Western press agencies willing victims of Israeli censorship

On the insistence of Colonel Sima Vasknin-Gil, head of Israeli military censorship, the Western press has agreed to give an incomplete version of the latest events in the Near East. Here are the facts : Hezbollah has demanded for years now the release of prisoners held by Israel, such as Samir el Kantar, improsonned since 1978, Nassim Nisr and Yahia Skaff, imprisonned since 1982. On innumerable occasions it has made known that it, in turn, won’t hesitate to capture Israeli soldiers- if they enter Lebanon- and to use them as bargaining counters. Quite deliberately, Tsahal sent a commando unit into Lebanese territory around Aita al Chaab. It was attacked by Hezbollah, who took two prisonners. Israel then made out that they had been attacked and attacked Lebanon. Hezbollah, which was preparing for an israeli attack which everyone new was inevitable after the Syrian withdrawal, fired some medium range missiles at Israel.

According to international law, Tsahal has violated the sovereignty of Lebanon(as they do habitually either by sea or air). Meanwhile Hezbollah has taken justice into their own hands in place of the Lebanese state which has never really recovered from the civil war and the Israeli occupation.

Obeying an injunction by the Israeli censorship, press agencies and media outlets with accredited journalists in Lebanon have desisted from informing their readers of the place where the Israelis were captured. They haven’t actually lied, they have just kept quiet.

Most journalists use the word “kidnap” to refer to the captured soldiers. This underlines the fact that Hezbollah isn’t a regular army. Meanwhile the Israelis also use this term, but , in this case to indicate the right which they claim enter lebanese territory.By studiously failing to clarify the context of these events, the Western media reinforces Israeli propaganda.)

By the same logic, our colleagues have also agreed not to report attacks by Hamas and Hezbollah against Israeli military targets.So the western public is only informed of civilian casualies in Israel and of stretgic(military)targets in Lebanon. All this gives the impression that “the Arabs” are both cruel( they kill civilians)and incompetent( they don’t succeed in striking military targets), and that the outcome of the war is a foregone conclusion.

For our part, we refuse to conform to the exigencies of the Israeli army.As a result, our special correspondent to the Middle -East, Silvia Cattori has been refused official accreditation and is unable to move around the country seeking witnesses to what is happening. Still, the Voltaire Network is able to continue its work thanks to the many contacts that it has on the ground.