Thursday, February 24, 2011

"Rocket falls on Beersheba," What? Like Rain?

I hate these sorts of titles and headlines.  The Jerusalem Post's article on the Arab attack on Beersheva made things worse by adding "Following Katyusha fire in Negev..." Do these things happen all by themselves, like spontaneous combustion?  Nu?  Who launched these weapons at Israel?  I stress the who, because people, not chance, not G-d are guilty of attacking Israel and its civilians.

But as much as I dislike the headline, at least it's big news in the Jerusalem Post.  I just checked the New York Times which at this moment, hours after the Arab attack on the main city of Israel's south, there isn't a mention.  Surprisingly, BBC has a better title to their article than the Jerusalem Post:
Gaza militants fire rockets at Beersheba, Israel

Of course I disagree with their use of the word "militants," but at least they rightly put the blame on the Gazans.

That's much better than ynet:

Grad rocket hits Beersheba
Gaza terror reaches Negev capital for first time since Operation Cast Lead. Grad rocket explodes in Beersheba house yard...
No people seem to be involved in their version of the attack. It reads like one of those science fiction stories in which computers take control.

Arutz 7 got it right with:
Terrorists Fire Two Rockets at Be'er Sheva; IDF Retaliates

And lastly, at least for me, will be Haaretz's top story at this moment:
Grad rockets fired at Be'er Sheva for first time since Gaza war

One missile hit building in residential area, causing damage; no casualties reported; Palestinians report Israeli air strike retaliation, wounding two Islamic Jihad militants.
Grammatically, at least, someone/something is blamed for firing the rockets, though we're not specifically told who or what.

An important headline should never be written in passive, because as news it must indicate an active subject. A good news title must be clear, and the first sentence should summarize the story giving a Who, What, When and Where. Too many news titles leave out the "Who," because they don't want to connect the Arabs, Gazans, or what they call "Palestinians" with terrorism and violence.


Risa Tzohar said...

Right on Batya!
Couldn't be better said!

Batya said...

Risa, thanks

Hadassa said...

It's all part of the "cycle of violence" that the world keeps saying must stop. Again, there is NO mention of WHO is responsible for continuing the cycle.

Noise Blockers and Other Remedies said...

They use this phrase almost each time. It's almost as frequently used as *normativi*. Maybe it's the same reporter.

Anonymous said...

"Have emunah", is what Rav Lazer Brody teaches. It's Hashem who brought upon us these rockets. He allowed the rockets to rain. So, what's the message? We need to repent.

Batya said...

Yes, Hadassa, "cycle of violence" implies that we and the Arabs are equally guilty.

PQJ, yes, they all copy the same mistakes.

a, emunah won't save us from rockets, sorry. G-d wants us to work hard in this world.

Hadassa said...

King David, who wrote Psalms, was also a highly trained warrior, with war experience. I like to make that point when people think that we're supposed to just pray, read Psalms and improve ourselves. Of course if we're not worthy, we won't win the wars, but we are supposed to fight them.

Keli Ata said...

The second headline is more accurate and I agree with you on the use of the word militant when it should be terrorists.

But progress for the BBC.

Not that I have many opportunities offline to write about Israel, I remain confused about Gaza. Should I describe it as southern Israel? Is Gaza legally still part of Israel?

There's no "Palestinian" state so I couldn't use that term, and I don't know if it's still considered a part of Israel.

Gaza--a place in limbo. Very sad when you watch videos of Gaza Beach and the tregedy it would be to give away such beautiful land by the sea.

Batya said...

Yes, this idea that holy people don't fight isn't Jewish. Reading the Bible, Joshua, G-d made it clear that He only helps when the leaders lead the battle.

Keli, Israel isn't in Gaza per se. We gave it an independence of sorts.

Noise Blockers and Other Remedies said...

I want you all to seal this in your minds - and ask yourselves, how much of this do we do in our own lives when it comes to dominion over others -

*There is only one thing Arabs understand. One thing and one thing alone - domination. Whatever it takes, killing, raping, suicide bombing, bestiality, pedophilia - it's all about domination vs submissiveness. And it's so funny and absurd because they hypocritically and bold-faced lie about their religion being one of submissiveness to Allah - but apparently that gives them free reign to wreak havoc EVERYWHERE like bloody mental cases in domineering everything and everyone till their appetite for destruction is satisfied.*

Hadassa said...

Keli, the term you use depends on the audience. The Gaza Strip is the only term that is at all neutral. A few facts: The Gaza Strip is part of Biblical Israel. The borders of the Gaza Strip are totally artificial and have no significance in Jewish law, and it is interesting that the borders of the area that the Jews never fully wrested from the Philistines are extremely similar. The Gaza Strip is part of the western Negev, which is part of southern Israel. The region may also be called coastal Negev. The State of Israel never annexed the Gaza Strip so it has never been part of the State of Israel.

Leah, Maaleh Adumim said...

Hadassah, excellent observation about King David!

Batya, "coastal Negev" - I like that!

Batya said...

Leah, it's Hadassa's.

Hadassa said...

Batya, Leah, it's not mine either. I can't remember exactly what the project was called, but there was a project in Gush Katif called the Western Negev (...) and it was described as being in the western Negev and the coastal Negev.

Batya said...

OK, but here, it's yours.