18 November 09
Jonathan Boyd says MSM coverage of Israel has a direct bearing on the levels of anti-Semitism. That's in spite of what The Guardian's editor, Alan Rusbridger, told Channel 4's Dispatches program.
Perhaps most important, it failed to mention in any detail why some Jewish leaders may feel compelled to support Israel. Leaving aside the politics of the region, the notion that Israel is the ancestral homeland of the Jewish people, or that Israel is the only nation state in the world in which Judaism is mainstream, Jewish culture is the norm and the Hebrew language is widely spoken and celebrated, were all ignored.Boyd goes on to describe being attacked by a Briton in 2002, thanks to irresponsible media coverage of Jenin:
But it is, apparently, much easier to trot out the old antisemitic myth. After all, the public deserves to know what these nasty, rich Jews are up to. And what could possibly be wrong in uncovering the truth? There cannot conceivably be a connection between the way Israel and Jews are presented in the media and antisemitism on the streets of Britain.
Or so Alan Rusbridger would have us believe. In the documentary, he maintained that he found it "difficult to believe" that any journalistic coverage of events in Israel could result in acts of violence against Jews on the streets of Britain.
Well, allow me to present myself as exhibit A. In April 2002, at the height of the Palestinian intifada, media reports began circulating that a massacre had been committed by the Israel Defence Force in Jenin, in the West Bank. Rumours circulated that hundreds of Palestinians had been killed. The BBC suggested 150. Saeb Erekat, interviewed on CNN, claimed 500. Yasser Abed Rabbo intimated 900. The overarching impression was that the IDF had committed a horrific atrocity.Mitch Bard reached a similar conclusion to about rising levels of anti-Semitism in 2002:
On the following Saturday, I was walking to synagogue, wearing my kippah (skull cap) in the north London suburb of Finchley. On the way, I was punched in the face by a young man. It was an entirely unprovoked assault. We were simply crossing paths when he delivered a sudden, forceful, right hook. Taken aback, my first response was to ask why he had done it. "That's what happens to Jews," he responded, "when they behave like that."