Wednesday, August 07, 2013

New York Times Corrects Error In Rudoren's Article On Israel (But She's Not Alone)

Can't anyone here report on Israel without twisting the facts?

The most well known of the recent distortions in the news about Israel are Jodi Rudoren's articles in the New York Times.

WFB's Adam Kredo eviscerated Rudoren today in All the Anti-Israel News That’s Fit to Print:
The New York Times Jerusalem bureau chief Jodi Rudoren is under renewed criticism from the pro-Israel community for articles critics say slant toward the Palestinian Authority and misrepresent U.S. policy towards Israel.

Pro-Israel officials have once again questioned Rudoren’s journalistic objectivity following two recent articles that they say favorably portrayed Palestinian stone throwers and falsely claimed that the United States considers Israeli settlements illegal.

Rudoren has displayed a pro-Palestinian bias since her appointment last year and may have been influenced by one of Israel’s top opponents, these critics say.
Jodi Rudoren
Jodi Rudoren -- Not alone in getting facts on Israel wrong.
Credit: Twitter Account

In one article, Rudoren's one-sided sympathetic piece on Palestinian rock attacks on Israelis referred to those attacks as "hobbies" and "rites of passage," while omitting the names of the victims, and neglecting to mention that those responsible for deaths were guilty of murder

However, it was the other article -- Israeli Decree on West Bank Settlements Will Harm Peace Talks, Palestinians Say -- that resulted in a correction by the New York Times.

Rudoren originally wrote:
The United States, along with most of the world, considers these settlements illegal, and some of them sit in the heart of the area imagined as a future Palestinian state.
Kredo noted that Rudoren was flat out wrong in going out on a limb like that:
However, this statement is factually inaccurate, according to Middle East experts and an analysis of official U.S. policy on Israeli settlements since 1949.

“This is not the declared policy of the United States,” Steven Rosen, a former top official at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), wrote in a 2012 analysis of U.S. policy.

“Successive U.S. administrations have deplored settlement activity as an obstacle to peace, but no American president—except Jimmy Carter—has taken the view that building Jewish homes in Jerusalem constitutes a violation of the Geneva conventions,” wrote Rosen, currently director of the Washington Project of the Middle East Forum.

While Carter stated in 1980 that he considered the settlements illegal, every presidential administration of the last 30 years—as well as those before Carter’s—has refused to state this as U.S. policy.
The New York Times has now corrected Rudoren's mistake, now noting at the end of the article:
An earlier version of this article misstated the United States’ view of the West Bank settlements seized by Israel in the 1967 war. While much of the rest of the world considers them illegal, for several decades the United States has not taken a position on the settlements’ legality; In a statement on Tuesday, the State Department said, “We do not accept the legitimacy of continued settlement activity.”
As it so happens, when it comes to erroneous reporting on Israel, Rudoren has company.

Today, Lenny Ben David noted an error Thomas Friedman made in his column:

No word yet on a correction.

However CNN has made a correction to an error they made. CAMERA notes on their site: CAMERA Prompts CNN Correction on Jerusalem:
CAMERA staff has elicited correction of a July 21 article on CNN International's Web site, which had incorrectly reported that Israel annexed eastern Jerusalem from "the Palestinian territories." We first addressed the error on our Snapshots blog, and noted also that an earlier version of the CNN article had wrongly referred to Tel Aviv as Israel's capital. The error concerning Jerusalem and the updated, corrected text follow:
As the CNN correction admits:
An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated who controlled East Jerusalem in the years immediately prior to the Arab-Israeli Six-Day War. East Jerusalem was under Jordan's control when it was taken over by Israel in the 1967 war.
Thomas Friedman

Can't anyone get the facts on Israel right?

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