[chinese blood, irish heart] - DEFUNCT: BIAS!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


Israeli children encouraged to write messages on munitions

Media coverage of Middle East conflicts is always tricky - how do we as journalists report on the most volatile region on earth to international audiences? In an ideal world, news organisations should provide an objective and unbiased view of all sides. But unfortunately this traditionalist view is frequently used as a shield for either incompetence or hidden motives.

In recent years the notion of objectivity has further been eroded by the existence of such jokes like Fox News and the 'war on terror.' I've been watching CNN and CBS coverage and I'm sick of it all already. A lot of people say the coverage is biased towards Israeli civilians but I don't see that because there are constant reports of civilian casualties + interviews on both sides. But they however do engage more with Israeli civilians, asking more questions etc., obviously because they speak better english! This will in turn makes us more sympathetic towards Israelis. But the general consensus is (in Europe anyway) is that Israeli is the agressor and needs to halt its war machine. I don't see any banners telling Hezbollah to stop! (That's cos they know their message is more likely heard by Israel, def not Hezbollah anyway). Speaking of which, my editor Michael Chugani was recently invited to the Israeli consulate to discuss 'how to improve the Israeli image overseas.'

I'm also sick of journo's embedded with the IDF forces. How come you guys never have footage of Katuysha rockets firing or Hezbollah? If it weren't for sensitive political issues, we'd be getting more balanced pictures instead of constant Israeli artillery and wounded soldiers being cared for. They probably won't even try to cover it from Hezbollah's side if they could... why? For fears of being branded a terrorist-sympathiser, anti-semite and a rebuking from Washington no doubt. Just like how Israeli anti-war protestors were abused by their fellow countryfolk for being anti-Israeli and even throwing rocks at them. There's nothing worse than a cocktail of nationalism and bias. Sure we have freedom of expression but that still won't change the mindsets of others, no will it make any budge in our government's policies. That's the real harm of entrenched biases and the mainstream media is not doing it any good. You know, if you do want the lesser of evils, just get the live wires from Reuters/AP etc - snippets of information rather than listening to cheesy sentiments from some drama-queen journo with a pole up their ass.