Trending Topics:

Editorializing

Israel/Palestine
on 23 Comments

ASA logo tiff (1) copyThe New York Times is plainly uncomfortable with the vote by the American Studies Association in favor of boycotting Israel. Check out this double standard– on the turnout issue.

First, the Times on Bill de Blasio’s victory last November, reporters Javier Hernandez and David Chen:

Jerry Skurnik, a Democratic political consultant, predicted that turnout would be around 1.2 million — about what it was in 2009, when Mayor Bloomberg was widely expected to win a third term. Another Democratic consultant, Bruce N. Gyory, predicted turnout between 1.1 million and 1.25 million. There are 4.3 million active registered voters in New York City.

About 28 percent, huh?

Next, Tamar Lewin writes up the boycott vote in the New York Times a week ago:

There are now three small American academic groups that support a boycott. The Association for Asian American Studies endorsed it in April, and the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association did so this month after the vote by the American Studies Association. In that vote, 66 percent supported the boycott, and 30.5 percent opposed it — but only 1,252 of the group’s 5,000 members participated.

About 25 percent. Only? Depends on the context.

philweiss
About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

Other posts by .


Posted In:

23 Responses

  1. Marco
    Marco
    January 5, 2014, 2:26 pm

    Tens of thousands of migrants protest in Tel Aviv and yet the New York Times can’t be bothered to report the story. If the Times were purely interested in readership numbers, the story would be on the front page. Instead they push it aside and let the news wire handle it.

    Jodi Rudoren’s too busy to cover the protest, I suppose.

  2. yrn
    yrn
    January 5, 2014, 2:59 pm

    With its recent vote to boycott Israel’s higher-education institutions to protest the country’s treatment of Palestinians, the American Studies Association has itself become the target of widespread criticism and ostracism. It has gone from relative obscurity to prominence as a pariah of the United States higher-education establishment, its experience serving as a cautionary tale for other scholarly groups that might consider taking a similar stand on the Middle East.

    As of last week, the boycott also had been denounced by three of the United States’ most prominent higher-education organizations: the American Association of University Professors, the American Council on Education and the Association of American Universities. “Such actions are misguided and greatly troubling, as they strike at the heart of academic freedom,” said the American Council on Education’s president, Molly Corbett Broad.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/06/us/backlash-against-israel-boycott-throws-academic-association-on-defensive.html?hpw&rref=education&_r=0

    • pabelmont
      pabelmont
      January 5, 2014, 4:20 pm

      yrn: Yes, you are so right, ASA has been attacked for taking a stand. This is a lesson to us all, but not a surprise. The attention paid to ASA is inverse to the attention paid to Max Blumenthal for his book “Goliath”.

      In the BIG-ZION-dominated USA — where the classes dominated include the political class, the mainstream media class, educational and other classes which depend on large donations from BIG-MONEY much of which appears to be in the hands or controlled by BIG-ZION, and the large class of people who are chiefly informed by MSM —

      in THAT USA, then, yes, we expect backlash against ethical actions in favor of Palestinians. ASA must have expected something like this. The size of the backlash is an honor the ASA wins by being “first” (or first really noticed).

      Brave folks, for not all the ASA folks have academic tenure.

      • Susie Kneedler
        Susie Kneedler
        January 5, 2014, 4:58 pm

        Yes, they’re all brave. By the way, Max Blumenthal talking about “Goliath” will be on C-SPAN’s “Book TV” shortly:
        ‘ “Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel” 7:30pm (ET)
        Approx. 1 hr. 21 min. Max Blumenthal’ http://www.booktv.org/schedule.aspx.

      • just
        just
        January 5, 2014, 5:10 pm

        Yea! Thanks Susie… I can’t wait.

        And then on to the fantasy of “Downton Abbey”. A full day– especially since MW came baaaaaaaack today. Hot chocolate is definitely in order! Happy New Year to all.

        (btw, is Shavit following Max? heh heh)

      • Ellen
        Ellen
        January 5, 2014, 5:32 pm

        Thank you Susie. It is interesting that “Goliath” follows “The Brothers,” by Kinzer.

        The Dulles brothers, sons of missionaries, had a heavy hand in direction of US foreign policy behind the scenes from the 40’s through the 60s.

      • lysias
        lysias
        January 5, 2014, 6:21 pm

        The Dulles brothers had many faults, but inordinate support of Israel was not one of them.

      • Ron Edwards
        Ron Edwards
        January 5, 2014, 7:29 pm

        (to lysias as well)

        I agree with you about the Dulles and Israel specifically, but a couple other points need to be considered. First is their utter terror of Nasserism, such that in opposing Nasser, they aided or permitted several details of Zionist policy during the late 50s and early 60s. Second is that the Israel desk at the CIA was run as a private fiefdom under James Jesus Angleton, who most certainly aided and abetted general and specific Zionist policies. (some previous discussion at MW about this is available if you’re interested)

      • Ellen
        Ellen
        January 5, 2014, 8:01 pm

        the myopic Dulles Brothers were key in not only the blunders with Nasser, but in the disastrous unrest, killings and overthrow of Iran’s Mossadegh (Iran being a free democracy at the time.)

        This belongs to the fundament of the pit the USA finds itself in the Middle East. Israel is a player in this equation. Israel played the Americans through the Dulles brothers (and others).

        Why not? It was on the interest of the Zionist state. This is what governments do. And when they find players like the Dulles brothers in position of influence, it makes it all the easier.

        What country now is shreying about Iran and bringing their Senate puppets to Israel to undermine the US Administration? What country pushed hard that the US not work with Nassar, to the point of reneging on the promised aid to construction of the Aswan Dam. It is all in the record.

        The Dulles brothers working for the USA were played like a fiddle.

      • LeaNder
        LeaNder
        January 5, 2014, 11:23 pm

        James Jesus Angleton, who most certainly aided and abetted general and specific Zionist policies. (some previous discussion at MW about this is available if you’re interested)

        I would be interested, since I don’t know much about James Jesus Angleton. But the name reminds me of Mr-Faster-Please-Ledeen and his ouija board. ;)

      • Ron Edwards
        Ron Edwards
        January 7, 2014, 10:52 pm

        My apologies for missing this request. We talked about Angleton a bit in the comments in this post: http://mondoweiss.net/2013/12/secretly-funded-zionist.html. He’s one of the most interesting, even grotesque people in the “secret world” history and has been variously depicted with and without pseudonyms in hundreds of spy stories. He’s famous for abetting right-wing power in Italy just after WWII, working closely with the Zionists in the late 1940s, his friendship with Kim Philby, his obsession with a possible KGB mole in the CIA, his management of Operation Chaos, and possible links to the Kennedy assassination. The standard story is “brilliant but flawed,” but every discussion acknowledges that he fostered a bizarre social subculture within the CIA that constantly subverted its functions. Some analysis suggests that despite being chief of counterintelligence, he was actually the agency’s worst leaky sieve. A good place to start for internet browsing is http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/SSangleton.htm.

      • LeaNder
        LeaNder
        January 9, 2014, 9:26 am

        Thanks, Ron. Interesting summary. Strictly I didn’t expect a response, since I am late most of the time and assume the debate has moved on by then. I’ll look into it.

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      January 5, 2014, 4:31 pm

      “its experience serving as a cautionary tale for other scholarly groups that might consider taking a similar stand on the Middle East.”

      Until the dam bursts and the Bots are exposed as the bullying small-minded well- funded thugs without a popular base that they are.

    • Betsy
      Betsy
      January 5, 2014, 5:07 pm

      @yrn: RE/ AAUP: “denounce” is too strong a word for their statement. All they said is that they do not support boycotts in general & encouraged scholars who oppose Israeli policies to find other means to pursue their goals. See AAUP letter: http://www.aaup.org/file/OpenLettertoASA.pdf

      And, the AAUP stance got a spirited critique in this episode of Democracy Now! http://www.democracynow.org/2013/12/18/debate_is_academic_groups_boycott_of I think that Carey Nelson came off very badly, in his defense of AAUP. He looks like a fool & biased. His defense of AAUP’s position had the paradoxical effect of showing it’s conceptual weaknesses. (I say this as someone who admires much in Carey Nelson’s career — but here, he looks like his biases are preventing critical thought or the ability to listen. Plus, he makes really unprincipled, over-the-top attacks on others, that just made Nelson look bad).

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      January 5, 2014, 8:13 pm

      With its recent vote to boycott Israel’s higher-education institutions to protest the country’s treatment of Palestinians, the American Studies Association has itself become the target of widespread criticism and ostracism.

      So? They’ve focused a lot of public attention on the persecution of the Palestinian people as a result of the Israeli occupation. All we’ve heard in response is a lot of hot air and whining about “academic freedom”. That’s really NOT an adequate response to a political boycott movement that was started because of official apathy in the aftermath of a World Court ruling that said Israel was illegally impeding the liberty of movement of the inhabitants of the Occupied Palestinian Territory and also impeding their exercise of the right to work, to health, to education and to an adequate standard of living. See paragraph 134 on pdf page 117 http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/131/1671.pdf

      What’s noticeably missing from the responses about so-called “academic freedom” is any honest effort to defend the relevant policies of the Pariah State. No one is buying the Jewish and democratic bullshit any more, so “the best and the brightest” can only try to dissemble, distract, and conceal their lack of integrity.

  3. Citizen
    Citizen
    January 5, 2014, 3:36 pm

    Yep, NYT editorials are as addicted to spin as MSNBC and Fox News, which are basically infotainment shows for, respectively, the left and the right. I don’t think the NYT editorial department realizes the extent of its yellow yellow journalism. True believers, all three.

  4. es1982
    es1982
    January 5, 2014, 4:39 pm

    It would be a double standard if the New York Times implied voter turnout in the mayoral race was satisfactory. It didn’t say that. It said it was low turnout. Just look at the title of the story:

    “New York Sees Light Turnout After Lopsided Mayoral Polls”

    And the line immediately preceding the paragraph you quoted reiterates the title:

    “The lopsided polls that have consistently showed Mr. de Blasio with a lead of as much as 40 points were expected to depress voter turnout.”

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      January 5, 2014, 10:33 pm

      It would be a double standard if the New York Times implied voter turnout in the mayoral race was satisfactory.

      You are missing the point. The Times is suggesting that the results of the election are valid despite the low turnout, because it still reflects the views of the majority. It disingenuously does just the opposite when describing the ASA vote.

  5. lobewyper
    lobewyper
    January 5, 2014, 10:12 pm

    Nice point, Phil!

  6. NickJOCW
    NickJOCW
    January 6, 2014, 10:32 am

    Most general support for Israel arises because the media presents events in their favor and after 9/11 has encouraged irrational distrust for all Arabs. Asked if they support Israel many might well answer, Yes. But it doesn’t actually mean anything; it is a peculiarity of our age that everyone is presumed to have an opinion on every matter regardless of how little they know of it. In consequence many, possibly most, support for this or that is no deeper than an expressed preference for chocolate over vanilla ice cream. Besides, not all academics are principled, some would find little problem running journalism courses for Guantanamo guards, just as there are doctors happy to attend torture sessions to keep prisoners just this side of death; not all, of course; the world is a richly varied place. What is true, however, is the tide is turning against Israel and they know it so their struggles are becoming ever more frenzied as they pull out stops and call in markers. Here’s a lovely one: http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/01/04/343677/47-us-senators-side-with-israel-on-iran/

  7. Citizen
    Citizen
    January 6, 2014, 10:43 am

    A related issue: Who Will Head Major Jewish Federations of USA when so many younger Jewish Americans put USA, not Israel 1st? http://jd.fo/s22mr#.UsrNLiRXD8U.twitter via @jdforward

    It’s always a lucrative job to head up a big Jewish Federation unit, but a second motive has always been that old time Zionist religion. Many Jews don’t have it anymore thanks to Israel’s own conduct. What youngster wants to be associated with Israel’s rogue conduct?

  8. Steven Salaita
    Steven Salaita
    January 7, 2014, 6:52 am

    The typical “turnout” in an ASA election is less than 10 percent. That’s a better comparison than NYC’s mayoral race.

    Also, the NYC gets its facts incorrect: membership in the ASA at the time of the vote was around 3900, making the turnout over 30 percent.

    No academic association I know of gets more than 10 percent membership vote on any issue.

Leave a Reply