Thursday, January 24, 2008

How to Manipulate the Media

The events of this week in Gaza show once again how the world press has been and continues to be manipulated. To be honest, I sometimes wonder if they ever do realize how much manipulation does go on.

The “candle light protest” was a classic example. Sky News was “interviewing the man in the street”. Of course, the answers to the reporters’ questions were the classic rhetoric of Israel to blame for the lack of electricity. The fact that 75% of the needs for the whole Gaza strip continued to be provided by Israel was “irrelevant”

What was overlooked during the interview was the fact that the rooms in the building in the background of the location were fully lit!!

The manipulation of the media by the Palestinians goes back to the first official visit of Palestinian revolutionaries to North Vietnam 1964, when Arafat's lieutenant Abu Jihad, the man who would eventually head the PLO's military operations went to study the strategy and tactics of guerilla war.

The most significant visit to Vietnam, however, took place in 1970, when General Vo Nguyen Giap, the Vietnamese master of insurrection, extended an invitation to Arafat and his deputy from Fatah, to come to Hanoi for discussions with a Politburo team on how North Vietnam could help the Palestinian struggle.

The Palestinians stayed for two weeks, and during this time examined the reasons why public opinion in the West towards the Vietnamese struggle was more favorable than towards the PLO.

The Vietnamese also coached them on media packaging and manipulation, suggesting that they develop appealing catchy programs in order to seem flexible. The PLO has maintained a relationship with the Socialist Republic of Vietnam through to the present. Fatah has had the works of General Giap translated into Arabic.

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