+972 Magazine's Stories of the Week

Directly In Your Inbox

Analysis News
Visit our Hebrew site, "Local Call" , in partnership with Just Vision.

Pro-Netanyahu daily omits criticism from protester's suicide note

Israel Hayom, a pro-Netanyahu daily newspaper, redacted the prime minister’s name from a widely-published letter distributed by a man who tried to immolate himself at Saturday’s social justice protest in Tel Aviv.

There was considerable shock among social protest activists after a protester named Moshe Silman from Haifa set himself on fire yesterday, during a march in front of a government building in Tel Aviv. Mr. Silman saw his business collapse because of an unpaid debt;  many activists in Haifa knew him from previous protest events. The government’s refusal to provide Mr. Sliman with subsidized housing, even though he was unable to work due to his medical condition, touched on the main issue that ignited the protest movement last year – i.e., the lack of affordable housing.

Mr. Sliman is fighting for his life in a Tel Aviv-area hospital. Meanwhile, emergency rallies were held in Haifa, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. Several protesters were detained by police for attempting to block roads.

Before setting himself on fire, Mr. Silman distributed a letter in which he blamed Prime Minister Netanyahu and Finance Minister Steinitz (as well as some low level government bureaucrats) for his troubles, and for “what the country is doing to people like me.” The letter was read by protesters in rallies and published by every major media outlet in Israel.

Every outlet except one, that is. Israel Hayom, the free daily published by rightwing gambling billionaire Sheldon Adelson, ran a photo of the letter but redacted the part criticizing the prime minister. The paper didn’t choose to publish only a part of the letter, but rather cropped out a couple paragraphs so the sentences about Netanyahu and Steinitz were completely deleted. The parts complaining about social security were left in the letter.

This is the paragraph that was deleted from the letter:

I blame Bibi Netanyahu

and [Minister of Finance] Yuval Steinitz

both scum

for the humiliation that disenfranchised citizens go through day in and day out, that take from the poor and give to the rich, and to public servants

Here is a picture of the original letter (left) and the version which appeared on Israel Hayom (right).

Suicide letter of Moshe Silman (left) next to an edited version published on Israel Hayom

Israel Hayom is the most widely read paper in Israel. It is distributed for free at considerable loss by Mr. Adelson, who is a major supporter of Prime Minister Netanyahu and his wife, Sarah. Many people view the emergence of Israel Hayom as part of an effort by Netanyahu to take over the media and silence criticism against his policies.

Read Also:
Top pundit for Sheldon Adelson’s free daily – on PM Office payroll

Before you go...

A lot of work goes into creating articles like the one you just read. And while we don’t do this for the money, even our model of non-profit, independent journalism has bills to pay.

+972 Magazine is owned by our bloggers and journalists, who are driven by passion and dedication to the causes we cover. But we still need to pay for editing, photography, translation, web design and servers, legal services, and more.

As an independent journalism outlet we aren’t beholden to any outside interests. In order to safeguard that independence voice, we are proud to count you, our readers, as our most important supporters. If each of our readers becomes a supporter of our work, +972 Magazine will remain a strong, independent, and sustainable force helping drive the discourse on Israel/Palestine in the right direction.

Support independent journalism in Israel/Palestine Donate to +972 Magazine today
View article: AAA
Share article
Print article

    * Required


    1. Chepsky

      Basically a Las Vegas Casino Gangster Don Sheldon Adelson has taken over Israel, his very own kingdom and Bibi is his caporegime.

      Reply to Comment
    2. “the free daily…”
      You’re free too. And daily.
      The redaction is so stupid as to blatently show what this popular press thinks of its readers. All to the good.

      Reply to Comment
    3. eli


      If redacting is wrong then why did you redact the letter? (notice the covered lines).

      Obviously you to believe that suicide letters must not be necessarily reproduced verbatim.

      Reply to Comment
    4. max

      Noam, aren’t you misleading your readers by not reporting all that Israel Hayom reported?
      The fact is that Israel Hayom clearly reported that both the PM and FM have been accused by Moshe Silman

      Reply to Comment
    5. eli

      I guess that’s the value of noams “independent reporting” (actually cut and past from some politically motivated facebook page)

      Reply to Comment
    6. yidl

      As they say in Yiddish: a partial truth is a whole lie.

      Reply to Comment