NPR ‘Worse Than Worthless’ on Middle East

National Public Radio watchdog Mytwords (NPR Check, 3/3/09) is moved to declare the network’s Palestine/Israel coverage “worse than worthless” after “yesterday morning first featured Michele Kelemen redelivering Secretary of State Clinton’s talking points (Hamas is a terrorist organization, blah, blah, blah, Hamas has to renounce violence, blah, blah, blah, U.S. is giving tons of money to Gaza, blah, blah, etc.)”:

After that four-minute-plus State Department summary, what does NPR offer? Who would you go to for expert analysis? How about someone who has “has advised six American secretaries of state.” Yep, NPR serves up the stale ideas of Aaron David Miller–again….

Miller mentions Netanyahu‘s negotiations with Arafat at the Wye River and the Hebron withdrawal. Throughout the interview, Linda Wertheimer just nods along like a bobblehead. I think she forgot to see how the actual settlement policies went under Netanyahu back when he was Prime Minister. Nothing about what that great Hebron concession really meant for Palestinians. Nothing about Netanyahu’s provocations that even an editor from the rightist WINEP takes note of. Nothing about Netanyahu’s Jerusalem expansionist efforts.

Mytwords imagines “it would be hard to do more pro-Likud, pro-Zionist coverage of the Palestine conflict.” Indeed, you can read about NPR‘s long history of biased reportage on the region in the FAIR magazine Extra!: “The Illusion of Balance: NPR’s Coverage of Mideast Deaths Doesn’t Match Reality” (11-12/01) by Seth Ackerman.