The New York Times adds more shameful reporting about Palestine to its abysmal record.
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Jeremy R. Hammond
Dear Reader,

NYT peddles Joan Peters hoaxTwo weeks ago, the New York Times had a piece about the death of Joan Peters, author of the book From Time Immemorial, which perpetrated the hoax that when the Zionists arrived there to establish their "Jewish state", Palestine was an uninhabited land, and that the Arabs migrated there only after the Zionists had made the desert bloom. But instead of informing readers about the truth, the Times itself decided just to re-peddle the hoax.

Here's the letter I wrote to the editor:

From: "Jeremy R. Hammond" <jeremy@foreignpolicyjournal.com>
Date:01/13/2015 10:37 AM (GMT-05:00)
To: letters@nytimes.com
Subject: Like Joan Peters, Daniel E. Slotnik Misleads

To the Editor:

In his piece on the death of Joan Peters, author of From Time Immemorial, Daniel E. Slotnik writes that historical documents show “that Arab settlers had flocked to Palestine beginning in the late 1800s”; then Mr. Slotnik describes the displacement of Arabs from Palestine in 1948 as a “widely accepted narrative” and quotes Hebrew University professor Yehoshua Porath characterizing it as a “myth”.

It is a disservice to Times readers to leave them with the false impression that the increase in the Arab population was due to immigration when in fact, as noted by the UN Special Committee on Palestine, it was “almost entirely” due to natural increase (an observation also made by the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry). And it is a well-documented and uncontroversial historical fact that three-quarters of a million Palestinians fled or were driven from their homes—never allowed to return—during what Israelis call their “War of Independence” and Palestinians call “the Nakba”—their “catastrophe”.

A correction is warranted to properly inform readers of the truth.

Sincerely,

Jeremy R. Hammond

Of course, I did not expect my letter to be selected for publication, and the Times did not surprise me.

I provide a lot more examples of the Times' absolutely disgraceful reporting on the topic of Palestine in my forthcoming book, Obstacle to Peace: The US Role in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. I show what and how the Times has reported over the years and then systematically dismantle their propaganda. I take down Ethan Bronner, Isabel Kershnher, and the entire editorial board.

If you want to better understand how the US mainstream media serve to manufacture consent for the US government's policy of supporting Israel's crimes against the Palestinians, you won't want to miss it.

Here's a brief example from Chapter 2, "Operation Cast Lead", one of many takedowns of Ethan Bronner's reporting.

From inside Gaza, Taghreed El-Khodary reported in the New York Times that large numbers of Palestinians were “fleeing their homes for makeshift shelters in schools, office buildings and a park as the Israeli Army continues to press its military campaign deeper into Gaza City.” The IDF continued to drop leaflets warning families to evacuate, but as the killing of over forty people at the UN school in Jabaliya had demonstrated, “the shelters are not completely safe”. Among the reasons Palestinians were fleeing was the IDF’s use of “a noxious substance that burns skin and makes it hard to breathe.” Reporters in Gaza City were shown the source of this substance, a “metal casing with the identifying number M825A1”, a white phosphorus munition. The article concluded:

When exposed to air, it ignites, experts say, and if packed into an artillery shell, it can rain down flaming chemicals that cling to anything they touch. Luay Suboh, 10, from Beit Lahiya, lost his eyesight and some skin on his face Saturday when, his mother said, a fiery substance clung to him as he darted home from a shelter where his family was staying to pick up clothes. The substance smelled like burned trash, said Ms. Jaawanah, the mother who fled her home in Zeytoun, who had experienced it too. She had no affection for Hamas, but her sufferings were changing that. “Do you think I’m against them firing rockets now?” she asked, referring to Hamas. “No. I was against it before. Not anymore.”

The M825A1 munitions were, of course, supplied to Israel by the US—a fact that the Times instructively declined to inform its readers.

More proof still was needed, however, for El-Khodary’s colleague Ethan Bronner to report that Israel was using white phosphorus. Two days later, in the only other mention of it by the Times throughout Israel’s entire military operation, he wrote that ICRC President Jakob Kellenberger had seen “no evidence of the use of white phosphorus” during a visit to Gaza. “Palestinians say Israel is using it in Gaza,” Bronner added. Thus, all of the relevant facts Bronner saw fit to sweep down the memory hole, to be replaced by a meaningless citation of one individual who happened not to have personally witnessed white phosphorus being used, along with the characterization of its use by Israel as nothing more than a claim made by Palestinians. The repeated statements from human rights organizations like Human Rights Watch and B’Tselem condemning its documented use, the photographic proof published in media outlets around the world, and even his own colleague’s on-the-ground reporting from Gaza of the finding of shells marked “M825A1”—none of this did Bronner consider relevant to inform his readers in what can only have been a deliberate attempt to obfuscate the truth.
And there are plenty more takedowns in the book. Indeed, I have an entire section under the subheading "The Bias of the New York Times" in Chapter 9, "The Statehood Ploy".

I'm just putting the final touches on the manuscript, but once that's done, there is still a lot of work to be done before publication. I'll be sending the manuscript out for blurbs, as well as a foreword. While that is happening, I'll be busy on the publishing side of things. Creating the index, registering ISBNs, creating barcodes... All kinds of fun stuff one gets to learn all about when starting one's own publishing company -- a full time job in itself, on top of the full time job of writing the book. 

Anyhow, that's where the book's at, so please stay tuned!

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