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What Jim Fallows and I saw

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Jim Fallows, from KVPR

Jim Fallows, from KVPR

The other day David Frum apologized for his vicious post saying that the New York Times’ Sergey Ponomarev faked a photograph of Palestinian victims of slaughter in Gaza. Frum’s colleague at the Atlantic James Fallows has now published a long piece assailing Frum for his cynicism about an elemental trust in journalism: the idea that journalists bear witness, that their work attests, “I saw this.”

Fallows is a hero in my book because he has forcefully denounced the slaughter in Gaza, by likening it to Americans napalming civilians in Vietnam in the belief that was a strategy. I think he knows– Israel is delegitimizing itself.

But I want to pick up here on Fallows’s journalistic credo, and challenge him on it. I agree with him, that journalists are most effective when they affirm to a reader, I saw this. In fact, this whole website was founded on that principle: In the early 2000’s I knew that I as an American Jew bathed in the meritocracy had a special understanding of the role of Zionism in the US political culture and, given the disaster in Iraq, I had a responsibility to share my understanding with other Americans. When my brother said in 2003 that he had demonstrated against the Vietnam war, but his Jewish newspaper said, This war might be good for Israel, I knew I had to speak out and explain every part of my privileged liberal Jewish Zionist inheritance to readers.

Explaining that meant talking about the Jewish rise into the establishment in my generation. It is not possible to explain the influence of neoconservatism or neoliberalism without speaking about the Jewish rise. We came into the establishment in the 1970s and 80s and rechristened those old strains, liberalism and conservatism. Neocons David Frum and David Brooks have been somewhat straightforward about this process. Frum said that Bill Clinton had the most philosemitic presidency in history. Both his Supreme Court picks were Jewish, so was much of his staff, even his girlfriend was Jewish. Now his son-in-law is too.

I saw this. At Harvard and later when I moved to New York to pursue my brilliant career, my cohort was Jewish men whose fathers bore resentment over anti-semitism, whose career-arcs had been dented by prejudice. Now my friends were climbing into the turrets of the new establishment. We remade Wall Street and journalism and the broader culture.

James Fallows knows this as well as I do. He has always been something of an outsider himself, as a westerner with a journalist’s wide-eyed sense of wonder. He was at Harvard just before I was and saw the wave. In Fallows’s last year at Harvard, Alan Dershowitz threatened to leave the law school unless they finally named a Jewish dean. Well Dersh didn’t leave; and there have been several Jewish deans since. One of them, a Zionist, is now on the Supreme Court, thanks to Barack Obama, who has said that his “cabal” are three Chicago J Street Jewsliberal Zionists who funded his first campaigns.

This establishment has obviously had a huge effect on our Middle East policy. George H.W. Bush is widely perceived to have lost the presidency in part because he opposed settlements (even Tom Friedman agrees with me). When AIPAC blessed Clinton in 1992, its director said Clinton loved Jews and George Bush didn’t:

I have full confidence that we’re going to have a much better situation. He’s got Jewish friends. A girl who worked for me at AIPAC stood up for them at their wedding. Hillary lived with her. I mean we have those relationships. We have never had that with Bush.

No we didn’t. The occupation flourished under Clinton, and Bill Kristol purged the Arabists from the Republican Party and George W. Bush had a neocon braintrust that saw the Israeli occupation as emulable; and Barack Obama vetoed the Security Council resolution against settlements in 2010. The Israel lobby permeates our political culture. When former Israeli ambassador Dore Gold– born in Connecticut, living in Israel, drawing $96,000 a year from the American Enterprise Institute as a “scholar”–  said last night on CNN that Israel would have to be a glutton for punishment to go near the U.N., Wolf Blitzer, who once worked for AIPAC, laughed and said, “Yeah I know.”

Chuckling through a massacre.

I saw this; and when I began writing as an anti-Zionist about the establishment I’d been reared to join, that ended my career in the mainstream media like turning off a light. Jim Fallows is as sociological as I am. He became famous for a brilliant piece he wrote in 1975 that was about political action. Called, “What did you do in the class war, Daddy?” the piece anatomized the corruption of Fallows’s own white and privileged class during the Vietnam war. The elites had escaped the draft but failed to resist it, Fallows said. Why did people with “any presumptions to character… let it go on?”

Today Fallows knows better than I do (because my experience is now so stale) the extent of Zionism inside the American elite. He served Jimmy Carter; he saw the rise of the Israel lobby against Carter; he was at the Atlantic in 2005 when they funked journalistic duty and killed “The Israel Lobby” by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, and so the two published it in England, and Walt, an optimistic Californian like Fallows, gave up any dream of serving in the State Department.

There’s just been a second massacre, worse than the last massacre in Gaza, or the one before that– the one that the U.S. turned a blind eye to and cashiered the U.N.’s effort to hold Israel accountable for the slaughter. I challenge Jim Fallows to resist, to tell us what he knows about Zionism in the US establishment.

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70 Responses

  1. just
    just on August 3, 2014, 12:19 pm

    As ever, great writing and insight.

    A great challenge to Jim Fallows– I hope that he will rise to it.

    It would be nice if we could lose this ‘third rail’ in the media, politics, etc. forever.

  2. scott9854958
    scott9854958 on August 3, 2014, 12:30 pm

    Nice. We need gentile writers with onions and smarts. The question is, does Jim Fallows value his career in the MSM?

  3. Donald
    Donald on August 3, 2014, 1:00 pm

    Obviously Zionism dominates how people in the US think about the I/P conflict. The Israel Lobby totally dominates Congress. Obama listens to Netanyahu chewing him out on ceasefires–imagine an American President taking that from any other country. (I can’t). Racist rabbis give speeches outside the UN and nobody except you and Chris Hayes to my knowledge have commented on this.

    But I don’t want people to get the idea that this is about Jew-counting in the establishment. It’s about counting people in the establishment who have a bias on Israel and use their influence to push us to support a government that practices apartheid and commits war crimes and supplies weapons to them while they do it. That means pointing to specific people and specific groups. So someone like Adelson, to take a particularly repulsive example, is Jewish. That matters because he uses that influence to have Republican presidential candidates grovel before him on the subject of Israel, to the point where Chris Christie had to apologize for using the term “occupied territories”. On that issue, his Jewishness matters. On other issues where he is repulsive–he’s probably repulsive on all issues–it doesn’t. (Of course his position on Iran is part of his position on Israel.)

    Romney is also someone who has contempt for Palestinians. In his case I think he has contempt for anyone who isn’t powerful.

    Then there are some of the major Jewish organizations. Name and shame if they have a despicable record on this. But again, be specific.

    Rabbis–probably a target rich environment. But name the specific rabbis and/or organizations.

    And then there are the Christian Zionists–they are an easy target for the cultural liberals because they are evangelical, but the support for Israel often goes unmentioned except in some stupid context. Such as the following– I’ve seen people mention it as an example where they feel sorry for Israelis for having such uncouth people as allies. Which is nonsense–that unwavering support is exactly what many Israelis want. They can laugh at the theology of their allies, but they’ll take the support.

    • piotr
      piotr on August 3, 2014, 1:28 pm

      About the support by Christian Zionists: this is indeed bad news for Israel lobby. Not that the Christian right wingers are not valuable as allies, but they have a great knack to latch on ideas that quickly (give it ten years) vanish from American scene. Nobody objects to “miscegenation” anymore, now gay marriage moves to the mainstream even in red states, so after they affix Zionism with “hick stamp of approval”, that approval may indeed shrink.

    • philweiss
      philweiss on August 3, 2014, 1:48 pm

      Thanks for making that point Donald. Our conversations on this site have been part of my education on this issue…
      Personally I celebrate the Jewish rise into the establishment. It produced a lot of great things– witness the garage sale oil painting of Freud that my non-Jewish wife has on her wall as one of her heroes, for helping her to get out of her first marriage.

      My experience in MSM was that some non-Jewish editors took on the Zionism thing strongly b/c they saw where their bread was buttered; they must be held to account.
      Just as Ed Miliband’s outspoken criticism of Israel in UK shows that Jewishness and Zionism are overlapping categories but by no means an identity. “American” makes this point below, just as mooser does when he says, Stay away from Zionists like you’d stay away from a wild animal, they’re not interested in dialogue.
      I’m sure Fallows has thought about all this, too, BTW.

      • Citizen
        Citizen on August 3, 2014, 7:19 pm

        Well, Phil, let’s move on to the Silence Of The Lambs, oh I mean Jews: http://us4.campaign-archive2.com/?u=855aabd7ccd7a77e987004677&id=c15a4cd059&e=4c25168940

      • Danaa
        Danaa on August 3, 2014, 7:25 pm

        Phil, why do you celebrate the new Jewish mandarins? are they any better than the previous mandarins (the wasps)? if so, in what way?

        Hint #1: the wasps had at least their loyalties firmly anchored in the country which benefited them, the US. They could also be said to represent – at least in part, a majority of the people, and were well represented in all 50 states. Yes, even in the mid-west.

        Hint#2: all who rise must eventually fall. Of their own weight. Due to their own exc esses. The human race has never known how to handle privilege. It seems that jews, as a subset of the human race, are no different. Privilege begets entitlement, which begets blindness, which begets, as sure as the sun rises, corruption and obliviousness to others.

        Hint #3: what about noblese oblige? seen much lately?

        Hint #4: most importantly, what about Gaza? what was it I heard about jewish values and when have I heard it last (scratching head, puzzled)?

      • philweiss
        philweiss on August 3, 2014, 8:10 pm

        I agree that Jewish exceptionalism is a problem; but societies all have their elites, they rise and fall, and this one improved on the wasps in some ways, fell back in others. We could talk about Vietnam and the best and the brightest. Another awful elite

      • Keith
        Keith on August 3, 2014, 9:28 pm

        PHIL- “I agree that Jewish exceptionalism is a problem; but societies all have their elites….”

        Yes they do, and the primary problem is the current concentration of power in the hands of our power seeking elites. We live in a money driven society and concentrated wealth is incompatible with either democracy or a balanced economy. Progressive change is virtually impossible when the wealth is so narrowly concentrated in the hands of the oligarchs and corporations. The fat-cats and corporations run the global political economy and the only solution is to shrink the corporations and eliminate the fat-cats. Unfortunately, we are heading in the wrong direction and disaster looms.

      • bilal a
        bilal a on August 3, 2014, 11:29 pm

        yes– there is a difference between a parasitic financial elite, and an ethnocentric elite hostile to its majority host.

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak on August 3, 2014, 10:40 pm

        Philip Weiss:

        Just as Ed Miliband’s outspoken criticism of Israel in UK shows that Jewishness and Zionism are overlapping categories but by no means an identity.

        It’s also true that criticism of Israel and anti-Zionism are overlapping categories but by no means an identity.

      • philweiss
        philweiss on August 3, 2014, 10:59 pm

        True!

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 10:18 am

        It’s so sad, Josh Marshall of TPM described himself today as a “two-state liberal Zionist”. And goes on to explain why the Jewish perspective is the only one that counts, or is worth explicating.

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 10:56 am

        “witness the garage sale oil painting of Freud that my non-Jewish wife has on her wall as one of her heroes, for helping her to get out of her first marriage.”

        That must be one hell of a painting. Could I borrow it if the marital situation at Moosehall goes bad?

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 10:29 pm

        “Stay away from Zionists like you’d stay away from a wild animal, they’re not interested in dialogue.”

        They are interested in Zionism, not dialogue. Look, if ham was important enough to schism the Jewish religion over, I would hope this is, too.

  4. piotr
    piotr on August 3, 2014, 1:13 pm

    Fallows burnishes his “objective credentials” by telling his conclusions on al-Dura affair.

    “I saw and heard, was that some things were knowable: in particular, that the boy could not have been shot by the IDF soldiers known to be in the area. The physics of trajectories, sight lines, and bullet damage did not match up. What did happen to the boy—still living? accidentally shot? shot intentionally by soldiers in some other location, or by someone else?—was unprovable at the time (I asserted) and might never be known.”

    Fallows delivers this story as his credential. I suspect that I know more physics than he does, in spite of rather futile effort to teach me quantum mechanics; normal mechanics I could grasp. It was indeed tested that if IDF soldiers were shooting without moving much from their positions, and al-Durahs were motionless behind a concrete barrel (simulated by manekins in a test) then none of them could be shot. However, both soldiers and the killed boys could move, for example, the boy could be startled by a nearby explosion and move few inches exposing himself to fire. The context is that there was undeniable carnage, and some photos taken even though the midst of carnage does not offer best conditions for taking snapshots. After figuring that one of the photos could be challenged, Zionist change the discourse from random violence by IDF of which there were plenty examples to “Paliwood”, taking advantage of murky circumstances of the photo (the circumstances of a barrage of fire are hardly ever totally clear, after all).

    I recall another affair, “Two plumes over Beirut”, when a photo showed two plumes of smoke raising from Dahiya, and Zionist experts were claiming the photo to be doctored, as there was only one plume. To derail the discourse on the morality and legality of flattening a large urban area far from a battlefield on a supposition that some adversaries may hide there. However nonsensical, it gives talking points invaluable it talk shows etc. More recently, a boy shot by IDF was falling down “unnaturally” as expert who spend years gunning down humans were assuring us. This whole genre deserves a bit more than “we sometimes agree, and sometimes disagree”.

    • philweiss
      philweiss on August 3, 2014, 1:18 pm

      Yes I avoided his al-Dura service to the lobby. I have no idea about the physics except this law of physics: When a military power occupies a district twice the size of Washington with overhwelming advantage, lots of innocent kids will be killed

      • Citizen
        Citizen on August 3, 2014, 7:21 pm

        I read that Gaza population density is akin to Philadelphia’s.

      • lyn117
        lyn117 on August 3, 2014, 9:56 pm

        I agree with Piotr on the al-Dura thing. I mean, good grief, why did the Israeli go to such incredible lengths to prove that the bullet could not have gone through the barrel the man and his son were hiding behind? No one in their right mind ever claimed that the bullets went through the barrel. You can’t tell the exact angles from the pictures on line, but it looks to me that at least some of the kid would not have been behind the barrel, if the Israeli soldiers were shooting at a 30 degree angle.

  5. American
    American on August 3, 2014, 1:15 pm

    I accept this as plain truth.
    But am more interested in how to end it.
    So I think some other plain truths have to come out.
    Zionism brought this to US shores and US Jews joined up with them.
    I dont think at this point the ‘some or all’ how many Jews is even important.
    Leave out the culture, religion, victimhood or whatever inspired the Jews in their attitudes. That is not going be cured any time soon.
    Zionism has to be framed as a threat to nations and the world, as communism, Bolshevism and other phenomenons that gripped the world and its leaders were.
    And the movement against zionism and zionist must be ethnic-less without Jews as the targets.
    So that when the protest of anti semitism arise in this and take up 90% of the arguements they can met with one reaction and one answer–”Ridiculous”–and thats all.
    We cant keep letting the anti semitism accusation have any merit in going against them so what zionism is has to be broadened beyond the Jews and Israel.
    I dont see how the zionist threat and the jews problem is going to be solved any other way then a ‘movement’ that demonizes zionism and lets the zionist, jews or not , out their own selves and be put in some political and social leper-like colony removed from any influence.
    I dont know how to do this but it needs to be done on this level.

    • traintosiberia
      traintosiberia on August 3, 2014, 3:56 pm

      America is largely responsible . The leaders from Wilson to Obama have followed the path of the least resistance always and majority of the times have followed the requests,demands,orders,and accepted the lies of Zionsim .
      When Senate passes bill with 90 percent or more vote ,it shows the full understanding and acceptability of the same principles that operate in dictatorships and operated under the Soviet.
      There is nothing on which they agree on 100 percent unless it is about to helping Israel .

      • Citizen
        Citizen on August 3, 2014, 7:24 pm

        Yep. Congress can’t agree on anything except to give more of American blood and treasure to Israel. How is that anti-Semitic?

    • tokyobk
      tokyobk on August 3, 2014, 7:04 pm

      I don’t disagree with taking out the tribal and religious elements at all, I agree completely.

      But I am going to make a speculation that “the jews problem” for you is not going to go away with Israel. People who want to solve “jews problems” have had them for a long time, including when people used to say, “Jews- go back- to Palestine.”

      In fact an unhappy resolution for people who have “jews problems” is that they are headed off the polite people stage with Zionism, back to the “social leper-like colony and removed from any influence,” to quote.

      • tokyobk
        tokyobk on August 3, 2014, 7:22 pm

        In fact if you read this and many other things you have written, the main purpose of your advice is strategy for denuding the anti-semitism charge so that one might better attack, ahem, them. Not, mind you removing the anti-Semitism charge by removing the anti-semitism, so that the movement can flourish as a non-racist one rooted universal ideals, as for example, Ali Abunimah and others counsel. No, this is but proxy for the real struggle like, naturally Bolshevism, last century’s stand in word for the gd world meddling Jew.

      • tree
        tree on August 3, 2014, 9:04 pm

        Off anti-semite hunting again, TBK? You know every time you do this (and you do this an awful lot more than you comment on conditions in I/P, except when Mooser is busting your buns.) I immediately think about the fact that you co-founded the Eliezer society with Shmully Hecht, who thinks that the Goldstone Report was the equivalent of the Elders of Zion and the Dreyfus case. Who thinks that the Jews bought ‘Eretz Israel’ fair and square and that today’s conflict is some ancient feud resurfacing rather than an extreme case of racism and inequality. Whose racism you simply consider, by your own words, his “schtick”.

        http://mondoweiss.net/2012/04/shmully-and-guilt.html

        And that’s why you are such a hypocrite. Your hunt for “anti-semitism” in the comment section here has more to do with your own un-examined bigotry than it does with any desire on your part to eliminate racism and bigotry. You excuse racism by Jews towards non-Jews as “schtick”, even though the result of that “schtick” has been tremendous violence and oppression against Palestinians, but a comment about the need to work against the evils of Zionism, even one that particularly states, ” And the movement against zionism and zionist must be ethnic-less without Jews as the targets,” is attacked as anti-semitic, because you can just smell these things, right, and you know what non-Jews are really thinking, and you’re here to say, it ain’t good. You don’t even have enough self-realization to understand that you are doing the exact same stereotyping of non-Jews who criticize Zionism that you accuse anti-semites of engaging in. Oh, those gentiles…its all in their secret codes, and one can’t really believe what they say in polite company, can one? Why not start checking into your own racism and bigotry? It appears to be a ripe field for contemplation.

      • Danaa
        Danaa on August 3, 2014, 11:47 pm

        hear, hear, tree.

        “Oh, those gentiles…its all in their secret codes, and one can’t really believe what they say in polite company, can one? Why not start checking into your own racism and bigotry? It appears to be a ripe field for contemplation.”

        Alas, it’s in a different code. And encrypted, too.

      • MRW
        MRW on August 4, 2014, 6:13 am

        Yay, tree!

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 10:22 am

        “Off anti-semite hunting again, TBK? You know every time you do this (and you do this an awful lot more than you comment on conditions in I/P, except when Mooser is busting your buns.) I immediately think about the fact that you co-founded the Eliezer society with Shmully Hecht, who thinks that the Goldstone Report was the equivalent of the Elders of Zion and the Dreyfus case. “

        But, but “tokyobk” swore to me that except for getting hard when he hears Hatikvah, and being excited by powerful Jewish men (not that there’s anything wrong with that!) he has no Jewish-nationalist feelings whatsoever!!

      • American
        American on August 3, 2014, 9:21 pm

        Well tokyobk

        You are as paranoid as ever I see about ‘gentile’ opinions.
        Lets me see if you can grasp as few realities.
        1) You will never rid everyone on earth of all bigotry or anti semitism so going on about that is pointless.
        2) Zionism and Israel is increasing anti semitism right now or what you refer to as anti semitism.
        3) But this current anti semitism is what I call resentment of the Jewish State and resentment of what people see as the Jewish support of it.
        4) I think for most people the resentment and condemnation of Israel is valid. That some true anti semities might be involved in anti zionism and Israel cannot be reason not to do something about it.
        5) I also think resentment of the Jewish groups that support Israel is valid, particularly in the US since we are their largest enabler. Some one is to blame..who do you want that to be…zionst and politicans or rank and file Jews?

        Now…..given those realities–and yes they may be non Jewish realities and not how Jews see the reality of this Zionist and Israel problem —-how do you want to solve the problem of Israel because it has to be solved, how do you want to solve the problem of growing Jewish resentment in populations because of Israel and Zionist influence in their governments, and protect the bulk of the Jewish ‘collective’ from the fall out that comes if it isnt solved and/or if it is solved in the wrong way?

        Tell me your ‘plan’. Tell me your plan to stop Israel sooner rather than later before it does a complete genocide of Palestine. Tell me your plan to get the uber zionist cult out of US government so we can stop Israel. Tell me your plan to make Jews see what zionism and Israel are and make them reject it on ethics, morals or if nothing else out of fear of being associated with it or labeled by it.
        If you dont want to ‘demonize’ zionism as a threat like communism or facism or some other non democractic domination cult or subversive ideology “beyond just Jews emotionally attached” to the zionist homeland then just how do you intend to 1)seperate Jews from it, 2) the US from its influence and 3) rein in Israel?

        The fact is there are People and Groups behind Zionism re Israel—-do you want us to go after them as Zionist or as Jews for the Jewish State?
        Which would you prefer?
        Because we are going to have to after ‘the people’ behind it and demonize their ideology.

        So lets hear Your plan . Because your talking about Jews and anti semitism isnt a plan.

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 11:05 am

        I was very, very shocked at the way Citizen, and a few other people talk when I got here. Me being strictly PC and all, you see. But I installed a fainting couch near the computer, and laid in a supply of feathers to burn under my nose.
        I’m getting used to it, there does seem to be bigger things to worry about then imperfectly phrased comments, but I still get the vapors sometimes.

      • seanmcbride
        seanmcbride on August 3, 2014, 9:48 pm

        tokyobk,

        Mike Rosenberg recently tweeted:

        Israel provided me with my life’s most complete brainwashing. https://twitter.com/MJayRosenberg/status/496095481773453312

        What are the odds that you and many other pro-Israel activists (especially religious Zionists) might come to the same conclusion down the line?

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 11:08 am

        “What are the odds that you and many other pro-Israel activists (especially religious Zionists) might come to the same conclusion down the line?”

        I can get you 5 to 12 on that. Or if you would rather, there’s a pool at another thread.

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak on August 3, 2014, 10:47 pm

        tokyobk:

        But I am going to make a speculation that “the jews problem” for you is not going to go away with Israel.

        How can such speculation, devoid of supporting evidence or argument, be considered anything other than vile character assassination?

      • annie
        annie on August 4, 2014, 2:21 am

        he can’t. he’s just uses it as a fall back position. like a wild card or a joker he can use when he has no argument.

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 10:29 am

        Thank you. Annie.

        See, it’s all part of the meritocracy. If you are Afro-American, or any of a number of minorities or groups who struggle for their rights, well, you’re happy just to get ’em, when you can.
        But we Jews merit much more than that! We merit control over people’s language.

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 11:20 am

        But don’t go too far with the uncontrolled language! Cause if that happens, I’ll be hurt, and cry.

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 10:35 pm

        “including when people used to say, “Jews- go back- to Palestine.”

        Like “go back to Africa” for African-Americans? Uh, no, nobody except Zionists ever yelled “Go back to Palestine” because the Jewish people didn’t come from Palestine and nobody (except Zionsts) thought they did.
        I do believe when people in America told Jews to ‘go back to where you came from’, I’d be pretty sure it was Russia, Poland or Germany possibly or Middle European countries. “Go back to Palestine”? Are you kidding?

  6. American
    American on August 3, 2014, 1:38 pm

    In regard to the tribe however…is this mj’s epiphany? Never before seen him admit to what the world didnt know about the holocaust extent till it was over. I dont know if it changes anything but him — but there it is.

    The Silence of the Jews http://us4.campaign-archive2.com/

    ” This is different. But there is another difference. There were no photographs of the children killed in the Holocaust. In fact, the “world” didn’t know about them until after the killing was long over.

    ” This time the pictures are there. The little kids next to their mother’s body. The dead baby in a crib with a teddy bear. The three brothers screaming in agony because they are alone in the world. The father who lost all three children and his wife. The mother screaming in agony at the bombed hospital where her twins were killed. The 19-year old Israeli soldiers, smiling out of the front page of Ha’aretz. Their friends screaming in pain at the funerals.”

    • Citizen
      Citizen on August 3, 2014, 7:27 pm

      What’s your point? MJR left AIPAC?

      • tree
        tree on August 3, 2014, 9:29 pm

        If you follow MJay’s tweets, “Protective Edge” and the pictures of the death and destruction coming from it, have pushed Rosenberg to complete denunciation of Israel’s actions. You can sense how visibly and viscerally upset he is about it.

        https://twitter.com/MJayRosenberg

        Here’s a sampling of recent tweets of his:

        No, Jerusalem Post rightwingers. I am not a SELF hater. I hate YOU and your ilk. Likud, settlers, rightwing Jewish organizations, neocons

        That self-hating thing is such BS. I love myself. It’s YOU fascist bastards I hate.

        I wouldn’t exactly call Israel an ally of the US. More like frenemy, AT BEST.

        Elie Wiesel revises position: only opposes mass murder if victims are Jews in year 1939-1945. Otherwise NEVER AGAIN becomes just AGAIN.

        Sad to say, when I go out with Jewish friends, I’m tense. Worried what they will say. Exact opposite with Muslim friends. I can relax.

        The friends I lose because of my opposition to Israeli policies are friends I should never have made in first place.

        I have visited Israel 30 plus times. Never again. Done.

        Israel provided me with my life’s most complete brainwashing.

        Why do I HATE Israel’s ugly war. My grand-twins, 6. How can u have kids or grandkids and tolerate these Israeli atrocities and war crimes?

      • American
        American on August 3, 2014, 9:29 pm

        My point is mj has always railed against and blamed the non jewish world for not stopping the holocaust and saving the Jews—-now he is admitting that the world didnt know the full story on what was happening to Jews—and he is also admitting that its not ‘just Jews” the world doesnt or didnt care saving, the world isnt saving the Palestines either even though they are seeing the horror as it takes place.
        So I’d say this has opened one of his eyes at least.

  7. traintosiberia
    traintosiberia on August 3, 2014, 1:58 pm

    CNN was interviewing an UN person who was talking about the recent breach in truce . Blitzes would ask repeatedly who broke and divert the discussion. UN person blamed Hamas and added that Israel was continued the operation . Spokesperson Perry added that it was permitted under the truce agreement. Blitzes again emphasized the death of the three soldiers and blamed Hamas for breaking the truce and giving Israel every right to break the ceasefire . It was obvious that these two were trying at some level to settle down on an answer that the latest violence was from Hamas.
    No where the duo would bring the fact up that the soldiers including the ” kidnapped” were killed in combat which automatically proved the claims of an existing truce or agreed truce to be flat wrong. Which in turn meant the claims of legitimacy of Zionist narrative by Blitzer and the actions of Israrli were wrong . UN person should have made it clear. But Blitzer kept on providing like a coach what direction the UN person should be taking .
    To be fair, UN person told Blitzer that the blockade and other restraints on daily lives of Gazan had one too long and should be modified/ improved ( he did not ask for complete removal of blockade) . Blitzer kept silent . He hn moved on to bring Shapiro the US ambassador .

  8. ckg
    ckg on August 3, 2014, 2:10 pm

    Among well-known journalists, James Fallows is certainly among the best. So is Robert Wright. I recall that a couple of years ago they both wrote to disagree with an opinion piece published in the Atlantic and authored by Armin Rosen that explicitly criticized Mondoweiss’s Alex Kane.

  9. samlebon2306
    samlebon2306 on August 3, 2014, 2:14 pm
  10. CloakAndDagger
    CloakAndDagger on August 3, 2014, 2:14 pm

    OT:

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/israel-intelligence-eavesdropped-on-phone-calls-by-john-kerry-a-984246.html

    SPIEGEL has learned from reliable sources that Israeli intelligence eavesdropped on US Secretary of State John Kerry during Middle East peace negotiations. In addition to the Israelis, at least one other intelligence service also listened in as Kerry mediated last year between Israel, the Palestinians and the Arab states, several intelligence service sources told SPIEGEL. Revelations of the eavesdropping could further damage already tense relations between the US government and Israel.

  11. Jackdaw
    Jackdaw on August 3, 2014, 2:37 pm

    “.. likening it to Americans napalming civilians in Vietnam ”

    Except that the Vietcong never bombarded the American homeland with rockets nor attacked it’s civilians with suicide bombers.

    • justicewillprevail
      justicewillprevail on August 3, 2014, 3:05 pm

      Well they weren’t living inside the US, like Palestinians, including Gaza and the WB, live inside Israel. Nor are they within easy reach. They did, of course, fight back and resist. And for their pains were slaughtered and massacred without shame or pity, as if their lives didn’t matter, nor their deaths. Same thing.

    • traintosiberia
      traintosiberia on August 3, 2014, 4:00 pm

      No it did . US owned S Vietnam like one owns the the wild outback or country side for shooting the animals and the birds.
      Sucide bombers at least die while killing . The homicide bombers keep on returning . The Zionist homicide animals !

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw on August 4, 2014, 7:16 am

        @train

        ” The Zionist homicide animals”

        Dehumanizing the Jew, train?

        Whatever for?

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 10:41 pm

        “Dehumanizing the Jew, train?”

        Jackdaw, stop using Jews as a human shield for Zionism, okay? That is really infuriating, and shameful. Using the fact that Jews have accrued some sympathy because of the persecution we have suffered to try and excuse criminal acts is unseemly.

    • jimby
      jimby on August 3, 2014, 4:25 pm

      @jackd: the US was fortunate in Vietnam. I wasn’t one of those Abrahamic tribal religions that call for revenge. They are Buddhists and their belief system is about letting it go. We will see the blowback of this catastrophic devastation of the Middle East for a very very long long time. In history the Jews and Christians have been especially bloodthirsty, now we will reap what we have sown. May god forgive us all.

      • traintosiberia
        traintosiberia on August 3, 2014, 6:58 pm

        Forgiving the powerful is weakness. One forgives the weak,the downed ,the fallen,the defeated not the Hitlerite army marching for more body counts.

      • jimby
        jimby on August 3, 2014, 10:57 pm

        @train: I beg to differ. Rage hurts the person with deep anger. Someone once told me that resentment is like taking poison and expecting someone else to drop dead. Rage feels good but it will consume you and the people around you in the end. Justice is quite another matter. Forgiveness is not easy and requires deep inner exploration. this eye for an eye shit has to stop somewhere or we will live in a land of cyclopes.

      • gamal
        gamal on August 4, 2014, 12:10 am

        “Abrahamic tribal religions that call for revenge.” really? where do they do that?

        Buddhists eh, checked out Sri Lanka recently? they like the Vietnamese are Theravada Buddhists
        http://lankanewsweb.net/news/8382-black-july-in-sri-lanka-yesterday-and-today

        Neither Christianity, nor Judaism nor Islam are tribal or call for revenge, they may not be fairing very well at the moment, its hard to get good help these days, but essentializing folk as if they were little automata living out the dictates of some ideology has little explanatory value and is deeply dehumanizing, and in the matter of requiring revenge just plain wrong. People fighting for their lives, land, water and freedom are not seeking revenge.

      • jimby
        jimby on August 4, 2014, 11:26 am

        @gamal: Sri Lanka and Myanmar are certainly examples of racist Buddhists. They are also examples of the effects of British post colonialism, not that that excuses them. When I mentioned revenge in the Abrahamic religions I was referring to the inclusion in their foundations of the Old Testament. I always thought that the coming of Christ would supersede the old laws but somehow it didn’t. My understanding of Islam is not sufficient to allow me to comment. So probably I should not have included it in my sweeping generalization.

    • Citizen
      Citizen on August 3, 2014, 7:30 pm

      How many American settlers then or now live in Vietnam?

  12. Nevada Ned
    Nevada Ned on August 3, 2014, 2:47 pm

    Fallows is 65 and could retire if he wanted to. That gives him a certain immunity.

    I wouldn’t be totally surprised if he now wrote articles that are very critical of Israel, critical enough that people at the beginning of their careers wouldn’t dare to write.

    After all, Fallows was the speechwriter for Jimmy Carter for two years. And Jimmy Carter called Israeli racial discrimination by its real name, apartheid, and even put it in the title of his book. Carter knew what would happen, and he did it anyway.

  13. PeaceThroughJustice
    PeaceThroughJustice on August 3, 2014, 4:26 pm

    “because he has forcefully denounced the slaughter in Gaza, …”

    Judging by the majority of the responses to his twitter (“Israel already withdrew from Gaza and got more war in return. Won’t make the mistake again” etc.), Fallows would have to be a pretty brave man to take up your challenge. It would also involve repudiating his own long period of silence on the issue. I doubt many people could do it.

  14. Pixel
    Pixel on August 3, 2014, 5:34 pm

    .
    MJ Rosenberg:

    It’s AIPAC’s War Now

  15. dbroncos
    dbroncos on August 3, 2014, 6:56 pm

    Bravo Phil

  16. MRW
    MRW on August 3, 2014, 7:14 pm

    This time is different. Israel has lost the people of the US and Canada this time. No, not the Christian Zios, not the Israel fundies that bark the loudest, nor the media bigwigs who cringe in fear for their jobs because a high monthly nut makes them spineless, but the regular schmoe. I’m traveling now and I’m hearing it.

    It’s disgust.

    • philweiss
      philweiss on August 3, 2014, 8:12 pm

      This is some of the best reporting we have on the site today.
      I’m talking to folks too, in my small town, and: Israel has lost em

  17. Danaa
    Danaa on August 3, 2014, 8:03 pm

    So, here is the conundrum:

    Jews as the new privileged class, by and large condone what Israel, the Jewish state, is doing. The majority is at least silent. A very loud minority are out and about justifying the outright murder of children as “justice” and “self defense” (those must be the new “Jewish values”). A much smaller minority, of which Phil is a leading voice, are disconsolate over the mayhem perpetrated by the Jewish state – in their name – even as they bravely seek to remove their name from the list of supporters.

    I ask, how many Jewish people have actually stood up and called the gaza slaughter what it is, a disgusting atrocity? a crime against humanity? Possibly a prelude to outright genocide (what else would one call “mowing the lawn”?).

    How many Jewish people actually contacted their representatives, wrote letters, spoken to their friends and family, showed up at a demonstration, put their opinions on their social media for all to see? or even whispered them barely audibly?

    How many came out as opponents of barbarism, whoever commits it? or calling it for it is – biblical style barbarism?

    Yes, I know. A very small fraction – some 10’s of thousands. Was it, is it even 100,000? Shall we say 10%? shall we be generous and say 15%, if we were to include the ones on the side of humanity but too timid to “out” themselves for fear of repercussions?

    And if that is the case, if that’s all it is from the Jewish community – 5-15%, if the vast majority still support – and cover – for the actions of the Jewish state of israel (because that’s what it calls itself, right?), by silence or by speech, can they continue denying that it IS done in their name? that the wholesale slaughter of children is something jewish people could easily go along with, if they think it benefits them?

    Let me ask differently now (Phil, don’t listen now…) – how many Jewish Americans have lost any sleep over what just happened in gaza? or, if they didn’t lose sleep, were at least embarrassed by, say 10 minutes out of their busy day? anyone cares to make an estimate?

    Where I am going with this is, well, nowhere good. I think it’s time to hold the 90% responsible, as in, personally so. Because the dead children had souls and if their eyes were open, they would be accusing eyes. The dead children – the ones last month, and a year ago and 6 years ago, and 8 years ago, are like zombies. They will rise to walk among us, like small ghosts, haunting only a few sensitive souls, at least at first. But then, as the zombie children continue to multiply, what was a whisper may become a loud voice, and then a shout, then a not so silent scream.

    On my side, dead children – lots of them. On the Jewish American majority side (forget the christian zionists for a moment, OK?) – there’s Hamas! and scary muslims! and Holocaust ghosts, of course. Those are always around, as attested to by countless memorials, museums, movies and books.

    Talk of collective responsibility is not pleasant. It’s incendiary, in fact. Most Americans now were not guilty of expelling the Indians, or bombing Vietnam or destroying Iraq. But all Americans – great and not so bad included – pay a collective price, one way or another – whether they were the least bit guilty or not. Liberalism is founded and gets it life blood from collective responsibility. It’s what fuels the western do-gooders of the world. It’s what fills up the coffers of the charitable organizations. It’s partly what propels journalists-with-conscience and doctors without borders.

    It is time for American Jews (or was it Jewish Americans) to take stock of what they supported, enabled and covered up for. The jewish state of israel. Not any state. Not an israeli state of citizens, A very jewish state, spinning ever faster out of control. Impervious to voices of reason or compassion. If a monster it is, it’s a jewish monster. Over there, yes, but spreading tentacles far and deep, way over here.

    What does one do with a Golem anyways? anyone knows?

    • just
      just on August 3, 2014, 8:28 pm

      Thanks for that, Danaa.

      As for “What does one do with a Golem anyways? anyone knows?”

      seafoid probably knows, but seafoid is on holidays.

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 10:48 pm

        “As for “What does one do with a Golem anyways? anyone knows?”

        It just so happens that the golems conjured up by Kabbalahist Rabbis using numerological incantation are some of the earliest examples of digital programming.

    • oldgeezer
      oldgeezer on August 3, 2014, 9:59 pm

      ” I think it’s time to hold the 90% responsible, as in, personally so. :

      Can I ask the context in which you mean that?

      I do feel responsible for the actions of my state. I do speak out against it and protest it. When I feel it’s appropriate of course and that can always be questioned as to the rightness of my decision.

      I applaud the awards given to the indigenous by our courts, both in terms of financial awards, archaic laws being struck down and land being granted to their control.

      I do feel directly responsible for the decades and centuries of abuse they suffered. In fact I feel more responsible than I would hold my grandfather as it continued through my lifetime when we knew better.

      I do feel Israel has some deeply ingrained racist problems. But if I can defend the individual for a minute I also feel that individual citizens, or even people who support Israel, Jewish or nonJewish, can also be (not “just as much”) victims of constant and excessive propaganda, and enforced group think.

      I’m not saying I disagree with you actually. I asking you the context and extent to which you feel people should be held personally responsible.

    • American
      American on August 3, 2014, 10:33 pm

      The Jewish problem….

      I am sick over what Israel is doing but if I come out against it I might be thrown out of the tribe and lose my protection and connections and be at the mercy of the anti semite gentile world.

      A thousand years of conditioning.

      Everyone is our enemy they hate us , persecuted us and holocausted us, kill them all, we must defend ourselves.

      A 1000 years of conditioning.

      I am sick of Israel, sick of the tribal nightmares and rules and enemies, I cant stand it any longer, its making me crazy, I’m going to get off this raft and swim for it, the shore land cant be any more dangerous to me than this is.

      Swim Jews, swim for it.

      • Mooser
        Mooser on August 4, 2014, 11:16 am

        “Swim Jews, swim for it.”

        Are you kidding? There’s lobsters in there!

      • American
        American on August 4, 2014, 2:40 pm

        Better to take your chances with the lobsters than the zionist.

  18. MRW
    MRW on August 4, 2014, 6:41 am

    Danaa wrote:

    the wholesale slaughter of children is something jewish people could easily go along with, if they think it benefits them?

    Yes, it appears so. If it’s ‘good for the Jews’, genocide is hunky-dorey. Enlarge it. Although published in The Times of Israel, it came out of an upstate New York Jewish paper. ‘Natch it’s been taken down to avoid controversy, but the message has been sent.

    American wrote:

    he [MJ Rosenberg] is also admitting that its not ‘just Jews” the world doesnt or didnt care saving, the world isnt saving the Palestines either even though they are seeing the horror as it takes place.

    Great observation. Let’s see if the reality of that really sinks in.

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