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Journalist For NYT Detained, Released by Israel

Ben Ehrenreich is on assignment for the ‘New York Times Magazine’

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Ben Ehrenreich.(PENUSA)

A couple hours ago, pro-Palestinian activist Abir Kopty tweeted that “Israeli border police arrested NYT magazine’s reporter a while ago at ‪#NabiSaleh‬.” New York Times Jerusalem bureau chief Jodi Rudoren reported on Twitter that the journalist in question was detained rather than formally arrested, and has been released.

New York Times Magazine editor-in-chief Hugo Lindgren confirmed to me over email that the journalist in question is Ben Ehrenreich, a recent National Magazine Award winner, who was on assignment. He “was detained but not arrested, and he has been released,” Lindgren said.

Ehrenreich, who won a 2011 National Magazine Award for an article in Los Angeles magazine that followed a body from death to its grave, has also written two novels (I’ve read the first, The Suitors,and it’s excellent). His mother is the journalist Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickel and Dimed, and his sister is the national security expert and journalist Rosa Brooks.

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We should all be aware that this is a man who wrote an article for the LA Times entitled, “Zionism is the Problem.” He should not exactly be welcomed with open arms into Israel.

gemel says:

Ben Ehrenreich, as evidenced by his writing, is anti-Zionist, anti-Israel and, despite his protestations, anti-Semitic. So we now know what the NY Times Magazine is planning for the near future – another anti-Israel piece.

The New York Times is the problem.

During the Shoah they kept the news a secret from the public. It’s owner was an avowed anti-Zionist who didn’t want the US to do much about European antisemitism (he regarded Judaism as “merely a religion.”)

The NY Times didn’t seem to learn much about their stance towards Jews during WW2. They still regard Jews as expandable to their “progressive” ideology.

Let’s also remember that The NY Times did not report about the actual conditions in the Soviet Union in the 30’s. Repression, mass starvation, never existed as far as they were concerned.

btw: I don’t believe that Mr. Ehrenreich was arrested. He was probably stopped for identification purposes and being a very “special person” he thought he was above suspicion.

btw: the fact that he was as award winning journalist is immaterial.

harveystein says:

Jacob, Gemel, and Raeefa – why demonize people? Why demonize an entire newspaper? The Times has “left wing” writers, and also “right wing” writers (like David Brooks, and the blogger Shmuel Rosner).

But the bigger thing is: anyone who is critical of the current Israeli POLICIES is not anti-Israel, or anti-semitic. Your accusations sound like the things said in Communist Russia, or other totalitarian regimes. Silence the ones who criticize! Accuse them of horrible things, so they will be hated by all!

I for one believe Israel, under the current Likud leadership, with its dreams of “Greater Israel” from the Jordan River to the Sea, is leading Israel into a black hole. Democracy is being shoved out the window, and criticism is silenced by them also.

If we continue on this course, undoubtedly the over 2 million Palestinians who live in the West Bank (I’ve met some of them who’ve lived in the same village there for 300 years) will demand equal citizenship as their settler neighbors. Then Israel will become one of two possibilities:

1. A completely non-democratic state (exactly like South Africa), with two classes of people living within its borders.

2. A non-Jewish state, because soon, more than 50% of the people who live between the River to the Sea will be non-Jewish.

Or…as some Greater Israel fantacists dream: the 2 million Palestinians will magically be transported to Jordan, using a teleporter from Star Trek.

Which of these options do you prefer? Do you see where Israel is headed if we don’t try to create 2 states side by side in the waning years this is possible?

I am a Zionist (I believe in a Jewish state), pro-Israel (Israel is a 100% legitimate state, IF it leads the way towards a permanent, fair resolution with the Palesitnians), and a semite (by the way, Arabs are semites as well!). But I believe the current administration, and maybe readers like you, are living in a complete fantasy world. A world where the only possibility is conflict and war, death, and “us-versus-them” thinking until the end of time. What a terrible, un-Jewish (Jews choose life!) way of thinking.

    gemel says:

    Harvey Stein, you must have not read Ehrenreich’s pieces where he states
    he is opposed to the existence of a Jewish state. His anti-Israeli and
    anti-Zionism is clear and unchallenged, as are his one-sided statements
    and evaluations of Israeli policies. He is also opposed to a two-state
    solution. The demonization of Israel, the double-standards used to judge Israel and his delegitimization of Israel are a basis for stating he acts anti-Semitic.

    The NY Times sending someone like that to Israel to report is slanting any results in an extreme manner.

    The word anti-Semitism refers specifically to anti-Jewish attitudes and
    behavior – if you wish you can check the origins of the word. It has
    nothing to do with who is a semite.

    As for the NYTimes, no one can seriously deny the left-wing bias,
    despite the fact that it includes a few non-left wing op-ed writers for
    seeming balance. Calling the NY Times left-wing iis not demonizing, but
    a statement of fact. If we acknowledge it then we can be aware of the
    bias in what we get from the NYTimes.

      I always thought antisemitism was kind of a stupid word–plenty of Arabs (who speak Semitic languages) are antisemitic. I know about the historical origins, but can’t we start a campaign to use ‘anti-Jewish’ instead?

    harveystein, you say that ”
    anyone who is critical of the current Israeli POLICIES is not anti-Israel, or anti-semitic. Your accusations sound like the things said in Communist Russia, or other totalitarian regimes. Silence the ones who criticize! Accuse them of horrible things, so they will be hated by all!”

    No one said that criticism of Israel is antisemitic. Criticism of its existence you go on to do is antisemitic. It’s also reminiscent of the attacks on the Jewish state made by the Soviet State.

    It is you harvey who sounds like an antisemitic Bolshevik, not the people who criticize the NY Times.

    mikegre says:

    Mr. Stein uses South Africa as an example. I wonder if he has bothered to see the reality of South Africa today.


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Journalist For NYT Detained, Released by Israel

Ben Ehrenreich is on assignment for the ‘New York Times Magazine’

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