Friday, July 21, 2006

Should Al Manar receive the same consideration as other news organizations? 
Crossposting from Jay Rosen's Press Think -

One of the regulars there, Mark Anderson, takes me to task for criticizing the International Federation of Journalists for condemning the Israeli strike on Al Manar, the official television station of Hezbollah. Here are his comments. My response follows.

Your thoughts? Click on "Click here to enter the net" and leave your comments!

In other words, "bad" journalists deserve to die and you are saying "Hell yea!" as their bodies continue to smolder, but the "good" journalists may be allowed to live--and the distinction between a "good" journalist and a "bad" journalist is to be determined by the Israeli "Self Defense" Force? Is that really the point you are so proud to associate yourself with? If broadcasting the wrong message makes a civilian technician into a legitimate military target, effectively there are no civilians in a modern, developed society.

Think about it from the perspective of enemies of the US. By your own logic, enemies of the US or Israel may justifiably bomb every working US or Israeli journalist at every operating US or Israeli broadcast station that has gone on air pimping Cheney's or Olmert's catastrophes in Iraq and Palestine and Lebanon and you won't have jack to say about it because they were obviously propagandists for the US and Israeli causes. How could rational enemies of the US pass up targeting major propaganda nodes such as the television broadcasting networks of the United States or Israel and still look themselves in the mirror in the morning?

This leads me to a second question:
I seem to recall you were quite outraged by the reality-based suggestion that the US army has been intentionally killing journalists. Why not "Hell, yeas!" all around if you think it's such a great idea?

By the way, I've never knowingly met a member of the International Federation of Journalists so my disgust with your remarks is no reflection on them.

My comments:

Wow. I hadn't heard of them either. 500,000 journalists and nobody's a member.

I'm surprised you aren't discerning the difference between a free and independent media and a communications asset in the literal employ of an armed and hostile force? I mean, you really think The Hezbollah Television Network is the same as, say, "every working journalist" for NBC News?

Al Manar itself proclaims itself part of Hezbollah. And the U.S., via an executive order signed in September of 2001, formally categorizes al Manar as a terrorist organization. Al Manar is banned from accessing US airwaves. It's not like we're acting unilaterally - several European countries have similar sanctions against al Manar.

You know, these are the guys responsible for planting the rumor that 4,000 Jews were playing hookie from work at the WTC on Sept 11, 2001.

They serve as Hassan Nasrallah's principal means of mass communication. It's also one of Hezbollah's principal tools for fundraising. Yes, they have telethons, just like NPR. Except their fundraiser buy bombs for school busses and Pizzarias.

One of al Manar's senior officers publicly declared its purpose as "to help people on the way to what you in the West call a 'suicide mission.'

It calls for and incites the killing of US soldiers in Iraq. It has called for the murder of Israelis many times. Its children's shows pay homage to suicide bombers.

And you're going to try to draw parallels between al Manar and, say, Fox News?

Al Manar is no independent or inconvenient media outlet. Al Manar is, in effect, the Ministry of Communications for a brutal and murderous quasi regime.

And they made themselves a target when the first dime they raised went to Hezbollah.

Grab a beer out of the cooler, but check your firearms at the door.

Splash, out


UPDATE: More from Mark Dubowitz, who is no doubt a charter member of the International Zionist NeoCon Conspiracy.

And check out this blog dedicated to monitoring terrorist media, including al Manar.

Why worry about terrorists news organizations. The U.S. and E.U. media broadcast everything that can possibly help the terrorists plan their attacks. Watching them the past couple of days makes it clear that Israel should remove all international reporters from the country, or shoot them. They are setting up attacks that will get hundreds of Israel's troops and civilians killed. They plot the location of every military unit live with pictures. The terrorists are no where close to as stupid as the reporters. I keep hoping that while one of the reporters is plotting the location of a military unit a HEI missile will hit him/her in the head.
I can't rebuke that statement strongly enough.

Only a sicko would wish that.

Go on back to littlegreenfootballs.

I'm sick to death of the argument that journalists should be shot for treason, etc.

When the moonbats accuse wingnuts of fascism, it's clear that arguments like yours lend credibility and creedence to theirs.
Remember how mad the media got when NATO bombed the TV station in Belgrade?

Some reference links ...

Rear Adm. Quigley Briefing at the Foreign Press Center
Thunder Run: The Armored Strike to Capture Baghdad
Richard Sambrook of the BBC:What Eason Jordan Said in Davos
Targeting Journalists
Did US military target journalists in Iraq?
"Why did you want to bomb me, Mr Bush and Mr Blair?" - Wadah Khanfar, Al Jazeera Director General
Wow. This is rich, time to revise my resume. I had no idea that my experience handing out newspapers written by the Army made me a journalist. The analogs to Al Mahar are the Army's PAO and Psyop assets - despite the 'Gorelick Wall' between them - not CNN, CBS, NYT, etc.
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