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News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

January 16, 2003


"MIDEAST MEDIA STORM"


"The following 'Honest Reporting Communique' presents a view on the issue of imbalanced reporting in the context of the current Palestinian-Arab-Israeli war.

For IsReally readers, it will come as no surprise that the media industry has sold itself out to the worst elements in Palestinian society. For anyone not familiar with this kind of unethical journalism, it should be an eye-opener."
[...]Seaman says: "The editorial boards got the message and replaced their people."

The four news organization denied that the reassignments were related to GPO pressure. Ha'aretz reports that Andrew Steele, BBC Jerusalem bureau chief, lashed back by asking BBC London to boycott Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's bureau. Steele has reportedly decided not to ask Sharon's people for comments or reactions, because of what he says is the government's refusal to give press accreditation to Palestinians employed by the BBC.

To put things into perspective, HonestReporting readers should recall the words of Fayad Abu Shamala, BBC's correspondent in Gaza for the past 10 years, who spoke at a Hamas rally in Gaza: "Journalists and media organizations [are] waging the campaign shoulder-to-shoulder together with the Palestinian people."

Seaman says that Palestinians who work with the media attend a course in media manipulation at Bir Zeit University, and exercise control over information flow. He says: "The Palestinians let the foreign journalists understand: if you don't work with our people we'll sever contact with you, you won't have access to sources of information and you won't get interviews."
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