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Flotillas and Falsehoods
Don't members of the press ever resent being so used?


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Mona Charen

The effort to destroy the Jewish state has many fronts. One front is in Iran, where the maniacal regime that has repeatedly promised to “wipe Israel off the map” marches inexorably toward a nuclear bomb. Another is in Gaza, from which Hamas has lobbed 10,000 missiles into Israeli cities. Yet another front, the most insidious, is comprised of the propaganda arm of the Palestinian movement. And this front thrives for only one reason — the complicity of the world press and the so-called “international community.”

It was the propaganda arm that staged the “Freedom Flotilla.” But there have been many previous productions: The propaganda arm was responsible for the photo-shopped images of damage to Lebanon during the 2006 war, the staged “death” of twelve-year-old Muhammad al-Durrah, the “massacre” at Jenin, and the “war crimes” in Gaza.

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In each and every case, the “news” of Israeli atrocities was broadcast far and wide by organizations such as Reuters, AP, CNN, and AFP. The United Nations has offered its imprimatur to every libel. The truth seemed always to have a case of laryngitis.

Today, in the wake of the confrontation between Israeli soldiers and the provocateurs aboard the Gaza flotilla, the remarkably incurious world press is providing exactly the sort of headlines on which the organizers knew they could count. “Flotilla Attack Is Israel’s Kent State” screamed the Huffington Post. Agence France Presse carried a banner quoting the Turkish foreign minister to the effect that “Israel has lost all legitimacy.” Every news outlet I checked docilely described the flotilla as “humanitarian.”

Don’t members of the press ever resent being so used?

Fact: Israel imposed a blockade of Gaza to prevent weapons from reaching the radical Islamic regime there that continues to make war on Israeli civilians. Egypt too has blockaded the strip, hoping to choke off weapons to Hamas, which it views as a threat.

Fact: Humanitarian relief is delivered to Gaza from Israel on a daily basis. During the first three months of this year, 94,500 tons of supplies were transferred to Gaza from Israel, including 48,000 tons of food products; 40,000 tons of wheat; 2,760 tons of rice; 1,987 tons of clothes and footwear; and 553 tons of milk powder and baby food for the strip’s 1.5 million inhabitants. Representatives of international aid groups and the United Nations move freely to and from the Gaza Strip.

Fact: Upon learning of the intentions of the Gaza flotilla, the Israeli government asked the organizers to deliver their humanitarian aid first to an Israeli port where it would be inspected (for weapons) before being forwarded to Gaza. The organizers refused. “There are two possible happy endings,” a Muslim activist on board explained, “either we will reach Gaza or we will achieve martyrdom.”



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