Guardian's Hariri Coverage Harsher on Israel Than al-Jazeera's

August 17th, 2006 1:02 PM
Covering a speech by Lebanese political leader Saad Hariri, son of Rafik Hariri, whose assassination launched the Cedar Revolution resulting in the withdrawal of Syria from Lebanon, the Guardian Unlimited goes so far as to list Israel first as a target of Hariri's condemnation. Their story highlights Hariri's words about Israel, placing them on a par with his attack on Syria:
Hariri's son condemns Israel and Syria The son of Lebanon's assassinated former prime minister and leader of the largest faction in the Lebanese parliament today condemned the involvement of both Israel and Syria in the country's month-long war.

The Guardian finally mentions, in the eleventh paragraph, that Hariri's criticism of Israel was in response to a speech by Syrian leader Bashar Assad, in which he accused anti-Syrian factions of aligning themselves with Israel.

In other words, in a speech excoriating Syria for their part in provoking the Israeli actions in south Lebanon, Hariri made a pro forma criticism of Israel to counter Assad's claim, and the Guardian played it up as a major part of the story.

Even al-Jazeera didn't take that route, reporting instead that Hariri placed the blame squarely Syria:

Al-Hariri: Syria worse than Israel The leader of Lebanon's largest parliamentary bloc has said the Syrian president's attack on Lebanese politicians is worse than the destruction wreaked by Israel.
Disclosure: I had my own strange encounter with the Guardian Unlimited last year, when they somehow managed to misinterpret a clearly labeled satiric post.