The Guardian is arguably the largest English-language mainstream media purveyor of disinformation about Israel in the world. The quantity of distortions, errors and demonising rhetoric about Israel – and, by extension, Jews qua Jews – at the outlet is at times hard to keep up with.
Since the time we can spend addressing inaccuracies in the British media is of course limited, we often engage in the media monitoring equivalent of triage – assessing each article or op-ed to determine which ones are most deserving of attention and, when appropriate, warrant complaints pursuant with the accuracy clause of the Editors’ Code.
We sent one such complaint about an article by the outlet’s Jerusalem correspondent Bethan McKernan (“Gaza: Israeli targeted killing operations prompt petition for inquiry”, July 17), which included the following claim, which we knew to be false:
After the ceasefire, Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, described [Jenin operation] as “perfect” due to the low Israeli death toll.
“Well done,” Netanyahu said. “The execution was, indeed, perfect. In a total surprise and continuing initiative we took out the entire top echelon of Islamic Jihad in Gaza. We destroyed 17 Jihad command centers, killed dozens of terrorists, struck rocket and missiles stores, stopped anti-tank cells and more.”
Though the Guardian is not typically responsive to communications concerning erroneous claims, they did uphold this one, and changed the sentence in question accordingly:
After the ceasefire, Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, described Shield and Arrow as “perfect”, citing what it achieved militarily.
An addendum was also added at the bottom of the article:
To be clear: the article is still a mess, and advances the absurd narrative that IDF attacks targeting leaders of proscribed antisemitic terrorist groups are somehow morally problematic. However, though we can’t convince them to stop spreading lies about Israel all the time, we’ll continue to push back and challenge them on demonstrably inaccurate claims when we can.