ANTI-ZIONIST AND ANTISEMITIC DISCOURSE ON THE GUARDIAN’S COMMENT IS FREE WEBSITE

This comprehensive analysis of The Guardian’s Comment is Free website was written by Hadar Sela at the MERIA Journal, published by The Gloria Center (Global Research in International Affairs)

The British newspaper, the Guardian, has been described as waging a high-priority campaign against Israel in its pages and on its popular website. Does the evidence available–especially regarding the latter–support this opinion, and if so, in what way does this bias express itself, how far-reaching are its effects and consequences, and what–if anything–can be done to counteract it?

The Guardian is Britain’s third most read newspaper after the Daily Telegraph and the Times. As is the case with many newspapers, the sales of its print edition are declining: In January 2009, its daily circulation was 358,844 (a drop of 5.17 percent from January 2008) and by March 2010, its daily circulation had fallen further to 283,063.  However, this trend has been offset by the Guardian’s decision to expand the publication of all its material, together with that of its sibling paper, the Observer, online without charge. In January 2010, the Guardian’s website was the most popular of all UK newspaper sites, with some 37 million unique users per month, 12.6 million of whom were British. In 2008, it was runner-up in the “Webby Awards” for the best political blog, and in 2009, the guardian.co.uk site won the “best newspaper” category in those same awards.

Describing itself as “the world’s leading Liberal voice,” the Guardian takes a left-of-center stance. A poll by MORI in April to June 2000 showed that 80 percent of the Guardian’s readers were Labour voters. A 2005 poll by the same organization indicated that 48 percent of Guardian readers voted Labour and 34 percent voted Liberal Democrat. In the same year, Sir Max Hastings was quoted as saying “I write for the Guardian because it is read by the new establishment.” In the 2010 UK elections, the Guardian backed the Liberal Democrat party, which for the first time in its history gained a foothold in British government.

See the full essay here.

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