Monday, August 27, 2007

CNN's Religious Warriors Series

Okay, so maybe I have to go back and watch the whole thing again. (six hours!?) I must admit, parts of the whole thing did make me cringe. And I'm not great at being unbiased when it comes to watching a program about Israel.

But in retrospect, and after reading CAMERA's critique of the Jewish and Muslim parts of the series, I have reason to agree with CAMERA's assessment. There was a great deal of bias in the reporting. I'm not sure that it was entirely intentional -- in many ways, although CNN believes that it's reporting about apples and apples, I think the comparisons between Jews, Muslims and Christians is more like apples, oranges, and bananas. One of the comments CAMERA makes:

It is false in its basic premise, established in the opening scene in which Jewish (and Christian) religious fervency is equated with that of Muslims heard endorsing "martyrdom," or suicide-killing. There is, of course, no counterpart among Jews and Christians to the violent jihadist Muslim campaigns underway across the globe, either in numbers of perpetrators engaged or in the magnitude of death and destruction wrought.

There does seem to be a lot of focus in the Jewish segment on the pro-Israel lobby in this country. Far more than in the Muslim section, which does not speak about any of the oil lobbies that are waged on behalf of Muslim countries like Saudi Arabia (...home of many of the 9/11 terrorists, why are we friends with them???)

In fact, there was, as CAMERA points out, a much more gentle tone towards the Muslim extremists, especially those in our own country...

There was a noticeably gentler and more cordial tone toward Muslim extremists in contrast to the often snide and hectoring tone displayed toward pro-Israel Americans and Israeli settlers in "God's Jewish Warriors." In "God's Muslim Warriors," Amanpour included two apolitical segments with appealing devout Muslim women who talked about why they wear a head covering and how Islam enriches their lives. No such apolitical segment about devout Jews appeared in "God's Jewish Warriors."

Read the rest of CAMERA's critique here...and here...and let me know what you thought!

1 comment:

chanale said...

I don't have anything to add - I just wanted to thank you for this post. I had not heard of the series until I saw this, but when I saw that CNN was rerunning it at odd hours through the week, I recorded all three segments (although I've only watched two so far).

I do not know nearly as much about Israel as I ought to, so I appreciated your thoughts on the program as well as the CAMERA articles.