Sunday, 26 September 2010

Terrorism And Bias

In the third shooting attack in Israel in less than a month, a nine-month pregnant Israeli woman was shot at in her car today by Palestinian terrorists. Miraculously only wounded in her leg, the woman was taken to hospital where she had to undergo an emergency caesarian section, with her baby delivered in good condition.
The media continues to report on the situation in the Middle East by ignoring the continuous terrorist attacks and writing about how Israel is the object to peace, such as in today's Oberver editorial, which Chas Newkey-Burden nicely fisks.
Also big news is UNHRC's accusation of Israel committing "war crimes" in it's soldiers defending themselves from almost certain death at the hands of the lynch mob in May's flotilla incident.
Robin Shepherd tackles the BBC's standard bias in it's coverage of the UNHRC report; Just Journalism look at the other media coverage; and Elder of Ziyon exposes the omission and twisting of evidence in the UNHRC's biased report.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

The Trouble Started When Israel...

Early this morning an Israeli security guard was driving through East Jerusalem when a mob of Palestinians surrounded his car, blocked the road, and started hurling rocks at the car.
And then the trouble started, according to the BBC. The above has absolutely no relation to what happened next...
Fearing that he would be killed or abducted, the guard opened fire, killing one Palestinian - who had a criminal record and was armed with a knife.
This led to the Palestinians rioting in East Jerusalem and the Temple Mount, with several Israeli bystanders injured, one stabbed, and three more injured when Palestinians overturned their car.
And it all started when an Israeli once again dared to defend himself when being attacked by Palestinians. Why do we keep provoking the Palestinians by living?!
More from Just Journalism on the BBC's inaccurate reporting of this story. Maybe they did it to try and appease the people who were upset by their balanced documentary on the flotilla incident.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Selichot At The Kotel

This wonderful video of selichot was taken at the Kotel on Erev Yom Kippur, of the Sephardi (and my favourite) tune Adon HaSelichot. It is hard to describe the atmosphere and emotions of Yom Kippur in words, but this clip just about sums it up. Even the most secular Jews observe Yom Kippur. Yom Kippur is an inspiring day anywhere in the world (as I can attest from London), but the Kotel is the holiest place on earth, and I pray that soon we will return to the Jewish homeland. It is the most beautiful day, when millions of Jews all over the world come together, showing our dedication to Judaism and G-d, praying for forgiveness for our sins, for a year of blessing, self-improvement and for our faith to be strengthened.
This upbeat tune for Adon HaSelichot is seen by some as against the serious tone of the day - especially when accompanied by enthusiastic Sephardis clapping and drumming along! - but the song is amazing in its ability to uplift and make you shiver at the same time, which is why it's my favourite.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

More Gaza Violence And Media Bias

It turns out that the two Palestinians killed on Sunday were not "armed" with the weapons; they had just picked them up after seeing them lying on the ground - but they were standing near the terrorists who did fire at the IDF. The Telegraph for some reason illustrates this with a picture of Palestinian children posing behind a hospital's metal gate. I think the picture is supposed to reflect badly on Israel and make the Palestinians look "caged in", but I'm not quite clear how it's significant that whoever built the hospital in Gaza gave it a gate.
The BBC also reports the story in a strange way, early on in the article saying "The Israeli army said it had returned fire after militants approached the border and fired a rocket propelled grenade at a patrol", but only affirming later on in the piece that this wasn't a Jewish lie and actually did happen: "The incident occurred shortly after militants in Gaza fired several rockets and mortar rounds across the border into southern Israel."
Also notable is the statement the BBC make at the end of the article - and which they add at the end of most articles on the subject - that: "One Thai farm worker in Israel has been killed by rocket fire from Gaza in the past 18 months, while scores of Palestinians in Gaza have been killed over the same period."
See how "disproportionate" Israel is! Never mind how many rockets have been fired in that period (about 2000), if it only killed one person, Israel isn't allowed to retaliate. Meanwhile scores (in other words, so many it's impossible to count, not like Grandma's home-knitted rockets) of Palestinians have been killed. It doesn't matter if they were killed accidentally blowing themselves up, or whilst they were in the middle of trying to murder Israelis - either by knife, gun, or rockets - the important thing is to imbed it in your mind that Israel-Is-Disproportionate-And-Bad.
A near-identical incident occurred today when Palestinian terrorists again fired missiles at the IDF, who retaliated, reportedly killing one Palestinian. Make that 'scores of Palestinians, plus one', and, to the BBC's disappointment, still only the one Thai farm worker.
Over on the Sky website though, Dominic Waghorn blogs one of Hamas' propaganda videos, depicting the Palestinians destroying and taking over Israel. Of course this is only the dream of the select members of the Hamas "military wing". No other Palestinians share that dream of killing Jews and taking over Israel. They want to share the land and live in peace, like what happened when we gave them Gaza.
UPDATE: At least 11 rockets and mortars were fired into Israel today, Wednesday, two of which were phosphorous bombs, luckily landing in open areas. Israel responded by striking the tunnels used to smuggle in weapons, and tunnels being dug to send terrorists into Israel, killing one Palestinian.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Hider: Rockets Are Minor Annoyance

Just Journalism look at the Times' latest editorial, that is "the first since the start of the peace talks to focus on Hamas’ refusal to accept either the legitimacy of the peace talks, or the existence of the Jewish state." (Which the Times, unlike the other papers, have acknowledged previously). The editorial refers to Hamas' recent murder of four innocent Israelis and states that although some settlers and ultra-Orthodox Jews might oppose Israel giving away land (for religious and security reasons), "any equation between such groups and Hamas is crass, mistaken and grossly offensive." It is in its editorials that the Times shows its journalistic integrity, in stark contrast to papers like the Guardian and Independent, who seem to view the settlers as a bigger obstacle to peace than Hamas terrorists.
In it's reporting though, The Times often demonstrates an anti-Israel slant that is common in the rest of the media. The culprit is their Middle East correspondent, James Hider. Last week he wrote an opinion piece that gives more of an insight into his anti-Israel attitudes than is already evident in his news reporting. To be fair - as I always am! - Hider does not seem to be an extremist left-wing Hamas and terror supporter. He occasionally acknowledges Hamas' murderous intent, but does tend to follow the rest of the media in focusing more on the settlers.
The op-ed opens with a ridiculous exchange with a Tel Aviv waiter, who learns that Hider lives in Jerusalem: "'Jerusalem?' he gasped. 'It's full of violence and police checkpoints. I never go there. What's it like now?'" I know people say Tel Aviv is a bubble, but I don't believe a typical citizen there is that ignorant. This must be the only Tel Aviv-ian who is, and trust Hider to find him. There are violence and checkpoints in and around both Jerusalem and Tel Aviv - but neither city is "full of" them. Jerusalem is not what you'd call a war zone, and nor is it the hole that Hider tries to imply it is. It is a thriving, bustling, modern town, with residents of all religions and backgrounds - and richer and poorer areas, just like every city in the world has.
Hider describes the divisions and differences between on the one hand Fatah in the West bank and Hamas in Gaza, and on the other hand the secular Israelis and the "rising influence of the ultra-Orthodox" in Jerusalem. But he claims that "what unites most Israelis is a sense of indifference":
"Most Israelis don't think about the millions of Palestinians on the other side of the walls and fences, unless Hamas is firing its rockets into the communities in the south. But since Israel's devastating offensive into Gaza in late 2008, even those have slowed to a minor annoyance."
10,000 rockets is a "minor annoyance"? Bomb shelters, trauma, damages, injuries, deaths, a minor annoyance? Is that what Hider would call it if a kassam fell on him?

Following that article, Hider was back to news reporting on Tuesday, with a piece on, yes, the settlers, and the "Countdown to construction that could doom peace".

Meanwhile, there have been more Palestinian terror incidents that didn't make the news. On Monday Palestinians shot at two plain-clothed Israeli policemen, lightly wounding them. A two year old baby was hospitalised after Palestinians threw rocks at the car her family was driving. In another Palestinian rock-throwing incident, an Israeli vehicle was damaged but no one was injured.

Hamas continue to fire rockets into Southern Israel on an almost daily basis, including two today, miraculously causing no injuries. An eight year old Israeli boy was injured when Palestinians threw rocks at his face. Also today, Palestinians armed with guns and a rocket launcher were killed by the IDF after approaching the Gaza fence despite warning shots from the IDF.

The twelve year old girl wounded by Palestinians last Thursday is in intensive care following head surgery - her family request that people pray for Herut bat Timor.

Friday, 3 September 2010

Hamas Continue Terror Attacks

Hamas have threatened to continue their terror attacks until the peace talks stop, and they mean what they say.
After murdering four Israelis on Tuesday, on Wednesday another two Israelis were injured in the same way, shot at in their car whilst driving.
And yesterday a 12 year old Israeli girl was injured and evacuated to hospital after being hit in the head by a rock thrown by Palestinians (although this sort of attack is actually fairly common.)
Just Journalism examine yesterday's coverage of the peace talks, noting the Times' detailed look at Hamas and their violent opposition to peace, whilst others - most notably the Guardian, as usual - equated settlers with terrorists.
Today though, the Times headline refers to the "drive-by shootings of settlers", as though being settlers means they deserved it.
Why is it that the media view settlers as the main obstacle to peace, when even the Palestinians don't? Hamas don't distinguish between Israelis based on what town they live in. To them, a Jew is a Jew and must be killed.
They only use settlers as an excuse. Whatever they say about the settlements, we've seen already with Gaza that Israel giving away land does not bring peace from the Palestinians - it is met with more violence: 10,000 rockets have been fired into Southern Israel over the last few years.
So it is not up to Israel and never has been; we have always been open to peace. Once the Palestinian leaders agree that they want peace, and convince their brainwashable people that peace is good and not terrorism, then the talks might actually go somewhere.