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‘NY Times’ bias about Israel’s massacre in Gaza just won’t go away

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on 30 Comments

At first glance, today’s New York Times article on Israel’s massacre in Gaza looks like an improvement from its first efforts at whitewash. The piece actually reports that the respected Israeli human rights organization, B’Tselem, has taken out newspaper ads asking Israeli soldiers to disobey future orders to shoot at the Gazan demonstrators.

But on closer inspection, the article turns out to be just as biased as the Times’s previous reports. It reads more like a theoretical discussion about when lethal force is justified, instead of a genuine effort to find out what actually happened on March 30 inside the Gazan border.

First, the Times does give the Gazan death toll, which is now up to 19 after four more of the injured died. But it nowhere reports the number of Palestinians who were injured by Israeli live ammunition, which ranges somewhere from 700 on up to 1000. Surely an honest report on the use of force should have included such a figure.

Next, the Times covers up the fact that no Israelis, soldiers or anyone else, were injured at all; none of them got as much as a scratch. Any assessment about whether Israel had the right to open fire should report this fact.

Then, although the paper does have a stringer in Gaza City, the article does not include a single interview with any Gazan eyewitnesses to the slaughter on March 30. But the Times did find time to participate in a “conference call with reporters” conducted by General Ronen Manelis, an Israeli army spokesman, and the paper reported his preposterous claims without vigorous challenge.

At least today’s report ended with one truthful paragraph, even though it was buried at the very end of the article —  a lengthy quote from Hagai El-Ad, the executive director of B’Tselem:

This is not complicated. To see Israeli soldiers, inside Israel, firing live ammunition from a distance at unarmed Palestinian protesters inside the blockaded Gaza Strip — with the figures of injuries and fatalities that resulted from that — you do not need to be a legal expert to look at that and say that this is outrageous, illegal, immoral and unacceptable.”

Here’s a suggestion for the Times: contact Breaking the Silence, the human rights organization of Israeli soldiers who are determined to give their eyewitness accounts of the awful occupation of Palestine, and ask them what really happened on March 30.

James North
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30 Responses

  1. guyn
    guyn
    April 6, 2018, 5:04 pm

    At least, the last paragraph cited B’Tselem:

    “This is not complicated,” he said. “To see Israeli soldiers, inside Israel, firing live ammunition from a distance at unarmed Palestinian protesters inside the blockaded Gaza Strip, with the figures of injuries and fatalities that resulted from that — you do not need to be a legal expert to look at that and say this is outrageous, illegal, immoral and unacceptable.”

    • JWalters
      JWalters
      April 7, 2018, 7:20 pm

      The big problem is that this assessment applies to the ENTIRE history of Israel from 1948 on. And THAT reality MUST be kept from the general public at ALL costs.

      • guyn
        guyn
        April 7, 2018, 11:29 pm

        Yes, but even for them there is a limit to control information in our time. And the Palestinians don’t give up, especially on the right of return, that’s what is remarkable and encouraging.

  2. Citizen
    Citizen
    April 6, 2018, 5:40 pm

    Nothing about this subject on NY Times Twitter stream, although other foreign news is abundant enough. BTW, the death toll is now 21, with 1400+ maimed.

  3. JimMichie
    JimMichie
    April 7, 2018, 9:45 am

    Phil Weiss, you need to submit this to the NYTimes as an op-ed. Will it be published? Obviously not, but someone at the Times will at least have read it.

    A more descriptive headline for this piece? “New York Times doesn’t give up on its defense of indefensible Israel”

    Nonetheless, my compliments to Mondoweiss for its strengthening opposition to fascist racist Zionist Israel with their pieces yesterday:

    Seven things you need to know about Israel’s latest attack on Gaza
    http://mondoweiss.net/2018/04/things-israels-latest/

    Israel just lost American Jews
    http://mondoweiss.net/2018/04/israel-just-american/

    I gave these pieces broad distribution on both Facebook and Twitter, and especially to the Israeli trolls at the New York Times, including its new publisher, A.G. Sulzberger, son of Arthur O. Sulzberger, Jr. recently retired as publisher. Footnote: A.G. is every bit as bad as his father was in defending the indefensible brutal, racist, genocidal, ethnic cleansing, land-stealing, fascist, terrorist Zionist Israel!

    • JWalters
      JWalters
      April 7, 2018, 7:26 pm

      Thank you for posting those links around the web. It’s extremely valuable to inform people who don’t normally read sites like Mondoweiss that the entire mainstream media is blacking out the news about Israel. A critical mass of awareness could destroy their secrecy and end their control.

  4. April 7, 2018, 10:59 am

    If the Times would spend the same amount of time reporting the truth as obscuring it they’d be a newspaper worth reading. How to keep their Zionist contributors busy would be their only problem.

    The sad reality is the Times think they are clever – these propagandist believe their readership is made up of fools. Maybe they’re right.

    • RoHa
      RoHa
      April 7, 2018, 9:00 pm

      “If the Times spent the same amount of time …”

      No “would ” in the “if” clause.

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        April 8, 2018, 12:11 am

        RoHa: “If the Times spent the same amount of time …” No “would ” in the “if” clause.
        ———————————-

        “Would” is fine in this case. It’s a modal usage of “would” which refers to willingness, often implying a lack of it.

        https://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/grammar/british-grammar/conditionals-and-wishes/conditionals-if

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_conditional_sentences#Use_of_will_and_would_in_condition_clauses

      • April 8, 2018, 10:45 am

        Thank you both RoHa and Sibiriak – I continue to learn from Mondo posters who or whom I consider to be top notch.

        Who or whom?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 8, 2018, 12:57 pm

        ” I continue to learn from Mondo posters who or whom I consider to be top notch.”

        Me, too! I’ve learned never to make an issue of spelling or grammar unless the meaning of the sentence is compromised seriously, seriously compromised, or a salacious pun can be made from it.

        “a modal usage”

        You’re a phrygian genuis, “Sibiriak”!

      • guyn
        guyn
        April 8, 2018, 2:41 pm

        “I’ve learned never to make an issue of spelling or grammar unless the meaning of the sentence is compromised seriously, seriously compromised, or a salacious pun can be made from it.”

        It is the better approach about me otherwise you would have a lot of work. ;-)

        I’m a french speaker from Canada, I can read english without problem but writing is more complicated.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 8, 2018, 2:53 pm

        “I can read english without problem but writing is more complicated.”

        You’re one up on me. I struggle with both.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 9, 2018, 12:54 am

        “It’s a modal usage of “would” which refers to willingness, often implying a lack of it.”

        If LHunter intends the modal usage, then it is indeed correct. Otherwise, “spent” or, more formally, “were to spend” is required.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 9, 2018, 1:00 am

        “Who or whom?”

        The easiest way to decide is to break up the sentence and see whether the “wh-” can be replaced by “they”, “he”, or “she”. If not, then use “whom”. “Whom” is the relative/interrogative equivalent of “him”, “her”, “them”.

        “I continue to learn from Mondo posters. I consider them to be top notch.”
        Thus: “I continue to learn from Mondo posters whom I consider to be top notch.”

      • John O
        John O
        April 9, 2018, 10:17 am

        @pedants ‘r’ us

        “I continue to learn from Mondo posters. I consider them to be top notch.”
        Thus: “I continue to learn from Mondo posters whom I consider to be top notch.”

        Oh, Dear. There is a subtle difference in meaning between the two statements. The first implies that all Mondo posters are top notch. The second implies that the writer learns from those Mondo posters whom he/she considers to be top notch. A comma after “posters” would make the sentences match.

        Ain’t the English language a b*tch?

        PS My hat’s off especially to everyone here who tries their best to write clearly and to communicate their thoughts well – especially those whose first language is not English.

        PPS The software here won’t allow me to put the correct apostrophe rather than opening single quotation mark in my salutation.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 9, 2018, 1:45 pm

        “Ain’t the English language a b*tch?”

        This verbal class distinction by now should be antique. If you spoke as “RoHa” does, sir, instead of the way you do, why, you might be selling flowers, too!
        An English speaker’s way of speaking absolutely classifies him, the moment he talks he makes some other English speaker despise him.
        One common language I’m afraid we’ll never get.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 9, 2018, 7:16 pm

        “Oh, Dear. There is a subtle difference in meaning between the two statements.”

        Quite a large difference, actually, but I was not offering them as equivalents. I was simply illustrating the relationship between “them” and “whom”. LHunter’s original had a defining relative clause, so adding the comma would have distorted his intent.

    • Jim Martin
      Jim Martin
      April 8, 2018, 10:42 pm

      It’s improper to use would in the conditional as you do in your opening sentence. The correct form of your construction is: If the Times were to spend the same amount…. or you could also say: If the Times spent the amount of time

      • amigo
        amigo
        April 9, 2018, 2:57 pm

        “An English speaker’s way of speaking absolutely classifies him, the moment he talks he makes some other English speaker despise him.” Mooser

        When a Yorkshire man speaks , other English speakers just shake their heads and move along .

        Here is one example!!.

        “8. ‘Ear all, see all, say nowt. Eat all, sup all, pay nowt. And if ever thou does owt fer nowt – allus do it fer thissen

        Yes, that is English. Sort of. This is the Yorkshireman’s motto and translates as follows:

        “Hear all, see all, say nothing. Eat all, drink all, pay nothing. And if you ever do anything for nothing—always do it for yourself.”

        More examples at ,

        http://www.bbcamerica.com/anglophenia/2013/12/eight-yorkshire-sayings-will-baffle-americans

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 9, 2018, 5:23 pm

        “amigo”, I’d rather hear a choir singing flat! There even are places where English, completely disappears!

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 10, 2018, 1:49 am

        Yorkshire is not usually a problem for me. I can even understand a lot of Geordie. (Familiarity with Scandinavian languages helps.) I can follow most Scots (which isn’t English) as well, but there are some varieties that leave me baffled.

        And Jamaican can be hard work as well. There is actually a continuum of Jamaican, from people who speak like 19th Century Oxford professors to people who use a dialect that is totally impenetrable. But all Jamaicans will tell you that they are speaking English.

        “One common language I’m afraid we’ll never get.”

        Partly because the English (unlike the Greeks and the Norwegians) don’t teach their children how to speak.

        But in Singapore the government has decided to make sure Singapore English is perfect, lah.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speak_Good_English_Movement

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 10, 2018, 2:40 pm

        “Partly because the English (unlike the Greeks and the Norwegians) don’t teach their children how to speak.”

        Exactly!Why can’t the English teach their children how to speak? Norwegians learn Norwegian; the Greeks are taught their Greek. In France every Frenchman knows his language from “A” to “Zed” (The French never care what they do, actually, as long as they pronounce it properly.)
        Arabians learn Arabian with the speed of summer lightning, and Hebrews learn it backwards, which is absolutely frightening!
        But use proper English you’re regarded as a freak.

  5. Misterioso
    Misterioso
    April 7, 2018, 11:21 am

    http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/44078-in-wake-of-gaza-massacre-israeli-leaders-should-be-prosecuted-for-war-crimes

    “In Wake of Gaza Massacre, Israeli Leaders Should Be Prosecuted for War Crimes.”

    Truthout, Friday, April 06, 2018
    By Marjorie Cohn**

    EXCERPT:
    “On March 30, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers shot 773 unarmed Palestinian protesters in Gaza, killing 17 and wounding 1,400. Twenty remain in critical condition. The protesters were marching to demand the internationally mandated right of return of refugees to their cities and villages in what now constitutes Israel.

    “The Israeli leaders who ordered the massacre were in clear violation of international law. They should be prosecuted for war crimes.”

    “Premeditated Use of Deadly Force Against Peaceful Protesters”

    “The use of deadly force against the peaceful protesters was premeditated. The IDF deployed 100 snipers to the border fence between Gaza and Israel, where 30,000 to 40,000 Palestinians had gathered for the Great March of Return. In a damning tweet, later deleted, the IDF wrote, ‘Nothing was carried out uncontrolled; everything was accurate and measured, and we know where every bullet landed.'”

    **”Marjorie Cohn is professor emerita at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, former president of the National Lawyers Guild, deputy secretary general of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers and an advisory board member of Veterans for Peace.”

    • JWalters
      JWalters
      April 7, 2018, 7:28 pm

      Sounds like she knows what she’s talking about.

    • April 8, 2018, 11:06 am

      Marjorie Cohn tells it like it is. Thx for sharing

  6. genesto
    genesto
    April 7, 2018, 1:12 pm

    Good article written by AP in the SF Chronicle this morning which gave an accurate, if somewhat restrained, report on the demonstrations and the shootings. The report was of the IDF shooting unarmed demonstrators and said nothing of the mythical ‘clashes’ reported earlier. It seems that international pressure is forcing mainstream media, at least AP for now, to issue accurate, while restrained, reports. It’s definitely a step forward.

  7. gracie fr
    gracie fr
    April 7, 2018, 3:43 pm

    Media coverage of Israel’s massacre of Palestinian protesters during the first weekend of multiweek demonstrations in Gaza offered textbook examples of how syntax and word choice shape, and even distort, representations of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Even if the facts are accurately stated, the ways in which sentences are constructed, and the extent to which details are contextualized, can subtly lead readers astray.

    Consider for instance the enormous consequence of choosing passive rather than active language to convey what happened. “At least 15 Palestinians die as Israel responds to protest,” wrote the Guardian in one early headline. “15 dead in Gaza demonstrations” read the front page of this newspaper, and the New York Times led with a similar formulation: “Confrontations at Gaza Fence Leave 15 Dead.”

    Such phrasing separates facts from the agency that makes them intelligible. After all, those Palestinians (the actual number varies according to reports) did not simply drop dead: They were shot, deliberately

    http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-makdisi-media-palestinian-gaza-massacre-20180406-story.html

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