New York Times attacks Israel's new coalition government

Jodi Rudoren, the Jerusalem bureau chief of the New York Times, doesn't disappoint.

Writing for an anti-Zionist, anti-Netanyahu newspaper, she describes in funereal tones Israel's new coalition government as hostile to the peace process and unlikely to overcome internal divisions.  All this, mind you, before Bibi's new cabinet has even been installed.   Rudoren and the Times already give it a thumbs down.  ("Netanayhu Near Accepting New Coalition" March 15, page A4).

It's one thing for the editorial page of the Times to carry out a lengthy vendetta against Netanyahu.  That's the paper's opinion and it's entitled to it.  But it's quite another thing for the Times to pollute its news section with its anti-Israel venom.  Journalistic ethics, if there still are any, prescribe fair, balanced, even-handed treatment in news reports.  Instead, Rudoren infuses her "news" dispatches with the Times' editorial agenda. 

Here's how she does it:  Starting with the lead paragraph, she imperiously decrees that the new government is "likely to be paralyzed on the Middle East peace process."  It would never enter the mindset of Rudoren and the Times that perhaps Mahmoud Abbas has done far more to paralyze the peace process in the last several years by running away from serious negotiations.  With the Times, it's always Israel that is at fault; it's only Israel that must offer compromises and concessions.

Moving on further into Rudoren's piece, readers are told that Netanyahu's selection of a new housing minister, who's a former chief of the settlers' council,  is apt to "complicate prospects for progress."   Ah, the only barrier to peace, according to Rudoren and the Times, are those darn Jewish settlements in the West Bank.  Never mind that former Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Ehud Olmert offered peace deals that would have ceded 95 percent of the West Bank to the Palestinians, plus Arab neighborhoods in East Jerusalem, only to see them peremptorily dismissed, respectively, first by Yasser Arafat and then by Mahmoud Abbas.

Again, it doesn't enter the mindset of the Times and Rudoren that the real obstacle to peace is Palestinian/Arab refusal to countenance Jewish sovereignty in a Jewish state.  Nor are they prepared to take a real look at the real Abbas who glorifies terrorist killers and teaches Palestinian children that "Palestine" must include everything from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea - with no room whatever for Israel.

Still moving further into Rudoren's gloom-and-doom dispatch, she picks a maven to her liking, Yedidia Stern of the Israel Democracy Institute, who sketches a calamitous future for Israel under the new government - "the schism between the ultra-Orthodox and Israeli society might become more severe, the schism between those who have and those who have not might become more severe; and the schism between the Palestinians and Israelis will become more severe."

Might.  Might. Might.  Speculation run wild in Rudoren's feverish anti-Bibi imagination.

Still piling on, for good measure, Rudoren then plumbs the wisdom of Hanan Ashrawi, the veteran Palestinian propagandist, who predictably assures Times readers that the new coalition is at heart "a right-wing, hard-line government that does not bode well for the chances of peace."

No big secret that the Palestinians are not enthused about Israel's new government.  Or that  Rudoren and the Times would prefer a left-wing, soft-line government.  Just one problem, however:  Israeli voters, in their democratic wisdom, thought otherwise when they cast their ballots in January.  Palestinians should be so lucky:  They're still waiting for elections that are years behind schedule and show no sign of materializing.  Something that Rudoren and the Times also fail to tell their readers.


LEO RENNERT

Leo Rennert is a former White House correspondent and Washington bureau chief of McClatchy Newspapers

 

 

 

 

Jodi Rudoren, the Jerusalem bureau chief of the New York Times, doesn't disappoint.

Writing for an anti-Zionist, anti-Netanyahu newspaper, she describes in funereal tones Israel's new coalition government as hostile to the peace process and unlikely to overcome internal divisions.  All this, mind you, before Bibi's new cabinet has even been installed.   Rudoren and the Times already give it a thumbs down.  ("Netanayhu Near Accepting New Coalition" March 15, page A4).

It's one thing for the editorial page of the Times to carry out a lengthy vendetta against Netanyahu.  That's the paper's opinion and it's entitled to it.  But it's quite another thing for the Times to pollute its news section with its anti-Israel venom.  Journalistic ethics, if there still are any, prescribe fair, balanced, even-handed treatment in news reports.  Instead, Rudoren infuses her "news" dispatches with the Times' editorial agenda. 

Here's how she does it:  Starting with the lead paragraph, she imperiously decrees that the new government is "likely to be paralyzed on the Middle East peace process."  It would never enter the mindset of Rudoren and the Times that perhaps Mahmoud Abbas has done far more to paralyze the peace process in the last several years by running away from serious negotiations.  With the Times, it's always Israel that is at fault; it's only Israel that must offer compromises and concessions.

Moving on further into Rudoren's piece, readers are told that Netanyahu's selection of a new housing minister, who's a former chief of the settlers' council,  is apt to "complicate prospects for progress."   Ah, the only barrier to peace, according to Rudoren and the Times, are those darn Jewish settlements in the West Bank.  Never mind that former Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Ehud Olmert offered peace deals that would have ceded 95 percent of the West Bank to the Palestinians, plus Arab neighborhoods in East Jerusalem, only to see them peremptorily dismissed, respectively, first by Yasser Arafat and then by Mahmoud Abbas.

Again, it doesn't enter the mindset of the Times and Rudoren that the real obstacle to peace is Palestinian/Arab refusal to countenance Jewish sovereignty in a Jewish state.  Nor are they prepared to take a real look at the real Abbas who glorifies terrorist killers and teaches Palestinian children that "Palestine" must include everything from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea - with no room whatever for Israel.

Still moving further into Rudoren's gloom-and-doom dispatch, she picks a maven to her liking, Yedidia Stern of the Israel Democracy Institute, who sketches a calamitous future for Israel under the new government - "the schism between the ultra-Orthodox and Israeli society might become more severe, the schism between those who have and those who have not might become more severe; and the schism between the Palestinians and Israelis will become more severe."

Might.  Might. Might.  Speculation run wild in Rudoren's feverish anti-Bibi imagination.

Still piling on, for good measure, Rudoren then plumbs the wisdom of Hanan Ashrawi, the veteran Palestinian propagandist, who predictably assures Times readers that the new coalition is at heart "a right-wing, hard-line government that does not bode well for the chances of peace."

No big secret that the Palestinians are not enthused about Israel's new government.  Or that  Rudoren and the Times would prefer a left-wing, soft-line government.  Just one problem, however:  Israeli voters, in their democratic wisdom, thought otherwise when they cast their ballots in January.  Palestinians should be so lucky:  They're still waiting for elections that are years behind schedule and show no sign of materializing.  Something that Rudoren and the Times also fail to tell their readers.


LEO RENNERT

Leo Rennert is a former White House correspondent and Washington bureau chief of McClatchy Newspapers

 

 

 

 

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