For a profound look at Israeli cynicism regarding war and human loss from the inside, I cannot recommend enough a good read of one of the latest articles in the Jerusalem Post: Anglos voice Israel’s case to foreign media. Here are just a few teaser quotes.
Anglo-Israelis know how to better shape a message because they know how its received, Spigelman argued. “We can understand how things sound to an international audience because we were once part of the international audience.”
That knowledge is what leads the IDF Spokesman’s Office to release different tapes of army operations to local and foreign journalists. The former might receive a heave dose of the air force destroying bridges to reinforce success. But to internationals, Spigelman said, “It looks like we’re destroying roads people take to get to work.”
So instead, he explained, they got footage of rocket launchers being used in Kafr Kana. “They needed more convincing that Kafr Kana was a hotbed of terror, whereas in Israel, they know that. They’ve been receiving the Katyushas up north.”
“For an American, you might want to be more aggressive, more vocal, more victorious in tone,” Ovits said. “For a European, you might want to emphasize humanitarian [aspects], because pictures of tanks… bring up very negative emotions.”
If the right accent helps, the wrong accent can be a “turn-off,” according to Spigelman. He said a “slick” American wouldn’t seem authentic to Europeans the way an officer with a slight Israeli accent would, making the latter a better choice.
It looks like the Israelis read Goebbels private diaries carefully.
We certainly wouldn’t want people abroad to see the bridges pointlessly blown up, preventing people from going to work or doing their shopping.
Fortunately (unlike in Iraq where the policy of screening embedded journalists and indiscriminately shooting independent journalists succeeded in limiting information), we have other sources for our footage and our news than the IDF.