France 5 from 24

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France 24 (pronounced France vingt-quatre [fʁɑ̃s vɛ̃ katʁ] on all French, English and Arabic editions) is an international news and current affairs television channel based in Paris. Its stated mission is to cover international current events from a French perspective and to convey French values throughout the world.

The channel has since 2008 been wholly owned by the French government (via its holding company, l’Audiovisuel extérieur de la France (AEF)), having acquired the remaining shares held by its former partners Groupe TF1 and France Télévisions. Its budget is approximately €100 million per year.

So how are they doing when it comes to reporting the current violence in Israel? Malheureusement – They should be better.

At this point I’ll drop my Google translator and stick to English – and the English edition, although comparing the French, English and Arabic editions could be very interesting. I have long held the view that media networks who either broadcast in Arabic (as does France 24) or who profitably sell to Arab stations (as does the BBC, Reuters, AP) become biased to the Arab case as that leads to greater viewer support and sales.

France 24 (15 Oct 2015)Five errors/omissions of fact in France 24 latest coverage.

Knife attacks continue as Israelis seal off East Jerusalem

  1. Using the word ‘revered’ when referring to Judaism’s attitude to the Temple Mount diminishes its importance especially with compared with the statement that Jerusalem is the ‘third’ holiest site in Islam. The Temple Mount is the holiest site in Judaism.
    One should ask if Jerusalem is the third holiest for Muslims, what is the fourth?
  2. Israel captured the city from the Jordanians not the Palestinians in 1967 as could be implied from the report.
    In 1948 the then Transjordanian army expelled all Jewish inhabitants from the city. One who is familiar with the history of the site should also ask why during the 19 years of Jordanian occupation and annexation, which also was not recognised by the world, did not one Muslim head of state consider the city or its mosques important enough to visit?
  3. It is false to say Arab residents can not vote. They chose not to register often under great pressure from the PLO and Hamas. Some Arab residents take citizenship and do, in fact vote.
  4. While some Palestinians have lost residency rights, the numbers of Arabs in Jerusalem have sky rocketted. Increasing from 54,963 in 1967 to 281,000 in 2011.
  5. It is not simply right wing elements in Netanyahu’s government who consider Jerusalem vital. That feeling is virtually universal among the Jews. Even those who support a Palestinian state do not concede on Jerusalem.

Let’s add a sixth omission.

France 24 interviews an Arab. Where was the balancing interview with a Jewish resident?

Was the anonymous Arab a resident, a passer-by, a shop owner, a P.A. or Hamas spokesman? We will never know. He recites the usual boilerplate which is acceptable because that is his opinion, but is never cross examined by France 24.

The first question I would ask would be, what would happen if Israel were to withdraw?

I would by asking would there be peace or would he recommend recovering the rest of Israel? What would happen to the Jewish residents of across the Green Line Jerusalem? Would he allow access to Jewish holy sites from which they were excluded 1948–1967? Would Jewish sites renovated since 1967 be protected.

Finally what concessions does he want for the P.A.?

A new disaffected generation in the West BankA-new-generation

Let’s ignore the dissonance between the headline and the content of this clip. Chris Moore acknowledges the Israel Police claim that most come stabbers come from East Jerusalem and not from the Palestine Authority and says nothing about why this generation of thugs/terrorists/fighters is any different from any other.

Let’s concentrate on his Mahmoud Abbas remarks. If Abbas is calling for non-violent dissent, today,  what does Moore understand by yesterday’s false accusation that an innocent boy killed in ‘cold blood’? The young terrorist had stabbed a young Israeli and rather than executed he was alive and being treated in an Israeli hospital. How does he consider Abbas’s “We will continue our national struggle, which is based on self-defense” as a call for non-violent protest?

Indeed why does France 24 ignore incitement through the P.A. controlled media and from organisations which actually do listen to President Abbas?

Extra credit

Daniel Pipes has written much about the Muslim claim to Jerusalem and is essential reading for those discussing them.

About David Guy

B.A./B.C.A. (Communication and Media Arts) University of Wollongong, AUSTRALIA M.A. in Government (Diplomacy and Conflict Studies) Inter Disciplinary Center, Herzliya, ISRAEL Twitter @5MFI
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