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June 13, 2013

Where's the Coverage? Israel to Build Housing in West Bank...for Palestinians

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The Los Angeles Times just published an article, “Israel advancing large settlement construction plan”:

As U.S. Secretary of State John F. Kerry is poised to return to the region, Israel is advancing a plan for a large-scale expansion of a West Bank settlement, according to Israeli media reports.

Plans for more than 600 housing units in the settlement of Itamar were recently submitted to authorities, the reports say. If completed, the new construction would significantly expand the settlement, which currently has about 1,200 residents.

If 600 housing units for Jews is worthy of coverage, why not even a mention of a plan to build nearly twice as many homes for Palestinian Arabs? Neither the LA Times nor any other major news outlet has covered an Israeli plan to develop hundreds of housing units for Arabs, on Israeli-controlled land in Area C. And it would not have taken a lot of investigating to find out about it. The Jerusalem Post reported last month, “J'lem plans 1,140 Palestinian homes near Jericho”:

The Civil Administration of Judea and Samaria has deposited a plan for a large project of 1,140 Palestinian homes on Israeli state land in Area C of the West Bank near the city of Jericho.

The project, on 1,800 dunams of land, would provide a legal housing solution for Palestinians in that area living in illegal homes and unauthorized villages that are not properly connected to utilities, according to the civil administration.

It added that the plan was done “with the understanding” of the heads of the Palestinian villages and that the Palestinian Authority had also been involved in the plans.

Only the Israeli and Jewish press has covered this story.

In fact, at the very same time this story ran in the Jerusalem Post, The Economist published an error-ridden, biased article not only ignoring this plan for Israeli construction of legal housing for Palestinian Arabs on Israeli-controlled land but completely mischaracterizing the housing situation in Area C, casting a Palestinian attempt to take over land by erecting illegal structures as an Israeli land grab. Further, the British magazine refused even to correct in print the story’s errors and editors scoffed at outraged readers, flouting the “Editors’ Code of Practice”.

Ari Briggs, the director of Regavim, a non-governmental organization (NGO) that tracks illegal Arab building, told JNS.org, “If a Jewish family puts up a patio on a house—anywhere in Israel—without a permit, municipal authorities can come into your house and get you to tear it down.”

And if the patio is in a Jewish town in Israeli-controlled Area C, the Los Angeles Times, The Economist, and most other Western news outlets will report it; the United Nations, the European Union and dozens of NGOs will rush to condemn it. But when Israel plans to build hundreds of homes for Palestinian Arabs… Not a word. Silence. Where’s the coverage?

Posted by SC at June 13, 2013 07:14 AM

Comments


No offense. But the Palestinians would do
well to build their own homes, - especially
with Kerry's generous endowment of funds for
them.

Posted by: Selma Soss at June 13, 2013 11:15 AM

It's time that Israel's efforts to build homes
or help Palestinian in any way was given
deserving coverage. It is a reward in the peace
process.

Posted by: Selma Soss at June 13, 2013 02:26 PM

So, did you send this announcement to the LA Times in response to their recent article? How about releases to the New York Times, etc., etc.
Doesn't the Israeli government send out official releases of this kind?
Same thing with the Syrians Israel is treating. Does anyone tell the big news outlets of these occurences?

Posted by: brynababy at June 13, 2013 03:06 PM

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