The titter-tape charade

US Politics
on 21 Comments

The Center for American Progress is obviously reeling from the disgraceful performance on its main stage yesterday, in which its president Neera Tanden kissed up to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with a series of softball questions in an effort to assure the Israel lobby that the Democratic Party is still on its side.

The Center is now trying to cover its behind with a post on its news site, ThinkProgress, factchecking the Prime Minister’s claims: “10 Falsehoods That Netanyahu Told During His Appearance At CAP.” There are five names in the byline, and it’s a very strong post, showing that Netanyahu was lying about settlement growth on his watch, about the Palestinian willingness to negotiate, about his own alleged support for a two-state solution, about Palestinian violence, about Israeli punishment of settler violence.

Remember that Eli Clifton and Ali Gharib got censored for writing this kind of stuff four years ago. Clearly the progressive base has shifted since then, as James North and I pointed out earlier today; many Center for American Progress employees are obviously disturbed by Tanden’s performance.

And now there’s a remix tape of Tanden’s “conversation” from an anonymous site: “Netanyahu Faces Tough ‘Progressive’ Interviewer.” This is delicious, 70 seconds of Neera Tanden tittering as the Prime Minister holds forth.

Rania Khalek tweeted:

An angel made a remix of @neeratanden’s giggling deference to baby killer Netanyahu yesterday

Again, remember that even liberal Zionists have called Netanyahu’s government “fascistic.” That’s who Neera Tanden was laughing up.

She exhibited the opposite of gravitas. Another critic observes that Tanden was giggly and jumpy and squirming around in her seat in the presence of an alpha male, behavior that might be excused if it were a cub reporter interviewing a foreign leader; but Tanden is leading one of America’s most important progressive think tanks, with a $38-million dollar budget. She has an important position in an organization that has real impact on the policies of the world’s military super-power. And progressives need stronger figures to represent us.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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21 Responses

  1. Kathleen
    November 11, 2015, 10:07 pm

    Her questions were weak, her persistent laughing was so annoying, no challenging of Netanyahu, allowing the BB hour or “commercial” for Israel to go on uninterrupted.

    BB did not say anything we have not heard before. Really did seem like a fund raiser for CAP and Israel. Neera’s lip prints all over BB’s ass. Pathetic performance on her part

    • inbound39
      November 12, 2015, 3:03 am

      It is precisely this attitude that is killing American Status around the World. How on earth can a Superpower like America ,with it’s history allow itself to be led by its nose by a War Criminal like Netanyahu. More importantly how can America with its catchcry of Liberty,Freedom and Justice have a ‘Special Relationship’with a proven criminal state like Israel? How can it ,in all good conscience, allow itself to justify selling arms to this type of state knowing they will be primarily be used against Palestinians. Americans need to realise its government is setting its people up as targets.

    • Chu
      November 12, 2015, 1:17 pm

      But she’s chummy with the Clintons – working with them over decades, so no wonder she’s fawning over this guy. Hillary needs money to churn her dishonest campaign machine
      and zionists are rich with cash dollars. Another example of the symbiotic relationship of
      power for money.

      I was thinking it could also be a nervous laugh, as she probably wants to rip his throat out, if she’s really some liberal but resorted to an uncomfortable laugh being the president of CAP.
      At any rate, she didn’t ask any tough questions?

      • Kathleen
        November 12, 2015, 10:33 pm

        Did not challenge inaccurate comments, paragraphs of BB’s. Just let him go on for an hour…a real “commercial” for Israel. As if it was a fund raiser

  2. Zaghlul
    November 11, 2015, 11:39 pm

    What an embarrassing performance.

  3. hophmi
    November 12, 2015, 3:35 am

    “Another critic observes that Tanden was giggly and jumpy and squirming around in her seat in the presence of an alpha male”

    Another misogynistic moment at Mondoweiss.

    • Mooser
      November 12, 2015, 10:26 am

      “Another misogynistic moment at Mondoweiss.”

      “Hophmi” , let me make a suggestion. Replace “another” with “More” (“moment” becomes ‘moments’) and you’ve got a pretty good tongue-twister.

    • Emory Riddle
      November 12, 2015, 10:45 am

      Just like Obama acted in his meeting with a real alpha male, Putin.

      And Tanden was an embarrassment. Even if you try to pretend she wasn’t and that Phil Weiss only attacked her due to his being a misogynist (a transparently false statement).

      Must really be the pits to have to constantly defend the indefensible.

    • oldgeezer
      November 12, 2015, 2:19 pm

      @hophmi

      One minute you complain about women’s attire as immodest and the next you’re the pc police.

      You’re a laugh a minute with your shape shifting values.

      • eljay
        November 12, 2015, 2:51 pm

        || oldgeezer: @hophmi

        One minute you complain about women’s attire as immodest and the next you’re the pc police.

        You’re a laugh a minute with your shape shifting values. ||

        Poor hophmi – he doesn’t know whether he’s coming or going. The only thing he does know for certain is that he luuuuvs Zio-supremacism.

      • Mooser
        November 12, 2015, 3:52 pm

        “he doesn’t know whether he’s coming or going.”

        He says we’re vile and pernicious, but he can’t look away, and he thinks Zionism’s delicious, as he’ll always say. He’s the best you can get? Have you guessed him, yet? He’s the…

  4. Eva Smagacz
    November 12, 2015, 5:42 am

    Compare, contrast and weep:

    Tim Sebastian v Naftali Bennett

  5. Kay24
    November 12, 2015, 7:09 am

    Most probably the zionists did not want a serious interviewer who would have asked the uncomfortable questions, and CAP decided to give it to this simpering, unprofessional woman, who obviously had no intentions of holding this man’s feet to the fire. Clinton obviously has chosen the perfect kisser upper, who will keep the zionists happy with no accountability for whatever happens in apartheid land. On the other hand, no one in the MSM asks the tough questions either, or challenges the lies spewed by this man. At least in the UK there are a few wonderful professionals who might do so, but not here.

  6. Ossinev
    November 12, 2015, 7:36 am

    @eva “Compare contrast and weep ” I managed to last through the whole show and sorry I didn`t weep but I did laugh.. He looked like a Beitar thug ( which he basically is under the cute kippah ) but obviously had the fluent English and the fluent Hasbara to make a show of it. Particularly impressed by his description of the “Land of Creation ” as “a beautiful example of a lighthouse in a storm “. He or one of his Hasbara clerks must have spent hours on that one before coming up with the final version – haven`t come across it before. Good that he got the bit in about the nasty Romans – didn`t they accuse the Jews of being ugly terrorists , drive them out of Israel and demolish their ugly homes ? No he didn`t go into detail on that one but he managed to clarify I think that the basic overiding law governing the “beautiful country ” of Israel was not the 1948 Declaration of Independence , not Israeli High Court rulings , not International Laws or conventions – yes you have guessed correctly it is the beautiful Bible which at least puts Israel on a par with beautiful Sharia states.

    He did wax lyrical about the healthy state of the beautiful Israeli economy ( not sure whether the beauty comes with or without the 3 billion dollars a year from the US ) , the beautiful contribution which Israel makes to all sorts of indispensible beautiful world technology but he did miss the opportunity to mention the beautiful cherry tomato.

    So basically his message was Israel = beauty. Arab muslims = ugly terror . BDS = suicide for the West as we would no longer be able to function without beautiful Jewish Israeli intel chips. Other ministers with ugly contradictory views = either they didn`t say what Tim was reporting them as having said or they were ugly idiots.

    Basically everything was light and beauty and Israel although not perfect was still a stunning beauty.

    March on then into the future then in step with the beautiful Fatherland. Ein volk / ein Judea

    BTW Isn`t Naftali a beautiful girl`s name ?

  7. lysias
    November 12, 2015, 10:32 am

    In attempting to explain the Democrats’ smooching of Netanyahu, the Washington Post makes unconvincing arguments about demography and says nothing about political donations: In meeting with Netanyahu, Obama has foreign and domestic concerns:

    President Obama met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu this week with an eye on two fronts: the chaotic Middle East and the domestic political campaign, where Democrats are eager to make sure that support for Israel does not become a partisan issue in 2016.

    Both categories of concern point toward a more pragmatic and realistic approach to U.S.-Israel relations for Obama that could reassure a key ally in an unstable region and soothe uneasy Democrats who backed the Iran nuclear deal. The new calibration would deprive Republicans who opposed the deal of political fodder they can use against Democrats.

    “Most Democratic members of Congress are and will be relieved if tension between the president and prime minister is relaxed,” said Robert Wexler, a former Democratic congressman from Florida who is now president of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace. “There is no Democratic member of Congress who benefits from tension in the American-Israeli relationship.”

    • Mooser
      November 12, 2015, 11:00 am

      Would the Washington Post cover for a Democratic administration, as they do in the article you quote, on any other subject?

  8. Henry Norr
    November 12, 2015, 1:23 pm

    Why does anyone call the Center for American Progress “progressive”? Yes, there seem to be some genuinely progressive people among the staff, but overall, it’s been a vehicle for the Clintons and their “centrist” warmongering ever since they created it!

    • Chu
      November 12, 2015, 2:32 pm

      From what I read, CAP is Clinton/Soros production but doesn’t disclose all of it’s sources for capitol. I wonder if these past incident of supposed ‘anti-semitism’ have brought CAP under the microscope of the Lobby.

      1. In 2011, “(Ben) Smith quoted a CAP analyst writing at a ThinkProgress sub-site, Middle East Progress, comparing Israel’s Gaza policy to “segregation in the American south.” Unnamed ThinkProgress officials were reported as saying that the Center’s goal was to open political space to President Obama’s left”

      2. “The Anti-Defamation League (ADL)… also objected to the appropriateness of some ThinkProgress staffers’ comments. It warned against characterizing Americans who supported closer alignment with Israel as “Israel-Firsters.”

      https://www.activistfacts.com/organizations/528-center-for-american-progress/

  9. Boo
    November 12, 2015, 2:52 pm

    Out of deference to those who allege misogynistic bias — and with a nod toward accuracy — I wouldn’t characterize that laughter as either “giggling” or “tittering”. I’ve heard less obnoxious crows. It was irritating, off-putting, unprofessional and frankly bordered on bizarre. I’m glad to find out that others also found it so.

  10. Salander2000
    November 12, 2015, 8:07 pm

    Neera Tanden responded not as a professional journalist but as a star-struck jackass.
    But in reality, Tanden and those kissing up to Clinton, Inc and AIPAC in this organization are more interested in securing positions in a possible Clinton administration than delving into the real concerns about Netanyahu‘s fascism, racism and murderous tenure in office.
    The Center for American Progress and its web affiliate ThinkProgress( misnomers for their slavish devotion to Clinton, Inc and AIPAC) have positioned themselves as having as little moral compass as Netanyahu.

  11. Pixel
    November 12, 2015, 10:11 pm

    I don’t think she titters or giggles.

    It’s a fake, forced laugh.

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