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World Economic Forum 2007 - Abbas

© World Economic Forum

Wikipedia is Israel advocacy

Five Minutes for Israel added a chapter on corruption to Mahmoud Abbas’s Wikipedia entry. I was looking to confirm a date and realised that essential directive: Follow the money was missing.

Now Abbas’s Wikipedia entry mentions general accusations of embezzling public funds; corruption accusations against Abbas’s mentor and successor in the position of President of the Palestinian Authority, Yasser Arafat; specific allegations about the net worth of Abbas ($100 million – think how many schools that would build?), accusations against his sons and the libel action Yasser Abbas has commenced to defend his and presumably his father and brother’s, ahem, ‘reputation’. Puts the PA crying poor in a different light.

Was it an oversight or was it a deliberate attempt to launder Abbas? I can’t say but if the chapter is deleted or significantly altered I would lean to the second explanation.

Does it matter? I believe it does. Despite what my university lecturers said about Wikipedia being unacceptable as a reference for many and that includes journalists a Wiki entry is the primary source of information. They don’t look further.

We recommend that Israel advocates edit Wikipedia when similar errors of fact or omission appear. Keep within the rules of the Wikipedia community, stay polite and back up what you write with plenty of references.

“If I am not for myself, who will be for me?
But if I am only for myself, who am I?
If not now, when?”

Ethics of the Fathers, 1:14

 Extra credit

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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