Friday, April 30, 2010

Reuters pathologically unwilling to hold Palestinians accountable for their behavior

Read through hundreds of Reuters stories on the Middle East conflict and of the many constitutional biases demonstrated by its Bureau staff, one that features perhaps most prominently is the utter refusal to accord any responsibility to the Palestinians for their own decisions and actions.  As noted by Charles Krauthammer and Elliott Abrams, this infantilizing of the Palestinian Arabs by Western apologists in media and the government serves to reward Palestinian intransigence and perpetuate the conflict.

In a story about a speech by Secretary of State Clinton before the American Jewish Committee, Reuters correspondent Arshad Mohammed once again nursemaids the Palestinians:
President Barack Obama's efforts to revive peace talks have been stymied by a disagreement over Jewish settlement construction that has strained ties between Washington and its close ally Israel and by divisions among the Palestinians.
With his nebulous reference to "divisions among the Palestinians", Mohammed is presumably referring to the split between the Palestinian Authority under Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas in Gaza.  Yet, this split is completely irrelevant to Abbas' continuing rejection of negotiations with Israel.  Proof of this can be seen in Abbas' participation in the Annapolis conference in November of 2007 which led to nearly a year of peace talks with Israel under former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and resulted in an extraordinary -- but unrequited -- settlement offer from Olmert.  In the meantime, Hamas continued to howl and Israel continued to build in Jerusalem as well as in Judea and Samaria (the "West Bank") and there was nary a peep of protest by the Palestinians under Abbas' authority.

Thus, it's quite clear that the current effort to bring the Palestinians back to the table has been "stymied" not by Jewish settlements nor Palestinian "divisions" but rather by Palestinian obduracy in the face of what they perceive as an opportunity to gain further concessions from the Israelis before the talks begin.

More like the cunning of an old fox than the naivete of a newborn.

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