Carlo's Corner: Forget Gaza, the media are on to the real big story

Saturday, December 8, 2012
For a brief moment last month Gaza was a lead item for the world's media.

For a brief moment last month, as the bombs fell and destruction spread, Gaza was a lead story for the world's media. But now the plight of 1.5 million people living in an over crowded open-air prison, routinely attacked and denied essential medicines, has made way for a far more important story: an English aristocrat is knocked up.

So important was the news that Duchess Catherine was pregnant with the third-in-line for the British crown, The Guardian decided to live blog the story. But, as the story pretty much exhausted itself after stating the news that Kate was pregnant, the blog amounted to simply reporting all the people reporting that Kate was pregnant.

This lasted from 4.22pm until 6.49pm, when the paper finally ran out of new ways to report on other people reporting that the duchess was pregnant. Give it its due, it tried its best — padding out its updates with such stunning revelations as some minor royal who never gets in the papers any other time releasing a statement that they “welcome” the news and “wished the couple well”.

My favourite was when, at 6.40pm, The Guardian announced an official statement from the White House that “the president and first lady … extend our congratulations” on the “welcome news”.

I was on tenterhooks waiting for that one, because obviously there was a pretty high chance Obama's statement would read: “Duchess who? Who the fuck is that? I couldn't care less about some inbred spawn in some outdated institution. Now if you'll excuse me I have work to do, these drone strikes don't order themselves.”

But even when the mainstream media did report the Gazan conflict, they reported it in such an extremely biased fashion that distorted the issue so severely it was almost better when they said nothing. If we are being honest, we have to say there was really only one paper with the guts to tell the almost entirely ignored stories of suffering.

That paper is the Jerusalem Post.

On November 20, as entire families were being wiped out in Gaza, the Post ran an article titled: “Sirens causing some pets to suffer from anxiety.”

“The situation in the South has been very difficult not only for us humans but also for our pets,” a dog owner told the Post. It was a heart-wrenching tale of the unease of Israeli pets caused by sirens warning of the homemade, unguided rockets fired into Israel from Gaza.

Yes, you won't read that in the rest of the anti-Semitic, virulently anti-Israel biased world press — some of whom actually had the gall to mention in passing that more than 170 Palestinians, including at least 61 children, died in Israel's eight-day assault, compared to five Israelis.

The situation for one group of pet owners “has become quite difficult”, the Post said, as they struggle to get their pet into a bomb shelter. Really, this is something for those recalcitrant Palestinians to think about next time they whine about a severe shortage of urgently needed medicines to deal with the hundreds of civilians injured in Israel's latest round-the-clock series of air strikes.

Dozens of dead Palestinians kids are one thing, but for Christ's sake, won't someone think of the Chihuahuas?

Luckily, the Israeli state is not willing to take terrorist threats to pets lying down. This is not the first time Israeli pets have suffered so horrendously. During the time of Israel's 22-day 2008-09 Operation Cast Lead assault, Israeli site Ynet reported: “With cats and dogs facing rocket threat just like their human companions, Agriculture Ministry decides to help pay for medical care of pets injured by rocket fire.”

Israel might maintain a crippling siege on Gaza that has caused “chronic malnutrition” according to the Red Cross, but it put aside special funds for medical care for Israeli pets. Because they might just be animals to some people, but at least they are not terrorists who insist on living on land God quite clearly gave Israel.

And to think, some people accuse Israel of being a mass-murdering rogue terror state! Do you think this act of kindness was noticed? No, it was ignored — as was the evil Palestinian threat to pets to begin with. The United Nations rushed to “investigate” the killing of about 1400 Palestinians, including hundreds of children, during Operation Cast Lead, and yet its Goldstone Report had not one word on how stressed out some kittens were feeling.

From GLW issue 949