Monday, September 18, 2006

We're Not Listening Any More But The Band Plays On

Of course, most conservatives are well aware of the mischief caused by Reuters, the Associated Press and by the BBC especially in their reporting of the recent Israeli-Hezbollah conflict. Doctored photographs, staged scenes, fake ambulance damage and outright lies were common fodder for these three outfits. On Sunday, two other examples were caught by sharp-eyed bloggers whose senses were heightened by the Dan Rather forged documents that bloggers were the first to spot.

September 17, 2006
Apologize for What?
By David Warren

The BBC appears to have been quickest off the mark, to send around the world in many languages, including Arabic, Turkish, Farsi, Urdu, and Malay, word that the Pope had insulted the Prophet of Islam, during an address in Bavaria.

He had not, of course. Pope Benedict XVI had instead quoted, carefully and without approval, remarks by the learned 14th-century Byzantine emperor, Manuel II Palaeologus, in debate with a 14th-century learned Persian. He was trying to provide a little historical depth to present controversies about the meaning of "jihad", and his very point was that on their own respective theological terms, Muslims and Christians were bound to talk past each other today, in the same ways as they did seven centuries ago. But in the most conscientious media reports I have seen, even the Byzantine emperor is quoted out of context.

Here is the point Pope Benedict was making, also in the words of that learned Byzantine emperor, speaking on the eve of one of the many sieges of Constantinople:

"God is not pleased by blood, and not acting reasonably is contrary to God's nature. Faith is born of the soul, not the body. Whoever would lead someone to faith needs the ability to speak well and to reason properly, without violence and threats. ... To convince a reasonable soul, one does not need a strong arm, or weapons of any kind, or any other means of threatening a person with death."…

This was not a crude anti-Islamic polemic; nor was it so at the end of the 14th century. It was a quest for peace and amity, then as now.

By turning the story back-to-front, so that what's promised in the lead -- a crude attack on Islam -- is quietly withdrawn much later in the text, the BBC journalists were having a little mischief. The kind of mischief that is likely to end with Catholic priests and faithful butchered around the Muslim world. Either the writers were so jaw-droppingly ignorant, they did not realize this is what they were abetting (always a possibility with the postmodern journalist), or the malice was intended. There is no third possibility.

From the start, the BBC's reports said the Pope would "face criticism from Muslim leaders" -- in the present tense. This is a form of dishonesty that has become common in journalism today. The flagrantly biased reporter, feigning objectivity, spices his story by just guessing what a man's enemies will say, even before they have spoken.

While I don't mean to pick especially on the BBC, when other mainstream media are often as culpable, they are worth singling out here to show the amount of sheer, murderous evil of which this taxpayer-funded network is capable. As I write, the BBC website has just posted an "interpretive" piece by their religious affairs correspondent, one Rahul Tandon. He does an unconscionably brief review of publicity the Pope had previously received, as Cardinal Ratzinger and since his elevation, touching upon Islam. By extracting the context from each item on his list, Mr Tandon creates the utterly false impression that the Pope is, as the media persistently dub him, "God's Rottweiler", with an especially vicious hate-on for Muslims.

Now watch Mr Tandon pose as the objective reporter:
"However, since his consecration, Pope Benedict has surprised many with his attempts to improve dialogue with the Muslim world. He is due to visit Turkey in November as part of that process.

"But there have been signs of his earlier views."

Note the dripping condescension in the trailing line, as if the Pope is barely able to contain himself. But more significantly, note the implicit assertion that the views of Cardinal Ratzinger changed when he became Pope. This is not true, but insinuated as if it were fact.

From now on, the reporting will be about the Muslim rage, and whether the Vatican has apologized yet. That is the "drama" the media will seek to capture -- the drama of the cockfight -- because they know no better kind. That the Pope said nothing intrinsically objectionable will be overlooked, in deference to the Muslim rage, just as the media hid the Danish cartoons from their viewers -- preventing them from discovering how mild they were. David Warren


On another front, the AP first used the following headline in reporting the results of a new poll:
"GOP Gains Ground In Battle For Congress"

In the body of their article the AP had this to say:

“Seven weeks before congressional elections, the poll of 1,501 adults conducted Monday through Wednesday showed that the GOP offensive has helped Republicans gain some ground.

Bush's public support has increased -- 40 percent of likely voters approve of his job performance -- and Republicans have erased an advantage Democrats had last month on the measure of which party would best protect the country. Voters now view Republicans and Democrats as equally capable.”

Perhaps someone pointed out to the AP that this did not fit current Democrat talking points, because they later changed the headline to read:

"Polls Shows GOP Not Making Its Case"

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At 5:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This Pope has nothing to apologize for. He was only quoting someone who lived 100s of years ago, but these murderous extreme Islamists don't need a reason to go out and kill a Catholic Nun. They would have done it anyway just for the sake of
satisfying their lust for blood. Taking words out context is only an excuse to justify killing someone to get the rest of the world to kiss their butts. Until the moderate Muslims start speaking out against these killers, I have no respect for any of them, and they will get no sympathy from me.


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