UK Media Watch prompts two corrections at The Independent

A July 3rd article in The Independent, written by Sam Masters, mischaracterized the conclusions of a UNHRC report on the Gaza war.

Here’s the relevant sentence:

A recent UN report into last year’s Gaza war found that Israel had committed war crimes.

However, if you read the text, the UNHRC report clearly only concluded that Israel (and Hamas) may have committed war crimes. 

Of interest, further in the same article, Masters uses more accurate language (“may have”) when citing UNHRC conclusions regarding Hamas’s firing of rockets at Israel.  

Interestingly, The Independent’s Jerusalem correspondent, Ben Lynfield, in a June 22nd report on the UNHRC conclusions, made this point clear.

A long-awaited UN report on last summer’s Gaza war was scathing in its criticism of Israel’s devastating aerial and ground operations, saying it may have committed war crimes

After contacting Indy editors, they revised the passage accordingly.

Additionally, we complained to editors about a claim in a July 6th article at The Independent, written by Ben Lynfield, which falsely asserted that the 50 day summer conflict with Hamas was Israel’s 2nd longest war.  We noted that the longest Israeli wars were the First Lebanon War, which lasted nearly 3 years, and The War of Attrition which also lasted about 3 years. The third longest war would be the 1948-49 War of Independence, and the fourth longest one would be last summer’s conflict.

Indy editors removed the problematic passage, and added the following addendum at the bottom:

indy change

We commend Indy editors on their positive response to our complaints.

3 replies »

  1. This “correction” is still pretty mealy-mouthed. For example, “after what the Israelis call the 1947-49 War of Independence”. Firstly, I’m not sure that most Israelis ever use the dates, just referring to it as “the War of Independence”. Second, their terminology suggests that only Israelis refer to it that way. What else is the author suggesting it should be called? No, this apology for a correction really isn’t good enough from what some people claim to be “a newspaper”.

  2. These days I avoid the Guardian because I find it saturated with this willful mis-reporting. The ‘errors’ are always in the same direction. Any journalist who thinks he is entitled to mislead because he feels an ideological justification to do so is corrupt.

  3. After reading their bungling bullshit artists make up excuses as to why Israel should disappear in the face of overtly extremist Islamic-based aggression, I’ve concluded that the Journos who write for them may indeed be Nazis born again unto this world.

    Hey, it’s only criticism.