CiF Watch prompts revision to Economist claim about MK Zoabi’s suspension

Earlier in the month we posted about a curious omission in an Economist article titled ‘Us and Them‘, Aug. 2.  


Israeli MK Haneen Zoabi

To buttress their broader theme on the putative ‘erosion of Israel’s democracy’, the characteristically anonymous article made the following claim about Israeli MK Haneen Zoabi:

This week the Knesset banned an Arab member, Haneen Zoabi, for six months for “aggressive behaviour” in anti-war demonstrations.

However, as we noted at the time, this is an inaccurate statement as it omits key information about the suspension.

MK Zoabi was suspended for six months from the Knesset (while still maintaining her voting rights in the Israeli legislative body) for two reasons – one of which the Economist completely omitted. 

While Zoabi’s suspension was in part due to an incident with a police officer at a protest rally (as they noted), the main reason was related to her assertion, in mid June, that the kidnappers of three Israeli teens (Naftali Fraenkel, Eyal Yifrah, and Gilad Shaar) were NOT terrorists – a comment she evidently didn’t amend, even after the boys’ bullet ridden bodies were discovered partially buried near Hebron on June 30.

Shimon Peres

We complained to Economist editors, and, in addition to slightly revising the text to note that Zoabi’s behavior at the protest was only one of the reasons for her suspension, they added the following addendum.

corexThough the text still doesn’t include the main reason for Zoabi’s suspension, editors’ acknowledgement that the original language was misleading is of course welcomed. 

4 replies »

  1. You forgot that she has accompanied armed Turkish terrorists on the Navi marmara ship of the infamous Gaza Nothing was done to her at all on that occasion, despite the public outcry. So she has a history siding with terrorists. Moreover, her Knesset membership, according tot he Israeli law, is explicitly subject to her staying loyal to the country. She was not kicked out oft he Knesset for good only because the extremely (some say excessively) liberal Israeli Supreme Court was trying to balance here right of free speech with her legal duty to be loyal to the country.

  2. It seems to me that even their clarification is misleading. Participation in anti-war demonstrations is not a reason for being banned from the Knesset in Israel, and this is what they suggest happened. This is not inaccurate: this is vile, as it promotes the idea that Israel isn’t democratic.

  3. Zuebi writes:

    “As I write this she is in Qatar, probably having a chat with Chaled Mashal.”

    Who in turn is probably being taken out to lunch at a 5 star restaurant by a senior member of the Economist’s (“We’re not anti-Semitic, just anti-Zionist”) editorial staff.