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ESPN Apes Anti-Israel Bias

A Palestinian waves a flag during a protest in the West Bank, May 18, 2021. (Raneen Sawafta/Reuters)

You can’t escape it. In a story about the Brooklyn Nets’ Kyrie Irving’s inability to concentrate on basketball because of world events — “our people are still in bondage across the world, and there’s a lot of dehumanization going on” — ESPN claims that the “latest outbreak of violence began in east Jerusalem last month, when Palestinian protests and clashes with police broke out in response to Israeli police tactics during Ramadan and the threatened eviction of dozens of Palestinian families by Jewish settlers.”

Of course, police showed up after rioting was already a threat. The violence was in reaction to Al-Aqsa restrictions precipitated by COVID fears (Palestinian authorities haven’t allowed Israel to provide vaccination centers) and Jewish celebrations of Jerusalem unification. Plus, Jewish “settlers” — only Jews can be “settlers” — aren’t empowered to evict anyone without legal cause. The Sheikh Jarrah case is a property-rights dispute being adjudicated in the courts. It was delayed by the supreme court.

It’s complicated stuff. So I suppose can’t really get mad at ESPN for lifting a sentence, verbatim, from the Associated Press, since PBS and the Chicago Tribune did the same thing.

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