Israel continues its genocide thanks to British media complicity

  • Post last modified:March 8, 2024
  • Reading time:5 mins read

The Centre for Media Monitoring has released a report on corporate media coverage of Israel’s genocide. The case study shows “overwhelming” bias in favour of the Israeli settler colonial state. As such, the UK media, which the report focuses on, is manufacturing consent for the mass slaughter of Palestinians. This includes the BBC.

Covering for Israel’s colonialism

The content analysis shows the mainstream media removes context to make it seem like Israel is not the aggressor state. This framing erases the Palestinian struggle. Israel has occupied Palestine since 1948 through displacement and mass slaughter of its people. Israel has colonised more and more of Palestine since then.

But Israel and its partners make it seem like it’s Israel that is on the defensive. For instance, the Al Jazeera English channel had more mentions of ‘occupied territories’ than all UK and US news channels combined. The report also found that 76% of online articles packaged coverage as an ‘Israel- Hamas war’.

Yet the violence did not start on 7 October. Still, the corporate media reports as if it did, covering for the colonial project. Most TV news channels repeated Israel’s ‘right to defend itself’, overshadowing Palestinian rights by a five to one ratio.

Devaluing Palestinian life

The report also analysed language used. When broadcast uses emotive language, it’s 11 times more likely to refer to Israeli deaths as victims of attacks than Palestinians. And in TV clips, the media uses two out of three emotive terms for Israeli deaths, compared to one in 10 for Palestinian deaths.

The bias on language pervades corporate online reporting as well, where emotive terms were four times more prevalent when describing Israeli victims.

The content analysis looks at coverage from 7 October, when the violence escalated, to 7 November. In only the first week of that month Israel killed at least 720 Palestinian children. The widespread biased media reporting provided the setting for the in-motion genocide where Israel has now killed over 30,000 Palestinians.

Repeating Israeli military propaganda

The reports findings on unverified claims compound the corporate media complicity in the ongoing genocide. There were 361 news clips where the analysis found the mass media amplifying the ‘Hamas beheaded babies’ story as if it was fact.

Yet there was no evidence for the claim and it became clear it was atrocity propaganda. This type of reporting helps cover for the onslaught against the Palestinians and the theft of their land.

Israel’s genocidal language unchallenged

The report also looked at specific incidents of genocidal collaboration.

Multiple times on BBC Newsnight the presenter allowed genocidal language to go unchallenged. Appearing on the show, Israeli politician Danny Danon referred to slaughtered Palestinians as “barbaric animals”. Former Israeli ambassador Dan Gillerman also called Palestinians “human animals” on BBC Newsnight. Both times, the host did not challenge the claims.

This Centre for Media Monitoring report is damning.

The only way Israel can get away with the ongoing genocide is with cover from the corporate media. It shows the bias is not some pro-Palestinian opinion, but hard evidence. We must introduce proper regulation to the corporate media, so it complies with international law.

Featured image via the Telegraph

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