Friday, September 23, 2005

BBC: All the News That's Fit to Bend

A BBC headline today reads, "Israel launches Gaza air strike."

"What?" you say. "Why would Israel violate its agreement with the Palestinian Authority? Why is Israel so eager to break the peace?"

Well, I suppose the answer to these questions ought to be found in the small print, underneath the headline where we read:
Israel launches its first air strike on Gaza since its withdrawal...
Well, there you have it. It would appear that this unprovoked attack may well be the first of many, after all, this is only the "first" since the withdrawal. But what was the point of the attack? What was Israel's motivation for this violent incursion into Gaza?

Oh......even further down in the small print....what do we find?

...after Palestinian militants hit an Israeli town.
Huh? What? You mean to say that Palestinian militants attacked Israel first? They attacked a town inside of Israel? Israel was responding to being attacked first?

Then why in the world didn't the headline read:

Palestinian Militants Attack Israeli Town
Palestinian militants flagrantly violated the cease-fire agreement today as rockets were sent flying from Gaza into a civilian residential area inside of Israel. As is usual in such circumstances, Israel responded with and air strike in Gaza, targeting known centers of militant activity.

That is really what happened. That is the real story. But the BBC apparently wanted everyone who glanced or skimmed the headlines to believe that Israel had acted badly today. Why?

The grotesque irony of this misleading headline (which seemingly blames Israel for the day's violence) is that the photograph displayed directly below it shows the smoke rising from an explosion in Gaza during a celebration parade marking the israeli pullout last week. Apparently a truck in the parade, loaded with militants and at least two large rockets on display, blew up while surrounded by large crowds of parade watchers.

Image hosted by

The death toll from the explosion is presently 15, including numerous children. Many other people were injured, some seriously.

I searched in vain for any headline that read:

Weapons Explosion Kills 15 During Palestinian Parade--Children Are Among the Dead

So, in summary, let's see.....the two biggest stories of the day are:

1. Palestinian militants attack Israel in violation of the mutually agreed cease-fire; and,

2. At least 15 Palestinians are killed by a weapons explosion during a parade in Gaza.

Yet the headline reads:

Israel Launches Gaza Air Strike

Oh, those Brits....always pulling one's leg!