Wednesday, April 27, 2011

When it comes to the Arabs, Reuters cannot muster the "O" word

When writing about the Middle East conflict, Reuters correspondents relish use of the word "occupation" to describe the control of Judea and Samaria (the "West Bank") by Israeli forces after the 1967 Six-Day War.  Although this territory is claimed by both Israel and the Palestinian Arabs and remains officially unallocated, Reuters liberally uses the term "occupied" as a form of innuendo to suggest that Israel is usurping Arab land.

On the other hand, when an Arab state has been occupying another sovereign's territory, sometimes for decades, Reuters is careful not to use the "o" word:
Tiny Lebanon, with around four million people, has always been a battleground for bigger regional powers. Syria, which had a military presence for 29 years until 2005, remains the most influential external player in Lebanon's sectarian politics.
It's just a "presence" you see; no trespass, foreign control, or violations of international law involved.

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