On the June 11 web portion of HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher" called "Overtime", there was a lively discussion between guests - Queen Noor of Jordan, Rachel Maddow, Jon Meacham, Oliver Stone and Bill Frist. A discussion of Israel and Palestine and the definition of "occupied" quickly turned towards a debate of whether there is a pro-Israel bias in the media. The following is a portion of that debate:
Jon Meacham: "The idea that there is a pro-Israeli bias in the broad media - whatever 'the media' means at this point, I strongly disagree with. I think if anything, you run into a very strong feeling on the Palestinian side."
Bill Maher: "I agree."
Rachel Maddow: "Who speaks out publicly in a pro-Palestinian, anti-Israeli way in mainstream American politics, or media?"
Bill Maher: "I think everybody. I think most of them do because I think the media, to take up your point, mostly, is way too stupid to understand the issues. So what they do is they go toward, oh, who's a victim. And yes, their situation in Gaza is tragic, but partly it's tragic of their own making."
It's comes as no surprise that Jon Meacham would make the assertion that there's a pro-Palestinian slant in the media. But it knocked me out of my chair to hear such a claim coming from Bill Maher. Apparently, I wasn't the only one stunned by this revelation. Maher's studio audience, who is generally sitting on the edge of their seats waiting to cheer and applaud whatever he says, sat in a stunned silence.
Watch the clip here:
i know it's two days old, but i don't remember seeing it posted