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Wed, July 20, 2011 | | By Rob Harris

Basic untruths and omissions in the mainstream media aid Palestinianism

A new video by Israel’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Danny Ayalon, called “Israel Palestinian Conflict: The Truth About the West Bank” makes a number of good points about the basic divergence between simple well established facts on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and how they are reported. This issue has a profound impact on the debate.

The clip alludes to the point that the mainstream media continually forwards certain basic fabrications of the historical record. It is clear these fabrications lend a great deal of legitimacy to Palestinianism.

Worth mentioning as well is the media’s twisted account of the history of the conflict found in virtually every news article on the subject of Jerusalem. Revealingly, the coverage by Associated Press, the BBC, and other mainstream news outlets, commonly include a paragraph on past conflict over Jerusalem. For some reason the failure to even briefly mention Jerusalem’s status before the 1967 Six Day War, when Israel took over the eastern side of the City from Jordan, is consistent. One example is

Israel seized east Jerusalem in the 1967 Six Day War, annexed the ancient city, and established the nation’s capital there. The international community, however, does not recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and embassies in the country have based themselves in Tel Aviv.

After the British Mandate had ended in 1948, Jordan occupied what is now commonly called “Arab East Jerusalem” in the 1948-49 War. This occurred at a time when Jerusalem had in fact been a Jewish majority city for a long time, due in part to its importance to the Jewish faith. The Jordanians expelled the Jewish populace and handed their land and much of their property over to the Palestinians. Furthermore Israel in actual fact “seized” the city in a defensive war that they fought on three fronts (Syria, Egypt and Jordan). It cannot be a coincidence that the mainstream media in its many reports on Jerusalem fail to mention any of these points in Israel’s favour.

Danny Ayalon adds that the so-called “occupied territory” or “OPT” of the West Bank is in fact a disputed territory similar to other territories like Western Sahara and Kashmir. The West Bank cannot truly be considered occupied, in part because the League of Nations ruling on the area allows Jewish habitation throughout Palestine, and partly because it was not previously under the domain of a legitimate sovereign. Jordan’s annexation of the territory in 1950 was only accepted by two other nations and the State renounced any claim over the area in 1987.

Another interesting point is the fact that the Arab parties in the conflict insisted that the 1949 Armistice line would have no political significance. In effect it does not have the status of being an international border. It is worthwhile to add that today many countries, for example numerous states in South America, affirm recognition of a Palestinian state on those very borders. However, UN Resolution 242 (1967) recognises the present Israeli borders until such time as a peace deal is achieved. It does not call for full withdrawal to the pre-1967 borders despite repeated claims to the contrary. As Eugene Rostow pointed out the wording refers to withdrawal not from “all territories” but unspecified territories whilst ensuring Israeli security.

It is odd that many are hopelessly uninformed about the conflict despite the fact that it features heavily (perhaps excessively) in the media today. Clearly a two-state solution is the desired outcome of a peace process where the Palestinians get the vast majority of the West Bank and all of Gaza, with some land swaps as were agreed by both parties during the previously attempted peace solutions. However, the impact of the all too common propagandistic distortions of the basic historic record by the mainstream media is damaging. It feeds world-wide pro-Palestinianism and Arab/Palestinian militancy. It makes the limited opportunities of securing a just and lasting peace considerably harder.

This is the first video in the series “The Truth About…”. Watch the second video — titled “The Truth About The Peace Process” — here.

3 Comments to “Basic untruths and omissions in the mainstream media aid Palestinianism”

  1. Basic untruths and omissions in the mainstream media aid #Palestinianism | #Israel #Jordan #WestBank #Jerusalem

  2. avatar Elisabeth says:

    Basic untruths and omissions in the mainstream media aid #Palestinianism | #Israel #Jordan #WestBank #Jerusalem

  3. […] is the second in the series, following on from the first video “Israel Palestinian Conflict: The Truth About the West Bank”. […]


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