Nov. 27, 2018
You have to admire Matti Friedman. He bucked the entrenched wisdom to expose the unfairness (here and here) of the media’s excessive focus on Israel by, for instance, the Associated Press. And he did so as a liberal when being liberal, for the most part, means being down on Israel. In other words, Friedman doesn’t allow his political beliefs to color the truth—something that’s not as easy as it sounds, especially when one has a journalist’s platform to use or abuse.
Today I discovered that Friedman’s not only a great writer whose morals remain intact, he’s also a rousing speaker, personable, witty, and fun. You can listen to him rapt, for as long as he’s willing to give of his time, and still be left wishing for more. The former AP columnist held forth on the subject of How to Report the Middle East from the Middle East at the Jewish Media Summit in Jerusalem, and even gave the audience a chance to ask questions, which he answered with long, thoughtful responses.
Friedman, an Israeli Canadian journalist, began by describing the how small Israel is within the world at large, the infinitesimal space taken up by its land mass. Even within the Middle East, Israel takes up just