The Guardian: changing history.

There are now two Guardian obituaries of former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir online. The latest one is by Lawrence Yoffe and was published on July 1st at 17:43. The first to appear was written by Cass Jones and was published on June 30th at 21:00.  Jones’s article was, however, changed some 21 hours later and the updated version carries the following note: 

“This article was amended on Sunday 1 July. The original version suggested Shamir moved to Palestine after the Holocaust. This has been corrected.”

In fact, the original version of the article included the following sentence: 

“Born in Poland in 1915, Shamir moved to Palestine in 1935 after his mother and sisters were killed in the Holocaust.”

In other words, neither the author of the article nor the editor who reviewed it before publication noticed that Jones had essentially either put the end of the Second World War ten years prior to its actual date, or alternatively – depending upon one’s understanding – suggested that the Holocaust took place before the war. Contrary to the statement in the footnote, it did not suggest that Shamir had left Europe after the Holocaust because the year of emigration was correct. 

However, the Guardian is not alone. Interestingly, the Daily Telegraph  – in an obituary published just over an hour before the original Guardian one – made exactly the same mistake: 

“Born in Poland on October 15, 1915, Shamir emigrated to British-ruled Palestine in 1935 after his family perished in the Nazi Holocaust”.

Interpret as you will…

73 replies »

  1. Probably that extremely sloppy piece of reporting initially appeared on the wires, and was similarly sloppily relayed.

    But to headline that the Guardian is “changing history” is just laughable. Get a grip. Really.

    • hi everyone. who do you think said this?

      ‘First and foremost, terror is for us a part of the political war appropriate for the circumstances of today, and its task is a major one: it demonstrates in the clearest language, heard throughout the world including by our unfortunate brethren outside the gates of this country, our war against the occupier.’

    • Did the mention that Shamir was a leader of terrorist group Stern, responsible for several terrorist actions against European civilians in the 40s?

        • Both Lehi and Irgun bombed civilian targets, such as the Jerusalem train station and the King David hotel, and massacred civilians in Palestinian villages such as Deir Yassin. They also carried out assassinations against civilians such as diplomat Bernadotte. They also assassinated young British soldiers, including two 18-year-ol who were tortured before being executed.

          In the West , people who’ve been members of terrorist groups do not become prime ministers.

      • They did a rather nice job of whitewashing out the terror bits. Like CiF Witch (hunt), I’m outraged by the obits. They made him out to be statesman, not the criminal murderer he actually was.

        • You’re right; this obituary of Arafat is abominable(by your benchmark). The man responsible for the death of countless Israelis is called a “great survivor”, with the text itself spewing vile hatred against Israel. I am outraged, as I am sure you are. ;-).
          Arafat’s dithyramb

            • Just compare the two eulogies:
              Arafat is lauded, without question(even chided for the “compromises” he offered); Shamir’s past is highlighted in a very conciliatory tone, but it lacks the very adulatory and fawning refrain used in Arafat’s tribute.
              All in all, on a skewed Guardian scale, they oddly match. Shamir is treated very curtly, but his ENTIRE career is presented, for better or for worse; which somewhat compensates the paean awarded to a true, and ruthless terrorist – Arafat.

        • Sanity: I’m outraged by the obits. They made him out to be statesman, not the criminal murderer he actually was.

          Well, go to stormfront or palestine telegraph where you’ll get an obitury more in tune with your worldview.

          And you moan about this here because:

          a) Your double standards mean you can’t find a criminal murder who is not a Zionist / Jew
          b) You are feeling particurly sanctimonious today and have nowhere else to go?

          • There are plenty of criminal murderers who are not Jews. In fact, the majority are not Jews. What has that to do with anything? No, the fact is that the Guardian, a mainstream widely-read newspaper, did a whitewash job on the obit of this criminal terrorist. Why can’t you accept that? Why insinuate that I’m an antisemite because a man who avowedly swore that terrorism was in his ethnic group’s national interest has died and been euologised? YOu are not making sense.

            • Sanity: “There are plenty of criminal murderers who are not Jews. In fact, the majority are not Jews.”

              Ah yes, you mean the ones under Zionist control.

              What do you want me to accept? A morally inverted version of reality? A shallow narrative on world history that replaces meaningful context with fashionable cliches to bolster your own sense of self-worth?

              I can’t learn anything from a psuedo intellectual like you. I do not engage you with political debate or exchange of ideas. You are far too shallow and dogmatic, as your one dimensional, banal critique of Yitzhak Shamir shows us.

              • So you have absolutely nothing to say about Shamir’s statement, ‘terror is for us a part of the political war appropriate for the circumstances of today, and its task is a major one: it demonstrates in the clearest language, heard throughout the world including by our unfortunate brethren outside the gates of this country, our war against the occupier’?

                Nothing to say about this? Nothing to say on the parallels to today? Nothing to say about the lack of moral equivalence? Nothing to say at all about anything of substance? Why are you here, then? You might as well be masturbating (though perhaps that’s what you do as you write, who knows?)

                • Sanity: “Nothing to say about this?”

                  To you, definately not. I have already told you that I don’t engage you on any kind of political level.

                  Sanity: “You might as well be masturbating.”

                  You wish. But of course, I don’t come to this site to listen to your banal fashion statements masquerading as political debate, and if that’s all their was, I wouldn’t be here at all. Whether that time would spent wanking, I leave to your puerile imagination.

                  • and whom would you deem worthy of your intellectual gems? or perhaps you are just hiding from the fact that the question is too hard. perhaps you support terrorism when it’s in a ‘good’ cause. religioethnonationalism justifie all. perhaps you are just a racist goon after all?!!! i should listen to my gut more often!!!

                    • Congratulations to Adam Levick and all associated with this site. CifWatch has now (in the space of a few days) evolved from a “religious fundamentalist” site to a supporter of “religionationalist terrorism” to “religioethnonationalism”.

                      Never in the field of blogging have so many buzzwords that have so little relation to reality been abused in such a short time.

                      Surely the next step is religio-ethno-colonio-fascisto-sususudio-pinnochio-nationalism?

                    • so nothing to say about the substantive issue here, then? just stonewalling to avoid the real questions. who’d have thunk?

                    • No – I have no comment on this particular story. If I had, I would have made it. Instead, I choose to call you out when you deliberately distort the truth, make false allegations etc.

                      Guess what – you don’t get to tell me what I should say and when I should say it.

    • CIF Watch: changing History.

      Shamir was a member of terrorist groups Irgun and Lehi (also known as the Stern Gang), who carried out terrorist actions in the 40s. Why try to hide it?

  2. And these guys, who cant even get their facts straight, presume to be moral arbiters in a conflict they can’t even understand in anything but the most simplistic black and white terms.

  3. Sloppy error. I do wonder if they were cribbing from his Wikipedia article, which reads: “In 1935, he settled in Palestine. His parents and two sisters were murdered in the Holocaust.”

  4. pretzel and sencar, your feeble attempts to excuse the Guardian put me in mind of the dog eating one’s homework.

    • Try reading the report, mate. It was just a mistake.
      Although: most BTL posters here – like Drew Lewis – seem rather deficient on the intellectual front.

      • pretzel, since you have directed a personal insult at me, let me comment that on present evidence you would not recognize anything even remotely intellectual if it rammed you up the arse.

          • Don’t you just love ‘Sanity”s typical troll gambit of trying to nudge the argument to an entirely irrelevant topic?

            • What I love is how not only are some of the commenters on this site religionationalist fundamentalists, they are also gay haters. Who would have thunk?

          • Sanity you have just successfully added a brand new dimension to the word “pervert”. Congratulations!

              • No Snity it is not but thinking first about homosexuality reading the word “arse” as you demonstrably did is a serious perversion.

                • It wasn’t the word ‘arse,’ it was what was done with it. But don’t worry about homophobia, so long as it’s in the cause of the defence against antisemitism, it’s all ok!!! Let’s bitch about the Muslims while we’re at it!!! And the Sudanese migrants, too!!!

          • Sanity: “Nice bit of homophobia there. Always enjoy the good,wholesome company on this site!!!”

            But absolutely nothing to say about Iran’s official policy of persecution of homosexuals or its embrace of Nazi-style eliminationist anti-Semitism.

            These comments of yours only reveal what a morally retarded self-important cliche you really are.

            • Iran’t official policy of persecution of homosexuals and its tolerance towards antisemitism are both horrific. What has that to do with anything, though? This is a post about euologies to criminal religious fundamentalist terrorists.

          • Oh dear Sanity. Do we really have to go into a linguistic metanalysis of the phrase “you wouldn’t know… if it rammed you up the arse”?

            I think the point is that most people, whatever their gender or sexuality, would DEFINITELY notice something if it was inserted violently into their anus. It just isn’t possible to miss. The meaning of the phrase is, therefore, that you (the target of the insult) is so cut off from reality that you would pretend that the facts were different even if those said facts were made obvious to you in the clearest possible way.

            Clearly, in your case, the insult was appropriate, as you have mis-interpreted this common (though admittedly inelegant) turn of phrase as some sort of homophobic comment.

            I don’t suppose you’d prefer to be told that you are the sort of person who will argue that black is white, as that, no doubt, in your tiny mind, will be construed as a racist comment.

            • I would have thought that sensitivity to the perceptions caused by linguistic use, ie, if someone makes comments that could be interpreted as racist, homophobic, etc., would be high up the agendas of the commenters here. Especially given that this ite is meant to be countering race hate. Meant to, of course.

              Might it be the case that actually some commenters here are so aroused by the notions here described, that they don’t really notice where their members are being rammed, or more precisely, don’t care?

              • “Meant to, of course.”

                You will see that CifWatch aims to “monitor and combat antisemitism…” I think it does this very well.

                While Adam L has many times stated that he has no truck with racism of any colour (if you’ll excuse the dreadful choice of words) this site’s raison d’etre is not to be a generic campaign against racism, but against one form of it in particular – namely, antisemitism.

                Got a problem with that?

                “some commenters here are so aroused…that they don’t really notice when their members are being rammed”

                And you accuse Drew Lewis of homophobia?

                • I have nothing against fighting antisemitism. I wage the fight myself. My problem is religioethnonationalism and the terror that Shamir thought was justified by it, as per the quote I put at the beginning, to which no one has responded. Wonder why??!!!

                  • I have nothing against fighting antisemitism. I wage the fight myself.

                    Are you going to commit suicide?

                  • Changing the subject again, Sanity? First you do so by flinging wild accusations of homophobia, then when called to account for that, you pretend the discussion was all about antisemitism.

              • Sanity: “I would have thought that sensitivity to the perceptions caused by linguistic use..blah blah blah”

                But you call Shamir a ‘religious fundamentalist’ instead of a Jewish nationalist. Do you not recognise this ‘linguistic’ difference or is it another transparent attempt at moral equivalence?

                • Osama bin Laden wanted a Muslim caliphate, ie, he was a Muslim nationalist. Or at least, that would be your take, presumably.

                  I prefer to call a spade a spade.

        • Ah … another of these 16-year-olds showing their age with their juvenile insults.

          Who the f++k are you anyway?
          My e-mail alerts to CiFW have resulted into a dozen+ articles on this website.

          Feel silly? You should do. The usual chimps recommending your post likewise.

  5. These Guardian DumbFucks can’t get anything right,they are so full of hate that it blinds them.

    • Just curious: are you actually so insane as to believe the G. to be an anti-Semitic publication?
      Or are you simply spreading smears?

      Either way: I pity you.

      • pretzel paraphrasing Drew Lewis you would not recognize anything antisemitic if it rammed you up the arse

        • Peter, pretzelberg is a contrarian for the sake of it just as Groucho Marx illustrates

          • Groucho? I’m honoured!
            Although I’d prefer Harpo. I was just telling someone today how he and Salvador Dali were big buddies. You know … the surrealism and all that.
            But I digress …

        • And that’s why my own posts to CiFWatch highlighting anti-Semitism have resulted in a dozen+ articles? What has your active contribution to this website been?

          What a prize idiot you and the resident chimps are!

      • Ooh, I feel so much better for your pity pretzel, however misdirected it is. You would be better pitying the Guardian for its thoughts-as-facts excuses for “journalism” and blatant bias.

        Not that it’d make much difference of course.

  6. For the Guardian to stop making (deliberate) mistakes when it writes anything at all about Israel, first they need to get rid of this deeply entrenched anti-Israeli bias.

    • This kind of juvenile comment is what I mean re. provokation and propaganda.

      Do you hear me, Adam Levick?

  7. The fact is that ….

    When it comes to Israel the guardian believes it is entitled to its own facts, but the Guardian’s opinions are sacred.

    • The Guardian is a newspaper whose journalists fulfill their duty to write impartial reports. They’re not in charge of disseminating the propaganda of hard right wing groups supporting the settlement policy despite the fact that it contravenes international law and is disowed by many Israelis.