Monday, January 28, 2008

MSM talks about "settlements" in the Negev

The CAMERA blog mentions that the BBC used the word "settlements" to describe Israeli towns in the Negev:
Israel began tightening its blockade of the Gaza Strip after an increase in rocket attacks by militants targeting its settlements near the border.

As CAMERA notes:

Israel withdrew its military and civilian settlements from the Gaza Strip in 2005. Sderot--the prime target of Palestinian rocket and mortar fire--is a city in the western Negev, well within Israel's pre-1967 borders. Yet it is still a "settlement" to BBC journalists who consistently label Israeli settlements "illegal under international law". Does this mean that BBC now considers all of Israel to be "illegal under international law"?
Alas, the BBC is not the only one to do this. Check out this passage from an op-ed in the Telegraph (UK):
This massive demonstration of people power continued again all day yesterday, as thousands more made their way across the border to buy much-needed goods and supplies. These have been in short supply in recent weeks after the Israeli military intensified its stranglehold on the enclave, following a series of rocket attacks on nearby Israeli settlements.
And AP, quoted in the Jerusalem Post:
Israel sealed off Gaza last weak, halting fuel shipments and shutting down its only power plant, which provides electricity to about one-third of Gaza's 1.5 million residents after militants launched rocket attacks on Israeli settlements.
No doubt these media outlets would argue that they are using the word "settlement" in its more general sense, but (for better or for worse) that word is now a keyword referring to Jewish towns and villages that happen to be built on disputed land, and the word is almost always used in a pejorative manner by these same media.

A quick search reveals that not once has the MSM referred to any "Arab settlements" in the past month, so it is hard to believe that the use of the word is an accident or innocuous.