The New York Times reports this week on the depth of anti-Jewish hatred within Hamas was well documented and important for the world to see, but it gave something of a free pass to Mahmoud Abbas, Fatah and the Palestinian Authority.
The article, by Steven Erlanger, focused on Hamas and its various propaganda efforts of incitement against Israel and Jews, from sermons in the mosque to television programming for children praising “martyrdom.” It noted that “the Palestinian Authority, under Fatah, has made significant, if imperfect efforts to end incitement.”
One of Erlanger’s sources, quoted in the story, was Itamar Marcus of Palestinian Media Watch, an Israeli group that monitors Palestinian media.
But Marcus told The Jewish Week on Thursday (April 3) that while there has been “a significant drop in the calls to violence, specifically from sermons,” the broadcasts from television operated by the Palestinian Authority continue to praise and promote terror acts against Israel.
“Violent clips that glorify violence continue,” he wrote in an e-mail. “In addition, the greatest promotion of violence of all is the turning of murderers and terrorists into heroes, and that continues.”
Marcus noted that the East Jerusalem man who shot down and murdered eight yeshiva students in Jerusalem last month was “glorified in the official, Abbas-controlled media,” as have been other killers of Israeli citizens. A television special honored the 17-year-old girl who became a suicide terrorist four years ago, “repeatedly calling her a hero, and her act heroic, and a source of pride for Palestinians.”
Marcus added that “there has been an increase in hate TV, including lies and libels, for example, about Israel intentionally spreading AIDS and drugs.” And all of Israel is regularly referred to as Palestine in the media, with Israeli cities like Haifa, Jaffa and Acre described as Palestinian cities or occupied Palestinian cities. “It is unfortunate that people who only look at the sermons created this false impression,” Marcus wrote.
Seems to me all of the above qualifies as less than “significant” and more than “imperfect” on the scale of Palestinian Authority efforts to tamp down anti-Israel propaganda.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of JTA or its parent company, 70 Faces Media.