The Demise Of Cinema Jenin And The Art Of Biased Reporting

AFP reports on the demise of Cinema Jenin, a formerly successful Cinema relaunched 6 years ago by BDS-holes Roger Waters and Bianca Jagger.

But the report itself is a further example of the art of biased reporting and demise of objective mainstream media journalism, with the truth seemingly buried between the lines and outright lies peddled explicitly.

cinema_jeninOne of the best-known cinemas in the Palestinian territories closed Wednesday after running out of money, organisers said, six years after a grand reopening ceremony backed by international celebrities.

Demolition work had begun on the Cinema Jenin after it failed to attract enough customers in recent years, said Marcus Vetter, one of those behind the 2010 relaunch supported by rock musician Roger Waters and human rights campaigner Bianca Jagger.

The cinema, the last in Jenin in the northern West Bank, was also used as a cultural centre and theatre but is now expected to be replaced by a mall.

“It is a very disappointing and sad moment,” Vetter, a German director, told AFP, explaining the heirs of the original owners had sold it for about 1.7 million euros ($1.8 million).

Built in 1957, Cinema Jenin was considered to be one of the largest and most impressive cinemas in the Palestinian territories but it shut down after the first intifada, or uprising, against Israel began in 1987.

Ok, stop there. This statement written in the passive form seems to be also masking an important truth: Cinema Jenin’s problems began with the palestinian-initiated campaign of violence and terrorism against Israelis. I assume Israeli visitors to the Cinema were a main income source for it, which was cut off as their lives were imperilled by the palestinians. Just like what happened with the palestinian economy as they bit the hand that fed them.

But instead of dealing with this, the report jumps to the relaunch, finding an anti-Israel slant and blaming us.

The 2010 relaunch was the brainchild of Vetter and Ismael Khatib, a Palestinian who donated his 11-year-old son’s organs to save Israeli children after the boy was shot dead by an Israeli soldier in 2005.

Asked why the cinema failed to attract clients, Vetter said it was a mixture of conservative attitudes and fears that going to this specific theatre amounted to accepting Israel’s nearly 50-year occupation of the West Bank.

“People were not ready to really go there. They were also maybe a little bit scared how it would be perceived if they go.”

What a stretch for an excuse! I find it amazing that the demise of the Cinema is somehow turned on Israel, even though Israel did not impede the Cinema in any way. It is reminiscent of those who blame Israel for the terrorism of palestinians, as if the latter lack any agency to make moral decisions.

About the “mixture of conservative attitudes”, the report does expand a bit:

In 2012, the Israeli left-wing newspaper Haaretz said rumours of a so-called “lack of modesty” at a neighbouring guesthouse where volunteers stayed also damaged the cinema’s reputation.

Euphemistic, with no elaboration. But one can imagine this means something along the lines of couples engaging in lewd behavior. Which I am guessing is way more of a reason for the newly-released Cinema’s demise than the lame “fears that going amounted to accepting Israel’s nearly 50-year occupation of the West Bank.” Especially considering this little fact:

Juliano Mer-Khamis, a well-known actor from a mixed Jewish-Arab Israeli family who himself had been involved in the cinema, was shot dead in the city in 2011 by unknown gunmen.

So while this report is ostensibly about the demise of Cinema Jenin, it is really about the palestinians shooting themselves in the foot, and the media aiding and abetting them.


David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media

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