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      Israel Media Attacks Haaretz Writer's 'Demonization' of Israel

      Israel’s Hebrew-language Maariv printed an unusual attack on Haaretz after a London Independent interview with “the most hated man in Israel.”
      By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
      First Publish: 10/17/2010, 2:27 PM / Last Update: 10/17/2010, 2:49 PM

      Arutz 7

      Israel’s Hebrew-language Maariv newspaper published an unusually scathing attack on Haaretz after the London Independent interview with its columnist Gideon Levy, “the most hated man in Israel,” according to the London newspaper

      Levy has been the guiding light of the left-wing newspaper that has waged a war against the “occupation” as the cause of most, if not all of all, of Israel’s problems with Arabs. The newspaper also has championed further concessions to the Palestinian Authority, has campaigned for allowing illegal Bedouin villages to remain standing and against deporting illegal African immigrants. Encouraging the growth of non-Jewish populations is in line with a left-wing agenda to prevent the likelihood of a religious Jewish majority in Israel in the near future.

      Levy’s latest onslaught against Israel was published in the Independent, a newspaper with a long history of anti-Israel articles.

      The newspaper described Levy as “the most hated man in Israel – and perhaps the most heroic” because of his unrelenting campaign," which the newspaper said has been done “without propaganda.”

      However, the interview is filled with inaccuracies and fiction, to which Ben Dror Yemini of Maariv responded at length.

      Levy told the Independent, “My biggest struggle is to re-humanize the Palestinians. There’s a whole machinery of brainwashing in Israel which really accompanies each of us from early childhood, and I’m a product of this machinery as much as anyone else.”

      Yemini responded in Maariv, “If you wish to destroy us by concocted demonization against Israel, you should read Gideon Levy’s interview…. Where exactly is this mechanism?... [Palestinian Authority negotiator] Saeb Erekat [and Knesset Member] Ahmed Tibi and others appear in the Israeli media a lot more than most members of the Knesset...

      “Where is the brainwashing? The negative image of Arabs is the result of a conflict that lasted a hundred years. It's not the image that created the conflict. That conflict created the image. “ Yemini also pointed out that the PA education system for years has systematically encouraged suicide attacks and teaches that Jews are sub-human and that all of Israel is Palestine.

      The Haaretz columnist also charged that “the occupation is the best excuse for many worldwide terror organizations. It’s not always genuine but they use it. Why do you let them use it? Why give them this fury? Why not solve it once and for all, when the solution is so simple?”

      Yemini responded, “This is another legend prevalent in Berkeley [left-wing] circles and maybe in a coffee shop in Sheinkin,” referring to an artsy street in Tel Aviv popular among left-wing leaders. "There is a legend and there are facts: Almost all terror in the world in the last few years developed from systematic murders by Muslim Jihad terrorists.“ Yemini cited research that found that international terror has claimed nearly 20,000 victims in Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan, Yemen Iraq and other countries. Yemini adds, "But Levy not only markets lies, he also creates them.”

      Levy also told the Independent about how IDF soldiers allegedly are "trigger-happy… like having a cigarette. They didn’t shoot just one bullet…. They shoot at the Palestinians like this on a daily basis. They do it every day."

      Yemini asks, "Every day? The number of Palestinian fatalities in the past year, with the current security situation, approaches zero. Most Palestinians, most of the time, do not see an Israeli soldier. Individual victims, as has been for a long time, are almost exclusively those who try to infiltrate Israel from Gaza… or are killers from the ranks of Hamas, who opposed arrest.”

      Levy also related the allegation that Israeli media headlined coverage of an Israeli dog that was killed by a Kassam missile in Operation Cast Lead, the same day that coverage of “dozens of Arabs being killed, was relegated to a brief on the inside pages."

      Yemini said he looked through Yediot Aharanot, Israel’s largest Hebrew daily, and found no report on a dog being killed. He also checked other newspapers and all he found were “countless articles for deliberations and safeguarding human life and human dignity. Only one thing does not exist: Gideon Levy's dog.”

      Levy also alleged that Hamas “almost always” fired Kassam missiles “after an IDF assassination operation, and there have been many of these.”

      Regarding Cast Lead, the three-week counterterrorist campaign to combat eight years of thousands of rocket and mortar attacks on civilians in southern Israeli cities and towns, Levy claimed, “That wasn’t a war. It was a brutal assault on a helpless, imprisoned population….

      “A state that takes such steps is no longer distinguishable from a terror organization. They say as a justification [for bombing civilian areas] that Hamas hides among the civilian population. As if the Defense Ministry in Tel Aviv is not located in the heart of a civilian population! As if there are places in Gaza that are not in the heart of a civilian population!”

      Levy did not point out that Hamas operated from a hospital, which the IDF did not bomb because it was a medical facility. Levy also failed to state that Israel expelled 9,000 Jews from Gaza and withdrew its entire military from the Gaza region in 2005, but that Hamas continued to attack Israel. Yemini wrote that the terrorist organization strikes Israel only "because of its stated opposition to Israel’s existence."

      As for the Ministry of Defense being located in a civilian area, Yemini wrote, “There is something perverse in comparing a situation in which the Pentagon or the Egyptian Ministry of Defense or the Israeli Defense Ministry are in Washington, Cairo or Tel Aviv, and launching rockets from a residence.”

      Levy also charged the “peace process” was “a scam from the start, doomed to fail” because “a necessity for peace is for Israel to dismantle settlements in the West Bank [Judea and Samaria].”

      Maariv’s Yemini pointed out that Arab terror, under Yasser Arafat, began in 1965, long before the alleged ”occupation” after the Six-Day War in 1967 war that resulted in Judea and Samaria and united Jerusalem being restored to Israel.  

      "Even Pravda pales next to Levy,” Yemini wrote.  ad%