‘Chicago Tribune’ runs Khalidi piece faulting Rep Jackson for going on ‘magical mystery tour’ to Israel

on 50 Comments

What is not as important as Rashid Khalidi’s restrained, but nonetheless perceptive critique of Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.’s trip to Israel, courtesy of AIPAC, is the fact that the Chicago Tribune elected to run it. Jackson Jr. has been one of the most unabashed supporters of Israel within the Congressional Black Caucus, at one point even disassociating himself from his father’s criticism of Israeli policies. Given the mood of the times and the serious economic problems facing the voters in his district, however, he may now begin to have second thoughts about where his priorities should be. Khalidi:

Jackson also approvingly quoted Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who has called for the forcible transfer of Israel’s Palestinian citizens and whose stances have regularly been criticized internationally for their thinly veiled bigotry. The day that a prominent African-American and the son of a civil rights icon embraces a man like Lieberman for the sole purpose of greasing wheels in Washington is a sad one for anyone who cares about equality and justice.

Jackson’s submission to the lobby of a foreign state is a tragic illustration of the abdication of progressives and others in the United States over the rights of Palestinians. Such behavior is one of the reasons Israel has been able to dominate Palestinians for decades with little protest from the United States.

It is no wonder then, that peace and security for all in the region is still so elusive.

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50 Responses

  1. mudder
    August 31, 2011, 10:00 am

    I’m impressed that Khalidi was able to slip the A-word into the Tribune : “It’s as if Jackson thinks that none of the goals and principles of the civil rights or anti-apartheid movements should apply to Israel…”

  2. seafoid
    August 31, 2011, 10:11 am

    Jackson jr is a neocon like the rest of the clowns who visit Israel.
    Imagine if Bull Connor had openly discussed shipping all of Alabama’s black population to Mexico. The problem for Israel is that it has no equivalent of the US North where racism meets logic.

    • Jeffrey Blankfort
      August 31, 2011, 7:43 pm

      Jackson Jr. is not a neo-con. He is what the Black Panthers used to refer to as a “bootlicker” and he does what he does because he knows that AIPAC will protect his seat in the House. Ironically, it was once held by Gus Savage, from 1981 to 1993, who was among the most outspoken critics of Israel and defenders of the Palestinians ever to sit in Congress.

      As such, he became the target of AIPAC and the entire Zionist establishment, including his own party. Wealthy and no so wealthy supporters of Israel donated to his Democratic primary challenger, Mel Reynolds, an earlier version of Jackson Jr, and the Democrats obligingly redrew his predominantly black district, moving out black voters and replacing them with a significant percentage of white voters which proved to be decisive in the 1992 elections.

      Savage had enraged the Zionist establishment by reading out the names of out of state Jewish donors to Reynolds’s campaign during one of his public appearances. This led the Washington Jewish Week to label him “Savage Savage” in a headline over an editorial comment accusing the congressman of antisemitism. The racism inherent in the paper’s own headline went unnoticed.

      Reynolds, who had lost on two previous efforts to unseat Savage, had a short career in the House, being sentenced in Aug. 1995 to a five-year jail term for having sex with a 16-year old campaign worker.

  3. Taxi
    August 31, 2011, 10:32 am

    “The day that a prominent African-American and the son of a civil rights icon embraces a man like Lieberman for the sole purpose of greasing wheels in Washington is a sad one for anyone who cares about equality and justice.”

    Whoa! Truthy smack-down!!

    • GalenSword
      August 31, 2011, 11:19 am

      Just to be clear, Lieberman is the Ernst Röhm of modern Zionism. Rep. Allen West likes to babble nonsense about the Nazi period. Would Allen even know who Röhm was?

      • piotr
        August 31, 2011, 6:12 pm

        Can you elaborate?

        Also, if we want to connect Zionism with fascism, we may stick to more proven analogies and connections. Jabotinsky convinced Mussolini to allow Betar (? check) youth camps in Italy. By the way of contrast, attempts to collaborate with Nazi Germany against the British in Palestine and Middle East in general were unsuccessful.

      • MRW
        August 31, 2011, 9:39 pm

        Would Allen even know who Röhm was?

        No. But I doubt he knew who Chamberlain was. He had that handed to him in Israel.

  4. Opti
    August 31, 2011, 11:34 am

    “[On my committee, I asked Hilary Clinton to] help explain to the American people why the 1.5% of the federal budget that is spent on foreign aid is so important.” — Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. on his facebook account picture with Clinton.

    I guess AIPAC did the explaining…

  5. annie
    August 31, 2011, 12:06 pm

    i wonder if jeremy ben ami is going to accuse Rashid Khalidi of being a racist.

  6. Richard Witty
    August 31, 2011, 12:52 pm

    What does Khalidi propose?

    • annie
      August 31, 2011, 12:55 pm

      have you read the article?

      • Chaos4700
        August 31, 2011, 8:43 pm

        Of course Witty didn’t read the article! What do expect from him, intellectualism instead of petty innuendo? Please.

    • Donald
      August 31, 2011, 1:02 pm

      What does that have to do with it? The subject here is AIPAC and its stranglehold on US policy towards Israel–Jackson’s trip is just the latest example. A sincere two-stater should be upset when a congressman goes to Israel on an AIPAC funded trip and comes back spouting half-truths and lies about the conflict. You are not. You seem constantly upset by what “dissent” says in criticism of Israel and never upset by AIPAC’s influence, which is an obstacle even to the two state solution you claim to favor. Why is that?

    • Cliff
      August 31, 2011, 2:43 pm

      Dick Witty, stop hijacking threads you con-artist.

      Go read jdledell’s post and see what a ‘liberal’ Zionist is, as liberal as is possible within the Zionist framework.

      He puts you to shame.

      • Richard Witty
        August 31, 2011, 3:18 pm

        Proposing is the intelligent person’s next step.

        Proposals can be debated by those with differing original perspectives and come to common cause, motivation to actually accomplish something.

        Condemnations can only divide.

        The way to confront him is to ask him, “How did you come to conclude what you now conclude?”

        • NorthOfFortyNine
          August 31, 2011, 3:45 pm

          >> Condemnations can only divide.

          Yet you “condemn” Hamas all the time — why so divisive, Richard?

        • Shingo
          August 31, 2011, 4:02 pm

          Witty also condems BDS.

          Also very decisive.

        • Richard Witty
          August 31, 2011, 4:12 pm

          You think I condemn only?

          All of my comments about Hamas are in the context of the progress that they stop, of actions, of policies.

          I don’t call them evil demons. You must be confusing me with someone else. I comment on their actions, policies and practices.

          It would be wonderful if others did as well.

        • Exiled At Home
          August 31, 2011, 4:58 pm

          Mr. Witty,

          I don’t call them evil demons.

          If that is the sole measure of what constitutes condemnation, then Mr. Khalidi is not condemning Rep. Jackson, Jr, either.

          His critique about Mr. Jackson is in the context of the progress for Palestinian equality that he stops, of his actions and words, of his views.

          Mr. Khalidi’s critique is no more a condemnation of Mr. Jackson than is your decision to not call Hamas “evil demons.”

          Am I wrong?

        • Richard Witty
          August 31, 2011, 5:26 pm

          I was answering Northoffortynine’s comment.

          He doesn’t distinguish between demonizing persons and criticizing actions and policies, and in context.

        • Chaos4700
          August 31, 2011, 8:43 pm

          Neither do you, Witty. You still claim Furkan Dogan’s murder was justified.

        • MRW
          August 31, 2011, 9:40 pm

          Our own private Don Quixote.

        • Donald
          August 31, 2011, 10:22 pm

          “Condemnations can only divide.

          The way to confront him is to ask him, “How did you come to conclude what you now conclude?””

          Not everyone has to march in lockstep with you Richard. You are very intolerant of people who issue criticisms of Israel or the Israel lobby or politicians who pander to them. You can see why Khalidi concludes what he does about Jackson because he explained it in the column, but you don’t care.

        • Richard Witty
          August 31, 2011, 11:35 pm

          They probably know each other, Khalidi and Jackson Jr.

          I would expect then that Jackson has heard Khalidi’s arguments.

          I know that to your mind the funding of the trip and offering some kind of tour indicates a bias. I would hope that you would then not prohibit politicians from accepting funded transit to Palestinian refugee camps.

          I was offended by Blankfurt’s remark calling Jackson a “bootlicker”.

          There are too many people that are “officially” hated by the far left and left/right.

          Its a bad approach, a uniquely anti-democratic one, in the effort to stifle discussion.

          That’s what I mean by “condemnation”/character defamation, as distinct from “criticism” of reasoning and conclusions.

        • annie
          September 1, 2011, 12:05 am

          “officially” hated

          yawn, you’re such a tool. for a ‘peace guy’ you’re sure into the most extreme inflammatory accusation aren’t you?

        • Chaos4700
          September 1, 2011, 12:08 am

          They probably know each other, Khalidi and Jackson Jr.’

          “Probably?” Yeah, that doesn’t sound like pure, rampant speculation. And you have no right to lecture people on hate, Witty, considering your wholehearted endorsement of the use of military force on civilians (children among them) in Gaza.

          You know what’s anti-democratic, Witty? Running Palestinians out of their homes, turning the land over to Jewish immigrants, and then insisting that those Jewish immigrants MUST have their (nonexistent and totally illegal) “property rights” honored. What’s anti-democratic is firing journalists who speak out against violence, meanwhile retaining journalists who call for more bloodshed.

          But obviously none of the finer points of democracy actually concern you, huh?

        • Shingo
          September 1, 2011, 12:14 am

          So now, according to Witty, it’s undemocratic to hate.

        • Shingo
          September 1, 2011, 12:31 am

          I can’t wait for the “igonore this person” button to appear.

          It’s like waiting for christmas and I am dying to test it out – but only once.

        • MRW
          September 1, 2011, 4:53 am


          You second-guess with abandon, THEN form conclusions based on your second-guessing, passed off as fact instead of in-head conjecture. . .then turn around and get offended by the consequences of your conjectures.

          Lucky for you that birthin’ babies is easier.

  7. annie
    August 31, 2011, 1:01 pm

    here’s another chicagotribune.com link that leads to comment section if anyone would like to contribute or read the comments.

  8. Taxi
    August 31, 2011, 1:03 pm

    LOL there’s alotta angry zionists in the comments section to the Tribune article!

    It’s so coooool how the pack ‘o wolves are cottom-mouthed with desperation.

    Bravo Chicago Trib – even though your zionist commentators suck eggs and throw their weight around like they OWN YOU just cuz they’re all cousins or wannabe cousins of Rahm Emanuel.

    I can’t help it but it really really really pleases me to see them zionists get so flaming mad at the truth and on public forums – the truth they’ve been successful at suppressing for decades is now alas NO MORE!

    LOL the truth now is in BLACK AND WHITE and the internet keeps it in eternal perpetuity. GONE are the days of suppressed whispers. Aipac is gradually being OUTED!

    Th Tribune editors got their finger on the pulse of Black America alright: they know that the ‘israel debate’ in Black America is long over-due and MUST BEGIN NOW as a lead up to the 2012 elections. There are now too many African-American Chicagoan intellectuals wanting to discuss in public (not just around their elite dinner tables) Natanyahu’s ongoing public disrespect and humiliation of Obama. These writers and thinkers they’re itching to analyze in public, to their inner and outer communities, what’s behind congress’ numerous standing ovations and prostrations to the foreigner Natanyahu, while simultaneously dissing and undermining Obama, their historic President. Khalidi’s article sure opens the door to the subject of Obama and Aipac.

    Well who else to publicly challenge Aipac and it’s cronies for the next election but the Chicago intelligentsia? They sure damn well know who snipped at Obama’s balls since his Cairo Speech – and they wanna talk about it.

    This topic’s out now and it sure looks like it’s got long-long legs.

    • annie
      August 31, 2011, 1:20 pm

      Th Tribune editors got their finger on the pulse of Black America alright: they know that the ‘israel debate’ in Black America is long over-due and MUST BEGIN NOW as a lead up to the 2012 elections.

      more more more!

    • MRW
      August 31, 2011, 9:57 pm

      Taxi, you are dead on the money. This is a seething issue in the black community, and their silence does not indicate unawareness. Or acceptance.

      This is hushed talk entre-nous. Blacks may not have great percentages in the most populous states, but their numbers are high in states where their little votey-wotey (as some sneer at it) can do significant damage.

      I have a few black acquaintances I see at the bar who are deeply involved in local politics. We started talking just before Obama announced his candidacy in the fall of 2006. I said he was going to run, and he was going to win it; they said no chance, he couldn’t win. Since then we’ve come to trust each other’s perceptions about things hiding in the cracks, and our conversations are frank (which I love). I’ve had this discussion with them. Taxi says it true and clear: “The Tribune editors got their finger on the pulse of Black America alright”.

  9. seafoid
    August 31, 2011, 5:37 pm

    This video is class

    Shema Israel
    The cult of Zionism

    I can’t help thinking the problem of Israel that comes after the wanton cruelty and ignorance is Hebrew. I’m guessing most US Jews have no idea what this song means. And now they are turning away from Israel. And soon there won’t be any political cover.

    And the Zionists totally f@@@ed everything up thinking that g-d was with them in June 1967. The settlements , and the pointlessness of it all.
    I suppose it will all boil down to their projections being wrong.

    But what a song.

  10. Real Jew
    August 31, 2011, 7:45 pm

    What does it say about our (American) media when we are overly grateful about one shitty news article that dares to speak the truth. Zionists have completely hijacked our media, spend billions of dollars on Hasbara, effectively silences any opposing voices, all for the sole purpose of regergitating pro Israel propaganda. Yet despite their thuggish efforts to fool the world, Israel’s image and international standing has never been worst. Outstanding!

    • GuiltyFeat
      September 1, 2011, 6:07 am

      “spend billions of dollars on Hasbara”

      Er… evidence, please.

      “effectively silences any opposing voices”… except yours of course. You must be very brave.

      • Taxi
        September 1, 2011, 9:03 am

        Er…. gf, er… YOU are the evidence – though I know your rates are cheap.

        • GuiltyFeat
          September 1, 2011, 9:30 am

          Hilarious response, Taxi.

          Do you also claim that Israel is spending “billions of dollars” on hasbara like this halfwit?

        • Taxi
          September 1, 2011, 10:16 am

          Well let’s see er… er… gf… multiply your bargain-bin rates by 4.3 million then multiply that by 768 (that’s 64 years in month-count) then add to that the cost of the WHOLE EXISTENCE of the hasbara state of israel (from lightbulb to nuclear bomb) and you should have you there just some of the bullshit request for “evidence” that quarterwits like you keep whining about.

          How about I ask YOU for contrary “evidence” – how ’bout you open up for us the hasbara account books – go ahead YOU show us how LITTLE they spend – I’m sure you’re gonna say in your denialist snooty voice “pennies per annum that’s all we zionists spend on PR”. Yeah right on the funny money you always are gf!

          I await with glee Real Jew’s response to your foolish-foolish choice of argument.

          By the way, do tell us: does the word ‘Real’ in Real Jew’s name bother you THAT much?

        • GuiltyFeat
          September 1, 2011, 10:47 am

          Congratulations Taxi. You have won today’s prize for defending the indefensibly moronic. You must be very proud.

          As for “evidence”, as any fule kno, the burden of proof is on the the person making a claim not the person querying its veracity.

        • Taxi
          September 1, 2011, 11:37 am

          Er… er… er gf deary dear, by your own argument then: prove to us YOUR claim that hasbara DOES NOT SPEND BILLIONS ON BRAND ISRAEL – where’s YOUR proof buster?!!! You think two can’t play your “moronic” snooty “claim” game?

          Any prize coming from colonialist be-essers like you would definitely end up being used for toilet paper in my house (which is NOT stolen by the way, neither is the water in it’s cistern).

          Give us the evidence to YOUR claim, prove us all “moronic” – show us what a superior Einstein you are.

        • Chaos4700
          September 1, 2011, 7:05 pm

          Oh just ignore GF, Taxi. We all know what a big phony he is at this point. He was born in the UK, he defended SodaStream while pretending to oppose business practices the occupied territories and he makes up bullshit about how he opposes the very occupation that puts water in his glass and bread on his table since he CHOSE to move to Israel.

        • Taxi
          September 1, 2011, 7:53 pm

          Hey Chaos, how are you my old Memory Alpha? You know something, sometimes I wish we lived in the same city. What fun-fun-fun that would be!

          Also, really, no sweating here anything gf has to say – LOL who cares ?!

      • Chaos4700
        September 1, 2011, 9:29 am

        AIPAC MEMRI GIYUS ADL Hillel Birthright… I can get a comprehensive list if you give me some more time.

        • DBG
          September 1, 2011, 10:02 am

          I’d love to see your ‘comprehensive list’ Hillel? you are a student (still) why don’t you go to a Hillel service and tell me how it is a bastion for ‘Hasbara’

        • annie
          September 1, 2011, 10:36 am

          why don’t you go to a Hillel service and tell me how it is a bastion for ‘Hasbara’

          have you read (BUSINESS WIRE) — –Initiative Opposes a Unilaterally Declared Palestinian State ? this is a market watch link. i ran into this the other day and googled it. it’s only being reported in business wire for some reason.

          “Real Partners. Real Peace.” Initiative Launches on Over 100 College Campuses Across the Country
          Gives Voice to the Campus Community that Wants Israelis and Palestinians to Directly Negotiate to Bring an End to the Conflict

          WASHINGTON, D.C., Aug 30, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) — –Initiative Opposes a Unilaterally Declared Palestinian State

          –Encourages Palestinian Authority to Act Responsibly

          A new initiative has been launched to give voice to the campus community concerned about the future of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. The “Real Partners. Real Peace.” Initiative (RP2) calls for an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through direct negotiations between responsible partners. RP2 aims to make an impact on the campus community by engaging students, campus professionals, faculty, administration, and others through events, programs and other efforts. The most pressing concern of RP2 is the Palestinian push for a unilateral declaration of statehood at the United Nations (UN) in mid-September. RP2 believes the Palestinian decision to go to the UN will not serve to advance the peace process and will significantly undermine prospects for meaningful progress through direct negotiations. RP2 gives voice to the campus community who say that the time is now for constructive academic discussions on the realities and challenges of the peace process.

          and then there the little tent project someone linked to the other day. google reut ‘red lines’ and big tent’ and you can read more about it. a little birdie told me hillel will be involved with these projects.

      • Donald
        September 1, 2011, 9:39 am

        GF, I don’t know about the billions of dollars, but it’s pretty obvious when nearly everyone in Congress wildly applauds that idiot Netanyahu that the Lobby is doing a pretty good job suppressing criticism at that level. You know, the level where people decide where the tax dollars are going to be spent. And the mainstream press is regularly slanted towards the pro-Israel position. It’s sort of a given that Haaretz can write things that would never appear in the NYT when it comes to Israeli crimes or even the influence of the Lobby on US politics.

        I agree, though, that people can mouth off about Israel on the internet without fear of being shot or sent to prison. Boy that makes me feel better.

  11. lobewyper
    August 31, 2011, 9:23 pm

    I am thrilled and delighted by the Trib’s publishing of this piece. In fact, I still can hardly believe it. The self-censorship of the US media is beginning to spring serious leaks!

  12. lobewyper
    August 31, 2011, 9:26 pm

    Richard wrote:

    “Condemnations can only divide.”

    Yes, but appparently, only when they are directed at the Israelis…

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