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Ha'aretz

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Ha'aretz

Haaretz
Type Daily Newspaper
Format Berliner
Owner Schocken Family (60%)
M. DuMont Schauberg (20%)
Leonid Nevzlin (20%)
Publisher Amos Schocken
Editor Aluf Benn[1]
Associate editor Tammy Litani
Founded 1919
Political alignment Liberal, secular, political left
Language Hebrew and English editions
Headquarters Tel Aviv, Israel
Circulation 72,000
(Weekends: 100,000)[2]
Official website http://www.haaretz.com

Haaretz (Hebrew: הארץ‎) (lit. "The Land [of Israel]", originally Ḥadashot Ha'aretzHebrew: חדשות הארץ‎, IPA: [χadaˈʃot haˈʔaʁets] – "News of the Land"[3]) is Israel's oldest daily newspaper. It was founded in 1918 and is now published in both Hebrew and English in Berliner format. The English edition is published and sold together with the International Herald Tribune. Both Hebrew and English editions can be read on the Internet. In North America, it comes out as a weekly newspaper, combining articles from the Friday edition with a roundup from the rest of the week. It is known for its staunch left-liberal stance on domestic and foreign issues.

Overview

Compared to other mass circulation papers in Israel, Haaretz uses smaller headlines and print. Less space is devoted to pictures, and more to political analysis. Its editorial pages are considered influential among government leaders.[4] Apart from the news, Haaretz publishes feature articles on social and environmental issues, as well as book reviews, investigative reporting, and political commentary. In 2008 the newspaper itself reported a paid subscribership of 65,000, daily sales of 72,000 copies, and 100,000 on weekends.[5] The English edition has a subscriber base of 15,000.[6][7] As of June 2011, readership was 5.8% of the public, down from 6.4% the prior year.[8] In 2013, amid falling circulation, Haaretz was undergoing severe cuts (reportedly firing around 20% of its total workforce, and lowering salaries by between 15-35%).[9]

Despite its historically relatively low circulation in Israel, Haaretz was for many years considered Israel's most influential daily newspaper.[10][11][12][13] Its readership includes members of Israel's intelligentsia and members of its political and economic elites.[14][15][16] Surveys show that Haaretz readership has a higher-than-average education, income, and wealth; most are Ashkenazim.[7][17] In 2007, Shmuel Rosner, the newspaper's former U.S. correspondent, told The Nation that "people who read it are better educated and more sophisticated than most, but the rest of the country doesn't know it exists".[7] However, the former prestige and influence the newspaper once held in Israel has arguably waned in recent years, along with its standing in the country's political life.[18][19][20]

History and ownership

Haaretz was first published in 1918 as a newspaper sponsored by the British military government in Palestine.[21] In 1919, it was taken over by Russian Zionists.[22] Initially, it was called Hadashot Ha'aretz ("News of the Land"). Later, the name was shortened to "Ha'aretz". The literary section of the paper attracted the leading Hebrew writers of the time.[23]

The newspaper was initially published in Jerusalem. From 1919 to 1922, the paper was headed by a succession of editors, among them Leib Yaffe. It was shut down briefly due to a budgetary shortfall and reopened in Tel Aviv at the beginning of 1923 under the editorship of Moshe Glickson, who held the post for 15 years.[22] The Tel Aviv municipality granted the paper financial support by paying in advance for future advertisements.[24]

Salman Schocken, a wealthy German-Jewish Zionist who owned a chain of department stores in Germany, bought the paper in 1937. His son, Gershom Schocken, became the chief editor in 1939 and held that position until his death in 1990.[25]

Until August 2006, the Schocken family owned 100% of the Haaretz Group, but then the German publisher M. DuMont Schauberg acquired 25 percent of the shares.[26] The deal was negotiated with the help of former Israeli ambassador to Germany, Avi Primor.[27] This deal was seen as controversial in Israel as DuMont Schauberg's father, Kurt Neven DuMont, was member of the German Nazi party, while his publishing house promoted Nazi ideology.[28]

On 12 June 2011, it was announced that Russian-Israeli businessman Leonid Nevzlin had purchased a 20% stake in the Haaretz Group, buying 15% from the family and 5% from M. DuMont Schauberg. This means that the Schocken family now owns 60% and M. DuMont Schauberg and Leonid Nevzlin have 20% each.[29]

In October 2012, a union strike mobilized to protest planned layoffs by the Haaretz management. As a consequence, both the Haaretz newspaper and its TheMarker business supplement were not printed for one day. According to Israel Radio, it was the first time since 1965 that a newspaper did not go to press on account of a strike.[30][31]

Management

The newspaper's editorial policy was defined by Gershom Schocken, who was editor-in-chief from 1939 to 1990. The current editor-in-chief of the newspaper is Aluf Benn, who replaced Dov Alfon in August 2011.[32] Alfon's predecessor, David Landau, succeeded Hanoch Marmari[33] and Yoel Esteron in April 2004. Charlotte Halle became editor of the English Print Edition in February 2008.

Editorial policy and viewpoints

Haaretz describes itself as broadly liberal on domestic issues and international affairs.[34] Others describe it alternatively as liberal,[35][36][37][38][39] centre-left,[40] left-wing,[41][42][43] or far-left.[44][45] In 2006, the BBC said it has a moderate stance on foreign policy and security issues.[46] David Remnick in The New Yorker described Haaretz as "easily the most liberal newspaper in Israel", its ideology as left-wing and its temper as "insistently oppositional."[47] The newspaper's op-ed pages are open to a variety of opinions.[48]

J. J. Goldberg, the editor of the American The Jewish Daily Forward, describes Haaretz as "Israel's most vehemently anti-settlement daily paper".[49] US weekly The Nation describes Haaretz as "Israel's liberal beacon", citing its editorials voicing opposition to the occupation, the security barrier, purportedly discriminatory treatment of Arab citizens, and the mindset that led to the Second Lebanon War.[7]

Criticism

Andrea Levin, executive director of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting (CAMERA), stated in 2008 that among Israelis Haaretz is seen as a "rather far-left publication" and accused the newspaper of doing "damage to the truth" and failing to correct errors.[50] Earlier, in 2001, Levin criticized Haaretz correspondent Amira Hass for inaccurate reporting and charged Haaretz with fueling anti-Israel bias.[51] However, a 2003 study in The Harvard International Journal of Press/Politics found that Haaretz reporting was more favorable to Israelis than Palestinians and more likely to report stories from the Israeli side.[52]

According to its competitor The Jerusalem Post, Haaretz editor-in-chief David Landau said at the 2007 Limmud conference in Moscow that he had told his staff not to report about criminal investigations against Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in order to promote Sharon's 2004–2005 Gaza disengagement plan.[53][54][55]

In March 2010, The Jerusalem Post reported that a pollster was unhappy with the way his poll results regarding Israeli views regarding President Obama were presented in the English edition of Haaretz, which he felt was "misleading", due to the fact that the Hebrew word "inyani" had been interpreted as "fair" instead of "businesslike".[56] Also in 2010, several columnists at The Jerusalem Post, including deputy managing editor Caroline Glick, criticized Haaretz for its role in the Anat Kamm affair.[57][58][59]

Internet editions

Haaretz operates both Hebrew[60] and English[61] language websites. The two sites offer up-to-the-minute breaking news, live Q&A sessions with newsmakers from Israel, Palestinian territories and around the world, and blogs covering a range of political standpoints and opinions. The English online edition receives an average of two million visitors per month. Both websites have blogs and are open to readers' comments.[62] The two sites fall under the supervision of Lior Kodner, the head of digital media for the Haaretz Group. Individually, Ruti Zuta is the editor of Haaretz.com (English) and Avi Scharf is the editor of Haaretz.co.il (Hebrew).

Internet blogs and columns

  • In September 2009, Haaretz.com launched a blog by Tel Aviv University Professor Carlo Strenger, called "Strenger than Fiction"[63]
  • Focus U.S.A.[64] – Blog by U.S. correspondent Natasha Mozgovaya who replaced Shmuel Rosner as U.S. correspondent in August 2008. Rosner's blog was "Rosner's Domain"[65] and explored Israeli, American Jewish, and Zionist issues in the United States.
  • "A Special Place in Hell" is Bradley Burston's award-winning, twice-weekly blog on Haaretz.com[66]
  • Israeli President Shimon Peres formerly blogged exclusively for Haaretz.com[67]

Offices

The Haaretz building, a low-slung building in south Tel Aviv, is situated on a street named for the Schocken family. The Haaretz building houses the art collection of Amos Schocken, one of the country's major collectors of Israeli art, some of it politically subversive.[68]

Notable journalists

Present

  • Ruth Almog – literature, publicist
  • Moshe Arens – columnist
  • Noam Ben Ze'ev – music critic
  • Aluf Benn – editor-in-chief
  • Meron Benvenisti – political columnist
  • Bradley Burston – political columnist[69]
  • Lily Galili [70]
  • Doram Gaunt – food columnist
  • Avirama Golan
  • Michael Handelzalts – theater critic, columnist
  • Amos Harel – military correspondent
  • Israel Harel – columnist
  • Danna Harman – feature writer
  • Amira Hass – Ramallah-based Palestinian affairs correspondent.
  • Avi Issacharoff – military correspondent
  • Sayed Kashua – satiric columnist, author
  • Uri Klein – film critic[71]
  • Yitzhak Laor – publicist
  • Alex Levac – photo columnist
  • Gideon Levy – Palestinian affairs columnist
  • Yoel Marcus – political commentator, publicist[72]
  • Merav Michaeli – cultural and political commentator
  • Amir Oren – military affairs
  • Tsafrir Rinat – environmental issues
  • Doron Rosenblum – satirist, publicist
  • Yossi Sarid – retired politician, publicist
  • Tom Segev – historian, political commentator
  • Ari Shavit – political columnist[73]
  • Yair Sheleg – Jewish religious affairs[74]
  • Nehemia Shtrasler – economic affairs, publicist
  • Simon Spungin – Deputy Editor, English Edition
  • Ze'ev Sternhell – political commentary
  • Yossi Verter – political reporter
  • Esther Zandberg – architecture
  • Benny Ziffer – literature, publicist

Past

  • Daniel Ben Simon[78]
  • Ruth Sinai – social welfare and humanitarian issues
  • Gidi Avivi – popular music critic[79]
  • Ze'ev Segal – law
  • Nadav Shragai
  • Daniel Rogov – food and wine critic
  • Akiva Eldar – diplomatic affairs analyst[80]
  • Aviva Lori [81]

Supplements and special features (print edition)

  • All week
News, op-eds, political commentary
Gallery (Culture, entertainment, television and radio listings)
TheMarker business supplement
Sudoku puzzle
  • Friday
Extended news coverage
Musaf Haaretz weekend magazine
Culture and literature
Real estate
Local news
  • Sunday
Sports (extended)
  • Wednesday
Musaf Hasfarim book supplement

See also

References

Further reading

  • Der Spiegel, 31 December 2008.
  • The New Yorker, 28 February 2011

External links

  • Haaretz (English)
  • Haaretz (Hebrew)
  • About Haaretz
  • Unofficial Haaretz Mobile website (English)
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