A New Narrative on Israel-Palestine

Friday, July 11, 2014

Transcript

The latest surge of violence in the Gaza Strip and Israel was fueled by a horrific series of events involving Israeli and Palestinian teenagers. Brooke talks with Philip Weiss, co-editor of Mondoweiss, about coverage of these recent events, and how the view of the conflict is shifting in the media. 

Guests:

Philip Weiss

Hosted by:

Brooke Gladstone

Comments [54]

sam from New York

Angry Black Woman continued...
You do not get to justify the calculated and deliberate bombings, beatings, and lynchings of Jewish men, women, and children by referring to such heinous occurrences as part of a noble “uprising” of the oppressed—that is racism. It is evil.

• You do not get to pretend as though you and Rosa Parks would have been great buddies in the 1960s. Rosa Parks was a real Freedom Fighter. Rosa Parks was a Zionist.

Coretta Scott King was a Zionist.

A. Phillip Randolph was a Zionist.

Bayard Rustin was a Zionist.

Count Basie was a Zionist.

Dr. Martin Luther King Sr. was a Zionist.

Indeed, they and many more men and women signed a letter in 1975 that stated: “We condemn the anti-Jewish blacklist. We have fought too long and too hard to root out discrimination from our land to sit idly while foreign interests import bigotry to America. Having suffered so greatly from such prejudice, we consider most repugnant the efforts by Arab states to use the economic power of their newly-acquired oil wealth to boycott business firms that deal with Israel or that have Jewish owners, directors, or executives, and to impose anti-Jewish preconditions for investments in this country.”

You see, my people have always been Zionists because my people have always stood for the freedom of the oppressed. So, you most certainly do not get to culturally appropriate my people’s history for your own. You do not have the right to invoke my people’s struggle for your shoddy purposes and you do not get to feign victimhood in our name. You do not have the right to slander my people’s good name and link your cause to that of Dr. King’s. Our two causes are diametrically opposed to each other.

Your cause is the antithesis of freedom. It has cost hundreds of thousands of lives of both Arabs and Jews. It has separated these peoples, and has fomented animosity between them. It has led to heartache, torment, death and destruction.

It is of course your prerogative to continue to utilize platitudes for your cause. You are entirely within your rights to chant words like “equality” “justice” and “freedom fighter.”

You can keep using those words for as long as you like. But I do not think you know what they mean.

Chloe Valdary is a consultant for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America and a fellow at the Lawfare Project.

Aug. 07 2014 02:42 AM
sam from New York

Letter From an Angry Black Woman

‘You do not have the right to invoke my people’s struggle for your shoddy purposes’

By Chloe Valdary

The student organization Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is prominent on many college campuses, preaching a mantra of “Freeing Palestine.” It masquerades as though it were a civil rights group when it is not. Indeed, as an African-American, I am highly insulted that my people’s legacy is being pilfered for such a repugnant agenda. It is thus high time to expose its agenda and lay bare some of the fallacies they peddle.

• If you seek to promulgate the legacy of early Islamic colonialists who raped and pillaged the Middle East, subjugated the indigenous peoples living in the region, and foisted upon them a life of persecution and degradation—you do not get to claim the title of “Freedom Fighter.”

• If you support a racist doctrine of Arab supremacism and wish (as a corollary of that doctrine) to destroy the Jewish state, you do not get to claim that the prejudices you peddle are forms of legitimate “resistance.”

• If your heroes are clerics who sit in Gaza plotting the genocide of a people; who place their children on rooftops in the hopes they will get blown to bits; who heap praises upon their fellow gang members when they succeed in murdering Jewish school boys and bombing places of activity where Jews congregate—you do not get to claim that you are some Apollonian advocate of human virtue. You are not.

• If your activities include grieving over the woefully incompetent performance by Hamas rocketeers and the subsequent millions of Jewish souls who are still alive—whose children were not murdered by their rockets; whose limbs were not torn from them; and whose disembowelment did not come into fruition—you do not get to claim that you stand for justice. You profess to be irreproachable. You are categorically not.

• If your idea of a righteous cause entails targeting and intimidating Jewish students on campus, arrogating their history of exile-and-return and fashioning it in your own likeness you do not get to claim that you do so in the name of civil liberty and freedom of expression.

• You do not get to champion regimes that murder, torture, and persecute their own people, deliberately keep them impoverished, and embezzle billions of dollar from them—and claim you are “pro-Arab.” You are not.

• You do not get to champion a system wherein Jews are barred from purchasing land, traveling in certain areas, and living out such an existence merely because they are Jews—and claim that you are promoting equality for all. You do not get to enable that system by pushing a boycott of Jewish owned businesses, shops, and entities—and then claim that you are “against apartheid.” That is evil.

Aug. 07 2014 02:38 AM
Bob from Boston

Is this a NEW narrative?

Seems I've been hearing it for years

Jul. 23 2014 12:32 PM
JH from Hudson Valley

This is the kind of biased reporting the "On the Media" is supposed to expose, not espouse. A sorry day for journalism and basic journalistic standards.

Jul. 21 2014 11:24 AM
A good idea

OTM blew it, and then blew it again.

The only way we can effect change is to write to the people who pay the bills. This week they announced Legalzoom.com, Vice News, WNYC, John D and Catherine T MacArthur Foundation, The Ford Foundation, The Jane Archer Foundation, The Overbrook Foundation, and your local NPR station.

Businesses and foundations care about image and radio stations care about listener donations. They would care that we do not approve of OTM's handling of the Weiss interview and that we want that OTM issue an apology and give equal time to debunking Weiss's weird revisionist views.

Jul. 20 2014 03:25 PM
Tom Roche from Carrboro, NC

I recalled the Zionist comments on this page when listening[1] to Glenn Greenwald on Democracy Now! this morning[2] regarding NBC's recent muzzling of Ayman Mohyeldin[3], the 2010 sacking of Octavia Nasr[4], and the US corporate-funded media's Mideast slant generally:

"I've gotten to know a lot of journalists, I've gotten to understand a lot more about how these large media outlets function, I've worked with some of them [...] It really is remarkable, and not hyperbole, that there is *nothing* that makes major media figures and news executives more petrified than reporting on Israel. The way in which they become so frightened to do any sort of reporting that could make what they call 'Israel supporters' inside the US angry really can't be overstated."[5]

"American media officials are incredibly subservient to American political officials, [but] when it comes to Israeli political officials, it's virtually cringe-inducing to watch how accomodating and deferential and submissive they become. [...] American media outlets play a very similar role when it comes to Israeli military operations as they played in run-up to the Iraq war[:] they give constant anonymity to any Israeli military or political official who requests it, they launder those claims without the slightest bit of skepticism expressed, and there's virtually never the other side presented, which is the views of the people living in those areas that are attacked by Israeli military aggression, or the politicians or the military officials who are in Gaza or [the] West Bank. It's incredibly one-sided, it's propagandistic, and it really is deliberate. It's so overwhelming and extreme[;] they barely even pretend to be even-handed in their coverage"[6]

As an occasional critic of OTM, I especially admire your courage in presenting the other side via the Weiss interview, as I suspect the Zionist pushback from within WNYC is even greater than that from the mob on this page! Both of which point to what is IMHO _real_ story and media-criticism issue, which perhaps someday you can cover: the "media theatre" of the American civil war between the great majority of US Jews (increasingly close to the views of, e.g., Greenwald, Amy Goodman, Philip Weiss) and the Neocon Axis of Evil uniting red-state goyim with US Jews like "the Witzs" (e.g., Alan Dershowitz, David Horowitz, Paul Wolfowitz) and their big-money backers (e.g., Sheldon Adelson, Haim Saban).

Tom Roche
Carrboro, NC

[1]: http://traffic.libsyn.com/democracynow/dn2014-0718-1.mp3, starting ~28:30
[2]: Main page=http://www.democracynow.org/2014/7/18/glenn_greenwald_why_did_nbc_pull which will likely (based on past performance) have a transcript later F 18 Jul 2014
[3]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayman_Mohyeldin
[4]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Octavia_Nasr
[5]: http://traffic.libsyn.com/democracynow/dn2014-0718-1.mp3, starting ~40:40
[6]: http://traffic.libsyn.com/democracynow/dn2014-0718-1.mp3, starting ~43:40

Jul. 18 2014 01:31 PM
Richard Moriarty from Welland

"A New Narrative on Israel-Palestine"
A new narrative might be new, as in no more good guys vs. bad guys. Your story wasn't, sorry.

Jul. 17 2014 07:19 PM
executive producer of OTM from NYC

we received this letter from Abraham Foxman, National Director of the Anti-Defamation League:

Dear Mr. Keefe:
Your recent segment, “A New Narrative on Israel-Palestine” (July 11) offered a classic example of the kind of “hidden agenda” journalism which On the Media is supposed to expose. The segment featured an interview by Host and Managing Editor Brooke Gladstone with Philip Weiss, claiming that the U.S. news media is giving more prominence and sympathy to the Palestinian perspective in the current crisis.
While only identified by Ms. Gladstone as the “co-editor of Mondoweiss.net, a news website covering American foreign policy in the Middle East from a progressive Jewish perspective,” Philip Weiss is in fact a longtime critic of Israel, whose website features a wide variety of anti-Israel themes, including claims of Israeli apartheid, ethnic cleansing and genocide. He is also a frequent speaker at anti-Israel programs and conferences across the United States.
Mr. Weiss has expressed opposition to Israel’s existence as a Jewish state and regularly compares the atrocities of the Holocaust to Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. He has accused Israel of abusing the memory of the Holocaust in order to justify the “endless mistreatment of Palestinians,” claimed that Israeli policy toward the Palestinians is an example of the “abused becoming the abuser” and described Israeli military action as reminiscent of “the run-up to the Second World War. Those Jews were persecuted; and these Palestinians were too.”
Mr. Weiss is no benign observer or commentator. Indeed, most of his positions would prove inimical to even the “progressive Jews” Ms. Gladstone claims he represents. His blatant, one-sided advocacy against Israel and its policies should have, at the very least, been identified, and another perspective been provided in the segment.
Surely your program would not have given unchallenged, unqualified air time to a hard-core denier of Palestinian nationalism.
We fully expect an on-air and online clarification from On the Media. May we hear from you on this?
Sincerely,

Abraham H. Foxman
National Director
Anti-Defamation League

Jul. 17 2014 03:48 PM

clarify 07/16/14 3:41AM
In 637 A.D.Umar, 2nd of the caliphs took Jerusalem from the Byzantine Christians. To Umar's credit he granted the Jews the right to live in Jerusalem ;he understood there was a strong historical and religious connection between Jews and the city(the Romans and Byzantines had for centuries forbidden Jews from residing there).But Umar kept the city and the rest of the country under Moslem control. Interesting to note that 23 years before Umar, in 614 A.D. the Persians (they were still Zoroastrians,Muslims conquered Persia 22 years later in636 A.D )helped the Jews(!)re-establish Jewish autonomy over the city . 15 years later the Byzantines re-took Jerusalem from the Jews.It would make peace more likely if the Arabs were to clearly reaffirm what Umar ,peace be unto him, understood- that the Jewish connection and claim to the land is ancient and continuous and should be treated with respect.
It is worth noting that Jews respect ,both by word and deed, Arab's claim to the land -over 1.6 million Arabs live in Israel that's about 20% of a total population of 8.2 million. Israeli Arabs have 12 representatives in the Knesset, one of Magistrates on the Israeli Supreme Court is an Arab, another served on the 3 judge panel that convicted(!) the former President of Israel Moshe Katsav.Arabic is an official language of Israel, along with Hebrew.
Public signs stamps, currency are in Arabic and Hebrew.
I'm optimistic in the long run because both peoples have wisdom traditions that teach life is more important than land. Many Arabs believe that the sanctioning of wars, by the Koran and the Hadith, was only intended for the early years of Islam and these rules were never meant to be applied in modern times. As for the Israelis when they say Jewish state they mean a sanctuary for an endangered "species" namely the Jews without detriment to the other unendangered inhabitants. Just as people understand that a "wild life preserve" for elephants is not exclusively for elephants but includes other unendangered animals that are in no way disadvantaged living along side the elephants ,similarly Israel is a home for all of humanity .Except for hunters and creatures committed to preying upon or doing irreversible harm to the living .Yell lobby campaign but don't kill. "Sancta" means "holy place" in Latin; nothing is more holy than protecting endangered human beings. What makes Israel a "Holy Land" is its people's commitment to helping the truly endangered including Jews .If I continually hit someone and he hits me back in return to defend himself than I am in danger but not endangered because I brought the attack upon myself .But if someone wants to summarily murder me ,just because I'm me and alive ,with out questions asked and with no hesitation ,than I am endangered and require sanctuary. All are welcome in Israel -except the hunters.

Jul. 16 2014 11:41 PM
Eileen McD Helms from Birmingham, Alabama

Brooke, thank you for having Philip Weiss on and letting us hear a voice/narrative/viewpoint rarely presented in the American media. This is exactly the purpose of your show, to examine how the media shapes the news it carries - or chooses not to carry. The media message on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has long depicted both sides as equal partners when in reality one is a First World occupying force and the other an occupied people without a state to advocate for them. I have always believed that the American people, if given the facts of a situation, all of the facts, are a fair people and plump for the side of justice and mercy. I don't think mainstream America is going to continue much longer supporting aid to Israel when it finds out how much that amount is and what it is being used for.

Jul. 16 2014 05:23 PM

All humans maybe created equal but all cultures
are not. Arabs show you care;stop acting
murderously especially in the vicinity your own
families. Why murder those you consider
thieves? Theft is not a capital offense.

Try the following experiment concerning
the quality of your spiritual and material
lives. Try befriending Israel. Try it for seven
years. If this doesn't lead to improvement
you can always go back to militantcy'

Jul. 16 2014 03:41 AM
John Hurd

Thank you, On The Media, for telling it like it is: the mainstream media knows that it's "acceptable" to push the Arab/Muslim/Palestinian side of the story. Jews get killed by Arabs and the media looks the other way. Nothing to report. Then, when some Israelis strike back and kill a Muslim kid—unfortunate as that is—the media jumps up and down and hypes only the Arab/Muslim story.

It's a game, isn't it? And the media know exactly what the unspoken rules are. As Philip Weiss pointed out, Jews were nearly wiped out completely by the Nazis (who had willing helpers in European countries), and they have been killed for sport in places like Russia over many decades. They needed a safe home where Jews were the majority and Israel is it. Jews seem to be one of the few groups everyone thinks it's fun to push around. Meanwhile, Jews don't stone their women to death for getting raped or for adultery. Israeli women go to school. There are no crazy Jewish groups that burn down schools for girls. They work, they vote. The big picture is the big picture: Muslims do sick, cruel things to each other. The Arab nations hardly get along with each other, but somehow, Israel is the big bad wolf. Keep playing your games, media types.

Jul. 15 2014 05:40 PM
norm from NYC

I am a long term fan of On the Media, one of the jewels of public radio Phillip Weiss has been a virulent enemy of all aspects of the state of Israel for years, a militant "anti-zionist." . Though he calls his organization a "Progressive Jewish" voice, he has as much connection with most Jewish opinion as Jews for Jesus in his knee-jerk loathing of the Jewish state. Despite Weiss' statements on one-sided media, the New York Times, the most respected news source in the US takes a consistently pro=-Palestinian stance, and always champions the Palestinian narrative. In the interest of fairness you should balance Weiss' vision with a voice from the other side in what is a terrible and tragic war.

http://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-news-and-politics/56447/mondo-weiss

Jul. 15 2014 08:37 AM

OTM thank you for having the courage to present a more critical point of view on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Those who are posting negative comments are unfortunately blinded by their own zionism, an expansionist ideology that seeks to push Palestinians out of the lands they live in to create a Jewish only state. Unfortunately, we are living the the 21st century and the international community will not stand for this form of colonialism to flourish under our watch. That is why the BDS movement is gaining momentum and Netanyahu has grown so desparate. For those of you who are American and call yourselves liberal, shame on you for not recognizing apartheid when you see it. The US government built settler only roads in the West Bank that link settlements to 1948 Israel, and has enabled Israel to torture and collectively punish Palestinians for long enough. Currently, 75% of the casualties are civilian, 1/3 are children, underscoring that this is not a war against Hamas, it is a war against Palestinian civilians. In addition, those who think that Gaza has been "free" since 2005 have no idea what has actually happened, mostly due to pro-Israel coverage in the US, which is the norm. Israel has kept Gaza from controlling its water and air space and even resorted to restricting the inflow of calories into the strip assuring it didn't starve but also assuring that it didn't have free flow access to food without the black market that flourishes in the tunnels. These stories are covered in the Israeli press, but not the American. This is an information war. Phillip Weiss is one of many brave activists who are Jewish American and Israeli protesting the occupation. Weiss certainly deserves a voice on NPR.
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/2-279-calories-per-person-how-israel-made-sure-gaza-didn-t-starve.premium-1.470419

Jul. 14 2014 05:27 PM

OTM thank you for having the courage to present a more critical point of view on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Those who are posting negative comments are unfortunately blinded by their own zionism, an expansionist ideology that seeks to push Palestinians out of the lands they live in to create a Jewish only state. Unfortunately, we are living the the 21st century and the international community will not stand for this form of colonialism to flourish under our watch. That is why the BDS movement is gaining momentum and Netanyahu has grown so desparate. For those of you who are American and call yourselves liberal, shame on you for not recognizing apartheid when you see it. The US government built settler only roads in the West Bank that link settlements to 1948 Israel, and has enabled Israel to torture and collectively punish Palestinians for long enough. Currently, 75% of the casualties are civilian, 1/3 are children, underscoring that this is not a war against Hamas, it is a war against Palestinian civilians. In addition, those who think that Gaza has been "free" since 2005 have no idea what has actually happened, mostly due to pro-Israel coverage in the US, which is the norm. Israel has kept Gaza from controlling its water and air space and even resorted to restricting the inflow of calories into the strip assuring it didn't starve but also assuring that it didn't have free flow access to food without the black market that flourishes in the tunnels. These stories are covered in the Israeli press, but not the American. This is an information war. Phillip Weiss is one of many brave activists who are Jewish American and Israeli protesting the occupation. Weiss certainly deserves a voice on NPR.
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/2-279-calories-per-person-how-israel-made-sure-gaza-didn-t-starve.premium-1.470419

Jul. 14 2014 05:27 PM
Norman from Memphis TN

NPR again proves why it is referred to as National Palestinian Radio

Jul. 14 2014 12:30 PM
mcn

Those who wrote in support of the piece, are missing the point. The interview purported to propose one idea pertaining to coverage, while using the platform to issue various questionable claims and innuendos on other tangential topics; all without challenge from the interviewer. Additionally, the interview was introduced in an unbalanced way that contributes to the interviewees POV. (See other comments on this page for details.)

Even if you are somehow able buy into the interview's narrative, you must agree that he was given a platform and allowed to espouse his views without challenge, opposing POV or fact checking. To respond by praising his content, means that you are more invested in his position than you are in honest debate or the integrity of organizations such as OTM.

Jul. 14 2014 12:08 PM
ori from Manhattan

The blood ,of Palestinian children, cry out from the earth " Why did our elders sacrifice our lives for a dispute
over land ? Is the earth not broad enough to accommodate all the living.? Why couldn't you accept the Jews?

Jul. 14 2014 12:47 AM
Sam from New York

Many Arab citizens of Israel are grateful that they are not living in Lebanon, Syria ,Iraq, Egypt,Libya,Algeria, Tunisia,
Yemen or any of the Arab/Islamic countries where thuggish "governments"crush their people without pity. The history of Islam tells of The Four Rightly Guided Caliphs who succeeded Mohammed.These caliphs took Islam
beyond the Arabian peninsula to the rest of the Middle East and North Africa- on a river of blood - none of these Rightly Guided died a natural death; they were murdered while in office by their rebellious co-religionists. Islam was spread by conquest and cares little for compromise because it rarely had to compromise.On the other hand the Jews a small minority lived largely by compromise.
Israel take care of yourself. Can you afford to give advance notice of an attack to people who hand out candies in celebration of the of a human being's suffering or death? Your adversary is guided by the belief that all the world must come under the rule of Islam. They wish to murder you without regret. Israel do not negotiate with the Arabs
while they are teaching their children to hate you. Only talk to them when they teach their children that the Hebrew claim to Israel is historically understandable and that Israelis are not demons for asserting their claim. We Arabs have 21 countries surely the generosity that Islam teaches us would allow for another people to live beside us in
peace in their own land.

Jul. 14 2014 12:00 AM
Chris from New York

I was astounded -- and delighted -- to hear this excellent piece today. You broke what seems like a long-standing taboo at NPR and other major media outlets in the US and actually talked about how dehumanizing of the Palestinians most "mainstream" media coverage in the US is of this issue.

Of course there is a hard core out there convinced that any news outlet that acknowledges in even the most token manner the humanity of the Palestinians is hopelessly biased against Israel. They are well represented in the comments here. But the truth is quite different. As a supporter of the Palestinian liberation struggle I think NPR's coverage of the Israeli Palestinian conflict is almost always terrible and I don't know a single Palestinian or Palestinian solidarity activist who doesn't consider NPR one of the most consistently anti-Palestinian news outlets around.

So this was a welcome breath of fresh air, though I am sure you are catching hell for it.

His astute dissections of so much reporting on the conflict make Weiss a lightning rod for Israel's apologists. The accusations of anti-Semitism against him are ludicrous. (It is true that he used to be slow to remove anti-Semitic comments by others from his blog, but this is no longer the case and in any event reflected a misplaced libertarianism on his part rather than any sympathy for those views.) He is a highly perceptive critic of what he regards as the American Jewish community's blindness to Palestinian suffering and the pieties he thinks enable that blindness. But somebody in your office probably already knows that, otherwise he wouldn't have been invited on as a guest.

As past experience suggests that the freak-out in response to your piece goes well beyond the comments here and that there are undoubtedly lots of calls being made to your superiors to extract a retraction or some sort of compensatory gesture of contrition, I would urge you to do a follow up report on THAT, comparing the sort of pressure you are likely now getting to the critical response to other stories you have run.

Jul. 13 2014 09:32 PM

Too many of my fellow American Jews operate with a double standard -- especially many of the commentators here. Had this story been about blacks and whites in America, all of the commentators would be outraged. But these same so-called liberals, or progressives, chose to hide from the reality of the terror that Israel has been inflicting on the Palestinians. My guess is that their judgement is clouded by some distorted idea of Zionism or Judaism. Exactly like HAMAS and the Taliban.

Jul. 13 2014 06:46 PM
NessieG from new york

No, the MSM is not biased in favor of Israel, and to say so positions the Palestinians as the eternal victims. Brooke Gladstone gives free rein to an Israel-hating blogger, omitting entirely the context of Palestinian violence and incitement against Israeli civilians and police. Shame on OTM for exploiting the boy's story to propagate the false narrative making Israel the bad guy.

Jul. 13 2014 06:39 PM
Janyce C. Katz from Columbus, Ohio

While I usually enjoy your program, I was disappointed with the slant of this particular piece. The Gaza issue is not one of occupancy of Israel causing the residents to resort to rockets and violence. The settlements and the Jewish presence went out of Gaza when Sharon still headed the country. He has been dead for a while now. So, with the settlements gone, it is not the occupation of Gaza by Israel that has caused Hamas to send rockets into Israel. It is something else that also leads to Hamas initiating bombs and rockets and explosions without first making sure the Gaza population is safe. Israel warns before bombing, but Hamas just sends rockets or suicide bombers into Israel. Only great precautions have prevented deaths. As to deaths in Palestine, why do people, having been told Israel would bomb in a few minutes, stay in their houses or call neighbors to help protect the houses by going to the roof? On July 13, the NYTimes reported that Hamas encouraged Gaza residents to ignore Israeli messages to evacuate, arguing it was only propaganda. Why would Hamas tell their people to stay in areas where Israel promised bombs? But, no one asks those questions. Nor do they ask why Hamas doesn’t warn Israel before lobbing rockets at its cities. The justification seems to be that Israel has bomb shelters and warning sirens, but Hamas had to spend its money on bombs, and could not afford shelters. And, no one asks why Israel, if its goal is to destroy the people in Gaza, lets trucks of necessary supplies into the area instead of totally strangling the country. The worldview about Israel is in even before it acts, it is guilty of crimes. It cannot protect itself in the same manner as would other nations if attacked by a neighbor calling itself a separate, independent country. Imagine if Mexico or Cuba lobbed missiles at Texas ( which the US took from Mexico after the 1848 war). Would the US not have a right to protect the state and its people?
And, while Israel, in fact the entire Jewish world mourns the loss of even one innocent life, the loss of the potential of that person, in Gaza and in the West Bank, squares are named after those who have “martyred” themselves by blowing up in Israeli restaurants and on Israeli buses. But, in the news reporting, the deaths, like the flying bombs, are also balanced.

Hamas retains its goal of destroying Israel totally. That fact did not make it into today's story. Does Israel not have the right to exist? According to Hamas, no, as all the land on which it sits is "occupied." Is this what your commentator was trying to say and what your commentator agreed with? If yes, it is as wrong as praising the Nazis for emptying Lodz Ghetto of Jews and sending them to the gas chambers of Auschwitz seventy years ago this month.

Jul. 13 2014 05:20 PM
Lisa from NYC

This segment pretty much proves the contention that NPR's coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is biased against Israel.Mondoweiss as an analyst of media coverage of the issue? I'll find it difficult to trust the accuracy of any of your reports in the future.

Jul. 13 2014 05:06 PM
Lisa from NYC

This segment pretty much proves the contention that NPR's coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is biased against Israel.Mondoweiss as an analyst of media coverage of the issue? I'll find it difficult to trust the accuracy of any of your reports in the future.

Jul. 13 2014 05:05 PM
Dennis

The segment presented a view suggesting that US media may be shifting its traditional very pro-Israel coverage, which would, all things considered, be a step forward.
This comment column is something else. Weiss and indeed, your interviewer and the whole show are attacked ("disgusting," "deranged," "distorted,""doubtful"'--and that's just the "d"s) with real passion, but without much effort to address Weiss's point. In an odd way that seems to confirm his thesis. Many of those writing in seem so shocked at what they've heard that they are plugging their ears and, instead of saying "neener, neener," they are chanting "anti-semite, anti-semite."

Jul. 13 2014 04:39 PM
Harriet Glasman from Knoxville, TN

I am so angry, that my hands are shaking. NPR has always slanted against Israel in these stories, and this one was the pinnacle! This story was what NPR reporting has subtly attempted for years and years, and today it was clear as a bell. Other letters have said what I would say, but I just want to clarify that Israeli police arrested the suspects in the murder of the Arab boy within days!! The President, Peres, and PM Netanyahu expressed condolences and outrage over this murder. However, Hamas began rocketing Israel as far inland as Tel Aviv and Haifa. You didn't mention that fact. Also GAZA IS NOT OCCUPIED BY ISRAEL. IT HAS IT'S OWN GOVERNMENT!

Jul. 13 2014 01:32 PM
David from Monsey, NY

Could you tell us something as to the process through which Philip Weiss was chosen as guest media analyst on today's "On The Media" show, with no disclosure to listeners that even amongst many progressive voices, he is considered a propagandist with no credibility? (Even if one AGREES with his perspective, there is no doubt from looking at his website that he is in every sense a propagandist. Aside from why a "media watchdog" show select him as their expert interviewee, why would his being a propagandist not be disclosed to your listeners?)

(Five minutes of Googling will find articles even from progressive Jews, pointing to all the hallmarks of antisemitism, including holocaust denial and it will also show his record as an apologist for the Palestinian cause.

So, again, why was this man chosen for this "On The Media" story, why did he go unchallenged, and why was there no disclosure to readers as to his very controversial standing? (Again, no honest person, even one who agrees with him, would not consider him a propagandist.)

Jul. 13 2014 01:24 PM
Eric JB from Philadelphia

Let's analyze your story the way you might.

1. Towards the beginning, you (Brooke) mention the kidnap and murder of "three Israeli teenagers" (I'm going by memory here, but you didn't mention any names", followed by the (truly abominable) kidnap and murder of one Palestinian teenager, but HIS name you mention.

So, you give the Palestinian victim a name, but the Israelis are nameless - just a number.

2. Towards the end, the main speaker first raises a red herring by choosing to describe a favorable view of Israel by someone's memory of a 1967 Life Magazine cover with a "beautiful suntanned Isreali soldier" (so much for feminism) sunning himself on a tank after having beaten back the Egyptians after Israel saved its national existence by beating back five Arab armies. He then says something about "setting aside the parts of that narrative that are questionable".

So, he introduces some vague but fundamental doubt into the one portion of his entire story that's supposed to represent the "favorable" view of Israel - which is a silly exaggeration in the first place, as if Israel is made yup of a bunch of narcissistic fashion plates with big muscles and no brains.

These are the tiny tools of bias that becomes asymmetrical reporting. Given the depth of your analytical abilities, why did you let them pass into a broadcast under your name?

Jul. 13 2014 01:19 PM
Eric JB from Philadelphia

Let's analyze your story the way you might.

1. Towards the beginning, you (Brooke) mention the kidnap and murder of "three Israeli teenagers" (I'm going by memory here, but you didn't mention any names", followed by the (truly abominable) kidnap and murder of one Palestinian teenager, but HIS name you mention.

So, you give the Palestinian victim a name, but the Israelis are nameless - just a number.

2. Towards the end, the main speaker first raises a red herring by choosing to describe a favorable view of Israel by someone's memory of a 1967 Life Magazine cover with a "beautiful suntanned Isreali soldier" (so much for feminism) sunning himself on a tank after having beaten back the Egyptians after Israel saved its national existence by beating back five Arab armies. He then says something about "setting aside the parts of that narrative that are questionable".

So, he introduces some vague but fundamental doubt into the one portion of his entire story that's supposed to represent the "favorable" view of Israel - which is a silly exaggeration in the first place, as if Israel is made yup of a bunch of narcissistic fashion plates with big muscles and no brains.

These are the tiny tools of bias that becomes asymmetrical reporting. Given the depth of your analytical abilities, why did you let them pass into a broadcast under your name?

Jul. 13 2014 01:18 PM
Mark from Texas

What a disgusting piece today on the show - trying to make the Palestinians the victims to absolve them over the murder of the 3 boys and change the narrative to only focus on the murder of one of their kids and beating of another. I didn't hear a story over these folks encouraging their kids to show a "3 finger salute" to mark the kidnapping of the 3 Israeli teens.

Tariq (the one beaten) is an american? He could barely speak english - "they beat me to sleep" = unconscious? And I am CERTAIN he never did a thing to provoke (laugh)

Palestinians will never get anywhere until they realize that Israel is here to stay.

Jul. 13 2014 12:06 PM
Michiganjf

Thank you!
Israel has managed to em-battle the U.S. media so heavily, that the Israeli occupation of Gaza never gets put into an objective perspective... the moment any media outlet or person denounces the Israeli occupation, or how Palestinians are treated by Israel (the State, not all Israelis, obviously), they are branded as anti-semitic by the Israeli propaganda machine.

Thank you for being courageous in your search for objectivity!

Jul. 13 2014 11:03 AM
K from NYC

A truly great segment. Good work NPR and Brooke for providing context and an informed guest.

Jul. 13 2014 10:58 AM
Lenny from Brooklyn

I find it extremely unfortunate and misguided that you chose to give a platform to a self-decribed "Anti-Zionist" who then proceeded to provided a completely unbalanced view of the middle east crisis, with no challenges whatsoever from Ms. Gladstone. This was a totally biased, one-sided view of a very complex situation. This segment is an embarrassment to OTM.

Jul. 13 2014 10:48 AM
MCN

On the Media this week showed itself as hypocritical, biased, and incompetent, by allowing a guest to espouse an obviously lopsided point of view of doubtful veracity and of tangential relevance to the subject of the interview, without opposing point of view and without fact checking. This is the sort of gross misrepresentation and slight of hand of which OTM claims to be our reportage and safeguard. OTM failed to meet the minimum standards of journalism and so becomes a crude parody of fox and limbaugh.

Jul. 13 2014 10:44 AM
Zeke from New Jersey

It's unbelievable that a program which claims to monitor the media can have such a one-sided segment. A cursory glance of the mondoweiss site will show you that it's basically an anti-Israel blog. Either somebody didn't do his homework, or On The Media a is not as reputable as they would like us to believe. Not that it is wrong to ever criticize Israel, but this site is blatantly anti-Israel, rarely criticizing Palestinians for anything. I love this show and I truly hope this was an oversight. But for some reason I doubt On The Media would ever make the mistake of having a right-winger on their show, let alone an extremist.

Jul. 13 2014 10:40 AM
Dept. of Contrition

In case anybody wondered where Jewish Hard Line fundamentalists rabbis stand on how the Jewish settlers killed the ARab teenager last week:

Israeli head rabbis call for death penalty

http://www.jpost.com/Jewish-World/Jewish-News/Rabbi-calls-for-death-penalty-for-Abu-Khdeirs-murderers-361778

(Thanks to news.google.com for enabling us to get a bigger picture than BBC and its sycophants. )

Jul. 13 2014 08:55 AM
GQ Lewis from Atlanta

It is appalling how the Palestinians are treated by the Israeli government. An American peace activist (Rachel Corrie from Charlotte, NC) was run over by a bulldozer in an attempt to stop the demolishment of Palestinian homes and the expansion of Jewish settlements. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUoZGnvZwNY

God has a very special place in hell for these monsters. His retribution will be severe and just. I see very little difference in the way Germans treated Jews in WW2 than in the way Israelis treat Palestinians since the creation of the new Jewish state. One day, these tables will turn and I expect to see no mercy from the Palestinians in return. You can only turn the cheek so many times.

I am especially sadden that my country (the U.S.) seems to have a blind loyalty to the Jewish state. If it were the Russian state (or your country of choice) exhibiting this type of behavior upon one of its neighbors, we would resoundingly condemn it. We will be held accountable as well for our funding, arming, and support for the systematic destruction of so many lives. May God have mercy on us.

Jul. 13 2014 06:08 AM
Kilian Metcalf

If journalists like Mr Weiss are no longer interested in 'going into what's true and what's not true' what is left? I guess he answered his own question earlier when he talked about how when there is a new narrative with a strong story journalists will jump on it. It doesn't matter whether it's true or not, only whether it's a good story. Journalism as a subset of fiction. Sad.

Jul. 13 2014 01:17 AM
"Progressive Jew Watch"

(Slightly) curious as to whether your "Progressive Jewish" guest agrees with the Progressive Palestinian position, as articulated by protestors from NYC to San Francisco, "Freedom from River to Sea."

Jul. 12 2014 08:44 PM
Pat from East Cleveland, Ohio

Thanks to OTM for remaining my favorite radio show because of your succinct analysis of our media.

Jul. 12 2014 07:09 PM
2 wrongs…

Literally hundreds of Muslim women, children and combatants were killed since July 1 in Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Ethopia and Uganda (mostly by Muslim "Freedom Fighters") -- and not a media blip.

Iranian rockets have been directed toward Israeli civilians for months from Palestinian territories and now Lebanon -- no blip

Jews in Israel and around the world are rightfully horrified and contrite that Israel produced a couple of terrorists who committed their revengeful crimes in the name of Judaism. Fortunately those criminals are behind bars for breaking Israeli Law, Jewish Laws, and the Laws of Humanity.

Israelis and Jews must never forget that they have earned the position of being judged at a much higher standard of moral and civil conduct. Fortunately, they never do.

Jul. 12 2014 06:31 PM
R Slone from Chicago

Brooke,

This segment is completely one-sided and unfair, using only the words of one biased interviewee. Repeating that Hamas in Gaza is firing rockets into Israel "because of the occupation" is simply repeating a lie. As you and Philip Weiss well know, Israel moved its troops - and all its civilian residents - completely out of Gaza in 2005: NINE YEARS AGO. There is no occupation.

A smaller lie: that Hamas and other Gaza jihadists didn't begin firing rockets at Israeli civilians until after the recent deaths of the Israeli and Palestinian teens. Also provably untrue.

Please balance your coverage of this issue if you wish to retain the respect of your listeners.

R Slone

Jul. 12 2014 04:26 PM

Thank you. It is rare to hear such a balanced examination on the reporting on the reporting by our media.

Jul. 12 2014 04:22 PM
Steven Fake from Washington D.C.

Very good to see NPR opening up the typically very narrow range of opinion allowed in the establishment media. These openings in the propaganda system are very important. Good for On The Media.

Jul. 12 2014 04:21 PM

Thank you. It is rare to hear such a balanced examination on the reporting on the reporting my our media.

Jul. 12 2014 04:18 PM
M

When I hear On the Media doing a segment on Israel, I expect it to have to be highly critical of Israeli policies, but this segment was truly disgusting. Under the guise of talking about the "reporting" of the situation rather than the situation itself Ms. Gladstone and her guest proceed to talk about the beating of Tariq Abu Khdeir without mentioning that the officer responsible for the beating is facing criminal charges. This omission gives the impression that the Israeli police operate with impunity, which is false, as the officer responsible is being charged. Then Ms. Gladstone mentions the number of Palestinian minors detained; the implication is that they are all beaten or somehow mistreated, another falsehood. Finally, regardless of Mr. Weiss's opinion on the Mavi Marmara, to simply refer it as a "Turkish relief ship" is deeply misleading. The Mavi Marmara attempted to run the Israeli blockade of Gaza. While there is some dispute, the UN found that blockade to be legal. This segment could really benefit from a follow up in which On the Media fact checks the claims and innuendo made by Mr. Weiss.

Jul. 12 2014 02:35 PM
Lew from Boston

I'm not convinced that the mainstream media is opening up its reporting on Palestine and Israel in a fundamental way. I wish I could be as encouraged as Mr. Weiss is about the implications of the reporting he references but I still believe that the dominant narrative of "Israel good and Palestine terrorist" commands the attention of the media's owners and their editorial policies.

However, I truly appreciate On the Media's attention to this issue. Last night as I attended a spirited "Anti Occupation/Stop the Assault on Gaza" rally, I was heartened by the friendly response of most passersby in Boston's Copley Square. Aside from a few (very few) familiar "Israel good and Palestine terrorist" complainers, people were open to our message. Perhaps as Mr. Weiss suggests, some in the media are willing to entertain a different narrative and perhaps that opening will allow the public to see those of us who are opposed to the occupation, settlement expansion, and the slaughter of innocents in Gaza, as something more than "anti-semitic, haters".

Jul. 12 2014 02:09 PM
ruth from Denver

You and your guest seem to have overlooked the American and two Jewish teenagers slaughter by Palestine Jihadists that percipitated this latest violence. Always biased and antisemitic media "reporting" by On the Media.

Jul. 12 2014 11:08 AM
Dale from Australia

Thanks OTM for posting an informative piece on the way the Israel/Palestine conflict is viewed by American media. This potentially shifting perspective might enable a broader, more informed debate on the matters at hand, rather than the shrieking irrationality that stains the potentially humane legacy of the respective religions, and keeps weapons in the hands of maniacs.

Jul. 12 2014 10:33 AM
Marsha from NJ

Correction to my first sentence in my previous comment. It should read "I am deeply, deeply disturbed about this broadcast."

Jul. 12 2014 10:11 AM
Marsha from New Jersey

I am deeply, deeply disturbed in this broadcast. Not only is it unbalanced, it is distorted. It treats the situation like keeping score at a deranged sports event.

This is cheerleading for Israel-hating and vulgar journalism----"The NYT had a three-column photograph of Tariq Khdeir badly beaten and his face still badly swollen." Sounds more like the National Inquirer.

"I was so suprised and pleased to hear NPR's report by Daniel Estrin in which he quoted Tariq's mother, Suha, "Now I understand why Palestinians hate Israel." Brooke did not even challenge Philip Weiss on his slanted views. In fact, she seemed to egg him on, "Tell me more about mainstream media coverage [about this]," as if to say, "Let's hear more about the Israel-hating feeding frenzy in the media----yay----it's spreading onto Main Street."

Shame on OTM, shame on NPR and shame on Brooke.

Jul. 12 2014 10:09 AM
Valerie

Deeply disappointed in OTM for this segment. The coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is consistently skewed against Israel. I recommend you refer to Honest Reporting, which monitors and collects examples daily from the NY Times among others. I usually expect much more from your program.

Jul. 12 2014 07:25 AM
David Bernstein

Weiss's Mondoweiss is a boderline hate site, that not surprisingly attracts anti-Semitic commenters from both the extreme right and the extreme left. Shame on On the Media for giving him a platform, much less an exclusive one, as if he is some sort of neutral arbiter.

Jul. 11 2014 09:43 PM

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