There is, of course, no inherent problem in including the commentary of partisans or activists. They can provide viewers with context, giving them competing viewpoints on contentious issues. However, CNN’s failure to properly identify activists or to provide counterbalancing voices goes well beyond the line of objective storytelling.
CNN has a problem with Jerusalem’s history. The network apparently views the utter destruction of the city, including the Second Temple – a historic event of great significance to all three Abrahamic religions – as just not as important to the story of Jerusalem as…Cleopatra.
In addressing the Six-Day War, CNN accentuated even further its habit throughout the series of distorting events to portray Arabs as powerless victims. In some cases, this narrative is laid absurdly bare, such as when the narrator tells viewers “[t]he [Jordanian] shelling is meant to target Jews in West Jerusalem, but it’s the Palestinian Arabs living in the area that are left defenseless.” Yes – CNN suggested that when Arabs were trying to kill Jews, it was really Arabs who were the victims.
Terrorist groups and autocrats routinely use intimidation to influence press coverage to their advantage. As CAMERA noted in a recent Washington Examiner op-ed, the Taliban, for example, has a long history of threatening journalists. And, as a recent assault by Fatah against two Washington Post reporters illustrates, the practice extends from Kabul to Ramallah and beyond.
Beginning on July 18, CNN has been airing each Sunday a new, six-part series entitled “Jerusalem: City of Faith and Fury.” As of this writing, Parts 1-5 have been broadcast and have been seriously marred by factual inaccuracies and one-sided narratives omitting vital information. Many of the “experts” featured in the series have clear histories of anti-Israel activism and partisanship. A preliminary sample of how disconnected the CNN series is from reality and objectivity follows.
Following communication with CAMERA Arabic, CNN’s Arabic website corrected two reports that had charged Jewish visitors to the Temple Mount with "storming" the al-Aqsa Mosque.
CNN's reliably anti-Israel correspondent Ben Wedeman claims Jerusalem has never been more divided, apparently forgetting that Jerusalem was sliced down the middle by rolls of barbed wire and armed border guards, with Jews denied access to the city's Jewish Quarter and their holy sites.
Using an Israeli film as a base point, Amanpour’s panel discussion echoed Palestinian propaganda. Panelist Helal criticized recent U.S. Middle East diplomats, adding pejoratively, “they were all Jewish.”
Christian Amanpour's softball interview with Iranian FM Zarif on Iran's nuclear activity and belligerence in the region is a study in contrast with her hostile cross-examination of Israeli politician Gideon Saar who dared dispute her fallacious assertion that Israeli is legally responsible for vaccinating Palestinians.
Fareed Zakaria’s Sunday broadcasts often misinform about Israel. Such was the case in the discussion about the COVID vaccinating experience of various countries. Zakaria mentioned Israel’s success but then added a caveat.