NYT Discovers ‘New’ Palestinian Nonviolent Resistance

New York Times reporter Ethan Bronner has a piece today (4/7/10) headlined “Palestinians Try a Less Violent Path to Resistance,” which attempts to show that there is a new move away from armed resistance to Israeli occupation. You get that message pretty clearly from Bronner’s language: He calls it a “new approach” and argues, “Nonviolence has never caught on here.”

That’s not so; if anything, Palestinian nonviolence just hasn’t caught on at the New York Times. As Patrick O’Connor wrote in 2005:

Over the last three years the New York Times has published only three feature articles on Palestinian nonviolent resistance. This despite the fact that Palestinians have conducted hundreds of nonviolent protests over the last three years throughout the West Bank against Israel’s construction of the Wall on Palestinian land, and despite the fact that the Israeli army killed nine Palestinian protesters, wounded several thousand protesters, harassed and collectively punished villages that protested, and arrested hundreds of protesters, including nonviolent protest leaders.

More recently (1/28/10), Edith Garwood at Amnesty International criticized Barack Obama, musician Bono and Times columnist Nicholas Kristof for saying that Palestinians need to find their MLK/Gandhi–ignoring the fact that Palestinians nonviolently resist every single day, and such actions have roots that go back to the 1900s:

Complicit too is the media’s noncoverage of nonviolent direct actions and damaging comments by someone of Bono’s stature that completely ignores the vital nonviolent struggle and committed activists.

Palestinian leaders like Ghassan Andoni, Mustapha Barghouti, Jamal Jumaâ┚¬Ã¢”ž¢, Abdallah Abu Rahme, Mohammed Othman and Jean Zaru , among others, continue to speak publicly and organize direct actions to nonviolently protest injustices.

About Peter Hart

Activism Director and and Co-producer of CounterSpinPeter Hart is the activism director at FAIR. He writes for FAIR's magazine Extra! and is also a co-host and producer of FAIR's syndicated radio show CounterSpin. He is the author of The Oh Really? Factor: Unspinning Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly (Seven Stories Press, 2003). Hart has been interviewed by a number of media outlets, including NBC Nightly News, Fox News Channel's O'Reilly Factor, the Los Angeles Times, Newsday and the Associated Press. He has also appeared on Showtime and in the movie Outfoxed. Follow Peter on Twitter at @peterfhart.