Onderstaande satire is hier en daar wat overdreven, maar toch ook wel erg herkenbaar. Al zijn de NRC en andere Nederlandse kranten wat subtieler, men acht informatie van pro-Palestijnse zijde structureel geloofwaardiger dan die van Israels kant, interviewt alleen Israeli’s die het voor de Palestijnen opnemen of juist extreem nationalistisch zijn, noemt Israelische politici standaard ‘hardline’ of ‘haviken’ en Palestijnse ‘pragmatisch’ (Hamas) of ‘gematigd’ (Fatah, Palestijnse Autoriteit), en noemt Palestijnen wel erg snel ‘burgers’ ook als ze op weg waren om raketten af te schieten....
Rules and Guidelines for Westerners reporting on the Middle East
Following recent media reporting about Israel I am pleased to reveal the following rule book issued to all members of the Western media corps:
Rule 1 (Incidents involving possible loss of Arab lives)
If there is any incident either in Israel or near its borders in which there are claims of Arab losses you should write a report with the following headline:
“Israeli troops kill X Arab civilians including Y children”
For the numbers X and Y simply choose the highest figures from the following sources:
· Syrian State Television
· The Palestinian Authority
· Al Jazeera
· Any person within 20 miles of the incident who is wearing a kaffiya or a Burka.
You do not need to state the source of your claim. In the unlikely event that an Israeli spokesman claims either a different figure or that the incident simply did not happen you may end your report with the following:
“An Israeli spokesman claimed, without evidence, that they ‘acted in self-defence’.
Note that there are certain circumstances where Arab deaths from violence should not be reported at all. This is when Arabs themselves openly claim to be the killers. This applies, for example, in the following cases:
· Mass slaughter in fighting between different rival groups (Hamas vs PA, Hamas vs Al Qaeda, PA vs Islamic Jihad etc)
· Where the victims are accused of being Israeli collaborators
If news of these killings does leak out into the Western media then simply write a brief statement including the words:
“The underlying cause of the violence was the oppressive Israeli occupation”
Any claims of deaths of Israelis during such incidents can be assumed to be false and hence ignored.
Rule 2: Incidents involving loss of Israeli lives
If Israelis are killed in a terrorist attack, then treat this as an opportunity to take a vacation from reporting.
However, you should immediately return from your vacation if it is discovered that an Israeli family in Jerusalem is planning to build an extra bedroom to accommodate their new baby. In that case you should write a story with the headline
Israelis destroy chance of peace by announcing new West Bank settlement plans.
At the end of the article you can use the following statement:
An Israeli government spokesman claimed that the settlement plans were in response to what they claimed was a ‘terrorist attack’.
The only exceptions to this rule are as follows:
· In the event of a suicide bombing you may interview the suicide bomber’s family and write a sympathetic piece stating how the bomber was a loving family person driven to his/her actions by the Israeli occupation. Be careful to refer to the actual suicide bombing only in vague abstract terms, never mentioning the victims or their families.
· In the event of a particularly brutal terrorist attack, such as the slaughter of an entire family in their home in which a baby is decapitated, you can, if news of the attack reaches outside Israel, write a brief report with the following words:
“Although the Israelis claim that a terrorist attack occurred at X, it is more likely to have been the result of a disgruntled Thai worker, Jewish militants intent on sparking anti-Arab violence, or simply a family dispute. ”
Make sure you never mention the widepsread celebrations that take place throughout the Palestinian territories. Instead you should quote a Palestinian Authority spokesman, who having just led the celebrations with proclamations such as "This will be the fate of all Jews" in Arabic tells you in English that the Palestinian Authority do not approve of the attack as it damages their cause, and that in any case such actions are the natural response to the Israeli occupation.
Rule 3: Demographics
Remember the following important demographics in any report:
· Any Palestinian under the age of 24 is a child.
· Any Palestinian under the age of 12 is a baby.
· Any Palestinian over the age of 33 is a grandfather/grandmother.
· There are no Israeli ‘civilians’ and certainly no Israeli ‘children’. They are justsoldiers or settlers.
· Every Palestinian is a civilian. Those who produce suicide videos armed with machine guns vowing to kill as many Jews as possible are simply civilians forced by the Israeli occupation into becoming ‘militants’.
· Palestinian cities and towns are refugees camps.
· Israeli cities and towns are settlements.
Rule 4: Speaking to the natives
Never interview an Israeli. Although this is especially important after an incident such as the above, it applies equally to any aspect of life in Israel or the Middle East. The only exceptions to this rule are:
· Haaretz reporters
· Members of the Islamic Movement
· Amos Oz
· Any recent American Jewish immigrant living in the West Bank who uses Biblical quotations every other sentence.
To ensure this rule is adhered to it is safest to simply never speak to any Israeli Jew. Hence, make sure that whenever your are in Israel you either stay in the (Arab) American Colony Hotel Jersusalem or are hosted by a member of the Palestinian Authority or a person with a Haaretz press pass.
Rule 5 (Terminology)
· The word ‘terrorist’ must never be used except when referring to Jewish residents of the West Bank accused of acting provocatively in the presence of an Arab.
· Any Arab in a combat zone is unarmed if they are not carrying a mobile missile launcher. Any kind of guns, knives, swords, rocks, sticks or heavy metal items are, as a matter of course carried by unarmed Arabs since it is part of their cultural heritage.
· In any report you must insert the word “settler” after the word “Israeli”, unless it is known that they live outside of Central Tel Aviv, in which case you must add the word “fanatical” before “Israeli”.
· When mentioning the name of any Israeli city or town (i.e. settlement) you must also include the words occupied terroritory.
· When mentioning any Israeli politician you must insert the word “hardline”, “extremist”, or “right-wing” before their name (if in doubt it is best to insert all three words).
· In any report about Palestinians use the following words: “authentic”, “welcoming”, “poor”.
· When mentioning any Palestinian politician you must insert the word “moderate” before their name, even if they are a leader of Hamas.
Rule 6 (Peace activists)
Any non-Arab in the region who is involved in violent anti-Israel activities is a peace activist. If such a person dies under any circumstances then you must state before any evidence is produced that this person “was killed by Israeli troops”. You must also put out an urgent call to all journalists in the world to write about nothing else for the next 7 days. Also contact every playwrite to request a play dedicated to this martyr of the Palestinian cause.
Rule 7 (Arabic speeches)
Never use the services of an Arabic translator to find out what Arab leaders and clerics are telling their own people, as in “We will not rest until every Jew is dead”. This will ensure you do not have to waste time telling readers that they have directly contradicted what they told you in English (as in “We want peace with Israel”). It will also save you having to explain (or even report) that wild anti-Semitic conspiracy theories are believed by 99.999% of all Arabs. A simple rule of thumb is the following:
Any statement X made to you by an Arab in English is to be treated as unimpeachable truth. Any statement Y made by an Arab in Arabic that contradicts X, can be treated as false and hence ignored.
In the unlikely event that news of the translation gets into the main stream media you simply have to report that the translation is the work of MEMRI – a Zionist organisation dedicated to mis-translation to make Arabs look like anti-Semitic, homophobic, misogynistic psychopaths. If, even after that, the translation is proved to be accurate then you can simply say that the statement was "theatrical rhetoric which was never supposed to be meant literally".
Rule 8 (Israeli evidence)
Be aware that in most major stories where you are able to cast Israel as the devil incarnate, the Israelis subsequently produce hard evidence (videos, documents etc) that prove they were not guilty of the claims that had been made. In such cases there is no need to report on the new evidence. However, if you wish to remind readers of the original story you can include the following words at the end:
“Israel has claimed that some of these accusations are not true, but sources cast doubt on the authenticity of the Israeli evidence”.
Rule 9 (Rocket attacks against Israel)
The rule here is simple: Never report on any rocket attacks against Israel (also note: there is no Israeli town called Sderot). The only exception to this rule is if Israel eventually retaliates. In that case you can lead with a major story reporting that Israel has attacked civilians and you can include the following statement at the end of your 26 page report:
“The Israelis claim that their attack was in response to home made rocket attacks from Gaza/Lebanon.”
Rule 10 (Geography and Religion)
· Never look at a map of the whole Middle East. That way you will never have to reveal that Israel is less than the size of Wales surrounded by Muslim countries with a land mass several thousand times as large.
· Although you can refer to the fact that 20% of Israel's population are Arabs you should only do so if you include the words "oppressed minority", "abused", "underclass", "impoverished".
· Never ask why over 50% of Israel’s Jewish population appears to have dark or even black skin. This might otherwise force you to reveal that, contrary to your assumption that they are all of European/American origin they are actually native Middle Eastern and Ethiopian.
· Never ask why there are 0 Jews living in Gaza, 0 Jews living in the PA occupied part of the West Bank, 0 Jews living in Jordan, less than 50 Jews living in Egypt, less than 20 Jews living in Syria, and less than 30 Jews living in Lebanon. Do, however, say that Israel's policies make it an apartheid state committed to ethinic cleansing of all Arabs.
· Never ask why Israel is the only country in the Middle East whose Christian population is expanding.
· Never ask why Jersusalem is mentioned 800 times in the Old Testament and 0 times in the Koran. Do, however, refer at least once in every report to the fact that Jerusalem is sacred to Muslims.
Rule 11 (Tactics of War)
· Targetted assassinations of terrorists carried out by Israelis are, under all circumstances, heineous war crimes. When reporting such crimes always use the words widespread international condemnation and invoke the spectre of a UN Security Council resolution. Never mention that the assassination was carried out with such careful planning and skill that no civilian was harmed during the operation. Also never mention the direct threat the terrorist posed to Israel, nor the Israelis previously killed by the terrorist.
· Targetted assassinations of terrorists carried out by any country other than Israelis are, under all circumstances, causes for jubiliation. When reporting such crimes always use the words widespread international supportalthough you can include the words "concern expressed by some Muslim militants". Never mention the fact that, unlike assassinations carried out by Israelis, dozens of innocent civilians were also killed. Also never mention the fact that the terrorist did not pose a direct threat to the country carrying out the attack.
· Never mention the fact that in Palestinian suicide terrorist attacks, children are always specifically targetted. Just stress that such attacks are the inevitable result of the 'occupation' and 'poverty'.
· The total blockading of a country's borders and carpet bombing of its cities by nations from the other side of the world (as in, e.g. Libya) is a highly comendable tactic even though the country poses no threat to its neighbours. Stress the tyrannical nature of the regime being bombed (and do not remind readers that 6 months earlier you were telling them what a wonderful reformer their leader was) and never remind readers about the civilians living there (who mostly hate the regime)
· The blockading of Gaza's sea border to stop weapons deliveries, and the targeted bombing of its terror facilities by its neighbour (Israel) who the Gazans have shelled indiscriminately, is a heineous war crime, that must be the subject of multiple UN resolutions, enquiries, and 'peace' flotillas. Never mention the tyrannical nature of the Hamas regime but focus only on the civilians living there (without mentioning that they support the regime and all rejoice in the deaths of Israeli citizens). You should also point out the 'hypocrisy of the West' in not imposing a no-fly zone on Israel.
Rule 12 (Peace Partners)
Under no circumstances ever mention that the Hamas Charter calls for the death of all Jews and cites the Protocols of the Elders of Zion for its inspiration. Similarly, never mention that, even after the Oslo accords, the Palestinian Authority has never renounced its own charter calling for the destruction of Israel.
Rule 13 - The Final Option
If you have any doubt about the content of a story, or if you simply cannot be bothered to write anything yourself, then simply copy and paste whatever Al Jazeera is saying on its website.