The Al Jazeera network played a major role in exposing Israeli atrocities by showing the suffering of hapless Palestinians in the Gaza Strip during the recent aggression in the territory, panelists in a discussion at the Al Jazeera forum said yesterday.
A senior European media executive said the latest Israeli aggression against the Gazans revealed several stunning facts. Among these facts, the Al Jazeera network’s coverage was very important and played a major role in showing the suffering of people in Gaza Strip.
Alain Gresh, deputy director of Le Monde Diplomatique, told a session of the Fourth Al Jazeera Forum on ‘Reporting the War on Gaza’ said: “From the media front, Israel prepared well for the war. It prepared for the war by generating support from among Israelis besides garnering support in the western world. It was really prepared through organising visit to Sdarot as well as enlarging propaganda in Western Europe.”
But it was Israel who lost the ‘ media war’ at the end.
He said the propaganda by Israel that it was obliged to respond to rocket attacks was not convincing and therefore did not persist for long. “I think this was the first defeat observed propaganda war in Europe and what lead most people to sympathise with Palestinians and their cause.”
The opinion of the French media, according to Gresh, was that they have no journalists and no image in Gaza, adding “for them (French media) the journalists in Gaza were Arabs and they cannot trust them. They were not western journalists”.
Robert Fisk, Middle East correspondent, The Independent, Ahmed El Sheikh, editor-in-chief, Al Jazeera Satellite channel, and Ayman Mohyeldin, Gaza correspondent, Al Jazeera English channel also addressed the session.
Fisk said that his newspaper was the only one in the west to raise the war issues as it has a correspondent in Gaza.
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