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Pregnant Pulitzer prize winning American photojournalist humiliated as Israeli soldiers ‘watched and laughed’

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New York Times photographer Lynsey Addario stands near the frontline in Ras Lanuf, Libya.(Photo: Getty Images)

New York Times photographer Lynsey Addario stands near the frontline in Ras Lanuf, Libya.(Photo: Getty Images)

After a month long investigation into the humiliating treatment of pregnant Pulitzer Prize winning NYT American photojournalist Lynsey Addario, Israel finally issued an apology yesterday. Ethan Bronner, NYT Bureau Chief for Israel, reportedly said he was ‘shocked’ at both Addario’s treatment and the length of the investigation.

AP:

Israel’s Defense Ministry apologized Monday for the treatment of a pregnant American news photographer who said she was strip searched and humiliated by Israeli soldiers during a security check.

Lynsey Addario, who was on assignment for the New York Times, had requested that she not be forced to go through an X-ray machine as she entered Israel from the Gaza Strip because of concerns for her unborn baby.

Instead, she wrote in a letter to the ministry, she was forced through the machine three times as soldiers “watched and laughed from above.” She said she was then taken into a room where she was ordered by a female worker to strip down to her underwear.

In the Oct. 25 letter sent by the newspaper said Addario, a Pulitzer Prize winner who is based in India and has worked in more than 60 countries, had never been treated with “such blatant cruelty.”

Text of the apology available at the link.

Perhaps this explains some of the recent ‘hostilities‘ from the Grey Lady.

(Hat tip Karen Platt)

Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

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50 Responses

  1. Taxi on November 29, 2011, 6:49 am

    Of course Lynsey Addario don’t look ‘white’ enough for the racist idf. Need I say more?

    • annie on November 29, 2011, 10:30 am

      that thought crossed my mind as well taxi.

      • seafoid on November 29, 2011, 11:10 am

        They can humiliate anyone who they think sides with the people of Gaza. And will. In the Israeli mind Gaza and all its people are worthless. That drives everything they do to Gaza. The soldiers laughing would have been late teens or early 20s and doped out of their heads on Zionist ideology. Their officers won’t have done anything. Chances are at least one of them was religious. A pregnant woman coming from Gaza is Amalek in that mindset.

      • DBG on November 29, 2011, 1:07 pm

        that is so funny, you act like the IDF is composed of all white ppl.

      • annie on November 29, 2011, 1:25 pm

        it’s not funny dbg and it’s a reality many people have experienced at ben gurion too. white people get treated better. profiling happens here too all the time, but we’re more conditioned as americans to reject racist stereotyping.

        while i was pasting up this story and went looking for her photo as soon as i saw it the thought crossed my mind. also, you might listen again to the american journalist for democracy now who was on the flotilla, she was treated in a degrading way unlike the other journalist who was white. israel is a racist society.

      • eGuard on November 29, 2011, 2:52 pm

        DBG, it’s a grammar thing you point to, thanks. Indeed, IDF acted, composed, like it is all about white people.

      • Chaos4700 on November 30, 2011, 2:05 am

        That’s alright, DBG, no need for you to comment about the topic matter of this, about soldiers of the “Jewish nation” humiliating and using excessively invasive “security” techniques on a pregnant journalist. We certainly don’t need to know to what extent you support that behavior, to be sure.

  2. Taxi on November 29, 2011, 6:53 am

    The idf don’t wait for babies to be born before they attack them with White Phosphorous and graveyard-hour kidnappings and torture. They assault them while they’re still in their mother’s womb.

    Disgusting barbarians!

  3. Taxi on November 29, 2011, 7:04 am

    Is an “apology” enough?

    Lynsey Addario should sue them for attempted infanticide.

  4. Tristan on November 29, 2011, 8:03 am

    The Israelis still manage to surprise me sometimes. They seem to delight in thinking up new forms of cruelty.

    • Shingo on November 29, 2011, 3:47 pm

      The words that ones to mind is sadism and barbarism.

      They are acting like a society of animals. Welcole to the Jewish Taliban.

  5. on November 29, 2011, 8:17 am

    Are they going to issue any official apology to thousands of Palestinian women being abused,assulted, humiliated on daily bases??
    Or is senator from South Carolina going to issue another “resolution” stating his total submission to the apartheid state of Israel, and its practices.??

  6. Walid on November 29, 2011, 8:22 am

    Sick, sick, sick Israelis to make the lady pass thrice in the machine knowing she’s pregnant and even more sick is how they were laughing about it while it was being done. The whole country is sick.

    • seafoid on November 29, 2011, 9:41 am

      Israel is run by gangsters. Gaza is some kind of zoo for Israelis. They believe Gazans are subhuman and treat them accordingly. Foreigners with anything to do with Gaza are likely to get the same treatment. So the Irish flotilla sailors got it. This photographer got it. And so on. People belonging to a certain religion are going to get this in the future I imagine. Karma works like that.

    • annie on November 29, 2011, 10:41 am

      so sick and cruel. being pregnant..ah. i will never forget that time in my life. your body becomes sacred in a way it is hard to describe. what a violation on a persons instincts.

  7. on November 29, 2011, 8:43 am

    In so called meantime, while the American journalist was humiliated and her baby endangered in America’s ally country ,”friendly” Israel, the Jewish students from the US ,at Northeastern, tremble in fear because because “big, bad” Norman Finkelstein is coming to their campus with a speech.

    ” I am sure you know who Norman Finkelstein is and my question would be this: What would their motive be to bring such a speaker? What good will come from paying such a speaker to lecture here? The university is paying (with our student activity fee) for and funding Finkelstein’s Speech. A university sanctioned and funded lecture by Norman Finkelstein will be an unprecedented step towards creating an environment that is harmful and hostile to Jewish students on our campus.”
    Boo nad hoo.
    http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/jewish-students-at-northeastern-tremble-in-fear/

    • on November 29, 2011, 9:13 am

      This letter, that is attached as a link to prof. Finkelstein’s website, is WORTH reading.
      It shows clearly, that many Jews in the US want “to terrorize” the whole country of America, with THEIR ideas of what is right and what is wrong, who should be allowed to speak publically , and who not, and at the same time, the same people openly , unconditionally, and wholeheartedly support the apartheid Israel,
      the country that violates all possible human rights of the indigenous, Palestinian,
      ( and those who support them) population.
      What a HYPOCRISY!!! What a chutzpah.

    • dahoit on November 29, 2011, 11:15 am

      This aint Israel,it’s America,and protected by our Constitutuonal rights.But the Zionists and their whores are working to destroy our nation,witness the McCain Levin bad cop cross pollination of a terrible bill to have Americans put in jail for dissent,and good cop Obomba says he will veto it.I mean the machinations of our criminals is getting ludicrous.

  8. Taxi on November 29, 2011, 8:43 am

    Should this acute and blatant level of anti-goyism go unpunished?

    What would be a fitting punishment?

    What the heck do you do with a truly evil country?

  9. Chaos4700 on November 29, 2011, 8:59 am

    Ethan Bronner was “shocked?” Really. Gee, I mean, it’s not like he’s ever been to Israel at all, let alone reports on Middle Eastern affairs for the NYT…

  10. Woody Tanaka on November 29, 2011, 9:02 am

    Behold the full fruit of Israeli manhood gratuitously torturing a pregnant woman. Oh, what Noble Warriors these modern-day Davids are.

  11. Walid on November 29, 2011, 9:19 am

    Forgetting the jerks for a second, this lady takes great pictures; no wonder she won the Pulitzer:

    http://www.lynseyaddario.com/#/info/bio

    • lysias on November 29, 2011, 10:45 am

      Not only does she take great pictures, but she has suffered a lot in her work, and she just keeps on plugging away at it: Lynsey Addario:

      In Pakistan on May 9, 2009, Addario was involved in an automobile accident while returning to Islamabad from an assignment at a refugee camp. Her collar bone (clavicle) was broken, another journalist was injured, and the driver was killed.[9]

      Addario was one of four New York Times journalists who were missing in Libya from March 16–21, 2011. The New York Times reported on March 18, 2011 that Libya had agreed to free her and three colleagues: Anthony Shadid, Stephen Farrell and Tyler Hicks.[10] The Libyan government released the four journalists on March 21, 2011.[11] She reports that she was threatened with death and repeatedly groped during her captivity by the Libyan Army.

      That’s one brave lady.

  12. pabelmont on November 29, 2011, 9:20 am

    Will NYT make a big show of the ill-treatment, threat to baby, terribly late apology? Well, google turned up nothing, but NYT itself turned up this article

  13. eGuard on November 29, 2011, 9:21 am

    Bronner was shocked he said? Not in his paper. We don’t need your opinion, Ethan. Just stick with the the reporting.

    The NYT did not report this. Predictably they will report, now that they can open with the “apology”. NYT readers only learn from the apology backwards. And so only if there is one.

    • eGuard on November 29, 2011, 11:48 am

      Actually, is reported by the WaPo.

      The report says that the original letter from Lynsey Addario to the govt is dated October 25th. So already one month Ethan Bronner is too shocked to write. I correct, the newspaper was shocked. Too shocked to fit it into print.

  14. seafoid on November 29, 2011, 10:02 am

    April 2008 and worth a reread in the light of all that has since passed

    http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/2008/885/op111.htm

    The limit of Obama’s imagination
    At a time when Obama’s moral voice was most needed, the reach of his wings proved to be cautiously perforated on an AIPAC line, writes Hamid Dabashi*

    “We are now faced with the fact, my friends, that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history, there is such a thing as being too late . . . Over the bleached bones and jumbled residues of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words, ‘Too late.’ There is an invisible book of life that faithfully records our vigilance or our neglect.” — Martin Luther King, Jr Click to view caption

    ‘If only Obama could burn this picture of him sitting with his wife, Michele, at the same table with Edward and Mariam Said’

    I HAVE BEEN a silent witness to a succession of US presidential elections for over thirty years now. I came to the United States in August 1976, the very last year of the presidency of the incumbent Republican president Jerald R. Ford, and as he and Jimmy Carter were debating each other in the lead up to November 1976 election, in which President Ford lost and President Carter succeeded him. At the time of writing this article I am yet again witness to a highly contested series of primaries for the presidential election of 2008 — as on the democratic front Senators Hillary Clinton of New York and Barack Obama of Illinois have captured and divided the attention of a highly charged and massively divisive American electorate — along the thorny issues of race and gender, establishment versus progressive politics, and above all a regressive politics of the status quo and a buoyant possibility of yet another upsurge of hope for the younger generation of Americans to give political reality to their otherwise moot and mute idealism.
    Meanwhile, Senator John McCain of Arizona is leading the Republican hopefuls on a path of pathological disregard for the pain and suffering of people the world over, beginning with the poor and disenfranchised Americans. For thirty years, I have wondered what does this dazzling exercise in the democratic will of the people of the United States — when from conservative and retrograde multimillionaires to liberal and progressive public servants fight head over heels for every single vote of ordinary or even poor people — has to do with the rest of the world.
    When I came to the United States in August 1976, the country was plunged in a deep moral apathy following the US atrocities and final defeat in Vietnam, the aggressive thinning out of the social synergy evident in the Civil Rights Movement, the onset of the Vietnam Syndrome, and above all the political anomie that had set in after the assassination of President John F Kennedy (1963), Malcolm X (1965), and Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr (1968), and then to top them all by the Watergate Scandal.
    The first Vice President appointed to that position under the terms of the 25th Amendment of the US Constitution, Jerald Ford succeeded the disgraced Richard Nixon and became the thirty-eighth President of the United States, serving from 1974 to 1977, effectively the interim president covering the hiatus between the beleaguered and corrupt presidency of Richard Nixon and the advent of Jimmy Carter’s presidency. Ford was not elected to either of his two successive offices and was in fact the transitional figurehead covering two scandalous resignations, first by Vice President Spiro Agnew on 10 October 1973 (on corruption charges), and then by Richard Nixon on 9 August 1974 following the Watergate Scandal. Very much the establishment candidate, Ford lost that election to Jimmy Carter, the idealist peanut farmer from Georgia — a president who had made human rights the hallmark of his renewed commitment to a more morally responsible American foreign policy.
    That dream too, like all other hopes fostered in vain in this land, was not meant to be. It was during the presidency of Jimmy Carter (1976-1980) that the Iranian Revolution happened, and it was in the run-ups to the presidency of Ronald Reagan (1980-1988), that the American Hostage Crisis in Iran forever changed the face of the geopolitics in the region and even the globe, pushing the American imperial politics ever more aggressively to the right and beyond the arrested moment of Vietnam Syndrome.
    For obvious reasons, all these events — the Iranian Revolution of 1977-1979, the American Hostage Crisis of 1979-1980, and the Iran-Iraq war of 1980-1988 — were exceedingly important to millions of people living in the region, and thus following the American presidential elections from that point forward became a matter of overriding curiosity as to what precisely does this spectacular exercise in the democratic will of an imperial nation-state has to do with the rest of the world.
    LOOKED AT from a domestic point of view, the American presidential elections are perhaps the most spectacular democratic dramas one can ever hope to witness. Consider the drama of the current election: the world will not understand what it means for a Barack Hussein Obama to be this close to be the president of the United States unless and until it can imagine an Armenian becoming the Prime Minister of Turkey, or a Turk the Chancellor of Germany, or an Egyptian Copt the President of Egypt, or a Palestinian the Prime Minister of Israel, or an Iranian Jewish woman the President of the Islamic Republic, or a Pakistani the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, or an Algerian the President of France. But the sociological glory of this fact in the United States is predicated on the political calamity that ever since the commencement of the presidency of Ronald Reagan in 1980 the ideological pendulum in this country has so radically swung to the right that it is impossible to imagine how long it will take to push it back towards a meaningful center.
    The best possible scenario, so goes the best hope of this campaign, is for Barack Obama to defeat the business-as-usual of Hillary Clinton drive and then go on to defeat Senator McCain and become the first African-American President of the United States and allow the waves upon waves of hope he has managed to generate to redefine American political culture. The worst possible scenario is for Hillary Clinton to defeat Barack Obama and then go on to lose to McCain in the general election, so we will end up with yet another four to eight years of belligerent Republican thuggery around the world and predatory capitalism at home. Which one of these two scenarios, or anything between them, will come to pass — only time will tell.
    For now, the painstaking process of American Democratic machinery is yet to unfold. However, it is important to note here how former president Bill Clinton, Senator Clinton’s husband, had succeeded radically in racialising the presidential election when immediately after Obama won the South Carolina primary he quipped: “Jesse Jackson won South Carolina in ’84 and ’88. Jackson ran a good campaign. And Obama ran a good campaign here.” What do Jesse Jackson and Barack Obama have in common — other than being what Americans in their unguarded moments call “black”? So much for Clinton being “the first black president of the United States ,” as the Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison once famously said.
    The most racist sound-bite of this Democratic primary so far in fact came from former President Clinton — with one racist comment he transformed Barack Obama into a “black” candidate and sought to diminish his national, cross-racial, and universal appeal. Soon after this racist remark, Toni Morrison took that epithet back from Clinton by publicly endorsing Senator Obama in a moving letter to him. “Dear Senator Obama,” she wrote, “This letter represents a first for me — a public endorsement of a Presidential candidate. I feel driven to let you know why I am writing it. One reason is it may help gather other supporters; another is that this is one of those singular moments that nations ignore at their peril. I will not rehearse the multiple crises facing us, but of one thing I am certain: this opportunity for a national evolution (even revolution) will not come again soon, and I am convinced you are the person to capture it.”
    In the inner sanctum of their most dreadful despairs, the best amongst Americans now fear for Obama’s life — as they did for John F Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King. In the fragility of that fear, and the even more fragile hope for a more humane politics that it conceals, the best among Americans continue to dream for a better and a more just world, while their elected officials continue to inflict unfathomable pain on other nations, while ignoring the ever increasing hardship of ordinary people in the US . Within that paradox dwells the combustible hope to which Obama has now put a match.
    Barack Obama rises in American political consciousness after eight years of Ronald Reagan, consistently pushing the country to the right of even his own conservative politics, after four years of one cynical and opportunist President Bush, after eight more years of a President Clinton whose foreign policies was even worse than his two Republican predecessors, and then after eight long and terrorising years of yet another President Bush who has now pushed the world to the edge of moral and environmental meltdown — with the horror of the neocons and their Oriental regiment (Fouad Ajami, Hirsi Ali, et. al.), capping the terror that this country has brought against the word, in Afghanistan and Iraq in particular. When today young, innocent, hopeful, and idealist Americans cry out for “change” they mean change from this succession of catastrophe — and they have invested that hope in Barack Obama — for both John McCain on the Republican side and Hillary Clinton on the Democratic side have a sustained record of warmongering abroad and cut-throat, opportunistic self-promotion in domestic politics. Barack Obama has thus captured the imagination of a nation — its youth and idealists in particular — in dire, desperate, and earnest need for change.
    But will Barack Obama be able to deliver half the hope he has ignited in his fellow-Americans?
    TO BE SURE, on many issues, both domestic and foreign, Congressman Denis Kucinich of Ohio and after him former Senator John Edwards of North Carolina (both Democratic contenders for presidency) are far superior and progressive in their politics than both Senators Barack Obama and certainly Hillary Clinton put together — and perhaps precisely for that reason they were both ousted from the race earlier in the primaries, Kucinich earlier than Edwards. To be even more precise, despite the fact that along with many other Democratic senators, Senator Barack Obama voted against authorising President Bush to go to war in Iraq, he has voted with Republicans to increase the size and presence of the US military there (in the so-called “Surge” program); he has voted yes to reauthorise the undemocratic USA Patriot Act that endangers Americans’ civil liberties; and has voted in favor of a Republican bill to authorise the construction of a 700-mile fence on the border with Mexico.
    Barack Obama’s record becomes particularly troublesome when we turn to the acid test of American foreign policy, namely the bugbear of its unconditional support for the Jewish apartheid state of Israel . Here he has hit the rock bottom limit of his courage and imagination, and no one has understood Obama’s problem in this respect better than Rabbi Michael Lerner, a progressive public intellectual, political activist, and editor of Tikkun Magazine. In his essay “Obama’s Jewish Problem,” Rabbi Michael Lerner has poignantly observed: “A new generation of young Jews no longer blindly adopts the strategy of domination or salutes to the policies of the current government of Israel . It is these Jews who are the future, but they do not yet control the institutions of Jewish life . . . Obama’s problem is that his spiritual progressive worldview is in conflict with the demands of the older generation of Jews who control the Jewish institutions and define what it is to be pro-Jewish, while his base consists of many young Jews who support him precisely because he is willing to publicly stand for the values that they hold.” The problem that Rabbi Lerner identifies goes to the heart of Senator Obama’s message and appeal to a younger generation of Americans across all religious, ethnic, and even political divides, and yet his political cowardice prevents him from having the courage of his own convictions.
    In an article in The Electronic Intifada (4 March 2007, “How Barack Obama learned to love Israel”), Ali Abunimah, a leading Palestinian activist in Chicago, has fully exposed the manner in which the Illinois Senator gradually dovetailed his (perfectly legitimate) ambition for the White House with a systematic distancing of himself from the Palestinian cause and a simultaneous catering to the Zionist Lobby in the United States. ” Israel ,” Senator Obama has assured his AIPAC audience in a speech on 3 March 2007, is “our strongest ally in the region and its only established democracy. . . We must preserve our total commitment to our unique defense relationship with Israel by fully funding military assistance and continuing work on the Arrow and related missile defense programs.”
    The actual speech he delivered in March 2007 in front of AIPAC, from which Ali Abunimah excerpts certain key passages, gets worse, much worse, all culminating in his January 2008 letter to the US Ambassador to the United Nations, Zalmay Khalilzad — soon after hundreds of thousands of Palestinians broke out of the Gaza concentration camp and flooded into Egypt in search of food and other basic necessities. “Dear Ambassador Khalilzad,” wrote Barack Obama, “I understand that today the UN Security Council met regarding the situation in Gaza, and that a resolution or statement could be forthcoming from the Council in short order. I urge you to ensure that the Security Council issue no statement and pass no resolution on this matter that does not fully condemn the rocket assault Hamas has been conducting on civilians in southern Israel .”
    In his recent debate with Senator Clinton at the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles , just before the Super Tuesday primaries, and while referring to Senator McCain, Senator Obama quipped, “Somewhere along the line the Straight Talk Express lost some wheels.” Precisely so: as did Obama’s own moral standing on behalf of a new generation of hope, or “the fierce urgency of now,” as he likes to quote Rev. Martin Luther King. Precisely at the moment that his moral voice for a just cause definitive to all other just causes on this planet was most needed, he fell so sadly short, and the reach of his moral wings proved to be cautiously perforated on an AIPAC line.
    The record of the Zionist contingency in this particular election, as in all others, is effectively to strangle the American political culture anytime it wants to have a sigh of relief — and draw a line from which no dreamer, no idealist, no visionary can ever dare to cross. The question that Israelis, particularly the so-called Israeli “left” ought to ask themselves is what sort of a calamity is this colonial settlement in which they live that even at the most uplifting moments of a nation, they throw around the weight of all the might and money they command and cut the wings of a soaring eagle to their own size.
    NONE OF BARACK OBAMA’S fancy footwork to the AIPAC tune means that he has fully convinced the Zionist contingency of American politics that he is their man, that he too, just like Senator Clinton, is their candidate. “Israeli values are American values,” Senator Hillary Clinton famously said at the height of the Israeli bombing of innocent Lebanese in July 2006. But that is perfectly normal for Hillary Clinton, who just like her husband is a political creature of unsurpassed cunning, opportunism, and self-promotion — and thus the logic of her calculated move to New York to run for Senate when her husband’s term as president ended. Throughout her campaign in 2000, as she moved to New York and run for office from a state in which she had never lived, she was rightly accused of carpet-bagging by her opponents, a charge that has stuck to her to this day.
    But things are supposed to be different about Barack Obama, the man who has stirred unsurpassed hope for change in young and idealist Americans. But instead, what we witness is his move to one up Senator Clinton and ingratiate himself to AIPAC. If he could only burn that picture that Ali Abunimah has taken and published of him sitting with his wife, Michele Obama, at the same table with Edward and Mariam Said.
    But — and there is the rub — no matter how fast Barack Obama may spin to AIPAC’s music, it does not mean that the Zionists are happy, or are willing to trade the sure deal — squarely bought and paid for — Hillary Clinton for the young and idealist Obama. How could they trust, horribile dictu, a man with a Hussein for a middle name, a Kenyan Muslim for a father, and above all a man who speaks a progressive and hopeful language that at least in its rhetoric promises to deliver Americans form their epileptic seizure in which they cannot ever dream a liberation for their ideals and aspirations without AIPAC formal approval or else cutting their wings short where it says “Israel.”
    All his attempts to appease AIPAC notwithstanding, Obama remains a suspicious character to fanatical Zionists. The same essay that Ali Abunimah wrote in exposing Obama’s gradual distancing from the Palestinian cause, was used by Ed Lasky in his essay, “Barack Obama and Israel” for American Thinker (22 March 2007 — revised and republished again on 16 January 2008) categorically to dismiss Obama as a man for Israel. Lasky accused Obama of concealing his affiliation with a church that is in fact “Afro-centric” in its Christianity, accusing Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Jr., the Pastor of the Church Obama attended, as the man who coined the term “audacity of hope” (that defines Obama’s campaign), and also of having “a militant past.”
    “Moreover,” Lasky points out, “Pastor Wright has beliefs that might disturb some of Obama’s supporters. He is a believer in “liberation theology,” which makes the liberation of the oppressed a paramount virtue.” (This for Lasky is a vice.) Extending his dismissal of liberation theology to its very founder Gustavo Gutierrez, Lasky narrows in on “Pastor Wright for having criticised Israel and uttered the unforgivable sin: ‘The Israelis have illegally occupied Palestinian territories for almost 40 years now.'” (Imagine the audacity of uttering that sentence in Chicago !) Then we hear from Lasky that “Once this history came to light, Obama started publicly distancing himself from his spiritual mentor, disinviting Wright from various Obama campaign events. Wright rationalised his current persona non grata status by stating that otherwise ‘a lot of his Jewish support will dry up quicker than a snowball in hell.'” Lasky moves on to expose more of Obama’s sins by lining up Ali Abunimah and Edward Said as Palestinians whom Obama has actually met and conversed with. Lasky is particularly incensed that Obama does not have much of a pro-Israel legislative record. Scarce as this young Senator’s record might be on being a pro-Israeli stooge, he has nevertheless “already compiled one of the most liberal voting records in the Senate (even more liberal than Ted Kennedy) and a great deal of his most fervent support has come from the left-wing of the party, who have turned against Hillary Clinton . . . This is precisely the wing of the Party that has been increasingly corrupted by anti-Israel and anti-Semitic activists.”
    This is enough reason for Lasky to go after Obama for having, among other things, “decidedly very soft approach on bills dealing with drug, gang and gun control issues,” for daring to make a sleight comment about Israel’s apartheid wall, for having the audacity to talk about “the desperation and disorder of the powerless . . . of children on the streets of Jakarta or Nairobi,” which to Lasky translates to “appeasement, stated clearly and succinctly.” The list of Lasky’s concerns about Obama goes on and on and includes the support of the former President Jimmy Carter for him. As for his speech in front of AIPAC, Lasky believes this speech “left many nonplussed. This speech was, in part, prompted by his knowledge that a panel of experts in Israel considers him to be the candidate that would support the state of Israel the least.” The same speech that caused anger and frustration in Ali Abunimah left Lasky with much to be desired, and not sufficient at all. After a prolonged list of litany against Obama, Lasky finally concludes, “Barack Obama does have a record to run on and it is a record that should be of concern to those who support America ‘s relationship with Israel .”
    IT IS OF COURSE ultimately unfair to laser-beam on Senator Obama a calamity that has long plagued American political culture. Over the last half a century, American foreign policy is held hostage (as John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt have extensively demonstrated) to a single-minded commitment to the Jewish apartheid state, which has in turn degenerated its own political culture to that of Christian imperialism. The US is narratively trapped inside a single-minded commitment to the Jewish state, which now amounts to the worst common denominator of American political culture, and as such it will pull down any sign of hope that may aspire to transform this catastrophe to become the promise that it has always been — a beacon of hope for the world. But it is equally false to blame the Israeli lobby for the calamity of American imperialism around the globe, a reality entirely sui generis and predicated on the very nature of this economic and military monstrosity.
    I for one have absolutely no doubt that Obama has indeed awakened a dead soul in American political culture, a yearning, a wish, a vision perhaps always embedded in the American dream — to be a nation among others, to wed the fate of its own poor, sick, homeless, and forsaken to that of others around the world. What sort of decency is it, what sort of historical record is it, for a country, a people, a nation, like what they call “Israel” to abort that dream at its very inception and use all its power and wherewithal not to allow it to imagine beyond the particular demands of a ghastly apartheid state.
    Obama has had to renounce his connections not just with the Palestinian cause but also even to the pastor of a church he faithfully attended because he is a liberation theologian. How many of his wings will the Illinois Senator have to cut short before he can fly, and if he ever gets actually to fly how far can he soar, how deep will he fall? The thing that he has failed to understand is that he can never out-Hillary in appealing to, satisfying, and securing the endorsement of the pro-Israeli lobby. Every corner that he comes to cross and sell a bigger part of his soul to AIPAC, Hillary Clinton has already been there and done that. If he only had the courage of his convictions, if he only believed in the spectacular hope that he has generated in millions of young and idealist Americans — including (and in fact particularly) young and idealist Jewish Americans.
    The problem with Barack Obama is thus the limit of his imagination, for the hope he has managed to generate in young and progressive Americans of all colours and creeds has now far surpassed his own limited courage. He has come up through the ranks and moved from an unknown local politician in Chicago to a national figure of open-ended possibilities. When he groomed himself to look like Malcolm X, consciously modulated the cadence of his voice to that of Martin Luther King, and actively sought the public endorsement of the Kennedys, he had no idea what hidden hopes, what repressed aspirations he would awaken among young and idealist Americans. If he does not listen carefully to the echo of the voice he has unleashed in this valley, he would be yet another bitter disappointment, even if (or particularly if) he gets to be the next President of the United States .
    Today the absolutely weakest link in the chain of global injustice that tests the mettle of humanity at large, is the plight of millions of Palestinians suffering the indignity of exile from their historic homeland, forsaken in refugee camps and brutalised in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. That Barack Obama’s message to these suffering millions is to send more missiles to the apartheid state of Israel is an obscenity that mocks every time he stands up and puts forward his messages of hope and change.
    The critical question of course at this conjuncture is that if we coloured and marginal folks — we Blacks, Asians, Latinos, Arabs, Muslims and all the most recent (legal and illegal) immigrants to this land — will have the courage and the imagination that Barack Obama lacks. Will we cross a fence and extend a hand to a man who is after all one of us, however he may think it politically expedient to pick and chose one thing or another from the baggage he and we have brought along across the borders?
    Two of my three children (born and bred here in the United States ) have now reached the age when they can vote. They are both committed Obama fans and voted for him in the New York primaries on Super Tuesday. At this point, I am afraid the votes of my two children are all I can offer Brother Barack. Come next November, I too may leave my own darkest convictions behind and vote with the bright hope of my children.
    Sometimes I think that the worst thing about the United States is that there is always hope for it.

  15. Djinn on November 29, 2011, 10:09 am

    When I came back through the Erez Crossing there was a Palestinian woman who was forced to hand her baby to an Israeli official where he was taken out of sight and through the body scanners without her. Given those machines see everything (while Israelis stand a floor above you and point and laugh) there was no reason the woman could not hold her own child, it was just more of the same routine humiliation, intimidation and cruelty for the pure joy of it. These kinds of actions are the preserve of sociopaths.

    • pabelmont on November 29, 2011, 12:43 pm

      How about injury by excessive XRAYing? When you have an XRAY, do you know (and how do you know) that the radiation-dose is SAFE ? If Israeli soldiers were doing it (and Israeli technicians had adjusted the machine), what reason would you have to believe you were safe (or your baby was safe) from injury?

  16. Cliff on November 29, 2011, 10:19 am

    This is a great example of how antisemitic Zionists are.

    A troglodyte like eee wants us to define Jews as being Zionist only.

    Hence, we need to reconcile the disgusting behavior of Zionism and it’s adherents with Jewish identity.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the goon were one of these Zionists, mocking a pregnant woman.

    After all, if she were a ‘public figure’ like that Jewish pianist who was harassed by that batshit crazy Rabbi – then according to eee, it’s the anti-Zionists at fault! We’re at fault because a Zionist crazy screams obscenities outside someone’s home.

    • Tristan on November 29, 2011, 12:13 pm

      Hence, we need to reconcile the disgusting behavior of Zionism and it’s adherents with Jewish identity.

      This is an important point. As the late, great Tony Judt said,

      When Israel breaks international law in the occupied territories, when Israel publicly humiliates the subject populations whose land it has seized – but then responds to its critics with loud cries of “anti-Semitism” – it is in effect saying that these acts are not Israeli acts, they are Jewish acts: The occupation is not an Israeli occupation, it is a Jewish occupation, and if you don’t like these things it is because you don’t like Jews.

  17. Kathleen on November 29, 2011, 11:50 am

    “Perhaps this explains some of the recent ‘hostilities’ from the Grey Lady.”

    “Grey lady” Bloody NYT’s. Not grey . Very very BLOODY NYT’s

  18. Jeffrey Blankfort on November 29, 2011, 12:06 pm

    Zionism, in practice, has been as informed by sadism as it has been by racism. It is not a recent development. In the summer of 1970, on my first trip to the region, as I mentioned on an earlier post a year or so ago, I stayed overnight at the Schneller refugee camp outside of Amman as a guest of a young guard I had met at the PLO headquarters.

    As was the custom, the men put on pajamas and sat outside the small aluminum hut smoking before retiring. When the young Palestinian took of his shirt I noticed that his back and chest were covered with small scars which I asked him about. It seemed at the age of 17, the Israelis had arrested him, accusing him of being a fedayeen, and demanding that he confess and give them information.

    He wasn’t at the time a fighter and he had no information to give. The Israelis didn’t believe him and kept burning him with their cigarettes to get him to talk and when that didn’t work they broke both of his arms by bending his elbows backward. When he recovered he joined the fedayeen.

    I also met a Palestinian woman who had been politically active with the DFPLP. When she wouldn’t talk they threatened to rape her daughter and when she still wouldn’t talk, they did just that, asking her at the same time, “What kind of a mother are you to let your daughter be raped because you won’t talk?” She told me this story after I had mentioned to her what I had learned from the PLO guard.

    That was it for me as far as Israel was concerned, but 13 years later in the West Bank and occupied Lebanon, I would see and hear of more examples of Israeli sadism, not rape or cigarette burns this time but, for example, after closing the Awali bridge that divides southern and northern Lebanon, their brave wehrmacht would shoulder their US supplied M-16s and fire just close enough to the Lebanese women wading through the waters of the Awali to get them to drop the bags of groceries they were carrying over their heads.
    There is nothing to be said in Israel’s defense. Nothing.

    • Rania on November 29, 2011, 12:48 pm

      One of my very first asylum cases was for a Palestinian man who was one of five sons born to a family in the West Bank. The IDF systematically and routinely called in the sons for questioning and viciously tortured each of them, including one brother who had Down’s Syndrome, because a member of their family had been mayor of the town. I have handled hundreds of asylum cases from all over the world in the last twelve years since I had that case, and the torture of a young man with Down’s Syndrome is still one of the most evil, sadistic examples of torture that I have ever had.

      • seafoid on November 30, 2011, 8:50 am

        Appalling. But there is no depth to which Israel will not sink .

        Remi Kanazi
        Only as equals

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zy5R-XTRQ5E

        Rahm Emanuel wants to educate me
        and my people
        about democracy gone wrong
        Why doesn’t try implementing one in Israel first?
        Instead of bowing down to terrorists
        like his father and the IDF
        Lauding a third rate, racist, European society
        that’s imploding faster
        Than its moral standing in the world
        Enlightened like 1950s Afrikaners
        and slave traders
        Just because the house is beautiful
        Doesn’t mean the bones you built it on
        have fully decomposed

    • pabelmont on November 29, 2011, 12:52 pm

      There will always be excess. When a whole society is built (on the loose sand of) terrorism and anti-humanitarian violence against innocents, and the project is wrapt in defensive mantras like “You say we hurt them? Nonsense, we did not hurt them. we only did what was necessary and justified and thus we did not hurt them”, then the4 society as a whole will be guilty of unjustified crime and the worst of that society will be guilty of even worse crimes than the average. The much revered — by some — Rabin was responsible for the deliberate breaking of bones of defenseless prisoners, even if he also, later, made a semblance of progress toward peace.

  19. Kate on November 29, 2011, 12:23 pm

    Outrageous treatment by Israeli officials at borders and at the airport is common, though NYT journalists are not usually the targets. Check out this essay by Alison Weir on the subject from If Americans Knew (there is also a 13-minute video available there with interviews of victims telling their stories).

    Humiliation and Child Abuse at Israeli Borders & Airports
    http://www.ifamericaknew.org/cur_sit/childabuse.html

    This is a fairly well-known incident, but there are countless others:

    “New Jersey stand-up comedian Maysoon Zayid describes being strip-searched at Ben Gurion Airport when she was “seven, eight, nine years old” on family trips to visit her parents’ original home in Palestine. On her most recent trip in July 2006, Maysoon, an American citizen, had her sanitary pad taken by officials in Ben Gurion Airport. When the search was completed, she says, the Israeli official in charge, Inbal Sharon, then refused to return her pad or allow her to get another.

    Zayid, who has cerebral palsy and was sitting in a wheelchair, was then forced to bleed publicly for hours while she waited for her flight.

    Zayid, a former class president and yearbook editor at New Jersey’s Cliffside Park High School known for her irreverent comedy routines and strong personality, describes sobbing uncontrollably. “No one spoke up,” she remembers. “There were several women, including the woman who was pushing my wheelchair, none of whom said a word.”

    When she boarded her flight, Zayid recalls, “The flight attendants looked at me in disgust.” She told them what had happened, and the attendants then gave her some of their own clothing to use.

    In addition to taking her sanitary napkin, Israeli officials also confiscated medication that Zayid is required to take when flying. As a result, she vomited repeatedly throughout the 12-hour flight. “

    • on November 29, 2011, 4:50 pm

      I think they want people to forgo the idea about flying to or from Palestine.
      They want people to have the worst possbile experience, so they are not tempted to go again.
      We start having this in our, American airports.
      Do we copy anybody????

  20. Justice Please on November 29, 2011, 1:36 pm

    If she had been handled like this by Chinese, Iranian or Pakistani authorities, US officials and/or mainstream media would issue some strong condemnations.

  21. DICKERSON3870 on November 29, 2011, 7:27 pm

    RE: “Pregnant Pulitzer prize winning American photojournalist humiliated as Israeli soldiers ‘watched and laughed’ ” ~ annie

    MY COMMENT: Call me a wild-eyed conspiracy theorist, but I really do think I see a pattern here.

    FROM HAARETZ, 11/13/08:

    (excerpt) …Last week, soldiers from the Golani infantry brigade posted a video on YouTube depicting a blindfolded Palestinian being forced to repeat phrases in Hebrew as the soldiers manning the checkpoint laugh in the background.
    One of the lines is: “Golani will bring you a log to stick up your ass.” 
    As the detainee repeats the words, the soldiers are heard laughing raucously in the background… 

    SOURCE – http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1037217.html VIDEO CLIPhttp://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7715861.stm

    ALSO SEE: Netanyahu’s Security Agents Disrobe Female Foreign Journalists, by Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 07/21/11

    (excerpt) You know, here in the U.S. they often talk about how much certain presidents detested the press and how the press office had a confrontational or hostile relationship with journalists. They’ve got nothing on Israel, where Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Shabak-appointed security detail routinely disrobes female journalists for doing little more than their jobs in covering his press events. In fact, I wrote a post about this months ago and apparently nothing’s changed.

    The Foreign Press Association. . . sent a sharp letter to the Prime Minister’s Office. . . complaining of multiple humiliating incidents, which the organization claims both impedes foreign reporters’ work, as well as erodes their professional standing.
    The FPA denounced what it called “the continued harassment” of foreign reporters . . . adding that unless policies change, they may stop covering the PMO altogether. . .
    “In the past two days, three female reporters in separate incidents were forced to undress, remove their bras and have them placed through an X-ray machine in front of a group of colleagues. In addition, pocketbooks were emptied in public, with personal items also put on display and X-rayed for everyone to see. . .

    SOURCE – http://www.richardsilverstein.com/tikun_olam/2011/07/21/netanyahus-security-agents-disrobe-female-foreign-journalists/

    LASTLY, FROM ALISTAIR COOK, London Review of Books, 03/03/11:

    (excerpts)…It was [Ariel] Sharon who pioneered the philosophy of ‘maintained uncertainty’ that repeatedly extended and then limited the space in which Palestinians could operate by means of an unpredictable combination of changing and selectively enforced regulations, and the dissection of space by settlements, roads Palestinians were not allowed to use and continually shifting borders. All of this was intended to induce in the Palestinians a sense of permanent temporariness
    …It suits Israel to have a ‘state’ without borders so that it can keep negotiating about borders, and count on the resulting uncertainty to maintain acquiescence

    SOURCE – http://www.lrb.co.uk/v33/n05/alastair-crooke/permanent-temporariness
    ALSO SEE: Learned helplessness http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Learned_helplessness

    • seafoid on November 30, 2011, 9:41 am

      JEWISH WORLD / The Jewish people is becoming its own enemy
      Leading up to the evacuation of “The House of Contention,” countless masked Jews have been involved openly and smugly in acts of utter cruelty.
      By Avrum Rosenseweig 2008

      http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/news/jewish-world-the-jewish-people-is-becoming-its-own-enemy-1.259304

      Leading up to the evacuation of “The House of Contention,” countless masked Jews have been involved openly and smugly in acts of utter cruelty. In one situation, Jews set fire in and around a Palestinian home comprising 20 people, many of them children. Security guards form the nearby settlement Kiryat Arba sealed off the entrance to the Palestinian home, preventing assistance. The crazed un-Jewish behavior continued.
      Men – their faces covered as well – hurled rocks down onto the family dwelling while children cried bitterly inside, fearing for their death.

      The back of the house was on fire. Groups of Jews stood by and watched, according to reports, ?suggesting to the stone throwers ways of effectively harming the family.? I am nauseous just knowing this.

      My God, we now have brutes within our nation with the ability – and worse, the desire – to terrorize children, remembering full well the fear in our family?s eyes as they watched thugs breaking down our Jewish doors. I am ashamed and disappointed. My liberal views about the West Bank and its association to Israel have nothing to do with this article. Nothing! I must only ask: At what point did Israeli activists turn into vicious thugs blinded by hate?

      When was that moment when so many Jews decided it was okay to desecrate Muslim tombstone (like they did to us), to torch fields, to terrorize mothers and children with fire arms, to scribble the Magen David on their mosques? We were not a violent people. We never danced and sang while our foes suffered. When did we become our enemy?

      and another

      http://www.haaretz.com/news/israeli-troops-humiliate-palestinians-and-put-it-on-youtube-1.278442

      Forty-three seconds: that’s the duration of a video clip uploaded to YouTube less than a year ago under the category of “Comedy.” For the “hero” of the clip, an unidentified young Arab, they were probably eternally long seconds and far from amusing. He was forced to slap himself and sing to the jubilant shouts of the photographer and his buddies – all of them members of Israel’s Border Police.
      This clip, which has been viewed more than 2,800 times, shows the unknown Palestinian standing in a desert setting while a disembodied voice orders him in Hebrew to hit himself: “Yallah, start, do it hard!” The viewers hear the chuckles of the other policemen and a clear voice telling the Arab: “Say ‘Ana behibak Mishmar Hagvul’ [“I love the Border Police? in a mix of Arabic and Hebrew]. Say it!”

      They see him obey in a subdued voice and with a frightened look, even as he goes on slapping himself. They hear the “director” laughing and the faceless voice shouting: “Again! Ana behibak Mishmar Hagvul.” After a little more than 30 seconds, the voice says, “Say ‘Wahad hummus wahad ful'” – and the Arab man obeys and then is told to complete the rhyme: “Ana behibak Mishmar Hagvul.” After 40 seconds, the abusers appear to have had enough and the voice impatiently orders the victim: “Yallah, rukh, rukh, rukh” (“go”). The camera turns and for a fraction of a second a Border Police Jeep is visible. A few dozen viewers sent comments. “Hahahaha, it was great the way he excruciated himself.” Another added: “That’s how it should be!!!!! Stinking Arab.” And a third pointed out, “He should have been shot!! Sons of bitches.” A few viewers took pity on the victim, though with reservations. One person remarked, “Mercy on the guy, even if he’s an Arab. What’s it in aid of? He didn?’t do anything

  22. DICKERSON3870 on November 29, 2011, 7:45 pm

    ALSO SEE: Lynsey Addario strip searched on Israel border ~ by Rose Parker, ‘Mail Online’, 11/29/11
    LINKS – http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2067586/Lynsey-Addario-strip-searched-Israel-border.html

    P.S. Don’t miss the misogynistic comments posted to the ‘Mail Online’ article!
    COMMENTS, A/K/A/ THE (HASBARA) EMPIRE STRIKES BACK:

    • I’m baffled, why would you be a war photographer in the Middle- East while pregnant? Take a leave of absence, and even I know that Israel is severely security conscience and not going through an x-ray machine raises flags. Even the TSA would flip in this case as well. The treatment of women in that area is horrid, everyone know that.
    – Alexis, San Diego, CA, 29/11/2011 19:19

    • Let me try to understand this – she wanted to avoid the x-ray because of a health risk to her fetus, but she deliberately puts said fetus in the line of fire so she can take pictures? Too bad I can’t call child services for an unborn baby.
    – BettyS, USA, 29/11/2011 18:04

    • You go to a war zone, lady, why are you so surprised about the terrible treatment you received. I’m sorry you endured what you endured, but…
    – SantaFeJack, Santa Fe New Mexico USA, 29/11/2011 17:32

    • Pregnant? War photographer? Stay home please.
    – John W. Odijk, San Diego, California Republic, 29/11/2011 16:48

    • I suggest Miss Addario stop placing herself in harms way if she is worried about carrying her baby to term. You don’t go to the Gaza border where there is always trouble from Hamas and get put out that you have to go thru an x-ray! Wake-up and smell the terror, Lynsey. SHEESH!
    – Dvir Yaakov, LA & Jerusalem, 29/11/2011 16:13

    • Sounds like she’s in the wrong job.
    – Russ, Little Chalfont, 29/11/2011 15:53

    • Boo-effin-hoo! If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen! This woman’s obviously an experienced reporter and is no stranger to the ways of the world — cruel or not. Why is she surprised and complaining? I’m not saying she deserved this treatment, I’m just saying it’s part and parcel of living this kind of lifestyle. If she wants to make sure her baby is safe, then stop going to dangerous countries! If she doesn’t want to be groped by slimy, filthy men, then stop going to dangerous countries! You’ve got a choice, lady.
    – Diana, San Antonio, TX USA, 29/11/2011 15:53

    • They’re in a fight for survival. Do you GET THAT? They have women detonating themselves and killing innocents people. This isn’t the Oprah Show. It’s Israel, and they have a right to do what they have to to protect themselves. There are over 30 Arab countries and only one place the Jews can call home. They are threatened daily with being wiped out and run into the sea. Get over it, woman.
    – Monique, State of Despair, 29/11/2011 15:50

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