The New York Times was slammed Friday for saying the Israeli Army is best known for “pioneering cutting-edge ways to kill people and blow things up” and is only now saving lives because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The Israeli Defense Ministry’s research-and-development arm is best known for pioneering cutting-edge ways to kill people and blow things up. Now it is turning to saving lives,” The Times tweeted to promote its article.
The article, written by David Halbfinger, is headlined: “Israeli Army’s Idea Lab Aims at a New Target: Saving Lives.”
“Stealth tanks and sniper drones [are] among its more lethal recent projects. But its latest mission is lifesaving. Since March, it has been spearheading a sprawling, high-speed effort to unleash some of the country’s most advanced technologies against an enemy of another kind: Covid-19,” Halbfinger wrote.
Many took to Twitter with thoughts on the story:
The New York Times did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The Times' coverage of Middle Eastern affairs has long been a point of contention. Back in 2018, the pro-Israel watchdog group Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) put up a large billboard outside the paper's Manhattan headquarters accusing it of "defaming Israel with distorted 'news.'"
To coincide with the billboard, CAMERA also created a timeline of what it considered The Times’ “stumbles” when covering the Arab-Israeli conflict. The timeline featured 18 examples of alleged bias against Israel since the CAMERA project began in December 2017. The group accused The Times of everything from ignoring anti-Semitic rhetoric to putting a spotlight on a decade-old recording of the Israeli prime minister's wife losing her temper during a phone call.
Also in 2018, critics on social media accused the paper of anti-Israel bias in the newspaper's reporting on riots in the Gaza Strip that left dozens of Palestinians dead.
Last year, The New York Times Opinion section issued an apology over a cartoon that was called offensive because of "anti-Semitic tropes."
Fox News’ Frank Miles and Samuel Chamberlain contributed to this report.