Flour massacre

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By FRANCISCO FERNANDES LADEIRA*

News lies about Palestinian geopolitics

In recent days, Grupo Globo vehicles – such as National Journal and the portal G1 – used the euphemisms “tumult” and “confusion” to report the massacre promoted by Israel, which killed around one hundred Palestinians who were waiting for the delivery of humanitarian aid in Gaza.

Even other press organizations linked to the interests of the status quo Western, like the The country, were not so bold as to hide the real nature of this regrettable event (which has now gone down in history as the “Flour Massacre”). “Israel shoots at a crowd trying to get food”, emphasized a headline in the Spanish newspaper. In turn, the head of European Union foreign policy, Josep Borell, classified the incident as a “totally unacceptable carnage”.

However, the euphemisms used to describe the “Flour Massacre” are not the only resources of manipulation and falsification of reality used by the international news reports of the Marinho family company. In fact, the coverage of the Globo (and the mainstream media in general) about the current escalation of the genocide promoted by Israel offer us examples of the worst type of journalism possible.

The narrative created in the hegemonic press, about the beginning of antagonism between Palestinians and Israelis having October 7, 2023 as its landmark, with the Hamas offensive against southern Israel, already hides at least seventy-six years of ethnic cleansing promoted by the Zionist State. Thus, the false discourse of “War between Israel and Hamas” is created, legitimizing the killing carried out by the Israeli army in Gaza as “self-defense”.

But it is not enough to remove the historicity of a given focus of tension, limiting it to its immediacy; it is necessary to resort to the so-called “adjective journalism”. In this sense, Hamas is labeled as “terrorist” (when neither the UN nor Brazil recognize such a classification). Israel, on the other hand, is the “only democracy in the Middle East” (another fallacy, given that a State where its inhabitants do not have the same rights – that is, they are divided into first and second class – could never be considered as “ democratic").

Proving that the main Brazilian press vehicles are more Zionist than their foreign counterparts, the with the BBC, one of the greatest symbolic pillars of British imperialism, for example, does not use the term “terrorist” to refer to Hamas in its articles.

Claiming the principle of impartiality, the world affairs editor of this communication network, John Simpson, states that “terrorism is a loaded word, which people use to refer to an organization of which they morally disapprove. It is not the function of with the BBC tell people who to support and who to condemn – who are the good guys and who are the bad guys.”

However, contrary to what John Simpson said, here in Brazil, the hegemonic media seems to have the function, precisely, of telling people who to support and who to condemn, who are the good guys and who are the bad guys. In this journalism of judgment of values ​​and ready-made opinions, the “good guy” is any geopolitical actor linked to the imperialist interests of Washington and allies; the “criminal” is whoever minimally opposes imperialist rule.

No relevant world political leader condemned Lula's comparison between Zionist actions in Gaza and the Nazi regime in Germany (except, of course, Benjamin Netanyahu). But, in reality manipulated by the hegemonic Tupiniquim press, this statement by the Brazilian president would have had negative repercussions across the planet. Thus, the opinions of the writers of The Globe, Sheet e Estadão replaced the international community.

This obsession with forging a (non-existent) global condemnation of Lula's speech (which means, in practice, forcing diplomatic isolation of our country) led to an embarrassing scene. When trying, during an exclusive interview, to get the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, to publicly condemn the Brazilian president (even appealing to the fact that he is Jewish), the reporter from Globo, Raquel Krähenbühl, took a historic reversal.

Heard the following statement: “We have real disagreement about this, and friends can have disagreements. […] I know that President Lula is motivated by people's suffering and wants to see it end. Just like us. We also have that in common.”

Regarding the large number of deaths among children in Gaza, due to Israeli attacks, Renata Lo Prete, anchor of the Globo newspaper, has an unusual explanation. Many children die because the age pyramid in the Palestinian territory points to a predominance of young people. That simple! The fact that Israel indiscriminately targets civilian and military targets is, of course, beside the point.

Remembering the words of the late Alberto Dinis, the Brazilian press transforms mere reports into true editorials. This means that journalistic coverage, which should be limited to transmitting information or reporting facts, becomes mechanisms for conveying a certain political agenda.

In the case of Palestinian geopolitics, the stances of the Globo and their counterparts went from being simple journalistic coverage to becoming grotesque planets of the Zionist war agenda. To do this, they resort to “non-news” (such as insinuating that Lula mentioned the word “Holocaust” when comparing Israel’s recent actions in Gaza to Nazism), inappropriate use of adjectives such as “terrorist” or even resorting to fake news (just remember the “babies beheaded by Hamas”).

In short, when it comes to disinformation about what is happening in the world, the Bolsonarista WhatsApp groups still have a lot to learn from what they deliriously call the “extreme press”.

*Francisco Fernandes Ladeira is a doctoral candidate in geography at Unicamp. Author, among other books, of The ideology of international news (CRV). [https://amzn.to/49F468W]


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