Fake news vs. biased news in US’ political system
There is a big debate in America about the issue of “fake news” allegedly used to influence the minds of American voters to support Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton.
The issue of “fake news” dominates the American news media, and that’s startling because the mainstream American news media is the ambassador of creating and promoting “fake news” all the time. They just do it in another form called “biased news.”
The American news media is filled with “fake/biased news” especially when it comes to denigrating Arabs and Muslims and defending Israel. Much of it stems from Israel, which commits hundreds of millions of dollars to creating “fake news” called Public Relations propaganda.
A good example of this “fake/bias news” is how the media covered an incident that took place in 2010, about one year after President Barack Obama gave his moving but empty Cairo speech promising justice and fairness for the Arab people. On May 31, 2010, heavily armed Israeli soldiers attacked the Mavi Marmara, a civilian ship that was 150 miles from its borders in international waters. The Mavi Marmara was among six ships hoping to bring food, clothing and other basic essentials to the people of the besieged Gaza Strip. More importantly, the activists wanted to put a spotlight on Israel’s oppressive embargo against the 2 million imprisoned civilians there.
During the terrorist attack, 10 civilians were murdered in cold blood by Israeli soldiers. Scores more were injured. One of those murdered was an American citizen, Furkan Dogan. But Americans didn’t care because the biased, racist American news media played down the fact that Dogan was American. And they certainly didn’t dare to refer to the Israeli assault as a “terrorist attack,” which it was. Everyday in America, the mainstream news media publishes “fake/biased news” that twists, distorts and fabricates details to protect Israel against accusations of atrocities and violent crimes against Christians and Muslims. The biased American news media has used “fake/biased news” to blur the facts about dozens of Americans who have been killed by Israel over the years.
Among those killed by Israel but buried in “fake news” include: Orwah Hammad (2014); Rachel Corrie (2003); 34 American servicemen on the USS Liberty (1967); Dr. Khaled Salah and his son Muhammad (2004). Mohammad Abdul-Rahman Ayyad, and Abdul-Rahman Wajeeh Barghouthi (2015); Mahmoud Shaalan (2016). That’s just a partial list of the Americans killed by Israel that have been buried in “fake/biased news.” Each victim deserves your attention.
Israel spends millions to create “fake/biased news” that the biased American news media reports almost word-for-word, and to push the media to embrace outrageously immoral concepts that redirect all blame for all violence against Arabs, Muslims and the Arab world.
One of those immoral concepts is “extrajudicial killing,” the murder of a person outside of the rule of law. That’s a word Israel helped create. That’s when Israel kills an Arab or Muslim civilian without having to go to court to prove that they did something bad, before being executed.
Another immoral concept that Israel uses and the media protects with “fake/biased news” is the practice of “collective punishment.” That’s when Israel not only kills a Christian or Muslim civilian who is alleged (but never proven in a court of law) of committing an act of violence. But then Israel takes it one step further and also punishes the victim’s relatives and neighbors. The Israeli’s destroy the family home and push the family into the street, often taking them to the border of Jordan or Egypt. Of course, the racist anti-Arab American news media doesn’t cover the story like that. Instead, they brush over the facts with “fake news,” that it was terrorism and that’s all you need to know. They quote Israelis, publish Israel’s press releases and present the “fake news” as facts to the American people, who apparently are feeble minded when it comes to Israeli injustice.
That “fake news” bias phenomena continues in America’s mainstream news media. The most recent “fake news” is reported by Israel that Palestinians are responsible for spreading wildfires in Northern Israel. In truth, Palestinian citizens of Israel have as much to lose as non-Arab Israeli citizens who control the country and Palestinians are fighting the fires side by side with Israelis.
Reflecting the racist nature of Israeli society, though, the Israeli media is calling the fires “an arson Intifada.” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has blamed the fires on arsonists, pointing fingers at Palestinians. And America’s media just takes what they are handed and passes it along to the American people. Unverified. Unconfirmed. “Fake news.”
The mainstream American news media ignores or downplays Israel’s atrocities, but exaggerates atrocities allegedly committed by Palestinians and Arabs. That’s “fake news,” of course. Real reporting would show that one of the first fires in Israel occurred near Neve Shalom/Wahat Salam, the Israeli-Arab peace settlement located in Israel near Jerusalem, where I once proudly served as a board member. Maybe Israeli settlers are starting the fires to destroy Arab lands? Why isn’t Netanyahu talking about that?
Unfortunately, in today’s world, that’s not something that the biased mainstream American media will be debating. If anyone wants to stop “fake news” from being spread, all they have to do is start with America’s mainstream news media. Because that is where the problem starts.
• Ray Hanania is an award-winning former journalist and Palestinian American political columnist.
He can be reached at [email protected].