Netanyahu’s Daily Paper, Courtesy of the Richest Jew on Earth

Posted: April 29th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: media, The Right | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »


Talking to none-Israeli friends, I am often asked about the political affiliation of Israeli publications, or of certain reporters. So I have decided to dedicate a few posts to the Hebrew media, with an emphasis on the political role it plays (I don’t know the Israeli Media in Arabic and Russian well enough to comment on it).

I will start with a new and unique phenomena: A paper that was established to promote the interests of a specific politician, one Benjamin Netanyahu.

There are other major papers in the West which are known to support political parties or a certain ideology – but I don’t know of any paper that was launched with the intent to gain political influence, to promote one persons’ campaign to power, and doesn’t even attempt to make profit.

Israel Hayom is a free daily tabloid in Hebrew, established in 2008. Its Publisher is the American multi billionaire Sheldon Adelson, “the richest Jew on earth”, who made his fortune in the Casino business in Las Vegas and Macao. The paper has a circulation of 255,000 copies on weekdays, and currently has no Weekend edition. According to the January 2009 TGI poll, Israel Hayom is read by 23.2 percent of the Jewish public, which makes it second only to the tabloid “Yedioth Ahronoth”. The paper’s chief editor is Amos Regev. Israel Hayom has a web site in Hebrew that presents the paper’s printed edition in PDF format.

Sheldon Adelson, the owner on Israel Hayom (the name means “Israel Today” in Hebrew) is a known supporter of the Republican Party, George W Bush and Benjamin Netanyahu. Adelson never hid his discontent with the Israeli media, which, he often claimed, is biased to the left and not appreciative enough towards Netanyahu.
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Ari Shavit

Posted: January 1st, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: In the News, war | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Something bad overcomes Haaretz’s Ari Shavit when he smells gunfire.

On August 11 2006, for some obscure reason, Haaretz published Shavit’s op-ed as the top story on the paper’s front page. It was three days before the end of the 2nd Lebanon war, and Shavit’s article called for PM Olmert resignation if he were to accept the UN security council cease-fire resolution without engaging in a massive ground operation against the Hezbollah.

The ground operation did start that night. It turned out to be the war’s biggest failure, claiming the lives of 33 soldiers. Two days later, Israel accepted the security council cease-fire resolution. Some sources – including military reporters Ofer Shelah and Yoav Limor in their book about the war – claim that Shavit’s article had a major influence on the decision to approve the ground invasion.

I don’t remember Shavit – nor his editors in Haaretz who chose to place his article as their front page statement – ever taking responsibility for their call, or even explaining it. Instead, Shavit became Olmerts greatest critic, calling for his resignation on a weekly basis.

Now Shavit has a new enemy. It’s the Israelis who oppose the war. His ugly article in today’s Haaretz showed Shavit’s utter lack of any understanding of Democracy – but more importantly, that even 33 dead soldiers couldn’t teach him some modesty. That’s what makes the journalists so different from politicians – there is nobody to ask them to resign.