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.
Category Archives: Neocons
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.
Sheldon Adelson says that assimilation has stopped Jewish greatness. “We should have been equal to Catholicism, to Islamists– we should have been a billion and a half people.” While his wife Miriam says her mission is to protect Israel because it makes Jews around the world safe.
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.
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.
The Israeli Knesset’s Deputy Speaker (from the left Zionist Union) has invited Roseanne Barr to speak to the parliament about BDS. Barr is known for her outrageous racist statements, which are just fine for Israel as long as she’s a Zionist.
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.
The Senate bill punishing support for BDS against Israel failed again yesterday. Israel has never been so openly politicized before, and many Democratic supporters are expressing the fear that the issue is going to divide the party leading up to the 2020 election.
Trump tore up the Iran deal for Sheldon Adelson and moved the embassy to Jerusalem. But the megadonor’s millions in the midterm elections had none of the magic they did in 2016, as even Republicans in his home state of Nevada were crushed. And the transactional president is expressing his displeasure by taking some key moves against Israel’s interests.
Trump’s decision to pull troops from Syria is “foreign policy malpractice,” says Michele Flournoy, Hillary Clinton’s would-be defense secretary, echoing the D.C. establishment’s horror at Trump’s fulfillment of a campaign promise. Sadly, the realists and leftwingers who have an alternative vision for US foreign policy in the wake of the Iraq disaster and the Syrian civil war have been exiled by the media.
Bari Weiss’s said last night “you better believe” that the insurgent leftwing non-Zionist Jewish group IfNotNow welcomed rightwing Israeli officials flying in to Pittsburgh to express condolences in the wake of the Oct. 27 massacre at the synagogue because they were expressing the spirit of “Am Yisrael,” the people of Israel. Nothing could be further from the case.
NYT columnist Bret Stephens says American Jews won’t abandon Israel because “everyone’s attractive” there. Birthright is “fantastic” because “not only do you go, but you hook up! So it’s like a twofer, and that’s the explicit purpose. It’s like, Discover your Judaism, and she’s hot!”
Last night’s midterm elections saw a historic opening for critics of Israel. Three women stars of the Democratic Party who have openly criticized Israel’s human rights record were elected to Congress. But the new Democratic faces include many big backers of US Israel special relationship: Max Rose in Staten Island, Mikie Sherrill in northern New Jersey, both in the Congress, and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker.
The day before the midterms Donald Trump reimposed sanctions on Iran and Israeli PM Netanyahu lavished praise on him as “courageous, determined” in an embrace that is sure to aggravate American Jews growing distance from the Jewish state.
David Friedman, Trump’s ambassador to Israel, seems to think of himself as an ambassador for Zionist Jews only. In a speech today in Tel Aviv, he described Israel as the “land of our national history,” and distinguished between the “country of our citizenship,” the U.S., and the country “we love so much,” Israel. He never mentioned Palestinians, nor the Christians and Muslims who feel a connection to Jerusalem.
In taking on Donald Trump today, Bill Kristol has been tweeting about the dangers of nationalism, and quoting George Orwell’s great essay of 1945, “Notes on Nationalism.” He should be careful quoting from this essay. Orwell several times criticizes Zionism and the idea of Jewish superiority in his effort to counter nationalist thinking in English politics.
Israel is already a big loser in the fallout from the Khashoggi murder, which has set back the effort to work with Saudi Arabia to confront Iran and impose a peace deal on the Palestinians. Trump negotiator Jared Kushner has been hurt by his association with the Saudis, and even rightwingers are supporting sanctions against Israel’s new ally.
Israel lobbyists Josh Block and EJ Kimball smear missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi as a terrorist. That’s because Israel and Saudi Arabia are now allied against Iran, evidently seeking an American-led war against the country, and all the attention to the writer’s rubout is throwing a wrench in the works.
Spending a week in Ben-Gurion airport under a deportation order has surely been uncomfortable for 22-year-old American student Lara Alqasem, but the detention has done a great deal to advertise the Israeli government’s intolerance of criticism. NYT conservatives Bret Stephens and Bari Weiss plead with Israel to release her lest the case alienate American Jews; while an Israeli government minister says Alqasem can come in if she renounces her earlier ideas.
Donald Trump recently reiterated his promise to introduce a Middle East peace plan in the next few months. Ted Snider says that promise makes sense of a number of unusual and extreme events that have taken place in the region recently.
NY Congressman Eliot Engel told an AIPAC audience last night that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and three other progressive Democrats who may enter Congress “need to be educated” to support Israel. The event came on the heels of a New York Times article on the new wave of progressive Democrats who have “dared to breach what has been an almost inviolable orthodoxy in both political parties, strong support for Israel.”
Trump all but called for regime change in Iran at the UN even as his secretary of state and national security adviser addressed Sheldon Adelson’s outfit, United Against Nuclear Iran. The Times has noticed Adelson’s enormous influence but it would be helpful if the press discussed the right wing Israel lobby’s push for war.
The anti-Palestinian racist viewpoint is adequately represented at the New York Times by Bret Stephens and Tom Friedman, who at least write about other things— Stephens wants war with Iran and doesn’t like Trump, Friedman loves CEO’s and occasionally says something sensible about global warming. But Shmuel Rosner can do only one thing: serve up rightwing propaganda for Israel.
Rabbi Daniel Zemel of a Reform temple in Washington, D.C., says that Jewish “anti-Israelists” are scorning their “birthright” because of Israel’s rightwing practices. And Dana Milbank in the Washington Post warns that Israel’s future is at risk because the Jewish community here is dividing over support for it.