May 20, 2019

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Palestinian Ministry of Information threatens Arab press freedoms – and welcomes clueless British delegation

The two top stories at the Palestinian Ministry of Information website (autotranslated above) reveals much about how the West coddles a government whose ideals are completely at odds with civilized society.

The top story threatens any Arab journalist, and their employers, who would dare to visit Israel, in the wake of reports that nine journalists from Morocco. Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen and Syria are planning to come to Israel next week.

 The Ministry of Information called on the Union of Arab Journalists to take punitive measures against the nine Arab journalists, the institutions they work for, their status and their institutions and place them on a blacklist if they agree to a normalization visit [to Israel.]

 The Ministry affirms that tolerating Israel and its terrorism constitutes a departure from the Arab ranks and Arab consensus resolutions issued in particular by the Council of Arab Information Ministers. It is a disgrace that can not be justified, nor purged of, because it represents an departure from the official and popular position that Israel is a state of occupation, racism, ethnic cleansing and extremism. The Ministry urges them to establish controls for the non-repetition of such suspicious visits.

The Ministry  reiterates that the gates of Palestine are well known to the Palestinian people, who face the worst occupation in two centuries, an occupation that violates international resolutions and laws and practices oppression and terrorism against the Palestinian people and their land and civilization. On every occasion they cry “death to the Arabs”, and incite their children to terrorism and the destruction of our people. This occupation can not be supported with visits and normalization with them.

This press release, filled with absurd lies and vitriol, is the official position of the Palestinian government and this ministry, and it is typical of the statements it issues.

But there is no backlash against this call for blacklisting journalists by the Palestinian government. On the contrary – the second story is about how representative of the British consulate visited this same ministry and had a pleasant time where Palestinian officials proudly described how professional they are doing their jobs and how Israel is the state that targets journalists.

Imagine the impact to peace if just once, a Western government would cancel a photo-op visit like this because of the outrageous lies and slanders and threats that come just from this one ministry. 

Right now there are no consequences to unacceptable behavior and threats by Palestinian officials. The West holds the key to ensure that they act like adults, if only the EU would express the slightest displeasure over such insane incitement and threats.

Unfortunately, the West continues to treat the Palestinian leaders like spoiled children instead. Only Israel gets chided for things its officials say, in or out of context.

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