Dvir Abramovich in The Age: No Laughing!

Although Dvir Abramovich’s opinion column in today’s Sunday Age grossly misstates facts and makes various bizarre assertions, I would still like to thank him for the free publicity he has so generously given this blog, through his opinion piece.

Nevertheless, it is only right that the misconceptions he bandied about so freely are corrected.

If one were tempted to play the man and not the ball, one might suggest that Abramovich’s piece was nothing more than a wounded response to this blog’s criticism of his recent pronouncements on what can and can’t be said about the Holocaust.

Giving him give him the benefit of the doubt, however, we should simply correct his various logical fallacies and factual errors in good faith.

He writes: “ANYONE with a passing knowledge of the Victorian Jewish community would be aware that there is no shortage of outlets for debate.

The Sensible Jew is not about whether public forums for debate exist in the community. When it was started, this forum clearly stated its intention: to be the first on-line, open forum for debate on matters pertaining to Australian Jews. That his first sentence is factually incorrect is an indication of what is to come.

By a crude estimation, there are annually more than 2000 events that are open, cater to every segment of the populace and explore every dimension of Jewish life.

Once again, this blog has never claimed a lack of community functions.

Alex Fein’s evidence-light prosecutorial indictment of the entire Jewish community is riddled with grandiloquent contentions, distortions and omissions that fly in the face of objective reality.

This statement so misuderstands the content of the blog that I am forced to wonder a) if he was reading my blog or b) has genuine difficulty in processing written argument. I have never once castigated, “the entire Jewish community.”

Abramovich’s attempt to portray me as some sort of Loewenstinian, is not only completely false, but it performs every sin he mentions above, from distortion, to “flying in the face of objective reality.”

In a magnanimous moment, we might say that the above statement was merely the product of Abramovich not doing his research again. A less generous interpretation would be that his desire for printed retribution is stronger than his desire accuracy.

Jews are pluralistic in their beliefs and the young are unafraid to vigorously air their opinions. Last week, a Jewish leader in his 20s was appointed a regular columnist in The Australian Jewish News.”

What possible relevance does this statement have to anything written on the blog?

“The majority of executive members in the Jewish Community Council of Victoria are in their 30s and there are many women serving as presidents of communal bodies and in other key roles.

Really? I urge readers to go to the JCCV website and try to find who these executives actually are. When I checked, the only names given on the website belong to John Searle, Braham Goldberg, Morry Kalkopf, Geoffry Zygier, and Hilary McMahon – none of whom, as far as I know, are in their 30s. Hillary McMahon, the JCCV business manager, may indeed be a woman, but she is not someone any Jew outside the JCCV would recognise.

Whether it is in youth movements, synagogues, sporting associations, educational programs, young leadership forums, blogs, newsletters, conferences, workshops, informal gatherings or social clubs, the mosaic of voices is on display. In 2006, a public debate concerning the Gaza disengagement was staged and this month an Israeli Jew, an Israeli Arab and a Christian Palestinian spoke at various functions.

Once more, Abramovich demonstrates he may not have read very much of this blog. I have never written about a dearth of institutions or events.

No one is denied access to espouse alternative views. The Jewish community consists of a rainbow of opinions. In 2007, Jews including members of Parliament, judges and Jewish unionists declared: ”We endorse free speech and diversity within the Jewish community … Australian Jewry is a ‘broad church’ and most communal roof bodies include a wide range of opinions.”

Perhaps Dr Abramovich actually has me confused with Antony Loewenstein. Nowhere have I suggested that Jews are “denied access to espouse alternative views.” His poverty of fact-checking is quite problematic: a cursory read of this blog clearly illustrates my concerns: representation, transparency, and poor public relations.

As for his unfortunate choice of the phrase, “rainbow of opinions,” Dr Abramovich may or may not be aware of the treatment the Jewish gay support group received from the JCCV. The community itself is most certainly a “rainbow;” the JCCV is not.

Fein trots out a commentator named Captain Pugwash (religion/gender unknown) to prove that their abusive postings are somehow symptomatic of the community. This is the ultimate guilt by speculation. The vague charge that because of several nameless visitors, ”intolerance of debate” was somehow ”typical of something quite disturbing” within the Jewish community tarnishes a whole group.

Dr Abramovich may not be familiar with the way blogs operate. Visitors almost always use pseudonyms. Indeed, I have kept careful track of IP addresses and the nature of the language used in trolling posts. This verified that one troll overwhelmingly dominated abusive comments. I felt it was important to point that out during my Age interview so that the wider community would not be tarnished.

It is also evident that Dr Abramovich must have come quite late to the blog.

Our regular posters, who have seen the trolling posts before I deleted them, will know that the troll a) has knowledge of the most scurrilous gossip about various Jewish individuals, circulating in the community, b) is profoundly misogynistic, as well as alarmingly racist and homophobic.

Abramovich doubts the male, Jewishness of troll. And it is, of course, possible that a Gentile woman has not only thrown me off the scent with her rabid comments about women, but has infiltrated the community to the extent that she knows so many of our people and the vile rumours that have been circulated about them.

Another logic-defying conjecture is that readers of the blog, ”felt that if their opinions were made public, they would be publicly shamed, ridiculed, or defamed.” By whom? Fein evokes the bogyman of the aggressive and conservative community leaders. Is she suggesting that there’s a circle of Jewish leaders who meet to review statements they don’t like and then plan a strategic campaign of vilification? The implication is worrying.

I apologise for the repetition, but once again, it is clear that Dr Abramovich has not bothered with basic research. Never once have I suggested that anyone was threatened by the wrath of our leaders.

My issues with leadership are entirely separate from the post Abramovich believes he is quoting.

If he has never heard anyone in the community express reluctance to get into public political slanging matches, I would recommend he speak to more Jews. If he is not bothered to do that, he is welcome to read the comments on my blog, in which such sentiments have been regularly expressed.

Fein carelessly wonders if a bullying mentality is entrenched in the Jewish community. She feels the need to observe that the community is not a violent one and yet says she was shocked ”that there was enough fear to keep a significant number quiet”. Such overblown rhetoric is unfair.

How exactly, does one, “carelessly wonder?”

And how is it careless to respond to the multitude of comments, emails, and private conversations that have raised this topic? Is it careless to ponder the possibilities of bullying at all?

Following Fein’s half-baked logic, the Jewish community leadership is trapped – it can’t protest anything since this will lead to charges of it being ”heavy-handed”. In a patronising tone, the blog preaches that what the community needs is a ”likeable Jewish face”. Maybe we should stage an Australian Idol-type competition to find a likeable Jewish face? “‘

In a patronising tone? Australian Idol for a new Jewish face? Let us not get bogged down in delightful ironies, but instead consider why Abramovich has such a problem with improving communal PR.

Again, he completely misunderstands the blog’s central tenet. I never once advised that we should abstain from acting in our own best interests. I simply questioned whether our leadership was doing the community justice in this regard. That such a question can elicit such vitriol indicates a basic intolerance for any sort of open discssion about what is in Australian Jewry’s best interests.

Bloggers, who control what appears, are unelected, non-transparent and non-representative. Fein depicts herself as a freedom-fighter for what she defines as moderate, inclusive opinion. She’s a David taking on a Goliath, struggling against the mighty communal machinery. Any reasonable test would show that such theories are fiction.

This is arrant nonsence. I have never posited myself as any sort of David, battling any type of Goliath.

Abramovich’s complaint about the manner in which I have not been elected demonstrates a worrying confusion. Bloggers are not communal representatives. We are not politicians. We are commentators.

In the June interview, the Sensible Jew said that the community’s response to perceived anti-Semitism and criticism of Israel exacerbates ”anti-Jewish” prejudice. In a June 28 entry, Fein notes that ”certain types of anti-Semitism are self-generating and self-perpetuating”. No, the only ones responsible for anti-Semitism are anti-Semites.

Dr Abramovich regularly makes statements that attempt to close down debate.

There are many in the community, however, who prefer to examine how we, as Jews, might not always be cast in the role of victim, but might actually have agency in how others perceive us.

Fein wants to be represented but does not want to participate. Instead of shouting from the margins, she should engage with the institutions of the Jewish community. She’ll find that though some may disagree with her, in the spirit of Jewish tradition, she would be no less welcome for that. And she can sleep easy – no one will call on the Jewish elders to visit any retribution on her.

On average, I write a thousand words a day, not including responses to comments. Most would consider this participation. I am a commentator. I am not a politician. How many journalists, authors, or other bloggers does Dr Abravovich admonish to abandon their pursuits to take up politics?

I appreciate Abramovich’s proposition of a welcoming reception in corridors of power, but I’m not sure he’s really in a postion to make that offer.

I remind my readers: try looking for meeting times, names of participants, or any other concrete information about our roof bodies. Try talking to anyone with any experience of dealing with them about how inclusive they are. Remember that their “elections” make a mockery of democracy.

As for Abramovich’s implication that I fear the retribution of our leaders, I have never made any such claim and here we have our final indication that he has not actually read the blog he castigates.

***

The post on the relationship between our leaders, the media, and broader Australian perceptions is being held over until tomorrow.

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  3. Winning Friends and Influencing People 3: Anti-Semitism, The Hiatus, and Secret GLBT Business.
  4. SJ Signs off – temporarily
  5. Reader Response 7: Responding to our Non/Anti-Zionist Readers

41 Responses to “Dvir Abramovich in The Age: No Laughing!”

  1. michael says:

    Good Response Dvir, it obviously hit a nerve..

    At least we have one ‘Jewish Academic” in this country with Balls!

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  2. Almoni says:

    I was infuriated by Dvir’s 1/2 baked response, particularly his remarks about a certain troll.

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  3. Albert says:

    Stop spamming the comments. Reply to a post or to another comment only. Further infractions will result in banning.

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  4. Mensch says:

    identified by spam filter as troll

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  5. Daniel says:

    The Sensible Jew is not about whether public forums for debate exist in the community. When it was started, this forum clearly stated its intention: to be the first on-line, open forum for debate on matters pertaining to Australian Jews.

    There were plenty of on-line, open fora before yours. I might add, that unlike yours, they don’t need to routinely censor comments because someone’s precious feelings might get hurt. They are rough and tumble without the pretense and ego.

    Really? I urge readers to go to the JCCV website and try to find who these executives actually are

    You have nicely demonstrated how little you know about an organisation you so frequently deride. The JCCV is an umbrella organisation made up of elected representatives of smaller organisations, each one of which has its own leadership, details of which are also readily available. It has been this way for decades and your lack of knowledge is embarrassing. Even more so for someone who will accuse Abrahamovich of not bothering with “basic resarch”.

    It is no different to major political parties having branch offices and constituents. I’m sure you could name your local MP, but could you name the local Party President? If not, is that proof the whole system is opaque and/or a failure? Or proof you just haven’t got a clue.

    Perhaps Dr Abramovich actually has me confused with Antony Loewenstein.

    I can see why. Although I’m sure you care about Israel more than Loewenstein does, it might shock you to realise how much you do have in common with him.

    1) You are a shameless attention seeker, even if the publicity you achieve hurts others. The Age is the most disgracefully anti-Israel and often anti-Semitic mainstream newspaper in the country. Yet you actively seek publicity in it and are either too obtuse to realise their agenda, or too selfish to care.

    It must be something about writers…

    2) You visibly believe your opinion is much more valid than the majority.

    3) You spurn communal democratic processes, and voluntarily sit on the sidelines instead, complaining that you aren’t involved and running the show.

    Note, I would have said “publicity whore” but I fear you would have censored my post for being a big meany.

    As for Abramovich’s implication that I fear the retribution of our leaders, I have never made any such claim and here we have our final indication that he has not actually read the blog he castigates.

    Remind us again why you cowered behind a pseudonym when you first started. Exactly what were you afraid of?

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  6. David Zyngier says:

    Michael I am Jewish. I am an Academic. I am male. I am more or less complete in the downstairs department! Why don’t I rate in your attribution of having Balls then? Could a female Jewish Academic like Professor Fania Oz-Salzberger, School of Historical Studies Staff – the Leon Liberman Chair of Modern Israel Studies at Monash have Balls or do you have to be a conservative male only who agrees with Michael?

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  7. Albert says:

    Danial to claim as you do that the “. The Age is the most disgracefully anti-Israel and often anti-Semitic mainstream newspaper in the country. ” is as infantile as it is ridiculous. The Age is well known to be pro Israeli, it rarely prints articals that are critical of Israel.And as for the Australian , its editors know exactly where they are expected to stand. To read indepth articals that are truthfull and critical of the Israeli/Palestine issue one need to go to Israeli papers such as Haaretz.See this for example -

    Tutu to Haaretz: Arabs paying the price of the Holocaust

    By Akiva Eldar, Haaretz Correspondent
    http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1110762.html

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  8. Phill O'Semetic says:

    The professor doth protesteth too much methinks?
    A paternalistic & patronising tone leaches from the lines of his largely, evidence-absent counter assertions. The majority of paragraphs end with condescending generalist appeals such as, “any reasonable test”, “is unfair”, “implication is worrying”.
    This piece appears to amplify the very objections levelled against S.J in so far as failing to provide any significant evidence in support of it’s allegations.
    Imploring rhetoric however, overall; somewhat dissapointing for a distinguished academic. The student displays more rigour than the master. Can do better. B-

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  9. Bear in mind that there are several target markets for the “meta-discussion” about SJ that occurs in the press. The vast majority of people will only know about these matters from what they see in mainstream media, and won’t want/care to descend into the blogosphere.

    For them, SJ makes her position about what she thinks about the Jewish community (is another blog really a story?), and Dvir makes a reasonable counter-position, and it ends there (maybe).

    For them, I reckon Dvir has achieved his desired objective – to put forward publicly a different and credible view about the Jewish community.

    Then there are the people who are already following the blog, or will start following it because of all the publicity, perhaps because of this exciting new debate.

    They can form a view on the respective positions based on what they read in the blog itself (if they have a few spare hours). Bear in mind that once we get down to the trenches, we see that this is an asymmetric battle. Dvir will likely not shift his debate to the blog itself, and may not even seek to influence the views of this group of people. SJ has full editorial control to respond as she wishes and moderate further debate. So here, Dvir’s view probably doesn’t count for much anyway.

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  10. almoni says:

    David, I beg to differ, Dvir Abromovitch’s op-ed is incredibly sloppy and would not pass credible academic muster. I regularly tear my colleague’s papers to shreds in the interests of rigour so it is not just a matter of friend or enemies but the strength of an argument. It also reflects on the sloppiness of the Sunday Age.

    BTW Sensible Jew, I think you have been a bit to heavy with your right of veto of opinions today, which undermines your arguments about alternate opinions etc.

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  11. Almoni,

    You miss my point entirely. The academics who read The Age are an even smaller category of people!

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  12. Maverick says:

    SJ’s heavy-handed approach toward censoring views contrary to hers is the ultimate act of hypocrisy considering her calls for a more inclusive and democratic approach to community leadership. As such, I agree with David W that there is little point in community leaders or academics debating here as their views are likely to be censored or deleted.

    Alex, I implore you to reply to Daniel’s post above. He raises some good points that require a response from you.

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  13. Michael says:

    I would still like to thank him for the free publicity he has so generously given this blog, through his opinion piece.

    ” You are a shameless attention seeker, even if the publicity you achieve hurts others”. Says Daniel

    Now how would Daniel come to that conclusion? .. A few Quotes from a Modest M’s Fein,

    We are in The Age!

    : We Made News!

    I would still like to thank him for the free publicity he has so generously given this blog, through his opinion piece !

    Readers, yesterday was unlike any other since we began the blog on May 12. Previously, our greatest number of unique viewers was 762. Yesterday, our visitors numbered 2,279.

    The response to the article in The Age about this blog has been staggering. Comments have been flooding in and unique visits have soared.

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  14. fragezeichen says:

    I think this blog shows only how fractured the jewish community really is. The childish bickering is fantastic. Keep up the entertainment.

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  15. Maverick says:

    Fragezeichen – the sad thing is that exposing the “fractures” appears to be the purpose of this blog. If you have read some of the posts, you will notice that nothing constructive is written here. Rather, it is full of contempt and rage against this community and its leaders. Luckily, as you will see from comments on this site, there are only about 10 people actually visiting here,eight of which appear to be trolls.

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  16. fragezeichen says:

    “United we stand, divided we fall.”

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  17. Lynette the Christian says:

    Dear dear dear – and I thought our mob was bad. Well, if it makes you guys feel any better our ‘friends’ the muslims aren’t any better either. Every religion/community has it’s hissy fits, and from what I am witnessing here things ain’t gonna change in a hurry. As far as Jerusalem is concerned, that unhappy city has been fought over for centuries. Even King Soloman couldn’t solve that one….:( however, as I am a cheery soul I want to leave you all with an uplifting video:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDC0Bqyc-2w

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  18. wolfie says:

    Dvir Abramovich writes: “…there’s nothing sensible about a blog that judges an entire community.”

    Yet Abramovich individually commits the same faux pas – he judges Fein based on his perception of her lack of involvement in the Jewish community; furthermore, he marginalises her voice by stating that “she should she should engage with the institutions of the Jewish community” instead of voicing herself on a blog.

    Perhaps Abramovich would like to tell us which Jewish institutions he thinks members of the Jewish community need to attend, to have a right to a voice within the Jewish community?

    Or is a Jewish blog, for Jewish voices, not enough of a Jewish forum to allow a Jew a voice?

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  19. eli says:

    All i can say is that its great to see some great debate being generated. That ego’s are bruised That academics and bloggers reputations are questioned.It makes for great reading. Regardless of the spite and anger that is being splattered over the websites and pages of media. It’s energetic,vociferous and a hell a lot better than the chitter chatter of the cabal of 5 or so that regularly dominated the “letters to the editor” in news for Jews..oops sorry The Jewish News.

    Thumbs up says Nero!

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  20. wolfie says:

    And, Alex?

    When my soon-to-be-born son is ready to have his Bris i’ll send you an invite. Of course, the legitimacy my son’s voice has in the Jewish community will correlate directly with the severity of the cut..

    Gotta be serious about these Jewish institutions…

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  21. Maverick says:

    Great to see everyone off topic for a change!

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  22. Maverick says:

    Hey Eli/Nero

    I am not sure how the five or so posters here are any better than the AJN regulars…same old, same old…

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  23. wolfie says:

    Maverick – how exactly are we off topic?

    Abramovich said Alex would do well to attend a few more Jewish Institutions – i was just ensuring she got her required does of attendance in shule to ensure she has a right to speak on Jewish topics, by making sure she’ll recieve a notification of when my son’s bris is to occur.

    As for same old, same old…you seem to be putting out quite a few posts yourself *laughs*

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  24. Daniel says:

    Albert said
    August 30, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    Danial [sic] to claim as you do that the “. The Age is the most disgracefully anti-Israel and often anti-Semitic mainstream newspaper in the country. ” is as infantile as it is ridiculous.

    Wow. Devastating rebuttal to a well documented issue.

    The Age is well known to be pro Israeli

    By whom? Hamas? The Palestinian Lobby?

    it rarely prints articals [sic] that are critical of Israel.And as for the Australian , its editors know exactly where they are expected to stand.

    Ah yes. Powerful Jewish control over the media. Where have we heard that one before?

    Nice crowd you’ve attracted, SensibleJew.

    To read indepth [sic] articals [sic] that are truthfull [sic] and critical of the Israeli/Palestine issue one need to go to Israeli papers such as Haaretz.

    Popular with illiterates everywhere…

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  25. Daniel says:

    sensiblejew said:

    Great to see such a vigorous debate.

    What vigorous debate?

    I posted some very serious argument at comment #5, to which you are yet to respond or acknowledge.

    This isn’t “debate”. It’s you getting all gooey because you’ve had a handful of comments to your blog (including by several very odious characters).

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  26. Sisu says:

    Wow. This has become unpleasant very quickly. Where is the perspective?

    Firstly, it’s a blog. Read or not read, contribute or don’t contribute… but what I am seeing here is a lot of name calling and not a lot of constructive debate. But I’m new, this is only my fourth post – maybe there are masochists who like this.

    Re: Anti-Semitism, Daniel what do you have to back-up the allegations that the Age is “often Anti-Semitic” (compared to other mainstream newspapers in Australia)? Criticising the actions of the nation-state of Israel is not anti-Semitism, although I would argue that criticising ONLY Israel is anti-Semitic. Does The Age do this? I recall many articles reporting on the actions of Palestinian terrorists and Hamas… as well as articles on individual Israelis and Palestinians. So from where I sit, The Age is not displaying anti-Semitism. Unless, of course, you equate any criticism of Israel to be anti-Semitic, in which case there can be no discussion.

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  27. Pein says:

    Hi Alex.

    Mazeltov my old friend.

    Long life to you and your family.

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  28. Albert says:

    Daniel if you understood the politics of newspapers you would understand that when the big boss makes a strong statment, the result is selfcensorship.

    Murdoch: Europe is ‘poisoned’ by anti-Semitism
    March 6, 2009

    NEW YORK (JTA) — Media mogul Rupert Murdoch said Europe was “poisoned by an anti-Semitism we thought had been dispatched to history’s dustbin.”

    Murdoch made his remarks March 4 in New York upon receiving the National Human Relations Award from the American Jewish Committee.

    Murdoch also said of Israel, “In the end, the Israeli people are fighting the same enemy we are: cold-blooded killers who reject peace … who reject freedom … and who rule by the suicide vest, the car bomb and the human shield.”

    “These are men who can’t abide by the idea of freedom, tolerance and democracy, they hate Israel, they hate us,” said the 77-year-old media baron, who owns News Corp. “No sovereign nation can sit by while a civilian population is attacked.”

    Joking that some of his enemies think he is Jewish and that some of his friends wish he was Jewish, Murdoch said, “Let me set the record straight: I live in New York. I have a wife who craves Chinese food. And people I trust tell me I practically invented the word ‘chutzpah.’ ”

    The AJC award recognizes Murdoch’s professional and philanthropic work.

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  29. The one thing that I really can’t get my head around , is why does this blog worry him so much. Really does he believe that because of what you write that you have no authority.

    This guy needs to grow up , it seems he does him self more harm by speaking, I am glad you wont be silenced , maybe he should move to Iran or China and try that crap.

    keep up the good work and welcome back

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  30. Michael says:

    Sisu must be getting a different edition of The Age than other Victorians .

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  31. Sisu says:

    Well, as Sisu himself said, “Unless, of course, you equate any criticism of Israel to be anti-Semitic, in which case there can be no discussion.”

    Clever guy ;)

    Michael, if you are so firmly convinced that The Age is a funnel for anti-Semitism, then why did they even publish Dvir Abramovich’s opinion on Sunday? If The Sensible Jew is self-hating anti-Zionist rhetoric, why not just leave any contrary view as written by Abramovich out of it?

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  32. Michael says:

    I guess for example Sisu you would consider today’s al’ age coverage of the Israeli/Arab conflict [ 3 articles by KOUTSOUKIS] and also the last one week’s coverage fair and balanced ?

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  33. Sisu says:

    I apologise Alex if I am derailing this thread…but in response to Michael’s question:

    I think we need to apply some sort of objective filter to the three articles. I will address each separately, using the criteria 1) is it newsworthy? 2) is it relevant? 3) is it impartial in its reading?

    First Article: Ex-prime minister Olmert charged with corruption.

    Is it newsworthy? Yes.
    Is it relevant? Maybe. I’m not sure if all countries would have the same space allocated to the alleged misdoings of former leaders. Certainly America, England, France, Germany would; as would New Zealand and most of our Pacific neighbours. I also recall Palestinian leaders having similar coverage when they were accused of corruption. So if you consider Israeli politics important to some Australians, yes it is relevent.
    Is it impartial? Yes. I find it factual in its presentation.

    Second Article: Settler burden weighs on Israel

    Is it newsworthy? Probably not. It doesn’t tell us anything new and the figures it quotes are from 2005…so without checking further it seems to just rehash old information.
    Is it relevant? No
    Is it impartial? It reads impartially, but I’m not sure why it is published.

    Third Article: Weary minders of the West Bank

    Is it newsworthy? No.
    Is it relevant? No.
    Is it impartial? No, I see it as subjective.

    So in answer to your question Michael…. 2 out of 3 appears fair and balanced, but only 1 of those three seems newsworthy. Does it hint at some sinister anti-Semitic or anti-Israel bias? I don’t think so… it is clearly anti-settler but that does not equate to being anti-Semitic.

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  34. Chook says:

    Dvir might well be an academic and all, but he, like anyone else in the community is just one voice with one opinion, and in my opinion usually not such a good one. For example, his rantings about “don’t mention the Holocaust” do us more harm than good. He is incapable of carrying out the simplist critical analyses to determine in what context the Holocaust can be used, whether in comedy, or otherwise. His conservitism drives him to paranoia. Unfortunately, him being an academic allows him more media space than us simple folk and he comes across as the voice of the Jewish community, whereas I reckon half the community wouldn’t even know who he is.

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  35. Michael says:

    No Sisu it equates to one thing only The Age ..Fairfax in General are completely obsessed with Israel and Jews..

    You can not tell me that with all the pages Fairfax dedicate to Israel and Jews it is not out of all proportion to other conflicts and newsworthy stories around the world [including the barbarism Palestinians continue to carry out between them selves ] However you have to read The Australian to find out about all that.

    Are Australians that interested in the Israel/Arab,Muslim conflict to the exclusion of all other worldly events, I don’t think so.

    The age could be part of the Al -Jazeera stable and fit in quite cozy . Of course the anti Zionists would not agree but they do not agree Pilger, Carter, Frazer, Robinson, The UN etc are bias in any way against Israel.

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  36. Michael , stop reading the Age it must be doing you head in, it’s just one newspaper, I am sure that Australians read many articles to form their opinion. it appears yours is rock solid and bad u get over it, it you don’t like something stay away.

    What a boring place it would be if every one agreed with you, I however that this would be at all possible.

    and like you asked ” Are Australians that interested in the Israel/Arab,Muslim conflict to the exclusion of all other worldly events, I don’t think so” and I suppose that is why The Age covers all the news, obviously because you don’t like what they say you don’t read.

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  37. Sisu says:

    Michael, I doubt any rational analysis will change your point of view. Let me rephrase that – in my limited time here I know that nothing I can say will change your point of view.

    I have already said my piece on The Age. We do have racial and religious vilification laws in this country; if The Age is truly the dispicable anti-Semitic trash you see it to be, then pursue it as a legal matter. I would be interested to see how you go but less interested to see you (inevitably) post that the Victorian courts and judicial law is clearly anti-Semitic as well.

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  38. Daniel says:

    I am sure that Australians read many articles to form their opinion

    I don’t think that is the case. Personally, I read all the newspapers daily, as well as overseas, online newspapers and blogs. I am a news junkie. However most people would simply read one paper.

    Years ago, the Fairfax papers (SMH and Age) were considered much classier than the Telegraph and Herald Sun. Today, they are little more than left-wing communist ragsheets. However, people still make the assumption they are like they were – quality broadsheets, instead of what they have become.

    The Australian is this country’s finest newspaper, for sure. However it doesn’t cover local issues as much.

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  39. Sisu says:

    On the subject of biases (although not focusing on Israel / anti-Semitism), the ANU has published a study on media bias – interesting reading. http://news.anu.edu.au/?p=1594

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  40. sensiblejew says:

    Almoni – regarding deletions: you’re probably right..

    What say I leave things be for the rest of the day and we’ll see what happens.

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  41. sensiblejew says:

    Hi Eli/Nero :) , Wolfie, and everyone else.

    Great to see such a vigorous debate.

    Wolfie, I’d be honoured to come to your son’s bris.

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