The power of the Israel lobby is in the news. AIPAC overplayed its hand with anti-boycott legislation that Democrats are stepping away from. While Sheldon Adelson is trying to get Trump’s National Security Adviser fired for being insufficiently supportive of Israel. We have a long way before the lobby is openly addressed, though.
Category Archives: Media
In town hall at a Portland high school, Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden is put on the defensive by questions and heckling over his support for Anti-Israel Boycott Act, and says law is necessary because boycott movement has “grown” and the law could apply to boycotts recommended by the United Nations. The pushback is further evidence of decreasing support for Israel inside the Democratic Party base.
Israel supporters such as Caroline Glick are demanding that Trump fire national security adviser H.R. McMaster because he has fired pro-Israel analysts and supports the Iran deal and considers Israel an occupying power. But realists are still the adults in the Trump administration.
Defenses of Linda Sarsour, the Palestinian-American activist attacked as an anti-Zionist by the New York Times, are popping up everywhere. Bob Bland, co-organizer with Sarsour of the Women’s March, writes: “As a cis-heterosexual white woman new to feminist activism, I found that there were times in planning the January march that were uncomfortable.” But she says coalitions of the oppressed and marginalized are essential to taking on Trump.
“You know, you look at Israel – Israel has a wall and everyone said do not build a wall, walls do not work,” Trump tells Mexico’s president in bid to convince him to pay for a similar barrier along the U.S.-Mexico border.
In an interview with the conservative National Review, neoconservative Bari Weiss, who works at the New York Times, says that her goal in castigating Palestinian-American Linda Sarsour as a “strident anti-Zionist” is to make the Democratic establishment of Schumer, Gillibrand and Pelosi “disavow” her. Will Weiss succeed? Neocons have long exercised power in the Democratic Party.
Bari Weiss, an opinion editor at the New York Times and longtime pro-Israel advocate, smears Linda Sarsour as a purveyor of “hate” because she is anti-Zionist. Weiss is in a rich tradition of pro-Zionist advocacy at America’s leading newspaper, but Sarsour’s prominence is endangering that entitlement.
In remarks to congressional interns leaked to the press, Middle East envoy Jared Kushner is pessimistic about any peace deal. “Not a whole lot has been accomplished over the last 40 or 50 years we’ve been doing this… There may be no solution,” he says.
In John Lyons’s new memoir, Balcony Over Jerusalem, ex-New York Times Jerusalem bureau chief Jodi Rudoren tells Lyons that Israel’s treatment of Palestinians looks “a lot like apartheid.” The book describes the aggressive attacks Lyons and others suffered at the hands of the Israel lobby, and the Rudoren interview raises the obvious question: why are we learning about Rudoren’s surprising views about Israel and apartheid in an interview with Lyons rather than prominently in the pages of the New York Times, the world’s most influential newspaper? The answer indicates that the lobby’s strategy has been paying handsome dividends.
Times columnist David Brooks says what’s “disturbing” about an interview with President Trump is his confused train of thought: “Spasms about what Napoleon was doing, then we go off to some other issue and some other issue. I thought – and especially compared to the transcripts of Donald Trump 15 years ago, there’s a totally different conversational style, the explanation for which I do not have.”
Jodi Rudoren promoted the Israeli Zionist narrative as bureau chief for the New York Times in Jerusalem. Now she’s the newspaper’s guide in Israel to wealthy visitors for three days during a first-class round the world tour in a private jet next year, 26 days and 9 countries for $135,000.
Veteran Australian journalist John Lyons says that reporters from the New York Times, The Economist, Agence France-Presse, and Reuters told him that they censor themselves in reporting from Israel lest they be “savagely targeted” by Israel. Reuters even has a list of special words that won’t “upset” Israeli authorities, he said. These pressures are levied by Israel’s friends overseas, to the point that they tie up reporters “for months” when they write critical investigations of Israel.
The investigation of Russia’s meddling in U.S. politics dominates the liberal press. Phil Weiss writes that he believes the suspicions about Donald Trump and the Russians, but what stands out to him is that conduct that is Watergate-worthy when it comes to Russia is hunky-dory when it comes to Israel. Just in the last week there have been two other expressions of Israel’s active interests in our politics that the liberal media have failed to say boo about.
The “grip” of AIPAC is so complete that writers who challenge it are smeared as “anti-Semites” and politicians who buck it “see their careers suddenly stalled,” Andrew Sullivan says in denouncing Schumer for leading the charge on the “creeping authoritarianism” of the Israel Anti-Boycott Act before Congress.
“Hitler’s secret weapon was coercing Jews to destroy themselves,” Shmuley Boteach writes, and we might do so again he warns. He says that Jews are now collaborating in the destruction of Israel, and by this he means they support a Palestinian state!
In a book once regarded as heretical among American Jewry, The Tragedy of Zionism, Bernard Avishai explained more than 30 years ago that Zionism evolved from a Histadrut (trade union) movement, to statism that aspired to be Jewish and democratic, and from this statism to a new unabashedly undemocratic Zionism.
Don’t give the Trump administration any power to “lock them up,” J Street warns Congress about new “Israel Anti-Boycott Act,” while the ACLU warns that “simply requesting information about such boycotts” could expose a person to penalties.
Glenn Greenwald and Ryan Grim’s report at the Intercept on new legislation in the Congress that would criminalize support for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS). Yes, criminalize. The bill is such a crude example of overreach by the Israel lobby that it is sure to backfire on its supporters as Greenwald and Grim’s report ricochets around the Democratic Party
June 8 marked the 50th anniversary of the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty, killing 34 American sailors. The case remains a mystery that is the subject of a Haaretz investigation in Israel and a new book, but U.S. media won’t even address the controversy, leaving the case entirely to Letters to the Editor.
Netanyahu’s culture minister Miri Regev boycotts the work of Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish and wears a dress celebrating Israeli colonization. But David Grossman will join a delegation with her in New York later this month, as the Israeli government sponsors a production of a play based on his novel.
The Tour de France is exploiting horrific crashes in this year’s race for publicity and profits, and when top rider Dan Martin called the Tour for its conduct, NBC commentators Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen say the riders are to blame for taking risks. This is self-serving BS and sports fans need to call NBC on it.
In the New York Times, Nikil Saval treats the hostility leftwingers feel towards centrist liberals as unfair. He mentions some past issues, like Vietnam, but he doesn’t dare mention Iraq or Libya or Israel, and tie them together into the critique that leftwingers justifiably have today of liberal interventionism and liberal hypocrisy on war and peace issues.
In a strong editorial, the LA Times says that Israel’s “noxious” law against admitting boycott supporters will not stop the country’s “delegitimization,” and that US states are also wrong to try and legislate against Boycott, Divestment Sanctions (BDS), because it’s a “classic tool” of nonviolent dissent.
As Terry Gross’s interview with Muslim reformer Haroon Moghul on Fresh Air yesterday demonstrates, the mainstream media loves anti-Islamists and the war for the soul of Islam. But it maintains a blacklist of anti-Zionists and ignores the war for the soul of Judaism.
After an article quoting a science fiction writer making a mistake that any high school science nerd would spot — the energy of the asteroid that killed off the dinosaurs — the New York Times corrects the error, but does so in a way calculated not to reveal the sloppiness of the original.