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Monday, September 24, 2012

Reuters helpfully explains Ahmadinejad

Sometimes, media bias is very subtle.

Here's some from Reuters:
Ahmadinejad alluded to his previous rejection of Israel's right to exist. "Iran has been around for the last seven, 10 thousand years. They (the Israelis) have been occupying those territories for the last 60 to 70 years, with the support and force of the Westerners. They have no roots there in history," he said, speaking to reporters through an interpreter.

The modern state of Israel was founded in 1948.
That last sentence is a beaut, isn't it? 100% accurate and 100% deceptive - just what we would expect from Reuters.

That explanatory sentence helps Reuters inform its readers that Ahmadinejad's rants are correct.

Now, Reuters could have written "The modern state of Israel was founded in 1948, the climax of Jewish national aspirations since the Romans destroyed ancient Judah." Or "The modern state of Israel was founded in 1948 as the national home for the Jewish people who lived there continuously since Biblical times." Or that "The first empire in what is now Iran, Media, was established less than 3000 years ago, centuries after the reign of King David in Israel."

All of those would also have been good background sentences that could have illuminated how Ahmadinejad is completely wrong. But instead of performing a simple fact check for its readers, Reuters chose to find a single fact to seemingly support the crazed leader's words.

And that is a textbook example of subtle but unmistakable media bias.

(h/t Cesar)