Media Bias

Media bias on the Middle East conflict is claimed by both sides. The Palestinians are sure that the world, or America, is closer to Israel, while Israelis view the world as a hostile place.
I myself cannot find any bias against the Palestinians, and I have been looking. On the other hand, a series of articles and headlines in the New York Times have rid any doubt that the Media goes to great lengths to make Israel the bad-guy.
I will not even comment on the “human interest” piece the New York Times published on December 28th for lack of a better story, as a chance for James Bennet to further advance his ideology using a Palestinian boxer as his pawn.
Instead, here is one very simple example that isn’t usually caught due to its normalicy: two back-to-back headlines in the New York Times. On December 27th, the Times reported that Israeli Raids Kill at Least 8 Palestinians, and on December 29th, according to the Times Gunmen Kill 4 Inside Yeshiva in West Bank.
The devil, as the saying goes, is in the details.
The first headline, “Israeli Raids Kill at Least 8 Palestinians” makes it pretty clear to the casual glancer that Palestinians, assumed to be civilians, were killed by Israel in an aggressive action (a “raid”). The other headline, however, is much more confusing. “Gunmen Kill 4 Inside Yeshiva in West Bank”–Palestinians live in the West Bank, so if one did not know what a Yeshiva was–say a non-Jew read the headline–you could think that Israeli gunmen killed another four supposed civilians.
But the facts are exactly the opposite: the Palestinians killed were mostly terrorists from the Islamic Jihad, and not civilians, but you wouldn’t know that until you read through the entire article. Those bystanders regretfully hit were put in danger by the terrorists themselves. And yet those killed in the Yeshiva were unarmed Jews, civilians in every sense of the word.
Why are “at Least 8 Palestinians Killed” but “Gunmen Kill 4” when it comes to Jews? Aren’t Jews or Israelis people too? Why does it matter that the murder was in a Yeshiva? Is it more justifiable or understandable that the “gunmen” murdered the Jews in a Yeshiva then, say, if they were Palestinian terrorists?
What if the headline read “Palestinian Attack Kills At Least 4 Israelis” and “Gunmen Kill 8 Inside West Bank”? Or how about “Terrorists Kill 4 Unarmed Israeli Civilians” and “IDF Confronts Terrorists in West Bank; 8 Killed.”
But it wouldn’t. The New York Times would never dare to join with the rest of the world community in calling the Islamic Jihad a terrorist organization, nor would it call those who live in the West Bank human beings. Hey, this is the New York Times–it cannot make moral judgments, can it?


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