Saturday, June 28, 2008


Here is what Neoconservatives Commentary magazines's blog, Contentions, think about Haaretz

srael’s newspaper of record has suffered from a flagrant political bias of what can be called the “Left”: Its antipathy to capitalism, and especially its belief that all of Israel’s woes are to be blamed not on Arab bellicosity but rather on Israel’s occupation and settlement policies, made Haaretz the standard-bearer for a very specific, rapidly dwindling audience.

Not any more. According to the Jerusalem Post’s Calev Ben-David, over the last few months many of Haaretz’s writers — Akiva Eldar, Danny Rubinstein, Gideon Levi, and Amira Hass, to name the most notable — have been either released or had their space significantly curtailed, and a new, more moderate era has begun under the leadership of the paper’s new editor, Dov Alfon.

The essence of the problem, we may assume, is business: As the Israeli economy has boomed because of market reforms, and optimism about peace has vanished in the wake of the Second Intifada and the rise of Hamas, fewer and fewer readers want to hear what Haaretz’s editors have been saying. But lest you think there’s an actual ideological change happening, here’s what Amos Schocken, the paper’s longtime owner, has to say about the shift:

I understand there are those readers who want Haaretz to look like a protest [manifesto] against the occupation - for example, Ashkenazi, secular and righteous, and focused on the occupation. But a newspaper is not a protest [manifesto]; it’s a newspaper. By the way, Haaretz was against the occupation before Amira Hass and Meron [Rappaport], and it will be after them. And don’t misunderstand me. I am certainly of the view that the occupation is Israel’s most severe ailment, one that endangers its very existence. If it were possible, then, I would be ready to be the publisher of a newspaper that solely campaigned against the occupation till its end. The problem is that some of those protesting against the occupation also want to know what is happening in the shops of Comme Il Faut [a clothing chain]. So we were concerned that they wouldn’t take out a subscription to the newspaper that I am prepared to be the publisher of.

Here is Amos Schocken explaining that:

Citizenship law makes Israel an apartheid state

The amendment to the Citizenship Law is exactly the kind of practice that leads to the use of such a term, and it is best that we not try to evade the truth: Its existence in the law books turns Israel into an apartheid state.

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