According to the Guardian’s “corrections and clarifications” page al Grauniad admits
We should not have put the headline “Israel admits harvesting Palestinian organs” on a story about an admission, by the former head of the Abu Kabir forensic institute near Tel Aviv, that during the 1990s specialists at the institute harvested organs from the bodies of Israeli soldiers, Israeli citizens, Palestinians and foreign workers without getting permission from the families of the deceased (21 December, page 15). That headline did not match the article, which made clear that the organs were not taken only from Palestinians. This was a serious editing error and the headline has been changed online to reflect the text of the story written by the reporter.
Serious editing error. You don’t say.
As ModernityBlog pointed out in his excellent post on the subject earlier this week which we cross-posted here (and for which he can probaly take partial credit for the Guardian’s emabarassing admission of wrongdoing),
“the Guardian can write considered and thoughtful articles on the Alder Hey scandal, but when a similar situation arises in Israel it is used as a political stick to beat Israelis with, and any notion of thoughtful journalism is thrown out of the window.’
The fact of the matter is that the Guardian’s subsequent retraction buried in an obscure place in its website or in the back pages of its newspaper is too little, too late as the damage has already been done. The vile antisemitic commentary on the Antony Lerman thread this week only served to confirm this and I’ll wager that we’ll continue to see in the comment threads allegations of havesting of Palestinian organs along with the long list of blood libels such as the so-called “Jenin massacre” that are regularly trumpeted on “Comment is Free”.
And can we expect any change in the Guardian’s editorial policy? Not one that I can foresee and I tend to agree with CAMERA’s assessment on the subject who in their response to the Guardian’s retraction stated:
It’s unfortunately safe to expect that, with respect to the Arab-Israeli conflict, the newspaper we’ll continue to see won’t be the Guardian that corrected a distorted headline, but the Guardian that so frequently distorts the conflict, and the Guardian whose culture allows an editor to unblinkingly announce that “In Israel they murder each other a great deal” only because “they don’t like their political style and what they’ve got to say.”