An Atlantic Conversation About A Jerusalem Post Reporter

So it seems I’ve been quoted in an Atlantic piece about Jerusalem Post reporter Sharon Udasin’s ghoulish search for stressed pets in Tel Aviv as children literally die by the dozen in Gaza. (Apparently pet owners in Gaza are also welcome to contact her but they seem to be a little busy at the moment).

I can’t say I agree with the Atlantic’s take – “Animal stories are part of her beat and this particular story also ties into the biggest story in her country right now” – and in fact I’ve said as much to its author Dashiell Bennett. Here’s my response below.

Hi Dashiell,

Rory MacKinnon here – I’m a reporter for London’s Morning Star whose tweet you quoted in your piece. I hope you don’t mind finding space somewhere for my follow-up comment.

The outrage that I felt for both my profession and the commonality of mankind was that Ms Udasin bills herself as the Post’s “environment, infrastructure and agriculture reporter”.

As I made very clear to Ms Udasin today, there are any number of vital stories she could address in her beat, such as whether the strikes on farmland in Gaza and disruption to shipping will affect the Palestinians’ food supply or the implications of Gilad Sharon’s calls in her own paper yesterday to cut access to electricity, fuel and water across the entire strip.

I realise the ‘How Is Your Dog Today’ angle was probably not her own idea, but when innocents are dying in their dozens any self-respecting journalist – any self-respecting human being – should refuse an assignment like that immediately, not double down when it’s treated with the ridicule it deserves.

You can find my full dialogue with Ms Udasin on my website,

You’re very welcome of course to link it in your article as well.


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