Thursday, 6 May 2010

Love of the Land: Seattle Times Columnist Entitled to Own Facts?

Seattle Times Columnist Entitled to Own Facts?

Gilead Ini
CAMERA Media Analysis
05 April '10

Bruce Ramsey is entitled to his opinions. In fact, as a columnist for the Seattle Times, opinions are precisely what he gets paid for. It seems, though, that his employers feel he’s also entitled to his own facts. This despite journalistic codes of ethics maintaining that opinion pieces, like news stories, must be accurate.

In a March 31, 2010 column commenting on Israel’s justification for the 2008-2009 Gaza war, Ramsey claimed that rockets fired by Gaza Palestinians into Israeli towns "hadn’t killed any Israelis":

Israel said it was defending itself, against rockets — homemade pipe-bomb-type rockets. These had been fired by Gazan hotheads against the Israeli town of Sderot to protest Israel's quarantine. The rockets hadn't killed any Israelis, but they might have. ("Congressman Brian Baird stands up for the people of Gaza")Not only is this claim about lack of fatalities demonstrably false, but so is just about everything else in that passage.

• Prior to the Gaza war, over 20 people were killed by Palestinian rockets.

• Israel was acting to stop not only the local "homemade" Qassam rockets, but also the sophisticated Grad or Katyusha type rockets launched from Gaza into Israel immediately prior to the war, and as early as 2006.

(Read full analysis)

Love of the Land: Seattle Times Columnist Entitled to Own Facts?

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