Talk:Media coverage of the Arab–Israeli conflict/Archive 2

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Archive 1 Archive 2 Archive 3

Incidents of controversial media reporting

This is a joke, right?! A cruel ironic joke? How come an article on biased media coverage lists controversial media incidents exclusively based on examples in favour of Palestinians? Numerous studies show that both in quality and quantity the anglo-american press is predominantly biased in favour of israel (the closer to New York, more bias). Some of these studies are even mentioned in this article as reference, why aren't examples from these studies extracted to the list of incidents? This is very disheartening. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:21, 13 March 2008 (UTC)

Are you trying to insinuate something by blaming New York, and refusing to capitalize "Israel"? AnonMoos (talk) 00:35, 14 March 2008 (UTC)
S/he didn't capitalise "Anglo" or "American" either, so I don't think you can read too much into that. Bad spelling isn't a conspiracy. :-) -- ChrisO (talk) 13:38, 26 March 2008 (UTC)
User, or other concerned editors -- please add sourced examples that you believe will improve the balance in the article. RomaC (talk) 05:29, 27 March 2008 (UTC)
Please add them to the far superior Media coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict/rewrite. <eleland/talkedits> 05:34, 27 March 2008 (UTC)
When is the rewrite going to replace this insult to Wikipedia? RomaC (talk) 14:34, 17 April 2008 (UTC)
Well, that depends on if it must absolutely be completed before it replaces the current version and also on how much help I get. Sorry, although I've been trying to get around to finishing the rewrite, my coursework has been keeping me fairly busy. And also, the weather has gotten very, very nice, so it would be a shame to spend all my free time in-doors editing Wikipedia. In all seriousness, though, I think we can complete the rewrite fairly quickly if a number of us just add a small part each day or every other day. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 21:37, 17 April 2008 (UTC)

How about put the rewrite up now as it is and put the unfinished bits here in the Talk page? RomaC (talk) 04:06, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

We can put the rewrite up now, but I see no reason why we should break it up and put any unfinished pieces here. IMHO, the {{expand}} tags are sufficient for showing that a section is under construction. Does anyone object to replacing the current version with the rewrite? ← Michael Safyan (talk) 21:38, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
Since there haven't been any objections, I have replaced the current page with the rewrite as-is. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 20:49, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
How come the re-write includes the Grossman picture? The only relation to any serious discussion of the topic concerns a highly unusual double retraction of a story that wrongfully maligned Israel. Anyone would think Israel was wrongly getting an easy ride.
How come the Gaza blast incident includes a quote from CAMERA, themselves one of the very most worrying parties in the whole business of media distortion? Anyone would think Israel was wrongly getting an easy ride.
How come the Independent's story on "Mystery of Israel's Secret Uranium Bomb" is treated as if it was a falsification, when there is no evidence for such? It's no more than an unverified allegation at this point. Worse, although the headline is eye-catching and (perhaps) wrongfully accusatory, the article itself is not, only questioning based on forensic testing at apparently reputable labs. (See my reasoning for saying this). Anyone would think Israel was wrongly getting an easy ride.
And how come Robert Fisk (author of the article) is selected as, presumably, an un-balanced writer, when the article itself is carefully and correctly worded? There may well be a fault, but it lies in the head-line.
Just from this one section, I think it's clear there remain really serious problems, with quite unsubstantiated claims made to defend the position that Israel is unfairly maligned. Whereas, in each of these three cases, the actual material might even suggest the opposite.
Answer to my question? "This was never a re-write in the first place, It's still laced with the exact same, really serious problems of the original article". PRtalk 11:16, 14 May 2008 (UTC)
In answer to your question...
  1. The Tuvia Grossman article is a "frequently cited incident" of controversial reporting by Israelis and Israel advocates who claim that the Western media favor Palestinians. It is so significant, in fact, that according to Honest Reporting's promotional videos, the Honest Reporting media watchdog group formed as a result of this particular incident.
  2. The quote from CAMERA is preceded by a clear indication that it is being quoted. The purpose is not to support or refute their claim, but merely to explain what claim they make.
  3. The Independent's story on "Mystery of Israel's Secret Uranium Bombs" was a falsification; their allegations that Israel had employed Uranium-based weaponry during the Second Lebanon War were refuted by the United Nations Environment Programme.
I think you are incorrect in stating that the rewrite is no different than the original. Whereas the original validated/refuted claims of bias, this new version explains what claims are made by each side, without endorsing or refuting such claims. That said, I concede that the "Frequently cited incidents" section, at this moment, contains incidents which are cited primarily by Israelis and their advocates. If you come across incidents which are frequently cited by Palestinians and their advocates, I will gladly include them in the article; at this time, though, I have been unable to find an incident meeting the following criteria:
  1. The reported information was refuted by one or more prominent governmental or non-governmental organizations, or
  2. The reported information was admitted to be false by the publisher, or
  3. The reported information was called into question by a high contracting party or by notable persons (e.g. a high-ranking government official of Israel or the Palestinian Authority)
  1. At least one pro-Israel/pro-Palestinian media watchdog group has referred to the incident on more than one occassion, or
  2. Several pro-Israel/pro-Palestinian media watchdog groups have referred to the incident.
If you are able to locate an incident of pro-Israel/anti-Palestinian or alleged pro-Israel/anti-Palestinian reporting which meets that criteria, please include it in the list. Thank you. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 19:31, 14 May 2008 (UTC)
I worry that you've made up these criteria, and that they're pandering to the blogosphere, of which "Honest Reporting" is definitely a part. CAMERA is supposed to be excluded as non-RS by RfC (long before it was caught trying to pack Wikipedia).
However, there may be advantages to your criteria (if the community accept that they are or should be policy). They'd mean that, for instance, the Jenin Massacre and the Gaza Beach massacre will be referenced, and both are (whatever you think of the "truth" of them) 100s of times better reported than Grossman.
Oh, and I need a reference that says the "Uranium Bomb" story was a falsification and not simply a story for which no evidence was found at a location that I estimate to be 20km away. The falsifications of Israel over its use of white phosphorus and other breaches of International agreement (central to the Independent story) must, again, be 100s of times more significant to this topic than is Fisk misquoted by the headline a sub-editor applied to one story. PRtalk 07:31, 15 May 2008 (UTC)
I worry that you've made up these criteria
Of course I made up the criteria, but not just now. Whenever there is a list, criteria must be established for including items in the list. Since I was the only one editing the article, for a while, I simply kept the criteria in my head. We can, of course, negotiate the criteria, so long as the criteria remain logical and we apply them consistently. That said, I think the criteria which I established are rather sensible, and so I am not rushing to change them unless a number of editors find them to be illogical or problematic... in which case, we can debate the issue.
and that they're pandering to the blogosphere
Accusations of biased reporting in the blogosphere which are notable (reported in the news, resulted in retractions, referenced* by notable persons, referenced* by notable governmental or non-governmental organizations, or ....) certainly merit mention. *NOTE: when I say "referenced", I do not mean "cited", but rather "referred to".
of which "Honest Reporting" is definitely a part
While Honest Reporting's actions and comments are felt within the blogosphere, HonestReporting has its own, organizationally run, website. Honest Reporting, as one of the two major pro-Israel media watchdogs (the other being CAMERA), merits mention in an article about the positions of pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian media watchdogs. Even if it were a blog, though, HonestReporting is quoted in order to explain its position, only; not to substantiate facts. Furthermore, all quotes are given explicitly (i.e. with "According to..."). Since the quotes are used to explain the organization's position and not to validate anything else, the quotes are consistent with Wikipedia's standards for quoting blogs.
the Jenin Massacre ... will be referenced
Good point. I had almost forgotten about that... Although I'm frankly surprised that you would mention it, since it is cited primarily by Israelis and Israel advocates, since early media reports largely repeated the claim that hundreds of Palestinians were massacred, a claim refuted by HRW, the UN, and Amnesty International.
I need a reference that says the "Uranium Bomb" story was a falsification
The reference is already in the article. See the publication by the UN News Centre, stating that no Uranium-based weaponry were used.
The falsifications of Israel over its use of white phosphorus
I'm afraid I've lost you. If I tell you five facts and one lie, do the five facts make the lie no longer a lie? The claim that Israel used Uranium-based weaponry was found to be false. End of story. Whether anything else Fisk said in his article was true is irrelevant, and really has no bearing on the fact that the article is frequently cited by Israelis and Israel advocates as an example of alleged bias.
I hope I have answered you to your satisfaction. Good evening. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 08:49, 15 May 2008 (UTC)
I'm still finding nothing stating that the reports on Israel using Uranium-based weapons were "found to be false". All I'm seeing is the UN saying Israel did not use depleted uranium during conflict with Hizbollah, UN agency finds, which does not match what's in the article, and is denying something quite different - the two named labs (and a military science professor) says that it was enriched Uranium that was found. And of course, we don't accept what is only in headlines anyway, as I'm sure you know).
I've asked this repeatedly, I'm not sure what the problem is but this is clearly a breach of BLP. We don't accuse living people of publishing falsifications, particularly not in their profession. (This is on top of a raft of other objections to this article, about which you admit to be operating an undocumented policy of your own). PRtalk 11:21, 13 June 2008 (UTC)
If you don't mind, I'm going to start a new section for this. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 17:40, 13 June 2008 (UTC)
I found the following informative:

The Israeli-Hezbollah War of 2006: The Media as a Weapon in Asymmetrical Conflict Marvin Kalb ..... "The paper also shows how an open society, Israel, is victimized by its own openness and how a closed sect, Hezbollah, can retain almost total control of the daily message of journalism and propaganda." ........2 examples "The cameramen didn’t need Hezbollah’s permission to film the devastation, but if in the wreckage they saw young men with guns, they were warned not to take pictures of these Hezbollah fighters, else their cameras would be confiscated and they might run into trouble returning to Beirut" ........... "Anthony Shadid, an Arabic-speaking reporter for The Washington Post, drove one day to the Litani River, where he came upon the unusual scene of a score of men pushing and pulling two trucks laden with supplies.38 “Don’t take pictures,” one of the men shouted."$File/rwp_07_012_kalb.pdf Tundrabuggy (talk) 23:04, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

I couldn't find anything on how it(media reporting) has evolved over time

Some snippets from Time Magazine to use as food for thought:

At London, in an address before a session of the World Zionist Organization, Sir Herbert Samuel, High Commissioner of Palestine, waxed enthusiastic over the upbuilding of the Jewish National Home and the general progress of Palestine. Said he:

"The industrial exposition in Tel-Aviv revealed the development of Palestinian industry, and was a convincing indication that Palestine may become the industrial centre of the Middle East within our generation."

Profoundly disapproving of the Zionist policy of discrimination against Arab labor, he concluded that Jewish nationalism encouraged Arab nationalism, while the depressing of Arab wages made conflict inevitable. Jews who had been persecuted in Germany now persecuted Arabs and preached a doctrine of racial purity as relentless as the one under which they had suffered. A little dizzy from following this vicious circle all the way around, Gessner came reluctantly to a doubtful conclusion: "If we can't get along with the Arabs, we have failed."

They talked confidently—indeed, stridently—of a state of ten million, not necessarily confined to the present boundaries of Israel. It was a bad joke, and also a sober observation, that the idea of Drang nach Osten lived in the new nation of Hitler's victims. As they looked around them at a disorganized and unproductive Arab world, Israelis showed some of the reactions of the prewar Germans looking around a disorganized and unproductive Europe. The new blood of nationalism ran fast and hot in Israel; sometimes it seemed to be gushing out on the ground. Pleading for more understanding and tolerance of Israel, one sympathetic observer warned: "This could become an ugly little Spartan state."

--Stor stark7 Speak 15:10, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

The map at the top of the article


I was skimming past this article when I noticed that the picture used at the top has a powerful visual message: that Israel is overwhelmingly surrounded by the "Arab League", nations that at some stage been at war with Israel.

I don't doubt the reliability of the map, and I have a question:

a.) is the map relevant to a discussion on media bias?

Cheers, S.Wilson (talk) 05:16, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

Believe that map is not relevant at all to a discussion on media bias. RomaC (talk) 05:22, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
Agreed. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 05:32, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
So do you think some one should remove it?S.Wilson (talk) 00:51, 1 June 2008 (UTC)
No. If you disagree with the map, bring it up at {{Template:Infobox Arab-Israeli conflict}}. The map is a part of the infobox for the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the conflict is certainly pertinent to the article. Including the infobox indicates that this article is related to the Arab-Israeli conflict, and it allows users to quickly navigate to other articles about the Arab-Israeli conflict. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 02:16, 1 June 2008 (UTC)
Hi, S.Wilson. If you would like to debate the map, you should visit the talk page of Template:Infobox Arab-Israeli conflict. As for whether the map is related to media bias or perceptions of the conflict... without an article arguing that it is a form of bias, it would be impossible to write anything about it in Wikipedia. Personally, though, I have noticed that Israelis do view themselves as living in a tiny country surrounded by hostile Arab countries and surviving only miraculously, and view the conflict from the perspective of the larger map of the Middle East, whereas Palestinians view Israelis as the powerful and hostile ones, and view the conflict from the perspective of the much smaller map of Israel. If you can find an article on the subject suitable for citing in Wikipedia, then I would be interested in seeing the link. Have a good day. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 05:32, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

Given the substantial political, economic and military support Israel receives from the United States, perhaps the US should also be included in the map? Surely they are more involved in the conflict than, say, the Comoros Islands, who are currently shown on the map as a "belligerent." Strongly suggest this misrepresentitive David vs Goliath caricature be removed, especially as it does not at all reflect on or relate to the subject of the article, which is media coverage. cheers RomaC (talk) 12:36, 1 June 2008 (UTC)

Again, if you disagree with the map, bring it up on the talk page of the Arab-Israeli conflict infobox. To throw out the wikilinks to other pages related to the Arab-Israeli conflict over the map would be like throwing out the baby with the bath water. Please dispute the map on the infobox's talk page, not here. Thanks in advance for your understanding. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:41, 1 June 2008 (UTC)
No, as that forces a discussion of media coverage into another, broader and widely irrelevant context. The solution is that because some 90% of this article is about media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, to re-title it as such. "Media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict" was the original article title. There can be a subsection that looks at "Media coverage of other news events" to cover the few ancillary items. Also, this rewritten article's raison d'etre, an analytical approach that looked at one side then the other, is being challenged by the importing from the seriously slanted previous version of the article of sections such as "Frequently cited incidents" which lists six incidents, all of which tend to argue a Pro-Palestinian bias. RomaC (talk) 04:30, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
I have just removed the infobox, in response to your complaints -- although, quite frankly, I find your complaints completely unreasonable and unfounded. As for the "frequently cited incidents" section, please understand that the I have written the vast majority of these article and that, I admit, I am more familiar with claims of "pro-Palestinian" or "anti-Israel" bias than with claims of "pro-Israel" or "anti-Palestinian" bias. If you know of any incidents, which meet the inclusion criteria, and which are cited by Palestinians and their advocates, then feel free to include them. On more than one occasion, I have requested assistance in helping to expand and improve the quality of the article. Thus far, only Eleland -- much to his credit -- has helped. So, if you have material to contribute to the article, then please contribute it. Otherwise, I find it rather hard to sympathize with complaints that I have not spent enough hours searching for material to include in the article. Thanks for your understanding. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 10:53, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

Good lord, the map is back, and now it is displayed twice, prominently, at the top of the page. S.Wilson (talk) 06:53, 20 August 2008 (UTC)

Media Coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

This was the original title of the article. Propose it better reflects the content overall.RomaC (talk) 05:30, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

The majority of the article focuses on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but there are parts which fall outside the scope of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict but within the scope of the Arab-Israeli conflict. For example, press freedom in the Middle East, the 2006 Lebanon War photographs controversies, etc. I think we should leave the title as-is, in order to allow for more flexibility with the content. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 05:36, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
Strongly disagree. The bits that fall outside can be included in an "other" or "related" subsection. As it is the new title is being used to rationalize the David vs Goliath map in the infobox. RomaC (talk) 04:32, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
Strongly disagree with your disagreement. Including aspects that fall into the wider Arab-Israeli conflict but not within the confines of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict into an "other" or "related" subsection would be illogical and would obstruct the flow of the article. Should the "other" subsection, also contain a "common claims" subsection, specific to the Arab-Israeli conflict? Should this "other" section also have its own "frequently cited incidents" subsection? It would be better to add content to the article, so that they are no longer merely "bits", than to organize the article by conflict rather than by topic. Also, per your objection that the new title exists solely to "rationalize the David vs. Goliath map"... while I strongly feel that you should argue this point on Template:Infobox Arab-Israeli conflict and that my inclusion of the infobox is both neutral and perfectly justified, I am willing to compromise and remove the infobox, since you so strongly object to it and since it is not, in my opinion, arguing over. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 10:41, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
Also support revert to original title. The change in title seems to have allowed further use of the David-Goliath map; it now appears twice at the top of the page. As it was earlier established that this map may not encapsulate the situation fairly, the use of the map, as well as the change in title, seems suspect, if not rather ironic. I support reverting to the original title. S.Wilson (talk) 10:47, 10 July 2008 (UTC)
S.Wilson, the map accurately portrays the states which have been directly involved in the Arab-Israeli conflict. It is objective fact. Or do you think that the Middle East is shaped differently? This article is in dire need of illustrations. The map provides an opening illustration for the article which is indisputable objective fact and which also provides links to other related articles. If you can find me a suitable opening illustration to replace the larger infobox, I will gladly have the larger infobox removed. The smaller one, however, really should remain, since the Media coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict article is now a part of the "Arab-Israeli conflict series". The smaller one provides useful links and does not identify the participants, which may make it less objectionable to you. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 03:21, 11 July 2008 (UTC)

DryBones Comic

Hi, RomaC. I believe you wanted to discuss the image from DryBones? While the image was pulled off of the blog, since these comics are frequently featured in the Jerusalem Post, the comic was topical, and since it is referenced only to explain its viewpoint -- not to substantiate facts -- I thought that the inclusion of the comic was appropriate. Of course, I would be glad to hear your input on the matter. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 08:50, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

Hi Michael Safyan, I still have reservations about blog material here but am more concerned at this point with balance, and there is also a Palestinian comic so I am satisfied. cheers RomaC (talk) 12:41, 1 June 2008 (UTC)

Fisk: Mystery of Israel's Secret Uranium Bomb

I'm still finding nothing stating that the reports on Israel using Uranium-based weapons were "found to be false". All I'm seeing is the UN saying Israel did not use depleted uranium during conflict with Hizbollah, UN agency finds, which does not match what's in the article, and is denying something quite different - the two named labs (and a military science professor) says that it was enriched Uranium that was found. And of course, we don't accept what is only in headlines anyway, as I'm sure you know).

I've asked this repeatedly, I'm not sure what the problem is but this is clearly a breach of BLP. We don't accuse living people of publishing falsifications, particularly not in their profession. (This is on top of a raft of other objections to this article, about which you admit to be operating an undocumented policy of your own). PRtalk 11:21, 13 June 2008 (UTC)

To answer your question, Robert Fisk's article cannot be described as a "report". It is an article which does not so much report as speculate. Its claims are formed as questions, not as statements. For example, the opening sentence asks "Did Israel use a secret new uranium-based weapon in southern Lebanon this summer in the 34-day assault that cost more than 1,300 Lebanese lives, most of them civilians?" ([1]) It is this speculation, which UNEP refutes. As you say, we do not "accept what is only in headlines" (this is not entirely true, though; in certain cases where the headline was crafted by senior level editors, then headlines sometimes do matter, but that's a whole other story), and you will note that the UNEP found that there was no evidence that Israel used depleted Uranium nor any other form of Uranium-based weapon; as stated in the article, "no DU shrapnel, or other radioactive residue, was found. The analysis of all smear samples taken shows no DU, nor enriched uranium nor higher than natural uranium content in the samples." ([2])
How is it a breach of WP:BLP to state that the speculations of an individual are found to be false? Let us put it this way: should the article on the Iraq war claim that there were WMDs in Iraq, because it might constitute a violation of WP:BLP against George W. Bush to say that he was wrong? That's ridiculous, and you know it. WP:BLP prohibits committing libel. For example, claiming that an individual had an adulterous affair when that is not the case or there is no evidence to support it. A requirement of libel, however, is that it is not provably true. Claims which are provably true, whether detrimental to a given individual or not, do not constitute libel. Also, I am not convinced that WP:BLP even applies in this case, since the subject matter is Robert Fisk's article, and not Robert Fisk himself. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:09, 13 June 2008 (UTC)
The speculations of Fisk and the Independent have not been found to be false. We don't have even one usable RS to suggest they're wrong, only a report that says "evidence not found" (20km away) - by a report which confirms the area has effectively been mined.
This nonsense has gone on long enough, nothing has been proved false, and the article as it stands is in clear breach of WP:BLP. PRtalk 19:04, 14 June 2008 (UTC)
PalestineRemembered's argument is a negative proof. It is logically equivalent to saying that Santa Claus exists because nobody has proven that he doesn't exist. PalestineRemembered argument also appears to rely on a false premise thereby making it double wrong: a logical fallacy based on disinformation. That kind of thing might hold water on Al-Aqsa TV, but not here on Wikipedia. --GHcool (talk) 20:35, 14 June 2008 (UTC)
As I understand it, what happened is that a test run by folks associated with the European Green Party found high levels of radioactivity in a site hit with Israeli bombs. This led to reasonable speculation about depleted uranium (a "conventional" weapon which causes somewhat elevated levels of radioactivity, and very high chemical toxicity,) as well as wild speculation about a radiological bomb or some kind of science fiction micro-nuke. Subsequent tests run by the UN found no elevated radioactivity. I think we can just state these facts without the POV/OR assertion that the Green guy was wrong and the UN was right. Actually that's what the article does in its present iteration, and I'm fine with it. What is the specific language in dispute here? <eleland/talkedits> 21:14, 14 June 2008 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Oh gee, GHC, you were doing so well until that gratuitous edit of your comment. Why don't you just assume good faith, edit reasonably, and ignore provocations from people like PR, instead of poisoning Wikipedia with these wild accusations and comparisons to Hamas. I generally refrain from comparing you to Meir Kahane, you can manage to do the equivalent for PR. <eleland/talkedits> 21:14, 14 June 2008 (UTC)
To Eleland: I did not compare PalestineRemembered to Hamas, but after reading your comment, I can see how my comment can be misinterpreted that way. Therefore, I have stricken that statement out of my original comment and apologize for the misunderstanding. On an unrelated note, I'd like to remind you that Meir Kahane is not the mirror image of Hamas, but I understand your point anyway. --GHcool (talk) 05:29, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
I'm still not seeing anything that says the findings were false, other than one headline, which is not something we would use (and concerns a different, minor, allegation about DU).
The words we're using, "Fisk speculated" are an attack on his professional integrity, it's clear he was reporting the speculations of others eg ""The first is that the weapon was some novel small experimental ... The second is that the weapon was a bunker-busting conventional uranium penetrator weapon employing enriched uranium rather than depleted uranium." (Editors may or may not wish to stigmatise this Ph.D as unreliable, but it's clearly not Fisk's fault that his expert is in two minds).
Meanwhile, a Military Science professor also speculates in a different, non-Fisk article: "The only logical military reason for the presence of traces of uranium ... to make a hard, dense penetrator for an armour-piercing or "bunker-busting" device. ... The Khiam sample, with 108 parts U-238 to one of U-235 - just under one per cent - is clearly enriched - but not much ... why was this enigmatic material used?" For "enigmatic", the Independent substituted "mystery" - both parties would have been quite within their rights to call it "dirty bomb material". This example may or may not give a useful insight into "The Media in the ME", but it's hugely different to what we have in the article.
We could either modify this section to genuinely reflect the operations of the Media in the ME, newspaper accuses government, government denies, newspaper proved right, makes another highly credible (and much more damaging) allegation based on substantial scientific evidence.
Or, if that's too strong, we operate to policy and take out the section that seeks to defame a live person, Robert Fisk, as a falsifier. Especially since the reference we're using (an attack-dog for Israel) states he spoke too soon, not that he falsified anything, nor even that "he speculated". PRtalk 11:12, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
PR, this has already been explained to you. It is not just the headline, but the actual UN report states, in the body of the report '"no DU shrapnel, or other radioactive residue, was found. The analysis of all smear samples taken shows no DU, nor enriched uranium nor higher than natural uranium content in the samples.". Go find another dead horse to flog. Canadian Monkey (talk) 14:47, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
Canadian Monkey you are not being civil. Kindly change your tone. Cheers! RomaC (talk) 15:08, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
fair enough. I've stricken out the gratuitous comment. Canadian Monkey (talk) 16:13, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
As anyone reading the UNEP report will see, this is not a denial, only a statement that fresh samples (apparently taken on either bank of the Litani river, 20km away) showed no evidence of uranium, depleted or enriched. Only the headline (which cannot function as an RS) denies that suspect material was ever used by Israel - but refers to DU, which is not the subject of the allegation.
Furthermore, this came out long after the Fisk article, which we mischaracterise, claiming that it was his speculation.
Even if there wasn't doubt all over the way this has been written, we'd take it out as a BLP. PRtalk 20:47, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
As anyone reading the UNEP report will see, you did not read it. The report says that 32 different sites were sampled, both north and south of the Litani (I don't know where this '20km away' comes from) - and no DU was found nor any other abnormal radiation levels which would be associated with nuclear weapons of any kind. The UN report is unequivocal - please stop misrepresenting what it says. Canadian Monkey (talk) 23:15, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
There are serious factual flaws in what you're saying, since the UN didn't re-sample the bunkers where the original samples came from (two named labs and a prof report on "enriched uranium") - the UN specifically tells us that they sampled (perhaps both banks of the river from a boat?) a site some 20km away. The UN (other than in the unusable headline) don't claim to have proved a negative, only not to have confirmed a positive.
Then there is the wording of the article, Fisk didn't speculate, he reported the clearly expressed speculations of others.
Then there is the nonsense of treating this case as "government right, media wrong", when the story is the very opposite.
Then there's the breach of BLP.
Then there's the fact I've only selected one incident out of 5, all of which have problems (though not the same BLP). The Grossman business is particularly irrelevant, unless it's proving how much pressure can be applied on western media on those few occasions they wrongly impugn Israel by mistake (as in this NYT case). The press is bound to have made the same mistakes on behalf of Israel sometimes - something much more useful could be found by examining the results of such cases. PRtalk 11:09, 16 June 2008 (UTC)
You are either making things up, or seriously lacking in your reading comprehension. This is what the UNEP report says: "The weapons sub-team visited 32 sites south and north of the Litani River. Following strict field procedures a range of smear, dust and soil samples were taken. The samples were analyzed in October-November at an internationally recognised laboratory in Switzerland.

The samples taken by the UNEP scientists show no evidence of penetrators or metal made of DU or other radioactive material. In addition, no DU shrapnel, or other radioactive residue was found. The analysis of all smear samples taken shows no DU, nor enriched uranium nor higher than natural uranium content in the samples. ". 32 sites south and north of the Litani River means they went to 32 different places, some geographically south of the Litani, such as al-Khiam, and some North of the Litnay, such as Beirut, not 32 different spots on the banks of the Litani river. Canadian Monkey (talk) 14:50, 16 June 2008 (UTC)

I am grateful to User:Eleland for pointing out that the ECCR (perhaps a troika, of which Dr Chris Busby is one part) is "activist" in a nice, scientific, way - their work on the measurements and effects of small doseage radiation is different from official sources. But each of them is on other, official, bodies, and their honesty, integrity and scientific work is not in doubt.
It turns out there was a significant scientific controversy[3][4] over this business and it is quite likely to flare again. But the Independent has treated it entirely properly throughout, later publishing an even-handed (perhaps even Israel-friendly) response "Achim Steiner, under-secretary general and executive director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) ... said that the scientific analysis found no evidence of penetrators or other metallic bomb components made of depleted or enriched uranium, as claimed by two British activists in a report last month".
However, this interesting aside simply makes the inclusion of this incident in a "Media Coverage" article (where we've treated it as "unwarranted speculation in the press") even more problematic - Israel has (apparently) been caught in denial once over using white phosphorus, and most people would be very surprised to hear that Israel is not using DU (since the US and UK are doing so). Many will be waiting for the media to expose this use - and think that that's what "Media Coverage" is about.
Don't get me wrong - the details of this affair are important to other topics and articles. But this only makes it even more important that we don't misuse the details in a fashion that hides (two?) real stories and creates a non-story.
And on top of all the other problems, we have a serious logical failure as well, whereby failure to prove a positive becomes proof of a negative. I may need a specialist on logic to bring to User:Canadian Monkeys understanding why this argument is invalid (as well as not being from an RS). PRtalk 13:03, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
The Independent published a front page story with a bold headlines and emotive (though irrelevant) pictures, wildly speculating that Israel used nuclear weapons in Lebenon. That story received very wide media coverage- to this day you can find dozens of sites that carry it. The UN quickly assembled a team that conducted a thorough investigation – and found the story to be baseless. Media watchdogs and other critics point to this as a case of biased media coverage. Based on the above, it clearly belongs in this article. If you want to add it to other articles and topics where it might be relevant, go right ahead. Canadian Monkey (talk) 14:31, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
PalestineRemembered is making a straw man out of Canadian Monkey's argument. Canadian Monkey is not arguing that "failure to prove a positive becomes proof of a negative." What he is arguing is that until and unless compelling positive evidence surfaces, the Wikipedia community will remain skeptical of unlikely claims. Similarly, the Wikipedia community does not currently include the claim that Elvis is alive within the Elvis Presley article, however, if and when compelling positive evidence for that unlikely claim surfaces, the Wikipedia community will quickly amend the Elvis Presley article to reflect this reality. --GHcool (talk) 16:28, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
Intriguingly of course, the main Muhammad al-Durra article and this page as well both give considerable prominence or weight to exactly such unlikely claims in respect of that individual. --Nickhh (talk) 18:23, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
I can see the WP:UNDUE in the other article, and the way one discussion is treated as something else. But are there actual falsehoods entered there? PRtalk 09:50, 18 June 2008 (UTC)
Laka Foundation: "no reason to believe that DU weaponry has been used by Israel during the July/August 2006 war." [5]Tundrabuggy (talk) What is Laka? [6] See also News: [7]Here's what I was looking for, the methodology report. Please read: Did Israel use experimental bombs with (enriched)uranium in Lebanon Tundrabuggy (talk) 02:03, 25 June 2008 (UTC)
"At his home Kobeissi had collected tens of samples from shrapnel and soil from more than 50 different places. None of these samples measured a higher radiation dose rate than the background radiation dose rate. The samples were measured with a calibrated geiger counter from Laka Foundation." from the LAKA article. All of which conflicts with this: "As I understand it, what happened is that a test run by folks associated with the European Green Party found high levels of radioactivity ("elevated radiation signatures"[1]) in a site hit with Israeli bombs". The same site Kobeissi's samples came from presumably. Busby did not visit the site and relied upon others (non-experts in sample collection?) to collect samples while the LAKA visited the site. What is of interest is that the LAKA report came out on "12th October, 2006" and the Fist article was dated "Saturday, 28 October 2006 Fisk".Tundrabuggy (talk) 01:58, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
Thankyou very much. There is clearly something quite strange going on here, with a severe and worrying difference of opinion amongst people we'd normally expect to trust and/or AGF. There may even be a "Media Coverage" issue after all - though I don't feel it's the one we're claiming to identify. PRtalk 22:03, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

Bias more generally

I also can't help noticing that when you get to the example sections towards the end of the article, they are heavily skewed one way. For example the "Frequently cited incidents" section flags up six supposed incidents - all of which are instances of allegedly unfair or even fraudulent "anti-Israel" reporting. The "Films .." section flags up three films, two of which are presented as if they were justifiably critical of Palestinians or the "anti-Israel" media, in that they carry no counter-criticism; by contrast the third is noted as being critical of pro-Israeli activist groups - but then in turn the bulk of the detail presented here about it is criticism of the film itself. If someone (maybe even me) could invest the time, there is plenty of evidence out there that could be built into this article relating to Israeli bids to control or mislead the media or to exploit its influence (as there is for any other government or group), and there is also plenty of evidence pointing to how the media can help generate misconceptions about the nature of the conflict. --Nickhh (talk) 19:02, 17 June 2008 (UTC)

I believe I already addressed this in #Incidents of controversial media reporting above. I will save you the trouble of looking up there, though, by summarizing here what was already said there. Basically, I freely admit that I am more familiar with claims made by the pro-Israel watchdogs than with the claims made by pro-Palestinian watchdogs. I included the incidents with which I was familiar. After spending hours and hours on Google searching for similar claims made pro-Palestinian watchdogs, I gave up. If you are familiar with incidents of controversial reporting which are frequently cited by pro-Palestinian watchdogs, I would be more than glad to have them included in the article. Please be bold and include them. Likewise, if you know of other films pertaining to media coverage of the Arab-Israeli or Israeli-Palestinian conflicts -- whether these films are pro-Israel, pro-Palestinian, or neutral --, please feel free to add them to the article at any time; I would be glad to have them included. I hope I have answered your questions/concerns to your satisfaction. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 20:07, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
Sorry, I did notice that part of talk but assumed that was based broadly on the section as was in the old article (I know there was quite a big rewrite of the stuff here on this topic). Plus my point about balance still stands really, and I would add more if I had time to research them and write them up. maybe later I or someone else will. As to your finding that it was easier to dig up "pro-Israeli" claims than "pro-Palestinian" ones, one could come to the conclusion that advocates of the "Israeli" position put a lot more effort into interacting with the media and commenting on media coverage - which is an interesting point for this topic in its own right of course ... --Nickhh (talk) 07:41, 18 June 2008 (UTC)
The problem in this article is that the "controversies" are artificial. The Grossman case is a simple slip-up, the significant "Media" element (if it's worth mentioning atall) is the fact that the NYT was forced to make 2 retractions. The article urgently needs a section comparing retractions in "both directions". (I don't actually recall any "to the Palestinians"). The significant "Media" element of the Independent case is that Israel has (apparently) lied over the white phosphorus use, and has denied using DU, when there is quite good evidence they not only used it, they used enriched uranium. When the US and the UK are using DU (and all share fairly similar technology) it's quite startling if Israel is not using it.
If you're genuine about putting in "Media" elements from the "opposite angle", then I'd suggest the business of the "Jenin Massacre", where the blogosphere seized on this element and claimed it had been disproved, managing to force first the US, then the English-speaking world's press to shut up on the topic. The off-stage clamour went on to smear the Palestinian spokesman so badly he's hardly ever been interviewed again (similar happened to Hanan Ashawi, who is actually a Christian). Nobody actually retracted what they'd said (easy enough to prove, the blogosphere bemoaned it). Almost nobody declared there'd been "No massacre" (though the BBC wrongly said "UN says no massacre in Jenin"), but the atmosphere of intimidation meant that the western media dare not use those words again. You'd never guess it, but there's even one (small) "up-against-the-wall" Nazi-style massacre in the RS, so both possible definitions of the word apply. PRtalk 20:54, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
  • The Accusation: "Almost nobody declared there'd been "No massacre" [in Jenin in April 2002] (though the BBC wrongly said "UN says no massacre in Jenin"), but the atmosphere of intimidation meant that the western media dare not use those words again."
  • The Reality: Not only did the BBC report that the UN said there was no evidence of a massacre in Jenin in April 2002, as PalestineRemembered himself admits, but the BBC also reported that a military advisor to Amnesty International said the same thing.[8] So did Human Rights Watch,[9] Colin Powell,[10] and[11] In fact, almost the exact opposite of PalestineRemembered's claim is true; I just did a Google search for the terms "Jenin massacre" and found that 9 out of 10 sites on the first page of the search results say that the April 2002 event in Jenin can not reasonably be classified as a massacre (one site was just a list of hyperlinks to articles on other sites about the Battle of Jenin). The early misjudgment by much of the media in the immediate aftermath of the Battle of Jenin by calling the event a "massacre" is an excellent example of the media's bias against Israel. --GHcool (talk) 23:21, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
Well initially of course no-one knew how many people had been killed - both sides were giving very high death toll estimates, Shimon Peres was reportedly using the word in the context of events and the IDF was barring outside observers from the camp to verify what was happening one way or the other. Even when the final death toll was confirmed, plenty of people continued to call what happened a massacre. The word doesn't just refer to the numbers killed, it can cover how they were killed, the circumstances of their deaths etc - many civilians were killed in Jenin, and Human Rights Watch said there was evidence of IDF war crimes. The word "massacre" can be and is applied to a wide range of incidents, with plenty of controversy about that labelling (see debates on various Wikipedia pages ad nauseam). --Nickhh (talk) 07:56, 18 June 2008 (UTC)

Nickhh I agree the examples section is stacked to support the Israeli side, the article has been like that forever and many editors have given up trying to change it. If you have the will to proceed please do. We can of course achieve better balance by subtraction, but that would almost certainly start a revert war. So, to start could you please add some examples that will make this article more balanced? Thanks. RomaC (talk) 08:05, 18 June 2008 (UTC)

Expansion: Status & Help

Hi. I would just like to report what I've done, what I plan to do, and what I could use help with, in terms of expanding the article. For the "According to Pro-Palestinian Watchdog Groups" subsection under the "Editorializing" section, I Googled "editorialize", "opinion", "editorial", and "subjectively" (independent searches) on Arab Media Watch, Palestine Media Watch, FAIR, IMEU, and WRMEA (using "site:"). Most of the search results turned up articles about opinion pieces (why these organizations waste time critiquing opinion pieces for bias beats me), while some others (especially on AIR and Arab Media Watch) were unrelated to the topic. So, if anyone has some spare time and can think of other pro-Palestinian media watchdog groups to search or if anyone already knows of an appropriate article to quote for that section, that would be incredibly useful. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 07:49, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Regarding the "Prejudiced Journalists" section... I could have sworn that pro-Israel groups have criticized Christiane Amanpour for her Iranian background; however, I scanned God's Jewish Warrior's -- CNN's Abomination by CAMERA and CNN's "God's Warriors": Hard on Jews, Soft on Islam by HonestReporting, and neither article mentions her background. I am also fairly certain that pro-Palestinian groups have criticized Wolf Blitzer for his Jewish background. A quick search, though, turned up primarily fringe and borderline (if not more than borderline) anti-Semitic accusations against Wolf Blitzer by David Duke supporters. In any event, I will continue searching some more, and hopefully I will find something reasonable and topical... unless, of course, someone knows of a better example or two. Thank you for your time. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 07:49, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

On the "Common Elements" section/ Questions of the parellels in this section

Hi, I am new to this discussion. This article is not at all bad and has come a long way from its beginnings. It is making a serious effort in a difficult area. By the same token there are are few issues with some of the Common elements section that I would like to bring up. Currently there is a kind of balance or "parallelism" in the way the material is presented. Each side gets to present their issues based on their watchdog groups. It is important that balance stays in the article but there are a few places I have questions. I would like to expand on this as time goes on. Starting with the concept of Diction -- the pro-Israel section is theoretical enough, no sides are mentioned by name, they could be applied to either side:

  1. "Are acts of violence directed against civilians termed 'terror'?"
  2. "Are the perpetrators of violence described in passive or active terms?"
  3. "Did the story contain misleading definitions and terminology?"

Take a look at the difference on the pro-Palestinian side

  1. "Were the terms 'occupation/occupied' used appropriately?"
  2. "How many times was the words 'terror/terrorist' used to describe Palestinians/Palestinian actions vs. Israelis/Israeli actions?"
  3. "How many times was the word 'violence' used to describe Palestinian actions vs. Israeli actions?"
  4. "Were the words 'response/retaliation' used to describe Palestinian/Israeli actions?"
  5. "Did the story appropriately use the word 'alleged'?"

"Appropriate use" is a subjective term , but discussing the use of the word "occupation" clearly only refers to the Israeli side. How many times the word "terror" or "violence" is used should depend upon the facts at hand, not a number count. The question is if the use of such words is accurate and honestly applied. In fact, the pro-Palestinian side seems to me to use this section to push for their own diction for particular language. Notice the constant use of "Palestinian/Israeli" in their section.

Similarly in the next section on Omission, the HR questions are theoretical and could apply equally to both sides:

1. "Was the reporting one-sided and imbalanced?"
2. "Was key information missing (selective omission)?"

Whereas the PMW questions are particular and appear to be pushing an agenda:

1. "How many times were UN reports/findings/resolutions mentioned?"
2. "How many times were Human Rights reports/findings/statements mentioned?"
3. "Did the story describe official Palestinian denials/pleas of ignorance and innocence in violent acts?"
4. "Did the story describe official Israelis denials/pleas of ignorance and innocence in violent acts?

Israel and her supporters have long believed that the UN is biased against Israel, and so too most of the human rights groups. Think what you like of it, it is strongly believed by most of the Israeli and diaspora Jews, as well as Christian Zionists and many conservatives. The idea that balance can only be achieved by counting the numbers of references to UN reports seems to me to be mistaken at best. Again, accurate reporting of the facts of each case is what required. The pro-Israel side talks in universals, the Palestinian side in particulars. To be fair and balanced, I would think that either the Israeli side should discuss particulars, or the Palestinians should speak only of universals ... Hope I am being clear and would appreciate your thoughts. Tundrabuggy (talk) 03:01, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

In the common elements section, I sought to include general criticisms of the media which were not about a particular news report or publication. In several instances, such general statements were unavailable, and it was necessary to use a criticism of a particular news report/publication to demonstrate the form of critique. In the "Diction" section, statements were available from both the pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian watchdogs which were not specific to any article/broadcast. However, as you note, the statements made by the pro-Israel watchdogs were more broad and vague on the subject than the statements made by the pro-Palestinian watchdogs. I do not, however, see this as being imbalanced, and we certainly cannot put words in the mouths of these organizations in order to make it balanced. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 19:50, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
I see it as being unbalanced. Consider this from the section on decontextualization, from the pro-Palestinian side:

"Were Palestinian actions described in context (e.g., 'Palestinians launched a mortar attack after Israelis bulldozed a row of houses')?" "Were Israeli actions described in context (e.g., 'Israelis bulldozed a row of houses after Palestinians launched a mortar attack')?

Again the Israeli side is innocuous and unspecific, whereas in this example we have Israelis bulldozing a row of houses. Is this a theoretical event? Did Israel actually bulldoze a row of houses in relation to a mortar attack from the Palestinians? Is there a link for this or is this a hypothetical construct? Tundrabuggy (talk) 20:14, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

Curious edits

Per this diff:

Tundrabuggy, can you please explain why, in a direct quote of HonestReporting's "Understanding Bias" article, you added your own material not found in the source? Also, can you explain why you changed the neutral term "book" to the phrase "scholarly material", which introduces a judgment about the quality of the material? If you want to add an online source which is not a book, simply add it to the "External links" section. There is no need to introduce subjective wording or unsourced material into the article. Thank you. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 19:32, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
Sure. 1st question first. The material was from the CAMERA source noted just above the HonestREporting source. 2nd) Neutral term "books" as I noted in my edit summary, was not accurate as there were journals, and even other visual material included. I had thought to use "books and journals" until I noticed reports and visual material. I did not intend to imply a judgment to the material -- just made the assumption that if it wasn't somewhat scholarly it wouldn't be up there. Just wanted to make it accurate to reflect the reality. Feel free to change it to something that does. My rationale for making the changes in the DICTION section is made in the talk section just above this one. Line 5 : [12] not verbatim but close Tundrabuggy (talk) 19:52, 27 June 2008 (UTC)also I made a point of not using quotes. Tundrabuggy (talk)
Ok. Sorry for my harsh response. It seems there was simply a miscommunication/misunderstanding. As per the "books" vs. "scholarly material", since there are journals and other forms of publications which are not in book form, per-se, then the more generic term "publications" is in order. I apologize for misjudging your intentions on the change. As for direct quotes, it is important that citations are properly added, even when the source has already been previously quoted. In order to cite a source multiple times, one should name the reference in its first use (as in <ref name="nameofthereference">contents of reference</ref>) and then one can use an empty reference tag with the same name on the second use (as in <ref name="nameofthereference" />). Doing so ensures that readers and editors can verify the quote. Omitting the quotation marks in indented text is not the proper way to paraphrase a quotation; instead, please maintain the quotation marks but place any paraphrased material in brackets. For example, "This is a quote, and [this part] has been [paraphrased]". Quotes can only be "tampered with" in two ways: by paraphrasing with brackets or by omitting with ellipses. Of course, neither type of alteration is permitted to change the meaning of the original quote. Interleaving quotes is simply not permitted. The only circumstance in which such a thing could even be remotely permitted is if it were made absolutely 100% clear that the quotes have been interleaved and if it were made 100% clear which parts came from which source. Since there is neither a widely accepted/understood nor stylistically pleasant way of doing that, please don't. Thank you. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 04:15, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
First, no problem. Thanks for the lesson on referencing. That has to be the hardest part of wiki editing there is. Would you advise on this then? From the CAMERA source:

ACTIVISTS, PALESTINIAN: This term is often used to describe Palestinians engaging in violent acts such as shooting, rock-throwing or launching mortars. It is also applied to Palestinians who are members of groups listed as terrorist organizations by the U.S. State Department, such as Islamic Jihad and Hamas. Like “protestor” or “demonstrator,” “activist” suggests someone who participates in marches, waving signs and shouting slogans.

Now if I used the footnote correctly(ie named it first,etc- as you pointed out)could I say this? Would it be acceptable stylistically? Is there some way to do it or do you figure it impossible and unnecessary?
  1. "Are the perpetrators of violence described in passive or active terms?" "Are terms like “protestor,” “demonstrator,”or “activist”.... used to describe those engaging in violent acts?."[2]
Also, I am reading a book about Media Bias against Israel pre 1982 Lebanon war[3] and includes some egregious media events as per the '82 war and also the hijacking of Flight 847. I would like to see this article reach a little further back. Will discuss this further with you on my talk page if you prefer. Tundrabuggy (talk) 15:57, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
I definitely understand why you want to do that; unfortunately, I do not think that is an acceptable form of quoting. How about the following, though:
In its 'Dictionary of Bias' article, CAMERA criticizes the media for applying the term "activist" to Palestinians engaging in violent actions:[2]

"[The term 'activist'] is often used to describe Palestinians engaging in violent acts such as shooting, rock-throwing or launching mortars. It is also applied to Palestinians who are members of groups listed as terrorist organizations by the U.S. State Department, such as Islamic Jihad and Hamas. Like 'protestor' or 'demonstrator,' 'activist' suggests someone who participates in marches, waving signs and shouting slogans."

Rather than mixing the above in with the HonestReporting quotes, I would simply append the above to that section. Does that work for you? ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:31, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
It does Michael but if we were to put that up we would have other issues of balance to deal with. The pro-Palestinian side would want to elaborate as well. Perhaps the problem is more that I have a problem with the way the PMW describes things. It is as if they have a built-in bias incorporated into their discussion, eg....they believe the media is demonstrating "omission" if they do not talk about UN resolutions or Human Rights Watch reports sufficiently often. I will leave if for now and sit on it for a bit. Thanks again for your help. Tundrabuggy (talk) 03:11, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
If we were to put that up we would have other issues of balance to deal with. Indeed. I am glad that you came to this conclusion on your own. It would be impossible to make all sections 100% perfectly balanced. While we can (and should) certainly strive for that goal, realistically there will be some sections which give slightly more space to Palestinian grievances and there will be some sections which give slightly more space to Israeli grievances, with the article giving roughly equal space to Israeli and Palestinian grievances, overall. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 06:55, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
CAMERA is a deeply problematical source, prone to ethno-specific generalisations of a kind we'd never accept if they were aimed at another group. HonestReporting seems little better. PRtalk 19:36, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
Check out the subject matter, PR, the article is about bias. Please stop with the accusations already. If you have an "ethno-specific generalisation" to complain about, put it up. Never mind the drive-by assassinations. Tundrabuggy (talk) 02:59, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
PalestineRemembered, I happen to disagree. However, what I think and what you think about CAMERA doesn't matter. Nor does the quality of CAMERA and HonestReporting (and of PalestineMediaWatch, ArabMediaWatch, etc.) matter with respect to this article. This article merely documents Israeli and Palestinian grievances against the media, no more and no less. The article does not evaluate the validity or invalidity of these grievances nor does it evaluate the quality or character of those who bring these grievances. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 06:55, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
If we have any chance of contributing effectively to articles then we're bound to assess the worth of different sources of information, and we're morally bound to share with other editors the basis on which we accept or reject particular information. In CAMERA's case we don't even need to note that Israeli RS's ignore them as tendatious complainers, we can quickly scan their output and eliminate them as a hate-source, frequently publishing racist garbage. PRtalk 21:57, 23 July 2008 (UTC)
← Unindent

PalestineRemembered, it is one thing to state that CAMERA should not be quoted as a source of information without explicit attribution or as a general source of information; it is quite another thing to say that CAMERA cannot be quoted, with explicit attribution, in order to demonstrate the position of CAMERA, itself, and of similar pro-Israel media watchdogs. No one is denying that CAMERA is a partisan source and, therefore, cannot be used as a general source of information in Wikipedia, as per WP:RS. That said, just because a source is partisan does not mean that the source is automatically wrong -- it simply means that the source has restricted uses in Wikipedia.

You claim that Israeli RS's ignore them [CAMERA] as tendatious complainers. This is hardly the case. CAMERA is one of the two most notable pro-Israel media watchdogs (the other one is HonestReporting). It is because of the organization's prominence that it is quoted so frequently as a representative of pro-Israel complaints of "anti-Israel media bias". You also accuse CAMERA of being a hate source and of frequently publishing racist garbage. Having scanned through numerous CAMERA articles, statements, and reports for this Wikipedia article, I have come across nothing remotely hateful or racist. Please explain yourself. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 22:38, 23 July 2008 (UTC)

Look up the article entitled "A Study in Palestinian Duplicity and Media Indifference", containing "despite copious evidence of their blatant lying ... refuting their fictitious 'massacre'". Get back to me when you find sources speaking of "Jewish duplicity" or "copious evidence of Israeli lying" referenced in articles and I'll walk on broken glass. PRtalk 18:59, 29 August 2008 (UTC)
PR, I see you making this argument in multiple articles (see [13] [14][]) – but it has already been pointed out to you that your analogy is fallacious. Mr. Hicks put it better than I can, so let me repeat his argument for you:

That analogy is, in a word, nonsense. The parallel to "Palestinian duplicity" is not "Jewish duplicity", a term with clear antiSemitic implications, but rather 'Israeli duplicity'. Both "Palestinian duplicity" and 'Israeli duplicity' are harsh terms, not understated diplomatic ones, but that does not make the sources using them non-reliable. Needless to say, we use such sources in Wikipedia all the time. For example, Egypt's Al-Ahram weekly used the term "Israeli duplicity" (here, fore example), yet it is used extensively as a source for wikipedia articles such as Cinema of Egypt. Similarly, Stephen Walt uses the term in his book The Origins of Alliances, published by Cornell University Press - are we seriously suggesting that CUP or Walt's book is not a reliable source because it uses a harsh term?

. There's no need for you to walk on broken glass now, just stop repeating this fallacious argument.

- Canadian Monkey (talk) 20:41, 29 August 2008 (UTC)

Not to belabor this point, but “Russian duplicity”, for example, has been used by the The Independent ( – a source used in this very article, and one which you seem very supportive of. I suggest we put this argument to bed now. Canadian Monkey (talk) 20:48, 29 August 2008 (UTC)

My edits, and Michael Safyan's revert

Recently I made a series of edits to the article that:
  • Took out the word allege, which is a word to avoid
  • Took out a couple unnecessary words in a sentence
  • Moved the external links section to the bottom, which is usually where people put the links section
  • and took out unnecessary words in the headlines.
All of my edits were reverted by Michael Safyan. I would of been fine if he reverted some of my edits, but I think reverting them all is going to far. I'm fine with my work on the lead being reverted, and that moved the links section to the bottom. If you have a problem with those two things, we don't have to discuss those. However, I do have a problem with adding back material that violates guidelines, and I would like to discus re-adding those edits. Michael Safyan, will you explain which edits of mine you dislike, and why they shouldn't be in the article? Thanks for your time, and I hope we can reach a compromise quickly:-)--SJP (talk) 06:38, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Ok. Here is the diff. Let's discuss one change at a time. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:07, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Argue vs. Allege

First, it should be noted that -- by my count -- the word "allege" (or one of its variants) occurs fourteen times in unquoted text in the article. Any decision, therefore, will impact the other thirteen uses of the term. Also, it should be noted that Wikipedia does allow the use of the term "allege", "alleged", or "allegedly". The Wikipedia policy states:

"Alleged (along with allegedly) and purported (along with purportedly) ... are generally used by those who genuinely have no predisposition as to whether the statement being cited is true or not. Newspapers, for instance, almost universally refer to any indicted but unconvicted criminal as an alleged criminal. Therefore, there is no neutrality problem with using them. However, there may be a problem of ambiguity—they should only be used where the identity of the alleger is clear."

The article has been very careful to make the alleger clear wherever the term has appeared. I see no reason to change this wording. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:07, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Hostile media effect

Since I forgot to add the source for this clause, you were completely in the right to remove it. I have just now added the source. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:07, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Opinion vs. Perceptions

Although the terms are fairly similar, I think the term "perceptions" is more appropriate than "opinion". Perceptions include how one understands the events as they unfold; while, opinion is more like a condensed, after the fact, "it was bad". Maybe I'm wrong. That's how the terms strike me. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:07, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

External links

Well, you got me on this one. Most Wikipedia articles do use the other order. Maybe if I explain my rationale for the current order, I will change your mind, though. To me, "external links" and "see also" are fairly similar; both provide links for further reading/knowledge on the subject. The only difference between these two sections is that "see also" consists of Wikipedia articles exclusively, while "external links" consists of non-Wikipedia articles exclusively. It therefore seems appropriate that "external links" should follow "see also", especially when:

  1. External links provide more general information which would be useful to the reader, while the references contain numerous links provided for trivia (dates, number, and other data).
  2. References can be quickly accessed by clicking on the internal links provided with all citations.
  3. Readers who begin with the "see also" section cannot quickly jump to the "external links" and will have to scroll through a lengthy (even with 3 columns) list of references, which they will probably ignore.

I would prefer to have the "external links" follow the "see also" section. However, in the interests of consistency, I will accede to your wishes if you still think the "external links" should be separated from the "see also" section, with "references" in between them. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:07, 2 July 2008 (UTC)


Most of these changes were perfectly fine. The only changes with which I disagree are: "The New Media and the Internet" to "New Media and the Internet" and "The Internet" to "Internet". The titles ought to distinguish between general and specific terms. For example, "media" conveys all forms of communication; while the term "the media" is understood to refer to a specific subset of media, namely a set of prominent newspapers and television news stations. Likewise, "new media" could mean any form of communication which has come into existence "recently" (according to some definition of "recently"). By contrast, "the new media" is clearly understood to refer to a collection of online media with user-generated content and often with "Web 2.0" technology (by which I mean XHR/Ajax). Similarly, "internet" (or, as a section title, "Internet") is any type of multi-level computer network whereas "the Internet" (or, as a section title, "The Internet") is a specific type of (i.e. implementation of) internet, using TCP/IP. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 18:07, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

I'm fine with having a layout where the links section is at the bottom, and is separated from the see also section by the references. As for the section "The New Media and the Internet", I stand by my edits. I don't think adding "the" will make it any more clear for the average person, thus it isn't needed. Also, "the" doesn't seem to usually be used in headlines. Also, I suggest we take "media" out of the "Media watchdog groups" and change it to "Watchdog groups". Since this article is on the media, it's clearly talking about media watchdog groups.--SJP (talk) 07:47, 3 July 2008 (UTC)
Ok. I have moved the "External links" section to the bottom; however, I placed the bibliography and references in a scrollable box, so that the external links section remains accessible. Also, I agree with you that "media" is redundant in "Media watchdog groups", and so I have changed that to "Watchdog groups" as you recommended. As for "The New Media and the Internet", to my ears it just doesn't sound right to say "New Media and Internet"; however, as you say, it probably sounds perfectly fine for "the average person", and so I have restored that change as well. Have a good day. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 10:31, 3 July 2008 (UTC)

Factual Errors in Mo Al-Durrah section

I am starting this here because I am having a hard time rewriting the paragraph to fit the facts. Let me start with paragraph #2 as it currently reads:

External investigations suggested that the IDF could not have shot the boy and that the tape had been staged.[58][59] In order to avoid negative publicity and a resulting backlash, the IDF did not conduct its own investigation until 2007.[60] On October 1, 2007, Israel denied responsibility for the shooting and claimed that the France 2 footage had been staged,[61][62] prompting criticism from Al-Durrah's father.[63]

Initial investigations did show that that IDF could not have shot the boy, but not that the tape had been "staged." The accusation that the tape had been staged was not made until sometime later, after more of the rushes had been viewed. Initial investigations did show that it would not have been possible for the Israelis to have shot him. The IDF in fact did conduct its own investigation -- (this reference from Daniel Seaman of the Government Press Office [4] ) immediately following the incident.

Immediately after the story swept through the international media on September 30, 2000, OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Yom Tov Samia initiated a non-military investigation into the events reported by France 2. By virtue of his rank, this was an official investigation.

The article goes on to say:

Seaman states: "that In 2005, the head of the National Security Agency, Maj.-Gen. (res.) Giora Eiland, was presented with the arguments challenging the France 2 narrative. The findings of the investigation questioning the credibility of the France 2 footage were so overwhelming that Eiland publicly retracted the original admittance of IDF responsibility in the alleged incident and sent a letter to that effect to the French court."

Based on the "findings of the investigation," Israel's head of National Security "publicly retracted" the original "admittance of responsibility" in 2005. A more 'official' denial may have come in 2007, but this one was public and official and made in 2005. Tundrabuggy (talk) 19:40, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Unfortunately, when there is a dispute between information from JPost and information from the Israel News Agency, JPost wins out. If you could find a more reliable source disputing the information in JPost, then the appropriate changes can be made. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 09:22, 9 July 2008 (UTC)
Actually it could be considered a "dispute" between Caroline Glick and Daniel Seaman, as both articles are found on the JPost: [15] Seaman says that "In 2000, OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Yom Tov Samia initiated a non-military investigation into the events reported by France 2. By virtue of his rank, this was an official investigation." Tundrabuggy (talk) 04:39, 11 July 2008 (UTC)
Ok. It sounds like Israel questioned the France 2 report and revoked its admittance of guilt before 2007, but it did not officially deny responsibility until 2007. It also sounds like a non-military (i.e. non-IDF) investigation was conducted in 2001, but a military (i.e. IDF) investigation was not conducted until 2007. I have changed the section to include this information. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 16:46, 11 July 2008 (UTC)

Problematic edits

Hi, Tundrabuggy. I just reverted a number of your changes, so I thought I would explain why. Here are your changes and here is my reversion.

  1. MEMRI does not meet the inclusion criteria for the media watchdog groups list, since it does not monitor Western media and since it has a different purpose than other media watchdogs. Please see the inclusion criteria.
  2. Statements supporting war crimes allegations must be accompanied by statements rejecting the massacre claim in order to maintain balance.
  3. Jenin, Jenin does not meet the criteria for inclusion in the films list, since its primary topic is not media coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Please see the inclusion criteria.

Michael Safyan (talk) 09:19, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

Yes, I see where I was mistaken in having put those up. Sorry about that. I had best leave this article alone. I seem to be getting into trouble with it, lol. Sorry to cause you trouble. Best, --Tundrabuggy (talk) 18:26, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

Casual query - Rachel Corrie

There are discrepancies between Israeli media coverage of Rachel Corrie's death, and the international coverage. Anyone have any thoughts on inclusion of this story? LamaLoLeshLa (talk) 18:46, 15 July 2008 (UTC)

As I understand it, the dispute is not between Israeli and international coverage but rather between statements made by the IDF and statements made by the International Solidarity Movement. This might belong in the "omission" or "decontextualization" sections, if certain papers were accused of presenting the claims of only one side and not the other. While Palestinian organizations certainly cite this incident with great frequency, they do so -- as I understand it -- to support claims of Israeli brutality and to spread anger against Israel as well as to gain sympathy, not to support claims of biased media coverage. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 23:10, 15 July 2008 (UTC)

Coercion and censorship: Celebrations of the September 11, 2001 attacks

Per this diff, this diff, and this diff:

E0N, why do you insist on deleting this link? Please note that the see also links in the "According to pro-Israel watchdog groups" and the "According to pro-Palestinian watchdog groups" are based on the material quoted from these groups. The second quote from CAMERA states "PA thugs threatened journalists and photographers with harm ... during the widespread celebrations going on in the Palestinian territories shortly after the 9/11 attacks." For this reason, the link is relevant. While I am aware that (amid much controversy) the original article Celebrations of the September 11, 2001 attacks has been merged into Reactions to the September 11, 2001 attacks, this makes the content of Celebrations of the September 11, 2001 attacks no less relevant. Since Celebrations of the September 11, 2001 attacks still links to the particular section of Reactions to the September 11, 2001 attacks which refers to this incident, I ask that you leave the see-also link as-is. If you still wish to delete the link, please discuss this matter here rather than simply deleting the link. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 22:22, 22 July 2008 (UTC)
"E0N, why do you insist on deleting this link?" Simple, because the content was merged with Reactions to the September 11, 2001 attacks, as a result of consensus (which is not in the least bit controversial). The Celebrations page is merely a redirect, to guide visitors who may find the previous page by clicking on an old web link. The question therefore, is why do you insist on linking to a known redirect, when Wikipedia requires that you point directly at source, like this? The Page Tool What Links Here exists for a reason, allowing editors to update and refresh each article, bypassing redirects. This has nothing to do with "Coercion and censorship". — eon, 23:23, 22 July 2008 (UTC)
Take this example. [16] Page Media coverage of Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict redirects to Media coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Anything that links to the former article should be update to point directly at the latter. — eon, 23:35, 22 July 2008 (UTC)
That would be a satisfactory explanation if you had replaced the link to Celebrations of the September 11, 2001 attacks with a link to Reactions to the September 11, 2001 attacks or with a link to Reactions to the September 11, 2001 attacks#Palestinian reactions. However, you deleted the link altogether. I would also like to point out that the {{see also}} template does not allow for the link text to differ from the actual link. If you insist that we use Reactions to the September 11, 2001 attacks#Palestinian reactions rather than Celebrations of the September 11, 2001 attacks, I am willing to compromise -- although I would prefer to not present readers with link text containing a hash. However, it is unacceptable for you to remove the link in its entirety. Right now, you stand in violation of WP:3RR (with these diffs [17][18][19]) . Please self-revert now, and I will not report you. After you self-revert, if you so desire, you may change the link Celebrations of the September 11, 2001 attacks to Reactions to the September 11, 2001 attacks#Palestinian reactions. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 00:38, 23 July 2008 (UTC)
There is no guideline that says editors must replace one link with another. If you want to add a link to the Reactions page, then you are perfectly free to do so. Following on from the merger, I simply assigned myself the 'clean up' task of updating all pages that pointed to the old controversy article. That task is now complete. Media coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict is not on my watchlist. I have no plans to help improve this page in the future. Regarding the Three-revert rule, go ahead and report me, as is proper procedure, if you believe I had no right to make the edits that I did, specifically the first of the three, dated 17:55, 22 July 2008. (diff), which for some reason you think is wrong. — eon, 08:37, 23 July 2008 (UTC)
Generally, when an article has been renamed or merged into another article, links are updated to point to the new article, not deleted. You are not obligated to contribute to Media coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict, nor have I implied such an obligation; however, you are obligated to "do no harm." I do not intend to report you for violating WP:3RR, since that wouldn't accomplish anything. In the future, though, I hope you will replace rather than erase when "cleaning up". In order to avoid presenting readers with link text containing a hash while simultaneously avoiding the use of a redirect page, I have gone to the trouble of creating another see also template ({{see also2}}). With this template, the article appears to readers as before with a see also link with "Celebrations..." as the link text, but now the underlying link points to the "Reactions..." page. With that, I believe -- or rather, hope -- that this matter is now settled to our mutual satisfaction. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 09:54, 23 July 2008 (UTC)

Illustrations requested

Does anyone have any illustrations which could be used in this article? Thanks. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 05:09, 29 July 2008 (UTC)

The huge map has no place here

It was already agreed earlier (see relevant discussions above) that the huge David vs. Goliath map is irrelevant to an article on media coverage. Especially an article which for years was ridiculously biased but after some work from Michael Safyan and others had begun moving toward fairness. That map undermines the spirit of this fledgling article and makes a mockery of Wikipedia in general (the Comoros Islands as a 'belligerent'? gimme a break). RomaC (talk) 01:55, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

RomaC, there was no agreement. The map is not a "David vs. Goliath" map. It is a map of the Middle East, which has been colored to indicate both sides of the conflict. Moreover, it is part of a standard infobox which gives users access to related articles. I am reverting this edit. Please try to establish consensus through dialogue rather than merely taking action and falsely claiming consensus. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 02:19, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
It is not a map of the Middle East. And it has nothing to do with media coverage. It was challenged months ago and it was removed. I don't know when it was reverted but isn't that the edit that should have been discussed? If users want access to related articles there is a Wikilink in the first line of the article. Not enough of a reason to have the huge and irrelevant map dominate this article. Cheers. RomaC (talk) 02:36, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
My apologies, it is a map which includes parts of the Middle East and North Africa, indicating the participants in the Arab-Israeli conflict through the use of coloration. Regardless, the map correctly illustrates the participants in the Arab-Israeli conflict, it is relevant, it provides useful wikilinks, and -- more importantly -- there was no consensus to remove it. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 04:13, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

Compromise on map

Here is a compromise solution which I am willing to offer. If you have an alternative image to use in the lead which is found to be acceptable by all parties, then we replace {{Template:Infobox Arab-Israeli conflict}} with your proposed alternative image while at the same time maintaining the smaller {{Template:Arab-Israeli conflict}} infobox. This compromise is dependent, however, on your finding a suitable replacement lead image. This is the same compromise I offered the last time, for which I never heard a response. I hope you will give this due consideration. Is this compromise solution acceptable to you? ← Michael Safyan (talk) 04:17, 7 September 2008 (UTC) fix link JaakobouChalk Talk 15:01, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

I'm sensing ownership issues here. I am also "willing to offer" a compromise -- let's make the article about media coverage be about media coverage. Also, some of the countries on the map had never been at war with Israel, or had long ago made peace with Israel. AND actually, there was not "a" map but rather two different maps being used on the same page. So it/they is/were not only misleading and irrelevant but also inaccurate and inconsistent. RomaC (talk) 05:29, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
I do not claim to own the page. Rather, I am in a dispute with you about the map and am willing to end my dispute under the aforementioned conditions. While it is true that the majority of edits to this page are my own, this has more to do with the fact that I've been willing to spend the time to make these edits than about ownership, and I realize that -- despite my efforts -- this page does not belong to me. I am not alone in thinking that this infobox should stay. For example, 6SJ7 agrees that the infobox should remain. Perhaps we should get additional editors hear to ask for their input? ← Michael Safyan (talk) 05:33, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
Michael I think you also know it would depend only on whose input we solicited. Also there were two different maps -- creating more confusion than clarity. I trace this issue to when the article was suddenly changed from "Media Coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict" to "Media Coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict." Suggest changing it back to the original title, as the content and section titles are almost 100% concerned with that topic. The name change may have had good intentions but has caused more problems than it has solved. RomaC (talk) 05:43, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
Actually, that is not true at all. In fact, I have just requested input on the WP:IPCOLL page. Just because I had previously asked for input from Israeli users before -- when I was not aware of WP:CANVASS and the like -- doesn't mean I would do it again, now that I am familiar with the rules. Also, when I did do that, it wasn't malicious; I had expected the Palestinian editors to contact other Palestinian editors and thought that was just how it worked. Anyway, despite differences in opinion, I am not trying to be malicious. I just think that the article should have a relevant and useful lead graphic and have been unable to find an alternative graphic. The only other graphics I have found are this and this, both of which convey only the Israeli point-of-view. All I am asking you to do is to find a suitable graphic for the section lead, and then I won't care if only the smaller infobox is maintained. Does that make sense? Anyway, I hope that we will soon find a resolution. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 06:00, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
There was an editing conflict during my last edit. You made this change while I wrote the response above. With regard to the title,... the article was renamed while/before? it was rewritten. As I have stated before, I think that the article title should remain as it is. Also, I think we should discuss one thing at a time... so, let's just discuss the infobox. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 06:04, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
One problem with the new title is that it triggers the infobox and the misleading and irrelevant maps. Plus the title does not accurately reflect the content. So I see it as useful to link the discussion to the title. RomaC (talk) 12:26, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

Please continue to discuss until consensus is reached. Neither user should try to impose their view via edits, there have already been multiple reverts. I've tagged the article as subject to ArbCom general sanctions against edit-warring, please read link if you are not familiar with the situation. Also, since this seems to be a dispute betw only 2 users, you have the chance to go to WP:3PO before more folks get involved. Or you can use WP:RFC instead. Good luck. HG | Talk 14:27, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

For image: how about MideastWar.jpg? Hebrew word is "War" Arabic word is "Naqba". --Ravpapa (talk) 14:34, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

Later: forget it, lousy idea. --Ravpapa (talk) 14:43, 9 September 2008 (UTC)


You're right, RomaC. One infobox is enough. The article does not need two infoboxes. I will leave the page as-is regarding the infoboxes. That said, I would really appreciate some help finding images for the lead and for the rest of the article. Also, I think the article title should stay as-is, because changing it to Media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would necessitate the deletion of content. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 04:26, 10 September 2008 (UTC)

Here is a suggestion for an image for the infobox: Bill Clinton, Yitzhak Rabin, Yasser Arafat at the White House 1993-09-13.jpg
I suppose I am showing a bit of POV here, but I think it is about the most neutral image you could put, and it also shows one of the most momentous events in the history of the conflict. --Ravpapa (talk) 05:16, 10 September 2008 (UTC)
No. Too many bitter feelings. I don't know how Palestinians would react to this image, but I know that practically every Jew and Israeli will be reminded of the suicide bombings of the Second Intifada, of the huge contrast between what Yassir Arafat said to the West vs. what he said to his own people, and of the fact that the aura of supporting peace was a complete farce. While the image is certainly historical and iconic, it has little to do with media coverage, and it is only likely to aggravate and make cynical -- not inspire -- those who are familiar with the conflict. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 05:28, 10 September 2008 (UTC)
It seems very dangerous to tag Arafat as something other than a hugely popular, if flawed, ex-leader of his people. Israel has many such people, we don't currently remind the readers of the vast amount of suffering a number of them caused and even Israeli sources tell us about. I won't point out the huge problems in this article since they've been mentioned before - but I'm shocked to see this archiving, leaving just a very few weeks of discussion showing. TalkPages of over 400K elsewhere in the project are perfectly manageable with modern software. I agree with you that the "David and Goliath" image could go back in, since it's an accurate portrayal of the kind of material the reader will find in this article and the UNDUE treatment it will receive. PRtalk 10:55, 11 September 2008 (UTC)
Firstly, I was not suggesting that these statements about Yassir Araft be included in the article, so you can safely ignore them. Secondly, what is wrong with this archiving? This archiving took place in May, and the last comment to be moved into the archive was from February. I would be more concerned if you found this article to be neutral than if you found this article to be biased since, given that you insist that the Battle of Jenin article state that a massacre took place despite HRW and AI findings to the contrary, if you found this article to be neutral, it would imply that it was heavily skewed in favor of the Palestinian point-of-view. No offense intended to you personally, PalestineRemembered. That's just how it is. Hopefully you understand. ← Michael Safyan (talk) 16:27, 11 September 2008 (UTC)
I am sure you're not aiming to personalise this discussion, nor to SOAPBOX. Battle of Jenin is (if readers can imagine it!) an even worse article than this one, with large portions of the excellent RS record kept out of the article by editors not even bothering to conceal the IDONTLIKEIT basis of their objections.
See the Talk at that article - or, if that's too much effort, just consider the very easily checkable fact that the title we're using, "Battle of Jenin", gets 945 hits on Google whereas "Jenin Massacre" gets 17,500. And yet we don't even give the overwhelmingly most popular name an "also known as" mention! (Note, there is a separate discussion as regards whether this was "a massacre" - with even the official Israeli story telling of over 50 dead, it's a laughably pointless discussion. But I'll not go into that - nobody has ever even dared request the article title be changed to the obvious. That's how bad it is!).
Unusually, I cannot see much in the archives of this article that will be hugely missed. It's mostly filled with a drawn out and tendentious argument opposing a change you proposed. However, such archiving is potentially very disruptive - eg the statement "The title of this article is 'Media manipulation, it's not 'Media misled by mistaken apologies'" is still highly relevant. PRtalk