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Mainstream obits for Wiesel offer barely an asterisk for his intolerant views of Palestinians

Philip Weiss on
Elie Wiesel

Haaretz and Foreign Policy run pieces saying that Elie Wiesel was an ethnocentric religious nationalist who turned his back on Palestinians. But those are the exceptions. The New York Times says his only detractors were literary, and WNYC says Wiesel cared about Palestinian “suffering,” but urged Palestinians not to give way to the victimization narrative.


Phil Weiss and Donald Johnson on
Jeremy Corbyn

Zack Beauchamp of Vox grandly explains that many British statements critical of Israel cross the line into anti-Semitism. It never crosses liberal Zionists’ minds that the indifference to Palestinian human rights is evidence of racism.

‘NY Jewish Week’ speaks bluntly of ‘Israel firsters’ in US politics

Philip Weiss on
Gary Rosenblatt of the Jewish Week

It’s about time American Jews talked about the problem of dual loyalty inherent in Zionism; and a pro-Israel publication, the Jewish Week, encouraged that discussion by running a column on how “Israel Firsters,” those who vote on the basis of what is best for Israel, are approaching this election.

Unlawful and brutal attack on Turkish boat improves with age in the New York Times

Phil Weiss and Donald Johnson on
The Mavi Marmara

Israeli Jewish views from right to far right are given, in a NY Times account of the Israeli-Turkish deal ending the impasse over Israel’s killing of 10 men on the Turkish aid boat the “Mavi Marmara” in 2010. The article justifies the Israeli blockade on Gaza and parrots an Israeli version of the attack, leaving out human rights’ groups’ reports that it was brutal and included summary executions.

Clinton to Palestine: Drop dead

Philip Weiss on
Saban and Clinton, on an earlier occasion

Brace yourself for the news from the Democratic Platform Committee. The platform this year will be even worse than previous platforms on Palestine. That’s how things look, despite the insurgent anti-Benjamin-Netanyahu campaign of Bernie Sanders: there is no occupation, and no settlements either. Jerusalem forever, and death to BDS. The party belongs to Hillary Clinton.

‘Washington Post’ publishes article by Jewish leader urging boycott of Israel

Philip Weiss on
Rebecca Vilkomerson of Jewish Voice for Peace

NY Gov Andrew Cuomo’s glaring overreach in his executive order against Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) continues to pay off, with the Washington Post publishing an article by Rebecca Vilkomerson of Jewish Voice for Peace, explaining how she supports BDS as a Jew because only outside pressure will get Israel to change.

‘It’s a real problem if the thing we get upset about is stones’ –Ehrenreich deflects talking points on public radio

Philip Weiss on
Ben Ehrenreich

We’re closely following the reception of Ben Ehrenreich’s big new book, The Way to the Spring, because he is offering American media a fresh opportunity to discover the simple truths of occupation: that overwhelming military enforcement of apartheid and dispossession in occupied territories will spark resistance, including (horrors!) the throwing of stones by young men. […]

Front-page article in ‘NYT’ exposes the lie that wall is a security barrier

James North and Philip Weiss on
Photo of Palestinians at a checkpoint beside the wall. H/t KR twitter feed, and Scott Roth

A frontpage article in the New York Times says that 30-60,000 Palestinians a year go illegally across the “security barrier” to work in Israel, along with 55,000 legal workers; thus making clear that the wall hasn’t stopped attacks on Israelis, Palestinians have chosen not to use violence by and large.

Democrats who care about Palestine — prepare to be censored by the media

Philip Weiss on
Cover image of Foreign Affairs special issue that downplays fascistic currents in Israel, makes it seem like a normal country in transition

Media marginalize critics of US Israel policy. Chris Matthews says the Democratic Party platform is riven by “red hot” Cornel West and James Zogby, but censors their concern about Israel. And Foreign Affairs publishes a navel-gazing issue all about Israel that leaves out the depths of extremism in Israel, let alone Palestinian conditions.

Why I use the triple parentheses on my byline

(((James North))) on
The triple parentheses, also called an echo, used by anti-Semites to denote Jewish names online

The original campaign of putting triple parentheses around the names of Jewish newsmakers or reporters is both ominous and sinister. There is real antisemitism out there and I’m against it, and it has nothing to do with the Israeli occupation.

Democratic Party leadership lines up against BDS — and the ‘nuts’ who support it

Philip Weiss on
Rep. Steve Israel, from his twitter feed

Andrew Cuomo’s stand against BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) Sunday was an intentional political move by Democratic Party leadership, as Jeremy Ben-Ami of J Street and Rep. Steve Israel both call on the party to oppose BDS in the party platform. The Sanders base is surely pro-BDS; but will they take a stand in Philadelphia over this issue?

Ayelet Waldman is going to change the American Jewish relationship to Israel

Yakov Hirsch on
Palestinian laborers at Tarqumiya crossing, photo by Emil Salman in Haaretz accompanying article on Ayelet Waldman

“Heartbroken and furious, I would never return there again,” Ayelet Waldman said of Israel after visiting separate-and-unequal Hebron with Breaking the Silence in 2014. She and her husband Michael Chabon are working on a collection about the occupation that has gotten a lot of attention in the Israeli press and is sure to shock American Jews.

‘Everyone’s a veteran’ in Israel, says Junger. Well, not really

Philip Weiss on
Tribe, Sebastian Junger's new book

Sebastian Junger says that in Israel, “no one says, thank you for service, because it’s like saying thank you for paying your taxes. I mean everybody does it.” But one fifth of the population does not do it, for ethnic-religious reasons that Americans would find objectionable.

Clinton’s foreign policy speech downplays Israel (and leaves out Palestine)

Dorgham Abusalim on
Clinton's foreign policy speech in San Diego, June 2, 2016

Over the past 48 hours, we’ve been inundated by the news that Hillary Clinton would give a “major” foreign policy speech in California where, according to the latest polls, the Democratic primary race is running neck-and-neck. The truth is, despite a strong and well-carried-out performance, you could only look at her speech in two ways: It was an exemplary exercise of circumlocution, delivering vague and not-so-major remarks; or it was a major speech because of the things downplayed. Palestine was nonexistent in the address, but Israel’s place in the speech was pretty narrow, in a possible acknowledgement that the Israel brand isn’t one anyone wants to be associated with these days.

In long obit for Hedy Epstein, ‘NYT’ buries Palestinian solidarity

James North and Philip Weiss on
Hedy Epstein:  "In the background you see the courtroom in which the doctors were tried & see some of the defendants sitting in the dock.  Above that is a photo of the freezing experiment.  A person is lying in a large vat of freezing cold ice water.  Two doctors, one of them Dr. Rascher, are observing. Many people died as a result of this experiment."  --Nuremberg Palace of Justice (Photo: Newsweek)

The fact that Holocaust survivor Hedy Epstein, who died on May 26, was outspoken for Palestinian rights doesn’t come till the end of a long obit for the activist in the New York Times, once again demonstrating bias at the newspaper aimed at preserving Israel’s positive image.

Max Boot has perfect propaganda on murdering medic– but Jeffrey Goldberg is silent

Yakov Hirsch on
Max Boot

Israel’s political crisis puts a burden on its propagandists: How to make Americans feel that Israel is fine, despite the warnings of fascism. So where is the country’s most important journalist on Israel issues? Jeffrey Goldberg has been silent. In a fluid situation, he doesn’t know what to say to stay at the center of the discussion.