Israel Daily News Stream 04/17/2012

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Iranian Atomic Urgency

Reacting to Laura Rozen‘s inside coverage of the nuclear talks, Lenny Ben-David says Catherine Ashton gave Iran some freebies.

CNN‘s Kevin Flower pounds the pavement at Jerusalem’s Mahane Yehuda market, getting man-in-the-shuk comments about Western nuclear talks with Iran.

In a WSJ op-ed (via Google News) German editor Josef Joffe deconstructs Gunter Grass.

Arab Spring Winter

Latest reports put the death toll from Syria’s civil war at more than 11,100.

Haaretz: Jordan’s parliament took the first steps towards banning the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party.

Ain’t this sweet? Julian Assange’s talk show on Russia Today premieres tomorrow. The guest? Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah. He tells Assange he supports Assad because the regime is more supportive of the Palestinians:

Nasrallah, a freedom fighter to millions though a terrorist to the US, Israel, Canada and the Netherlands, says Assad’s regime “served the Palestinian cause very well.”

This is why Hezbollah supported the so-called Arab Spring in Tunisia, Yemen, Egypt and elsewhere, but when it came to Syria, Hezbollah urged the opposition to engage in dialog with President Bashar al-Assad.

Mustafa Liddawi, the former Hamas official abducted in Damascus, was released. Maan News writes:

It was not immediately clear who was behind his capture.

His family said he was released late Monday night. They told Ma’an he was tortured during interrogation and taken to a hospital in al-Yarmouk.

Rest O’ the Roundup

The Columbia Journalism Review gave a soapbox to an Iranian-born journalist who takes the CJR and Justin Martin to task over Martin’s flawed “jailed journalists per capita” statistic.

Allowing Mr. Martin to skewer the Jewish state using faulty statistics undermines CJR’s role as professional watchdog. But the harm done extends beyond journalistic standards. The ultimate impact of pieces like Mr. Martin’s is a softening of the reading public’s moral intuitions and sensitivities. By placing Israel on the same plane as the likes of Iran and Syria, Mr. Martin minimized the threats faced by journalists working under genuine authoritarianisms—not to mention the broader human rights catastrophes underway in these societies.

In Iran, where I was born and spent the first half of my life, journalists and writers are persecuted on a nearly industrial scale; dozens of outlets are shuttered every year. Just last month, the Committee to Protect Journalists reported, Nazanin Khosravani, a reformist writer, began serving a six-year sentence in Tehran’s nightmarish Evin prison for the crime of “propagating against the system”—a charge unheard of in Israel. But why should Western audiences care about these very real injustices when seemingly authoritative “statistics” show the West—including Israel and the U.S.—to be equally authoritarian? Mr. Martin thus challenged the common moral sense of his readers, distorting conclusions they would otherwise draw from straightforward reporting on the realities of practicing journalism in free and unfree societies. Will he earn a dart from CJR anytime soon?

Some top Washington police officials were inspired after visiting their Israeli counterparts to learn and share ideas. AP writes:

Groomes in particular said she was struck by how quickly Israel, which has a national police force, can respond to a disaster and said the public there seems more accepting of the prevalent security precautions that are in place.

Huffington Post Pulitzer winner: “You can do great journalism on any platform.” FYI, here’s a list of all the 2012 Pulitzer winners.

For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.

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