As I have written before, of course there is poverty in parts of Gaza. There is poverty in parts of Israel too. But when was the last time a foreign journalist based in Israel left the pampered lounge bars and restaurants of the King David and American Colony hotels in Jerusalem and went to check out the slum-like areas of southern Tel Aviv? Or the hard-hit Negev towns of Netivot or Rahat?Think of all the money that has been sent in aid to Gaza. The Obama administration just decided to send them $400 million in aid. Why are they more deserving than refugees in African countries like Sudan and the Congo of such munificence in aid?
Playing the manipulative game of the BBC is easy. If we had their vast taxpayer-funded resources, we too could produce reports about parts of London, Manchester and Glasgow and make it look as though there is a humanitarian catastrophe throughout the U.K. We could produce the same effect by selectively filming seedy parts of Paris and Rome and New York and Los Angeles too.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Whenever we see reporting on Gaza on the news, it looks like a disaster zone. Humanitarians claim that they need to ship basic food and health care supplies into the area. Photojournalist Tom Gross has posted pictures on his website and someone else has created a video of the opening of a brand new shopping mall. He also has pictures of abundant food being sold in a local market. Clearly, the media is giving us a skewed picture of the situation in Gaza. Check out his pictures and the video and I bet you'll be surprised at these images of life in Gaza which clearly are at odds with the pictures we usually see on the nightly news. As Gross writes,