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Praise for the New York Times:

Over my years of blogging, I've been highly critical of the N.Y. Times's coverage of a variety matters, not least its coverage of the 2006 Lebanon War (e.g.). I think it's therefore only sporting to acknowledge that I think the Times has been much better this time, and by better, I don't mean "overtly pro-Israel," but engaging in some real journalism that goes well beyond the position implicitly taken in '06 (see link above) that the essence of any war is the suffering it creates on each side while the war is going on. Here, for example, is a new story on Israelis' perspective on the war in Gaza. Unlike many such stories, it doesn't go out of its way to quote outliers. And here's a scene from a Gaza hospital from Friday's paper:

A car arrived with more patients. One was a 21-year-old man with shrapnel in his left leg who demanded quick treatment. He turned out to be a militant with Islamic Jihad. He was smiling a big smile.

Hurry, I must get back so I can keep fighting," he told the doctors.

He was told that there were more serious cases than his, that he needed to wait. But he insisted. "We are fighting the Israelis," he said. "When we fire we run, but they hit back so fast. We run into the houses to get away." He continued smiling.

"Why are you so happy?" this reporter asked. "Look around you."

A girl who looked about 18 screamed as a surgeon removed shrapnel from her leg. An elderly man was soaked in blood. A baby a few weeks old and slightly wounded looked around helplessly. A man lay with parts of his brain coming out. His family wailed at his side.

"Don't you see that these people are hurting?" the militant was asked.

"But I am from the people, too," he said, his smile incandescent. "They lost their loved ones as martyrs. They should be happy. I want to be a martyr, too."

What explains the Times's turnaround? I don't know, but perhaps criticism from bloggers and others played a role. Maybe the restrictions Israel has put on journalists going to Gaza has made it more difficult to serve as propaganda agensts for the other side (but then why has the Washington Post been so bad?). Or maybe it's just a reflection of my pet theory about the Times's Israel coverage: Anti-Israel activists tend to think the Times is pro-Israel, and pro-Israel activists tend to think the Times is hostile to Israel, for the same reason. The ideological tenor of the Times's Israel coverage is "Meretznik"--like the Israeli Meretz Party, the Times is Zionist (pro-Israel), but on the left-wing, extreme peacenik fringe of Zionism. Given that even most Meretzniks in Israel, like my own father-in-law, are strongly supportive of the Gaza war, it's perhaps not surprising that the Times is showing some sympathy.

DangerMouse:
What explains the Times's turnaround?

Probably that they're going to go bankrupt sometime later this year and hoped that throwing Israel a bone or two would maybe induce some favorable advertising dollars. It won't.

I hope they go bankrupt very soon.
1.12.2009 11:01pm
Warrenm (mail):
No, The N.Y. Times has not really changed its stripes. Look at this letter they will not publish.

Letters to the Editor
The New York Times
New York, N.Y.
Ethan Bronner's Jan. 8 column is an outstanding example of the depths to
which the N.Y. Times has sunk in allowing unbalanced biased columns to be
printed. Bronner violated every tenet of responsible and honest
journalism in his column - "U.N. and Red Cross Add to Outcry on Gaza War"
when he ignored the fundamental cause of the conflict in Gaza and ignored
barbaric tactics used by HAMAS purely for propaganda value. By portraying
Gazans as the victims of the conflict, Bronner is aiding and abetting
terrorism on a scale not ever considered possible. He is making it
profitable for terrorists to benefit from hiding behind Human Shields,
the most despicable tactic ever used by a combatant in the history of
warfare..
Bronner has to know that HAMAS fired more than 6,000 rockets into Israel
in the past two years forcing Israel to take action to stop the
rocketing. He seems to have trouble reporting the extensive human and
property damage from this incessant rocketing. He has to know that HAMAS
uses mosques, schools, hospitals and private homes as bases of
operations, for storing munitions and for firing rockets. Ambulances are
used to ferry terrorists and rockets from one area to another. HAMAS
knows the reluctance of Israel to fire upon these targets and has no
compunction in seeing innocent Palestinian citizens killed or maimed when
Israel does. They understand the propaganda value when journalists like
Bronner dismally and dutifully report should Israel harm innocent
civilians.
Bronner forgets Jenin in 2002 when the media wrongly echoed Palestinians
in declaring that Israel had committed a "massacre; or the Qana, Lebanon
fiasco when dead babies were help up for the press, only they were not
dead babies? Is he not yet wise to the tactic of having live "corpses"
displayed in Gaza for a gullible media willing to accept falsehoods?
The willingness of Bronner to accept the word of so-called U.N. officials
adds to the level of hypocrisy. The U.N. officials in Gaza are components
of UNRWA, set up in 1948 to help Arab refugees fleeing from the fighting
in Israel. More than 90% of these "officials" are Palestinians on the
U.N. payroll. He perpetuates absurd claims that Israel denies
Palestinians the basic necessities of life. Interestingly, the photo
accompanying the Bronner article, shows Palestinians gathering to receive
flour from a huge truck at a U.N. food distribution center in Gaza City.
None of the Palestinians look emaciated and the truck is loaded with bags
of food. Was this photo a mistake?
The N.Y. Times must examine its apparent policy as a conduit for
Palestinian propaganda. It is unbecoming for a major American newspaper
to take sides, for this appears to be the case.
1.13.2009 12:08am
Paul Allen:
If you want some examples of mainstream-media bias against Israel, I recommend the Financial Times... please compare to their coverage of the Georgian Conflict. Sad to see in an otherwise excellent publication.
1.13.2009 12:17am
Shelby (mail):
What explains the Times's turnaround?

Maybe you're just over-thinking this, and sometimes the Times appears to skew one way, sometimes another. The average may not lie in the middle of the spectrum, but most points along it get represented at least occasionally.
1.13.2009 12:31am
SecurityGeek:
Maybe when their reporters witness a scene so indelible (such as Mr. Self-Centered-Terrorist surrounded by wailing civilians) they have to relay it for interpretation by their readers?

It's definitely a difficult balance, but I wouldn't read the scene as definitely pro-Israel either. I think we forget that it's easy to sit back and interpret an entire article as leaning one way or another, but the journalists writing it base their work upon the actions they witness and quotes they get. Maybe reporters (who don't invent things) are much more constrained by the realities of what they can reasonably witness than the rest of us take into account.
1.13.2009 12:32am
TokyoTom (mail):
Maybe the restrictions Israel has put on journalists going to Gaza has made it more difficult to serve as propaganda agensts for the other side (but then why has the Washington Post been so bad?).


Do libertarians favor illegal press censorship, David, or only in the case of Israel?

Speaking of propaganda agents, do you plan to criticize Olmert for throwing his weight in on the side of those Jew-haters, Walt and Mearsheimer, by bragging how he's more influential with Bush than Condi Rice?

Legal and namby-pamby libertarian points aside, have you see this piece in Haaretz by an Italian journalist arguing why Israel should let foreign journalists into Gaza? Something about checking "truthy" news. I know; LGF and others can do that just as well - so who needs reporters, anyway?
1.13.2009 12:37am
TruePath (mail) (www):
There is no reason to go looking for conspiracy stories or overarching explanations. The NYT is not some monolithic organization pursuing particular agendas. It is a collection of people each trying to do their jobs well. We don't need to postulate any deep anti-israel bias to explain the news stories but merely look at the incentives and psychological pressures on the reporters. I'd argue that most of the reason that news stories about the conflict often seem to focus on alleged (and often false) Israeli atrocities but not bad behavior by Hamas can be explained by looking at the incentives of the reporters and without postulating any overarching bias in the newspaper.

1) Journalists/photographers are ambitious and want to write the pieces. In a 24 hour news cycle the rocket attacks that started this are old news and most Israelis who are dying are soldiers. Pictures of Israeli forces pushing into Gaza, descriptions of frightened Palestinians and mothers grieving over their dead simply pack more of an emotional punch than abstract arguments about the Israelis who would have been killed if they did not deter the rocket attacks.

2) Journalists are under time pressure and need to get punchy stories quickly. Israel is an open democratic society that releases accurate information while Hamas and other Palestinians concoct descriptions of outrageous conduct or delibrately force the Israelis into restricting humanitarian aid or bombing schools by using these for military purposes. It's quick and easy to write the story about the school being bombed and it will grab viewer eyeballs.

In contrast writing a story showing how Hamas's duplicitous behavior forces Israel to take these actions is not only time consuming to write but, is fundamentally an analytic and less shocking allegation so it doesn't have the same impact. I mean we all know that Hamas is a terrorist group so finding out they use schools or red crescent vehicles just doesn't strike people as emotionally shocking (even though rationally it should).

3) People are simply more interested and more shocked by 'bad' behavior by others they see as part of their community/social group. This blog writes posts criticizing Canada and Europe for infringements on free speech but not articles criticizing Indonesian tribes for revenge killings and worse atrocities. That is because we view other western powers as being part of the same society and thus treat them as peers to be criticized and reasoned where primitive tribes or third world countries are treated more as situations to be affected. A major reason that more print is spent criticizing Israel than Hamas is that we see Israel as being a part of western civilization and thus worthy of criticizing while Hamas is beyond the pale and not even worthy of this kind of rational engagement. It's the same reason this very blog has spent more time criticizing ways the Iraq war has gone than in critisizing the Iraqi insurgents.

-------

Seems to me is that all that happened in this case is that both the emotional impact and ease of story happened to line up in Israel's favor this time.
1.13.2009 2:43am
eyesay:
Warrenm: Your letter is 451 words. The New York Times has a 150 word limit for letters to the editor, and most of those printed are shorter even that that.

But even if your letter were within the word limit, you still would not a "right" to have your letter published. The New York Times receives thousands of letters every day and publishes about 15. The odds are very difficult.
1.13.2009 3:24am
Brian G (mail) (www):
I wish Israel would do what needs to be done and demolish Hamas to such a level that there is no one left to whine about Israel to the NY Timea and their ilk.
1.13.2009 4:31am
David Yashar (mail):
Your Iraqi father-in-law is a Meretznik! I'm shocked, shocked. Though I imagine you must have interesting dinner discussions when you're in town.
1.13.2009 4:42am
Brett A. (mail):
You actually cited Eyeonthepost.com? They're a joke - in spite of all evidence to the contrary, they claim that the Settlements in the West Bank aren't bad, because they are only built on empty land.
1.13.2009 4:44am
BGates:
People are simply more interested and more shocked by 'bad' behavior by others they see as part of their community/social group.

Which is why the Times criticizes their fellow Republicans so much.

we all know that Hamas is a terrorist group
How do people who depend on the Times for information know that?
1.13.2009 4:56am
Stevie Williams (mail):
Cheer all you like, Mr. Bernstein, but Israel clearly is afraid to let journalists in to let the truth of their actions be shown.

900 dead now, 1/3 of them children. Do those poor soldjah boys even know what they are shooting at? How come America continues to finance this nonsense?

Signed,
US Citizen (sole) and taxpayer who sees that Israel, once again, is absent a strategy and just wants to "act tough". They'll succeed in this one, just as much as they did in Lebanon. And until the US cuts off funding, there will be another.
So much for "independence" all this posturing before the Feb. elections. Dead blood of children always seems to come back to life, if you know what I mean.
1.13.2009 5:21am
FedkatheConvict:
Perhaps the NYTimes isn't using much of Taghreed El-Khodary's reports.

I had the distinct displeasure of viewing an interview with her on CNN International last week and although they identified her as a the NY Times Gaza correspondent, I could have sworn I was listening to a Hamas propaganda broadcaster.
1.13.2009 6:22am
Azores:
Perhaps this time Israel is not afraid of these paper tigers and is pursuing the war. So, what the point of abusing someone that is not afraid of words or demonstration? T
1.13.2009 6:31am
Pragmaticist:
When a terrorist has babies strapped all over his body as human shields, and the terrorist is shooting missiles at his victims, the extreme left-winger brands the victim a murderer when the victim shoots back at the terrorist and accidentally and unintentionally kills a baby.

How do we teach leftists that the guilty party is the terrorist and not the victim who tried to protect his own life? Shoot missiles at extreme leftists!
1.13.2009 6:40am
bobby b (mail):
"A major reason that more print is spent criticizing Israel than Hamas is that we see Israel as being a part of western civilization and thus worthy of criticizing while Hamas is beyond the pale and not even worthy of this kind of rational engagement."

Uh, dissent. The tone of the media towards Israel is certainly not the disappointed dad expecting better from his kid while his nogoodnik black sheep friend who led him into wayward ways is scummy enough so that no one was surprised.

No, the tone is much more akin to "will somebody just nuke the damn jews so we can all Move On?" If Hamas is beyond the Pale, wouldn't they be better off nuking them?

"Dead blood of children always seems to come back to life, if you know what I mean."

Well, sure, but only right after the Palestinian camera crews have turned off their equipment. Miraculous recoveries, aren't they?
1.13.2009 6:46am
Clay Waters (www):
I also think the Times' coverage has been more balanced this time around. But it's still issuing knee-jerk moral equivalency headlines like this (the jump headline to Monday's front-page story):

"Gaza War Is Full of Traps and Trickery By Both Hamas and Israel."

The story itself lumped in Hamas tactics (deadly booby traps and Hamas fighters posing as citizens with the Israeli tactic of prying information from ordinary Gaza citizens via fake sympathy phone calls. Not exactly tit-for-tat.
1.13.2009 7:45am
Steevo (mail):
I didn't read it as anything to favor Israel. Typical reporting on the innocents: girl, elderly man, baby but, willing to be 'objective' describing a demented Hamas guy.

Come on without him it would be the same ole'. They can't be 100% biased (one-sided) 100% of the time. They need to do what's necessary for some people, to give them credit.
1.13.2009 8:01am
Bruce_M (mail):
Religion. Only religion can cause such inhuman insanity.

I'd sure feel warm and fluffy to "Know" with a capital K that every single religious person on this planet will burn and rot in hell for all eternity after they die. But even my deepest desire to feel good doesn't make it true.

The middle east, and all the god-fearing people in it, should be nuked, and their holy rocks should be melted to glass.
1.13.2009 8:15am
Hauk (mail):
The tone of the media towards Israel is certainly not the disappointed dad expecting better from his kid while his nogoodnik black sheep friend who led him into wayward ways is scummy enough so that no one was surprised.

No, the tone is much more akin to "will somebody just nuke the damn jews so we can all Move On?"


Yep, that's definitely it. What media are you reading? Stormfront?
1.13.2009 9:16am
Jay Manifold (mail) (www):
Bruce_M: Finally, an explanation for all the internecine violence between religious communities in the American Midwest, where Baptists and Pentecostalists blow up each other's churches and shoot rockets into neighborhoods at random.
1.13.2009 9:21am
PLR:
Legal and namby-pamby libertarian points aside, have you see this piece in Haaretz by an Italian journalist arguing why Israel should let foreign journalists into Gaza? Something about checking "truthy" news. I know; LGF and others can do that just as well - so who needs reporters, anyway?

Michael Ledeen (still not in jail) can explain it all for you in the upcoming panel discussion at GMU. It's bound to be revealing, if not actually informative.
1.13.2009 9:25am
devorah:
Mr Bernstein, You mentioned (why has the Washington Post been so bad) with a link to the eyeonthepost website. The eyeonthepost has a petition protesting the unfair coverage of Israel in the Wash. Post. The petiton already has almost 2000 signatures at http://eyeonthepost.org
1.13.2009 9:55am
Robert Samet (mail) (www):
Brett A stated: "You actually cited Eyeonthepost.com? They're a joke - in spite of all evidence to the contrary, they claim that the Settlements in the West Bank aren't bad, because they are only built on empty land."

Brett, I don't believe we've ever said that or anything close to that. We try to avoid taking political positions such as that which you attribute to us. Our primary mission is simply to do whatever we can to reduce or eliminate the inaccurate, opinionated and agenda drive reporting of the Washington Post on issues relating to Israel and the disputed territories. Perhaps you're mixing us up with some other group. Take a look at our web site, and I think you'll agree. While you're there, you or any other visitors are requested to sign our petition to the Washington Post echoing our criticism and goals located at http://eyeonthepost.wsone.com/bin/display_petitions.cgi?ID=1

Robert G. Samet
Chairman
EyeOnThePost, Inc.
http://www.eyeonthepost.org
1.13.2009 10:01am
Dr medhat bassim (mail):
Some of U S media had awakened concionce like C N N and can see ISRAEL crimes againest humanity and report the HUMAN RIGHTS demands to stop the killings.The blind pro ISRAEL folks IGNORE the facts that the peaple of GAZA was made refugees by the israel concors on 1948 and the atrosity they mad like DEAR YASIN killing of all the villagers and throwing corpuses in wells.{documented by united nation}the same GAZA peaple were under targeted assasinations and siege with no food or fuel and are asked not to grumble by some non destructive rockets.its like blaming a victim for scratching the thief who stole evry thing and strangling him! I am sure in the long run all this spilled blood will haunt israel for its HOLOCOST.Its a cycle; I and milions is radicalised and i m not palestinian; may HAMAS hold againest the criminals.
1.13.2009 10:02am
Dave N (mail):
Bruce M,

Not had your morning coffee? Oh, and in your contempt for the religious, you fail to mention the atheists (think Uncle Joe Stalin and Chairman Mao) have been oh so enlightened in their treatment of their fellow human beings.

And which religion was Pol Pot? I am forgetting.
1.13.2009 10:31am
Sarcastro (www):
Pol Pot was a well known Muslim Atheist.
1.13.2009 10:34am
Dave N (mail):
Sacastro,

Half right.
1.13.2009 10:39am
Sarcastro (www):
Dave N well, I guess he wasn't that well known.
1.13.2009 10:49am
mischief (mail):

Religion. Only religion can cause such inhuman insanity.


That sentiment was a contributing factor to the inhuman insanity we call the Gulags.
1.13.2009 11:13am
PlugInMonster:
DB - kudos for the pro-Israel GMU event. No need to give "equal time" to Israel's enemies.
1.13.2009 11:16am
LN (mail):
So 510 out of 535 Congressmen voted in support of a pro-Israel resolution last week. In other words, nearly 5% of Congress did NOT vote for this resolution. Can someone explain to me the deep rot and bias in American politics that caused this? It's not like the conflict in Gaza is a contentious issue where multiple points of view are possible. I just don't get it. Is it the New York Times' fault?
1.13.2009 11:18am
PlugInMonster:
mischief - anti religious sentiment had nothing to do with the gulags. If you knew anything about Russian history you would know the gulag predates the Soviet regime. Stalin simply scaled it out to house all "enemies of the state"...
1.13.2009 11:20am
PlugInMonster:
LN - too bad for you Americans are decent folk.
1.13.2009 11:21am
Nekulturny (mail):
"Dr" medhat bassim, how can you possibly be a doctor of anything? You write like a teenage crack baby. This low standard among whatever people you come from helps to explain your people's failures. You should be ashamed to participate in a public forum or to use your real name (if you are). No wonder Yassir Arafat went to Western doctors.

I have an idea - are you that fat slob of a "doctor" who pretended to do CPR on that "dead" kid, alongside of the renegade Norwegian? If not, you and he probably went to the same "medical" "school." Boy, are you some advertisement for Arab brains.

This is entirely aside from your scummy political views, as much as they can be understood from your lousy English. If you agreed with me, I would be ashamed to have someone like you on my side, so I'm very glad that you believe what you believe. Oh and since you say you're not a Pal, that probably means you are.
1.13.2009 11:27am
LN (mail):

LN - too bad for you Americans are decent folk.


Interestingly, what seems to be the case is that nearly all American politicians are decent folk, while among the general populace there are tens of millions of little Eichmanns running around.
1.13.2009 11:54am
Daniel Chapman (mail):
Did anyone else read the post by "Dr medhat bassim" and expect him to eventually say he's a deposed nigerian prince who can send us untold millions if only we will provide account and routing number for him to divert his fortune to the United States?
1.13.2009 12:01pm
AN Khan:
I'm afraid that I cannot support this praise for the times, lukewarm though it may be. It is far, far from objective reportage, and definitly not "overtly pro-Israel", of that we may be certain. See, for example, this story from yesterday's edition, "Israelis United on Gaza War as Censure Rises Abroad". Explicitly speaking in the voice of Israel's detractors, it lays out the worst of the case against them for 6 paraghraphs. Perhaps the best encapsulation is the following;


Israelis deeply believe, rightly or wrongly, that their military works harder than most to spare civilians, holding their fire in many more cases than using it.


"[R]ightly or wrongly"? Israel has made efforts to spare the lives of civilians unprecedented in any modern armed conflict: this is not simple opinion, but objective, opbserved and reported fact. To suggest that it is merely a self-serving justification entertained by Israel's populace is staggering.

As an aside, I find the notion that which you seem to advocate, that we do not desire our news to be "overtly pro-Israel" a strange one. A democratic, modern state, an ally at that, is engaged in a war on the ground with an opponent whose own elected government is, by it's own admission, a medevilist, genocidal death cult.
1.13.2009 12:01pm
whit:

Religion. Only religion can cause such inhuman insanity.


rubbish. tell that to stalin. pol pot, etc.

it's the usual song from you - blame religion.

man doesn't need religion to be evil. it's neither sufficient nor necessary. and the 20th century offered ample proof that atheist people (and regimes) can be easily as murderous and rapacious as any religiously motivated one.
1.13.2009 1:00pm
Sarcastro (www):
But if you make Atheism a religeon, then Bruce totally wins!
1.13.2009 1:03pm
Billbo:
Somebody's already tackled this upthread when you wrote:

Maybe the restrictions Israel has put on journalists going to Gaza has made it more difficult to serve as propaganda agensts for the other side

This, of course, is nonsense. Clearly, this is a report filed by a correspondent based in Gaza, who has been able to report from inside the war zone, see things most others have not and come back with exclusive information, including — gasp! — news that reflects poorly on Hamas! Restricting this reporter's access to Gaza (or kicking her out) would have made the article you linked to non-existent.
1.13.2009 1:05pm
PLR:
This, of course, is nonsense. Clearly, this is a report filed by a correspondent based in Gaza, who has been able to report from inside the war zone, see things most others have not and come back with exclusive information, including — gasp! — news that reflects poorly on Hamas! Restricting this reporter's access to Gaza (or kicking her out) would have made the article you linked to non-existent.

I can only speculate that the reporter has been in Gaza since before the offensive, but regardless, it is no secret that the IDF reviews and censors ALL news reports coming out of Israel and Gaza, n'est-ce pas? Or is this news to people?
1.13.2009 1:29pm
theophilus (mail) (www):

DB - kudos for the pro-Israel GMU event. No need to give "equal time" to Israel's enemies.


I don't know if this was sarcastic or not. However, the GMU Arab Law Students Association had an "emergency fundraiser" for Gaza, fully presenting the Palestinian point of view, this past Saturday.

Both views are being presented on campus.
1.13.2009 1:32pm
PlugInMonster:
theophilus - no I wasn't being sarcastic. Israel needs all the help it can get. Now is not the time for playing moral equivalence games.
1.13.2009 2:02pm
davidbernstein (mail):
Thanks for the kudos, but the event isn't my initiative, it's a student initiative, I'm just passing along word for those interested.
1.13.2009 2:34pm
einhverfr (mail) (www):
I am not sure it is a full turnaround. More likely the NYT like many of the better papers, prints some variety of points of view. Whether or not it is balanced is an open question. However, I will take Haaretz and the NYT over Fox News and Jerusalem Post, all things being equal.

However, I wonder if the bigger story is the back-and-forth about the IDF shell hitting the UNRWA school. The AP has now reported that IDF officials speaking on condition of anonymity have said the shell was aimed a short distance away and missed its target. Now the IDF is sticking to its original story, kinda like CNN.....

All in all, I am willing to believe the AP in this manner over the IDF's PR department, at least as far as whether or not the conversations took place and what they said. This then suggests that the UNRWA's original statement may have a great deal of validity.

So the real issue here is how the war is covered. All sides here deserve a critical approach to their propaganda, whether it comes from the IDF, folks like Mads Gilbert, or the UNRWA. I think that it is great that the NYT has printed this story because it helps show the human side to the conflict, and its human costs, as well as personalizing the tragedy of the non-combatants caught in the crossfire between the region's most powerful military, and a terrorist group strong enough to seize complete control over Gaza by force.
1.13.2009 2:48pm
Mike 'Ralph' Smith:

When a terrorist has babies strapped all over his body as human shields, and the terrorist is shooting missiles at his victims, the extreme left-winger brands the victim a murderer when the victim shoots back at the terrorist and accidentally and unintentionally kills a baby.


Well done. This is more extreme absurdity than anything Sarcastro can even imagine.
1.13.2009 3:13pm
Mike 'Ralph' Smith:

Our primary mission is simply to do whatever we can to reduce or eliminate the inaccurate, opinionated and agenda drive reporting of the Washington Post on issues relating to Israel and the disputed territories.


Wouldn't that be the "occupied territories" instead of the "disputed teritories?"
1.13.2009 3:17pm
Mike 'Ralph' Smith:

But if you make Atheism a religeon, then Bruce totally wins!


Good point; when the last time you heard of a totally evil agnostic? There so damn wishy washy, they can't get off their fat ass to persecute worth shit.
1.13.2009 3:24pm
Xanthippas (mail) (www):
Shorter: "The NY Times slightly agrees with me, therefore I shall slightly temper my criticism."
1.13.2009 3:59pm
Steve H:

"[R]ightly or wrongly"? Israel has made efforts to spare the lives of civilians unprecedented in any modern armed conflict: this is not simple opinion, but objective, opbserved and reported fact. To suggest that it is merely a self-serving justification entertained by Israel's populace is staggering.


Outside of, you know, not shooting at them at all.
1.13.2009 6:45pm
Elliot123 (mail):
"Cheer all you like, Mr. Bernstein, but Israel clearly is afraid to let journalists in to let the truth of their actions be shown."

We have no reason to think journalists show the truth. Israel probably remembers the photoshop pictures from Lebanon and the body being pulled out of the ambulance and posed. CNN did pretty good the other day with the CPR video.
1.13.2009 6:53pm
LM (mail):
Mike 'Ralph' Smith:

When a terrorist has babies strapped all over his body as human shields, and the terrorist is shooting missiles at his victims, the extreme left-winger brands the victim a murderer when the victim shoots back at the terrorist and accidentally and unintentionally kills a baby.

I doubt these folks would appreciate being called "extreme left wingers." And they have have a fair point. In all my years of indoctrination by the extreme left, I never heard a decent explanation for why Jews hate the Internet so much.
1.13.2009 7:14pm
flyerhawk:
Wow. The New York Times is biased against Israel? I am... at a loss for words on that. Mr. Sulzberger clearly has some identity issues.

I guess if you ever show anything sympathetic to the Palestinians you are clearly against Israel?
1.13.2009 11:32pm
einhverfr (mail) (www):
On a side note, I completely support Bernstein's attempts to raise funds for the Magen David Adom (the Israeli equivalent of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, such as the PRCS). This organization is the Israeli member org of the ICRC, and the ICRC is doing excellent work in Gaza.

Kudos for Bernstein for helping to promote the ICRC and related orgs!
1.14.2009 12:06am
Yankev (mail):

The New York Times is biased against Israel? I am... at a loss for words on that. Mr. Sulzberger clearly has some identity issues.
Clearly he does, as do his predecessors. An earlier publisher of the same paper (I forget whether it Sulzberger's father, grandfather or father-in-law) reacted to the establishment of the State of Israel by telling a non-Jewish acquaintance "I hereby resign from the Jewish people," earning the reply "I was not aware that the Jewish was a club from which one could resign."

During the Second World War, the NYT deliberately buried or discounted stories about the deazth camps and other German atrocities against the Jews. Before the war, the NYT pooh-poohed the idea that Hitler would try to carry out any of the programs he laid out in Mein Kampf.
1.14.2009 2:14pm
Nekulturny (mail):
"flyerhawk:
Wow. The New York Times is biased against Israel? I am... at a loss for words on that. Mr. Sulzberger clearly has some identity issues."

Did you know that Mr. Sulzberger is an Episcopalian?


The NYT indeed has a long history of trying not to be characterized as a "Jewish newspaper."

But since "Sulzberger" SOUNDS Jewish, why bother thinking?
1.14.2009 4:31pm
Yankev (mail):
Nekulturny,

Thanks for the link. I knew that previous publishers had been Jewish -- I did not realize that Pinch was not and never was. Your link does document what I had suggested, though -- the prior publishers bent over backwards to avoid identifying with Israel or with defending Jews from those who want to exterminate them.
1.14.2009 6:56pm

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