Two NYT Journalists Sign Letter Blaming Israel for 'Genocide' and 'Apartheid'

Jamie Lauren Keiles, Jazmine Hughes (Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for American Society of Magazine Editors, Noam Galai/Getty Images for American Society of Magazine Editors)
November 2, 2023

At least two New York Times writers signed a letter that blames Israel for Hamas's Oct. 7 terrorist attack on the country, accusing the Jewish state of "genocide" and "apartheid."

Times Magazine writers Jazmine Hughes and Jamie Lauren Keiles are listed as signatories on an Oct. 26 letter by the group Writers Against the War on Gaza. The letter says that Israel caused the barbaric terrorist attack against itself and commits "genocide against the Palestinian people." The signatories accuse Israel of being an "apartheid state" for fighting terrorists and say they stand with Palestinians' "anticolonial struggle."

Hughes for years made racist and anti-Semitic comments on social media, even after the Times hired her, Breitbart reported in 2019. In one post that is still up on X, formerly Twitter, Hughes wrote that "jews are inDEED good with money." She also wrote for the Times's 1619 Project, an "antiracist" series of articles that makes what historians say are false claims about American history.

The Times in recent days has faced multiple accusations of anti-Semitism. The paper late last month reenlisted a Gaza-based freelancer, Soliman Hijjy, who has a history of praising Adolf Hitler and Hamas's terrorism against Israel. The Times told the Washington Free Beacon that Hijjy "understood our concerns" about his Hitler praise and has "delivered important and impartial work."

On Oct. 26, the same day the Writers Against the War on Gaza letter was published, a Times report cited an "expert" who had called the date of Hamas's attack on Israel a "sweet day." In 2021, the Times published an op-ed by and flattering profile of Palestinian professor Refaat Alareer, who last week joked about whether an Israeli baby was baked alive on Oct. 7 "with or without baking powder."

The Free Beacon reported in December 2021 that the Times issued an "epic" correction of its Alareer profile, noting that the professor has said Israeli poetry "brainwashes" readers into thinking that Israelis are "innocent."

Also last week, the Times acknowledged that it mistakenly regurgitated Hamas's claims that Israel bombed a Gazan hospital on Oct. 17. Evidence showed that a Hamas-affiliated terrorist group was likely responsible for the attack.

"What's going on here" is "pretty simple," journalist Bari Weiss, a former Times opinion editor, wrote in an X thread documenting some of the newspaper's anti-Semitism problems. "This is what happens when a newspaper is overrun by reporters and editors, trained at elite schools, who have embraced a 'decolonial' worldview. Reader, beware."

Update 6:25 p.m.: This piece has been updated for clarity since publication.