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Journalist Speaks Truth to Employer, Demoted from “Contributor” to “Palestinian”

RULA_MSNBC

By Nima Shirazi | Wide Asleep in America | July 23, 2014

A day after journalist, writer, and frequent MSNBC contributor Rula Jebreal harshly criticized that very cable news network during a broadcast of “Ronan Farrow Daily” for its biased and deferential pro-Israel coverage of the current military assault on Gaza, she appeared on “All In with Chris Hayes” to further discuss the matter.

The evidence of anti-Palestinian bias in the mainstream media – including cable news networks – is beyond question, as numerous studies and analyses have shown. A common refrain – heard again last night in Hayes’ attempt to defend his employer’s coverage of the ongoing Israeli massacre of Palestinians – is that Israeli government officials are more accessible than officials from Palestinian groups. But this claim rests on the assumption that allowing politicians and their spokespeople to repeat honed talking points is the same thing as journalism.

In January 2014, for example, an internal study of the past 11 years of NPR’s Israel-Palestine coverage found that its reports and dispatches suffered from significant “imbalance” between Israeli and Palestinian voices. Ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos summarized the report, noting that such skewed representation “is to be expected.” Why? Here’s what he writes:

Israel generates more news in part because its officials are more open and the country is more democratic than in the Palestinian territories. Israel stages more newsworthy “official” events, such as elections, and its economy is far more dynamic. Israel also is an ally of the U.S., and its officials frequently visit. The Gaza Strip in particular is miniscule. NPR’s sole correspondent is based in Jerusalem.

Naturally, no mention is ever made in this litany to Israel’s crushing occupation and siege of Gaza, the deliberate destruction of its economy and infrastructure, or the fact that Israel is “more democratic” than an isolated and imprisoned enclave much in the same way Apartheid South Africa was ostensibly “more democratic” than the Bantustans created for its inconvenient and unwanted inhabitants.

“I had [Israeli government spokesman] Mark Regev on this program for 16 minutes, alright? That’s a very long interview but there was a lot to talk to him about,” Hayes told Jebreal last night, after noting that Hamas officials are hard to book for on-air interviews.

While much has been made of Jebreal’s truth-telling and Hayes’ weak pushback, the chyrons used during Jebreal’s interviews have told an even more troubling story.

In all of her appearances on the network over the past two years as MSNBC contributor, Jebreal has routinely been introduced, described, and referred to on-air as either a “journalist” or an “MSNBC contributor,” and usually both.

During her appearance on “All In with Chris Hayes,” however, which followed her widely-reported condemnation of Israel/Palestine coverage, the chyron describing Jebreal read: “Palestinian Journalist.” That kind of description serves to paint her comments automatically as themselves biased and emotional, rather than factual and impartial. It would be as inappropriate as frequent contributor Jonathan Alter being referred to as a “Jewish Journalist.”

Full article

July 24, 2014 - Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. Reblogged this on Spread An Idea and commented:
    so it goes

    Like

    Comment by peteybee | July 24, 2014 | Reply

  2. and
    this palestinian journalist
    will be asked back
    when?

    Like

    Comment by 5 dancing shlomos | July 25, 2014 | Reply


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