NEW YORK — Denver billionaire Philip Anschutz’s Clarity Media Group, which owns the San Francisco Examiner and plans to launch the Washington Examiner on Tuesday, has pulled an advertisement promoting the two papers following criticism that the ad demonized Palestinian children, The Denver Post reported Saturday.
The advertisement in the Jan. 24 edition of the media trade publication MediaWeek, a sister publication of Editor & Publisher, reportedly showed a girl playing a violin on one side and a Palestinian girl carrying an assault rifle on the other, the Post reported. Superimposed over the two pictures were the words “PTA to PLO.”
The ad, which was meant to attract advertisers, went on to say: “No local newspaper has ever delivered news of this scope.”
The Electronic Intifada, a not-for-profit website providing news and information from a Palestinian perspective, asked its readers to contact Examiner vice president of advertising Mark Wurzer and San Francisco Examiner managing editor Jim Pimentel to request that they pull the ad, according to the Post.
“The implication is clear: the girl with the rifle is supposed to represent a Palestinian girl and embody what the PLO stands for,” the group said on its website.
Clarity reportedly pulled the ad on Thursday, said Ali AbuNimah, co-founder of Chicago-based Electronic Intifada. San Francisco Examiner publisher Scott McKibben apologized for the ad.
“It has been brought to our attention that a recent advertisement published in MediaWeek promoting The Examiner has caused concernï¿½to readers,ï¿½ the Post quoted McKibben saying. ï¿½On behalf of Clarity Media Group and The Examiner in Washington and San Francisco, we sincerely apologize.”
Joe Strupp is a senior editor at Editor & Publisher.