www.aftenposten.no, is the web site of Norways biggest morning paper.
Saturday evening, 17 november 2012 the caption reads:
“Rig themselves up to see Gaza be bombed” and the small text below it says “People clap when they see a hit in Gaza”
The photo links to an article that describes how these citizens of the Sderot village brought old armchairs to a “ringside seat” position to watch Israel airplanes hit targets in Gaza. Of course in a population of 8 million it will be possible to find most any type of behavior. It is interesting, however, how the Norwegian media once more resort to demonizing Israelis, letting these men represent the whole population, while the pictures of the citizens in Gaza are depicted as wounded, crying, in despair.
We, and the journalists themselves know, that this asymmetry is completely false, that in fact what characterizes this conflict is the intended and callous targeting of civilians, and celebrating these casualties, that rather represents the enemies of Israel.
In the case of Sderot the hypocrisy of the reporters has an extra dimension since the reporters omit to explain that the inhabitants of Sderot have had to live with daily rockets and mortar with unimaginable conditions for the children of Sderot, or the daily life and their quality of life throughout a period of 12 years, no less!
So, after a few days of almost “balanced” reporting from the conflict, things are now getting back to “normal” Norwegian media standards.
But it gets worse…
“Media censure and selective information become increasingly worse.
After tel Aviv and Jerusalem both got hit by rockets a gang made up of Norwegian Islamists, Serve the People (the same ones who have been caught swindling away millions of NOK’s in public funds through their own little fiefdom, SOS Racism, the microscopic extreme left party Red (Workers Marxist Leninist Party), the Pal Com and the Labor Youth marched on the Israeli embassy.
The whole episode must have been perceived as so shameful that Dagbladet chose to protect the Labor Youth by deleting any mention of them in another article which pointed out that the Labor Youth indeed did participate in the demonstration. One commentator was astonished by how the Labor Youth, who themselves have experienced terror could behave in such a way, but after a while Dagbladet deleted also this.
To top it up, the dagbladet journalist was present at the demonstration himself, but opted for not mentioning with a word the fact that the Labor Youth actively participated, rather like in the USSR before Glasnost.
NRK did have a more balanced coverage of this event, and aired also the speech deputy leader of the Labor youth gave. He mentions in the briefest of passings, that the Labor Youth are against violence and rockets, but for all the antipathy against Israel, these words became pretty meaningless. You can see the speech here
When will the main news outlets discover the benefits of critical self- assessment? At present this seems like a distant dream.
Still not convinced that this is the same old same old in as much as Norway and its relationship to Israel and Jews is concerned?
Well how about a foreign minister who maintains that Israel is an occupying power in Gaza? Although he was goaded and prodded into a corner by the NRK journalist Eva Nordlund who asks the very leading question; if we take into consideration that Israel is an occupying force in Gaza, things may be interpreted in a different way? – referring to how the Hamas then has the right to defend itself.
FM Eide responded first in general terms on Israel as an occupying force, but then he explicitly went on to state that Israel is occupying Gaza.
I am sure people with a better grasp on reality will quickly point out to our novice FM the absurdity of this position, and how destructive this is for Norwegian ambitions to make a difference in the region. Well, now we are making a difference by sticking out like a sore thumb, totally out of tune and synch with the rest of the world.
What else can be said about the Norwegian coverage of the conflict? Both Aftenposten and Dagbladet have gladly placed their journalists in grave danger by allowing them to ‘follow a terrorist on a day’s work. Aftenposten’s journalist proudly tells how he has witnessed how a rocket was fired at Tel Aviv, while Dagbladet’s journalist decided it was a safe bet to follow an Islamic Jihad fighter down a rabbit hole to see how they prepare their deadly weapons. I wonder how the two media outlets would have defended these wreckless actions had their journalists been injured or, heaven forbid, been killed in a retaliatory attack from Israel? No prizes for guessing who they would blame for their folly…
Dagsavisen is no longer able to behave as a serious and reliable outlet, but resorts to tear jerking stories and pictures of grief stricken Gazans; I can’t really see how they are going to be able to look at themselves in the mirror after all of this is over – such wholesale abandonment of journalistic integrity is a long time since I saw.
What else? Let’s see, Mads Gilbert who has been on a very profitable book tour around the world while Syrians have died in the thousands has now reemerged in Gaza where he now aims to repeat his super hit parade of dirty lies of 2009. Lets hope the good doctor does not get himself involved in potential war crimes this time, for covering up for armed Hamas combatants who hide among the sick and injured. But in case he gets more busy telling fibs to the world, it is a good thing to know that Israel is receiving sick and injured people from Gaza and that truckload after truckload of medical other humanitarian supplies are being delivered despite the neverending rocket rain, small details no Norwegian outlet has chosen to share with Norwegian readers.