Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Reuters' Solomon receives handoff, runs for endzone carrying only a cherry pie

Following a series of stories featuring shoddy research and transparent anti-Israel propaganda, Reuters' correspondent Erika Solomon took a two-month hiatus.  She returns to the pages of Reuters AxisMundi Jerusalem website with more creative distortions and cherry-picking in a story on Hamas suggesting that:
both Israeli and Palestinian populations are looking to see Hamas step up to the plate in negotiations.
Solomon's "evidence" for this notion is a poll conducted by the "Israel Dialogue Institute" which Reuters originally cited here but to which it did not link.  (Solomon does not provide a link either).  Of course, absent the original survey data and methodology, readers are unable to judge the credibility or accuracy of the poll results.  Nor are we are able to assess Reuters' fidelity in communicating the results.  And given Reuters' record of misinforming on survey data in the past, we are left with only hearsay from Reuters suggesting that:
over half of the Israeli public wants to see Hamas brought into negotiations if it recognized Israel

This purported figure is based on respondents' support of a plan discussed last week by Israeli Minister Shaul Mofaz to dialogue with Hamas if the terrorist group were to meet the three conditions set forth by the Quartet, i.e., renounce violence, recognize Israel, and accept all previous agreements negotiated with the Palestinian Authority.  As these terms are the same as those officially endorsed by the government of Israel, it is not surprising that a majority of Israelis might support them as well.

Solomon then leaps from the above to this assertion (in a stand-alone paragraph):
Even more surprising is that among supporters of Likud, Israel’s right-wing political party, 53% of the public approved of negotiating with Hamas.
Note how Solomon omits the very specific conditions under which Israelis purportedly indicated they would agree to negotiations with Hamas.  We know, a trifling detail.

The point of Solomon's piece, headlined with her odious longing "O Hamas where art thou?", appears to be that Hamas is in the ascendancy and can simply wait until the Palestinian Authority collapses and/or elections bring them to power in the West Bank.  But her premise that Israelis are shifting toward an acceptance of Hamas as currently constituted is pure fabrication.

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