Sunday, January 16, 2011

RMEW wins a round; Reuters "adapts" racist rhetoric

In our post just below, we noted Reuters use of the racist and anachronistic appellation, Arab East Jerusalem, designating the Old City of Jerusalem where Jews were driven out by Arab armies in 1948-49, their homes gutted, synagogues turned to rubble, and cemeteries desecrated.  Of course, Reuters doesn't provide the historical context under which Jerusalem became (overnight) "Arab East Jerusalem" -- a trophy name celebrating the ethnic cleansing of Jews from the city.  

Reuters responds to our criticism by repeating the phrase in another story about Israel considering a plan to build homes in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Gilo.  But note the artful adaptation:
Meir Margalit told Reuters the Jerusalem city planning commission was set to consider on January 24 the building plans for Gilo, an urban settlement built on land Israel captured in a 1967 war and annexed to Jerusalem.
"It is another nail in the peace process's coffin," Margalit, a member of the left-wing opposition party Meretz, said about the project, which seemed certain to draw Palestinian and international condemnation.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last week denounced the demolition of a derelict hotel in mostly Arab East Jerusalem to make way for 20 homes for Jews in a settlement project. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded publicly by saying Jews had a right to live anywhere in Jerusalem.
Reuters converts the word Arab from part of a proper noun ("Arab East Jerusalem") to an adjective by inserting the adverb "mostly"!  The agency is now ostensibly describing the city in demographic terms rather than with racist rhetoric.

Still, we'll take the points.

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