The Israeli perspective–on genocide–dominates our airwaves

Originally published: Mondoweiss on November 26, 2023 (more by Mondoweiss)  |

The Israeli ambassador to the United States was on CNN this morning assuring us that when the truce is over, “the operation will resume”–i.e., the vengeful destruction of life and property in Gaza will continue. Then Dana Bash thanked the ambassador for taking time out of his busy schedule to come on the set and spout the propaganda.

As you’ve surely observed, American TV networks are supplying round-the-clock reports chiefly from the Israeli perspective. The freed Israeli hostages come alive in these reports— while the Palestinian prisoners freed in the exchanges are blurry flashes on the screen, never to be accorded the same dignity.

I’m proud that we have Tareq Hajjaj’s latest report on the Gazan refugees in the south desperately trying to return to their homes to check on loved ones–and Israelis at a checkpoint opening fire on the crowds, killing two. Tareq explains why these families disobeyed Israeli orders.

The families that have been torn apart by the genocide and spent over a month displaced are desperate for any word of the fate of their loved ones who remained. Many also desire to return to where their homes once stood, perhaps to salvage what they can from the rubble, including supplies, important belongings, and official documents.

Tareq quotes a father trying to return to Beit Hanoun:

Even if it’s dangerous, I want to check on my house. Even if it’s demolished, I want to take one last look at it.

While on CNN, Bash questions the veracity of the Gaza Ministry of Health’s numbers of civilians killed in Gaza, and turns to the Israeli ambassador for the truth. “The sad reality” is that some children have been killed, but that’s the “unintended consequences of a legitimate war,” Michael Herzog said.

“It sounds like you’re saying too many civilians” have been killed, Bash ventured respectfully.

Everyone else in the world sees the Israeli campaign for what it is, wanton and indiscriminate. Martin Griffiths, the UN under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs, said he has never seen anything like the destruction in Gaza in a long career.

The worst ever. And I don’t say that lightly. I started off dealing with the Khmer Rouge [in Cambodia in the 1970s] and you remember how bad that was, the killing fields and so forth. But 68 percent of the people killed in Gaza are women and children. They stopped counting the numbers of children killed after 4-1/2 thousand.

Nobody goes to school in Gaza. Nobody knows what their future is. Hospitals have become places of war, not of curing. Now I don’t think I’ve seen anything like this before, it’s complete and utter carnage.

Civilized society understands that this genocide is the product of apartheid and its dehumanization of the subject population. Tareq Baconi has said the word “apartheid” on CNN, at last. Noura Erakat and Mustafa Barghouti have said so on BBC.

But the crackdown on pro-Palestinian speech is unabated in the U.S. It feels straight out of the McCarthy era, with violent overtones. Arizona State University denied a platform to Rep. Rashida Tlaib, surely because she has stood up for Palestinian humanity. Susan Sarandon was dropped by her talent agency for speaking out on behalf of Palestinians at a rally. Actress Melissa Barrera was dropped from the film “Scream 7” for posting on social media that our mainstream media only show one side of the issue.

Why they do that, I will let you deduce for yourself.

Barrera is talking about the Israel lobby inside American political life. A pro-Israel businessman offers a progressive Democratic senate candidate $20 million in campaign funding to drop out of his Michigan race and take on Tlaib for Congress. “The offer… reflects a growing effort to target Democratic candidates who have either been critical of Israel or sympathetic to Palestinian causes,” the New York Times reports.

And the businessman is a former donor to AIPAC, the leading Israel lobby group. The Zionists who are trying to drive U.S. discourse and policy in the most belligerent fashion, even to war with Iran. Just don’t talk about that.

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