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.
Category Archives: Media
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.
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.
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.
Michael Gordon piped neoconservative and Israeli objections to the Iran deal in the New York Times a year ago and also helped foment the Iraq war with the bogus aluminum-tubes story. Now he lands at a neoconservative thinktank that opposed the Iran deal as a writer-in-residence for the summer.
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.
Netanyahu’s only goal is to control the news cycle and the New York Times gave him two solid victories last week by playing up a misstatement by Palestinian president Abbas in Brussels. And the construction of Abbas’s line as anti-Semitic reflects the power in our discourse of a tribal Jewish fantasy: non-Jews are always thinking anti-Jewish thoughts.
Cynthia Ozick has expressed racist views of Palestinians loving hatred more than bread — “they have reared children unlike any other children, removed from ordinary norms and behaviors” — but extolling the novelist at 88 in the NY Times Magazine Giles Harvey does her a great blessing, by leaving ’em out!
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.
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. […]
Bloomberg News runs a Pravda-style article about Israel’s political crisis whose goal is obfuscation from start to finish so as to make Netanyahu look good. Those charges of fascism? Eli Lake reports that they call you a fascist in Israel when the garbage doesn’t get picked up.
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.
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.
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.
Now they tell us! A year after the U.S. lobbied the UN on behalf of Israel to get it delisted from an annex of countries violating children’s rights, NPR reports it, deep in a story about Saudi Arabia lobbying the U.N. to get a similar exception.
In an Al Jazeera interview, former Mossad chief Efraim Halevy trashes PM Netanyahu for misusing the Holocaust to oppose the Iran deal and not having political dialogue with Hamas and says his days are numbered. Why aren’t American leaders and media reflecting these views?
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?
Gov. Cuomo’s order opposing BDS shows that the powerful are willing to sell out democracy. So maybe BDS does stand for something else: Be Damn Sure, that if this current of anti-democratic acts is not countered, it will continue.
“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.
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.
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.
At Huffpo, Jennifer Sabin says the BDS movement is about “the right of Palestinians to control all of Israel”. Thus she equates a battle for equal rights with anti-Semitism, and manifests a bigoted denial of the Palestinian experience of being forced off their own land for 70 years.
Wendy Sherman, Mel Levine, Howard Berman, and Chemi Shalev all say that Hillary Clinton will not or should not compromise with Bernie Sanders on support for Israel in the Democratic platform, lest it hurt her among Jewish voters in the general election.
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.
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.