Monday, January 16, 2012

Barry Rubin: The Three Rules of Western Discourse and Why The Media Must Always Blame Israel

By Barry Rubin

It is truly astonishing how, it often seems, how Western media coverage must blame Israel for everything that “goes wrong” in the Middle East, including murderous hostility to Israel.

Sentences often seem carefully formulated to push this claim and exclude any possibility of balance, much less accuracy. And no matter what the subject, it seems, this message must be snuck in.

Consider these two paragraphs in a Washington Post story about the Egyptian government’s cancellation of a Jewish pilgrimage to a site in Egypt:

“The government’s move underscores the changing relationship between Israel and post-Hosni Mubarak Egypt. The former president maintained relations with Israel, as laid out in the 1979 Camp David peace treaty, in part by curbing civil liberties with his expansive police force. Since his ouster last winter, anti-Israeli sentiment driven by Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians has risen to the surface, and Israeli-Egyptian tensions have grown.

“Relations soured further in the fall after a mid-August cross-border attack from Egypt led to the killing of at least five Egyptian border guards as Israeli troops pursued alleged militants. Many activists called for revisions of the peace treaty and protests outside the Israeli Embassy turned violent when some demonstrators stormed the building.”

Let’s list the subtle points made in these few sentences:

Continue reading The Three Rules of Western Discourse and Why The Media Must Always Blame Israel
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press in January 2012. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reportsand now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media

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