By Stephen Pollard
July 24, 2009
My colleague Marcus Dysch has a fascinating post on the security wall.
No, not that one: the Indian wall.
Never heard of it? Nor me. And Marcus explains what's going on:
First let's try "Indian Security Barrier". What do we get? 383,000
results. Three of the first ten, mind you, are actually about the
Israeli barrier. Seriously. The only mainstream British media story I
could find solely about India's barrier is a 2005 article from The
Times. It's obviously been around for quite a while then.
Wikipedia (not exactly a reliable source, I know) has about three paragraphs on it.
Now let's try "Israeli Security Barrier". Slightly higher, 485,000
results. Most of the first dozen or so, if you go and read the pages
they link to, raise words such as "apartheid". Nice. The very first
result is a Wikipedia page which I estimated to carry about 3,000 words
and around a dozen maps, pictures and graphs.
I am not attempting to argue the rights and the wrongs of either barrier.
I am not pretending that the Israeli barrier is perfect or
faultless. Of course it is not. It has changed many innocent
Palestinian lives for the worse. But, at the same time, it has no doubt
saved many innocent Israeli lives altogether.
The coverage of the two barriers, seemingly so similar in intent and
style, does, however, say much about the challenges Israel faces
abroad. Again and again the Jewish state is made a special case. Its
defence often goes unheard. The attacks are unrelenting. The
construction of the West Bank security barrier has, for most of this
decade, been at the very top of the list of examples used to attack her.
The Indian barrier meanwhile seems to have barely warranted a mention in much of the quality British press or the BBC.