Bloody TV has been
daily fare for many Palestinian households. Gore and violence have been
the schedule for the day and night. Some say it’s even become so
prevalent that it’s become boring.
Mahmoud Abbas has informed TV personnel to tone down the murder and
mayhem. Enough praise to martyrs. Enough singing of blood songs. Enough
minute-by-minute coverage of Abbas’ political moves.
In the days of Yasser
Arafat it was common for Palestinian TV to cover practically his every
move — all day long. It created an Arafat cult, especially given to
praising Arafat as the ultimate political leader. Now Abbas tells TV to
give coverage only when there is a significant happening taking place
So it goes in
Abbas’ attempts to come into the sane center. May his approaches have
success. God knows that the Palestinians, particularly the youth, have
been indoctrinated in "Kill a Jew — Go to Heaven" so that to
blow one’s self up — along with as many Jewish bodies as possible —
has become the warped religious craze of too many fanatic Muslims.
Therefore, for Abbas
now to take this chance for TV viewing reform is not just a passing fancy.
It is a major turn in the peace road regarding the use of TV for political
According to London
Sunday Telegraph Inigo Gilmore, "Newly elected President Mahmoud
Abbas has ordered Palestinian television to cleanse its screens of bloody
imagery to conform with a new mood of conciliation in the region.
suicide bombers, or ‘martyrs’ as they were known, have given way to
‘feel-good’ nature programs and romantic films. Instead of referring
to ‘martyr operations,’ suicide bombings are described more neutrally
leadership of Israel, Palestine, Egypt and Jordan meeting shortly, Abbas
wants to put the peace face on the gathering, at least as far as the
Palestinian Authority is concerned. Therefore, reversing the blood flow on
PA TV will be a pleasant start.
Instead of the blood
pictures punctuating endlessly PA TV, there are now kiddy videos showing
animals scampering through the woods. There are romantic films instead of
war and shoot-em-up flicks. That in itself should bring some mental health
changes to Palestinian viewers and hopefully a real-life change in the
youth’s attitude regarding life in general.
said that he does not want a screen full of blood,’ said Radwan Abu
Ayash, head of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corp. ‘We must avoid bloody
things, which are not a good image for our people.
"’He also said
that he does not want songs praising him or for us to report on all his
activities -- only if there is some news value. He wanted a 'free screen'
and said that all sides should have the right to talk. These are big
changes. We are broadcasting more traditional music, rather than martial
music. Even our words are less provocative. We are trying to be as
peaceful as possible.’
salute Abu Mazen's understanding of the need to make the broadcasting
moderate, because the old style under Arafat was not only dull, but it
brought incitement and hatred,’ said Ibrahim Wahbeh, a Bethlehem
Let’s hope for the
best. Surely revamping PA TV for civil viewing is a healthy start.