Intended for healthcare professionals

News Extra [these Stories Appear Only On The Web]

“Distortion” of passive smoking evidence provokes controversy in Israel

BMJ 2000; 320 doi: (Published 25 March 2000) Cite this as: BMJ 2000;320:826
  1. Judy Siegel-Itzkovich
  1. Jerusalem

    Israel's respected daily newspaper in the Hebrew language, which markets itself as “the newspaper for thinking people,” has published a six page cover story in its magazine supplement dismissing the fact that passive smoking is dangerous to health and praising some of the so-called benefits of active smoking. The article in Ha'aretz, which was largely based on a misrepresentation and misinterpretation of an epidemiological meta-analysis by Copas and Shi in the BMJ (2000;320:417-8), has been roundly denounced by Israeli public health experts and by Israel's health minister, Shlomo Benizri.

    As a result of the article, the health minister called on all Israeli print media, “especially Ha'aretz,” to stop accepting and publishing cigarette advertisements. Currently, the only Israeli publications to adopt such a policy on tobacco are Bamahaneh (the magazine of the Israel Defence Forces) and Yom LeYom (the weekly paper of the ultra-Orthodox Shas party).

    Minister Benizri, a rabbi from the Shas party who—unlike many of his predecessors—adopted a policy aimed at reducing smoking, said that research had found a connection between the amount of tobacco advertising in each paper and the manner and …

    View Full Text

    Log in

    Log in through your institution


    * For online subscription