Balance needed in media coverage

Elizabeth Hersh is Senior Rabbi at Temple Emanuel (TE), and a blogger on the Jewish Light’s website (

By Rabbi Elizabeth Hersh

In the Dec. 2, 2015 edition of the New York Times, the sports section featured an article entitled “Hidden Details Reveal Munich Attackers’ Cruelty.” As I read this article I recalled being only six years old and learning about the horrific murders at the Munich Olympics of the Israeli athletes and coaches. Then and even more so now, I am shocked and appalled at the lack of protection the Israeli athletes were provided. And now I wonder why the commission has been so reticent to acknowledge these slain human beings, simply because they were Jews, in Germany of all places. While I understand there are plans to remember the Munich victims in Rio in 2016, there are finally plans to finance a memorial in Munich.

New heart-wrenching photos have been discovered which the New York Times “has chosen not to publish them because of their graphic nature.” I applaud this. Now, I would like the Times to stop publishing graphic photos of Israeli soldiers, or at least to be consistent.

The newspaper rarely publishes a photo of Palestinians killing Jews. One of the lectures we heard in Israel was from a Palestinian-Arab-Muslim journalist who simply stated “No Jews. No News. The western media drives reporters and photographers to place Israelis in a less than favorable spotlight. This particular journalist worked for NBC news for 20 years. He was fired when his crew wanted to interviews the parents of Palestinian youth who were murdered by Hamas. NBC New York said “NO.”

So let me ask you, New York Times, what was the real reason behind your decision? Was it to sanctify the memory of the murdered athletes or was it political? Think about using some consistency, please, in your reporting.