Don’t ban reporters from West Bank–Mark shouts on TV in Hebrew

Mark on Channel 10

Mark on Channel 10

It’s how you get yourself heard in Israel. I’ve got the pipes for it, but I don’t like to do it…unless someone starts saying that reporters should be kept away from incidents in the West Bank because a Palestinian wrote “Press” on his shirt and then stabbed an Israeli soldier. Holding up his iPhone, the guy–a normally intelligent, thoughtful member of Parliament–said anyway we’ll find out what’s going on because of these things. No, we won’t, I interjected–this has happened before, when the Israeli government banned reporters from most of the West Bank durign the first Palestinian uprising 1987-1993, and what you get is photos and video of staged and fake events, tendentious shots and one-sided “coverage.” In the end he agreed with me. Even though the media isn’t what it used to be–journalists are still better than advocates and amateurs. Usually.

This is happening on Israel TV’s Channel 10 morning show at 7:30 in the morning. There’s more–me saying that today’s journalism is more about clicks than accuracy, that the tendency is to favor the underdog–the Palestinians–and stories that don’t fit into that framework don’t get reported. I get cut off just before I give the best example–Israel’s 2008 peace offer to the Palestinians, which I discovered, but was banned from writing about by AP. But you’ve heard me talk about that, in English even.

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