As noted last week on CAMERA’s Snapshots blog, promotional material for an upcoming New York Times “Journeys” trip to Israel misleadingly referred to Israeli communities near the border with the Gaza Strip as “settlements.” A screenshot from the original passage about the “The Seventy Years of the State of Israel” follows:
The term “settlements” in The New York Times (and in common usage) is used specifically to denote communities built in disputed territory, and in the Western milieu it is not used in reference to villages inside Israel. This usage is especially problematic in light of the fact that the newspaper often raises questions about the legal legitimacy of “settlements.” The inaccurate message to readers, then, is that these towns in Israel near the Gaza Strip are somehow controversial or disputed.
Following communication from CAMERA, Times editors have commendably removed to the reference to “settlements surrounding the Gaza Strip,” replacing it with “communities surrounding the Gaza Strip.”
As of this writing, though, The Times has failed to correct the second inaccurate use of terminology in the “Journeys” Israel trip promotional material. As Snapshots previously noted, The Times urges readers to “travel with experts from The New York Times, a leader in its evenhanded coverage of Israel, Palestine and the Middle East.”
Referring to the West Bank as “Palestine” contravenes standard New York Times style. References to a modern “Palestine” in the West Bank and Gaza are inaccurate, and those areas should be referred to the West Bank and Gaza or, where appropriate “Palestinian Authority territories.” National Geographic, The Los Angeles Times, and Voice of America have commendably corrected this very same point in recent weeks.
By inaccurately referring to the West Bank as “Palestine,” The New York Times unintentionally tips off perceptive and informed readers that far from being “a leader in its evenhanded coverage,” the Gray Lady has a longstanding tilt against Israel.
Update, 12:20 PM EST: Times Corrects ‘Palestine’ Reference
Following publication of this post, Times editors have commendably corrected the erroneous reference to “Palestine.” The text now instead refers to “Palestinians.”
For additional New York Times corrections prompted by CAMERA, please see here.