For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
Monday, May 7, 2012
CAMERA - Ha'aretz, Lost in Translation
CAMERA Media Analysis..
06 May '12..
There’s Ha’aretz in Hebrew and then there’s Ha’aretz in English, and it’s not just language or circulation which sets them apart. (The Hebrew edition of Ha’aretz has a very low circulation in comparison to other Israeli newspapers; its influential English site is the go-to portal for Western journalists, policymakers, diplomats, and a vast public.)
Close reading of both print editions over the course of years has revealed an ongoing pattern. In preparation for the English edition, the Hebrew articles (most Ha’aretz stories are written first in Hebrew) are not merely translated – they’re often also whitewashed. In sometimes dramatic and sometimes subtle cases, time and again, information appearing in the Hebrew original concerning Palestinian militancy, violence and other Arab wrongdoing is downplayed or omitted entirely. In some instances, the English account is completely at odds with the original Hebrew.
For instance, on Jan. 11, 2011, Zvi Barel wrote in Hebrew about a plan by Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat to link the eviction of Jews residing in an illegal building in the neighborhood of Silwan to the eviction of Arabs also living in illegal buildings in the same neighborhood: “A house in which Jews live illegally will be exchanged for a house in which Palestinians live illegally.” (Emphasis added.) The Hebrew report was factually correct.
The English translator, however, whether intentionally or not, gave the sentence an entirely new – and false – meaning, rendering the “illegal” Palestinian house “entirely legal.” The English read: “A house in which Jews live illegally will be exchanged for a house in which Palestinians live entirely legally.” (Emphasis added.) Is this either an entirely innocent slip of the pen or perhaps subconscious editorializing on the translator's part? It's impossible to know, but the introduction of the word "entirely," which does not appear in the Hebrew original, suggests something perhaps more deliberate at play. (The English edition, online and print, was subsequently corrected after Presspectiva, CAMERA's Hebrew site, contacted editors. See "Presspectiva, CAMERA's Hebrew Site, Prompts Improvements," below.)
This case would be striking enough as a stand alone item, but unfortunately it is consistent with a clear trend, which CAMERA has begun to document on its blog (blog.camera.org) but which warrants an extensive published study. The following is a partial collection of some of the highlights of the “Ha’aretz, Lost in Translation” series. (All translations from Hebrew are CAMERA’s.)
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I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"