Post Strips News Reports Of Factual Context – Depicts Israel In Negative Light

Wednesday's Example of Media Bias   —   Posted on February 28, 2007

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-Read the excerpt below from EyeOnThePost.org posted Feb. 25th
-Read "Types of Media Bias" in the right column. Then answer the questions.

On Feb. 25th, the Washington Post published in its World in Brief section a single, solitary sentence reporting that Israel raided Nablus [the day before] and placed the city under curfew, without providing any context or explanation of Israel’s reasons. Here’s the entire post:

NABLUS, West Bank — Dozens of Israeli jeeps and armored vehicles raided the West Bank city of Nablus Sunday and placed the city under curfew.

The impression left with readers is clear: Here’s Israel’s all-powerful military swooping down on Palestinians in one of their major cities — an example of Israel’s harsh “occupation” practices. Thousands of Palestinians are locked in their homes.

But hold on. There’s something important missing from this news item: WHY DID ISRAEL CONDUCT THIS RAID? The Post doesn’t give readers a clue. Yet, the answer was widely available to Post editors from wire dispatches….

In sharp contrast to the Post, the New York Times did not hesitate to let its readers in on this secret. Here’s how the Times reported the Israeli raid in its Sunday editions:

“Israeli forces discovered a bomb-making factory in the West Bank city of Nablus during an overnight operation that ended Saturday, an army spokesman said. “Five pipe bombs, two gas balloons, materials for bomb making and large quantities of shrapnel were found in the factory, situated in the Old City market area. Palestinians threw a grenade and opened fire on the soldiers, and one member of Islamic Jihad was arrested, the spokesman said.”

If you read the Times, Israel was conducting a legitimate defensive operation to protect the lives of its citizens against terrorist preparations in the West Bank. If you read the Post, Nablus was a target of an Israeli raid and its citizens were barred from leaving their homes — for no discernible reason.

Actually, so inbred is the Post’s anti-Israel spin that it’s not confined to even the smallest news items, You can also find it in what the Post DOESN’T REPORT AT ALL. Omission of important developments is as symptomatic of the Post’s pro-Palestinian bent as what’s actually carried in the paper. Again, look at the Sunday, Feb. 25, editions of the Times and the Post.

In the Times, you will find a report that:

“two Qassam rocket were launched from the Gaza Strip in the direction of Israeli communities across the border…That brings the number of Qassam rockets launched from Gaza in the past week to 12, according to the Israeli army, despite a cease-fire that was declared in November.”

What did the Post report? NOTHING. And with the Post, that’s par for the course. Since …the Gaza cease-fire [between Israel and the Palestinians was signed] in November, Palestinians have kept up an incessant, daily barrage of rockets aimed at …Israeli towns and kibbutzim in southern Israel (At the start of the cease-fire, Abbas gave Olmert his personal guarantee that ALL Palestinian factions would desist from further Qassam attacks — so much for Abbas as a reliable peace negotiator). Since Israel dismantled all its settlements and pulled out from Gaza in the summer of 2005, more than ONE THOUSAND rockets have been fired from Gaza, with some hitting their Israeli targets and all of them terrorizing local populations when sirens give only a few seconds notice of an incoming strike.

Yet, the Post has studiously abstained from reporting these grossly provocative and aggressive Palestinian actions. It is only when Israel, after demonstrating the kind of forbearance and restraint that no other country would show under similar circumstances, finally takes defensive actions that the Post shows any interest — and then only to leave readers with the impression that Israel might be overreacting!

Go to EyeOnThePost.org for the original posting.

Questions

Which type of bias best describes reports by the Washington Post on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?


Scroll down to the bottom of the page for the answers.
























Answer(s)

The Washington Post’s reporting on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is an example of bias by omission.