CiF Watch prompts correction to Robert Fisk’s gross under count of Arab Israelis

Among the myriad of errors in Robert Fisk’s April 25th report in The Independent we noted in a recent post was the following extraordinary under count of Arab Israelis:


Leaving his bizarre use of the word “deleting” aside, Fisk was so far off in is count of Arab Israelis one wonders if he was working without the use of an internet search engine while ‘fact checking’ his work.  

As we pointed out in an email to Indy editors, there are over 1.6 million Arab Israelis (not “tens of thousands“), based on statistics published by the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics.  Shortly after our correspondence, the passage was corrected.

Here’s the updated text:


Though you have to scratch your head in wonder when contemplating how an “award winning” reporter with decades of experience covering the region could get such a frequently reported element of Israeli demography so wildly wrong, we nonetheless commend Indy editors on their decision to revise Fisk’s erroneous figure.


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6 replies »

  1. Does considering Japan a “Japanese” country delete everyone who isn’t Japanese who lives there? Does this same apply to Arab countries, Muslim countries, etc? Why is this always only applied to Israel/Jewish state?

    • Japanese is not a religion. Japanese citizens have different religions. By contrast, Jew is a religion. How do you reconcile speaking of a Jewish state with the fact that one quarter of Israelis are not Jews?

  2. Arab Israelis, Christians and Muslims, make one quarter of the population in Israel today.