“The challenges facing the state of Israel in the past five years have been considerable. Since the collapse of the Camp David talks with the Palestinians and the outbreak of violence in Israel and the occupied territories, excessive bloodshed has been part of the life of every Israeli and Palestinian. During the past summer Israel also faced an internal rift over Ariel Sharon’s decision to withdraw from the occupied Gaza strip and dismantle the Israeli settlements in it. These posed challenges for the Israeli media too – and the success of the media’s response has been questionable.
“Many journalists and readers watched in despair as the state’s three major newspapers, rightwing Ma’ariv, mainstream Yediot and liberal Ha’aretz, seemed to close ranks with an ultra-patriotic line in 2001. For a very long period, Israel’s contributions to the violence were not mentioned, and the reports of violations of human rights in the re-occupied territories were suppressed by most of the mainstream media, at least during the first two years of the current Palestinian uprising.”
Ariel Sharon and his propaganda team would be pleased.