Monday, July 14, 2008

AFP Clear As Mud

AFP distributed this story and not only inappropriately injected opinion into what was purportedly a news story, but interjected an opinion about the content of the story that is clearly absurd.

Pope prays for Middle East peace

Jun 19, 2008

VATICAN CITY (AFP) — Pope Benedict XVI called Thursday on leaders across the Middle East to work for peace, saying that he is praying "ardently" for the ability to visit the Holy Land in person.

In a clear reference to the fragile truce in the Gaza Strip, which began at 0300 GMT, the pope was speaking after meeting with international Roman and Eastern Catholic leaders, including representatives from the region.

[There is no "clear reference" to the so-called truce in the Gaza Strip.

On the other hand there is an element in this story which is inadvertantly more accurate than others. It refers to a truce IN the Gaza Strip rather than a truce between the Gaza Strip and Israel. There really is no truce between the Gaza Strip and Israel, since Arab terrorists continue to launch Kassams and mortars from Gaza at towns in Israel. Whatever truce exists is really just a cessation of hostilities within Gaza as Israel has ceased defending itself from the attacks from Gaza.]

"I am launching an appeal to national leaders so that the Middle East, and in particular the Land of Jesus, Lebanon and Iraq, can offer themselves peace and social stability, respecting fundamental human rights, including that of a genuine religious freedom," he said.

"I am praying ardently that I will be able to visit them in person, just as I am praying that certain signs of peace, which I welcome with great confidence, will come to full fruition," he added.

"Peace is the only way to tackle the serious problem of displaced persons and refugees, to put an end to the flight in particular of Christians, which so wounds the Eastern churches."

The pontiff said he had followed "with gratitude and relief" recent developments in Lebanon.

[The recent developments gave the terror group Hezbollah a veto over government actions. That is not something anyone should view with either gratitude or relief.]

The country finally elected a president and a prime minister last month government after a long stand-off and clashes between rival factions threatened to drag the country into civil war, but remains without a government.

"Once again, I express the wish that Lebanon will find the courage to fulfil its vocation as an example to the Middle East and the world at large of peaceful and constructive co-existence between men," he added.

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