Guardian list omits Israeli Nobel winners
COMPLAINTS TO the Guardian newspaper over an incomplete list of Nobel Peace Prize winners led to a hasty amendment on the paper’s website last week.
The incomplete list remained on the website for four hours, despite comments posted below it which pointed out the omissions of Yitzak Rabin, Menachem Begin and Shimon Peres.
I mmediately f o l l o wi n g t h e announcement of President Barack Obama’s award of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, Guardian news editor Simon Rogers posted what he claimed was “every peace prize winner ever”, stating that the information came from the website Nobelprize.org
But the Guardian’s list omitted Israeli winners Shimon Peres, Yitzhak Rabin and Menachem Begin.
Menachem Begin, the sixth Prime Minister of Israel, jointly won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1978 for signing a peace treaty with President Anwar Sadat of Egypt. Only Sadat was listed by the Guardian.
The paper committed the same error by omitting Israeli leaders Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin, who won the peace prize jointly with Yasir Arafat in 1994.
Again, Arafat was listed as a winner by the Guardian but both Peres and Rabin were omitted.
Dr Shimon Samuels, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s Director for International Relations, wrote to Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger equating the omission with the Nazis’ deligitimisation of Jews.
He wrote: “If a policy of excluding Israeli Nobel laureates should recur, perhaps in the fields of medicine or other sciences, the Guardian must draw the natural conclusion by recommending that its staff and readership deny themselves the research benefits of those scholars.”
In response to the complaints, a Guardian spokeswoman said: “The aim of the Guardian Data Blog is to give guardian. co.uk users access to datasets from around the world on a wide variety of topics.
“For the Nobel Peace Prize winners list, we used data from Nobelprize.org. However, there was a technical issue during the data transfer from the site, which meant that many of the names of the joint winners of the Nobel Peace Prize were accidentally omitted, although the country of origin of the winners was not. This has now been corrected.”
In fact, the three Israeli joint winners of the Nobel prize were the only joint names omitted.
Part of the incomplete list