‘NYT’ (literally) erases the occupation from coverage of Bab al-Shams

Israel/PalestineUS Politics
on 25 Comments

Good news: the New York Times covered the inspiring Bab al-Shams story. Bad news: they erased the occupation from the story.

Here was the original headline on the story published today:

Screenshot taken from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Several hours later it was changed to:

Screenshot from the New York Times website

Ali Abuminah reports:

The website Newsdiffs.org shows that the original headline was posted at 1:09 PM EST and changed at 7:10 PM EST, some six hours later.

A key goal of Israeli propaganda is to eliminate the term “occupied” from media coverage of Israel’s, well, occupation. Many media have adopted terms like “disputed” that grant false legitimacy to Israeli claims to the land which are totally null and void in international law.

(h/t Jamie Stern-Weiner)

About Adam Horowitz

Adam Horowitz is Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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25 Responses

  1. ToivoS
    January 11, 2013, 8:12 pm

    oops, wrong thread

  2. Avi_G.
    January 11, 2013, 8:15 pm

    It’s always nice to know that the New York Times will change a headline or report or article based on the say so of some Israeli government official or some pro-Israel hack.

    • Basilio
      January 12, 2013, 7:33 am

      Well, the fact that that original heading was there shows that there are plenty in the Jewish community in the US who believe in calling a spade a spade, but you still have some powerful forces who don’t want that or consider it too controversial. If they didn’t want controversy, they could have said Palestinian plant tents on land where they want their future state. I gave a lecture today about the conflict and explained that some Israelis and their supporters don’t view the land as occupied, but the Palestinians definitely feel it is as do the international bodies out there. Israel has a lot of pull.

    • pabelmont
      January 12, 2013, 8:20 am

      Give one point to KERSHNER, anyhow, she tried, and she’s on our black list. The change seems to be an editor’s work.

      And, please note, picture’s CAPTION, includes the “Israeli-occupied” information, but (slightly) suggests that only parts of the occupied territories are “contested”, “E-1” being one such.

      Bet a nickel the grand old lady forgets to note that all settlement building in occupied territory is illegal and all Israeli settlers are present in all occupied territories illegally, the illegality in each case being a determination of ICRC (which is primary interpreter of Fourth Geneva Convention), UNGA, UNSC (particularly UNSC-465 1980, which demands Israel remove all settlers and dismantle all settlements, and International Court of Justice, in opinion dated July 9, 2004.

      Come to think on it, make that a dime. (And, no, I have not read the piece.)

  3. Les
    January 11, 2013, 8:21 pm

    I prefer to use “ethnic cleansing” because it is not a routine that anyone can possibly adjust to as is implied when the vastly softer word, “occupation,” is used.

    • Basilio
      January 12, 2013, 9:39 am

      In many cases, there’s ethnic cleansing because inhabitants native to the land are often removed by force. One need not kill people en masse as was done to the Bosnian Muslims for there to be ethnic cleansing. However, people are too afraid to call a spade a spade in the U.S. They don’t want to offend some pro-Israelis. Whatever you want to call it, it’s certainly morally bankrupt to demolish thousands upon thousands of homes and seize land and remove people from lands they were born on. It doesn’t phase the Israeli Government even one bit, and the US media hasn’t the courage to shine some daylight on such a dark situation.

  4. eGuard
    January 11, 2013, 8:49 pm

    NYT: don’t lie.

  5. Kathleen
    January 11, 2013, 8:54 pm

    Not surprising. par for the course. Quite a piece over at Foreign Policy “The Most Hated Woman in Israel’ by Larry Derfner. Haneen Zoabi

    • jimmy
      January 12, 2013, 8:34 am

      I wonder …who the most hated person in the US is….

      I’d be willing to bet that it is the POTUS

      • Kathleen
        January 13, 2013, 10:46 am

        Bush 43 or Cheney

  6. Blownaway
    January 11, 2013, 9:55 pm

    it must be difficult over at the NYT. their inclination is to say the truth but every time they do someone comes down on them hard and then to have to make themselves look foolish and self censor

    • Kathleen
      January 13, 2013, 10:49 am

      “their inclination is to say the truth” total horseshit. That newspaper has the blood of the Iraqi people and American soldiers dripping down its pages and on line access. I know Americans have short term memories but geez. Have you forgotten how they allowed Judy “I was fucking right” Miller to tell out right lies about WMD’s in Iraq in that bloody rag

  7. thankgodimatheist
    January 11, 2013, 10:32 pm

    Even Haaretz called a spade a spade but the NYT wouldn’t! And this is the most “respectable” US paper?!!

  8. ritzl
    January 12, 2013, 1:31 am

    Glad you all are watching and calling this stuff out, and also thanks to Jamie for continuing to support MW. Big heart there, imo.

  9. Michael Levin
    January 12, 2013, 4:30 am

    From Bab AlShams facebook page [ https://www.facebook.com/Babalshams2013 ], 1/12/13:

    “The Israeli police arrived in Bab Al Shams this morning & gave us a notice to evict the village immediately they say they will evict us soon …
    Journalists Activists anyone who believes in our right to build our village on land that we own plz come to Bab Al Shams tp Stop the eviction”

  10. Avi_G.
    January 12, 2013, 7:38 am

    I have just listened to an interview with Phil Weiss on the Scott Horton show and I must say it was a great interview. Phil was awesome. I encourage everyone to head on over to the website and listen to the show.
    Phil gives a great overview of the situation on the ground in the occupied West Bank.

    Highly recommended.

    • LeaNder
      January 12, 2013, 8:49 am

      Avi, Scott Horton interviewed Phil before. I guess you are alluding to this one:

      Phil Weiss on Scott Horton’s Radio show 1/08/13

      • LeaNder
        January 12, 2013, 10:03 am

        Yes, good debate. Horton’s interviews always seem more debates than pure interviews to me.

        Strictly, I am a bit more hesitant concerning the hope Phil and/or Akiva Eldar place into Europe. I even wonder to what extend it could be a reverse effect to the efforts to hammer the equation Europe = Antisemitic into American minds during the last decade.

        In any case, I am hesitant about Germany. Merkel is an Atlantiker, someone politically rooted in close relations between Germany and the US, and to Israel for the well known reason. As far as can tell that usually means the US leads, Europe follows. It also feels it means submission to US political dynamics. And Merkel is here to stay. If the social democrats had he man of the stature and charisma of a Gregor Gysi, it might look different. But strictly there is none, I far as I can see. Or if some social democrat opportunist like Schroeder was up for election. Yes, I know that is a bit cynical.

        But of course, one never should give up hope. In any case it may well depend on a changing attitudes among the European Jewish diaspora to a certain degree too. Or that Israel continues to overplay her hand.

        Maybe I trust more the fact that the times are a changing than Europe, really. Let’s see, so far Phil was right more often than more pessimistic me. In this context it may indeed matter that the sentiment mirrored in the German empirical data, Lefty occasionally alludes to, may play indeed a bigger role in Merkel’s decisions than I am willing to concede. There have been minor hints in that direction.

        This is an interesting portrait of Chuck Hagel from 2007.

      • munro
        January 12, 2013, 12:37 pm

        Scott Horton interview with Philip Weiss:

  11. David Samel
    January 12, 2013, 8:29 am

    I take a different view here. I thought the article was considerably better than what we have come to expect from Kershner. First of all, when Adam says that “they erased the occupation from the story,” that’s not true. It was erased from the headline but still appears in the first sentence of the story. But true, the headline change is typically irritating NY Times. There is no reason for it other than to be “fair” to Israel at the expense of the truth.

    Still, the article is much more forthcoming than usual. Kershner gives voice to no fewer than three articulate Palestinian voices — Khatib, Kopty, and Ashrawi — where they sometimes have no Palestinian interview at all. The article notes that Israel’s plan to build in E1 “stirred international outrage,” and was opposed by the US.

    True, the article appears in the Times and does not resemble a MW article. That is, it seems to draw an equivalence between settlers illegally setting up outposts and Palestinians legally building on their own land; it does not describe the “annexation” of Maale Adumim as illegal and unrecognized by every country on Earth; it mentions but does not question the bizarre circumstance that legalities will be determined by the Israeli Supreme Court; it calls E1 a “hotly contested” piece of land as if Israel v. the rest of the world is a “contest.” Nevertheless, I was surprised at the unusual fair representation of Palestinian opinion in the article.

  12. Maximus Decimus Meridius
    January 12, 2013, 8:30 am

    At least the NYT is covering the story. It has been conspicuously absent from the pages of The Guardian. The extent to which the Graun has ‘modified’ its stance on Palestine to placate CiF Watch is sad to behold.

  13. pipistro
    January 12, 2013, 8:09 pm

    Said the New York Times skeleton
    “That’s not fit to print”

    I wonder if they’ll note that Israel’s gonna miss the opportunity to demostrate that a peaceful protest works better than home made rockets.

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