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Complex perspectives

Australia maintains a keen interest in the conflict and provides its own unique perspective on the issue.

Press Roundup on Australian Media, October 29, 2023 By Adam Braverman

What’s being said

Australia has been a vocal supporter of Israel since the establishment of the state in 1948, stemming partially from similarities in shared democratic values and a robust Jewish diaspora within the Australian community. However, Australia also recognizes the rights and aspirations of the Palestinian people, advocating for a two-state solution as a pathway towards peace. Recent escalations of violence in the region between Israel and Palestine have drawn significant attention from Australian news outlets. In 2023, Australian news sources diligently reported on clashes, rocket attacks, and the humanitarian crisis affecting civilians in both Israel and Palestine. However, Australian news outlets, like many other global media organizations, have been criticized for bias, with some arguing that it leans towards the Israeli perspective due to historical ties.

Despite critiques of bias, Australian news media endeavors to present a range of perspectives and voices in its coverage. Australian journalists on the ground in Israel and Palestine provide firsthand accounts, offering direct insights into the challenges faced by both Israelis and Palestinians. These reports often highlight the human tragedy and promote awareness of the impact of the ongoing conflict on innocent civilian lives. Australian news often covers stories that highlight Israel's accomplishments in various fields, including technology, innovation, and culture.

In addition to on-the-ground reporting, Australian news outlets feature political analysis and commentary on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Australia's academic institutes and research organizations also engage in public discourse, fostering a deeper understanding of the dynamics at play.

Australian news outlets focus on the human impact of the Israeli population dislodgement, shedding light on the experiences and hardships faced by those affected. They share stories of families being uprooted from their homes, highlighting the emotional toll and displacement that such actions can cause. This human-centric approach fosters empathy and a deeper understanding of the consequences faced by individuals and communities.

What’s not being said

While Australian news outlets touch upon the historical context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, a deeper analysis of the root causes is often missing. A more comprehensive understanding requires delving into the complexities of historical injustices, competing national aspirations, and policies that have shaped the conflict over the years.

News coverage often focuses on political dynamics and high-level negotiations, leaving little space for grassroots peacebuilding initiatives. These initiatives, driven by ordinary individuals from both Israeli and Palestinian communities, aim to foster dialogue, understanding, and reconciliation. For example, Combatants for Peace is an organization composed of former Israeli soldiers and Palestinian militants who have chosen the path of nonviolence. They work together to educate their communities about the human cost of the conflict, engaging in joint activities such as educational programs, public events, and grassroots actions towards peace and coexistence. Highlighting the efforts of ordinary Israelis and Palestinians who work together for coexistence, reconciliation, and understanding can foster hope and inspire broader engagement with peacebuilding efforts.

What we think

Australian news outlets play a crucial role in shaping public opinion on international issues, including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The coverage prompts public awareness and sparks debates among Australians who hold a wide range of views on the issue. This robust public discourse gives voice to those advocating for peace, dialogue, and a fair resolution of the conflict.

The kind of public input generated by Australian news outlets on international issues such as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is invaluable and should be directed towards several important channels and initiatives such as government and diplomatic efforts, international organizations, civil society, non-governmental organizations, education and awareness campaigns.

Generally, Australian news perspectives on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in 2023 are complex and multifaceted. While strong historical ties and shared values have influenced Australia's support for Israel, Australian media strives to provide diverse coverage by capturing the experiences of both Israelis and Palestinians. By presenting a range of perspectives, facilitating public discourse, and analyzing the political dynamics, Australian news outlets are contributing to a broader understanding of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict within the Australian context.

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