Other War: Israelis, Palestinians and the Struggle for Media Supremacy

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Since its founding, Israel has become legendary for winning wars waged against it by much larger armies. But those were "conventional" conflicts where uniformed soldiers fought on clearly delineated fronts, using tanks, aircraft and artillery. Israel has not fared so well in the new wars of the twenty-first century, where key battles are fought on editorial pages and television screens, and especially on the internet, where photos from the combat zone can ricochet around the world minutes after being snapped. To...
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Hardcover w / dustjacket. NEW. DJ is fine/new. "American History and Political Philosophy 20140927" Stored in sealed plastic protection. No pricing stickers. No remainder mark. No ... previous owner's markings. In the event of a problem we guarantee full refund. 2005. Hardcover w / dustjacket. Read more Show Less

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Overview


Since its founding, Israel has become legendary for winning wars waged against it by much larger armies. But those were "conventional" conflicts where uniformed soldiers fought on clearly delineated fronts, using tanks, aircraft and artillery. Israel has not fared so well in the new wars of the twenty-first century, where key battles are fought on editorial pages and television screens, and especially on the internet, where photos from the combat zone can ricochet around the world minutes after being snapped. To understand why Israel has floundered on this new battlefield, Stephanie Gutmann, who lived in the Middle East as a teenager, returned to Jerusalem and the West Bank during the second intifada to observe modern news-gathering up close. In THE OTHER WAR she documents how regional political and military realities are dependent on a constantly shifting cast of international journalists on the prowl for "good pictures" (their motto: "if it bleeds, it leads") or career-making scoops, and sometimes guided by hardened anti-Israel ideology. In the midst of suicide bombings and armed response, Gutmann watched as the region and its people — Israeli and Palestinian alike — became cardboard cutouts in dramas predetermined by ratings-obsessed editors continents away. Gutmann introduces us to key players in the daily battles for headline supremacy: the mercenary freelance photographers who hawk their bloodiest pictures to the highest bidder; the TV "parachuters" who drop in on the unfolding Mideast tragedy to get their "face time" before flying off to the next international hotspot; the Palestinian Authority spinmeisters; the politically connected, media-savvy "fixers" whose translation services are not typically neutral. We also meet some of those in the trenches, people like Daniel Seaman, beleaguered director of Israel's Government Press Office; and Palestinian reporter Khaled Abu Toameh, who endeavors to do comprehensive reporting about a regime, the Palestinian Authority, that often silences critics brutally. Traveling into the disputed territories herself, Gutmann reconstructs the battle for Jenin, the death of the teenage martyr Mohammed al-Dura, and other climactic moments in the struggle for the world's hearts and minds. We learn! from her absorbing insider's account that there is a reality in this region never touched by the international press corps, and that as in other wars, truth is indeed the first casualty.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781893554948
  • Publisher: Encounter Books
  • Publication date: 10/28/2005
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.10 (d)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2006

    Controlling the public's perception. Required reading.

    This extremely relevant and well written study subjects the media coverage of the Palestinian/Arab-Israeli conflict to a meticulous scrutiny. Providing a behind the scenes perspective & an abundance of examples, the writer documents what she describes as the distorted, inaccurate and egregious bias against Israel throughout the realm of the mainstream media. The book reveals how so many journalists, photographers and editors are sometimes guided by what is cited as a 'hardened anti-Israel ideology' often selectively omitting pivotal factors thus portraying a false image of the reality on the ground. The writer emphasising the public now need to become what she calls 'experts at inspecting, analysing and demystifying the news product' with a need to know who/what is behind the source providing the news itself. One of the reasons for writing this book being described as the fact that 'pictures do lie' and that behind every picture is a long story & a list of people who decide how and in what manner that particular picture is presented, as the full background is rarely depicted. Throughout the book the reader is confronted with the fact that the news media is the world's spokesman and through controlling the information provided to the public and the manner in which it is presented, subsequently controls the public's judgement and perception. The writer strives to underscore how those within media are very much aware of their enormous power to manipulate and use their power & platform to their full advantage, with most of the world, allegedly having yet to learn that the media is NOT a non-profit organisation working for the betterment of the human race. To the contrary, the book reveals how the media competes fiercely for elite positions, career making scoops and headline supremacy. Many instances are shown which reveal that, purportedly, the media will readily falsify, fake and fabricate news to achieve it's own ends, staging events for the benefit of the ever present cameras. The cover of the book itself displayed scores of media photographers lined to obtain a controlled/staged photograph of a Palestinian throwing a missile. The writer illustrates how that in the early years of the Palestinian intifada about 95% of the TV pictures on satellite were supplied by Palestinian film crews and that many journalists have shown themselves unwilling to attribute any blame to the Palestinian side as such would allegedly endanger their physical welfare and prevent future access to essential sources/areas upon which the news entities utterly rely for their coverage. Other issues examined include Jenin, the Ramallah lynching of Israeli soldiers and Palestinian celebrations after the September 11th attacks on the US where some 3,000 Palestinians were filmed rejoicing in the streets in the wake of the murders of so many innocent people. The study describes how the footage of such events was destroyed due to the fact that a photographer was then allegedly held in the office of the Governor of Nablus with gunmen holding the barrels of their weapons held against his skull. A demand then being made that if the video of the celebrations was not destroyed, the photographer would be executed. The film was subsequently destroyed. (Page 152) Another issue studied is the visit of Ariel Sharon to Jerusalem's Temple Mount which media sources have blamed for the outbreak of the second intifada. Detailed analysis in the study reveals that this was anything but the case and that the Palestinian violence had already been pre-planned. The book's evaluation disclosing that Sharon's visit to Judaism's most holy site was agreed beforehand with the Palestinian authorities and that Sharon made no attempt to even enter Islamic holy sites. The writer pulls no punches in apportioning considerable blame on the part of the Israeli government for not making their own case known on innumerable occasions. The book also

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