Tuesday, 10 June 2008

The Brotocols of the Elders of the National

Someone commented this on an earlier thread - here - and it seemed interesting enough for a new topic:

The National also has some kind of pro-Israel agenda. Anyone who has an eye for such editorial policies will notice it.

Starting with labeling "Jerusalem, Israel" on a map (which even Fox News wouldn't do) to calling the boundry between the Israeli occupied Golan and Syria proper the "Israeli-Syrian border".

Aside from that, referring to Jewish colonists in the Golan as "Jewish residents of the Golan" is a really good job at explaining the reality of the occupation to the reader.

The National's pro-Israel editorial policy is being watched closely. Not just by me and others but also by people high up in the government.

Nice to know that the government of Abu Dhabi has come out with an official paper that has Zionist leanings. That' what happens when you bring in an EIC (Newland) that is openly sympathetic to Israel. Read his op-ed in Canada's Macleans magazine. Looks like Abu Dhabi is a asleep.


Thoughts?

Edit: A reader has added this comment, which is also worth discussing.

There seems to be a perception that The National is really hitting Dubai while giving Abu Dhabi more positive coverage. I work at the paper and I have been hearing this from journos and from business /government officials in Dubai. A few days ago I was politely told to piss off because of the paper's position on Dubai.

Other than the paper's obvious pro-Israel stance, is there also an anti-Dubai bias?

46 comments:

Anonymous said...

Don't make me laugh.

I thought their ten-day series commemorating the Nakba really showed their secret Zionist allegiances. Nothing says "pro-Israel" agenda like five pages a day on the plight of Palestinian refugees.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget that bizarre editorial about the Jews of Arabia a week ago.

Anonymous said...

Get over it! Move on...

Anonymous said...

unbelievably lame post. Yes, a quality newspaper should call Israeli's living in the Golan "colonists"

This reminds me of a press conference I was at a few weeks ago. An academic from Europe was launching a report that studied a bunch of Middle East countries.

When the slide came up showing the relative rankings of each country on some index, Israel was part of the list.

While this guy is talking - he's quite a senior, very well respected guy in his field - someone in the crowd (an anchor for CNBC) yells out "excuse me! israel is not part of the middle east"

the guy stops for a second and tries to work out how to handle it diplomatically, says something about how it is based on world bank data and definitions, and the bloke in the crowd, ever so smugly, says "yes, but israel is not in the middle east"....

the speaker didnt want to cause a scene and just brushed it of with a "thank you, we will take that feeback into consideration." embarassing for the rest of us in the room though.

Anonymous said...

Do you mean the "bizarre editorial" that was actually a regular column written by an Emirati?

Anonymous said...

Actually, I don't think it is something we should "get over" and the smug anchor from CNBC isn't totally out of order. Yes, it's from a world bank data but the academic should have considered the sensitivities of the region.

Anyone that flicks TV channels will come across the Arab/Israeli conflict, so he should have known better. As a state that does not officially recognise Israel, I think the UAE authorities should pay more attention to these fallacies, especially considering the number of Palestinian refugees (1st, 2nd and 3rd generation) living in the Emirates.

Just as we would not expect to see t&a in men's mags, we should not expect to see Palestine being renamed Israel in local rags. Afterall, isn't preserving culture top of the UAE's agenda?

Anonymous said...

The Daily Telegraph - of which Newland was editor - is famously pro-Israel. On the grounds that is "the only democracy in the Middle East."

He does seem a bizarre choice to be editor of a newspaper in the Middle East.

That said, Israelis are openly coming to Dubai now to trade diamonds - and all of the time Avram Grant was in charge of Chelsea, Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways were sponsoring a team managed by a Jew.

Perhaps it isn't a big issue here anymore?

Anonymous said...

I'm not so sure that it's not a bigg issue any longer but I do think it's a case of money over morals.

Anonymous said...

and Emirates were sponsoring Arsenal at the same time as the Israeli Tourist Board, if i recall

gregg said...

The National treats the Israeli/Palestinian issue with maturity, a novel approach (Al Jazeera aside) for media outlets in the region.
At the same time, the Golan Heights are occupied - and if you travel to the West Bank, most of the accents you hear are American/South African/English - these people have about as much right to live on the West Bank as I do.

Anonymous said...

Not sure if EVERYONE 'who has an eye for such editorial policies' would come to the conclusion that the National is pro-Israel from the examples given in this post.

But I am pretty sure that whoever wrote it has a petty gripe against the paper... Perhaps they weren't up to scratch to get a job there...?

Such comments are hardly going to help bring better journalism to this country, something that the National has succeeded in doing where most others have failed.

Or, perhaps we should just ignore Israel together. It just doesn't exist, right? And perhaps we should start called suicide bombings 'martyrdom operations' again, yeah?

Lame post indeed.

Anonymous said...

Is Martin Newlands of Jewish extraction. Or any his senior staff.

Was Conrad Black his last boss at the Daily Telegraph Jewish. His wife certainly was.

So many unanswered questions.

Anonymous said...

To say that the National has brought 'better' journalism to the UAE is a laugh. What hard hitting investigative pieces or thoughtful analyses have filled its pages and informed the public? Its a step above a toady - Emirati identity piece aside. And its boring.

The writing is clear, concise and professional but the content is neither innovative or impressive. It does not raise the bar of journalism in the Gulf and it does not convey the truth of life in the UAE.

Anonymous said...

Questions nobody cares about.

Anonymous said...

Anon@13.28
One unanswered question is why is the Arab world such a mess? Possibly due the massive ineptitude of the Arabs themselves. Of course blaming Israel/the JEWS (insert danger music here) is a far easier option, and coincidentally, the Arab world has been run on taking the easy option for nearly a century now.
Obviously I could be wrong and Conrad Black's wife controls the world.

Anonymous said...

"Is Martin Newlands of Jewish extraction." No, he is a Catholic, you stupid twat.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2007/jul/01/comment.religion

But I do know for a fact that the rest of his staff are hook-nosed money-lending Jews -- and all the manakish in the office is made from the blood of Arab children.

Anonymous said...

I thought this blog had hit rock bottom months ago, but a few morons seem to have managed to lower the tone even further by denouncing each other as Jews. Sad doesn't even begin to cover it.

Anonymous said...

I challenge anyone who works at the National to name just one article or an investigative piece or even an op-ed piece written by their own staff that can be considered worthy of a quality newspaper. Instead of coming here and defending a joke, the reporters and editors should get out of their cushy offices and do some work.

Samer Marzouq said...

The war of the Anonymousees

I don't live in the UAE so I didn't catch their Nakba coverage, but let's not forget that AlJazeera is playing the role of the patriot media and yet they refer to it as Israel and they do write it on the map.

My friend sooner or later all Arab countries will acknowledge Israel and exchange diplomatic relationships including Saudi Arabia.

Plus the god damm Palestinian officials and authorities acknowledged Israel long time ago.

To me it will remain Palestine for ever from the Mediterranean Sea to Jordan River, and I'm really glad you brought this issue up, cheers dude!

Anonymous said...

The National is actually providing balanced, intelligent coverage of the Israel-Palestine conflict and it has clearly come as a shock to the systems of people who are used to the crap that Gulf News has churned out for eons.

Anonymous said...

Interesting what they say about the National. Heck knows how true this is. One thing for sure is that the Gulf News, among Indo-Pak people, is widely known as the Hindu News due to the saturation of Hindutva, BJP and RSS activists in its rank and the disdain it treats India's minorities. BTW I'm Indian.

Anonymous said...

Jews are not Zionists, some Muslims are worst than the nastiest Zionists toward Palestinians plight under the longest occupation in history. Douchebags defending twisting words should be delighted that even CNN interrupts its news coverage, when its anchor Tom Clancy has said the "Golan occupied by Israel" the sudden commercial brought back his correction " seized by Israel". Suicide bombers are desperate criminals, but we should not turn a blind eye when Israeli settlers are breaking bones of Palestinian children under the pretext of fighting terrorism and their security. The western media has been intimidated by the anti-Semitism scare tactic for too long, the timid English middle eastern media is no exception. When the UN state that Jerusalem is an occupied territories all media outlets bends over to Israeli pressure and twist this simple fact. The Zionists are the most organized minority that can take on the most numerous community including the Arab world.

Anonymous said...

Off topic but in the uk we're getting reports that the UAE has now been placed, by the foreign office, on high-alert for terrorist attacks on western nationals - any news of it over there? It was lead item on the bbc news but has drifted away a little - link is here -
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7456547.stm

Anonymous said...

Israel certainly sees itself as "Western" and definitely not 'Middle Eastern". Not surprising given the fact that the Middle East has tried to wipe them out on a number of occasions. Also they don't really look towards Europe much either - given the fact a lot of Europe joined in the Nazi holocaust. Hence their attachment to the USA.
It should also be pointed out in terms of international law Israel stops at its 1967 borders. Jerusalem was not a full integrated part of Israel and neither were Golan heights or the illegal settlements etc. Calling them otherwise is certainly a very loaded thing to do and an editor of Newland's experience would be very aware of that.
I don't want to get into the rights or wrongs of Israel but Newland's actions are certainly provocative - question is why and for what purpose? Is this him trying to push the boundaries a little? Seems like a strange way to do it and hardly a clarion call to press freedom and journalistic virtues.

Anonymous said...

Regardless of the original poster's bias or not, the fact is he/she did point out two glaring errors.

1, Jeruslaem as a whole is not recognised by the UN as belonging to Israel

2, The Golan Heights are also officially occupied, so it is not the official border between Israel and Syria.

Whether it is or not, these kind of mistakes make the paper look biased or badly researched.

Anonymous said...

Come on DMO, there are more serious issues than the National.
The PR machine keep the evil empire going: Douche bag hacks are publishing press releases as they are with very serious implications: a spyware made to look as legitimate monitoring tool. See who is recycling crap:

http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en&sa=X&oi=spell&resnum=0&ct=result&cd=1&q=MidEast+bosses+fight+back+against+staff+internet+abuse&spell=1

or search google for :
MidEast bosses fight back against staff internet abuse
See the software dubbed as divorceware’
Netbus was then reincarnated as SpectorSoft, ... often referred to as ‘divorceware’” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SpectorSoft

Anonymous said...

Our Western guests don't seem to be very concerned about this rather dangerous threat to our peace and stability called Israel.

Should push come to shove, after all, they will always safely jet back to their kingdom, leaving us to deal with the monster their government has created.

Anonymous said...

UAE Terror alert is ‘long overdue’ says expert
(16 June 2008)

A Middle East expert and author of new book on Dubai warns that the new terror alert in the United Arab Emirates is likely to lead to a significant downturn in Dubai’s “fragile” tourist and real estate industries.

The Foreign Office has just told British nationals in the United Arab Emirates that there is now a high risk of a terror attack there.

Dr Christopher Davidson, Lecturer in Middle East Politics, Durham University, outlines the terror threat in the final chapter of his new book, called “Dubai: The Vulnerability of Success.” Dubai is one of seven states in the UAE.

Dr Davidson said: “In many ways this terror alert is long overdue, as since summer 2005 there have been a series of significant threats made to the UAE government, most of which have focused on the UAE’s close relationship with the West, in particular its discreet provision of seaport and airport facilities for the US-led coalition’s War on Terror.

“The UAE’s second largest emirate – Dubai - has long been a favoured holiday destination for British and other European nationals, and since the year 2000 it has emerged as an attractive opportunity for overseas property investors.

“These new warnings are likely to lead to a significant downturn in Dubai’s fragile tourist and real estate industries, which it has been building up since its oil reserves began to decline in the mid 1990s.

“In particular, Dubai’s many luxury hotels, most of which are packed with non-Muslim and non-Arab foreigners, provide Al-Qaeda and other groups with very soft targets.”

Further information from the BBC report: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7456547.stm

Anonymous said...

off topic again but this sordid little tale of an UAE sheikh and a bar fight in Switzerland is a hoot.

ttp://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7457573.stm

Anonymous said...

A hoot? Reads like a fairly dry update on a story that's been around for a long time.

Anonymous said...

A hoot meaning an amusing tale - and apologies if i don't stay up to date with the lives of UAE's minor sheikhs - guess I must have better things to do.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps you were amused by the suggestion of gayness in the article.

Anonymous said...

There seems to be a perception that The National is really hitting Dubai while giving Abu Dhabi more positive coverage.

I work at the paper and I have been hearing this from journos and from business /government officials in Dubai. A few days ago I was politely told to piss off because of the paper's position on Dubai.

Other than the paper's obvious pro-Israel stance, is there also an anti-Dubai bias?

Anonymous said...

Isn't that the most amusing part, though? That and the belt-whipping part, and the fact that a Gulf sheikh was doing it. What's not funny is the hush money offered at the end, which is understandable. Cause, you know, in the Middle East those people can get stoned to death.

Anonymous said...

The National knocks Dubai a little bit but what is more obvious is the over the top ass kissing of all things Abu Dhabi.

I swear if Abu Dhabi announced a new project to add a traffic light on one of the city streets it would be on the front page of the National being praised to high heavens.

Anonymous said...

No-one mentioned The National's pro-plagarism stance? It came to a head when someone lifted a Gulf News story, changed a few words here and there and slapped it onto the National's website, including the GN reporter's byline.

Anonymous said...

In the words of Catherine Tate's 'grandma' - 'what a load of old shit'

Anonymous said...

There were very serious repercussions after that website screw-up, although ultimately nobody was sacked. Some reshuffling, though.

Anonymous said...

To the third poster: What do you call it when a state demolishes the infrastructure and homes of the native population, pushes them out to settle a different group of people of a certain ethnicity and religion? Ethnic cleansing and colonisation. It's not an emotive, sensationalist term. It's a fact. The fact that you'd refuse to see it that way is very telling of your own biases and that of your paper.

Mind you, the National's "nakba package" was called Israel60Palestine. It gave both sides of the story, which there is nothing wrong with, except that its coverage of the Middle East is with a heavily pro-Israel bias.

Anonymous said...

Really? I'm surprised no one was put on a plane back to Fleet Street. Is this what the National has brought the creme de la creme of journalism here for?

Anonymous said...

"What do you call it when a state demolishes the infrastructure and homes of the native population, pushes them out to settle a different group of people of a certain ethnicity and religion?"

America
The British Empire
Australia
South Africa
Canada
New Zealand
Spanish "discovery"
China
Germany
Modern Africa
etc.

Anonymous said...

You forgot Iraq, Turkey, Morocco, Ethiopia, Indonesia and the Ottoman Empire. Oh, El Cid and Saladin too.

Anonymous said...

http://thenational.ae/article/20080708/ONLINESPECIAL/110926377/1119

Anonymous said...

Link doesnt work

Outraged said...

In case we needed further evidence of this paper's leanings, today's edition contains the headline:

"Dubai inferior to Abu Dhabi, says Jew."

Anonymous said...

Anyone heard the rumours that Campaign is coming back?