‘NYT’ announces Rudoren’s return to NY

US Politics
on 38 Comments

Jodi Rudoren of the New York Times is coming home. Two days ago, Joe Kahn, the international editor of the Times, tweeted:

She’s coming back after less than four years on the job. The appointment is regularly described as a four-year term. Her fourth anniversary would be in April 2016.

Jodi Rudoren wrote this generous statement yesterday on Facebook that begins by saying she’s leaving right on schedule….

I knew this would be my last Thanksgiving in Jerusalem, but I had not expected to be cooking amid packing up and saying goodbyes. The Rudorens depart Jan. 1 for New York. I will be deputy on The Times’ international desk, a thrilling and daunting next step as we continue to expand our global audience and transform our report in the digital age.

On this Thanksgiving — or, as it is known here, Thursday — I am so grateful for the incredible, generous, insightful and intrepid Palestinians and Israelis who enabled me to do this most demanding work, and experience this most complicated place. You have taught me endlessly, you have supported me thoroughly, you have challenged my brain, you have filled my heart. Journalists who guided me, sources who shared with me, friends who embraced me — even advocates who attacked me: you have helped me grow and see and question, and question. Exactly why we came here, exactly why I’ve been doing this journalism thing all these years.

So, thank you. And as my feed broadens its lens beyond this backyard, I hope you’ll keep following, commenting, reading the report and pushing me to do and be my best. Todah and Shukran!

And so the revolving door turns in the edifice of official journalism. I wonder if she isn’t glad to be getting out. This is the highest pressure reporting job in the print media, it can’t be much fun. The pressure from the Israel lobby is much greater than the pressure from the equal-rights-grass-roots. Look at the retweets on Kahn’s announcement, it’s all from Israel supporters bashing Rudoren.

When I met Rudoren in 2012, I told her that imho her job was to communicate to the elites and the influence leaders back home that the two state solution was dead, or all but dead; there’s no way that we are going to see a viable Palestinian state whose capital is East Jerusalem. She did not take up that responsibility; one cannot be ahead of the Washington Narrative here; and so the challenge remains for her dashing successor. Two weeks ago there was the unconfirmed report that New York Times White House correspondent Peter Baker will be replacing Rudoren as Jerusalem bureau chief.

We were initially sanguine about Rudoren. My hangover lasted for years. I started saying that Rudoren was culturally bound: from the Jewish community, for the Jewish community. Next Monday night she’s speaking at the JCC in Manhattan; sold out, but on livestream. She’s spoken to an American Jewish Committee group and to the National Council for Jewish Women, who were having a “celebrate” Israel event. I can’t remember any speeches she’s given to Palestinian groups, or church groups either, let alone at anti-Zionist gatherings.

I think some of this is structural; it’s the Upper West Side, Jake. The Times is under institutional pressure from the pro-Israel NY establishment. As former Timesman Neil Lewis wrote at CJR: “It is no exaggeration to say that for a century [the NYT] has served, in effect, as the hometown paper of American Jewry.” Rudoren’s predecessor Ethan Bronner after the usual protestations about objectivity has worked as a flack for the Israeli army, not long after his son served in that organization.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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38 Responses

  1. pabelmont
    November 27, 2015, 5:52 pm

    She’s learned the rules for reporting from Israel. Didn’t take too long. Initially she appeared to promise to be better than the previous skunk, but the white-stripe accessory was just too good to pass up,

    How long will it take for her to learn what can (and what cannot) be said about all the other countries whose existence the NYT acknowledges?

  2. ckg
    November 27, 2015, 6:58 pm

    Welcome home.

    • JLewisDickerson
      November 28, 2015, 3:20 am

      That’s mean. Her hair isn’t quite that bad. I kind of like it.

      • italian ex-pat
        November 28, 2015, 4:55 pm

        OK, so the hair is not THAT bad, if you want to be kind. But . . . what about that face?
        Meow.

  3. Kay24
    November 27, 2015, 10:04 pm

    No doubt she will be doing Israel dirty work in NY too. She has poisoned many minds with her biased reporting.

  4. DaBakr
    November 27, 2015, 10:31 pm

    As if there wasn’t ample proof that PW operates, thinks and opines in the bubble of bourgeois northern east coast, left-wing academia infused fringe we have statements like:

    ” ..I told her that imho her job was to communicate to the elites and the influence leaders back home that the two state solution was dead…”

    So the paper of record should naturally be directed at the left-wing elitists who naturally, again, know better then anybody else about what is good and what is the ‘moral’ way to portray and report upon the I/P conflict. I would go on to illustrate how many ways in which the far-left fringe has failed to grasp the realities and the de-facto rules that have been set for decades but it would be useless as the bubble in which PW and his MW staff and commenters is far to tough to be penetrated by anything so simple and blunt as reality.

    • diasp0ra
      November 28, 2015, 3:16 am

      @DB

      I find it interesting you keep labeling everybody you disagree with as left, far left and fringe. I find it even more interesting that “left” and “leftist” is a pejorative to a massive amount of Israelis and is often used in the context of treachery.

      As if you have a grip on reality DB.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        November 28, 2015, 8:00 am

        Remember that for Israelis, ‘far left’ means someone who would probably be considered a moderate social democrat in most of the Western world (not including the US which skews almost as far to the right as Israel does).

        In Israel, the late, unlamented Ariel Sharon was considered a ‘centrist’. As too, increasingly, is Netanyahu. Like so many other words (‘peace’,’terrorist’, ‘self-defence’ etc) ‘moderate’ and ‘lef-wing’ just don’t mean the same thing in hasbarese as they do in other languagues.

      • Talkback
        November 28, 2015, 8:56 am

        diasp0ra. “I find it interesting you keep labeling everybody you disagree with as left, far left and fringe. I find it even more interesting that “left” and “leftist” is a pejorative to a massive amount of Israelis and is often used in the context of treachery.”

        That’s not the only thing DaBakr et al have learned from certain Germans.

      • DaBakr
        November 28, 2015, 10:49 pm

        @d

        I think PW has made it very clear that he identifies as progressive and left. If you want to be obtuse and find thing things I write “interesting” I suppose I could give you an example of the far-left Israeli fringe. You should really know better since articles and op-eds from Haaretz are ubiquitous on MW and the Israeli readership of said ‘lefty’ news rag is something like in the single digits of % of readers. But ‘heroic’ figures here on MW like G.Levy, A.Haas qualify as far-left. Others like A.Oz qualify as left but not so fringe.
        Your grip on “reality” is based on whatever else you get your political views from in addition to MW. That is your reality. It shouldn’t surprise you to learn that Israelis have a completely different view of what constitutes the insanity of the far-left fringe, the left, the center left and the majority of Israeli center-right. But then you were the one who is mentioning treachery which you seem to find interesting

      • DaBakr
        November 28, 2015, 10:51 pm

        @mx

        I might take some issues pertaining to what is ‘right’ and far-right in the US and Israel but in general your statement contains nothing I would disagree with.

      • Donald
        November 29, 2015, 12:18 pm

        DeBakr, in any society where group A benefits from the oppression of group B, those in group A who are dissenters and feel guilt about the situation will be mocked and seen as fringe characters. That’s pretty much universal. The situation can change in a couple of ways. Maybe the group A is somehow forced (it could be via nonviolent means) to change its ways, or alternatively enough of them might be persuaded that they really have no stake in oppressing group B. Eventually, if all goes well, the dissenters are seen as people who were ahead of their time. That can take awhile. American historians in the mid 20th century were still portraying abolitionists as fanatics–it took the Civil Rights movement to change the treatment abolitionists received at the hands of white American historians more than a century later.

    • talknic
      November 28, 2015, 6:43 am

      @ DaBakr …and commenters is far to tough to be penetrated by anything so simple and blunt as reality

      Reality like Israel being in breach of UNSC resolutions in respect to the territories it occupies such as UNSC res 476? One of the plethora of UNSC resolutions that affords Israel the opportunity to adhere to the binding laws it reaffirms and emphasizes, all of which Israel has ignored.

    • ckg
      November 28, 2015, 8:00 am

      “the bubble in which PW and his MW staff and commenters”

      Please see recent UNGA resolutions to see who lives in a bubble.

      • DaBakr
        November 28, 2015, 10:57 pm

        @ ck, tk et al…

        The UN has lost any shred of credibility it had after the vote on Zionism, then the inaction in Rwanda and finally in its constant, obsessive and compulsive focus , time and monies spent on a disproportionate amount of meaningless ‘;resolutions’ against Israel while ignoring most of the worlds most egregious violators of basic human rights. Th UN has become a sham organization controlled by the Arab/Muslim block and its captive nations dependent on its economic support while the SC has become a joke with the US the only nation with the balls to draw a line at what is wrong and what is right. And even that may soon be a thing of the past. In fact, the only thing I ever agreed with the infamous R.Falk was his idea to move the UN to Istanbul or Ankara. Brilliant idea that couldn’t be implemented sooner afaic.

      • Donald
        November 29, 2015, 2:03 pm

        Sheer nonsense. The UN as a whole is ineffective on human rights, but the UN human rights council does plenty of work on a great many subjects, as you would know if you stopped reciting hasbara and ever bothered to look. And the UN’s ineffectiveness is because member states like the US don’t want it to be effective when it criticizes one of America’s allies. I think you blathered on this before, citing that hypocrite Moynihan of all people, or maybe that was some other drivel-spouting poster. Moynihan, of course, took pride in making sure the UN would be ineffective when Indonesia invaded East Timor.

        But don’t let facts complicate your narrative–you wouldn’t have any sort of case if you did.

    • CigarGod
      November 28, 2015, 9:30 am

      In the dbakr bubble there is a left, far left, elite left. But nowhere else in america do they exist except in a museum like greenhaus or two.

      • DaBakr
        November 28, 2015, 11:02 pm

        @cc
        I guess the meaning of the usage of “bubble” escapes you as evidenced by your response.

    • John O
      November 28, 2015, 9:40 am

      @DaBakr

      “bourgeois northern east coast, left-wing academia infused fringe”

      Wow! Eight modifiers in a row. No, I don’t know what that proves either, except for possible evidence of OCD.

      • DaBakr
        November 28, 2015, 11:00 pm

        @jo

        I could have used more but I decided to limit myself. still-i have written nothing that isn’t common knowledge in the US from rags like the WSJ , Bloomberg, and even beginning to take hold in bastions of left thinking like Atlantic and very occasionally the pages of the lousy NYT. Are you really so surprised?

  5. Krauss
    November 28, 2015, 1:46 am

    People don’t like tribal explanations because it reduces the amount of intellectual flourishes you’re able to go out on.

    But that’s exactly the reason for why Rudoren acted the way she acted. It’s why the NYT will only appoint Zionists(Jewish or not) to the post. Baker is married to a Jewish Zionist. When the TNR changed mast, he was tweeting in support of the older crew. That should be telling you where he falls in the liberal spectrum. For me, the TNR regime change was a watershed moment.

    It signalled the beginning of the end of the PEP crowd, who so often traficked in anti-Arab and anti-black racism and never shied away from running with their neocon fellow travellers in boosting wars in the Middle East(and motivated by what, exactly, again tribalism).

    Yet Baker went out of his way to bash the new understanding how the old liberal elites were too racist and too warmongering. If you expect any miracles from this guy, you’re delusional.

    We have to be honest with the fact that “reform from within” is dead and finished. It will be forced from the outside and the Jewish institutions, of which I count the NYT as one, will never change until their door is slammed down and they are dragged kicking and screaming to a place which isn’t enabling and enforcing a culture of racism against Palestinians.

    It’s not what you want to hear, Phil, you believe in the Jewish redemption story, but this is what is happening before our eyes. The anti-Zionist Jews are growing in number but if your base is zero any growth at all looks amazing. It’s still a highly marginal element.

  6. JLewisDickerson
    November 28, 2015, 7:55 am

    RE: “I think some of this is structural; it’s the Upper West Side, Jake. The Times is under institutional pressure from the pro-Israel NY establishment.” ~ Weiss

    FROM THE 1974 FILM CHINATOWN:

    Evelyn Mulwray: “Tell me, Mr. Gittes: Does this [a cut nose] often happen to you?”
    Jake Gittes: “Actually, this hasn’t happened to me for a long time.”
    Evelyn Mulwray: “When was the last time?”
    Jake Gittes: “Why?”
    Evelyn Mulwray: “It’s an innocent question.”
    Jake Gittes: “In Chinatown.”
    Evelyn Mulwray: “What were you doing there?”
    Jake Gittes: “Working for the District Attorney.”
    Evelyn Mulwray: “Doing what?”
    Jake Gittes: “As little as possible.”
    Evelyn Mulwray: “The District Attorney gives his men advice like that?”
    Jake Gittes: “They do in Chinatown.”

    SOURCE – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0071315/quotes

  7. Kay24
    November 28, 2015, 9:13 am

    Pres. Obama refuses to recognize new Israel Squatter Settlements on Palestinian Land

    http://www.juancole.com/2015/11/recognize-settlements-palestinian.html#comment-366903

    The easiest course of action would be to STOP THE AID and support of Israel. They would sing a different tune, and those damn illegal settlements would stop.
    It must be hard for the US to convince the world they are honest brokers in this situation, when you keep kissing the criminals who break international laws.

  8. Maximus Decimus Meridius
    November 28, 2015, 9:39 am

    Lest we think that only the New York Times is at fault, over at the Jonathan Freedland Guardian, Peter Beaumont is fretting over the Fears of the Israeli Occupation Soldier:

    “A van slows at the junction near where the Guardian is taking photographs. The driver explains he has come to pick up his daughter, a young female soldier, who is too frightened to make the journey home to Tel Aviv.”

    I mean, what IS the world coming to when a soldier gal can’t enjoy a stress-free occupation?

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/nov/27/gush-etzion-occupied-west-bank-symbol-escalating-violence

    BTW speaking of ‘occupation’ I could be wrong (I didn’t bother to read the whole piece) but I don’t think the word makes a single appearance in Beaumont’s ‘article’.

    • John O
      November 28, 2015, 9:44 am

      I took a different lesson when I read this bit of Beaumont’s article – that the IDF apparently lets its soldiers find their own way home or back to barracks through hostile territory. Most moral, most moral.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        November 28, 2015, 1:28 pm

        John O,

        Good point. But to me, the very idea that an occupation solider – someone who, according to international law, is a legitimate target for violent resistance (ie they could be shot dead and this would not be considered a crime under international law) should consider it an upheaval to no longer be able to go home by public transport shows just how cost-free and normalised the occupation is. It would be like me whining about how I had to take a taxi home from the office because I felt unsafe using the bus.

        No wonder the Israeli ‘army’ is such rubbish, if they consider it a hardship to feel unsafe in a country they occupy.

    • just
      November 28, 2015, 9:54 am

      Yeah, I read that gag- worthy article, too.

      ‘Occupation’ appears once, and ‘occupied’ also appears once. ‘Settlements’ is mentioned 6 times, and “settlers” 4 times.

      However, the correct designation of ILLEGAL is never associated with ‘settlements/settlers’~ perish the thought!

      Thanks for “I mean, what IS the world coming to when a soldier gal can’t enjoy a stress-free occupation?”

      (iirc, the IOF aren’t really known for their high standards, morality, or bravery…)

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        November 28, 2015, 1:20 pm

        @just

        Thanks for doing the legwork! The Guardian these days is no different to the NYT. Vastly disproportionate attention to Israeli casualties, justification for the – far greater – Palestinian casualties, and now we’ve got the Anguish of the Israeli Occupation Soldier. Now we just need a ‘Jerusalem correspondent’ who had a son serving in the IDF, and the transformation will be complete!

        “(iirc, the IOF aren’t really known for their high standards, morality, or bravery…)”

        Indeed not. But the fact that a – presumably armed – soldier could even consider a ‘pain-free occupation’ to be their right tells you an awful lot about how entitled Israelis are. I guess we’ve got painfree dentistry, so why not painfree occupation? For the occupier only, of course, certainly not the occupied.

  9. shalom
    November 29, 2015, 9:57 am

    I guess it’s either seeing the Situation your way Philip or you’re a flack? Actually, I think Rudoren worked pretty hard to be neither Amira Hass or Caroline Glick, but to see and report on what she saw and heard with her own voice to a rather tough audience and as best I could tell took plenty of hits from all sides….

    • Donald
      November 29, 2015, 12:31 pm

      So in your view Hass is the equivalent of Glick? But Hass is critical of Hamas. If you want someone on the opposite end you’d have to find a journalist who is in agreement with Hamas.

      This, of course, is the problem with both the NYT and apparently your own view. You see the two extremes as someone on the one hand who thinks Israel can do no wrong, vs people who believe in human rights and who are in fact critical of the human rights violations of both sides, but focus more on Israel because its crimes are much greater. You see the spectrum ranging from Glick to Hass, and so someone who downplays Israeli brutality, but isn’t a fanatic like Glick represents the sensible center for you.

    • diasp0ra
      November 29, 2015, 12:45 pm

      @Shalom

      It doesn’t take a genius to see how slanted Rudoren’s “reporting” was. I remember she literally argued in one article that Israelis are the biggest victims of the last “war” in Gaza because the Palestinians are basically used to it. Such neutrality there.

      Furthermore, there is a world of difference between Glick and Hass. But they are not opposites as you seem to portray them.

      It always takes more critical thought to go against the status quo and ruling power system than it is to defend it.

    • Donald
      November 29, 2015, 12:49 pm

      And btw, I don’t think Phil wants the NYT at to read like Mondoweiss. This is an activist blog with a point of view. A newspaper should try to give the facts first and foremost, without spin. I think if it does so,the objective reader would end up seeing that the Palestinians are the oppressed group, but there would be full reporting without spin about the atrocities and killings of all factions. What we get from the NYT is material which is often subtly or not so subtly spun to imply, for instance, that every Palestinian death in the past month or so has been justified, because they were either killed while committing or attempting to commit terrorist acts, or killed while engaged in violent clashes with Israeli soldiers. An objective newspaper would point out that some of the alleged killings of terrorists are disputed (that is, in some cases we don’t know the facts) and in the case of the demonstrations many people have been killed or wounded when they were just standing there.

  10. Scott
    November 30, 2015, 9:46 am

    I’m glad to see that the Times is giving Jodi a fitting send-off by letting her publish a 2500 word piece on how Israelis are creating the wine that Jesus drunk.

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