Last evening CNN broadcast the first installment of a special called, "G-d's Warriors". It's a three-part special, covering, in the words of the press release, "the impact of the rise of religious fundamentalism as a powerful political force in three faiths: Judaism, Islam, and Christianity." Tonight was the Jewish portion. (This portion is scheduled to be repeated on CNN on Saturday, August 25 and Sunday, August 26, at 9:00 PM each night.)
Considering it was produced by CNN, and reported by Christiane Amanpour, I didn't expect much except the same old story about how the Jews are terrorists and are to blame for all the problems in the Middle East. And once again, they didn't disappoint me. I wanted to watch the segment because I knew many of the people who were going to be in it. Some were excited, as though it might be encouraging. In a way, it was. Seeing old friends who have not strayed from the course, fighting the good fight, that's always good. However, the lies and innuendos get old and can be hurtful.
One thing that was noticeable throughout the entire two-hour episode was that Amanpour kept using the term "occupied territories" (interchanged with "occupied land" and "occupied West Bank") over and over and over. She even got the opinion of an expert in international law as to whether it's "occupied" or not (he thinks it is). However, that as not the truth, as it clearly explained on the Jewish Virtual Library's Web site.
There were several errors in reporting, as could be expected. For instance, Amanpour reported that the Muslim scriptures (the Koran) state that the Temple Mount in Jerusalem is the place from which Mohammed ascended into heaven. Actually, Jerusalem is never mentioned, not even once, in the entire Koran. (It is mentioned, however, 811 times in the NASB version and 669 times in the JPS version of the Hebrew Scriptures.)
In reporting the fiasco of the U.S. loan guarantees made during the George Herbert Walker Bush administration (which was actually a segment on the pro-Israel lobbyists in Washington, D.C.), Amanpour made it seem as if Bush had finally given in to Israel after being pressured by pro-Israel lobbyists when, In fact, he never did totally give in. Bush was opposed to the loan guarantees because Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir would not freeze construction in the settlements. The loan guarantees were necessary due to the large number of Jews emigrating from the now-fallen Soviet Union. The Arabs denounced Shamir's settlement policy, so Bush held up the guarantees, trying to blackmail Shamir into changing his policy. To his credit, Shamir did not. Finally, the Israeli people voted Shamir and his party out of office, and the newly-elected Prime Minister, Yitzhak Rabin, declared an immediate settlement freeze. (Remember, these were only loan guarantees, a type of co-signing for a loan, not the actual funding of the loan, There were no U.S. tax dollars involved, unless Israel defaulted on a loan, which, of course, it never did.)
In her report about the eviction of Jews from Gaza, Amanpour stated that the majority of the Gaza residents had taken the compensation offered by the Israeli government and left early, and that only a few had to be physically removed. The truth is that the majority of the residents did not take the compensation but, rather, chose to remain in their homes until the Israeli government forcibly removed them.
With the help of a few other people and some clever editing, she made it seem like all of the work done by the Jewish settlers were, in her words, "schemes". It's as if they were not operating honestly, but rather they were always planning and plotting how to steal land from the Arabs or how to mislead the government. It always seemed as if the poor Arabs were getting the shaft while the Jews were taking their land. Sure sounds like what is reported by the mainstream media everyday. Wait a minute, CNN IS the mainstream media! Surprise, surprise!
Of course she had to include one of the great modern-day anti-semites, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter. (Here is a man whose lies so repulsed his own staff and board of directors that most of them quit his own foundation.) Carter claimed that the settlements were the only obstacle to peace in the Middle East. To her credit, Amanpour asked Carter what about Arab terrorists blowing up little children, wasn't that also an obstacle? Carter replied that while that too was not good, the settlements were the greater obstacle.
The main fact that Amanpour, CNN, and many other people fail to realize is that this is not about a war between religions; rather it is a battle involving most of the world and its efforts to deny the existence of G-d. As long as the state of Israel exists, and as long as the Jewish people live there, and (to quote from Hatikva) "as long as the Jewish spirit is yearning deep in the heart, with eyes turned toward the East, looking toward Zion," then there will always be an Israel, a reminder to the world that the G-d of Creation, the G-d of Israel — the G-d of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, is the one and only G-d who reigns above the heavens, ruling over all the creation, blessed be He.