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Thursday, January 07, 2010


The IAEA and...Israel?

Did you know that on Sept. 18 of last year, the IAEA passed a resolution that for the first time expressed "concern about the Israeli nuclear capabilities" and requested that Israeli's nuclear program be placed under international oversight? I'm pretty sure I didn't; I certainly didn't write about it at the time. There was an AP article, but I don't remember seeing it in the paper I read, or online at the time. I only just learned about this from an article in the latest issue of FAIR's EXTRA!, in an article (not online) comparing the (non-existent) coverage of this event in the New York Times with their coverage of the (also non-existent) Iran nuclear weapons program. Indeed, searching The New York Times and the Washington Post for "Israel IAEA" produces in each case a series of articles on the Iranian nuclear program, and not a single one about Israeli nuclear weapons or the IAEA resolution.

The article notes that, while the Times (and, as far as I can tell, the Washington Post as well, and no doubt most press outlets) didn't print one word about the IAEA resolution, just one week later, when Iran told the IAEA about its planned nuclear enrichment site in Qom (still under construction and more than the six months away from introduction of nuclear material which was the deadline for Iran to reveal the site), a torrent of media coverage followed. In just the week that followed, the Times published a whopping 32 pieces on Iran's nuclear program, eight of them on the front page, along with two editorials and multiple op-eds.

Needless to say, in this land of the "free press," the effect of all the remaining "free media" was not to balance this completely unbalanced picture, but to reinforce it.

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