reach and stay in their house. If they didn’t do this, the Israeli government would declare the land unoccupied, seize it and distribute it to Israeli settlers. In fact, they were the first people to tell me that Hamas was financed by the Mossad as a counter to the PLO and Fatah, something finally confirmed in the press five years later.

    It’s a very Jungian thing that you become the very thing you hate and fear the most. So the advice I give Palestinians is as follows:

    1. Dress every Palestinian in the Occupied Territories in Striped suits with yellow crescent moons and stars.

    2. Change the name of every village, town and city in the Occupied Territories to names like Auschwitz. Treblinka, Sobibor, Dachau, Belsen etc.

    3. Erect signs on the Palestinian side of every border checkpoint with the following slogan: “Arbeit Macht Frei”.

    4. Paint the Israeli side of the “Security Wall”, ala Banksy, in murals depicting barbed wire, machine gun towers and all the other trappings of a concentration camp along it’s entire length.

    Banksy, for those unfamiliar with his work, is a British muralist/artist who painted murals on the Palestinian side of the wall as a commentary. His site is linked below:

    I also would add a question I wrote on the visitors book at the LA Holocaust Museum some years ago and asked to one of the docents:

    “Are Jews who hate Arabs Anti-Semitic?”

    Think about it for a minute.

  10. Sibel, I won’t mince any words on this issue.

    Real spirituality of God and Christ taught that man must condemn evil, no matter how unflattering it seems.

    And to me all modern “Zionism” epitomizes pure evil, the very movement of Zionism is nearly as close as you’ll get.

    First, who of God or anyone gave certain blue blooded “chosen ones”, including “chosen Jews” the right to smite down their fellow man and rule over all of them as slave masters?

    Who gave them the right to designate all of Israel and its territories a land for exclusively German Jews and blue bloods?

    To expel all others who did not match this criteria, in the land of whom Israel claims is “the chosen man’s kingdom”?

    Then in the process of this, to be taught through scripture that modern man is not god like only certain chosen Jews are “God” and the rest are animals. Since the rest are animals, it is okay for blue blood Israelis to smite and kill them one after another thus its okay for Palestinians & Indians to be wiped out just not for Zionists. This is what is professed in the worse pages of the Talmud and the Koran itself, has its own category of insane brevity but to take it too such extremes as Babylon did I do not know if they were capable.

    What about this movement of Zionism is actually good at all? The original plan was Jews and Arabs, and all semites would share that land. It would never be a land exclusively for “chosen people” only, that was a completely racist wacky sermon spurned from the Talmud and Kaballah.

    Instead what you have is an out of control banking system, constant military expansion projects, trillions of dollars flooding into Israel and Georgia so they can kill people whom don’t meet their definition of “God-like”. This is Zionism. This is insane neo colonialism.

    This is near as I can tell the definition of evil, God not only rebuked Zionism he never gave everyone permission to set up their exclusive club for only one race of man. Palestinians and Arabs suffer, then everyone else suffers thanks to this pathalogical distortion of religion where any man can die if they are not worthy of Israel.

  11. the CIA at it again:

    what most impacted me was the map of the settlements which clearly reveals their intentions.

    the positions have become reversed: the holocaust victims are now the ghetto capos shown on those videos.

    the extent to which the media is brazenly complicit shows the deep seated arrogance

  12. It’s good to be among people with a similar view on this for a change. Often enough I’m fairly alone on this. It’s not that a lot of other people wouldn’t care, although some clearly wouldn’t, but that they just don’t know and unfortunately, often enough, don’t want one more thing to worry about.

    Here are a couple of video’s to indicate the extent of the violence and oppression. Not for those with weak stomachs.

    There’s also a really disturbing video of a young Palestinian being run over by a Jewish man with his car and then backed over. But given that it’s a single man’s murderous act and thus arguably not indicative of state repression I didn’t know whether it was worthwhile posting a link. Plus it’s disturbing. But, on the other hand, it’s at least indicative of the kinds of violence that gets carried out. If you really want to see it I’m sure you can find it at youtube with the right keywords. I know it’s there I just watched it again.

    Also, there was recently an American Jewish man captured and tried in Israel for murdering Palestinians. He was found ‘unfit for trial’ and apparently given some kind of psychological treatment. It seems he had been traveling to Israel regularly to carry out terrorist acts for quite a number of years. I can’t seem to find the link right now.

    I don’t want to start advertising for political groups but if Sibel will allow it there’s a particular pro-Palestenian lobby group I’d suggest to anyone interested. I suggest it because it was suggested to me by Anna Baltzer a young Jewish woman who’s a strong pro-Palestinian activist. She was recently on the Daily Show along with Mustafa Barghouti (a palestinian politician and peace activist). If you have the time go look up the video at the Daily Show site. They had there first heckler in 11 years that night.

    Oh and be sure to check out this blog (which I’ve posted here before)

    and this site

  13. We need to rid ourselves of the intel agencies. They operate out side the law and serve masters and agendas we neither know or sanction. Of course, we are told that they are necessary to protect our democracy. That, in fact, is pure hooey.

    Anything in secret in a democracy is wrong. END OF STORY. When it exists, we HAVE NO DEMOCRACY.

  14. I came across a link during ‘Operation Cast Lead’ called
    Sunrise in Gaza.

    During the night I’d listen to the sunrise, birds singing, horns honking,
    voices on the street.
    Then in the distance, an explosion or two. More birds and More explosions.

    I didn’t usually watch but some of the Bombs were so loud and so many at one time. I saw a couple of major hits.

    Very Surreal.

  15. Thank you. Web education is becoming increasingly crucial.

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