< link rel="DCTERMS.isreplacedby" href="http://bokertov.typepad.com/ btb/" >

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Now what?

Muslim-Christian "Riot" near Bethlehem

A Christian Palestinian youth throws stones at a burning car
during clashes with Muslim residents of Beit Sahour, near
Bethlehem, July 14, 2004. Hundreds of Muslims and Christians
fought each other with metal rods and stones in clashes that
were sparked after a man photographed a woman in the changing
room of a clothes shop. (Magnus Johansson/Reuters)

al Reuters has the story, and as usual, the best part gets tucked in at the end:
Inter-religious tension has been brewing for some time in the Bethlehem area, where Christians number only around 20 percent of the population, despite making up a majority of the population less than a century ago.

The exodus of more affluent Christians has grown since a Palestinian uprising began in September 2000.

Many Christians say they feel uneasy at a rise of Islamic radicalism during nearly four years of conflict with Israel . . . "
It goes on to blame Israel, of course. Please note: Additional reporting by Mohammed Assadi in Ramallah. I betcha Mohammed Assadi in RamAllah would never blame his Arab brothers for nothin' - no way - no how. Nope, it's those evil Joooos every time.

More (Gross) on al Reuters, in case you missed it:
The increased speed of the Internet and the demand for instant, 24-hour TV news coverage means that the world’s news outlets rely heavily on Reuters and the AP, which in turn rely on a network of local Palestinian “stringers.” Virtually all breaking news (and much of the non-breaking news) on CNN, the BBC, Fox, and other networks comes from these stringers.

Such stringers are hired for speed, to save money (there is no need to pay drivers and translators), and for their local knowledge. But in many cases, in hiring them, their connections to Arafat’s regime and Hamas count for more than their journalistic abilities. All too often the information they provide, and the supposed eyewitnesses they interview, are undependable. Yet, because of Reuters’s prestige, American and international news outlets simply take their copy as fact. Thus non-massacres become massacres; death tolls are exaggerated; and gunmen are written about as if they were civilians.