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May 08, 2005

Guardian Editor Lauds Rachel Corrie

A play based on the writings of ISM activist Rachel Corrie and written by an editor at the British Guardian newspaper is currently running at a London theater. The play shows the Middle East conflict through Corrie's eyes, engendering — or reinforcing — hostile British attitudes towards Israel, and spreading the message of a young girl who hadn't grown out of seeing things as black and white, hero vs. villain.

A Jerusalem Post review of the play states:

My Name Is Rachel Corrie, written by Guardian Weekend magazine editor Katharine Viner (who herself is Jewish) and actor/editor Alan Rickman, is based on Corrie's diary and e-mail messages ...

... not a single reference is made to the traumas suffered throughout the four-and-a-half-year terror campaign against the Israeli population.

Robin Stamler, who has recently completed a PhD at Birckbeck College and is a member of the Academic Friends of Israel group, told The Jerusalem Post that the play is being used by leaders of Britain's media who are hostile to Israel as a vehicle to delegitimize the country.

"The play openly serves to promote an anti-Israel narrative that is already entrenched in important parts of British society," said Stamler, adding: "This is a play written by a Guardian editor, heavily promoted by that newspaper, produced by one of the top British actors, and staged at the leading venue for political theater. Pro-Israel Jews won't find a comfortable home in this section of British society, and it is a section with great influence and power."

Surely, the Guardian editor understands the differences between her role as writer of an anti-Israeli play and her role at a respected newspaper?

Maybe not. She herself has asserted:


As the process went on, the difference between my usual job, journalism, and theatre, became obvious: stagecraft is what makes theatre what it is, and there was no point creating scenes that read well on the page if the actor playing Rachel, Megan Dodds, could not perform them.

So the only difference, according to Viner (pictured above), is that the each medium has different limitations. Apparently the goal of a journalist and a playwright is the same — demonizing Israel.

Posted by GI at May 8, 2005 11:10 AM