More Media Hypocrisy: Ferguson and Gaza

Two events that have dominated the news in the past several weeks have been the Israeli assault on Gaza and the mass unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.  What is striking though, is not so much the events in and of themselves, but the way in which the media has covered them.  Media deception and distortion is nothing new, and it has certainly been covered here on RidingTheTiger on more than one occasion, but recent events have given us the opportunity to re-visit the topic first hand.

The way in which the media has covered the police response in Ferguson certainly exposes their malevolent intent to use tragic events to stir up hatred between racial groups and to distract people from atrocities elsewhere in the world, particularly those being committed by Israel.

So far, the Israeli attacks on Gaza has exceeded 2,000 deaths and 10,000 injuries.  A vast majority of these are civilians, and nearly a quarter are children.  In addition to this, a significant number of the dead have been women and elderly individuals which coul hardly have posed a threat to the IDF whatsoever.  The Zionist entity has deliberately bombarded civilian areas and has used horrific weapons against the people of Gaza, destroying entire neighborhoods at a time.  Even the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz recently wrote that “many [shells were fired] into densely populated areas,” and that “military sources admit that since artillery fire is inaccurate, large numbers of Palestinian civilians may have been killed in these incidents”.

Contrast this with what recently transpired recently in Ferguson, where a police officer, having identified Michael Brown as a suspect, approached him, and using standard police procedures attempted to arrest him.  Eyewitnesses reported that Brown reportedly “charged at” Officer Darren Wilson.  Nevertheless, the controlled media, seeing fit to decide a priori, that Michael Brown was a worthy victim, wasted no time in spinning the facts to cast Michael Brown in a sympathetic light, in much the same manner that they made Trayvon Martin out to be an innocent victim. Moreover, the media was quick to blame so-called “White racism” on the events that happened in Ferguson and made no delays in flaming the flames of racial conflict.  Pundits endlessly droned on about embedded racist attitudes among White Americans, even going so far as to say that this was an attack on the African-American community.

Of course, there was comparatively less sympathy for the thousands of innocent civilians in Gaza — a significant proportion of whom were unarmed elderly civilians, women, and children — from the media.  Nor was there any mention of “Israeli racism” when a member of the Israeli Knesset, Ayelet Shaked, called for the slaughter of Palestinian mothers who give birth to “little snakes,” or when an Israeli journalist wrote an article called “When Genocide is Permissible”.  Instead, media viewers in the West were largely besieged by reports about Israel supposedly “defending itself”  from “terrorists” and “missiles”.  In this case, the bias in favor of the Zionist entity has been clear, even though the human toll in Gaza is several orders of magnitude higher than that of Gaza!  

A Palestinian child walks past the ruins of a neighborhood destroyed in the recent Israeli siege of Gaza (credit: Pontiac Tribune)

It’s hard to deny that the response undertaken by the police in Ferguson has been heavy-handed.  It was ridiculous and wrong for police snipers to train their weapons on civilians in Ferguson, but one cannot help but think that it is in some part warranted, as the riots there have spun out of control, and there had been signs of a “pre-planned and coordinated attempt to disrupt the city and launch an advance on the police,” according to the LA Times.  However contemptible the over-reaching state power in Ferguson might be, it will likely be temporary.  This cannot be said of Gaza, who have endured a naval blockade since 2007, with the Zionist entity refusing to allow, at various times, basic goods such as lentils, pasta, tomato paste and juice to enter the besieged region.  The people of Ferguson will likely not have to endure the wholesale bombing of their churches and hospitals at the whims of a much more sophisticated military power.  They will likely not be arbitrary arrested, thrown in prison cells, and tortured, all while the media silently ignores their plight.

The situation in Ferguson is tragic, and certainly is a symptom of some deep class divides in America.  However, if the death of a single person suspected of a crime deserves widespread media condemnation, and rioters can be turned into heros, then certainly the death and maiming of hundreds of children in Gaza at the hands of not just one police officer, but thousands of soldiers, deserves much more condemnation.

Similarly, if the media can find a way to justify the rioting and throwing of Molotov cocktails as merely some sort of righteous moral outrage, pent up frustration at an unjust system, then how much more justified are the people of Palestine in fighting for the very land that has been taken from them?

About Gabriel F. León

Gabriel F. León is a staff writer for RidingTheTiger. He is of Spanish, Italian, and Irish descent and currently resides in Manila, where he is a professor of the English language. He is an avid sport fisherman and cyclist.
  • RayJWilson

    The biggest issue i have with the Ferguson coverage is how the issue became a racial one. Police can oftentimes act as bullies, and harass people but this is something that goes beyond race. I’ve personally had police hit me and put me in cuffs without cause. I did not bait them. I cooperated 100% with them and addressed them as “sir”. They still tried to throw their weight around, knowing they could abuse their position.

    Its understandable to want to answer back or even fight back, but its a lose-lose prospect. At the same time, police generally will harass suspicious looking types. I know white males who are often times stopped by police, and it is because of how they dress and carry themselves. If the media reported this as the police overstepping their boundaries and acting as bullies, it would be one thing, but the media treats this as a racial issue which it is not. If this police officer truly behaved in a fashion that was out of line, he should be punished to the fullest extent of the law. However, this is not going to happen with the politicization of the case. I also find the calls to involve the federal government alarming, simply because it encourages more federal intervention on state issues. The weaker the federal government is in the United States, the healthier the country is as a whole.

    Even if the police officer shot this man in cold blood, nothing justifies the rioting and looting which followed, and a strong police response to this sort of thing is to be expected, regardless of race. Is the prospect of a militarized police force alarming? Of course it is…BUT the situation was volatile and would have called for some kind of heavy police presence regardless.

    The coverage of Israeli attacks on Gaza is also reprehensible but it is encouraging to see how many people across the globe have come out against these attacks, and how Hamas has managed to give Israel more of a fight than they expected. I am especially pleased that Hezbollah and Hamas are reconciled, and that Iran and the DPRK are assisting them here.

    • Nick Bullard

      I didn’t think that anything could be more ridiculous than the original article but this comment takes the cake. What happened/is happening in Ferguson is more than certainly about race. You are either dishonest or ignorant to claim otherwise. How else do you explain the fact that a college-bound black man was shot dead in cold blood by a white police officer, whilst in most encounters between white perps and white officers, the perp gets to walk free? It is the very racist attitudes, ingrained within White America not just in Ferguson that led to Brown getting pumped full of lead, and what is probably just as bad, whites attempting to justify it as “just the cops throwing their weight around”. Nothing could be further from the truth.

  • Nick Bullard

    What an absurd article full of half-truths and full lies. You obviously have no morals or no shame posting race-bating propaganda. If anything you should be defending Israel and sticking up for the victims in Ferguson.

    For one, the people of Ferguson aren’t launching rockets into the next state over, threatening to wipe Americans off the map. The “Palestinians” are. The people of Ferguson aren’t using human shields and digging tunnels to smuggle weapons to use against innocent Jewish children, the “Palestinians” are. Mike Brown was an innocent man – a “gentle Giant” – gunned down in cold blood by a crazed police officer who represents the institutionalized racism in America. The so-called Palestinians are only casualties because HAMAS makes them so; you can’t compare the two. Sounds like you need to get your priorities right but before you do so you might want to get an education first.

  • Hungry_Healthy_Happy

    There has been hardly any coverage of the stuff going on in Ferguson here in the UK.