A tale of two borders

You know what’s really hot on the AP newswire this morning? Israel firing back at Syria after taking fire for the last few days. Let’s take a look at how this is being reported.

Israel fires at Syria for 2nd straight day
The Israeli military says it scored “direct hits” on targets in Syria after responding to stray mortar fire from its northern neighbor.

The military says that Israeli tanks opened fire on targets in Syria on Monday after the mortar round landed in an open area in the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights.

Israeli military officials say “Syrian mobile artillery” was hit. The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity under military guidelines, gave no further details.

Note the emphasis in the headline: Israel has fired on Syria for two straight days. Note also that there is no corresponding mention of how many days in a row Syria has fired mortars into Israeli territory, nor that tanks violated the DMZ last week.
There is only a report of what Israel has done in response to “stray mortar fire”–once again, the narrative is the evil, militaristic Israel responding brutally to what amounts to sort of an “accidental” mortar fire into its territory. Israel is portrayed as over-responding to something that simply can’t be helped in a war. You know, stuff goes over the border, just deal with it, yawn, yawn, yawn.

Now let’s look at Syria’s other border war.

Syrian jet bombs near Turkish border, 6 dead
A Syrian fighter jet bombed a rebel-held area near the Turkish border on Monday, killing at least six people and wounding a dozen others, an official said. One rocket-propelled grenade landed in Turkey,

An Associated Press journalist saw the plane bomb an area around the Syrian border town of Ras al-Ayn three times. A Turkish official said one bomb hit a suspected Syrian rebel target about 50 or 60 meters (yards) away from the border with Turkey. Last week Syrian rebels overran three security compounds there and wrestled control of the town, located in Syria’s predominantly Kurdish, oil-producing northeastern province of al-Hasaka.

From the emphasis in the headline to the lack of the word “stray” in front of “rocket-propelled grenade”, we can see the AP bias just leaping out in the article about Israel. Here’s the full description of the RPG landing in Turkey. Again, the word “stray” is nowhere in evidence.

Earlier Monday, a rocket-propelled grenade round landed on an empty field near Ceylanpinar. No one was injured, the official said. Turkey has been responding with fire to shells and mortars fired from Syria that land on its territory, but there was no immediate Turkish retaliation, according to the official.

You see that the AP states as a matter of course that Turkey has been responding to Syrian fire across its borders, but there’s not much more than that. Let’s go back to the Israel story and look at the difference in reporting about the promised response.

The mortars are believed to be coming from fighting in Syria’s civil war, and Israel says the shells do not appear to be aimed at Israeli targets. Nonetheless, Israel has promised a tough response if the fire continues.

Note the difference in phrases between the two stories. The adjectives used for Israel imply a far more angry and militaristic response, even though Turkey has actually bombed Syrian positions on the Syrian side of the border. But hey, it’s just another day for our biased world media, who never hesitate to slam Israel while whitewashing Israel’s enemies–all of the time. Anti-Israel media bias? Yeah, we got that.

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