Associated Press Cannot Be Trusted

In a front-page story in the Williamsport Sun-Gazette pre-Thanksgiving, November 27, 2019, an article appeared written by Mohammed Daraghmeh. The story is nothing like journalism, but rather is an opinion piece based upon absolutely false statements.

The author reported on riots propagated by Arabs in Ramallah. The City of Ramallah is the capitol of the Palestinian Authority, which is the dictatorship that rules the Arabs who live on the West Bank of the Jordan River in a kidney-shaped region that is so large that it almost divides Israel in half, north and south.

The writer attempts to justify the Arab riots as a result of the United States announcement that our nation no longer believes Israeli settlements violate international law. They do not.

The article further claims that the Trump decision “upended four decades of American policy and embraced a hardline Israel view at the expense of Palestinian quest for statehood.”

Here is the truth: During the entirety of the existence of the Jewish nation in the Middle East for more than 3-1/2 millennia, Jews have lived on both the East and West Banks of the Jordan River. Those areas were guaranteed as the national homeland to the Jewish people when the British and Americans defeated the Ottoman Turkish Empire in World War I. By treaty and process of both the League of Nations and the United Nations, Israel was promised a national homeland in Israel.

Israel neither captured the West Bank nor East Jerusalem, but rather liberated those areas which had been illegally seized by Jordan in 1948. In the 1948 war, a host of Arab nations attacked Israel and attempted to kill all the Jews. Since the British had turned their arms over to the Arabs, Israel was defenseless in that war. Nevertheless, the Jews hung on to several miles of a coastal enclave, as well as land in the north and south of the country. During the Jordanian occupation of ancient Judea and Samaria, on the West Bank of the Jordan River, they denied Jews the right of access, destroyed Jewish cemeteries, and drove all Jews out of their ancestral homeland.

As a result of that near catastrophe for the Jewish people, armistice lines were created in 1948. In 1967, the Arabs repeated their war of annihilation against the Jewish people. This time, Israel was prepared and recaptured the areas that had originally been given to them. It is this that liars and knaves regularly call “the occupation”.

As a result of the Oslo Accords, the Palestinian Authority is to govern ancient Judea and Samaria. The Palestinian Authority is a dictatorship which had one election and will never have another. That organization promotes terrorism and pays murderers to kill Jews, and supports their families as well.

The Muslims living under the dictatorship of the Palestinian Authority have their State, but that government refuses to declare itself a nation because it has maintained both in writing and orally that it wants to destroy all of Israel. The area that it currently occupies is not enough.

People like Mohammed Daraghmeh believe that Jews should not be able to live, settle or have communities in Judea and Samaria and should be expelled from the West Bank where the Palestinian Authority rules. There are some in the United States who agree with that view.

The article by Mohammed Daraghmeh, in a confused and illogical fashion, also discusses an Arab murderer in Israeli prisons who was not released while he was dying of cancer. Hell does not have enough room for Palestinian agents, officers and residents of that region, who have made the killing of Israelis their top priority.

It is sad that the Associated Press is no longer reporting “news”, but rather is creating a completely false and deceptive narrative via its Arab writers.

This article and its front-page treatment are a complete disgrace to any concept of journalism.

Jews, like any other people, should have a right to live in communities throughout Israel, including Judea and Samaria. It should come as no surprise that 24% of Israel is Muslim. Those Muslims serve in the Israeli Knesset and avail themselves of every opportunity enjoyed by Israeli citizens. No Arab has it better anywhere in the world than the Muslims living in Israel. A quick trip to the Middle East will prove the truth of that assertion.

The claim by Mohammed Daraghmeh, and others, that Jews are somehow illegally living in the area governed by the Palestinian Authority, and have no right to be there is nothing more than ancient racism in a new suit of clothes. Barring, banning, blacklisting and boycotting Jews is nothing new. Placing Jews in ghettos and excluding them from certain areas has a long history.

Muslims in the Middle East long for the day when the Christian crusaders, who they believe worship a man as an idol, are dead. They also harken back to the time when any Jew in the Middle East would fearfully hide under a rock and be subservient to Islamic rule.

The distorted trash of Mohammed Daraghmeh is simply support for the proposition that Jews living in the Middle East are “occupiers” and that their very existence is “at the expense” of the “Palestinian quest for statehood”. It should be noted that “Palestinians” is a term given to that part of the world by the Romans and refers to anyone living along the Eastern Mediterranean, whether Jew, Christian, Muslim, or other. The Muslim-Arabs have appropriated the term “Palestinian” to themselves in order to create the fiction of nationhood which never existed.

The United States declaring that there is nothing illegal or improper about Jews living anywhere west of the Jordan River is simply a recognition of basic civil rights. Israel survived the 1967 Arab War intended to “drive the Jew into the sea”. Any claim that the right of a Jew to live on either side of the 1948 armistice line, erroneously referred to as the 1967 borders, should not be permitted is nothing short of racist policies not uncommon to the Arab world. Gone are the days of ghettos, where Jews can be locked up and forced to live in minimal, squalid areas. A Jew should be able to live anywhere, just as others are entitled to do.

The fact that a formally respected organization such as the Associated Press is permitting narratives to be written which are intended to delegitimatize Jews in the Middle East by those who demonstrate religiously racist intentions is a sad commentary on the direction of American journalism.

About the Author
Cliff Rieders is a Board Certified Trial Advocate in Williamsport, is Past President of the Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association and a past member of the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority.
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