Koutsoukis: I remain unimpressed

Look at how he reports on an Australian citizen (Bridgette Chappell – who looks oddly familiar, I may know her slightly) being arrested in the West Bank.

She had also been a part of several weekly protests against the separation barrier built by Israel to enclose the West Bank to prevent suicide bombers from crossing into Israel.[emphasis added]

I mean, firstly, it is unlikely he has even interviewed her (obviously that would require actual journalism), let alone people who know her. That would require actual journalism. But put that aside. Is that why she is protesting the “separation barrier” as he calls it? Note how it’s not even a case of “the Israeli government says the wall was built for the following reasons”. It’s simply – this is why it was built. He’s so biased that he repeats the official claim of the Israeli government without even sourcing it (obviously, we should trust whatever it tells us, especially a supposed journalist covering the area), without even pretending to offer the contrary view. Such as, for example, the view of those protesters Koutsoukis pretended to be reporting on. From Koutsoukis’s balanced and fair article, we would think protesters simply support suicide bombers crossing into Israel.

Also, note how for most of the article, Koutsoukis claims its about visa violation issues (surely, the reason she was “arrested at gunpoint” in Koutsoukis’s words). At the end, Koutsoukis casually mentions – but doesn’t think this is significant or is any reason to revise his earlier claims:

In court the prosecution admitted the IDF had made a mistake by arresting the couple in Ramallah, but said the two women posed a security threat because of their role in inciting protests against the state of Israel. [Emphasis added]

So the article begins: “THE Israeli Supreme Court last night ordered the release of an Australian woman who was arrested at gunpoint in Ramallah on Sunday because her visa had expired.”

Right? First, he tells us she was arrested because her visa had expired. Then, he quotes her saying she was arrested for political reasons, without explaining ANY context, such as the general crackdown on NIF, on international support for Israeli NGOs like Breaking the Silence, on the history of violence and prosecutions against activists in the occupied territories and so on (let alone, the reasons for protesting the apartheid wall). THEN, almost at the end, Koutsoukis reveals the prosecution had charged them with being a “security threat” because they incited protests against the Israeli government. The two activists of course are totally vindicated by the facts, but Koutsoukis hides this in his framework of Israeli propaganda.

Note also at the end – he says some Israeli “said he was Ms Chappell’s boyfriend”. Everything said by leftists (let alone Palestinians – count the Palestinians he sources in this, or more generally) is to be treated with skepticism and openly sourced so that people can judge it for themselves. On the other hand, the Israeli government is simply trustworthy, so we should basically just believe what they say, no need to even say who said it.

One Response to “Koutsoukis: I remain unimpressed”
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  1. […] long been unimpressed by Koutsoukis’ journalism. Perhaps if SMH employed a journalist who thought it worthwhile to investigate these issues, we […]

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