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Monday, May 20, 2019

(JNS and combined sources) Israeli Ambassador to the United States Ron Dermer said this week that The New York Times has become a “cesspool of hostility” amid the publication’s international edition featuring anti-Semitic cartoons on April 25 over the same weekend that a Chabad-Lubavitch synagogue in Southern California was attacked by a gunman who killed one woman and injured three others, including a child.

Dermer, attributing the tragedy at the Chabad of Poway to white supremacists, said that “we have also seen anti-Semitism increasingly poison minds in the political classes of what once proudly called itself the West.”

“We have also seen one of the world’s most prestigious newspapers become a cesspool of hostility towards Israel that goes well beyond any legitimate criticism of a fellow, imperfect democracy,” he said.

“The same New York Times that a century ago mostly hid from their readers the Holocaust of the Jewish people has today made its pages a safe space for those who hate the Jewish state. Through biased coverage, slanderous columns and anti-Semitic cartoons, its editors shamefully choose week after week to cast the Jewish state as a force for evil.”

The Times apologized for the April 25 cartoon and, according to The Daily Beast, has cut ties with the syndication service behind the image.

Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon said the apology was insufficient.

“Those who engage in anti-Semitism must be punished, whether it’s here at the U.N., political leaders, editors, policy pundits or college professors,” he said. “...I think somebody should be accountable.”

In an editorial printed on Tuesday, April 30, the editorial board of the Times acknowledged that the paper had published “an appalling political cartoon” that “is evidence of a profound danger—not only of anti-Semitism but of numbness to its creep, to the insidious way this ancient, enduring prejudice is once again working itself into public view and common conversation.” Addressing its earlier apology, the editorial stated, “Apologies are important, but the deeper obligation of the Times is to focus on leading through unblinking journalism and the clear editorial expression of its values… As the world once again contends with [anti-Semitism], it is not enough to refrain from empowering it. It is necessary to stand in opposition.”