Murdoch: Why Is “Jewish Owned” Media Anti-Israel?

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Nov. 18 2012 9:45 AM

Rupert Murdoch Wonders Why “Jewish Owned” Media Have “Anti-Israel” Bias

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News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch is no stranger to controversy

Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

In yet another round of the media mogul who tweets, Rupert Murdoch is raising eyebrows again. On Saturday night, the News Corp chief executive took to the micro-blogging service to ask: Why Is Jewish owned press so consistently anti- Israel in every crisis?”

The fervently pro-Israel mogul had written other tweets Saturday criticizing press coverage of the Gaza conflict. “Middle East ready to boil over any day. Israel position precarious,” he tweeted. “Meanwhile watch CNN and AP bias to point of embarrassment.” He then wondered: “Can’t Obama stop his friends in Egypt shelling Israel?” Following these musings, the Huffington Post’s UK political director Mehdi Hasan wondered, also on Twitter (of course), “Who is the bigger Twitter troll these days? Donald Trump or Rupert Murdoch?”

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In how many ways is Murdoch’s tweet offensive? Let the Daily Beast’s Peter Beinart, who calls Murdoch’s tweet “downright dumb and offensive,” count the ways. First, the allegation is factually “absurd,” writes Beinart. It’s also offensive to journalists because “it implies that institutions of the ‘press’ should reflect the ideological biases of their owners.” And to top it all off, it’s offensive to Jews because it suggests “Jewish media-owners should let their Jewishness guide their journalism.”

The Telegraph’s Damian Thompson says Murdoch needs to explain himself. “I look forward to a full explanation in tomorrow's Times, which is – rightly – quick to expose the sort of anti-Semitism that harps on about Jewish control of the media,” writes Thompson.

Meanwhile, Politico, always ready to jump in on the buzz, compiles a slide show with “15 explosive Rupert Murdoch tweets.”

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the "Today's Papers" column from 2006 to 2009. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoliti.

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