Backspin articles

Bin Laden reclaiming Occupied Spain

An article that appeared in The Age (Australia) and London’s Daily Telegraph addresses radical Islam’s ‘claim’ to Spain: Thursday’s bombings have raised an uncomfortable question for Spaniards. Is Osama bin Laden dreaming of exacting revenge for the loss of Al-Andalus, the ancient Moorish kingdom in Iberia? A group said to be close to bin Laden’s

Terror in Madrid

We join the Spanish community in mourning those killed and injured by the brutal attack on Thursday. It’s remarkable that the major news agencies continue to refer to it as a ‘terrorist attack’ (which of course it was), though these same agencies refuse to refer to Palestinian attacks on packed Israeli public transportation as ‘terror’:

Selective coverage at Wash Post

David Gerstman notes that the Washington Post made a big deal of Israeli Chief of Staff Yaalon’s statement in November that Israel should loosen up restrictions on Palestinians, but when Yaalon said this week that a rapid IDF pullout from Gaza could be intensifying Palestinian terror, the Wash Post chose not to report it at

Communique on biased kids’ media

We’ve just released a new communique on biased descriptions of the Mideast conflict in children’s media –BBC and Knight Ridder. To view it, click here. To receive HonestReporting communiques in your inbox, subscribe above.

Worth Reading Today

- Commentary by the Israeli Consul to New England in The Christian Science Monitor: As part of an effort to restore diplomatic ties with Egypt, Tehran’s city council recently agreed to rename Khaled Islambouli Avenue, a street named after the assassin of former Egyptian Prime Minister and peacemaker, Anwar Sadat. On one hand, this is


Israeli Prime Minister Sharon is regularly branded a ‘hardliner’ by the English-language press (even after showing considerable flexibility on, for example, the proposed Gaza withdrawl). It’s telling to note where else in the world the major agencies use the term ‘hardliners’: – In Yemen, to describe fugitive terrorists, including al Qaeda operatives. – In Iran,

Hamas makes global ties

Don’t miss the significance of this news item: Hamas just announced that they were responsible for the April, 2003 bombing of Mike’s Place in Tel Aviv: The Hamas declaration of responsibility for the event was at least externally similar to declarations of responsibility claimed by the organization for other attacks. But the content reveals what

Failed Attack?

(Via Sharkblog) A headline from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation: Failed suicide attack claims six Palestinian lives No Jews were killed, but four of the dead guys were trying to commit suicide. They shouldn’t be written off as a total failure.

Worth Reading Today

- Chicago Tribune (req. reg.) reader’s rep Don Wycliff comments on the paper’s Uli Schmetzer debacle and the role of web-based media watchdogs: It could be that technology already is providing us a kind of ultimate check in the form of the Internet. In the past, national and foreign correspondents could roam the country or

Erekat double-talk

Palestinian spokesman Saeb Erekat should long ago have been discredited by news agencies. Erekat, after all, is the one who claimed that over 500 Palestinians were ‘massacred’ by Israel in Jenin, April 2002. This, of course, was utterly false, yet the media continue to lend credence to Erekat’s statements. Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook of