Backspin FrontPage
Backspin FrontPage
Media Backspin
About Media Backspin Contact Media Backspin Media Backspin
  Media Backspin
Backspin FrontPage
Media Backspin RSS Feed   [ About RSS ]
Subscribe with Bloglines
Add to My AOL
Subscribe in Bloglines
Subscribe to MyMSN
Subscribe in NewsGator Online
Add to Google Reader or Homepage
ARCHIVES January 2011 December 2010 November 2010 October 2010 September 2010 August 2010 July 2010 June 2010 May 2010 April 2010
Media Backspin
« 'Road Apartheid' Debunked | Main | Anti-semitic poem in UK children's schoolbook »

Sunday, October 23 2005

Dead Jews Aren't News

An article by Tom Gross in the UK Spectator:

Rachel Thaler, aged 16, was blown up at a pizzeria in an Israeli shopping mall. She died after an 11-day struggle for life following a suicide bomb attack on a crowd of teenagers on 16 February 2002.

Even though Thaler was a British citizen, born in London, where her grandparents still live, her death has never been mentioned in a British newspaper.

Rachel Corrie, on the other hand, an American radical who died in 2003 while acting as a human shield during an Israeli anti-terror operation in Gaza, has been widely featured in the British press. According to the Guardian website, she has been written about or referred to on 57 separate occasions in the Guardian alone, including three articles the Saturday before last.

The cult of Rachel Corrie doesn’t stop there. Last week the play, 'My Name is Rachel Corrie', reopened at the larger downstairs auditorium at the Royal Court Theatre (a venue which the New York Times recently described as 'the most important theatre in Europe'). It previously played to sold-out audiences at the upstairs theatre when it opened in April. (It is very rare to revive a play so quickly.)

On 1 November the 'Cantata concert for Rachel Corrie' — co-sponsored by the Arts Council — has its world premiere at the Hackney Empire.

But Rachel Thaler, unlike Rachel Corrie, was Jewish. And unlike Corrie, Jewish victims of Middle East violence have not become a cause célèbre in Britain. This lack of response is all the more disturbing at a time when an increasing number of British Jews feel that there has been a sharp rise in anti-Semitism.

Thaler is by no means the only Jewish Rachel whose violent death has been entirely ignored by the British media. Other victims of the Intifada include Rachel Levy (aged 17, blown up in a grocery store), Rachel Levi (19, shot while waiting for the bus), Rachel Gavish (killed with her husband, son and father while at home celebrating a Passover meal), Rachel Charhi (blown up while sitting in a Tel Aviv cafe, leaving three young children), Rachel Shabo (murdered with her three sons aged 5, 13 and 16 while at home) and Rachel Kol, 53, who worked at a Jerusalem hospital and was killed with her husband in a Palestinian terrorist attack in July a few days after the London bombs.

Corrie's death was undoubtedly tragic but, unlike the death of these other Rachels, it was almost certainly an accident. She was killed when she was hit by an Israeli army bulldozer she was trying to stop from demolishing a structure suspected of concealing tunnels used for smuggling weapons.

Unfortunately for those who have sought to portray Corrie as a peaceful protester, photos of her burning a mock American flag and stirring up crowds in Gaza at a pro-Hamas rally were published by the Associated Press and on Yahoo News on 15 February 2003, a month before she died. (Those photos were not used in the British press.)

While Thaler’s parents, after donating their murdered daughter's organs for transplant surgery, grieved quietly, Corrie’s parents embarked on a major publicity campaign with strong political overtones. They travelled to Ramallah to accept a plaque from Yasser Arafat on behalf of their daughter. They circulated her emails and diary entries to a world media eager to publicise them. They have written op-ed pieces, including a recent one in the Guardian.

The International Solidarity Movement (ISM), the group with which Corrie was affiliated, is routinely described as a ‘peace group’ in the media. Few make any mention of the ISM’s meeting with the British suicide bombers Omar Khan Sharif and Asif Muhammad Hanif who, a few days later, blew up Mike’s Place, a Tel Aviv pub, killing three and injuring dozens, including British citizens. Or of the ISM’s sheltering in its office of Shadi Sukiya, a leading member of Islamic Jihad. Or of the fact that in its mission statement the ISM said 'armed struggle' is a Palestinian 'right'.

According to the 'media co-ordinator' of the ISM, Flo Rosovski, '"Israel" is an illegal entity that should not exist' — which at any rate clarifies the ISM’s idea of peace.

Indeed, partly because of the efforts of Corrie’s fellow activists in the ISM, the Israeli army was unable to stop the flow of weapons through the tunnels near where she was demonstrating. Those weapons were later used to kill Israeli children in the town of Sderot in southern Israel, and elsewhere.

However, in many hundreds of articles on Corrie published in the last two years, most papers have been careful to omit such details. So have actor Alan Rickman and Guardian journalist Katharine Viner, co-creators of 'My Name is Rachel Corrie', leaving almost all the critics who reviewed the play completely ignorant about the background to the events with which it deals.

So in April, when reviewers first wrote about the play, they tended to take it completely at face value. 'Corrie was murdered after joining a non-violent Palestinian resistance organisation,' wrote Emma Gosnell in the Sunday Telegraph. The Evening Standard, for example, described it as a 'true-life tragedy' in which Corrie’s 'unselfish goodness shines through'.

Only one critic (Clive Davis in the Times) saw the play for the propaganda it is. At one point Corrie declares, 'The vast majority of Palestinians right now, as far as I can tell, are engaging in Gandhian non-violent resistance.' As Davis notes, 'Even the late Yasser Arafat might have blushed at that one.'

But ultimately the play, and many of the articles about Corrie that have appeared, are not really about the young American activist who died in such tragic circumstances. They are about promoting a hate-filled and glaringly one-sided view of Israel.



TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Dead Jews Aren't News:



Wow, even on British Jews, the 'news' is out, it is about hate not about so called:"anti zionism"...
Gallery of Truth

An absolutely great article that tells it like it is. It is absolutely infuriating that Rachel Corrie is portrayed as a saint by the British media when in reality she helped terorrists murder innocent women and children just because they were Jewish.
Where has the British Jews been in all this? Why haven't there been any protests at the Rachel plays? Jews are their own worst enemies.
I'm not Jewish but I'm a fierce and outspoken supporter of Israel but sometimes I feel discouraged because it seems that a majority of Jews don't care about Israel or the anti-semitism that exists around the world.
Silence will only strengthen the enemy. If I lived in England I would have been the first to protest the anti-Israeli pro-hamas propaganda Rachel plays. So why haven't the British Jews?
If Jews don't speak out against anti-semitsm or anti-Israeli propganda how can they expect others to?

Nina, a word of encouragement. I am a British Jew who, along with many others, has protested at the blatant anti-semitism inherent in the Rachel Corrie case. In the past 3 years I have 7 letters published in The Independent all in defence of Israel. Here is what I wrote on Rachel Corrie.

Dear Sir

The family of Rachel Corrie is rightfully upset about the loss of their daughter. However their case against Caterpillar or even against the IDF is not justified in my view.

Rachel Corrie was a member of the International Solidarity Movement which ostensibly stands for a peaceful resolution in the Middle East. ISM members through their actions placed themselves in a war zone despite repeated warnings from the Israeli Defence Forces.

Rachel's death, regrettable though it undoubtedly is, is analagous to a child being told not to play on the highway, and then when run down by a vehicle the family sue the manufacturer.

ISM can claim no moral high ground here when they did nothing to dissuade homicide bombers, nor did they offer to ride on Israeli buses. Perhaps if they had taken a more even handed approach Rachel would be alive today.

Yours faithfully

Robert Cowen

"Jews are their own worst enemies. I'm not Jewish but I'm a fierce and outspoken supporter of Israel...." Really?? Hmmmm....thanks for your support.


Please read this Jpost article:
"The first word: Stop whispering"

"He even pleads "why must one shout when a whisper can be heard?"
I would respectfully suggest that in this day and age such an approach emboldens those who seek to transform us into a pariah community. More importantly, it dissuades Jewish youngsters living in a hostile environment from defending themselves in public confrontations against those defaming them. Instead, they are encouraged to behave like "trembling Israelites," grateful for "protection," and conscious above all that they must not rock the boat. "


Try reading an entire comment before posting a reply to it.

Todd. Try thinking before posting. I did read the whole article. My point was...why are Jews referred to as their own worst enemies? I don't think it is true that you can deduce that Jews don't care about Israel or anti-semitism just because they are not picketing against the Rachel Corrie play. Jews are a tiny minority in this world and we do what we can. Anti-semitism can not be "defeated" by us alone. Nina, my tone was sarcastic, my apologies for that. didn't actually contribute anything....

does anyone remember what iran's president remarked about Israel?

Should we not wipe off that president once and for all which is what President Bush wants to do.
Iran will surely nuke America if it gets nuclear power.

Rachel Corrie cared not one bit how many innocent Israeli men, women, and children were butchered by Palestinian terrorists. Her accidental death would not have occurred had she not gone into a closed military zone to interfere with an anti-terrorist operation. She was consumed with a love of violence...particularly when the violence was directed at Jews. Her hatred of Jews ultimately led to her demise!

Ms. Corrie's death was very tragic. Unfortunately, she brought it on herself by going into a closed military zone and interfered with anti-terrorists operations conducted by the Israeli Defense Force. I also found her support of terrorist organizations like HAMAS not only sickening, but indicative of someone who clearly does not care about the many innocent ISRAELI MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN who have died at the hands of these bloodthirsty terrorists. Again, I am sorry Corrie left this Earth at such an early age, but I truly detested her politics. She was neither a hero, nor a martyr despite what many leftists believe.

HR Links

HR Social Media

Featured Blogs

Featured Links

Media Backspin