Guardian's Israel Obsession Reaches New Heights

There is a new Seth Freedman article on CiF about the problem of teen drinking in Israel, a problem hardly unique to many countries of the world.
Now we know that substance abuse is a subject close to Seth Freedman’s heart as he was a former user in his days of “Binge Trading”. Here’s an excerpt from his book:

So I’d unlocked the gates of Cocaine Towers, and I could see myself becoming a permanent resident. I forged a friendship with my new dealer, a loaded, Knightsbridgedwelling fi nancier with a Masters in International Banking. He sold, I bought, we went out drinking together and became mates. Meanwhile, I noticed that my sleeping habits had changed. I used to sleep at night. I didn’t any more. For cocaine was a jealous god; if I was going to get on it, I had to give up all activities that got in the way – and sleep was the first to go.

But does this really justify an article on the subject-matter?

I think the first comment in the thread sums this up (except about the part of enjoying Seth Freedman’s “journalism”).


18 Nov 2009, 11:40AM
I enjoy Seth Freedman’s journalism, but is anyone other than Israelis really concerned with teen drinking in Israel? There’s a commissioning editor somewhere who’s in need of a slap.

If  you bother to visit the thread, click recommend on Hullabamoo’s comment but of course don’t comment in the thread.
The Guardian has kept the thread open all night no doubt to boost the number of comments on the Freedman thread which have been on the wane since our launch. Anyway, for your amusement, here are a selection of some of the comments demonstrating that both the anti-Israel and pro-Israel crowd are getting tired of Seth Freedman.


18 Nov 2009, 11:52AM

Israel isnt in Europe.
Who really gives a damn about Israeli teenage drinking other than Israelis?

No wonder Israel can’t sort out a fair peace deal for the oppressed Palestinian people they are too busy trying to sort out the drinking problem. The wall is there to hide their shame about the drinking rather than cause problems for the Palestinian people.


18 Nov 2009, 11:59AM

a quite pointless article for the majority of Guardian readers, butg for what its worth, I was in Tel Aviv two weeks ago for a wedding and spent a few night out and about in the evening. I can categorgly state that Tel Aviv is nothing like London. At no point did i feel threatened, have to avert my gaze in the direction of a group of teenagers for fear of being stabbed, slashed, botteled, beaten up or mugged. Which is often the case in London. The drinking culture in Israel and i could point out Jews in general is not really an issue, as its well know we cant handle our booze. Yes you’ll always get kids drinking under-age but thats growing up for you.


18 Nov 2009, 12:25PM

I think this article is totally pointless except in trying to equate Israel as a ‘western/European democracy’. Well it is neither in Europe nor does it display European values in things like the free movement of goods and services and human rights for minorities etc.


18 Nov 2009, 12:26PM

Seth I think (As others have written) that 90% of the CIF population are more concerned about binge drinking in the Uk than in Israel.


18 Nov 2009, 2:02PM

bloody hell how much negativity does this site have to post about Israel
some suggestions for new articles:
Israeli busses run late
Israeli weather is a bit too hot in August
Israeli man heard swearing in public
dog fouling a problem in Tel Aviv
football in Israel is crap

etc etc etc

this is all getting a bit boring


18 Nov 2009, 2:43PM

World news is important. But this, and a quite a few of Seth’s recent articles are getting pretty much like blogging for blogging’s sake. What has this told me that is important? Where is the investigation here? where is the journalism?
This is nothing but a – not particularly informed – opinion piece on an issue that isn’t very important or interesting. The same thing with the last one he wrote on Erdogan – what on earth are we supposed to learn from these blogs that we couldn’t find out in 10 minutes on Wikipeadia?
I can remember from his other articles he is a reasonably good writer and it is very interesting to learn about Israeli life, Jewish culture and the war with Palestinians. but what a lot of disappointments recently. I hope the standards improve soon.


18 Nov 2009, 2:47PM

Obviously a slow news day, unless there are ulterior motives for this article.


18 Nov 2009, 2:52PM

Elephants like to get drunk on rotten plums – what of lion grass and catnip ?


18 Nov 2009, 9:53PM

Two questions for Mr. Freedman. (1) Why is teen drinking in Israel more worthy of attention in the Guardian than teen drinking in other countries, like, say, Britain? And (2) is there any subject, issue, topic, or field of human endeavor that you might ever be interested in writing about that does not involve saying bad things about Israel or Jews? Bonus question: have you ever entertained the possibility that you might benefit from a few sessions of analysis?

Poor Sethele.



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