Watch the 30-second commercial we produced about the U.S. role in Israel’s recent war on the Gaza Strip, which was censored by DIRECTV.
Palestinian journalists caught between Israeli firing and Hamas threats
Download the report: Rapport_Gaza_janvier_2009_GB.pdf
Report Gaza – January 2009
‘Set against hundreds of casualties, including many civilians, the toll of violations of press freedom during operation ‘Cast Lead’ in Gaza, might appear small. But news was another casualty of this war. The sealing off of the Gaza Strip, which was the full responsibility of the Israeli authorities, is unacceptable and disturbing. Beyond this conflict, control of news in time of war has become a military objective throughout the world. Now it has become the norm’, said, as it released its report on violations of press freedom during the Israeli military offensive in the Gaza Strip, in January 2009.
17 February, 2009
Last week, the Media Standards Trust (MST), an independent charity, published a report assessing the British media’s capacity to regulate itself under the leadership of the Press Complaints Commission (PCC). The MST report found that the current system is neither independent nor effective. Martin Moore, director of the MST comments:
“The current system is paid for by the newspaper industry, its rules are written by working newspaper editors, and almost half the Commission itself is made up of newspaper and magazine editors.
“You would be forgiven, as a member of the public, for thinking that the system was geared more towards protecting the interests of the press than the public.” (Moore, ‘A More Accountable Press – Part 1: The Need for Reform,’ Media Standards Trust, February 9, 2009; www.mediastandardstrust.org/medianews/blogs/blogdetails.aspx?sid=30997)
The results of the PCC’s work speak for themselves: if a member of the public makes a complaint against the press, he or she has about a 250:1 chance of getting an adjudication in his or her favour. Moore describes these as “pretty terrible odds”
Over the last two months, cholera has broken out in a number of provinces in South Africa. Thousands of people have been infected and over fifty people have already died. Initially, a number of politicians, including parliamentarians from the right-wing Democratic Alliance (DA), tried to blame Zimbabweans — who were fleeing the economic meltdown, Mugabe’s repressive regime, and a cholera outbreak in their own country — for the outbreak of the disease in South Africa. After several weeks, the Health Department made it clear that the cholera outbreak in South Africa was not related to the one that had occurred in Zimbabwe. Rather, the outbreak was linked to poor sanitation services and a lack of access to clean water. Nonetheless, the Department of Health was not willing to go any further and discuss the underlying reasons why, fifteen years after apartheid, people still don’t have toilets or clean drinking water. Of course, the real reasons for this dire situation which the Health Department is loathe to discuss is that the ANC government has completely failed to address the inequalities of apartheid and have rather embarked on the privatization of water and sanitation services.