May 21, 2024
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Adelson & Saban Want to Buy the New York Times

New York–Despite their significant political differences, two business leaders who cooperate on Israel and jointly founded the IAC have discussed buying the New York Times in order to ensure that Israel gets more balanced coverage from non-conservative media.

As reported in the Jewish Business News, the two co-founders of the Israeli-American Council, Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban, have discussed buying the New York Times. They seek to take this action because they believe that the New York Times presently does not cover Israel in an objective manner and they hope that such a purchase would permit mainstream American media to behave more objectively.

In an interview Manfred Gerstenfeld conducted for Arutz Sheva with Ricki Hollander and Gilead Ini, senior analysts at the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA), they confirm Adelson’s and Saba’s viewpoint of the New York Times: “The New York Times (NYT) is guilty of advocacy journalism. Both its editorial pages and news reporting lean heavily toward an anti-Israel perspective. This is in blunt contravention of its directive to journalists in the Ethical Journalism handbook it publishes, ‘to cover the news as impartially as possible’ and ‘tell our readers the complete, unvarnished truth as best we can learn it.’”

“Without employing the type of crude incitement against Israelis that is rampant in Palestinian society, the NYT poisons the public’s mind against Israel by shaping the perception of the Jewish state as responsible for many, if not most, of the region’s ills,” they stressed. “It does this with double standards in reporting about Israel versus her enemies and recounting only half the story. It sanitizes the role of Israel’s adversaries, including terrorist organizations, and obsessively indicts Israel at every turn.”

According to the Nation, the two philanthropists also sought to purchase the Washington Post for covering Israel in a similar manner and were disturbed that didn’t pan out when the newspaper was recently on the market. However, the idea of purchasing the New York Times and other American newspapers in order to ensure balanced coverage for Israel is not the only way that both Adelson and Saban have been cooperating in recent days. Both philanthropists founded the IAC jointly, even though they share different views on American and Israeli politics. Adelson supports the Republican Party, while Saban wants Hillary Clinton to return to the White House.

However, when it comes to issues that are important to Israel, such as Iran, both Saban and Adelson have similar views. The Forward reported that Adelson stated at the Israeli-American Council’s Inaugural Conference that if any deal does not satisfy Israel, if he was the Israeli Prime Minister, he “would not just talk. I would take action.” Saban went a step further: “A stick and a carrot yes, but I think that we showed too many carrots and a very small stick.” In his viewpoint, if any Iran deal is unsatisfactory, Israel should “bomb the living daylight out of these sons of bitches.”

Yet on one issue of importance to Israel, the negotiations with the Palestinians, there are differences between Saban and Adelson. Adelson is a Netanyahu supporter, while Saban wants the Labor Party in power. To highlight this point, the Forward reported that Adelson agreed with Newt Gingrich that the Palestinians are an invented people and declared that he supports building a big wall to protect Israel. Saban, for his part, agreed with Adelson that the Palestinians have no history in the region, but emphasized that he is still committed to the two-state for two peoples’ solution.

But despite their differences, both Adelson and Saban established the Israeli-American Council in order to organize the over 600,000 Israelis living in the United States into a political lobby that will promote the interests of Israeli expats, strengthen Israel as well as the American Jewish community and promote American-Israeli relations. As Adelson stated at the IAC’s Inaugural Conference, “Everyone in this room, whether you’re a Republican, Democrat or Independent, when it comes to Israel, we are on the same side.” While the IAC’s model is based upon AIPAC, the Nation reported that IAC differs from AIPAC in the sense that it is an Israeli-centric rather than American organization and as a result, IAC champions Israeli bluntness, while AIPAC is more discreet regarding their agenda.

By Rachel Avraham/www.jerusalemonline.com

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