Bias on Bias Alleged

, Kevin Mink, Leave a comment

Could Campus Report provide some documentation for Danielle Glazer’s claim that Transjordan was “severed” from something called “historic Palestine,” as “defined by the League of Nations” (“Textbook Bias Against Israel,” 6/1/05)? She obviously plagiarized this paragraph from the Jewish Virtual Library:

… nearly 80 percent of what was the historic land of Palestine and the Jewish National Home, as defined by the League of Nations, was severed by the British in 1922 and allocated to what became Transjordan. Jewish settlement there was barred. The UN partitioned the remaining 20 percent of Palestine into two states….
(http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/History/partition_plan.html)

But her source, itself, is incorrect. (The only “definition” the League of Nations gave to the Jewish National Home was that it would not span the Jordan.) And Glazer’s “paraphrase” – her repositioning of the “as defined by” clause – makes no sense whatsoever.

Unfortunately, such sloppiness runs throughout her piece. Consider the following:

The PLO created the tactic of airline hijacking, first used on July 22, 1968, on a flight from Rome to Tel Aviv.The U.S. State Department considers the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and Fatah, two of the original members of the PLO, to be terrorist organizations. According to the U.S. State Department’s Patterns of Global Terrorism, 2003: “[the PFLP] committed numerous international terrorist attacks” and Fatah “has carried out terrorist attacks in twenty countries.”

Apparently Glazer hasn’t read the report she cites. First, the PFLP was founded in 1967, according to the State Department. It’s impossible, therefore, for it to have been an “original member” of the PLO, an organization founded in 1964. Second, the State Department does not consider Fatah to be a terrorist organization, nor does it credit the group with carrying out “terrorist attacks in twenty countries.” Glazer is quoting the Patterns of Global Terrorism description of the Abu Nidal Organization, which numbers “Fatah – The Revolutionary Council” among its four aliases. Fatah and the ANO are not the same group. The latter, according to Glazer’s own source, “split from the PLO in 1974.” (http://www.state.gov/s/ct/rls/pgtrpt/2003/31711.htm)

As to her claim about hijacking: The PLO couldn’t possibly have “created” hijacking in 1968. According to Jin-Tai Choi, author of Aviation Terrorism: Historical Survey, Perspectives, and Responses, the first recorded hijacking occurred in 1931, when Peruvian revolutionaries took control of a Pan Am plane over Lima. The first hijacking in the United States occurred on May 1, 1961. And between 1959 and 1967, there were thirteen hijackings in Cuba, alone.

I look forward to seeing these errors corrected on your site.

Kevin Mink is a freelance writer.

 

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