Once more in the name of spin

Once more, the AP spins anti-Israel. Note the title of the article that will be picked up by hundreds of media outlets worldwide:

Palestinian Killed in Israeli Airstrike

They’re not even using the weasel-word “militant,” even though it appears in the lead.

DEIR EL-BALAH, Gaza Strip (AP) – Israeli aircraft fired missiles at two cars in Gaza packed with rockets on Thursday, killing one Islamic Jihad militant and critically wounding another, the Israeli army and Palestinian officials said.

The militants were on their way to fire a barrage of homemade rockets at Israeli targets, the military said. The militants belonged to a cell that was especially active in firing rockets, it added. One of the two cars targeted was hit, the army said.

Pillars of black and white smoke billowed from the destroyed vehicle as rescue workers removed burned and dismembered bodies from the car.

Check out the photo that goes with the article. Here’s the caption:

A vehicle allegedly used by Palestinian militants burns after it was hit in an Israeli missile strike, in Deir El Balah, south of Gaza City, Thursday, April 27, 2006. Israeli aircraft fired three missiles at targets in the central Gaza Strip on Thursday, critically wounding two Palestinian militants, Palestinian health officials said.

What’s with the sudden need for “allegedly”? Oh, that’s right — let’s cast doubt that the Israelis hit the right target, even though the story contends that rescuers pulled body parts from the burning vehicle.

This next paragraph is confusing.

Israel has pledged to end the rocket fire from Gaza into Israel, but is reluctant to launch an invasion into the coastal area it withdrew from in August. The homemade rockets are highly inaccurate, but at times have killed people and damaged buildings.

The “inaccurate” rockets have killed people. Israel is “reluctant to launch an invasion.” You’d almost think the AP was reaching for balance there, if you hadn’t been a regular reader of theirs for years.

The new Hamas-led government has said it will not arrest the militants launching the rockets or take other steps to halt the fire.

Well, that’s completely accurate and amazing unbiased. But this next has to be a mistranslation.

Islamic Jihad vowed to take revenge for Thursday’s missile strike.

“God willing our reprisal is coming and it is going to be like air shaking,” said spokesman Abu Ahmad. “We are going to shake the air under their feet. They had experienced us in Tel Aviv and more is coming.”

“Air” shaking? I think they mean “earth.” Because if they don’t, they’re even dumber than I thought. (And we are so disappointed not to have a “gates of hell” quote.)

Now let’s look at the difference between the next two paragraphs. Read them carefully. See the subtle, subtle bias.

Islamic Jihad, a small group with ties to Iran and Syria, claimed responsibility for last week’s suicide bombing in Tel Aviv that killed nine and wounded dozens.

During more than five years of fighting, Israel has killed dozens of militants in targeted airstrikes. The attacks also have killed or wounded dozens of civilians.

Notice how the victims of suicide bombings are numbers only, but the AP felt it necessary to add that civilians ahve been killed in airstrikes. A truly unbiased report would say something like, “Militant suicide attacks have killed or wounded hundreds of civilians.” Thousands, actually.

But we don’t expect balance from an AP article. Good thing, too.

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6 Responses to Once more in the name of spin

  1. Another square marked off. Yay!

  2. Ben says:

    You might wanna note that the time periods compared in the last quote are different also. 5 years of Israeli vs terrorists once,a week ago? Thats like saying Democrats pushed through a vote to approve this one pork budget item while mentioning Republicans have passed billions of dollars of pork in the past 5 years. Pay no attention to the different record lengths, not important…

  3. The photo looks like the man in the foreground is saying “YES“.

  4. RightWingDuck says:

    Those evil Israelis!

    It’s getting to the point where those sweet, innocent Rocket Trucker Union Workers won’t be able to catch a break.

    It’s all the fault of the joooooos!

  5. Andy says:

    Pillars of black and white smoke billowed from the destroyed vehicle as rescue workers removed burned and dismembered bodies from the car.

    This is very evocative imagery. Bodies! Lots of them, right? But wait! how disappointing:

    killing one Islamic Jihad militant and critically wounding another

    I’d have been happy if bodies was lots of erstwhile militants; but if only one was killed, and another injured, I think calling them “burned and dismembered bodies” is a little overkill.

  6. Alex Bensky says:

    As an attorney, I find it important to use precise and accurate language. I’m all for saying that the car was allegedly used to launch rockets at civilians in Israel. It’s just careful word usage. Why are you so upset about it?

    In other news, the sun allegedly rises in the east, and experts allege that water is wet.

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