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January 07, 1983 - Image 22

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1983-01-07

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

22 Friday, anuary 1, 1983

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

U.S. Media Held Hostage by PLO Anti-Semitism

,

(Coxittigeli from Page 1)
who a-idf 'that Arab babies
dying "is almost a daily
occurrence."
ABC's Tom Jarriel also
cited mysteriously high in-
fant mortality figures and,
not surprisingly, quoted

"Palestinian doctors" but
gave no evidence to bolster
his claim.
--
The murder of West
Bank infants is a "sensa-
tional'? construction but
one so easily demolished
by checking WHO figures
or other hospitals, Arab
or Israeli, that one is left
wondering at the pur-
pose of ABC's charges.
One might charitably
attribute this "story to gul-
libility and it is not difficult
to substantiate the premise
that Moslems in Ramallah
or Teheran or Beirut have
become quite skilled in ma-
nipulating American TV
"journalists." For months
during the hostage crisis,
highly-paid "anchormen"
revealed an insatiable
appetite for views of peas-
ants howling on demand at
the U.S. Embassy before
slinking back to their
hovels when the cameras
were gone.

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Yasir Arafat, a master of
the "howling Moslem" bit,
has progressively used
adult Moslems, West Bank
teenagers and was later re-
duced to posing for TV,
slobbering all over a de-
fenseless Beirut infant
trapped in his arms.
The U.S. press offers
abundant evidence that it is
a "set-up" for pseudo-
authorities and others with
prejudices so blatant as to
disqualify them for any
serious discussion. Uri Av-
neri, for one, is brought on
camera again and again, his
words being recorded reve-
rently.
Avneri is usually intro-
duced as a former
member of the Knesset.
What is never revealed is
that he is a publisher of
pornography, is re-
garded with scant re-
spect and is about as
representative of the Is-
raelis as Helmut Schmidt.
Former Undersecretary
of State George Ball is an-
other regular who can al-
ways be counted upon to ex-
press his malevolence in a
dignified, articulate man-
ner. Of late, he has extended
his rancor to American
Jews, charging them on
ABC's "Nightline" with
putting their own country's
views second to those ofrIs-
rael.
That two standards of
press coverage exist, one for
Israel and another for
Arabs, seems obvious. The
killing of Lebanese civilians
by the PLO and Syria has
gone on for years but has
been largely unreported —
principally because of PLO
intimidation. Last year, the
PLO arrested five American
newsmen (two from the
New York Times) in Leba-
non, an incident which was
concealed by the Times from
its readers.
It required two charges by
the Israel Government

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Press Office of yielding to
since the early 1970s, the even close to matching its
intimidation before the PLO has avoided and con- pejoratives and its long re-
Times explained that it only demned terror."
cord of hostility to Israel. Its
reports difficulties "by its
To "plug" its book, the use of innuendo is unsur-
correspondents in pursuit o f Times used excerpts on its passed. It once called upon
stories when the difficulties Op-Ed page which were lit- its readers to "ponder the
become news."
tle more than anti-Zionist significance of the fact that
This may be welcomed diatribes. In the first two of Begin rhymes with Fagan."
as a standard of sorts but these extracts, the Times, One outraged reader coun-
it is, nonetheless, difficult which more than any other tered that one should,
to reconcile with the newspaper protests its dedi- rather, "ponder the signifi-
lengthy article by Yous- cation to lofty principles, cance of the fact that Time
sef Ibrahim, a Times re- identified its author as a fa- rhymes with slime."
porter (May 29, 1979) on culty member at Columbia
But why, it may be asked,
how he had been de- but carefully omitted his does the U.S. press cling to a
tained by Israeli guards connection with the PLO. In standard so obviously
while crossing the Al- a subsequent article, the shabby, while heatedly de-
lenby Bridge from Jor- terrorist connection was nying any lack of profes-
dan. One might conclude noted — but only after sionalism? Why was the full
that the nationality of many protests to the Times. account of PLO atrocities in
those making the arrest is
After a long hiatus, it southern Lebanon for years
a prime consideration once more published an (surely an important story)
with Times editors.
Op-Ed (Sept. 29, 1982) by not published until after the
The PLO has few better Said and, again, carefully Israelis had driven them
friends in the U.S. than the omitted his PLO connec- out? Why was the documen-
Times, which regularly car- tion.
tation of Lieut. Gen.
ries the harangues of its
The Washington Post William Callaghan of the
spokesmen and apologists.
seems to apply similar con- UN on the PLO's "murder-
When students at Bir Zeit siderations. On May 3, it ous attacks" on the
on the West Bank began featured a report by Edward peacekeeping forces, "per-
demonstrating a few years Cody from Hama, Syria, haps unprecedented in
ago, Israeli charges that the on the killing of 5,000 civi- methodsand brutality du-
university "students were lians and noted a govern- i ng peace-keeping opera-
acting for the PLO were de- ment committee's estimate t ions" suppressed until por-
nied.
of about "20,000 orphans." t ions were released by the
David K. Shipler, the On the following day, Cody I sraeli Mission to the UN.
Times correspondent, wrote again filed from Damascus
It seems credible that the
often and sympathetically on another story and the s ilence of the media is not
(at times, in almost poetical murder of 5,000 civilians unconnected with, quite
fashion) of their struggle was quickly forgotten.
imply, the fear of the PLO,
and quoted their denials of
Some 48 hours later, which murdered reporter
terrorist influence. It took the Post editors were in Sean Patrick Toulan in Be-
about two years for Mr. pursuit of the Israelis i rut in 1980 and another re-
Shipler to finally concede with a five-column head- , p orter (in July 1981), Riad
that Bir Zeit was indeed "a line for a story on one T aha, a Lebanese who had
hotbed of Palestinian Arab woman killed by Is- t ried to arrange a memorial
nationalism."
raeli army gunshots dur- f or-murdered reporters and
In Times editorials, PLO ing a Gaza riot.
hotographers.
terrorists are not referred to
Although. the Post om-
It was common knowl-
as such but as "guerillas," budsman, Robert J. e dge that correspon-
"commandos,' "fighters" McCloskey, denied on May d ents, to get any informa-
and "soldiers." It is Prime 4 any "anti-Israel policy," ti on from the PLO, had to
Minister Begin who is readers noted that the Post s tay at the Commodore
called an "old terrorist"- had made a deliberate deci- Hotel in Beirut. Not as
(James Reston) while Yasir sion not to report the result well known was the fact
Arafat and Assad of Syria, of a poll, conducted by the t hat the "free U.S. press"
as well as their financial Post and ABC News, which p aid a tax, as hostages, to
backers in Saudi Arabia, found that "Americans, by 3 t he hotel, which was
are termed "moderates." to 1, are more sympathetic d tinned by the terrorists
Hussein of Jordan, who to Israel than the Arab f or $15,000 a month as
murdered and expelled states . . . of those who know " protection money."
thousands of Palestinians, what the PLO is, 75 percent
No hint of this seamy side
is called "cautious," his believe it 'a force for war o f U.S. journalism appeared
"soft voice" is noted by An- rather than peace.' "
n the media. Correspon-
thony Lewis and he is asked
More recently, the Post d ents recovered their cour-
to speak out in his "kingly published ‘a "how-to" essay a ge only when it became
voice."
by Dan Morgan on "The c ertain that the PLO
Those imaginative souls Next Steps in Isolating the p resence in Beirut was
who refer to the press as Begin Government: What d oomed. Time (June 21) fi-
"Jewish" or "Jewish- America Could Do to Con- n ally conceded that Beirut
controlled" point to two tinue Tightening the c orrespondents "stick to-
prime examples, the Wash- Screws."
ether, do not go out at
ington Post and the New
To compensate for this n ight, and never photo-
York Times. But a study of burst of not altogether dis- gr aph Syrian troops." It also
their coverage might well interested enthusiasm, di vulged that Syrians "re-
indicate some competitive- Benjamin Bradlee, execu- p ortedly" pistol-whipped
ness as to which paper can tive editor of the Post, con- tw o photographers.
denigrate the Israelis more ceding "tension between the
The Israelis, who liber-
effectively.
Jewish community and the at ed southern Lebanon at
For example, a tabula- Washington Post" invited gr eat cost, only to see the
tion of 22 Times Op-Ed one local Jew to "watch to rrorists extolled as "fight-
page articles, from the news operations" for one 'er s" and "soldiers," suffered
start of the liberation of week. Presumably, the a U.S. press openly and al-
Lebanon through June one-week observation m ost fanatically antagonis-
24, revealed only "two would convince Jews that, ti e.
which were favorable, despite mountains of evi-
Israeli blunders were
three pollyannish and il- dence, it was churlish to co needed by reserve general
logical and 17 distinctly even question the impar- A haron Yariv: "During the
hostile to Israel."
tiality of the Post. fir st two weeks, we lost val-
The inability of the Times
Incidentally, so great is ua ble time in competing
to find contributors sym- the fear at the Post of wi th the version of the fight-
pathetic to Israel is consis- Jews or "the Jewish in g and its aftermath put
tent with its long term pol- lobby" that Bradlee ou t by the enemy, and in
icy. Not too long ago, the warned in advance --- "if jo urnalism timing is of the
Times published a book by he tries to lobby us, he's ut most significance."
Edward Said, a member of out on his bottom."
It is doubtful that the
the Palestine National
In the magazine field, Is raelis could have done
Council, in which the startl- Time leads in animus — an ything to stem the tide
ing assertion was made that with no other magazine
Continued on Page 23)

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