Thursday, October 27, 2005

Will This Dig at Abbas Survive?

One phenomenon I've noticed recently -- though I doubt it is anything new -- is that New York Times reports that appear online appear to be changed, not always for the better, by the time they hit the print edition the following day. For example, a rare reference to Palestinian obligations under the Road Map was deleted by editors.

So let's see what happens to the story that appeared online today by Steve Erlanger, who usually adheres closely to Times policy. Not this time.

Erlanger correctly points out something you rarely if ever have seen in the Times:

Mr. Abbas himself criticized the bombing on practical, not moral grounds, saying that it "harms the Palestinian interests and could widen the cycle of violence, chaos, extremism and bloodshed." He has said previously that all responses to Israeli violations of the cease-fire must be considered collectively by the Palestinians.

But in a speech to the Palestinian parliament on Wednesday, he refrained from condemning Islamic Jihad. Even when Islamic Jihad has taken credit for terrorist attacks, like the suicide bombings in Tel Aviv Feb. 25 and Netanya on July 12. . .

It's rare to read stuff like this in the Times, which usually plays up the myth of Palestinian moderation. Ordinarily, as it did in its story on the bombing today, the Times obediently prints Palestinian ritual condemnations of suicide bombings -- without pointing out what Erlanger just did, that they rarely condemn the morality of attacks on civilians.

Let's see if this survives the Times editorial process this afternoon......

UPDATE: It didn't.
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