Skip To Content
Israel News

Was TV Host ‘Shameful’ for Grilling Danielle Berrin About Ari Shavit Groping?

Los Angeles Jewish Journal writer Danielle Berrin thought she was invited on Israel’s Channel 2 to talk about Jewish media in the diaspora on a visit Israel for a conference on the topic this week.

But instead she found herself bombarded with questions about her being groped.

Channel 2 correspondent Oded Ben Ami grilled Berrin about Ari Shavit, the Israeli bestselling author whom Berrin said attacked her when she interviewed him about his book “My Promised Land.” Shavit resigned from posts at Haaretz and Channel 10 in October after a second woman accused him of sexual misconduct in the pages of the Forward.

Danielle Berrin Image by Courtesy of Danielle Berrin

In Berrin’s interview with Ben Ami, which aired on December 4, the Israeli TV newscaster launched into questions about Shavit right away, telling Berrin that “of course” he must ask her whether she was in touch with Shavit since she was visiting Israel. (She was not).

“Here I was getting excited to talk to you about the Jewish media summit I came to see,” Berrin replied, looking surprised.

Ben Ami proceeded to ask her about her acceptance of Shavit’s public apology. He then brought up the case of Israeli general Ofek Buchris, who was accused of sex crimes by two lower-ranking female soldiers, suggesting that Berrin was a “leader” who inspired other women to come forward. Ben Ami only briefly veered from the topic to ask Berrin for a “few words” about the U.S.-Israel relationship after Donald Trump’s election. He asked nothing about Jewish media.

Reached by the Forward, Berrin said she was “very upset” at Channel 2, calling the interview a “shameful effort at sensationalism.”

Berrin’s Channel 2 interview was coordinated by the Israeli Government Press Office, a co-host of the Jewish Media Summit which brought dozens of journalists from Jewish newspapers across the world to Israel. Berrin was told that the interview would cover the question of “why Jewish media is essential in the world.”

Berrin said she knew that Ben Ami would ask her about Shavit, but was dismayed that the topic was the focal point of the interview.

“I made it clear to [Channel 2] that I felt the interview utterly lacked newsworthiness and a thoughtful, fresh line of questioning.”

A spokesperson for Channel 2 declined to comment.

Ravit Hecht, a reporter at Haaretz, panned the interview in a column saying that it was conducted for the purpose of “pure gossip, the joy of shaming, and the cynical calculations of TV ratings.”

Contact Naomi Zeveloff at [email protected]

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.