Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Palestinian Propaganda 101

I've been going through Daylife, which is a photo service encompassing AP, Reuters, and other news services. The captions are provided by the respective news services. These photos are in reverse chronological order (most recent at the top), and shows just how the media bias creeps in.

Here's the most recent caption:
5 hours ago: A Palestinian youth shot with live ammunition by an Israeli soldier is carried by others during a protest following a demonstration against Israel's military operation in Gaza, at the Kalandia checkpoint between the West Bank city of Ramallah and Jerusalem, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2008. Israeli aircraft kept up a relentless string of assaults on Hamas-ruled Gaza on Tuesday, smashing a government complex, security installations and the home of a top militant commander as thousands of Israeli ground troops, backed by tanks and artillery, massed along the border, waiting for a signal to attack. (AP)
As the caption is written, it would appear that the protester was shot without rhyme or reason, and that the Israelis were acting with excessive force. No context is provided for what happened.

Six hours ago:
6 hours ago: Palestinian youths, protesting the Israeli offensive in Gaza, carry a protester injured during scuffles with Israeli soldiers at Qalandiya checkpoint near the West Bank city of Ramallah December 30, 2008. Israel hit the Gaza Strip with more air strikes on Tuesday and warned its military action could last weeks, while its Islamist enemy Hamas vowed to keep up rocket attacks on Israeli cities. (Reuters)
No mention that the guy was shot, let alone that he was attempting to throw a Molotov cocktail at Israeli soldiers.

Here's what appears to be the first photo:
A Palestinian youth, hit by an Israeli bullet in his leg, lies on the ground after he troops fired at him when he was trying to throw a Molotov cocktail during a protest at Kalandia checkpoint, between Ramallah and Jerusalem on December 30, 2008. The Israeli forces offensive on the Gaza Strip has sparked protests across the occupied West Bank and the world, with demonstrations held in European capitals, Turkey, Egypt and Syria. (AFP/Getty Images)
At last, we finally figure out what has happened - and curiously, it wasn't the most recent photo that tells the story; but the oldest. This wasn't some innocent youth caught up in violence. It wasn't someone who was throwing rocks or hurling insults at Israelis who responded with lethal force. It was a thug who threw a Molotov cocktail at Israelis, and appears to have been injured.

I'm wondering how the media outlets know that he was shot with live ammo. Did they check his wounds? Did they bother to ask the Israelis? Or did they make it up as they went along?

Apparently, they just make things up and omit key details. It's just business as usual. (HT: Code Pirate at LGF for tracking down the first photo in the sequence)

It's also worth noting that all the photos were taken at roughly the same time, but were posted at different times.

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