The Guardian’s Israel obsession in one image


We just came across this little nugget of information from a site called Views of the World.

To understand how British people perceive the events on the globe, one can look at how frequently a country has been mentioned in major news stories. The following maps do exactly this by visualising the number of news items on the website of the British Newspaper The Guardian (data derived from their Data store).

One region of the world certainly seems bit, well, enlarged doesn’t it?  Just for the sake of comparison:

Quite interestingly, the Guardian helps us out quite a bit, by noting that stories tagged “Israel” represented the 5th highest of any country specific tag (outside of the UK).

Israel, it should be noted, is a nation of 7.6 million citizens, representing a little over 1/10 of 1% of the world population, situated on roughly 21,00 square kilometers of land, representing a bit over 1/100 of 1% of the world’s total.

The Guardian’s obsession in simple map form…gotta love it!

(This story was also noted by Ha’aretz, CAMERA, The JC, and Yaacov Lozowick’s Ruminations)

59 comments on “The Guardian’s Israel obsession in one image

  1. Its not just the Guardian, it is the entire world news operations. The city that has the most international journalists after Washington dc is Jerusalem. Its sick.

  2. I suppose the ideas that:
    1. I/P is one of the longest-standing conflicts in the world, in a region of crucial geopolitical significance, so it is not surprising that the media cover it extensively;
    2. there is a lot of US and EU taxpayers’ money involved; and
    3. the world and his wife is against the occupation of the WB

    haven’t occurred to you, Adam?

    ‘Obsession’. You have no idea how newspapers actually work, do you?

    • All three points are nonsense. IF the region were THAT important there would have been peace by now. Europe as a region is far more important, and yet everybody took their time figuring out what to do with the communists. GOLO, aren’t from mondoscheiss? Where they make up all sorts? What EU money? Or you mean the money the Arabs throw at the pals which they then spend on buying their thugs? They are all phantom arguments Golo. What went down in Burma up until about one year ago was infinitely more bloody than I/P, yet the Left did not give a flying fig about the people murdered raped and displaced in and around Burma.
      The Left has an antisemitic core and hates the USA. That is the Groans motivation and yours.

  3. A further breakdown would be useful.

    How many of the articles are related to terrorist attacks on the UK, US, India, Israel by islamofascist terrorists?

    It’s a world-wide jihad.

  4. Golo,

    1. Why does it seem fair to you that the length of a conflict would correlate to how much news coverage it gets? Wouldn’t it seem that the overall death toll from a conflict would count more than the length? If you concede this point, then wouldn’t the fact that the number of conflict related deaths in the Congo (over the last 20 years) is over 5 million (whereas the I-P conflict has resulted is far less than 10,000) be relevant to deciding which country to devote valuable journalistic resources to?

    http://stealthconflicts.wordpress.com/2008/11/23/conflict-death-tolls/

    2. The amount of money both the EU and U.S. spend on aid to either Israel or the Palestinians represents a minuscule percentage of their overall budget. The U.S. budget in 2009 was 3.5 trillion dollars. Aid to Israel (military aid, most which Israel must spend on U.S. defense contractors) is 3 billion. Even the overall U.S. foreign aid budget is a fraction of 1% of overall spending.

    3. Since your last point is a non-sequitur, I’ll just respond by saying that, if you were a true liberal, you (and your wife) would be against Palestinian state-sponsored anti-Semitism; you would be against the refusal, by even most moderate Palestinians, to even recognized the right of the Jewish state to exist. Further, if you are as astute an observer of the conflict as you claim, then you would surely know that the last 10 years has proven that merely withdrawing from territory doesn’t necessarily bring peace. I honestly don’t understand why Guardian readers, in all their supposed erudition, don’t understand how incredibly naive (and facile) it is to believe that solving the I-P conflict is simply a matter of withdrawing from the WB. Do you really believe that?

  5. golo: The other “I/P” conflict (India/Pakistan) has been going on just as long as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict if not longer. India and Pakistan are in a region of crucial geopolitical significance (near Middle East and East Asia), and both were former British colonies with significant expat populations in the UK.

    It makes absolutely no sense that a British paper would pay more attention to the Israel-Palestinian conflict than to the India-Pakistan conflict, given Pakistan’s proximity (and participation in?) the War in Afghanistan, in which British citizens have been killed.

    Interestingly, “the world and his wife” are also against the Moroccan occupation of Western Sahara, the Turkish occupation of North Cyprus, and the Chinese occupation of Tibet (none of whom have any right to the land they’re occupying and none of whom act with the degree of restrain Israel has, making them all more morally transparent occupations), but none of those are talked about nearly as much as the Israeli control over the West Bank.

    It’s true that the Guardian is unduly obsessed with Israel, but that’s not a unique problem. The entire world focuses too much on it, to the detriment of other issues. When Israel’s administration of a territory the size of Rhode Island garners more worldwide attention than genocide and massacre in Africa (see Sudan or the DR Congo), or brutal military occupation of a much larger territory (see Turkish Kurdistan), or the delicate conflict over a disputed piece of the Himalayas between two nuclear powers (see India and Pakistan), there must be something very wrong with the way our media reports on the goings-on of the world.

    • “Interestingly, “the world and his wife” are also against the Moroccan occupation of Western Sahara, the Turkish occupation of North Cyprus, and the Chinese occupation of Tibet (none of whom have any right to the land they’re occupying and none of whom act with the degree of restrain Israel has, making them all more morally transparent occupations), but none of those are talked about nearly as much as the Israeli control over the West Bank.”

      Much to America’s disdain Israel is a social democracy with a left-wing opposition that is as critical of the countries excesses. Beyond the responsibilities a true democracy has to the world, its country and its occupation the circumstances are different to W.Sahara, Tibet and Cyprus.

      Morocco, despite its abuses, has made the occupants citizens [even when most don’t want it, the same is true in Turkish Cypress although it too encourages Turks from the mainland to settle and happily saw most Greek speaking Cypriots flee.

      I agree it is appalling that we will ignore one group over another but at the same time Israel is a special case. BTW I note the number of deaths from HAMAS rockets is relatively low yet receives considerable coverage.

      • I guess you will find a smart comment about anything to further your cause. I kinda missed the voices for the 300000 people of Darfur. But I am sure you will answer that as well. Never mind the 4-5 million dead in the Congo. And where was the Left in Bosnia? Screaming at Clinton to NOT save the Muslims. But I agree, Israel is special.

  6. And before there was the India/Pakistan conflict there was the H/M (Hindu/Muslim) conflict.

    The one-state solution didn’t work for India.

    The two-state solution doesn’t work for India and Pakistan.

    The islamofascist terrorist attack on Mumbai for example and the near nuclear war between India and Pakistan, a conflict over a land dispute a more dire one, another.

  7. Quite interestingly, the Guardian helps us out quite a bit, by noting that stories tagged “Israel” represented the 5th highest of any country specific tag (other than the UK).

    Have you ever stopped to wonder if this has anything to do with the fact that:

    1. Israel is the highest recipient of US aid in the world?
    2. Israel has the 4th most powerful military force in the world and uses it to maintain an occupation?
    3. That Israel has the 4th largets nuclear weapons anrsenal in the world?
    4. That Isael holds the record for the largest number of UN Resolutions and stands in violation of practically all of them?
    5. That Israel is trying to drive the world towards a war with Iran that could devastate the world’s economy?
    6. Anyone running for the Senate, Congress or the White House has to swear their undying love and suport for Israel if they hope to succeed?
    7. Israel is the only country that Vice Presidentail Candidates get to swear their loyalty to in presidential debates?]

    If Israel wants less attention, perhaps it should stop demanding it?

    • “4. That Isael holds the record for the largest number of UN Resolutions and stands in violation of practically all of them?” Shitgo

      I know you are mendacious prig, but this one sentence above is a pearl. You won Goebbels Prize for Moral Inversion

    • The thing about this comment from Shingo is that it’s impossible to tell if it comes from a Guardian reader or a neo-Nazi.

    • How do you measure 2 ? Is there a ruler I can buy to measure military power? Or is it just because Arab are terribly disorganized and frankly crap soldiers?

  8. golo

    I/P is one of the longest-standing conflicts in the world, in a region of crucial geopolitical significance, so it is not surprising that the media cover it extensively;

    Chinese occupation of Tibet? How much coverage does that get in the Gruniad. Has there been one article in the last two years?

    Tibet is an area many times that of the West Bank. Many more people involved too.

    The Guardian is obsessed with the I/P conflict. That is an undeniable fact.

    It doesn’t obsess with Tibet where the next superpower, (at least according to the Guardian) is the culprit.

    Doesn’t obsess with Russian occupation of Chechnya. In fact, I very seldom see any criticism of Russia in The Guardian. Nor any substantial criticism of North Korea either. It is mentioned but is not JUDGMENTAL.

    Why is this?

    • What the Chinese did in/to Tibet is one of the greatest crimes human kind ever committed. The Tibetans were the carriers of a very important active Buddhist culture thousands of years old. The communists destroyed 7000 monasteries containing hundreds of thousands of hand written books. They raped and murdered nuns and monks by the thousands. What was lost forever because of China weighs heavely on humanity.

  9. Shingo

    (1) true, but irrelevant to UK I would think. And almost all the “aid” is military grants that must be spent in the USA. Consider it a program to stimulate the US economy.

    (2) what measure are you using? 70 thousand troops is not excessive by world standards

    (3) how many weapons does Israel have? I’ve seen estimates, no information from GoI. The number is unknown. There has never been a test.

    (4) UNGA resolutions are non binding, that is they have the legal status of a political poll. Israel does not stand in violation of any UNSC resolution.

    (5) Really!!!??? How about using Wikileaks documents that show that KSA and some of the Persian Gulf states are doing this.

    Really, you need a life.

    (6 and 7) ZOG now, ZOG forever? Mush headed ideas if ever I saw one.
    How does this concern UK?

  10. If one bothers to read the “British View of the World” article, it is immediately apparent that the country that dominates in the distorted world view is Britain, not Israel. In fact, Israel isn’t even mentioned in the article !

  11. Of course, a news obsession with Israel does not necessarily mean we are BETTER informed. Journalists with little knowledge of the history of the conflict parachute in, hang out with other journalists, and spout the usual cliches reinforcing the stereotype of cruel Israelis oppressing innocent helpless Arabs in a never-ending loop.
    Apart form brave exceptions such as Khaled Abu Toameh, they hardly ever report on the hundreds of Palestinians in jail or the persecution of Palestinian Christians. They never report on the 50 percent of Israelis who come from Arab or Muslim countries ( somehow they always come from Brooklyn). They never report good news from Israel.

  12. MTC

    A short statistics:
    1. Britain
    2. US
    3. Afghanistan
    4.Iraq
    5.China
    6.Israel

    Taking into account that British troops fight in Iraq and Afghanistan (the Guardian is a British newspaper you know) and the US is an English speaking country plus it is the leading worldpower, putting Israel on the second place among the non-British world directly after the most populated country (one of the leading military and economic powerhouse)
    seems somehow disproportionate – and may be called an obsession.

    So we’re obsessed with our home country, captivated by the US and disproportionately preoccupied with Israel? Maybe. We also produced 604 pieces of content about Apple (349 about the iPhone, 331 about the iPad)

    You say Israel is never mentioned in the article… Could be so. The word in the above sentence starts with “I” and ends with “srael” must be something else then…

  13. Apparently Shingo received some more talking points from Philip Weiss.

    Let’s see…he seems to think the fact that the world’s worst human rights abusers in the world obsessively condemn Israel is something worth taking seriously. Yeah, I guess he’s right, the democratic state of Israel really should take more human rights lessons from Muammar Gaddafi and Kim Jong-il.

    Oh, and he really seems to think that suggesting that the U.S. congress is controlled by the Israel lobby is a unique historical invective against the Jewish community.

    Funny…he likely fancies himself an “independent” thinker, when he’s simply advancing tropes repeated ad nausea by Israel’s enemies for decades.

    • Adam!
      Shingo is ‘progressive’. And he tried crocodile tears when Russia ground Grozny and it’s one million people into he ground. He was so sad he did not eat chocolate for one whole day. It was terrible. The only thing worse than the 300000 dead in Darfur and Grozny was Rachel Corrie. Just terrible I tell you. Down right nasty.
      If you know what I mean?

  14. Adam

    maybe the repeating ad nauseam is not such a bad tactic. Advertising agencies use it all over the world (of course nobody knows how effective their stuff really is i.e. does the intelligent witty stuff boost sales more than the dumb yelling we are the best.

    Of course it is hard to go down that path if one still cares even a wee bit about not coming across like a decidedly unfunny clown, but maybe what works for soap powder works for slander also, if so then maybe we should do a bit of that also.

    I have written a “poem” quite some time ago (never had another idea since then) but I think this one isn’t bad at least for yelling purposes:

    “No matter how you boo and bray
    Israel is here to stay.”

    • Well, Goebbels invented the ad nauseam repetition of the big lie, or at least perfected it into an artform. Some role model that poster has ….

  15. Let’s see…he seems to think the fact that the world’s worst human rights abusers in the world obsessively condemn Israel is something worth taking seriously.

    Adam, I appreciate a debate as much as anyone, but I prefer it when peopel address thingas I have said as opposed to making up straw men arguments and attributing them to me.

    Oh, and he really seems to think that suggesting that the U.S. congress is controlled by the Israel lobby is a unique historical invective against the Jewish community.

    I never said it was unique.

    Funny…he likely fancies himself an “independent” thinker, when he’s simply advancing tropes repeated ad nausea by Israel’s enemies for decades.

    One can be indpendent and agree with prior arguments. Being independent does not require one to be a rejectionist. I happen to agree that the earth is round, and that too is repeated ad nausea.

  16. “No matter how you boo and bray
    Israel is here to stay.”

    I hope it does too Silke, though I know you’d prefer I didn’t say that as it limits the ad hominems you have left to choose from.

    • So, Shitgo, you know you would attract ad hominens, eh? In fact, this is what you wanted anyways, with all the posture of “independent” thinker. If you want abuse, you´ll get it.

  17. The Shingo drone blathers what it has been carefully trained to do:

    “2. Israel has the 4th most powerful military force in the world and uses it to maintain an occupation?”

    http://www.globalfirepower.com/

    Israel comes in at #11

    It’s hard to push a country into the sea that is #11 or #4.

    That’s why Shingo and his islamofascist puppetmasters call it a NAKBA.

    Happy NAKBA Shingo!

  18. Adam – I see you just put up the more illustrative map!

    Good! The glowing colors are even more representative of a trip-like obsession.

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  20. “The city that has the most international journalists after Washington dc is Jerusalem.”

    So, in wishing to show the world that Israel is a democratic country with free speech, what do we get in return? That’s right, the daily piling upon Israel documented by, among others, this site.

    This isn’t paying off. This just isn’t paying off, and what’s more, “turning the other cheek” isn’t a Jewish value. I suggest that, as far as mass media is concerned, Israel be a little less democratic. Start with banning any media agent known to be against Zionism. End, if need be, with Israeli Zionist writers being the only source of information the outside world has for Israel. Yes, it’s undemocratic. No, after decades of abusing Israel’s freedom of the press, I don’t care a bit.

    P.S. Apropos of the Hindu/Muslim conflict: Just as I don’t dignify the local Arab imperialists as “Palestinians,” I don’t give the name “Pakistan” to what is really Muslim-Occupied Western India.

  21. I read that there are typically 800 foreign correspondents in Jerusalem baying for blood to report. Its been disappointingly quiet of late, of course, for the leeches.

    • Most of them sit in the lounges of 5 star hotels and dictate their articles from them.(I’ve observed it with my own eyes.) They report their prejudices and have a good time. Disgraceful!

  22. AKUS, someone needs to write a book about them. The Ugly American made, I believe. quite a difference to the way US diplomacy was carried out.

    But Anyone Here Been Raped and Speaks English? didn’t reform any Israel-haters. Or perhaps came too soon.

  23. Or perhaps had an opposite effect to what was intended. After all, there lots of empathy now for the guilty.

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  25. It’s all the illegal activities that take place is what makes news, size of a country has no relevance. Just like how there’s a household on my street whose residents cause a lot of ruckus with loud music blasting out all day and night long and general anti-social behaviour. People don’t say ‘oh but it’s just 1 household, it only makes up 1/100th of the street why do you concentrate on them so much?’ BECAUSE THEY’RE THE ONES CAUSING TROUBLE! Now you see how irrelevant size is to the issue, it’s that they’re the ones who are trouble.

      • Killing Bin Laden and Awlaki was quite legal. It’s called pursuing a war started by the other side.

        Floyd is talking nonsense, of course.

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  27. Israel gets mentioned a lot because they tend to bomb people a few times a week and that is what we call news. Plus their leaders are always calling for a war on Iran,that is also news. Now I know you sad asses want the world to believe that Israel is some sort of bastion of truth and democracy but the fact is the only people who believe that are rightwing Israelis and rightwing Americans. You can run around trying to stop people telling the truth about Israel calling it anti semitism but the fact is that the tide has turned and Israel has lost the PR war already and it is groups like yours that have been part of their defeat. Thanks.

  28. “Israel gets mentioned a lot because they tend to bomb people a few times a week”

    well if by israel you mean the arab occupants of gaza launching rockets into jewish israel a few times a day, then absolutely. but i thought you didn’t believe gaza was part of israel? and surely you can’t be meaning israel as in the jewish part of israel, because god knows the jewish israelis aren’t bombing the arabs anywhere remotely as often as the arabs are lobbing bombs at them. but wait, what you are really trying to say is that the arabs bombing israel many times per day is not as newsworthy as israel bombing them back every once in a while? but you’re NOT antisemitic? what, how does that work exactly?

  29. To compare the number of news items to a countries size on a map is disingenuous.

    Surely comparing news items to a map where area is defined by GDP per capita would be more meaningful.

  30. When Haaretz isn’t trying to charge me to read more than a sentence, it is deleting evidence of its once free articles. Or is it just the one mentioned in the OP? ;) Like The Guardian, it seems to be on its last legs. What a tragedy that would be for terrorists everywhere that hate Israel?

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