Debating Amira Hass' Lifetime Achievement Award

A recent full-page ad in The New York Times announced that Israeli journalist Amira Hass will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Women’s Media Foundation at an October 20 luncheon at New York’s Waldorf-Astoria Hotel.

Hass is a reporter and columnist at the influential Israeli newspaper Haaretz who is best known for her coverage of the daily life of Palestinians, and for her sympathetic perspective toward them.

According to the IWMF’s press release:

The award to the controversial journalist, who still lives in Ramallah, the headquarters of the Palestinian National Authority, has sparked criticism in the Jewish blogosphere.

The staunchly right-wing pro-Israel group CAMERA (Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America) wrote on its blog here that “President Obama isn’t the only one receiving awards based on as-yet-unattained accomplishments.”

The blog continues:

Phyllis Chesler, the feminist and anti-Islamist writer, on her blog, describes Hass’ critique of Israel as one which “constitutes a veritable Blood Libel.”

Chesler writes:

Hass describes Israel as an “apartheid” state. Her columns in Ha’aretz, a left-leaning Israeli newspaper, are often stomach-turning.

Chesler goes on to cite a 1996 interview Hass did with The Jerusalem Post:

Other winners of this year’s IWMF awards are female journalists in Belarus, Cameroon and Iran, three of the most oppressive countries in the world, and most dangerous for journalists. Each has faced threats to their lives and arrest in connection to their work.

An email seeking comment from Hass elicited no response.

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