Wednesday, May 28, 2008


As a follow up to my post yesterday, Haaretz today (one day later)reports that a deal is far off.

Other Isreali media have dropped the subject altogether.

All of this further demonstrates the poor professional journalistic standards of Haaretz.

I advise all of my readers to continue writing to Haaretz editors to complain.

Letter to Ha'aretz (in reference to article reporting supposed deal reached with Hizbullah to free Israeli capives Regev and Goldvasser)

Dear Mr. Stern,

I think that you and your paper should be exercising more editorial responsibility.

Israel newspapers in general, but Haaretz in particular, are guilty of extremely poor editorial and reporting standards, as exemplified in this article. You take some remarks from an undisclosed source, who may be speculating or not in a position to know what is really going to happen, and make it into a headline story "scoop". In this case you also take the words of our arch-enemy and master propagandist Nasrallah, and present them as authoritative and the words of God. By doing so you are knowingly being used by him in his psychological warfare against the Israeli public, the families involved, in order to demoralize Israelis and apply pressure. (Maybe this is what you want, I don't know)

This amounts to tendentious reporting and cynical use of the media, something unbecoming of a major newspaper. The fact that you stipulate by saying "sources say..." does not exempt you from responsibility. I could report "sources say" on just about anything, from an impending Israeli attack on Iran to the coming of the Messiah. How many times in the past 3 years did your paper report on a supposedly impending release of Shalit? Or a cease fire with the Palestinians?

Your web news site is like that of Debka except on the other side of the political spectrum. I have no problem with a paper that has an editorial slant, but there are journalistic professional standards which you don't abide by. When I compare you with American newspapers with which I am very familiar, I cannot imagine them ever publishing a story like this at all, particularly as a lead headline.

I am at the center of the political spectrum, and I cannot help but conclude that your paper is on par with extreme left anti-zionist papers of Europe, whose editorial slant is so extreme that it loses all objectivity and accuracy. The stories in your paper are used by Arabs and other abroad as weapons against us in the war for public opinion. I have no problem with open reporting that tells the truth, but that is not what your newspaper does. This story is typical of that problem.