The Israeli-Palestinian confrontation is complicated, and would be even without the bad faith that is the region’s chief export. Many elements in the conflict go back to the 1930s, and are layered one atop the other, making peace impossible and even cease-fire difficult.
The European elites and the blind left in the United States argue that the mere Israeli presence on the West Bank and in East Jerusalem is a form of violence. No one can ignore the constant interplay between the Israeli military power, which maintains its presence there, and the Palestinian population. Many Palestinians, who dare not say so, welcome the security these Israeli forces offer. They can see the alternative, of descent into the chaos in nearby Muslim countries, close at hand.
The outbreak of knife attacks during the Jewish High Holidays this fall, often against civilians and sometimes against the wrong brand of Muslim, was clearly terrorism by the Palestinians. The fact that the knife fighters are often adolescents, schooled from infancy to hate Jews, in schools sponsored by the United Nations, is particularly reprehensible.
The Israelis are usually accused of using “excessive force.” The bare statistics are used as an argument that, since more Palestinians die than Israelis, it’s obvious that the Israelis are the aggressors. But self-defense often results in “collateral damage,” and whose fault is that?
Presenting these episodes by identifying the Palestinian dead as victims — as is done often in the international media — distorts reality. The London Guardian, which is reliably left-wing, reported the death of a Palestinian who stabbed an Israeli guard under a typical headline: “Palestinian shot dead at Damascus gate in Jerusalem after stabbing Israeli guard.” The severe wound the assailant inflicted on the guard was barely mentioned. A similar account in the London Daily Mail was only a little better: “Jerusalem’s streets run red with blood: Israeli police shoot dead man who stabbed border guard at Damascus Gate — the 99th Palestinian to die in latest wave of violence.” The attack on Pearl Harbor might have been headlined: “Americans slay two Jap pilots taking Sunday-morning flight over Pearl Harbor.”
President Obama encourages such reporting with his pretense that there’s “a negotiating process” at work to resolve the dispute, and he knows there is not. The Palestinians are divided by a bitter rivalry between the secular Palestine Liberation Organization and Hamas, which is crazed by distorted religion. This bitter dispute, which feeds the violence, is rarely even hinted at in the international media.
Our colleagues add to the impasse with a twisted version of events. “You’d be hard pressed to find an example of terror in the world — outside of Israel — where mainstream media outlets prioritize the fate of the perpetrators over that of their victims,” concludes U.K. Media Watch. The beat — and the beat-up of Israel — goes on.