The Corner

Politics & Policy

The New York Times’ Inadequate ‘Apology’ for Its Anti-Semitic Cartoon

(Lucas Jackson/Reuters)

The New York Times International published an obviously anti-Semitic cartoon of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu — depicted as a dog wearing a Star of David tag — leading a blind Donald Trump, who is wearing a yarmulke.

The paper has issued a mild apology on its Opinion Twitter feed — where it was soon buried by other posts–saying it included anti-Semitic tropes (the whole cartoon was one big anti-Semitic trope) that were offensive, stating passively that it was error of judgment to print it, and that the New York Times News Service and Syndicate has deleted it.

But it was in the international edition of the paper. You can’t delete that! So there will be an editor’s note published in Monday’s paper.

I am sorry, this (sort of) apology is utterly insufficient. If the Times management was as horrified by the international edition’s transgression as they should be, they would engage in the same deep repentance — meaning a sincere and articulated apology combined with a commitment to change — that the paper would demand of other publications (particularly conservative) that committed similar wrongdoing.

For example, the paper should explain in detail how the cartoon came to be published. It should explain what — if any — disciplinary actions were taken against those that made the decision to print it, and what steps the paper is taking to ensure there are no repeat performances. And they need to promise to be on heightened guard against yielding to the anti-Semitic impulse.

I doubt that will happen. Issuing such a watery apology speaks volumes about the lack of seriousness with which the Times management apparently takes the issue.

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