The Jerusalem Post’s Gutlessness

Blogger Joe Settler posts on how the Jerusalem Post seemingly caved in to pressure from an anti-Israel blogger called Seth Freedman, and My Right Word neatly summarizes the chain of events.

Let’s make it simple:

1. Seth Freedman publishes a takedown of Israel.

2. Edwin Bennatan published a takedown of Seth.

3. David Horowitz, JP editor, takes down Bennatan’s piece – literally – he censors it out completely.

4. David Horowitz then publishes this apology:

Thursday Sep 11, 2008
Point / Counterpoint: Apology to Seth FreedmanPosted by staff

The Jerusalem Post would like to apologize to Seth Freedman for certain comments that appeared on our site following a September 1 blog entry written by Edwin Bennatan that were defamatory, threatening, and inappropriate.

The Jerusalem Post apologizes for any distress caused to Mr. Freedman, expresses its sincere regret that such a situation was allowed to occur, and will endeavour to prevent any recurrence.

A donation will be made by the Jerusalem Post to a charity of Mr Freedman’s choice.

Actually, this is not the only example of gutless placating of anti-Israel bloggers by the Post.

A few years ago, anti-Israel pest/blogger Richard Silverstein went after the Jerusalem Post for helping me to run the JIB awards.

If you take a look at their logo here you’ll notice the two sponsors: the Jerusalem Post and Israelly Cool. A little ideological background is in order. The Post at one time in its history (I know because I read it sporadically when I lived in Israel for two academic years) was a sleepy little Anglo-Israeli paper that took an uneventfully centrist political stance on Israeli politics. That all changed when Conrad Black (does he still have that Lord’s title or do they take it away once you’re accused of a felony??) bought the paper, turning it into the spitting image of his neocon, hardline pro-Likud views.

Now the kleptomaniac buccaneer is gone. Derek Fattal, the Post’s director of internet services assures me that post-Black the Post moderated its politics:

The Post’s position in the local spectrum is now straight center on most issues and I don’t think many informed pundits would currently cast us as right wing.

But that’s what George Will would say about Sam Alito’s judicial philosophy, now wouldn’t he? It all depends on where you locate your center. One could believe the paper has moderated its views. But I don’t believe it will ever fully divorce itself from Lord Black’s political philosophy.
So you have a conservative Israeli daily
allied with Israelly Cool.

Well, today, after a referral from the Post’s blog page, I noticed their blogroll:

Tikun Olam is Silverstein’s blog.

In other words, the Jerusalem Post made a conscious decision to include Richard Silverstein’s overtly anti-Israel blog on their blogroll, presumably because he raised a stink about the Post’s conservative politics. Or threatened them.

Either way, it is yet another example of the Post caving in to an anti-Israel blogger.

I have always seen the Jerusalem Post as being incompetent. I guess I will now add gutless to the list.


David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media

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