How people are conditioned to revile Israel

Read this and you will understand how Israel-bashers in the media purposefully and malevolently build up hatred for Israel.

Steve Apfel

OpEds New York Times
New York Times

Part 3 of a three part series. Parts 1 and 2 can be read by clicking  here and here. 

Dirty Play

Reaching deep into the box of tricks we fish out high voltage devices of news heads and writers who hate with a passion. We’re led to hate with them. Some devices carry an open warning, others when the wrapper is peeled back, take the brain by stealth.

The melting pot device

The tactical jargon coined by the media is that worn-down cliché, ‘cycle of violence.’ There are many cases on which to draw. I pick out three for their clarity of hate.

The case of one for one

The case deals with the execution of a little girl in her bed, in the settlement of Adora in 2002. We know Phil Reeves, the fake scoop artist. In Part 2 he elevated an Israeli ‘massacre’ to a news breaker in the league of 9/11. Now he’s going to bury a Palestinian atrocity under four columns of Israel-revilement.  

In the Independent the headline foretells what the newsmaker intends for the child martyr. It refers to Israeli aggression! Four columns on Israeli “offensives” bury the atrocity. Only near the end we come upon a casual mention of five-year-old Danielle Shefi shot in her bed. “And so,” Phil Reeves acidly sums up, “the cycle of violence goes around.”

Into one pot he throws Palestinian “militants” killed in armed conflict and a sleepy child executed before the mother’s eyes. Some pot of porridge!

The case of shoppers and bomb makers

Look at Associated Press (AP), employing the melting pot trick differently.

In January 2002 two incidents occurred on the same day:

1. A terrorist sprayed Israelis with gun fire while they shopped for Shabbat in downtown Jerusalem.

2. The IDF found a bomb factory in the 'West Bank', and in a shoot-out killed the Hamas bomb-makers operating it.

Throwing the two incidents into one pot AP came up with the headline:

“Israel kills 4, Palestinian wounds 8.” Observe – Israelis are first to be thrown into the pot, their act being more evil: they killed. The Palestinian goes into the pot next, having done no more than wound shoppers. To simulate: had AP reported a WW II event the headline would be, “British forces kill 4 SS men; SS men wound 8 camp inmates.”

On the scale of evil the British deed would be heavier than the SS deed. .

Case of the provoking Jews

For the next cycle we return to Itamar. Toddlers and parents had their throats slit, and how does the Los Angeles Times treat the atrocity? The editorial spins the pot and out comes a cycle of violence.

“We’re currently witnessing the cycle in real time. In response to this brutal tragedy the Israeli government announced that it would build 500 more houses in existing settlements in the West Bank…Which is worse: stabbing children to death or building new houses in West Bank settlements? The answer is obvious. But that’s not the point. The point is that no matter how abhorrent the murders are, it serves no purpose to aggravate the provocation that led to them in the first place.”

So the family eradicated by cut throat militants is blameworthy for provoking them. How so? A Jewish home built on lawful land offended the murderers. Damn them – being offensive like that! Brought it on themselves, the way Jews normally do. What was the Fogel family thinking – to set up home on land eyed by an envious world for another people? Eh? That will teach them.

The Nazi-like mindset of the Los Angeles Times: into the melting pot go Jew and “militant”. One builds a home the other cuts throats. Tit for bloody tat.

Case of the equivalents

But we’ve not done with sick equivalents. Friend Karl Vick of Time magazine (Part 2) puts up a hand. Vick also believes in the equivalent, building = slaughter…But he extends the formula.

“Events,” Vick writes, “lurched forward with something very like vengeance.” Then he itemizes the vengeful acts: (1) Israel condemning the murder; (2) Israel approving more building; (3) Israel complaining to the UN; (4) Israel raising funds for the surviving Fogel children; (5) Israel calling on Palestinian leaders to stop promoting violence.

What plagues Karl Vick and kindred minds? Fundraising and complaining and pleading and building add up to mass murder? Do they sup from a cesspool?

Case of the motto “All the news that’s fit to print”

The Grey Lady, that motherly nickname of the New York Times has, believe or not, a grand eighty six year record of faking news – and while doing so, covering up for masterminds of genocide – Hitler and, most nakedly Joseph Stalin.

In the 1930s the Times got involved in faking news. Before it camouflaged Hitler’s final solution, it denied Joseph Stalin’s for the Ukrainian people.  Between 1932 and 1933 a famine raged; millions were deliberately being starved to death. Cannibalism was so widespread that Soviet authorities had to plaster signs on walls, “To eat your own children is a barbarian act.”

All the while the Times man in Moscow, Mr Walter Duranty, was filing dispatches to the contrary. Duranty was a denier. The Holodomor, as Ukrainians call their Holocaust by craftily engineered starvation, was just not happening. He carried off the Pulitzer Prize for his denial-filled stories. "Dispassionate interpretive reporting" the Pulitzer extolled Times’ correspondent. Fifty years later Duranty would be known as ‘The correspondent who liked Stalin’ and “Stalin’s apologist.”

Duranty, a firm communist and Bolshevik enthusiast (....)vociferously denied the famine in Ukraine, claiming that people were “hungry but not starving” “There is no famine,” he wrote. It wasn’t that he had the wool pulled over his eyes. In fact Duranty he saw the famine with his own eyes. He admitted it to an embassy official. Yet the Times ran articles calling Stalin’s genocide “mostly bunk” and even quipping, “You can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs.”  

Executive Editor Max Frankel was cool about it. “The revelation doesn't seem to qualify as news. It's really history, and belongs in history books." His successor, Howell Raines was also OK with it: “Though the paper's slogan is "All the News That's Fit to Print," it is patently flawed. Important news slips by because our coverage reflects blind spots that we recognize only in retrospect. ..We have not covered every major event with perfect prescience. “We know we make mistakes, but as long as they are … intellectually honest and promptly corrected…"

Blind spots! The Times was not intellectually honest then, and never was after – unless declining to return the fraudulent Prize was the honest thing to do.

Think about that record. Then reflect on Jodi Rudoren as the Times Bureau Chief in Jerusalem. From dispatches and articles let the paper disprove that her brief was to tear down Israel in the eyes of the world; to deprecate, denounce, condemn and revile Israel as the villain.

Take one of innumerable cases where a lazy Rudoren brazenly performs the melting pot trick. Here she throws Israeli and Hamas leaders into the pot, incants her spell, and out comes a ridiculous parity.

For offending language used by Prime Minister Netanyahu, she quotes him “dehumanizing” the Palestinians who kidnapped three Israeli teens, shot them in the face, then celebrated. Netanyahu had called them “beasts”. What descriptors for laughing murderers would be OK for Rudoren – criminals? militants?, law breakers?  In Gaza, Epithets Are Fired and Euphemisms Give Shelter.

On the other hand Hamas went into her pot with dehumanizing words of the very politest; no worse than PR spinning and petty threats. Rudoren kept dog whistles for genocide out of the reckoning .Think about it. At the time, and well before her trick, Hamas had been on TV calling for “giving the skulls of Israelis as gifts for our children’s feet to play with at the Gaza World Cup” (Hamas Al Aqsa TV, July 11, 2014). And a children’s program was teaching pre-schoolers the merit of killing Jews —“all of them” (Hamas Al Aqsa TV, May 2, 2014).  

Rudoren had the back of Hamas covered as securely as Duranty covered up for Stalin. It was her given duty: the Gray Lady had appointed her to be a cut out replica of that rogue.   

Case of a media event

The media was not happy when Israel wanted to ban reporters who sailed on the flotilla to Gaza. Reporters took to the high seas along with activists and celebrities to “break Israel’s blockade”. The Foreign Press Association reacted: “This sends a chilling message to the international media and raises serious questions about Israel’s commitment to freedom of the press. Journalists covering a legitimate news event should be allowed to do their jobs without threats and intimidation.”

Note: the flotilla was newsworthy only because the media covered it. Had the media not covered the event the flotilla would not have sailed. The media creates the event through its coverage, then demands the right to cover the news it created.  How slick is that!

And that is how the media, reporting news or making it, conditions people to revile Israel.

The writer is a prolific author of novels, non-fiction, opinion and essayist. His works are The Paymaster, 1998; Hadrian’s Echo, 2012; Contributor to ‘War by other means’, Israel Affairs, 2012; A Bias thicker than faith (for publication early 2019); and Balaam’s curse ( novel in progress) His works have appeared in many sites and journals. Steve blogs at