Violence between Israel and Palestinian militants is worsening. American coverage of the conflict is all about America.
The Israeli military and Palestinian militants continue to trade rocket attacks and violence as accusations fly and outside observers are urging for calm and a cessation of violence.
- Hamas called for a “full-scale Palestinian intifada” across Israel, the last of which last five years, while Israel’s ambassador to the United States blasted the Biden administration’s call for peace, saying it’s inappropriate to compare “Israeli leaders who call for calm alongside instigators and terrorist organizations”.
- Despite the apparent rebuke by Israel, Biden administration spokesperson Jen Psaki declared the President’s “unwavering support for Israel’s security and its legitimate right to defend itself” as the administration is finalizing plans to dispatch an envoy to the region to assist in “de-escalation.”
- Local politics has been affected by the conflict as leading candidate for mayor of New York City Andrew Yang was the target of criticism by left-wing American politicians for his unabashed support for Israel.
- Despite running an AP wire report, Huffington Post fully weaponized their headline with “Israel Escalates Attack on Gaza, No End In Sight”, framing it in such a way to suggest Israel is solely to blame for the violence.
- CNN’s analysis of the situation puts into focus Biden’s broader foreign policy agenda, suggesting he had hoped to turn focus away from the Middle East, while subtly noting that President Trump’s goals of normalizing relations between Israel and Muslim or Arab states were working.
- The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin (who was a conservative until the Trump era, at which point she turned her back on her political principles because “orange man bad”) gives a sympathetic view of Biden’s predicament, saying he “seeks to tackle our greatest international challenges” but is being dragged into the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
- The Jerusalem Post interviewed an academic and Middle East policy expert who said the Biden administration’s reversals of some Trump-era policies bear a little bit of responsibility for the most recent conflagration between Israel and Palestinian terrorists.
- RedState directed its ire at David Frum, writer for The Atlantic, who took to Twitter and snidely blamed President Trump and Jared Kushner (who negotiated legitimately historic agreements between Israel and several former antagonists) for the recent violence, while explaining to Frum that none of these peace deals involved the Palestinian people or its corrupt leadership.
- Newsmax highlighted the bipartisan criticism Biden is facing over his administration’s approach to the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict, noting statements from Republican politicians blasting him for not being sufficiently supportive of Israel and “Squad” member Rep. Rashida Tlaib saying the United States is abetting Israel in “human rights violations.”
As highlighted by John Podhoretz of Commentary Magazine and its podcast, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas recently canceled elections. Podhoretz claims this is because Abbas would likely have lost to Hamas and the recent violence is a smokescreen to avoid outrage over the canceled elections.
Podhoretz’s comments highlight an oft-overlooked aspect to American coverage of international news: making it all about America. The right is blaming Biden, the left is blaming Trump, but there are unreported (or underreported) local aspects that have far more influence and responsibility in current events that have nothing to do with American politics.
© Dallas Gerber, 2021