CCTV FOLLIES 10.9 CHINA PLAYS SIDES
News presented way out of context -CCTV focuses on terror of Israeli bombing -No coverage of casualties in Israel -No condemnation of Hamas attack -Israel declares war -US is meddling again!
The foreign news on Xinwen Lianbo on Monday evening in China opens with a first hand report from inside Gaza by a local journalist specially contracted to work for CCTV. The segment is introduced with a noisy bang and the Israel bombing footage seen below.
“The Israeli military bombed many scores of office blocks and apartment buildings…
Emergency rescue vehicles affiliated with a hospital under the Health Ministry…
…were also victims of targeted strikes”
CCTV narrator: According to reports….
Israeli bombing has destroyed over 800 targets in Gaza
The chyron says that over 1200 are dead, over 5,100 wounded.
At least 70000 Palestinians are seeking shelter in schools and other sites
(footage of a school being bombed by Israel was in yesterday’s report)
And now for some belated background.
CCTV mentions that Hamas fired some rockets…
The massive surprise rocket attack is not denied but made to look trivial on CCTV as it is reduced to wispy jet-trails.
(There is no footage of the carnage that followed. Zero coverage of Israeli suffering, let alone dead or wounded. No coverage of the Hamas terror rampage or the decimation of an outdoor dance party where 200 revelers were shot in cold blood)
Quoting a Hamas-affiliated spokesman, the news reader announces that the armed wing of Hamas struck several places including…
…near Ben Gurion airport
and the southern town of Ashkelon.
(as far as I can tell, the bullet smashed window and the bombed building below are the two main shots showing damage on the Israeli side of the border.)
Israel said Hamas fighters remain in Israel and the spokesman acknowledges that Hamas breached the border at 7 or 8 places.
The next three scenes of Israel troops in combat gear are used to illustrate Israel’s declaration of war.
On the evening of October 7th…Israel officially declared itself to be in a state of war.
The USS Ford aircraft carrier, shown in file footage below, is en route to the Eastern Mediterranean. CCTV appears to take great interest in this matter
In a slanted editorial pattern that is well-established on CCTV based on its daily Ukraine coverage—Kremlin-curated footage and pro-Kremlin editorializing is followed by one or two out-of-focus shots of Ukraine and then quickly jumps to shots of US military equipment while condemning US and NATO as the root cause—you can plainly see China play sides.
After opening with a long, sympathetic, clearly-filmed report from the side China favors, there is a short, incoherent, lacklustre report about the side China disfavors and then slam, bang, it’s all the fault of the US anyway.
Here it manifests itself with the opening segment in Gaza showing all the horrible destruction caused by Israel as related from a jaded Palestinian point of view (they bomb ambulances, don’t they?) followed by a muddled report on Israel which is in turn followed by a quick jump to the fearsome US Navy and Air Force and its meddling military might.
Bringing US air power to the scene of conflict…
A Palestianian spokesman roundly condemns the US for getting involved in an invasion of Palestine.
CCTV does not attempt to explain the footage here; it just uses the ambulance and rescue scenes as backdrop to China’s UN statement.
China speaks out for peace at the UN….
China is deeply concerned over the current escalation of tensions and violence between Palestine and Israel…
We call on relevant parties to remain calm, exercise restraint…
and immediately end the hostilities to protect civilians and avoid further deterioration of the situation.
The camera cuts very quickly from bombs over Gaza to this next scene which looks like a continuation of the Mideast carnage but it’s actually earthquake damage in Afghanistan!
The chyron that comes up next belatedly clarifies the matter…
Earthquake in northern Afghanistan has over 2445 casualties…
Finally a look at Xinwen Lianbo’s partners in the print world. Xinhua enjoys the same authoritative news status as CCTV’s Xinwen Lianbo, while China Daily has an important diplomatic role to play in fielding external propaganda.
Mirroring the China first priorities of today’s TV news (the report on Gaza and Israel was buried near the 30 minute mark at the bottom of a long series of slush stories in the video news pile) Xinhua and China Daily portray the conflagration in the Mideast as a minor sideshow. Minor though it might be, China does address it, portraying itself as the lighthouse of clarity, compassion and peace while the West is divided by the issue.
Some of the same prevailing prejudices and the not-so-subtle playing of sides is evident in the state print media as well.
The print reports are more credible than the Xinwen Lianbo report in the sense that they at least minimally acknowledge the cause and effect of the Hamas “surprise attack” coming first, followed by Israel bombing strikes, whereas CCTV creates the airy illusion that Israel just starting bombing Gaza to smithereens out of nowhere for no particular reason (and targeting emergency vehicles) because that’s what Israel does.
If there is a slight editorial shift in today’s print news, it seems to favor statements from the Palestinian authority in the West Bank rather than Hamas in Gaza.
Of course the Chinese state media is quick to put the olive branch of peace in its own hands, and the hands of its crony fellow authoritarians such as Russia, Columbia in their “deeply concerned” calls for “peace.” Furthermore, the article can’t resist mentioning that along with the US, China’s regional nemesis India and some unnamed European countries, (you know who you are) back Israel.
Today’s top domestic news stories were all about Xi of course, in all his glory, past and present, and his insights into not just China’s 5000 years of cultural splendor but all of humanity on the planet earth. There’s a new body of thought, known as “Xi Jinping Culture Thought” that gets some of the best minutes on today’s news.
Xi also found time to attend a trade union meeting. He got a long warm welcome to a meeting in the Great Hall full of ceremonial splendor and extended applause. Xi really cares about workers (which does not really constitute news at all, even if it was really true.) Rather it looks like just another brick in the wall of Xi’s already massive personality cult.
One newsy bit: there is a carefully edited report on the visit of US veteran politician Chuck Schumer to Beijing. CCTV catches him at a moment in which he appears to be bowing in gratitude to Xi.
But that’s only natural to CCTV viewers. Everyone goes to Beijing to pay respects to the emperor, it’s the natural order of things.
Lots of the usual banal bromides about China’s correct policies, the CCP’s correct path and the unerring wisdom of Xi himself. And by the way, in regards to educating the supplicants from that insolent upstart country from North America—let’s remember that China has 5,000 years of history.
This segment, in which not much of substance was said, is best summed up in Xi’s lofty declaration about the planet earth:
“Planet Earth is vast enough to accommodate the respective development and common prosperity of China and the US,” President Xi Jinping said when meeting with a US congressional delegation led by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer in Beijing on Monday.
CCTV’s “30-Minute news” at noon created a Gaza backdrop for its news report