This is delicious. The New York Times is changing. Everyone smells the change in the wind. The landmark Sarah Schulman pinkwashing piece, the references to the Occupation... It looks like Jill Abramson is having a remarkable, quiet effect on the gray lady's coverage of the issue at the heart of Middle Eastern foreign policy (and blue state media social culture).
JJ Goldberg at the Forward has, as they say in Briddish, his knickers in a twist over the shift: "'Pinkwash'? 'Occupation'? What's Up at NYT Op-Ed?" Goldberg describes the great pinkwashing op-ed as "astoundingly hostile." And questions a headline on Gershom Gorenberg's piece in yesterday's Times as "seriously bad:" "Israel’s Other Occupation."
Hey, the wind has shifted. Be there or be square. The Schulman understanding of the occupation and the hasbara that rationalizes it is gaining traction across the American left. Let's have a debate! Goldberg is on the same side as David Harris of the American Jewish Committee, Mr Israel lobby, whom he quotes:
David Harris of the American Jewish Committee deconstructed the piece in a smart blog post earlier in the week, arguing that the piece itself is too “preposterous” to get excited about but the Times’ decision to publish it—out of the hundreds of submissions it gets every day—suggests something disturbing is going on at the Times.... [Harris writes,]
"Schulman, of course, is entitled to her views, however outlandish they may be.
"But why the Times opted to publish them is another matter entirely. The op-ed page isn’t exactly wide open to just anyone. Other than the regular columnists, available space for would-be contributors is at quite a premium.
"What prompted this publishing decision? Beats me."
I don’t usually buy into Times-as-anti-Israel blather, but the “Pinkwashing” piece was beyond inexplicable and the headline on Gershom’s piece [Goldberg refers to Gershom Gorenberg by first name] is the second clunker in less than a week. Is the Times’ new op-ed editor, a former fashion and culture maven, that dim on Middle East politics? Does she not read her page’s headlines? Is she trying to make trouble for her bosses? Or is this what she thinks?
Wait-- Is she trying to make trouble for her bosses? Explain, what does that mean?
Update. Writes a friend: Wait a second. When was the last time the NYT ran a Palestinian opinion? ...and it's not that long since the Goldstone piece. I hope you're right, but I hope Harris doesn't lastingly frame the issue.