Netanyahu denies calling 'New York Times' and 'Haaretz' enemies

JERUSALEM (JWN and agencies)–Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has denied telling the editor of The Jerusalem Post that Israel’s two greatest enemies are The New York Times and Haaretz.

Post editor Steve Linde related in an address to the Women’s international Zionist Organization in Tel Aviv on Wednesday that Netanyahu had made the remark to him at a recent meeting. According to a recording of the WIZO meeting, Linde said:

“Netanyahu said, ‘You know, Steve, we have two main enemies’. And I thought he was going to talk about, you know, Iran, maybe Hamas. He said, ‘It’s The New York Times and Haaretz.’ He said, ‘They set the agenda for an anti-Israel campaign all over the world. Journalists read them every morning and base their news stories … on what they read in The New York Times and Haaretz.’ ”

The Prime Minister’s Office denied the account and asked Linde to publish a clarification stating that his account was his own analysis of the conversation with Netanyahu.

Linde told The 7th Eye, an Israeli media watchdog site, that he didn’t know there would be journalists in the audience, otherwise he wouldn’t have shared the story. He also said that his words “were taken out of context.”