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May 15, 2016 6:53 am

The New York Times Gets Lost in Jerusalem

avatar by Ira Stoll

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Pisgat Ze'ev, Jerusalem. Photo: Wikipedia.

Pisgat Ze’ev, Jerusalem. Photo: Wikipedia.

A New York Times dispatch from Jerusalem about a court’s conviction of a Palestinian teenager for the October 2015 stabbing of two Israelis — a 13-year-old boy and a man — describes the city’s Pisgat Ze’ev neighborhood as being “in a part of the city that Israel conquered from Jordan in the 1967 war and annexed in a move that was never internationally recognized.”

As so often in newspaper articles, the bias shows through in the decision to choose when to begin telling the story. Did Jerusalem’s history begin in 1967? Wikipedia’s entry on the neighborhood reports that “three ritual baths from the Second Temple period have been excavated in Pisgat Ze’ev” — evidence of Jewish population dating back 2,000 years. The entry goes on to report that “overlooking the neighborhood is Tell el-Ful, believed to be the capital of the Tribe of Judah and site of the Israelite King Saul’s palace.” It further reports that in the 1930s, land nearby was bought “by European Jews for the establishment of a Jewish farming cooperative, Havatzelet Binyamin. Most of the landowners died in the Holocaust.”

Jordan’s control of Jerusalem was never internationally recognized either. The Times doesn’t mention that. Not even the other Arab countries recognized it, though Britain, the outgoing colonial power, did. By now, Israel has controlled eastern Jerusalem for far longer than Jordan’s brief tenure there during the period from the end of the British mandate in 1948 (or Jordan’s formal annexation of the city in 1950) to the Six Day War in 1967.

Anyway, it’s hard to imagine that such a territorial dispute justifies the stabbing of a 13-year-old Israeli — or any Israeli, for that matter. So it’s not clear why the Times even bothers to delve into the matter at all, except to leave a one-sided and misleading impression about which side of the conflict has a stronger claim to the land where the attack took place.

More of Ira Stoll’s media critique, a regular Algemeiner feature, can be found here.

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  • Martin Bookspan

    It now sounds to me as my own broken record, but I’ll say it once again: Every Jew worldwide should never again buy the N. Y. Times at a newsstand. And those who subscribe to that so-called “newspaper” should immediately cancel their subscription…….

    • Pat O’Connor

      It’s not only Jews who should not purchase the rag, but non-Jews (like me) too.

  • When it comes to Israel and Zionism, the NYT is permanently lost. This is as a result of biased editorial policy and the refusal to accept historical facts / evidence.

  • for the nyt, the illegal Jordanian occupation of east Jerusalem (you know, including the Temple Mount, the Western Wall, the Jewish Quarter, Mt of Olives, etc., etc.) is an occupation that must be vindicated. the Jordanian ethnic cleansing (every single Jew who was not killed was expelled from areas under Jordanian control) must be repeated. that’s what, for the nyt, would be fair and just. that’s the position of the nyt and the dummies who “report” for it…because, ya see, these dummies are, in their own minds, virtuous defenders of truth and the rights of the underdog and they’ve made it their business to slam the Jews whenever and however they can. they don’t need no stinking facts. they’ve got their opinions.

    the dummies at the nyt don’t know it but the 1948 Jordanian occupation of the “west bank” and Jerusalem was aggressive, not defensive as in Israel’s 1967 response to Jordanian attacks. that doesn’t make a difference to the nyt: the Jews can’t stay in their ancient capital, their capital for thousands of years before the Muslim invasion.

    so, here’s a clue about nyt bias: the history of Jerusalem, for nyt, does in fact start on June 12, 1967. the fact of a Jewish majority in Jerusalem dating back at least as far as the mid-19th century is unknown to the journalistic geniuses of the nyt. similarly, Jerusalem’s role as the ancient capital of Israel is unknown or a matter of indifference. and, of course, the nyt knows nothing of the rights conferred under the League of Nations. Israel’s rights, rights superior to those of any other claimant, are unknown to the nyt.

    for the nyt, a big dose of ignorance, a substantial helping of bias, can be neatly folded into another drive-by on Israel…just weave it into the story…after awhile, the reader will just accept nyt bias as fact.

  • Nancy Brenner

    Excellent article!

  • Dave

    Typical NYT trash. This rag has become a disgrace to all it once stood for in honest and accurate reporting.

  • Reform School

    MAD’s “All the News that Fits we Print” New York Times was lost over a hundred years ago.

  • Lia

    Must be great fun to meet a NYT reporter. They seem to swallow every single thing one tells them and there’s no editorial oversight. Think of the joys in store …