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Media / Media Bias

The truth about the Christian Peacemakers Teams

by Arthur Weinreb, Associate Editor,
Thursday, December 15, 2005

On November 26, an Iraqi group calling itself the Swords of the Righteous Brigade kidnapped four Westerners and threatened to kill them unless the United States and its allies released all Iraqi prisoners. Three days later, the Christian Peacemakers Teams (CPT) acknowledged that the four men who were kidnapped were members of their organization.

Since CPT vaulted into the headlines of the major media throughout the world, very little has been written or portrayed about the group in the mainstream media. The media seems to be content just to mention the group’s name and refer to those that were kidnapped as "peace activists". From exposure to the mainstream media alone, people are not likely to know any more about CPT than they do about the Swords of Righteous Brigade, a group than no one knew existed until the late November kidnappings.

Even when it seemed that every major terrorist group in the world, from Hamas to al Qaeda, appealed for the hostages’ release, the media did not think it important to look into the group that was garnering so much sympathy from organizations that take so much delight in blowing up civilians.

There were exceptions to this non-reporting, one of them being columnist Peter Worthington. Writing in the Toronto Sun on December 9, Worthington wrote that the group "has a record of dabbling in politics under the guise of religious motivation". He goes on to note that the group’s intent seems to be not helping the Iraqis but interfering with American efforts to bring security and stability to the Middle Eastern country. Worthington further wrote that if he were a betting man, he would bet that the hostages would be released because "they are clearly on the side of the ‘enemy’ and not on the side of America and its allies".

It’s not necessary that the media agree with Worthington’s conclusions about the group, but they at least should be reporting on exactly who these Christian Peacemakers Teams are rather than simply use the generic term "peace activists".

Statements on the group’s website (www.cpt.org) clearly back some of Worthington’s conclusions. The CPT is naturally upset about the fact that four of their members were kidnapped and threatened with death. And they don’t hesitate to say who’s at fault. They note on their website, "We are angry because what has happened to our teammates is the result of the actions of the U.S. and U.K. governments due to the illegal attack on Iraq and the continuing occupation and oppression of its people."

And what do they think of the actual kidnappers? "While we believe the action of kidnapping is wrong we do not condemn you as people."

You won’t see much in the mainstream media about the group being anti-American and anti-Israel while remaining silent on suicide bombings and the killings of innocent civilians, including babies and children, by those terrorist groups who lobbied for the release of the CPT members. The group will forever remain "peace activists".

And . . .

As reported on World Net Daily, the New York Times Sunday magazine featured an article stating that conservative blogs are much more effective than their liberal counterparts. The writer, Michael Crowley, concludes that conservative blogs are more effective because of the "infrastructure" that is provided for them by Fox News and conservative talk show hosts such as Rush Limbaugh.

Nice try. The real reason that conservative blogs are doing better than liberal ones is for the same reason that Fox News and conservative talk radio are doing so well. The liberals don’t need blogs any more than they need talk radio. Those media provide no useful function to them. They already control the mainstream media including the major television networks, cable networks (excluding Fox), the New York Times, the Washington Post and pretty much all of the mainstream American media. Liberal blogs don’t perform the same function that conservative blogs do.


Arthur Weinreb is an author, columnist and Associate Editor of Canada Free Press. His work has appeared on Newsmax.com, Men's News Daily, Drudge Report, Foxnews.com, Glenn Beck and The Rant. Arthur can be reached at: letters@canadafreepress.com











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