Sunday, August 26, 2007

The Missing Wing

This ABC news article is over a week old, but it was interesting to observe (emphasis added):

Netanyahu re-elected head of Israel's Likud

Israel's former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been re-elected leader of Likud, cementing his grip on the main right-wing opposition party currently running ahead in opinion polls.
Likud = right-wing. Everybody clear?
Mr Netanyahu won 73.2 per cent of the vote, while his extreme right-wing challenger Moshe Feiglin gained 23.4 per cent and the little known third candidate Danny Danon 3.4 per cent, official results showed.
Feiglin = extreme right-wing. All clear on that one?
At present Bibi, as Mr Netanyahu is known in Israel, and Likud are topping opinion polls, capitalising on a slide in ratings of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's centrist Kadima because of last year's inconclusive war in Lebanon and a string of scandals involving senior government officials.
Kadima = centrist.

Looks like a pattern now: we get an adjective to describe the political slant of every Israeli political party.
Mr Netanyahu is the public's first choice to be Israel's next prime minister - 36 per cent favoured him in a recent opinion poll, compared with 8 per cent for Mr Olmert and 22 per cent for formerpPremier [sic] and current Defence Minister Ehud Barak of Labour.
Labour = ?

Aren't we missing a wing here, ABC?

I Hope I Am Wrong

In mid-September, General Petraeus will report back to the US Congress on the progress -or lack thereof - in Iraq, using a number of benchmarks.

At least one consideration is the state of security and level of terrorist violence in Iraq.

Already, some have suggested that al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) will try a Tet Offensive tactic, possibly in the form of a mega-suicide attack. The intention would be to sway public opinion in the US that the military should be withdrawn.

In this context, comes this article from Reuters:

Thousands of Shi'ite pilgrims set off for Iraq's holy city of Kerbala on Sunday, demonstrating their political power but aware of the threat of bomb attacks ahead of one of Shi'ite Islam's holiest days.
I hope I am wrong, but the timing is ominous.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

How Cool Is This?

Invited to guest blog at Israellycool for this week, an initial contribution based on Dore Gold's opinion piece.

How cool? Israellycool.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Blood Libel is Quicker Than Mortar

The ABC recently reported on their news website the following article:

Two children killed in Gaza blast

Posted Tue Aug 7, 2007 6:23pm AEST

Two Palestinian children have been killed in the northern Gaza Strip after an Israeli shell they were playing with exploded, witnesses and medics said.

Siblings Wissam and Hala Kafarne, eight and six years old respectively, died when the shell exploded inside their house in the northern town of Beit Hanun, near the border with Israel, they said.
The article then morphs into a curious description of the evacuation of Israelis from Hebron using the term "ultra-nationalists" to describe the protestors. Such a term is never used by the ABC to describe any Palestinians from Fatah, but that is another story.

At the bottom of the article it is credited to AFP, Agence France Presse, the news wire service.

So for the ABC, it is an open and shut case. The Palestinian witnesses and medics, upon whom the ABC have always relied for accurate descriptions of water poisoned by Israelis, Zionist death rays and the like, can now categorically and instantly tell incoming the origin of an explosive package. These witnesses and medics have incredible talent in forensics.

The ABC has no reason to be skeptical of this instance of the blood libel: Israeli weapons kill Palestinian children. The only twist this time is that it was an unexploded shell that tragically became "exploded", rather than say a soldier aiming at an innocent child in the midst of a battle with terrorists, as Israeli soldiers are want to do when trying to defend themselves. According to the ABC.

Jerusalem Post, on the other hand, were not so quick to jump to conclusions when reporting the incident:
Witnesses said a group of children stumbled upon a homemade rocket or a mortar shell and began playing with it.


No Palestinian group blamed the IDF for the explosion.
The "homemade rocket" and lack of blame on IDF by Palestinians seems to missing from the ABC version of the story. How bizarre.

It gets better.

Ha'aretz now have more information in an updated version of events in their coverage:
Qassam rocket fired at Israel kills two children in Gaza Strip

A Qassam rocket fired by Palestinian militants struck the northern Gaza Strip on Tuesday, killing an eight-year-old boy and his six-year-old sister, and injuring five other children.

The rocket, fired at Israel, fell short and hit the children's house in the village of Beit Lahiya. No group claimed responsibility.


The Associated Press had earlier quoted witnesses as saying the blast was the result of the children playing with a homemade rocket or a mortar shell that they had stumbled upon. It is not uncommon for Qassam rockets fired at Israel to land inside the Gaza Strip.
There was doubt about the source of the explosion from the outset, but not in the ABC's version.

When the doubt was cleared, it was entirely the opposite of what the ABC originally reported.

Palestinian "militants" caused the death of their own children, but
the ABC, along with their news wire of choice, AFP, have reported the incident 180 degrees out of sync with the facts. And have not corrected it.

What started most likely as an error in reporting - due in part to an anti-Israel pro-Palestinian lens - has now become a wilful distortion of the truth in their failure to amend the falsehoods.

The ABC have been quicker to spread a blood libel than the speed of an incoming Israeli mortar shell. A shell that never was.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Power Points

Powerline is an impressive blog run by three very switched-on American lawyers: John Hinderaker, Scott Johnson and Paul Mirengoff.

A recent posting titled Israel: The outside story comes from Scott who recently returned from a visit there.

Obviously taken with the country, Scott writes:

Israel is a vibrant country without peer in ways that Americans would appreciate if they were aware of them. Yet as a result of Israel's depiction in the mainstream media, Israel's image in the United States and elsewhere inverts reality. Given the war we are in and Israel's status as one of America's crucial allies, it is important that we begin to get the story straight. Let me take just a few examples that occur to me as I reflect on our visit to Israel this week.
Scott then lists four points - four "images" of Israel through the mainstream media lens - and responds to each of them by providing the reality.

Read the post in full by clicking here.

It's well worth it.

UPDATE: Pajamas Media must read this blog. They picked it up too and posted about it.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Should Mainstream Media Reflect Reality?

Is this something that has been shown on your ABC, SBS or commercial TV station?

Is this something that has been reported in your newspaper? On the mainstream media news websites?

Should it be?

(Hat tip: Dan L)