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July 27th, 2014
12:45 PM ET

Rula Jebreal's view of American media bias against Palestinians

Former MSNBC contributor Rula Jebreal explains why she has been critical of American media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.


Filed under: Reliable Sources
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. GE

    Isreal is doing what the Europeans did to the north American natives .kill and steal their land till they give up

    August 10, 2014 at 11:51 am | Reply
  2. Susan

    Are Palestinian journalists afraid to speak out about the facts of the conflict because of retaliation by hamas? Jebreal always seems to sidestep the questions and the facts.

    August 9, 2014 at 3:03 pm | Reply
  3. Ernest Smith

    I'm amazed that when they do interview Palestinian spokespeople, they always avoid the questions. They just seem to rant about the killings of women and children. Questions about why they are hiding weapons in schools and firing rockets from crowded areas never get a real response. Just more ranting about the Israeli's. For the life of me, I don't understand how a leadership of a country or faction lives in Qatar in villas and not in the territory they represent. Why doesn't someone interview a Palestinian on the street and confront them about how Hamas is using them to push the Hamas agenda, and point out that Hamas really doesn't care about the civilian deaths. Hamas leaders all seem to live somewhere out of harms way.

    August 3, 2014 at 3:30 pm | Reply
    • Susan

      Perhaps the media should better identify them as hamas spokespeople?

      August 9, 2014 at 3:04 pm | Reply
  4. Michael Bauer

    It seems that the best solution would be if both sides just wiped each other out. We'd have fewer people around and more resources left for those of us trying to find solutions based on rationality rather than religion.

    August 3, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Reply
  5. reality

    Rula,.. problem: Hamas terrorists use their women and children to protect their missles and bombs.... as shields...any ...agreement with Israel will nullify Hamas's reason to exist.. Hamas's reason to exist is to wipe Israel off the planet...killers, liars, deceivers control the women and children....why does the media act as if there are 2 normal, reasonable, truthful sides wanting and end to violence... The genocidal terrorsts; Hamas and 10's of millions of other muslim terrorists in the world want Israel burnt..this is their rallying cry for more than 66 years....There are way too many violent extremist muslims on your side to achieve anything of value...sorry....Hamas WANTS civilian casualities,.... the media is doing exactly what Hamas wants...all these civilians elected/chose the terrorists... disgusting... they must be stopped....

    August 3, 2014 at 12:23 pm | Reply
  6. Susan

    Palestinian journalist rula jebreal is making the same mistakes most Palestinian spokespeople make, she is ignoring the elephant in the room, the terrorist organization hamas and it's agenda. Palestinians will be victims of hamas terrorist actions until they disavow and help crush them.

    Ignoring the facts does not make her a credible spokesperson or commentator.

    August 3, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
  7. Worthy

    Point 7 was inadvertently omitted as I hit the send button prematurely (and similarly, excuse the typos):

    7. There has been a long history of Palestinian aggression and resistence to the Israeli occupation, and even the mere existence of Israel, an absence of constructive leadership, particularly on the Palestinian side, and general antagonism and hostile language and in many cases military or terrorist actions against Israel by the Arab world generally.

    July 27, 2014 at 9:28 pm | Reply
  8. Worthy

    The problem with the Israeli/West bank/Gaza coverage is that it focuses on the immediate exchange of hostilities, for which there is ample justification for Israel's response and incursion. The violence, however, sprung out of the kidnapping and murder of the three Israelis and the Palestinian youths, which was only an ignition point for the flames of war. However, certain aspects of the tensions are self-apparent but submerged in the dialogue to the propaganda wars too justify the Hamas rockets or Israeli invasion.

    1. The West Bank is occupied territory into which many Palestinians were forced out of their homeland (much as the Jews were forced out of their Eastern and Central European homes) into what today constitutes the nation of Israel by the European Colonial powers and the US in the aftermath of a war in which the Palestinians were not active players.

    2. Israel built a wall to, among other things, preclude West Bank Palestinians from emigrating back into their homeland or engaging freely in cross-border travel.

    3. Israel continues to install settlements in the West Bank in contravention of the appropriation of the UN and the international community, as well as applicable law or commitment to a peace settlement involving some form of nationhood for Palestine.

    4. Gaza has been subjected to an Israeli and Egyptian blockade of land, sea and air passage since 2007, and conditions in Gaza were before the incursion and certainly are now of almost inhuman proportions. These conditions contribute to the radicalization of the populace.

    5. Hamas, a terrorist political and military entity, has secured control of Gaza at least to a great extend as a result of the foregoing. As a vastly inferior military force, including the absence of any air capacity, Hamas resorts to what we might call "guerrilla" tactics that expose innocent civilians to death, injury, and loss of their homes. In the propaganda wars, Israel claims this is an immoral tactic that pal css no value on human life and leaves Israel with no option but to try to target military capacity with unavoidable collateral damage, while Hamas claims the Israelis are knowingly or at least negligently targeting innocents. The reality is that if Hamas were to engage the Israeli military in a conventional manner, their weaponry and soldiers would be easily and swiftly annihilated by a superior ground, sea and air force. This is like arguing the Viet Cong should have not embedded their troops in tunnels, but exposed them and their arms to the superior American air, sea and ground forces – in essence, the position that the opponent should engage in "fair" fighting tactics when the outcome of doing so would be predetermined.

    6. Hamas takes, and historically the PLO and Fatah took, strident positions that Israel has no right to exist, positions that on their face present an insoluble barrier to Israel entering into any settlement with the Palestinians.

    My view is that if the American media would address these far bigger and more profoundly impactful issues in a balanced way, rather than just focusing on the propaganda wars of who is right and who is wrong in the present hostilities, perhaps Israel, Hamas and Fatah could be pressured to seriously engage in a more permanent and secure two-sate solution, perhaps accompanied by some American assurance of providing some level of security to each state. Obviously, a predicate for any resolution – but not any dialogue – would be for the Palestinians to unite under a common government that accepts the Israeli state and renounces terrorism with the teeth to enforce the latter. That solution would seem to require a significant change of position by Hamas or its defeat politically.

    To me, taking the longer view of history, it is evident that the present status quo cannot last forever – relative power, regional and world political opinion are bound to change and evolve in ways that are not easily predictable. Securing some sort of stability and an evolving economic and political relationship and interdependence between Israel and Palestine, both with the sense that they exist as permanent and equal (under the eyes of the law) national entities gives the greets level of predicability to the future.

    As to Ms, Jabreal's position, I agree the American media has not dealt with the competing forces in the Israel/Palestine dynamic in a manner that would provoke a more constructive dialogue in this country that could give the American President the popular support to apply the appropriate pressures on the actors to forge the necessary compromises.

    July 27, 2014 at 9:07 pm | Reply
  9. News Watcher

    I agree. MSNBC is disgustingly biased.

    July 27, 2014 at 6:17 pm | Reply
  10. Michael Bauer

    Here's are three simple things Palestinians need to do to get more Americans to at least understand them:

    1. Find colloquial American English speaker
    2. Stay calm
    3. Answer the damn questions

    I understand this is horrible for Gaza but the constant screaming incoherence is not helping. Certainly not what Ms. Jebreal was doing but every other commentator seems to do that.

    July 27, 2014 at 2:01 pm | Reply
    • bala

      Hey Michael Bauer, I want to see how calm you will be if you are forced out of your homes, surrounded by barricades and your home town converted into a jail... all your calmness and logical thinking will go through the window..remember how Americans irrationaly attacked other nationals after 9/11??? where was the rational thinking on the part of Americans? where was the rational thinking when America attacked Iraq which had nothing to do with 9/11?? you hypocrite!!!

      August 7, 2014 at 12:30 am | Reply
      • Michael Bauer

        Yes, you're right. If I was being forced out of my home, surrounded by barricades, and have my home town converted to a jail, I would probably not be as calm and logical. I'm not, though, and I was trying to understand the issues more clearly so I can have a more informed opinion. As of the time of this post, about all I heard from the Palestinian side were incoherent rants by older men that weren't living in Gaza either. That seemed to have changed and I started hearing clearer arguments that helped me understand and ultimately be far more sympathetic to the plight of Gazans. I will always strive for rationality and clear thinking, avoiding prejudice such as that you're displaying by assuming that since I'm an American I supported the war in Iraq and am a hypocrite. I did not support the war in Iraq, it was pretty clear to me we were being lied to, but there wasn't anything I could do about it other than suffer the insults of my fellow countrymen by speaking out against the war. You might want to think about attacking those that are trying to see things from your side and merely asking for help in doing so.

        August 7, 2014 at 11:16 am |

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