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August 18, 2016 4:36 am

Even in a Pro-Israel Article, the New York Times Can’t Resist Anti-Israel Barbs

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Office of The New York Times, in New York City. Photo: WikiCommons.

The New York Times headquarters. Photo: Wiki Commons.

In the New York Times, Diaa Hadid has written some surprisingly good articles in recent weeks. Earlier this week, she wrote one about how Israeli doctors, through the Save a Child’s Heart (SACH) program, saved the life of an Afghan boy in Pakistan who had a heart defect.

I’ve written about SACH in the past, and even visited it. It is a great organization that is happy to help whenever it can. It is not political and does only good.

For the most part, Hadid’s article is positive, describing how the child, Yehia, managed to get to Israel and be helped. She also gives background on SACH:

 Yehia — whose father spoke on the condition that the family name not be published for fear of a backlash if it became known he had taken the boy to Israel for treatment — is the first Afghan treated by Save a Child’s Heart in its 20 years of operations. About half the charity’s 4,000 patients have been Palestinian; 200 others were children from Iraq and Syria, and the roster includes patients from Tanzania, Ethiopia and Moldova.

But she cannot resist finding someone to accuse the dedicated doctors of SACH of “med-washing:”

 Tony Laurance, head of a group called Medical Aid for Palestine, said that while providing children “world-class surgery” was “an unequivocal good,” it should not obscure the broader impact of Israeli policies on medical care for Palestinians. Gaza hospitals are perennially short of medicine, equipment and well-trained staff because of Israeli restrictions on travel and trade, and many Gaza residents struggle to get exit permits for care outside the territory.

“What gets up my nose,” Mr. Laurance said, “is that it presents an image of Israel that betrays the reality.”

Israeli doctors saving Muslim lives “gets up his nose” because it “betrays reality”? Laurance is saying that positive articles about Israel must not be published because they blunt the impact of the unrelenting anti-Israel propaganda that he and his organization pushes.

Laurance’s idea of “reality” is that Gaza suffers shortages of medicine and equipment because of Israeli policies, a statement that Hadid does not check. It is unequivocally false. While a tiny percentage of medical equipment going into Gaza may be delayed because it could be considered dual-use, it gets through if it is legitimate. And there are no restrictions on medicines altogether. The medicine restrictions are because of infighting between Hamas and Fatah, plus Hamas stealing aid. It has nothing to do with Israel.

Laurance lied, and Hadid allowed the lie to be published unchallenged in the New York Times.

Even his statement that “many Gaza residents struggle to get exit permits ” is skewed. I have no doubt that there is paperwork to complete and approvals involved, but they are traveling to another country; the restrictions are not any worse than with most international travel. Beyond that, Mr. Laurance conveniently decides not to say a word about that other country that borders Gaza, an Arab country, which refuses virtually all patients from entering. Which calls into question the true interest he has in Medical Aid for Palestinians (the actual name of the organization); how much of it is altruistic and how much is political?

There was no reason to include his mini-diatribe in the article, and in fact, it is a jarring departure from the tone of the rest of the article. But what’s worse is that the causal reader would think that the New York Times agrees that Israel restricts medical aid to Gaza.

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  • Eric Garver MD

    Tom Laurance is a moron along with the NY Times. It’s a fact that every day Arabs from West Bank hospitals and Gaza are transported to top hospitals in Israel where the Muslims obtain the best medical care in the world. This usually is free medical care. Most people in the US can not have this level treatment. I know this for a fact based on the cases I myself treated in Israel

  • In this connection, I’ll mention that in December ’15, Rouhani held an Islamic unity conference in Teheran attended by over 300 Muslim leaders from different countries. They obsessed against Israel, and Rouhani’s grand conclusion to the conference was that they have to improve the image of Islam by uniting to eliminate Israel. Rouhani also claimed that the only party that benefits from the Syrian civil war is Israel (because — in his view — it distracts Muslims from uniting to eliminate Israel).
    The New York Times didn’t report at all on Rouhani’s anti-Israel conference. But, just days after it ended, a Times op-ed praised Rouhani’s “diplomatic style.”

  • I’m disgusted with Israel providing medical aid to Syrians, the daughter of a Hamas commander and the fact that 95% of the patients at Hadassah Hospital are Arabs.

    Do unto others as others would do unto you and the situation would dramatically change.

    The Arabs and Muslims would never do anything to help Jews.

    Tikun Olam sucks and only the weak think its OK.

  • H. Givon

    Too long ago the NYT was highly regarded based on its living up to the standard of ethics which was created to curtail anything but accuracy. Today’s article with its fabricated propaganda about Israel is an example of the daily deviation from this moral yardstick. A newspaper that values its reputation has the responsibility to demand nothing less from its journalists. No halfway measures;half a truth contaminates the whole and reflects poorly not only on its reporters but on the NYT itself.

  • Yale

    Come on, Hadid knows what she believes, and you insist on confusing her with the facts. Maybe you are media-washing (i.e., if you’re a journalist it’s OK not to know the facts before pronouncing a judgment) her ignorance.

  • Funny how it doesn’t get up Lawrence’s nose that hundreds of millions of dollars that should be going to Gazan hospitals and medicine is diverted to terror tunnels and missiles. He must have a very small nose which is capable of only accommodating a tiny piece of the reality he submits is being betrayed.

    It’s obvious that ANYTHING Israel does will be distorted for his silly and useless organization “Medical Aid for Palestine. They will even make helping dying children, for free, seem bad.

    Maybe he should sponsor a couple of seminars and workshops that actually helps getting medical aid to Gazans like:
    1. How to stop terrorism so we have plenty of money for hospitals and medicine; or
    2. How NOT to elect a terrorist government who doesn’t care about us; or
    3. Medicine not missiles- Gyms not guns and knives; or
    4. Medical training, not terrorist training summer camps for kids; or
    5. How to stop screwing ourselves by trying to screw Israel/Jews.

    GETTING THE IDEA TONY? Wake up. Israel cares more about the “Palestinians” (in fact Jordanians) than all the rest of the Arab world combined. Gaza is wonderful compared to other Arab countries in the region and would be heaven if they stopped waging terror against Israel and it’s civilians. Look at what Gaza looked like when it was given to them.

    SHAME ON YOU HADID AND THE NEW YORK TIMES FOR HELPING PERPETUATE HIS FARSE. Just another blood libel against the Jewish State.

    Am Yisrael Chai Tony!

  • Poop on the NYT and poop on Laurence and Hadid.

    • Linda

      Well said!

  • I’d like to put my fist up Laurance’s nose.

  • Art

    The NYT can not pass up a chance to denounce Israel. They are notorious in “not fact checking” (or deliberately misrepresenting) facts. Even frequently misusing photos or parts of photos to “prove” Israeli evilness. Publishing corrections is an ugly sham. It is the headlines and opening paragraph that makes an impression and a quotable history.

  • barbara strudler

    Beautifully reasoned and written article. So glad you’re
    on top of the Times’ bias. Thank you.

  • Diaa Hadid…Joseph Goebbels: no difference. NY TIMES…DER STURMER. ..NO DIFFERENCE. Case Closed.