While we’re quite accustomed to Guardian reporters and commentators completely re-writing Israeli history, an editorial on the results of the Israeli election re-writes their own history by ignoring their entire body of work on the subject prior to the Jan. 22 vote.
The official Guardian editorial, ‘Israel: the new normal‘, is, to be sure, characteristically imperious and hubristic towards the “truculent” Jewish state, but also concedes – based on the likelihood that Netanyahu will be forming a centrist coalition – that “the Israeli voter rejected “the far right”.
However, the editorial also briefly touches on those political observers who didn’t for a second believe that the Israeli center would hold:
“In the end, the crown prince of Israeli politics was not the dotcom millionaire who would annex 60% of the West Bank. He was neither of the far nor the national religious right, as many had confidently predicted.”
So, who precisely were these arrogant prognosticators who got it so terribly wrong?
Here’s a graphic look back at the headlines and passages published by the media group which they may be referring to.
‘Comment is Free contributor, Rachel Shabi
Guardian’s Middle East Editor, Ian Black
Guardian’s Jerusalem correspondent, Harriet Sherwood
Ian Black is Gloomy and Inaccurate
Observer’s foreign affairs editor, Peter Beaumont
Again, Harriet Sherwood
Harriet Sherwood cites a piece by the New Yorker’s David Remnick, to confirm Israel’s rightward shfit
Guardian journalist, Jonathan Freedland
Jonathan Freedland asks why the Israeli move right – which didn’t in fact happen – was happening.
Freedland also cites wisdom of ‘New Yorker’ contributor on Israel’s “endless” move right
Once again, Harriet Sherwood
Guardian’s Middle East ‘Live’ Blog post edited by John Henley
Guardian publishes two letters from readers affirming Guardian analysis of Israel’s move to the right
As Adam Garfinkle recently observed, in a thoughtful piece about coverage of the Algerian hostage crisis, much of the media often sees what they expect to see, and thus ignores all evidence that “does not fit with [their] framing of the situation”.
Whilst I’ve been following the Guardian far too long to be so foolish as to expect anything resembling a mea culpa from their editors in response to such an egregious misreading of the Israeli electorate, it would truly be a gift to their readers if they were to even briefly acknowledge the limits of their capacity to interpret Israeli political phenomena unfiltered by their preconceived, ideologically inspired, conclusions.