Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

How the [L.A.] Times Distorted Jenin
The Jewish Journal ^ | May 3, 2002 | Daniel Gordon

Posted on 05/10/2002 4:02:25 PM PDT by My Identity

When I write a screenplay, I start out with an agenda. I decide who my hero is first and who is the villain. Then I fashion scenes to build my dramatic case and make it believable. That is, I believe, exactly what occurred with regard to at least two reporters, Sheila MacVicar of CNN and Tom Miller of the Los Angeles Times, on Tuesday, April 16 in the Jenin refugee camp.

I was there. I saw everything they saw, I heard everything they heard, I smelled everything they did not smell. And the truth is there was no smell of death on that day, despite what Miller wrote in his feature article of April 21.

Miller needed a smell of death that wasn’t there, and MacVicar needed bodies for her story. That was a problem, because absolutely no bodies were found while the press tour, of which we all were a part, was in the Jenin refugee camp. In addition, Miller evidently needed to be seen as an intrepid reporter overcoming Israeli restrictions in order to piece together what really happened.

"What exactly happened in the Jenin camp has been cloaked in mystery, largely because Israel for days banned the entry of rescue workers, journalists and other independent eyes. Reporters who circumvented the restrictions, have pieced together the events of the camp..." Miller wrote in his April 21 article in the Times.

That is very dramatic prose. Unfortunately, where Miller is concerned, it is also untrue. Miller, far from circumventing the restrictions of the Israeli military, rode into the Jenin camp in an Israeli armored personnel carrier with me, courtesy of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).

For the record, I am biased. I am an Israeli American who served in the IDF and was, and continue to be, a peace activist, who has held talks with members of the PLO and Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine long before Oslo. I have had high-level, and sometimes secret, meetings in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, the West Bank and Gaza long before it was legal for an Israeli to do so. I continue to believe that Israel will never have the security it desires without a peaceful Palestinian state next to it, and that the Palestinians will never get the state they want without deciding once and for all to live in peace with Israel.

I went to Jenin to find out what happened there.

"Before the Israeli forces invaded two weeks ago," intoned MacVicar in her lead-in, "this was the crowded center of the Jenin refugee camp. There were apartment houses in twisting, narrow streets, bustling and busy. That neighborhood is now gone, erased by Israeli bulldozers, turned into a river of concrete and twisted steel spreading over two city blocks. Everywhere there is evidence of life interrupted."

Now, let me tell you what there is also evidence of. Before one enters the refugee camp, one passes through the very pleasant little town of Jenin. The entrance to the camp is roughly 100 meters from the rest of the town, which has handsome single-family homes and yards, businesses and apartments. Not a one of those buildings appears to be touched — no bullet holes from Israeli machine guns, not one house bulldozed, indeed, not even a broken window anywhere in sight. All this only 100 meters away from the scene of the fighting.

The reason there is no devastation here is quite simple: No one was shooting at the Israeli reservists from these buildings, and so, quite properly, they did not shoot back.

And who lives in these suburban homes? Are they of a different racial stock, perhaps, and thus were spared? Are they Swiss? No. They are the Palestinian Arab residents of the town of Jenin.

The difference between them and those waiting for the reservists in the booby-trapped camp was a very simple one. They were not terrorists. They were not fighters. Those waiting for the reservists in the camp were.

One reservist sensed MacVicar’s hostility. He was a soft-spoken man who approached her and introduced himself as the reserve unit’s medical officer, Dr. David Zangen. He told her that when the fighting was over, they found photograph albums of children from roughly 6 years of age up through early and mid-teens. It was an album of photos of children who would be the next crop of suicide killers, with notations indicating when each of the children would be ripe. The reporter had no time for the doctor, however.

"Perhaps you should ask yourself why," she said, dismissing him.

"I do, madam," he said, "I ask myself why. I can’t imagine it. I can’t imagine sending one’s child out to be a mass murderer who commits suicide to kill women and children."

"Well, I can explain it," said the reporter. "For me it all comes down to one word, ‘occupation.’"

"But madam," the doctor said, "Jenin hasn’t been occupied for nine years."

MacVicar just turned and walked away. She was looking for scenes of bodies being pulled from the rubble, as will be recalled, and she still hadn’t gotten the footage because none had been found that day. Thus, there would have been ample time for the doctor’s comments, as there would have been space for them in Miller’s article, but they didn’t fit the script.

How did MacVicar solve her body problem? She simply used footage from another day, footage she hadn’t shot, one bare foot sticking out from under a piece of rubble, which she had never seen, which had been shot by someone else when the pickings were better.

I am sure MacVicar and Miller have their own version of these events, and I’m open to hearing their side of the story, which is more consideration than they offered the doctor.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Israel; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: biglie; danielgordon; goebbels; israel; jenin; massacre; palestine; sheilamacvicar; tommiller

1 posted on 05/10/2002 4:02:25 PM PDT by My Identity
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: My Identity; Dog; Jemian; anniegetyourgun; Howlin; JohnHuang2; illstillbe; MozartLover
CNN and the LA Times are busted! Read this! Let everyone you know hear about it! I am soooo aggravated!
2 posted on 05/10/2002 4:07:24 PM PDT by Miss Marple
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: My Identity
For a dose of truth:
WSJ: The Massacre That Wasn't - Part I
Non-evidence and Pali fabrication of evidence
Steyn: The UN is running out of blind eyes to turn
Interesting link on UN backpedaling
WSJ: The Massacre That Wasn't - Part II
Palestinians drop their hyped-up "massacre" charges
The Massacre That Never Was
The testimony of pathological liars
WSJ: The Massacre That Wasn't - Part III
Hey, Jimmy Carter has an opinion too!!
There was No Massacre in Jenin
Gullible acceptance of Pali lies tells much
WSJ: The Massacre That Wasn't - Part IV
Yet more non-evidence and Pali fabrication of evidence
Peres: There wasn't a house that wasn't booby-trapped
WSJ: The Massacre That Wasn't - Part V
The Pali's contradict themselves and blame it on Israel
Steyn: It's time to snap out of Arab fantasy land
Some great Oriana Fallaci quotes/links as well
WSJ: The Massacre That Wasn't - Part VI
Pali grave-digging and UN jury-rigging
Jenin's 'Massacre' Death Toll Reduced to 56
Say it slow: Israel told the truth; Palis did not

An interesting juxtaposition of tales:
Message From An Israeli On The Front Lines
"Entire families exploded themselves! It was horrific."
Palestinian Fighter admits: No Massacre in Jenin
2,000 bombs and booby-traps placed in the camp
Pediatrician: terrorists used children in Jenin camp
Doc: IDF did everything possible to avoid civilian harm
Palestinians Booby-Trap Wheelchair in Jenin
NOTE: The wheelchair was occupied!!
Jenin War Diary of a Hasidic Soldier - Part I
Israeli citizen-soldier describes what went on in Jenin
Massacre Claims Unsupported by Pali Fighters
Pali eyewitnesses all support the Israeli version
Jenin War Diary of a Hasidic Soldier - Part II
There is no army as humane as the IDF
Palestinian fighter's version of the Jenin battle
Pali Plan: Trap Israeli soldiers, then blow them up

The Yellow Press: Controversy, Yes!   Truth, No!
Atrocities of the British Press
Huge amounts of ink devoted to unverified Pali tales
Reporters Back Down From 'Massacre' Reports
World press forced to face the truth: No Massacre
Jenin: The Big Lie. Fighting the Media War
World media falls for Goebbels's 'Big Lie' ... again
How the [L.A.] Times Distorted Jenin
First, you start with an agenda...
The Media and 'The Massacre'
Quick to report fantasy, slow to correct errors
The Big Jenin Lie
Pali Propaganda Panned Promptly - Thanks FR!

We're from the UN. We're Here to Help.
The Overseers of Jenin
UN runs camps that are centers for terror
U.N.'s Point Man In Jenin
Arafat's various militias count on Mr. Roed-Larsen
Guilty until proven guilty
Surprise! UN has a not-so-hidden agenda
The Jenin Probe Ends
UN unhappy about Israel's possible exhoneration

And so, in conclusion:
The 'Jenin Massacre' Hoax
Living in a world of monstrous moral inversion
The Phantom Massacre
War Crimes in Jenin were committed by the Palis
Terrorists admit they carried out atrocities
Fanatics use women, children, old men, cripples
Jenin's War Criminals
What the Palestinians did was the real war crime

3 posted on 05/10/2002 4:10:06 PM PDT by My Identity
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Miss Marple
What you say? CNN has an agenda?? Surely you jest!

This ... is CNN
The Criminal News Network

4 posted on 05/10/2002 4:14:01 PM PDT by My Identity
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Miss Marple
I just hope this has been a REAL eye opener for the Jewish community! I heard some Jewish clergy calling for a boycott of the LA Times! BTW, where are all the Spielbergs and Babs from HELLywood in this matter? Their silence is deafening!! BUNCH OF EXCREMENT HYPOCRITES!! I hope the LA Times suffers a financial catastrophe!
5 posted on 05/10/2002 4:20:41 PM PDT by RoseofTexas
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: dennisw
6 posted on 05/10/2002 4:21:41 PM PDT by My Identity
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Miss Marple
WOW...McVicar didn't even try to hide her feelings.....stunning!

Remember Jane there is another news source now ......people are seeing thru the bias on CNN...

7 posted on 05/10/2002 4:22:20 PM PDT by Dog
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: My Identity
Shocking......NOT. Thanks for posting this.


8 posted on 05/10/2002 4:33:01 PM PDT by marylina
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: My Identity
Sheilah MacVicar's a loser and predator just like the loser Pallies. Something in common!
9 posted on 05/10/2002 4:38:22 PM PDT by dennisw
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Miss Marple
CNN and the LA Times are busted!
But you know the drill. Journalism is negative and superficial for business reasons--they'll be (gasp!) ignored if they don't find scary reports to sling out at us. Or if their reports are well-considered and moderate, meaning that it takes time and perspective to create them, leaving them vulnerable to being scooped.

The "massacre at Jenin" is the Rodney King police brutality case. No contrary evidence is acceptable since police brutality makes a "great" (too scary to ignore) story. And since the Israelis are a nation of liberals who've been mugged, they're too much like American conservatives to require any trial before sentencing.

10 posted on 05/10/2002 4:59:18 PM PDT by conservatism_IS_compassion
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: conservatism_IS_compassion; Rjaynej;
the Israelis are a nation of liberals who've been mugged

LOL Bump.

11 posted on 05/10/2002 6:23:45 PM PDT by monkeyshine
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: dennisw

12 posted on 05/10/2002 6:36:59 PM PDT by My Identity
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: My Identity
You are fantastic!!

13 posted on 05/10/2002 6:45:12 PM PDT by AnnaZ
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: AnnaZ
You are fantastic!!

Thank you. It sort of took on a life of its own.
14 posted on 05/10/2002 7:01:38 PM PDT by My Identity
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: Miss Marple
CNN and the LA Times are busted!

LA Times = liberal rag. Not even useful to line your parrot's cage with -- too insulting to the bird.
-- A Former Angelino

15 posted on 05/10/2002 10:10:37 PM PDT by pariah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Miss Marple
The LA Slimes and the NY Slimes should be made into psychological case studies in group dynamics. How these two news organs departed so completely from reality is a fascinating and engaging story in and of itself.
16 posted on 05/10/2002 10:14:09 PM PDT by Lazamataz
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: My Identity;Clovis_Skeptic
Wow, this is fantastic! Thanks so much for posting this. I am beyond outraged at these so called journalists, and totally fed up with the nonsense of "occupied lands".
Thank God there is Free Republic, because we cannot get the truth from our so called press!
17 posted on 05/10/2002 10:17:41 PM PDT by ladyinred
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Miss Marple;Common Tator;Bitwhacker
Thank you, Miss Marple ...

When I would visit my brother ... who lived near Los Angelos ... I would read the LA Times ... and feel the need to wash my hands ... and not because of the newsprint ... feh ... ...

18 posted on 05/11/2002 11:04:39 AM PDT by illstillbe
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson