Israeli News Channel Shaken Up Following Clash With U.S. Billionaire

Three of Channel 10 news' top officials have resigned following the channel's decision to air an apology over a profile piece on Netanyahu ally, newspaper owner Sheldon Adelson.

In the wake of turbulent social unrest that has been sweeping across Israel for over a month over the disproportionate influence of Israeli tycoons in the country's economy, a new conflict is apparently emerging, this time from within the Israeli media.

A profile piece aired by Channel 10 news company, and concerning American casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, both repotedly angered the billionaire, as well caused the subsequent protest resignations of three top Channel 10 officials over Adelson's demand that the news channel apologize for the piece.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with Sheldon Adelson
Tess Scheflan

The segment which caused the rift between Anderson, a close ally of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and owner of the Israeli daily Israel Hayom, and Channel 10 was a 20-minute profile piece aired by the news outlet's weekend news show "HaShavua," and which dealt with his many businesses, the manner in which he reportedly manages them, his contacts, and his familial relations.

Sources within Channel 10 claimed that Adelson was especially put off by two specific moments in the piece, resulting in what Channel 10 sources described as the blunt interference of a shareholder in the outlet's news content.

During the profile piece's weeks-long preparation, Adelson's attorney warned Channel 10 officials against airing it, a warning which, a few months following the piece's publication, into a threat to sue the news channel.

That threat spurned Channel 10 into negotiations with the billionaire's representatives, talks which culminated with an agreement to air an apology on the show "HaShavua" show, one reportedly drafted by Adelson himself.

Channel 10's news chief, Reudor Benziman reportedly resisted the move, subsequently resigning earlier this week over the channel's decision to air the apology. He was later joined by "HaShavua" editor Ruthie Yovel.

However, the latest development in the ongoing conflict was the on-air resignation of the show's presenter, Guy Zohar, who announced that he would not be returning to "HaShavua" just minutes after Adelson's requested apology was finally aired.