A recent survey of the British media on the occasion of Israel’s 60th anniversary shows, unsurprisingly, that the British media don’t like Israel very much. This is not a shock to anyone that has ever looked at the BBC website or read the Guardian but there is one particular aspect that I want to discuss:
Eighty-three per cent of articles in all newspapers which took a position on Israel’s stance on peace contained the message that Israel did not seek peace…
Overall, only 6% of articles carried the message that Israel seeks peace. This message was only contained in three articles in The Daily Telegraph, The Independent and The Sunday Telegraph…
Twenty-six per cent of coverage [on the BBC website] contained the message that Israel is not seeking peace.
A neutral observer on Mars, for example, might have trouble understanding this. After all,
- Israel was attacked by the Arab nations in 1948, preempted an imminent attack in 1967, and was attacked again in 1973. The 1948 and 1967 wars were declared by Arab leaders to be genocidal in intent. Insofar as Israel initiated hostilities, it was in response to clear acts of war such as the closing of the straits of Tiran to Israeli shipping in 1956, and the Katyusha attacks on northern Israel by the PLO in Lebanon in 1982.
- In 1978 Israel agreed to return the entire Sinai peninsula to Egypt in the interest of peace, giving up a huge strategic advantage and a large amount of natural resources, including oil. In return, she received a ‘cold peace’ — really just an extended truce.
- In 1993, Israel signed the Oslo agreement with terrorist Yasser Arafat in the interest of peace. In return, she received several years of escalating terrorism against her population, culminating in Arafat’s rejection of the Clinton-Barak proposals and the murderous second intifada. Israel offered to transfer 97% of the West Bank and all of Gaza to the Palestinian authority, give up control of Judaism’s holiest sites in east Jerusalem, etc., all for peace.
- Israel withdrew from south Lebanon in 2000 in the interest of peace and received in return the Hezbollah buildup which led to the 2006 war.
- In the interest of peace, Israel completely withdrew from Gaza in 2005, at great cost to uprooted residents — who still have not received just compensation as promised — and to the nation. In return, she received a Hamas terrorist state, thousands of rockets fired on her population, cross-border attacks, and will soon have to fight another war.
- Israel is presently negotiating with the Palestinian Authority for what may be a ‘do-over’ of the Clinton-Barak proposal, in the face of clear evidence that neither Fatah nor Hamas is prepared to accept the existence of a Jewish state of any size.
- Most of the Arab nations, as well as the Palestinian Fatah and Hamas movements, have never stopped the continuous barrage of anti-Israel and antisemitic propaganda and incitement in their official media, while the Israeli government always stresses its desire to live in peace with its neighbors.
Considering all this, you would think that the Arabs are the ones who are uninterested in peace, and that Israel has been, over and over, prepared to make great sacrifices for peace — even after they’ve been kicked in the teeth in response.
Yes, you would think this. But you are not smoking the same stuff as the British media.