Like hummus joints studding a Middle Eastern metropolis, false references to Tel Aviv as shorthand for Israel are a fixture of the Arabic media landscape, experts repeatedly told CAMERA prior to the 2018 launch of CAMERA Arabic. This seemingly immutable feature is true even for Arabic-language reports published in Western media outlets which do not accept that false assertion in English and other languages, the media professionals said.
A second takeaway from the countless meetings with Arabic media insiders was that there is no body or organization holding Western media outlets accountable for their misreporting in Arabic, and no one systematically communicating to English-language editors the alternate reality reporting of their Arabic-speaking colleagues, employees of their very own media institutions. Nor is there any culture of correcting erroneous reporting appearing in Arabic-language reports of Western media outlets.
Some five years later, following the establishment and the growing successes of CAMERA Arabic, the second point is no longer true. CAMERA Arabic has clearly established itself as the leading (and only) organization systematically monitoring, prompting an impressive 41 Arabic corrections at leading Western media outlets last year.
As for the first Arabic media fixture, CAMERA Arabic puts the brakes on the non-stop formulation falsely casting the “non-stop city,” ie Tel Aviv, as Israel’s capital.
During the months of August and September 2022, CAMERA Arabic prompted 17 corrections at four media outlets which falsely referred to Tel Aviv as Israel’s seat of government. Below is a comprehensive list of the corrections.
Deutsche Welle Arabic (Germany) corrected eight reports on Aug. 25:
Aug. 17: “years of severe tension which dominated the relations between
Ankara and Tel Avivthe two countries”
BBC Arabic (UK) – corrected throughout August and September
July 20th (before/after): “High-ranked American officials have disclosed that Washington actually laid out a roadmap for normalization between Saudi Arabia and Israel, the details of which shall be presented to
Tel AvivIsrael and Riyadh [BBC Arabic opted not to replace ‘Riyadh’ with ‘Saudi Arabia’]”
Al Hurra (US) – all corrected August 26
I-24 News Arabic (Israel) – corrected Sept. 6