Duma: A Misshapen-Media Narrative

Inaccuracy is of course the issue when instances of bias are perceived in the media, but these problems often manifest as omissions of fact, rather than outright lies. The mainstream media tends to be highly selective in terms of which stories it chooses to report, where coverage of events damaging to one side tend to be greatly emphasised. Within this selective coverage, there is a further layer of inaccuracy: odd omissions of information that would assist the reader or viewer. These absences include substantive omissions of fact, and a shaping of narrative as stories emerge. When judging such narratives, lapses of basic context are most revealing. A balanced report may otherwise lead the consumer toward a contrary viewpoint to the stances of the journalists/editors, or media institution, involved in a given news story.

The July 31st arson attack on an Arab-Palestinian home in Duma, Judea and Samaria/West Bank, tragically led to the death of a child of 18 months. Jewish individuals are suspected of the attack, as Hebrew script was found outside the house, and media outlets have reported upon recent disputes between the regional Jewish populace and the Israeli authorities.

However, there is also a not unprecedented but more remote possibility that the attack originates with another quarter, to further stoke Arab-Palestinian violence, given that the attack coincided rather neatly with an Arab-Palestinian “day of rage”.

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