The Times in the second half of 2011: 39-8 anti-Israel
Soccer Dad puts together a tally of pro and anti-Israel op-eds for July - December 2011. By my count, it's 39-8 for the anti's.
New York Times Op-Ed Index summary for July - December 2011
July 2011 - Anti-Israel 5 / Pro-Israel 2
August 2011 - Anti-Israel 4 / Pro-Israel 0
September 2011 - Anti-Israel – 14 / Pro-Israel 1
October 2011 - Anti-israel - 6 / Pro-Israel - 3
November 2011 - Anti-Israel - 6 / Pro-Israel - 2
December 2011 - Anti-Israel 4 / Pro-Israel 0
The final tally for the last six months of 2011, is 38 anti-Israel opinion articles and 7 pro-Israel opinion articles; a ratio of more than 5 to 1. (I double counted one of each at the end of October and beginning of November. The dates in the papers archive differ from the actual date appearing in the article.)
Clearly September was the worst month with fourteen anti-Israel op-eds. It's important to remember that in September Mahmoud Abbas was pursuing the unilateral declaration of independence (UDI) at the UN. The opinion articles therefore served as providing support for the UDI effort.
Even though the official New York Times editorial position was that Israel and the Palestinians needed to negotiate, at least four of the op-eds I counted either implicitly or explicitly supported the UDI. Despite the official editorial stance, it's pretty clear that the editors of the New York Times were not especially upset by Abbas's effort to bypass the negotiations. (Additionally Abbas wrote an op-ed for the New York Times in which he explicitly spelled out his intent to use the UDI to pursue diplomatic action against Israel. An editorial appearing ten days later didn't even mention the op-ed.)
Perhaps the lowest blow was the publishing of an op-ed by Netanyahu's predecessor, Ehud Olmert. Olmert argued that even though he made an offer to Abbas that was rejected, it was up to Netanyahu to make the same (or better) offer to Abbas because it was essential to make a deal. Aside from the absolutely incomprehensible negotiating advice (tell the guy who refused to negotiate in good faith that he hasn't lost anything) the op-ed was written by a disgraced politician, who has no credibility in Israel.
Prior to the UDI effort, it was reported that the PLO had hired a PR firm. Given the editorial support of the Palestinians by the New York Times, one has to wonder if the money was wasted.
Labels: Middle East Media Sampler, New York Times, Soccer Dad