Racism of lower expectations…
Palestinians Beat Female Journalists; World “Sees No Evil”
- Had an Israeli soldier shouted at these female journalists, representatives of Western human rights organizations and major newspapers would have banged on their doors long ago, demanding that they justify physically abusing peaceful women who were just doing their job. It is harder, however, to make sense of the behavior of the foreign media and international human rights groups, who essentially champion Abbas’s fiefdom by ignoring its brutality.
- The truth is that the Palestinian Authority is a body that has long been functioning as a dictatorship that suppresses freedom of speech and imposes a reign of terror and intimidation on Palestinian journalists and critics.
- It is only a question of time before a Western journalist is beaten on the streets of a Palestinian city. When that happens, the international media and human rights groups can look to themselves and their own biased and unprofessional behavior for answers.
Two female Palestinian journalists were beaten during protests in the West Bank in the past week. The two women, Lara Kan’an and Majdoleen Hassona, were assaulted by Palestinian Authority security officers while covering Palestinian demonstrations calling on President Mahmoud Abbas to lift the economic sanctions he imposed last year on the Gaza Strip.
The physical assaults on Kan’an and Hassona are seen by Palestinians as part of the Palestinian Authority’s continued effort to silence critics and intimidate journalists who fail to “toe the line.” The beatings, which took place separately in the West Bank cities of Nablus and Tulkarem, mark a new high in the Palestinian leadership’s crackdown on pubic freedoms: assaulting an Arab woman on the street is considered a humiliation of the highest order to her and her clan.
While such assaults spark protests among Palestinians, the international community and Western correspondents covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict continue to play their game of “See No Evil.” When the perpetrators are Palestinians, they can get away with — literally, murder — from the perspective of International human rights organizations and groups ostensibly concerned about freedom of the media. What would have been the response on the part of the international community and press, one wonders, had the two Palestinian women even been roughed up by Israeli soldiers.
Kan’an and Hassona, however, are unfortunate. Their plight will not be splashed onto the front pages of the New York Times or the Guardian because the men who beat up them are Palestinian, and not Israeli. Had an Israeli soldier shouted at these female journalists, representatives of Western human rights organizations and major newspapers would have banged on their doors long ago, demanding that they justify physically abusing peaceful women who were just doing their job.