Opinion: Haaretz English at 25: Diaspora Jews Meet Israel’s Gritty Reality

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By fostering a less romanticized, more critical view of Israel, Haaretz English has helped inform and fuel a growing debate in the diaspora about Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. (Credit: Artwork by Anastasia Shub)
For liberal Jewish readers abroad, the front-row seat that Haaretz English provides to a less rose-tinted reality of Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is discomfiting – and compelling.

By Dov Waxman | Haaretz | Sept 8, 2022

Committed to journalistic independence…Haaretz English has consistently delivered unvarnished reporting and unrestrained opinion, in stark contrast to the rose-colored hasbara (public diplomacy/propaganda) of the Israeli government, which is all too often echoed in much of the Israeli and Jewish press.

When the English edition of Haaretz was first published in September 1997, Benjamin Netanyahu was prime minister of Israel, for the first time. A quarter-century later, he looks likely to become prime minister again, for the seventh time.

But while Netanyahu continues to dominate Israeli politics, in many other respects – both positive and negative – Israel has significantly changed since Haaretz English first appeared.

The country is wealthier, more integrated into the region and into the global economy. Its society is even more diverse and more fractious. Its politics are more right-wing, reactionary and religious. Its relations with its neighbors are more conflictual (with the Palestinians), and more cordial (with the Gulf Arab states).

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