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State Dep’t says Netanyahu speech is not inappropriate, disrespectful, humiliating or embarrassing

Philip Weiss on
Jen Psaki

Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to both Houses of Congress to rebut President Obama’s Iran policy is a full-on fiasco. It keeps stirring things up and getting attention. Opposition to the speech is mounting on Capitol Hill, say both the US Campaign to End the Occupation and Jeffrey Goldberg. And any reasonable person has to wonder, Wait, why are the warmongering Israelis messing in our negotiations? Where did a rightwing foreign prime minister derive the power to take on the president on equal terms?

‘The New York Times’ throws another sop to lovers of Israel

James North on
Nitsana Darshan-Leitner

A portrait of a rightwing Israeli lawyer in the Times is a transparent effort to show Israel supporters who monitor the paper closely that the Times takes rightwing Zionists more seriously than it does leftwingers or Palestinians.

Tell your congressperson: Don’t attend Netanyahu’s speech

Philip Weiss on
Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney

If it was outrageous and inappropriate and unprecedented for the Republicans to ask Netanyahu to speak to Congress, thereby undermining Obama’s Iran policy, those who oppose war should take action, and give Netanyahu the cold shoulder when he comes to Congress

Netanyahu speech could turn Israel lobby into a political football

Philip Weiss on

The stunning invitation to Netanyahu to address the Congress in March against Obama may at last politicize the “special relationship,” forcing Democrats to side with the president over Israel and unleashing a debate over our Israeli policy, including the damage to the U.S. from the unending occupation

How a culture remembers its crimes is important: A review of ‘American Sniper’

Eamon Murphy on
(Image from the film "American Sniper")

The greatest crime of the twenty-first century so far has come to the big screen, and it’s a hit. Eamon Murphy reviews Clint Eastwood’s film “American Sniper” which tells the story of Iraq war sniper Chris Kyle. Murphy writes: “There’s a generic antiwar undercurrent, but no understanding of the myriad ways in which this specific act of aggression was so monstrous. The conflicting signals were probably part of a strategy to drum up business through controversy, but the movie deserves to be talked about: how a culture remembers its crimes is always of interest. We seem willing to regret the Iraq War, provided that we never have to face it; American Sniper abides by this profitable bargain.”

Obama won’t meet Netanyahu during ‘bizarre,’ ‘historic,’ ‘unprecedented’ visit (Updated)

Philip Weiss on
House Speaker John Boehner and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Photo:Jonathan Ernst / REUTERS)

The Congressional invitation to Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to both houses of Congress, purposely upstaging President Obama’s State of the Union speech on Iran and terrorism is a shocker that the MSM can’t ignore. More Iran sanctions would be like throwing “a grenade” into negotiations, John Kerry warns, while US media reflect shock that Congress would invite Netanyahu to urge such a course. The White House and State Department say they won’t meet with Netanyahu on the visit, the Israel lobby calls it a snub.

Can we just retire the phrase ‘relative calm’?

Patrick Connors on

The New York Times’ Isabel Kershner says the stabbing of Israelis by a Palestinian in Jerusalem “broke a period of relative calm.” Can we retire that phrase permanently? Have Palestinians ever experienced a period of relative calm?

The ‘hasbara’ tweeps who brought down Jim Clancy, and their ties to Israel and the Israel lobby

Allison Deger on
Jim Clancy.

Veteran CNN journalist Jim Clancy’s resignation this week is one of the odder media fallouts from the Charlie Hebdo Paris attack. On January 7, 2015 Clancy got into a late night Twitter spat regarding the French satirical magazine with online adversaries. He told them they were ganging up on him and practicing “hasbara,” the Hebrew word for “explaining” that describes pro-Israel advocacy. As it turns out, Clancy was not off base. Some that spared with him have worked for the Israeli government and pro-Israel lobby groups.

The ‘bait & switch’ politics of liberal Zionism

Liz Rose on
J Street activists in Philadelphia, February 2012. (Photo: J Street)

Kai Bird’s New York Times Op-Ed “Israel, a Jewish Republic” is another piece for readers who choose to believe the mythology of Israel over the reality of Israel. It is representative of the bait-and-switch that is occurring in liberal Zionist thought. The reader is initially enticed with the progressive rhetoric, but once you’re deeper inside the writing, the author stops short and unveils potentially colonialist rhetoric.

‘New York Times’ normalizes the blockade of Gaza

Donald Johnson and James North on
New York Times headquarters. (Photo: Wikipedia)

The NYT demonizes Hamas in promoting a bridge-building effort to bring 37 Gaza war orphans to visit Israel so as to see it in a positive light. The main function of the feel-good exercise is to make liberal Zionists feel better about themselves while doing nothing to end open-air prison conditions in Gaza.

Caroline Glick says there were no Palestinian refugees

Philip Weiss on
Caroline Glick, photo by Ryan F. Cain

Israeli-American writer Caroline Glick says that Jews have claimed Israel for 3500 years so they are the indigenous people of the land; and thus the hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who were expelled in 1948 are not refugees.

Chris Hedges is blackballed by Penn after likening ISIS to Israel

Philip Weiss on
Chris Hedges

All the free-speech rules go out the window for Israel. You can make a movie about killing a foreign dictator and the president will stand up for you, but if you liken Israel to ISIS, as Chris Hedges did, then you get disinvited from a speaking gig at Penn

Roger Cohen recites Livni talking points in ‘NYT’ column to blame Palestinians for peace process failure

Matthew Taylor on
Tzipi Livni at a "Youths for Tzipi Livni" party in February 2009.

In a disingenuous ‘NYT’ column Roger Cohen presents a fawning interview of Tzipi Livni and blames the Palestinian Authority for the Spring 2014 collapse of peace negotiations. The article is a recitation of standard Israeli talking points and fails to include Palestinian or American viewpoints which squarely put the failure of negotiations on continued Israeli settlement construction.