Honest Reporting

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Honest Reporting

Overview:

HonestReporting is an Israeli organization which tries to portray any criticism against Israel as being “biased” against Jews and any coverage of Israel’s atrocities against the Palestinian people as an act of “unprofessional journalism”.

Through its “MediaCentral project”, HonestReporting tries to technically support journalists focused on Israel with translation services in order to ensure that their coverage favors Israel. According to the Milstein foundation – one of its main funders – HonestReporting has more than 100000 subscribers and “handles over 1,000 inquiries from journalists each year”.1

By organizing courses in universities and various institutions, the organization also directs journalists and reporters on how to justify Israel’s atrocities against Palestinians.2

Harassment of journalists

HonestReporting also engages in the online harassment of journalists.

In one prominent case, senior CNN journalist Octavia Nasr was fired in 2010 for her comments casting the Lebanese Hezbollah group in positive light. HonestReporting seized the opportunity to push for her dismissal from CNN.

“Is Nasr a Hezbollah sympathizer? This is disturbing enough given that the group is designated a terrorist organization by the U.S. and is committed to the destruction of Israel,” the group wrote.3

Nasr, which was CNN’s lead Middle East editor for 20 years, described her dismissal by CNN as a result of “astroturfing”, referring to organized lobbying designed to appear as popular “grassroots” demand.

Funding

Many news outlets have described the organization as an Israeli propaganda machine. Despite being registered in New York, its editorial staff are based in Jerusalem. It has branches in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, France, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand. While HonestReporting claims that it is not related to any government or political party or movement, it is in fact a client of heavyweight lobbyists and politicians such as real estate mogul Adam Milstein and Lenny Ben-David, a former senior Israeli diplomat in Washington, DC.

HonestReporting is also managed by the “educational” Zionist Aish HaTorah organization based in occupied Jerusalem. The group is known for its involvement in promoting racist, islamophobic and pro-Israel material, described as “Hasbara”.4

1.https://www.milsteinff.org/supported-organizations/honestreporting/
2.https://web.archive.org/web/20090620103123/http://www.honestreporting.com/a/page.asp?page=12
3.https://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/07/07/cnn-drops-editor-after-hezbollah-comments/
4.https://web.archive.org/web/20090114014704/http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=43983

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