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« Distorting Israeli Arab Reality | Main | Reuters lowering standards even further »

Thursday, May 19 2005

Good news from the PA

ShaathHere's an encouraging development from the Palestinian media: Reuters reports that PA Minister of Information Nabil Shaath (pictured) wants to suspend Sheik Ibrahim Mudairis, a Gaza preacher who, in a recent sermon broadcast live on official Palestinian TV, described Jews as a “cancer spreading around the world." Shaath also removed from his own ministry’s web site an Arabic translation of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.



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Yes, good news but note this sly bit of dissimulation by Shaath in the Haaretz version of the Reuters story:

We condemn assault of Judaism as a religion. As Muslims we reject such remarks," said Sha'ath, who is also deputy PA prime minister.

Uh-huh. "Judaism as a religion". No condemnation however, of the perpetual Palestinian assault on Judaism in its embodiment as a nation-state, otherwise known as Israel.

And Shaath is in charge of PA television. How much incitement continues under his watch?

Point the spotlight at them and they will condemn anything they believe the Western infidels might not like, but point it away and the incitement goes on as planned.

Shaath tried to sidestep the doo-doo. He slipped in it instead.

Well, I'm choosing not to be so cynical. It's a start, and I think some credit should be given for that.

It is wrong not to acknowledge these small positive steps by Shaath. But acknowledgement should be accompanied by anger, both from Jews and from Western press, leaders and public that, more than a decade after Oslo and months after Sharm and the ending of Arafat's era, this kind of vicious antisemitism still makes its way into PA-controlled outlets at all.

Public anti-semitism would stop if it was clear to the Palestinians that it actually mattered to the rest of the world. The fact that it is still happening now says something about Palestinian attitudes, but it says a lot, too, about the two-faced West.

Here is the BBC view of the denouncement of the hate filled sermon which was broadcast.

Please note that this broadcast medium only goes out to 1% of Palestinians on the West Bank who favour other Arab stations. So the damge created was less than one might fear but then again the apology and retraction was less valuable also.

A good step in the right direction but there is a lot more to be done by the Palestinians to correct the hate filled imagery they have sent out over decades.

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