Archives: The Achilles Heals of Media Titans

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There is confusion laced with fear in the mind of every publisher in the world. This is especially true of the old titans of the print media who view the Internet with a mixture of lust and suspicion. Until just a few years ago, a print media empire like the New York Times Company was unassailable by virtue of its size. They could drown out any competitive voice by sheer volume of circulation. Even a market as large as New York City could be virtually monopolized by three daily papers, the New York Times, the ever plebeian Daily News and Murdoch’s tabloid, the New York Post. Most other American cities have markets dominated by a single paper.

Before Gore invented the Internet, the print media was a tidy little business dominated by a few publishers who made fortunes that made them king makers. Randolph Hearst was a publisher who was arrogant enough to start the Spanish-American war through his infamous campaign of yellow journalism.

In a similar fashion, The New York Times Company has a management and editorial staff that have arrogated the power to make and change America’s policy in the Middle East. This is especially true when it comes to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. The Machiavellian princes at the Times will not shy from publicly tormenting any American politician who dares have a view that clashes with Israeli ‘wisdom’. Their power has been such that America now has a Middle Eastern foreign policy that is based on Zionist historic mythology. It is also a policy that caters to Israel’s every ambition.

These old school media titans plan to hold onto their market share and will not easily shed their power to sway public policy. Thinking themselves invincible, they are making a play for dominating advocacy journalism on the Web. They bring to this virtually impossible task the heavy artillery of their historical record. One could not design a more lethal two-edged sword.

Imagine the challenges they face on the views and news they have printed on the Israeli/Palestinian conflict over the last fifty years. The ‘vaunted’ content they wish to leverage on this particular subject is very tainted material. I predict that the credibility of this news organization will be damaged by a technology that gives a new generation of cyber journalists immediate access to archives that can easily be impeached by those who have not swallowed whole the encyclopedia of Zionist mythology.

New lessons are quickly being assimilated by nimble dot.com competitors who do not carry the baggage of archives. The burden of these tainted archives will be the Achilles heals of the ‘established’ print media. The rules of the games in advocacy journalism are changing faster than a click of the mouse. Consider that every article a journalist or an editor pens today, becomes a permanent record. Every legitimate response also gains an eternal shelf life. If a journalist twists his news or his facts, the evidence of tampering will not get lost in the recycling bin. It can be accumulated on a tiny disk. Indeed, the titans at the Times have not only to worry about the news they print today, they need to worry about an Archive that goes back 50 years and speaks volumes about the nature and extent of shameless pro-Israeli advocacy.

The New York Times tradition of tainting the news on the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is one that predates the founding of the Jewish State. In New York, Israel is a local issue. That is why this particular municipal paper devotes so much space to the subject. And that is just one subject matter they need to fret about. It would be hard to believe that the complaints about the content of their archives will emanate only from those of us who know Palestinians history. Their role as in the attempted theft of the presidential election has no doubt created serious concerns in serious quarters.

The ‘Archive’ liability problem only gets worst when it becomes clear that the New York Times will also be held accountable for the Boston Globe, which practices a more vile and plebeian version of advocacy. The Boston Globe, also published by Sulzberger, is the home of Jeff Jacoby, a peddler of unusually derogatory smut. Consider his article in the Boston Globe of 11/20/2000, which included the following choice words:

LATE IN SEPTEMBER, the Palestinian Authority kicked off a campaign of organized violence meant to hasten the final ”liberation” of Israel from the Jews. The fighting began with mobs throwing rocks and firebombs at Jewish civilians and vehicles. Soon it escalated to militiamen firing automatic weapons at Israeli troops – often from behind Arab teenagers used as human shields.

There have been scenes of shocking barbarity. On the eve of Rosh Hashana, a Muslim throng on the Temple Mount plaza hurled stones and bricks on worshippers at the Western Wall below. In Nablus, Arabs demolished Joseph’s Tomb, torching and smashing the ancient shrine in a frenzy of desecration. On Oct. 11, gunmen opened fire on mourners carrying Rabbi Hillel Lieberman to his grave; the rabbi had been killed trying to save the Torah scroll at Joseph’s Tomb. When three Israeli reservists took a wrong turn into Ramallah, two of them were lynched, their corpses mutilated beyond recognition, thrown from a window, and dragged through the streets. The third, it was reported, was burned in his car.

As If that is not enough inciteful and hysterical hate mongering, this moron of a bigot goes on to state that Palestinians are letting their kids become ‘martyrs’ in exchange for cash from the Palestinian Authority. Maligning and defaming the fallen Palestinians and their mothers with this particular bit of slander has appeared once too often in Sulzberger’s publications. It cannot be written off as the work of a deranged solitary journalist.

No kind of apology will ever suffice for this kind of vindictive graffiti that pollutes many a page published by the New York Times Company. It is one thing for the Times to be a belligerent in the Palestinian/Israeli conflict and quite another to practice the arson of defamation. The Palestinians have no refuge from the Times, but Arab-Americans and the Muslims of America will long remember the vilification and manufactured disdain that have become a nauseating by-product of pro-Israeli advocacy at The New York Times. The arsenal buried in the archives of Mr Sulzberger’s publications inflicted many a wound to our collective memory.

Jacoby’s article completely ignored the almost 200 Palestinians who had been killed by the IDF at the time the article was published. Also unmentioned by Jacoby are the thousands of Palestinians who were maimed and mutilated by the unrestrained force being applied by the IDF. Nothing is said about the extent of property damage inflicted on Palestinians and the desecration of their mosques and churches. Jacoby’s racist drivel can always be found in the archives of the New York Times Publishing Company (Boston Globe Division).

What was even more outrageous about this particular ‘Boston Globe / New York Times’ Jacoby article was that it came in response to a full-page advertisement by the American-Arab-Anti-Discrimination Committee in the New York Times. Yet there is no mention in Jacoby’s article that his paycheck is written by the New York Times Publishing Company. Sulzberger and his company have no qualms about selling space to an Arab-American civil rights organization in one of his publications and turning around and allowing The Boston Globe’s Jacoby to slander every Palestinian victim, every Palestinian victim’s family, every Arab, every Arab-American and every Muslim-American. Sulzberger is not beyond selling an Ad to a baker and then spreading ruinous rumors about his dough.

All this is nothing new for Sulzberger and his minions in New York and Boston.

They have long considered it fair game to malign fellow Americans of Arab descent We are just considered a side casualty of the Israel Firster’s attempt to demonize the Palestinians. Well, let them write what they want. We just need them to remember to leave a copy in the archives.

It is said of lawyers that 99% of them give the other one- percent a bad name. I don’t know what the exact figures are for New York Times journalists. But the archives paint a pretty dismal picture. Every journalist at the Times and the Globe writes in the company of other journalists who get paid by Sulzberger. Jacoby, Sontag, Safire, Friedman and Bob Herbert toil at the same place as Anthony Lewis. Can it be that Lewis was blind to the suspect journalism of his colleagues? Does Jacoby’s attitude extend to those who do the hiring and firing at the New York Times?. How diverse is the staff at this print media empire, anyhow? Time for nothing but worries at the New York Times. Infested archives are the dry rot that will reduce Sulzberger’s print empire back to being just another ethnic provincial paper. The internet is not good news for the print media titans.

Mr. Ahmed Amr is Editor of NileMedia.com in Seattle and a regular contributor to Media Monitors Network (MMN)

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