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Firas Al-Atraqchi : CNN's Black Shroud

CNN's Black Shroud


By Firas Al-Atraqchi *

A black shroud hangs over CNN head offices in Atlanta, Georgia. A shroud of mourning as CNN goes full throttle with its "To Hell With Objectivity" campaign.

It's a patriotic type of journalism they practice there.

In the wake of Wednesday's suicide bombing of an immigrant district in Tel Aviv, Israeli spokesperson Ranaan Gissin tells us that Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has maintained a cool head when dealing with the Palestinians. Gissin tells us that Sharon has been able to retaliate in a level-headed manner. Someone break out the confetti; we're going to celebrate Sharon's Humanitarian of the Year award.

CNN's Judy Woodruff then calls the latest suicide bombing a tragedy. True, it is a tragedy. However, what of the nearly daily killing of Palestinians? Are they not tragic? What of the women who lose babies during childbirth as they are held up at Israeli military checkpoints with no access to medical attention? Is that not tragic?

Gissin reminds viewers that 570 Israelis have been killed; roughly 36,000 in U.S. terms, he claims. What he doesn't tell us is that the nearly 1800 Palestinian deaths (at the hands of Israeli soldiers, tanks, helicopter gunships and F-16s) are tantamount to 178,000 deaths in U.S. terms.

CNN's Jerrold Kessel seems exasperated when he wonders aloud what else can be done to stop suicide bombings. Someone pass this idiot a note; "Pull out of the illegally occupied lands and declare a Palestinian state".

Jeff Greenfield says he does not understand what else can be done or how to maintain rationale at moments like this.

Journalists speechless?

Woodruff reminds us that conversations concerning the Middle East (and the non-sequitur Palestinian state) to be held today in the White house must be "conscious of the horrific deaths in Israel over the last two days". Seems two days of Israeli deaths far outweigh 35 years of brutal, Nazi occupation of the Palestinians.

Woodruff laments that there had been a period of quiet in recent weeks. In that so-called period of quiet, 17 Palestinians, mostly children, have been killed.

In a period of 45 minutes, Woodruff manages to interview two Israeli spokespersons, an Israeli policeman, a CNN 'analyst', and a CNN senior White House correspondent. No Palestinians. No Arabs. Nothing. This is CNN's version of balanced coverage.

They just don't get it. Western media, that is. They cannot understand that the Palestinians have been fooled, lied to and cheated out of their legitimate inalienable rights to a homeland and nationhood. Palestinians put their faith in objective mediation by the U.S. and the U.N. Nothing, however, has stopped the Sharon tank.

And nothing, unfortunately, will stop CNN bias.

* - Firas Al-Atraqchi, MA, is a Canadian journalist living on the Pacific coast


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