Saturday, March 17th | 1 Nisan 5778


Be in the know!

Get our exclusive daily news briefing.

July 13, 2016 12:39 pm

The New York Times Ignores Huge Story of State Department Using Tax Dollars in Anti-Netanyahu Scheme

avatar by Ira Stoll

Email a copy of "The New York Times Ignores Huge Story of State Department Using Tax Dollars in Anti-Netanyahu Scheme" to a friend
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry address reporters in Jerusalem, on December 5, 2013. Photo: GPO.

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US Secretary of State John Kerry. Photo: GPO.

The State Department spent US taxpayer dollars funding a political campaign against Benjamin Netanyahu, then destroyed emails that documented the campaign, a US Senate investigation found.

It’s big news, as several journalistic institutions recognized this week. “The State Dept. Plan to Bring Down Netanyahu,” was the headline that Tablet used in an email to promote its news article. “Senate report: State Dept. grant also aided campaign to unseat Netanyahu,” was the headline over Politico’s story.

Over at the Council on Foreign Relations, Elliott Abrams, a former State Department and National Security official, wrote a blog post about the situation. “Is foreign intervention in Israeli politics a serious issue? You bet, and one of the main culprits turns out to be the United States of America,” Mr. Abrams wrote. Mr. Abrams also pointed out the hypocrisy — Prime Minister Netanyahu was accused by critics of meddling in American politics by speaking to Congress against the Iran deal, yet here was the Obama administration funding a campaign to oust the Israeli premier from office.

The Washington Post found it worthy of coverage, too: “Senate investigation says top U.S. diplomat deleted emails,” said one Post headline, over an Associated Press article. “NGO connected to Obama’s 2008 campaign used US dollars trying to oust Netanyahu,” was the headline over another Washington Post account of the news.

What has the New York Times deemed fit to pass along to its readers about this highly newsworthy situation? Not a single word. Nada. Zilch. Bupkis. Granted, it’s been a heavy news week, what with the presidential campaign in full swing and the Dallas police shootings. But the Washington Post and Politico, facing the same heavy news week with smaller editorial staffs than the Times, managed to serve their readers by covering the news rather than ignoring or suppressing it.

What Israel news has the Times been busy with instead? Well, there is a long feature about Honeymoon Israel. The Times describes it as:

an organization in Buffalo that offers interfaith partners, including gay and lesbian couples, subsidized 10-day trips to Israel.

The trips cost $1,800 a couple — or about 20 percent of the total cost — with the remainder picked up by a Jewish family foundation in Boston (which prefers to be unnamed), as well as by Jewish organizations in the cities where Honeymoon Israel operates.

The Times’ reticence to name the Boston-based foundation is either comical or cowardly here, since the foundation was already named in articles about Honeymoon Israel that appeared in the Washington Jewish Week, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Haaretz, and several other places and that are easily discoverable online to anyone with access to Google.

But it does offer at least one possible explanation for why the Times found the news of the State Department’s document-destruction and meddling in Israeli politics, and the US Senate report on the subject, unfit to print. Maybe the State Department preferred that the Times not write about it. After all, if the newspaper’s new practice is going to be to edit the news by withholding information from readers whenever the funders, article subjects or participants in newsworthy events “prefer” that the information be left out, where does it end?

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

The opinions presented by Algemeiner bloggers are solely theirs and do not represent those of The Algemeiner, its publishers or editors. If you would like to share your views with a blog post on The Algemeiner, please be in touch through our Contact page.

Share this Story: Share On Facebook Share On Twitter Email This Article

Let your voice be heard!

Join the Algemeiner
  • Yale

    Two questions for the Times:

    1) How many of the deleted emails about this were on Hillary’s home server?

    2) How much do you get from the State Department to maintain your anti-Netanyahu and anti-Israel policy?

  • Teaneck to Boca

    To think non-practicing Jews own the Times. They haven’t changed since WWII. A shanda fur die goy

  • Lia

    I just wondered: do many NYT journalists study at NYU?

  • Reform School

    Do you really expect an unindicted co-conspirator to blab?

  • Close down the NYT as it is an Islam and Obama rag. It serves no purpose other than to sow seeds of hate and protect Obama and his gang of Islamists. DO NOT BUY THE NYT.

  • richard sherwin

    all the news thats print to fit the NYT biasses, prejudices, and contempt of democracy, jewish religion, and israel(i)s not truckling under to the nyt’s view of what the world it wasnt elected by anyone to run should be doing. slander, insinuation, lies by ommission and sometimes commission… the nyt editorial policy easily inferable from their texts.

  • stevenl

    NYT antisemitism is everywhere to see.

  • Jonathan Mishkin

    Yet another, out-of-context, over hyped story from Ira Stoll, who clearly has too much time on his hands. Five quick points:

    1. Per the Politico story, “The [bipartisan] report found no legal wrongdoing by the State Department.”

    2. We are talking about all of $349,000, only a portion of which was alleged to have been used inappropriately. Sorry, but in the context of a national political campaign, in Israel or the United States, that is chump change.

    3. I am touched that Mr. Stoll is so sensitive to alleged US government involvement in the 2015 Israeli elections. I am struggling to find Mr. Stoll’s article criticizing Netanyahu’s implicit endorsement of Mitt Romney in 2012. Or Bibi’s back of the hand treatment of President Obama during the Iran treaty debate.

    4. But easily the most galling thing about Mr. Stoll’s piece is that today, the NY Times ran a most sensitive and sympathetic interview with Prime Minister Netanyahu about his relationship with his brother, Yoni. Bibi gave the interview to the Times’ east Africa correspondent just prior to his visit to Africa last week. Not a single mention of that article from Mr. Stoll. I looked and looked, but found no such interview in either Politico, the Wall Street Journal or the New York Post. Perhaps we should investigate those publications for anti-Semitism.

    5. I did see an article in Politico from last week about Netanyahu’s deteriorating relationship with the Israeli security establishment. You know them; those left wing, self hating Jews who actually have to lead Israel into battle and fight its wars. Not surprisingly, Mr. Stoll was silent on this article. Not politically correct.

    • YW

      There is a huge difference between overt (by Netanyahu) and covert (by Obama’s and Hilary Clinton’s State Department) actions, Mr. Mishkin.

      The amount of money you cite, which you describe as “chump change,” is nevertheless US taxpayer provided money, which the US taxpayers and the US Congress surely did not authorize. Even if it was 349 pennies, this is not kosher, and you know it.

      And even if there was no finding of “legal wrongdoing” by the State Department, why were the emails destroyed afterward? This sounds like the same kind of finding of no “legal wrongdoing” that was recently used to explain away Ms. Clinton’s shenanigans during her tenure as Secretary of State.

      The emails pertaining to the State Department’s actions against Netanyahu were destroyed for the same corrupt and self-serving reasons that Hilary Clinton destroyed hers.

      And the detail that the report was from a “bipartisan” committee, doesn’t mean a thing. Haters of Israel (and/or of Netanyahu) come in all political stripes.