UKMW prompts Guardian correction to op-ed claim Ahed Tamimi is a “peaceful” activist

A Guardian op-ed by radical anti-Israel activist, and Code Pink co-founder, Medea Benjamin (I am an American, Jewish and banned by Israel for my activism, Jan. 15) was full of misleading characterizations of the BDS movement.  But, one counter-factual claim which immediately stuck out, and prompted us to contact Guardian editors, appears in the following paragraph:

Though Benjamin’s characterisation of Issa Armo as a “peaceful” human rights activist is (at best) extraordinarily misleading (see this piece by Petra Marquardt-Bigman for background), the claim that Pallywood star Ahed Tamimi (aka “Shirley Temper”) was arrested for her “peaceful” activism is just a lie.

As we pointed out to editors, the Guardian’s own coverage reported on the video of the Palestinian teen striking an Israeli soldier – an assault which led to her arrest.  Further, the suggestion that Tamimi promotes anything resembling “peace” was contradicted in her ‘message to the world‘ video, also covered by the Guardian, which justified Palestinian stabbings and suicide bombings.

Editors quickly upheld our complaint, removed the word “peaceful” from the sentence and added the following addendum.

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8 replies »

  1. The Guardian uses the term ‘activist’ to cover everybody from peace camp protesters to terrorist murderers.

  2. I have just read the article and wondered why it wasn’t thrown straight into the bin.
    Take the second and fourth paragraphs as an example of why I wondered that.

    2nd para.
    “As a Jew, this causes me tremendous sadness because I have a lifetime attachment to Israel and Palestine. It also deepens my commitment to working for peace and equality for all the peoples of the region.”
    Do let us know what you have done in your work for peace and equality for other peoples in the region, for example in Syria or Lebanon or Jordan?

    4th para.
    “I made friends with Arabs who taught me how the Jewish state had dispossessed Palestinians from their lands during Israel’s establishment, created millions of refugees who were not allowed to return, and denied basic rights to the Palestinians who remained as second-class citizens”
    Arabs taught you that? No shit Sherlock. Did you ever query those claims with people in Israel, or any other source or have you just accepted them?
    “MILLIONS of refugees who were not allowed to return” that is amplification on a gross scale as well as being a colourful interpretation of the truth and reality.

    File under ‘Consignment of Geriatric Shoemakers.’

    • Million??? The generally accepted number is about 800,000. About the same number as Jews kicked out of Muslim lands following 1948. Second class citizens??? There are many Muslim doctors, politicians, etc. and Israeli-Musliml beauty contest winners in Israel. In most Muslim countries, it’s illegal to marry a Jew (Or anyone from another religion, gays and criticizing Allah can be given capital punishment, woman are truly second class citizens, and western music is not allowed. You want the definition of a second class citizen, try locating the few Jews left in Muslim countries (Who have to hide their faith.)

    • “I have just read the article and wondered why it wasn’t thrown straight into the bin.”

      Because she’s a Jew. If she were an Arab sympathizing with Israel, it would have gone right into the bin, gasoline would have been poured on it, and a lighted match thrown in.

  3. Medea Benjamin is a virulently anti-Israel activist who rejects Israel’s right to exist in any way, shape or form. Israel is 100% justified in banning her from the country.

    She’s a danger to security. Any rational country would do the same.