Trying Too Hard for Balance, FNC Equates Israeli Security Measures With Fauxtography

Last week, I documented here the way CNN leaned over backwards for balance in a story. In the wake of the Seattle Jewish Center shooting, it equated the fear of Jewish-Americans of similar incidents . . . with the fear of Hezbollah supporters of being unfairly accused.

Although it wasn't nearly so egregious, Fox News Channel's Anita Vogel [seen here in a file photo] just engaged in some over-reaching herself in the name of balance. She narrated an otherwise solid segment on 'fauxtography' and other ways in which the media and Hezbollah supporters manipulate the news. The segment included an interview with star blogger Charles Johnson, founder of Little Green Footballs, who played a key role in outing the smoky Beirut-skyline bit of fauxtography.

But then, searching for balance where there really is little or none to be had, Vogel claimed that the Israeli government also manipulates the news:

"But we need to keep in mind, there are other ways foreign governments control the media. The Israeli government exercises control over the media during wartime, like prohibiting them from reporting on real-time rocket strikes and places in northern Israel where officials are visiting due to safety concerns."

It doesn't take a journalism degree to see that there is a world of difference between the intentional misrepresentation of events, and the adoption of prudent security measures. But news outlets, apparently even FNC, feel pressure not to appear one-sided, even when that means comparing apples to oranges.

Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.