Friday, 15 July 2011

It's All In The Numbers

It's very easy to give a misleading impression in the media. Most often, this is done not by altering or inventing the facts, but by simply omitting the ones that you don't want people to see.

Veteran smear-merchant Karl Vick does this in his blog post published at the TIME website yesterday. He titles the post "Poll Finds Palestinians Disenchanted with Hamas, Iran and the Peace Process". He goes on to describe a new face-to-face poll - conducted in Arabic - of 1,010 Palestinians just published by Bill Clinton's former pollster Stan Greenberg, providing, among others, the following findings of the study:

  • "Hamas, disapproved of by two of three, including in Gaza, where it has ruled since 2007"
  • "Iran, which 77 percent of Palestinians see negatively, an uptick in villainy likely attributable to its role in suppressing the Arab Spring uprising in neighboring Syria, if not the demands of its own people after stealing the last election."
  • "Most also oppose firing rockets into Israeli cities, and call the murder of a settler family in Itamar 'wrong.'"
  • "And by two to one, Palestinians favor ending Israel's 44-year military occupation through negotiations rather than by violent resistance."
Vick even describes as the "most striking finding" of the poll...the "Palestinians' focus on daily life".

Apparently not considered by Vick to be striking or even noteworthy findings are the following, pulled from a much more balanced summary of the survey at the Jerusalem Post, which he never even mentions:

Seventy-two percent backed denying the thousands of years of Jewish history in Jerusalem, 62% supported kidnapping IDF soldiers and holding them hostage, and 53% were in favor or teaching songs about hating Jews in Palestinian schools.

When given a quote from the Hamas Charter about the need for battalions from the Arab and Islamic world to defeat the Jews, 80% agreed. Seventy-three percent agreed with a quote from the charter (and a hadith, or tradition ascribed to the prophet Muhammad) about the need to kill Jews hiding behind stones and trees.

But if you only listen to Vick, the "most striking" thing about this study is the Palestinians' views on unemployment, followed closely by their "disapproval" of Hamas (but not, apparently, its hateful and pro-genocidal Charter) and that group's particular methods for obtaining the same desired outcome: the destruction of Israel. After all, the poll also revealed that while the majority of Palestinians disapprove of a two-state solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, a majority (66%) said that the "real goal should be to start with a two-state solution but then move to it all being one Palestinian state."

Meaning there would be no more Israel - merely an Arab State governed by Muslims with Jews as dhimmi subjects.

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