‘NYT’ runs long story on settlers without using words ‘occupied’ or ‘occupation’

Israel/Palestine
on 4 Comments

Writes a friend: Did you see Isabel Kershner, in this New York Times story about Israel training Jewish settlers to suppress Palestinian demonstrators, was unable to bring herself to refer to the occupied Golan Heights but instead called them disputed?


In what some here saw as a rehearsal for September, thousands of Palestinians and their supporters, some wielding firebombs and stones, tried to breach Israel’s northern border with Lebanon and the frontier between Syria and the disputed Israeli-held Golan Heights in May, with a repeat on the Syrian frontier in June.

Indeed, the whole story never uses the word occupied, or occupation! Also, she cites settlers’ biblical claims,

There are high levels of hostility — and past clashes — between some Palestinian villages and neighboring settlements and outposts dominated by Jews claiming territory they consider their biblical birthright.

but doesn’t note that international law regards such actions as illegal. So the Bible has greater relevance to her than international law? Would the NYT do this on any other issue?

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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4 Responses

  1. Les
    August 31, 2011, 11:34 am

    Times’ reporters have figured out that words such as “occupation,” “settlements,” and “ethnic cleansing” are unfit to print according to their bosses. It’s called “self censorship.”

    • Pamela Olson
      August 31, 2011, 12:23 pm

      I know journalists even with the BBC, who know everything, but who have learned to self-censor because the editors simply won’t allow anything that hits too close to the truth. I can only imagine how much worse it is at the NYT.

      • pabelmont
        September 5, 2011, 7:24 pm

        Call it censorship (by editors, by owners, by advertisers, by readers) or call it (protective) self-censorship (by reporters) — it all comes to the same thing.

        HOWEVER, there is another possibility for slanted news.

        In some cases (not NYT I’d imagine) the reporters themselves have a Zionist (or a pro-Palestinian) ideology and allow such ideology expression in their writing (all independent of any ideology of the owners, editors, advertisers, readers). The huge number of Jewish reporters/news-readers on NPR might, I suppose, reflect “talent” rather than editorial slant, and it may also explain the pro-Israel slant on NPR as a pure reportorial choice (rather than editorial direction). Who knows? But I’d go with editorial slanting and consequent “self-censorship” in tandem with personal reportorial ideological slanting.

  2. DICKERSON3870
    August 31, 2011, 6:59 pm

    RE: “‘NYT’ runs long story on settlers without using words ‘occupied’ or ‘occupation’ ” ~ Weiss

    SEE: Systematically Biased Reporting ~ By Matthew A. Taylor, Adbusters, 8/28/11

    Although the spin is hard to detect for the average reader, New York Times reportage of Middle East affairs is perniciously biased. In their seminal book, Israel-Palestine on Record: How the New York Times Misreports Conflict in the Middle East, Princeton professor Richard Falk and media critic Howard Friel argue that “the Times regularly ignores or under-reports a multitude of critical legal issues pertaining to Israel’s policies, including Israel’s expropriation and settlement of Palestinian land, the two-tier system of laws based on national origin evocative of South Africa’s apartheid regime, the demolition of Palestinian homes, and use of deadly force against Palestinians.” In other words, what is not said by the New York Times may be even more important than what is said…
    …In large part because of Ethan Bronner and Isabel Kershner’s ahistorical, context-free, reporting-in-a-vacuum, the New York Times is to blame for what Adbusters has previously called “the United States of Amnesia.” American citizens are left unaware of Israel’s current and historical violations of international law and are thus unable to question their government’s multibillion dollar military giveaways to Israel, a state that just happens to be these two reporters’ adopted home.

    ENTIRE ARTICLE – link to adbusters.org

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