Tuesday, 13 March 2007

IRAQ COALITION & THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA'S AGENDA: GUEST COMMENTARY

Ken Berwitz

This commentary comes from Mark Finkelstein of www.newsbusters.org.  Mark and I have had a bit of email correspondence and he seems like a good guy.  He certainly nails this one on the head, so I thought I would show it to you:

MSM Buries Story on Troop Increase in Iraq by Republic of Georgia

Q. How do you know the liberal American media are doing their best to bury a good-news story about Iraq?
A. When an official Chinese communist news outlet gives it more coverage than the MSM.
When the UK recently announced that it was reducing the number of its troops in Iraq by 1,600, the news was the subject of massive media coverage in the United States. In addition to innumerable MSM news reports on the development, pundits filled the airwaves with hours of dire conjecture as to whether the British move signalled the collapse of the coalition, etc.

But when news comes that another member of the coalition is proposing to send more additional troops to Iraq than the UK is withdrawing, MSM reaction has been the proverbial cricket-chirp.

As per this
official press release of March 8th from the Embassy of the Republic of Georgia in Washington, DC, Georgian President Mikheil Saakhashvili has proposed tripling the contingent of Georgian troops in Iraq. Given the current Georgian troop level of 850, the proposal represents an increase of 1,700 -- more than the 1,600 Brits are withdrawing.

MNF commander General David Petraeus also mentioned the Georgian proposal in his press conference last Thursday.

I Googled the news, and found very little in the US press. An
item by Bill Roggio at the Weekly Standard. One Reuters story.

What about ABC/CBS/NBC or the major liberal newspapers? If there has been coverage, I haven't seen it. Certainly any coverage by them hasn't begun to rival the way those same news organizations trumpeted the news of the British withdrawal.

I did note that a number of foreign news outlets picked up the story, including, yes, the People's Daily Online, an official publication of the government of communist China. The story's headline even had a positive ring:
Georgia's planned military increase in Iraq shows support for U.S.: official.

If only the MSM's coverage of Iraq were as fair and balanced as Beijing's!
-
Is Mark right in saying that the troop increase was ignored by mainstream media - purposefully, given the fact that it General Petraeus mentioned it in his press conference?  And, if so, what does that tell you about their agenda driven coverage? 
 
These are important things to think about when you read the news about Iraq and about President Bush's performance on the war on terrorism.


"THE PEACE PROCESS"

Ken Berwitz

In my previous blog I mentioned that, to the UN "human rights council", the only country in the world worthy of condemnation for anything is Israel.  Not, for example, Sudan or Rwanda, or Zimbabwe or Cuba or Saudi Arabia (the last two are actually MEMBERS of the council!!).

The solution, of course is for Israel to finally at long last participate in the "peace process"

If Israel would only make peace with palestinian Arabs this would all go away.  Just be peaceful, Israel, and your problems will melt like the April snow.  You will be respected and valued by the palestinian Arabs who will happily conjoin with you in peaceful coexistence.  Tra la, tra la la la.

Now that we have taken our little stroll through fantasyland, I would like to show you an article published yesterday by Reuters.  See how you feel about the peace process after reading it (bold print is mine):

-

Hamas says still seeks Israel's destruction

Mon Mar 12, 2007 9:56 AM ET

By Nidal al-Mughrabi

GAZA (Reuters) - The Palestinian Islamist group Hamas rejected on Monday criticism by al Qaeda's second-in-command and said it was still committed to Israel's destruction despite a power-sharing deal with the Fatah faction.

"We will not betray promises we made to God to continue the path of Jihad and resistance until the liberation of Palestine, all of Palestine," Hamas said in a statement, in a clear reference to Israel as well as to the occupied West Bank.

In an audio recording posted on the Internet on Sunday, al Qaeda's Ayman al-Zawahri accused Hamas of serving U.S. interests by agreeing to respect past Palestinian peace accords with Israel in a recent Saudi-brokered unity government deal with moderate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah.

The coalition agreement fell short of meeting demands by the Quartet of peace mediators -- the United States, the European Union, the United Nations and Russia -- to recognize Israel, renounce violence and accept existing interim peace deals.

Zawahri said the Mecca accord, which calmed weeks of Hamas-Fatah warfare in which more than 90 Palestinians were killed, was part of an attempt by Washington to offset Muslim anger at what he described as its bias toward Israel.

"It is an American scheme to hit the Islamic jihadist resistance against the Crusader-Zionist campaign. America wanted a sham solution to the Palestinian issue to remove the biggest reason for Muslim hatred (of the United States)," he said.

SCOLDING

Zawahri accused Hamas of abandoning a tradition of suicide bombings for political gains. "They have ditched the movement of martyrdom operations ... for a government that plays with words in palace halls," he said.

Hamas killed nearly 300 Israelis in 58 suicide bombings after a Palestinian uprising began in 2000. It last carried out a suicide bombing in Israel in 2004.

In its statement Hamas said it continued to be a "movement of resistance, seekers of martyrdom" and that its "principles will never be changed".

"Zawahri's recent statements were wrong ... Resistance is our strategy. How and when? This depends on the reality at the time and our corresponding view of things," Hamas said.

"So be assured doctor Ayman, and all those who love Palestine like yourself, that Hamas is still the group you knew when it was founded and it will never abandon its path."

Hamas said its decision to run in the January 2006 Palestinian election that brought it to power and last month's unity deal with Fatah "came only to preserve the higher interests of the Palestinian people".

Hamas leaders have offered a long-term truce with Israel in return for a viable Palestinian state in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The group's 1988 founding chapter calls for the destruction of the Jewish state

-

In reading this article, it is useful to reflect on the following:

---Hamas is not some fringe organization claiming to speak for palestinian Arabs, it is their ELECTED GOVERNMENT;

---If the elected government is "still committed to Israel's destruction", it is impossible to make peace with them.  They go in with the specific goal of vaporizing the state of Israel.  What part of that definitive commitment can be negotiated into a peace agreement?

---If the elected government states in so many words that it "will not betray promises we made to God to continue the path of jihad and resistance until the liberation of Palestine, all of Palestine", it is impossible to negotiate borders with them.  They are telling Israel they will fight; not until they get a part of the land but until there is no Israel at all.  How can that definitively stated commitment be negotiated into a peace agreement?

---When hamas tells ayman zawahiri, al qaeda's second in command, to "be assured Doctor Ayman and all those who love Palestine like yourself, that Hamas is still the group you knew when it was founded and it will never abandon its path" (thus they state definitively that they will never change the above-mentioned goals) it is impossible to negotiate anything , let alone a peace agreement.  

The simple truth is that there is no peace process.  It doesn't exist.  The only way it can ever exist is if palestinian Arabs renounce these plainly stated, definitive commitments.  And, as is conclusively demonstrated by the above statements, they are unequivocally not renouncing any of them at this time or in the forseeable future.

That's pretty clear, isn't it?  There isn't any interpretive wiggle room, is there? 

Ok, now tell me this:  Did you see anything about the Reuters report on the network news last night?  Did you read it in your newspaper this morning?  Are mainstream media, who talk about the "peace process" like a chorus of deranged parrots, going to be doing story after story, feature after feature, panel discussion after panel discussion on it?  Have they talked at all about the impossibility of making peace with people who state in so many words that they unconditionally refuse it?

Have you seen any statements of disapproval from the virulently anti-Israel group moveon.org, the organization that increasingly "owns" the Democratic party (just ask them)?  Will you?

Have you seen any condemnation of the palestinian government's statement by the Democratic party (I don't mean a couple of Jewish Democrats from New York, California and/or Florida, but the party itself), or any insistence that their "owners" at moveon.org, make such a condemnation?  Will you?

The Republican party may or may not put out a statement condemning palestinian Arabs and I hope they do.  But I don't need it from them.  Poll after poll has shown that Republicans are dramatically more supportive of Israel than are Democrats.  It is the Democratic party which needs to say something here and, though I try to be optimistic, the truth is that I don't expect it from them.

The bottom line can be stated in three points:

-There is no peace process because it takes two parties to make peace and palestinian Arabs are not one of the parties;

-The mainstream media are more interested in pushing their "peace process" story line than admitting it doesn't exist;

-The Democratic party is too scared of the leftwing lunatics at moveon.org to take a position on this and media, by looking the other way, are abetting them at the expense of Israel.


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