Monday, September 09, 2013

Jerusalem Report article on pro-Israel bloggers

The Jerusalem Report is a monthly magazine that I subscribed to for a number of years up until 2011 when I could no longer stomach its left-wing anti-Zionist bias any longer (to give a feel for some of its typical nonsense check out the last section of my blog posting here). Well, today Elder of Ziyon and IsraellyCool both report on an article in the Jerusalem Report about pro-Israel bloggers in which they are featured. This is very interesting given the following self-explanatory letter I wrote in 2011 to cancel my subscription  (I also reproduce the response I got from Editor-in-Chief Eetta Prince-Gibson, who seems to miss the point that having the occasional 'pro-Israel article' does not address my particular concerns. It's a bit like finally finding a single Spurs calender in shop which sells hundreds of Arsenal calendars only to discover that half of the pictures in the Spurs calendar are of Arsenal players 'in order to provide a balanced view'):


Cancellation of subscription number 5631598 (Jerusalem Report)

I have an annual subscription that is automatically deducted from my credit card. I wish to cancel this subscription.

The reason for my cancellation is very simple. I can no longer tolerate the number of anti-Israel, Islamist apologist articles in the magazine written by  uninformed leftist writers such as Annie Roiphe, Danny Rubsenstein, Mona Eltahawy** and Kessel.  Every newspaper and magazine in the UK prints ignorant, poorly researched and argued anti-Israel articles such as these, so why do I need to pay for an Israeli publication printing the same?

The Jerusalem Report should consider getting some new writers - there are many fantastic bloggers (across the political spectrum) offering genuine in-depth insights on Israel matters that make your writers look quite pathetic. Have a look at some of these and you will see what I mean:

If and when you publish decent quality material like that I would certainly resubscribe. But given the views of the editor I guess I will be waiting a long time.


Dear Mr Davidson

The subscriptions department has forwarded your email to me, in which you express your displeasure with the current "political line" of The Jerusalem Report.

I hope you don't mind that I have taken the liberty of responding to you directly.

First of all, please do allow me to thank you for taking the time to state the reasons for your displeasure.  As Editor-in-Chief, I, together with all the staff, value our readers' opinions.

But I do hope that you will also allow me to differ with your assessment. First of all, I do not think that we are anti-Israel.  While we are critical, as, I believe, a newsmagazine should be, we are proudly Israeli and proudly Zionist.

The Jerusalem Report seeks to provide its readers with a balanced view of events in Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World, with a wide variety of opinions and positions, from very different socio-political positions. In addition to the columnists you mentioned, may I draw your attention to the other columnists and op-ed contributors, may I also point out that regular contributors also include, for example, Amiel Ungar (who describes himself as a right-winger), Robert Hornstein, Bruce Maddy-Weitzman and others whose opinions are very different from those of, for example, Anne Roiphie or Kessel (who is not a regular contributor.)  We have also published op-eds from authors such as Gerald Steinberg, head of the NGO Monitor and from the Israel-based Im-Tirzu.

May I also point out that, from the UK itself, we have been proud to print an extensive critique of the boycott-divestment-sanctions movement and a review of the most recent book by Anthony Julius by Winston Pickett, a well-regarded pro-Israel resident of the UK.

I appreciate the list of bloggers that you have presented, some of whom I am familiar with and some of whose work I hope to get to know, thanks to your list. However, The Report does not usually include bloggers because their articles are not vetted by a professional editorial staff.

I do want to note that your wrote "given the views of the editor I guess I will be waiting a long time."  I personally see myself as a Zionist and am proud to live in Jerusalem, but the views of this editor, whatever the are, are not the substance of the magazine.

Lastly, I do want to invite you to either write to us or, even better, to write a letter to the editor, whenever you feel that our research is inadequate or sloppy....we pride ourselves on our in-depth reporting and research, so if you "catch" us when we are remiss, we would appreciate knowing it.

I hope you will reconsider your decision and would welcome all of your feedback,

Eetta Prince-Gibson
The Jerusalem Report 

**I think I was the first to publicly flag Mona Eltahawy as an Israel-hating, Islamist supramacist - see some of her more recent exploits here and here.That an Israeli magazine should be employing her is pretty contemptible.

Saturday, September 07, 2013

Israeli leftists' suicidal determination to help Syrians who promise to kill them

JC article - click to read
This is not about the Israeli hospitals quietly treating Syrians injured in the civil war, but rather a story of Israelis putting themselves in harm's way to help people who promise to kill them.

The story - in this week's Jewish Chronicle - perfectly captures the naive and dangerous mindset of Israeli leftists, who simply cannot get it into their heads that the world's anti-Semites do not hate them any less than they hate any other Israelis or Jews.

It is the story of a leftist Israeli NGO (non governmental organisation) whose volunteers have been risking their lives actually going into Syria to provide aid - according to the article this includes 300,000 meals and five ambulances. While this sounds like a very noble venture, such is the risk of what they are doing that the name of the NGO cannot be revealed, and the volunteers lack any protection - meaning they could easily be taken hostage and hence ultimately risk the lives of many Israelis in trying to free them.  But the most important message in the story is the statement by the Syrian rebel commander (these are the guys the USA and UK are supporting remember) who has been aided by this NGO, who told the Israelis helping them:
"Let me finish with them [the Syrian government], and then I'm coming for you."