Friday 1 July 2011


A local newspaper reporter had a criminal friend who was planning a bank robbery.
The reporter asked his pal to join the criminals gang on the bank heist and the robber agreed.
They drove together, the reporter, his friend, and the gang, to the scene of the crime. The reporter joined the gang as they burst into the bank, frightened the customers, and demanded the money from the bank staff.
Before they could make off with their loot the police arrived in numbers. There was a scuffle. Some of the gang violently resisted arrest and people were hurt.
All were arrested, including the newspaper reporter.
"But I'm a journalist!", he protested. "I have immunity under freedom of the press!"
"Screw you," said the cop. "You've been nicked."

The Gaza flotilla sets out on its Mediterranean cruise knowing that their act is illegal. The Israeli blockade on Gaza is legal. International law clearly says so. The maritime radicals willingly set out to break that law, and the media have asked to join them. The media are, therefore, embedded with those embarking on an illegal act and in the full knowledge that they are breaking the law. As in the parable, the journalists did not ask to join the police. Instead, they rushed to join the radicals. Like the local reporter,they are, in effect, aiding and abetting in a crime.  Like the local reporter, they should be arrested and punished.
If they get away this time we may find them embedded with terrorists next time. After all, they often broadcast the motivation of these killers rather than cover the personal tragedy that they cause.
The press, it seems, has no interest in presenting a full and fair picture. It simply takes one side of a story and projects it from the perspective of the author. This is bias reporting. When their reports do not accurately and fully reflect the position of the legitimate party to a conflict their work is tainted with dishonesty.
Freedom of the press is no excuse to avoid justice.

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