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Thursday, September 17, 2009

Settler slideshow and talk of bias

Fervent Believers- a slide show:
http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2009/09/13/world/20090913SETTLERS_4.html


#6 says volumes; #7 is terrorist activity, but you're not allowed to call it that. Remove the Jews with guns and replace them with Palestinians and the criticism of the kids, their parents (oooooh, see?, they teach their kids to hate!!), all Palestinians, all Muslims would be rampant and instantaneous. Settlers generally somehow escape this type of indictment and generalization.

Most of this is rather sympathetic toward these illegal settlers- praying above the sea of lights, washing a kid in the middle of rubble, religious ceremony of the devout. The same sort of photos in a major publication of Palestinian terrorists and those who sympathize with them would result in explosive riots. You can’t even discuss how having your family killed, land stolen, being a refugee three times over might drive one to fight and not care if you live or die. This is considered support for terrorism. Sympathizing and understanding Jewish terrorists and terrorism is second nature to us- they had the Holocaust, after all. Good enough. You don’t even have to say it. All is justified.

Sympathizing with illegal settlers who heckle, beat, and steal, however, is just one’s own opinion to which we all are entitled. Frequent additions include: Freedom of speech. Isn’t this country (/Israel) great? You can say what you think without consequences, unlike in those Arab countries.

Going back to sympathizing with Jewish terrorists being ok versus sympathy with Arab terrorists being a terrorist action itself... I think this sort of thing is where accusation of bias of something being too pro-Palestinian comes from. We are allowed to present the Jewish point of view without an Arab voice, but to present a Muslim or Palestinian POV without the Jewish response is pro-Palestinian and virtually unheard of in the mainstream discussion. Does presenting the (a, some, etc- as there are more than one) Palestinian perspective really indicate bias or does it only seem so because the news is dominated with the Jewish or Christian Zionist perspective? In the recent UN report that officially called Israel out for war crimes, this comes into play. More text was dedicated to Israeli war crimes, so Israel and others discount it as biased. End of discussion. Lets talk about Iran and how we are going to dupe the Americans into taking them out, too. No. More text is needed because exponentially more damage was inflicted by Israel and more accusations are presented (which Israel tries and fails to justify), so more investigation is needed. Also, Israel's crimes are disputed by Israel and the US (and it's veto power) and Hamas' crimes aren't disputed by very many at all so there isn't much to prove or discuss there.

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