Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Newspaper Bias (or Ignorance) Masquerading as Fact - Part 2

Excerpted from the Boston Globe, October 16, 2007

"Rice pushes for plan on Mideast peace - Urges Israelis, Palestinians to compromise
By Michael Abramowitz, Washington Post October 16, 2007
RAMALLAH, West Bank - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice pressed Israelis and Palestinians yesterday to compromise on a plan to jump-start peace negotiations, describing the ending of their long conflict as one of the top goals of President Bush in the 15 months he has left in office. A day after meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Rice traveled here to meet with Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, who urged Rice to lean on Israel to address a variety of grievances and lay out a detailed plan to resolve the status of Palestinian refugees, the future of Jerusalem, and other elements of the conflict. When she emerged for a joint news conference after meeting with Abbas for nearly three hours, Rice chose only to reiterate her past admonition that both parties should avoid steps that "undermine confidence." Rice is trying to nudge the Israelis and Palestinians into agreeing on a yet-undefined document that could help launch the peace conference - perhaps followed by final negotiations. The Palestinian side wants the document to be as detailed as possible, in part to give hope to its population that a solution may be near; the Israelis are trying to make the document as vague as possible and are nervous that the political ground has not yet been laid for some of the difficult compromises that might be necessary.

So let me see if I understand this correctly. The Government of Israel (GOI) wants a vague document (probably not "full of sound and fury" but definitely "signifying nothing") and the Palestinians want a detailed plan to resolve the issues of the conflict.

And the Secretary of State of the United States, the representative of the President of the United States who she says has as a top priority the ending of the conflict, "pressed Israelis and Palestinians yesterday to compromise on a plan".

What, Madame Secretary, did you suggest to the Palestinians that they do in order to effect a compromise?

Oh, yeh.

Agree to have NO plan?

Might it not seem a bit disingenuous (gently stated) on her part to say that she is "pressing" both sides?

There are only two versions of reality and neither one is that she is "pressing" both sides.

EITHER she has stated to the GOI in the strongest terms possible that it needs to agree to a plan that includes all differences between the parties and has warned the GOI of the consequences of its failing to comply.

OR she hasn't.

When will the media notice that the Palestinians are pleading (begging?) for the GOI to join in the effort to work for a just peace and that the GOI will stall and find excuses not to do so?

Is it ignorance or bias that motivates a newspaper to allow an article to be published that simply recites whatever Madame Rice chooses to say without pointing out how deceptive and misleading her words are?

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