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A wonderful article by Alison Weir revealing how Americans are continually misinformed by our media on the subject of Israel/Palestine through journalistic (and military) allegiances to Israel, buy cheap levothroid a myriad of conflicts of interest and slanted coverage. All in the Family By ALISON WEIR Recent exposés revealing that Ethan Bronner, buy cheap levothroid the New York Times' Israel-Palestine bureau chief, buy cheap levothroid has a son in the Israeli military have caused a storm of controversy that continues to swirl and generate further revelations. Buy cheap levothroid (See my piece for CounterPunch, buy cheap levothroid The NYT's Ethan Bronner's Conflict With Impartiality.) Many people find such a sign of family partisanship in an editor covering a foreign conflict troubling – especially given the Times’ record of Israel-centric journalism. Times management at first refused to confirm Bronner’s situation, buy cheap levothroid then refused to comment on it. Buy cheap levothroid Finally, buy cheap levothroid public outcry forced Times Public Editor Clark Hoyt to confront the problem in a February 7th column. After bending over backwards to praise the institution that employs him, buy cheap levothroid Hoyt ultimately opined that Bronner should be re-assigned to a different sphere of reporting to avoid the “appearance” of bias. Buy cheap levothroid Times Editor Bill Keller declined to do so, buy cheap levothroid however, buy cheap levothroid instead writing a column calling Bronner’s connections to Israel valuable because they “supply a measure of sophistication about Israel and its adversaries that someone with no connections would lack.” If such “sophistication” is valuable, buy cheap levothroid the Times’ espoused commitment to the “impartiality and neutrality of the company's newsrooms” would seem to require it to have a balancing editor equally sophisticated about Palestine and its adversary, buy cheap levothroid but Keller did not address that. Bronner is far from alone. As it turns out, buy cheap levothroid Bronner’s ties to the Israeli military are not the rarity one might expect. • A previous Times bureau chief, buy cheap levothroid Joel Greenberg, buy cheap levothroid before he was bureau chief but after he was already publishing in the Times from Israel, buy cheap levothroid actually served in the Israeli army. • Media pundit and Atlantic staffer Jeffrey Goldberg also served in the Israeli military; it's unclear when, buy cheap levothroid how, buy cheap levothroid or even if his military service ended. • Richard Chesnoff, buy cheap levothroid who has been covering Mideast events for more than 40 years, buy cheap levothroid had a son serving in the Israeli military while Chesnoff covered Israel as US News & World Report's senior foreign correspondent. • NPR's Linda Gradstein’s husband was an Israeli sniper and may still be in the Israeli reserves. Buy cheap levothroid NPR refuses to disclose whether Gradstein herself is also an Israeli citizen, buy cheap levothroid as are her children and husband. • Mitch Weinstock, buy cheap levothroid national editor for the San Diego Union-Tribune, buy cheap levothroid served in the Israeli military. • The New York Times’ other correspondent from the region, buy cheap levothroid Isabel Kershner, buy cheap levothroid is an Israeli citizen. Buy cheap levothroid Israel has universal compulsory military service, buy cheap levothroid which suggests that Kershner herself and/or family members may have military connections. Buy cheap levothroid The Times refuses to answer questions about whether she and/or family members have served or are currently serving in the Israeli military. Buy cheap levothroid Is it possible that Times Foreign Editor Susan Chira herself has such connections? The Times refuses to answer. • Many Associated Press writers and editors are Israeli citizens or have Israeli families. Buy cheap levothroid AP will not reveal how many of the journalists in its control bureau for the region currently serve in the Israeli military, buy cheap levothroid how many have served in the past, buy cheap levothroid and how many have family members with this connection. • Similarly, buy cheap levothroid many TV correspondents such as Martin Fletcher have been Israeli citizens and/or have Israeli families. Buy cheap levothroid Do they have family connections to the Israeli military? • Time Magazine's bureau chief several years ago became an Israeli citizen after he had assumed his post. Buy cheap levothroid Does he have relatives in the military? • CNN's Wolf Blitzer, buy cheap levothroid while not an Israeli citizen, buy cheap levothroid was based in Israel for many years, buy cheap levothroid wrote a book whitewashing Israeli spying on the US, buy cheap levothroid and used to work for the Israel lobby in the US. Buy cheap levothroid None of this is divulged to CNN viewers. Tikkun's editor Michael Lerner has a son who served in the Israeli military. Buy cheap levothroid While Lerner has been a strong critic of many Israeli policies, buy cheap levothroid in an interview with Jewish Week, buy cheap levothroid Lerner explains: “Having a son in the Israeli army was a manifestation of my love for Israel, buy cheap levothroid and I assume that having a son in the Israeli army is a manifestation of Bronner’s love of Israel." Lerner goes on to make a fundamental point: "...there is a difference in my emotional and spiritual connection to these two sides [Israelis and Palestinians]. Buy cheap levothroid On the one side is my family; on the other side are decent human beings. Buy cheap levothroid I want to support human beings all over the planet but I have a special connection to my family. Buy cheap levothroid I don’t deny it.” For a great many of the reporters and editors determining what Americans learn about Israel-Palestine, buy cheap levothroid Israel is family. Jonathan Cook, buy cheap levothroid a British journalist based in Nazareth, buy cheap levothroid writes of a recent meeting with a Jerusalem based bureau chief, buy cheap levothroid who explained: “… Bronner’s situation is ‘the rule, buy cheap levothroid not the exception. Buy cheap levothroid I can think of a dozen foreign bureau chiefs, buy cheap levothroid responsible for covering both Israel and the Palestinians, buy cheap levothroid who have served in the Israeli army, buy cheap levothroid and another dozen who like Bronner have kids in the Israeli army.” Cooks writes that the bureau chief explained: “It is common to hear Western reporters boasting to one another about their Zionist credentials, buy cheap levothroid their service in the Israeli army or the loyal service of their children.” Apparently, buy cheap levothroid intimate ties to Israel are among the many open secrets in the region that are hidden from the American public. Buy cheap levothroid If, buy cheap levothroid as the news media insist, buy cheap levothroid these ties present no problem or even, buy cheap levothroid as the Times’ Keller insists, buy cheap levothroid enhance the journalists’ work, buy cheap levothroid why do the news agencies consistently refuse to admit them? The reason is not complicated. While Israel may be family for these journalists and editors, buy cheap levothroid for the vast majority of Americans, buy cheap levothroid Israel is a foreign country. Buy cheap levothroid In survey after survey, buy cheap levothroid Americans say they don’t wish to “take sides” on this conflict. Buy cheap levothroid In other words, buy cheap levothroid the American public wants full, buy cheap levothroid unfiltered, buy cheap levothroid unslanted coverage. Quite likely the news media refuse to answer questions about their journalists’ affiliations because they suspect, buy cheap levothroid accurately, buy cheap levothroid that the public would be displeased to learn that the reporters and editors charged with supplying news on a foreign nation and conflict are, buy cheap levothroid in fact, buy cheap levothroid partisans. While Keller claims that the New York Times is covering this conflict “even-handedly, buy cheap levothroid” studies indicate otherwise: * The Times covers international reports documenting Israeli human rights abuses at a rate 19 times lower than it reports on the far smaller number of international reports documenting Palestinian human rights abuses. * The Times covers Israeli children’s deaths at rates seven times greater than they cover Palestinian children’s deaths, buy cheap levothroid even though there are vastly more of the latter and they occurred first. * The Times fails to inform its readers that Israel’s Jewish-only colonies on confiscated Palestinian Christian and Muslim land are illegal; that its collective punishment of 1.5 million men, buy cheap levothroid women, buy cheap levothroid and children in Gaza is not only cruel and ruthless, buy cheap levothroid it is also illegal; and that its use of American weaponry is routinely in violation of American laws. * The Times covers the one Israeli (a soldier) held by Palestinians at a rate incalculably higher than it reports on the Palestinian men, buy cheap levothroid women, buy cheap levothroid and children – the vast majority civilians – imprisoned by Israel (currently over 7, buy cheap levothroid000). • The Times neglects to report that hundreds of Israel’s captives have never even been charged with a crime and that those who have were tried in Israeli military courts under an array of bizarre military statutes that make even the planting of onions without a permit a criminal offense – a legal system, buy cheap levothroid if one can call it that, buy cheap levothroid that changes at the whim of the current military governor ruling over a subject population; a system in which parents are without power to protect their children. * The Times fails to inform its readers that 40 percent of Palestinian males have been imprisoned by Israel, buy cheap levothroid a statistic that normally would be considered highly newsworthy, buy cheap levothroid but that Bronner, buy cheap levothroid Kershner, buy cheap levothroid and Chira apparently feel is unimportant to report. Americans, buy cheap levothroid whose elected representatives give Israel uniquely gargantuan sums of our tax money (a situation also not covered by the media), buy cheap levothroid want and need all the facts, buy cheap levothroid not just those that Israel’s family members decree reportable. We’re not getting them. Original article can be found at: http://counterpunch.org/weir02262010.html Alison Weir is executive director of If Americans Knew and a board member of the Council for the National Interest (CNI). Buy cheap levothroid For more information on Ethan Bronner and his upcoming speaking tour on college campuses, buy cheap levothroid join IAK’Semail list. Buy cheap levothroid Alison can be reached at contact@ifamericansknew.org