One snarky tweet about the Israel lobby buying politicians, and the sky falls in; Congresswoman Ilhan Omar is widely accused of anti-semitism. But no one in the political class sees it as a problem when Israel shoots Palestinian protesters. And that’s the sincere root of the US love for Israel: unconscious racism against Palestinians.
Category Archives: Media
Jewish journalists like to project the power of the Israel lobby on to Christian evangelicals, when in fact the Democratic Party is beholden to the Jewish part of the lobby. The journalists shift the blame because they think a discussion of Jewish influence is anti-semitic, but by doing so they are denying plain facts.
The Democratic House leadership, which has appeared at AIPAC events, condemned MN Rep. Ilhan Omar for her anti-AIPAC tweets, calling them “anti-semitic.” The party leaders are clearly terrified that Israel is going to tear the party apart, as anti-Zionism takes hold in the progressive base.
Ilhan Omar was right to point out the impact of AIPAC’s money. AIPAC is seeking now to silence criticism of the inhumane occupation by screaming about anti-semitism and claiming that nobody may ever talk about how the Israel lobby uses money — Activist Ady Barkan relates a story from the campaign trail.
Does AIPAC use money to influence Congress, as Rep. Ilhan Omar said. Of course it does! Stephanie Schriock of Emily’s List said that before congressional candidates even have a campaign manager or a policy director, they go to AIPAC to get a position paper on Israel “because this is how we raise money” from the “Jewish community.”
The latest pro-Israel article in the ‘NY Times’ is a bizarre effort to slander Palestinian rights by making false connections to Al-Qaeda and Africa. The insinuation was clear: Palestinians and those who support them are on the same side as the evil men who killed 3000 Americans at the World Trade Center.
Bret Stephens’s long opinion piece in the New York Times equating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism is a boon to the anti-Zionist movement. His claims that it is anti-Semitic to see “wickedness” in unending occupation and that all American Jews are Zionists are debating points he will only lose. The piece makes anti-Zionism a topic for every dinner table and turns BDS into a household word.
Why do Americans take such a racist view of Palestinian rights without even realizing it? One reason is that New York Times writers deploy Eliot Engel and Bret Stephens as honest critics of the new congressional class of Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar and Alexandria-Ocasio Cortez when they are ideologues who do not see Palestinians as equals.
Jimmy Carter said he’d ‘commit suicide’ before he abandoned Israel, but American Jewish leaders did not trust him because of his parallel commitment to a “Palestinian homeland” and opposition to Israeli settlements, Stuart Eizenstat writes in a detailed memoir. Carter always underestimated the power of the Israel lobby. He came to believe that it helped cost him a second term, a lesson politicians have heeded ever since.
In a landmark of anti-Palestinianism, the Senate voted 77-23 to punish boycotts of Israel, though almost all Dem presidential hopefuls voted against the AIPAC-sponsored law and Republican Rand Paul said “Boycotts are fundamentally American,” and said many senators are “paranoid” about the Israel lobby.
The ‘NY Times’ runs an important article on rising Jewish “settler” violence in occupied West Bank Palestine, but the report is still biased toward Israel. It characterizes Israeli violence against occupied Palestinians as “clash” and “melee” when in fact one side is delivering violence to the other.
NYT columnist Michelle Goldberg says progressives are afraid to speak up on Israel. They feel “I can’t speak out without suffering professional consequences… That taboo is real… I feel like it’s very difficult to speak kind of rationally and forthrightly about real human rights abuses in the West Bank.”
Palestinian cartoonist Mohammad Sabaaneh, who is developing an international reputation, explains why he supports boycotting Israel: “As long as we are under this occupation, and this atrocity, and brutality, I will not do any joint event with any Israeli artist or citizen. Because he is a soldier. Whatever his work– artist, doctor, engineer, journalist—he served in the IDF, or will serve in the IDF, or serves in the IDF.”
A new book by former Carter aide Stu Eizenstat says that Barbara Walters boasted of love affairs with Israel’s foreign and defense ministers, Moshe Dayan and Ezer Weizman, in 1978-1979 while she was covering Camp David negotiations for ABC news.
The good news from the anti-BDS bill’s progress in the Senate yesterday, 76-22, is that progressive Democrats are standing up against AIPAC for the right to “peacefully” protest Israeli policies, and almost all the presidential hopeful Democrats voted against the legislation, even Kamala Harris and Cory Booker. And Chris Van Hollen said the bill will “strengthen” the boycott movement.
Three leaders of a new group aimed at preventing the Democratic Party from splitting over Israel–Jennifer Granholm, Peter Villegas, and Ann Lewis –are affiliated with the Israel lobby group AIPAC, which has been panicked by the possible splintering of political support for the Jewish state.
Jonathan Weisman, deputy Washington editor of the New York Times, praised the American Jewish community’s role in “maintaining political support for Israel” because it “is a very small country in a very hostile neighborhood.” Weisman’s definition of the Jewish community was all Zionist organizations, leaving out the anti-Zionists of Jewish Voice for Peace; and he credited the view that anti-Zionists are anti-Semites.
Just when anti-Zionism is becoming mainstream, Bari Weiss reads the pro-Israel hasbara playbook and says that all anti-Zionists are anti-Semitic, because they demonize the Jewish desire for a homeland and apply a double standard to 6 million Jews as opposed to the other 7 billion people on the planet. But the New York Times columnist is powerful and important.
Michelle Alexander’s excellent New York Times column on speaking out on Palestine is getting huge attention is already clearly a watershed moment, but why has Alexander prompted such a huge reaction? James North has some tentative explanations.
Much has been made of a recent New York Times piece about Rouzan al-Najjar, the Palestinian volunteer nurse who was killed while treating injured protesters at the Great March of Return. While many saw the reporting as a sympathetic portrayal of Palestinians, Eric Maddox writes, there are still shortcomings.
Perceiving Michelle Alexander’s opinion piece on Palestine and Martin Luther King in the New York Times as a huge blow to Israel’s reputation among elites, and to the traditional alliance of blacks and Jews, Israel’s cheerleaders leaped to denounce Alexander. Michael Oren says the article is a “strategic threat” to Israel, David Harris says MLK would be “appalled” that Alexander “hijacked” his legacy!
For more than a generation, Palestinian voices have been suppressed at the New York Times. But under the new publisher A.G. Sulzberger, 38, the paper is serving notice that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans who want open debate. This explains Michelle Alexander’s groundbreaking piece saying it’s time to end the progressive silence over Palestinian rights.
Progressive politicians are silent about Palestinian human rights because of the power of the Israel lobby, and “civil rights activists and organizations have remained silent as well… because they fear loss of funding from foundations, and false charges of anti-Semitism,” Michelle Alexander writes in a groundbreaking piece in the New York Times. Guided by MLK, she says she will be silent no longer.
Jeffrey Goldberg, Jennifer Rubin, David Frum, Bret Stephens and the other American Bibi-ists went from All Netanyahu all the time to No Netanyahu ever, Yakov Hirsch explains. Because they can’t be leading the moral charge against Trump’s “evil plan to crush the press,” while offering obfuscation about Netanyahu’s actual evil plan to crush the press, as they once did, when they were empowering the now-run-amok prime minister.
Marc Ellis writes that the rescinding by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute of an award to Angela Davis raises issues about the Black-Jewish alliance and the ability of Jews to set parameters for African Americans to speak on Jewish questions, including Israel. There is a war over that question. The Jewish establishment sees Angela Davis as an enemy. Jews of Conscience see her as an ally.