NPR continues to air outrageous lies
By Ali Abunimah
March 30, 2002
Dear NPR News.
The 7 AM ET news bulletin about the passage of a UN Security Council
resolution which last night called on Israel to withdraw its forces from
Palestinian cities, contained the outrageous statement that, "Syria,
which opposes peace with Israel, abstained."
As NPR well knows, Syria is among the Arab League states which at their
summit in Beirut this week unanimously adopted a Saudi plan offering
Israel "comprehensive peace," and "normal relations" in exchange for full
Israeli withdrawal from the occupied territories including southwestern
In recent years, Syria has engaged in several intensive rounds of
negotiation with Israel, most recently at Sheperdstown, West Virginia,
with the stated goal of achieving a peace treaty in accordance with UN
resolution 242. The talks foundered when Israel refused to agree to
withdraw completely from all of occupied southwestern Syria (the Golan
Heights). The present Israeli government has repeatedly affirmed that it
will never agree to withdraw from Syria, and continues to build new Jewish
settlements inside Syrian territory. Hence while it is wholly wrong to say
that Syria "opposes peace with Israel," it would be correct to say that
Israel opposes peace with Syria.
These kinds of ill-informed and propagandistic statements are what bring
NPR's Middle East coverage into disrepute.