Posted in: Israel
Published on Jul 06, 2010 by Phyllis Chesler
An Avalanche of Anti-Israel Propaganda
There is an avalanche of hatred bearing down on Israel. I fear it might be too late to stem this "blood-dimmed" tide and its fearful consequences.
The state of Israel was envisioned, not only as a way to rescue Holocaust survivors and Jews who were persecuted and endangered in Arab and Muslim countries, not only as a movement for national and religious sovereignty, but also as a way of protecting the lives of Jews elsewhere, everywhere. Now, the very existence of the only Jewish state is being used to justify attacks against Jews and Jewish holy sites all around the world, including within Israel itself. And, the entire world is, irrationally, heart-sickeningly, joining in the legal, cultural, military, propaganda, and economic lynching of Israel.
The propaganda war is, arguably, the hottest war. Today, on the very day that President Obama was due to meet with Prime Minister Netanyahu—guess what the New York Times prints? Before Bibi could even have breakfast, the paper was, no doubt, on his desk. The lead story, of nearly 5000 words is titled: "Tax-Exempt Funds Aid Settlements in West Bank." The article is accompanied by no fewer than six photographs and a map of the so-called "illegal settlements" that is about six times larger than the entire map of Israel when viewed in situ, surrounded by its many Arab, Muslim neighbors. This is only the latest example of a long campaign at the Paper of Record to vilify the Jewish state and her supporters, especially Christian-Americans.
The Times article is propaganda and advocacy, not even-handed journalism. In my view, the Paper of Record is doing some crude heavy lifting for the White House. This piece—so prominent, so lengthy, so carefully timed– is yet another way to pressure Prime Minister Netanyahu even before he sits down with President Obama. Just as you've given up Gaza, give up the West Bank, give up East Jerusalem, accept the return of five generations of Palestinian "refugees," give up control of Tel Aviv and Haifa–in short, do what King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia wants and then maybe, just maybe, we'll let a remnant of Jewry live. True, only as second- or third-class citizens but if this means peace in the Middle East and an Arab world united with America against Iran, little enough to ask.
Of course, I wrote a letter to the Gray Lady about their lead article which—who knows?—they might print. It's happened before. But, what needs to be said requires at least the same 5000 words that comprise this foul and misleading piece. And, it needs to be written by the most eloquent Israeli diplomats and by the world's leading historians and Middle East analysts. I am only one Jew, crying out, dependent on what I read in the mass media and on the internet.
The New York Times is the true Bible for most liberal Jews. Fed today's kind of steady propaganda, year in, year out, liberal and young Jews believe that what they read here is the whole truth—after all, they've read it in the Bible. Hence, they are far more comfortable, far more rewarded for attacking and critiquing Israel than for defending Israel from Big Lies—and for attacking, rather than respecting, Israel's Christian-American supporters.
They may feel that doing so fulfills a Jewish "religious" obligation.
This article presents the settlements as "illegal," "isolated" "outposts," run by "militants" and supported by funds from abroad supplied by wealthy American Jews and by Christian Evangelical supporters of Israel. It's all presented as a damning and dramatic expose of shady and nefarious characters.
"Illegal" and "militant" are an interesting choice of words for a newspaper which refuses to call Turkish assassins and mercenaries "terrorists," but prefers to refer to them as "humanitarian activists or "divers;" that, over the years, refused to describe the dreaded Sudanese Janjaweed as "ethnic Arab Muslims" who were engaged in "genocidal aggression" towards black African Muslims, Christians, and animists.
First, this focus on what American dollars are buying abroad—the subject of this article–might be balanced by an equal examination of what Saudi funding and the Saudi Lobby, (funds which also emanate from abroad), are purchasing in America: real estate, universities, Middle East programming, the media—and mosques which preach hatred of infidels, and which raise funding for terrorist organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood, Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, and for every conceivable Palestinian form of terrorism.
Second, after outlining the tax-exempt support for allegedly "illegal" settlements in the West Bank, the article utterly fails the most minimal standards for even handed reporting. It fails to mention the nearly half century-long funding of an Israel-hating, corrupt, terrorist and anti-Palestinian Palestinian leadership—by the United States, the United Nations, The European Union, and by the Arab and Muslim world.
Additionally, the article fails to note that there are as many foundations and NGOs who also use American tax-exempt status to defame and weaken Israel, both globally and within Israel proper. For example: The Ford Foundation, Open Society Institute, (that's Soros's baby), New Israel Fund, Palestinian Right to Return (Al-Awda), Friends of Sabeel, Middle East Children's Alliance, Deir Yassin Remembered, Rachel Corrie Foundation, and Birthright Unplugged—to name only a few. My colleague, Professor Gerald Steinberg, has a much longer list of such NGOs.
Where is a comparable 5,000-word, front-page article about the Saudi Lobby and the NGO tax-exempt funding of every conceivable organization and project that demonizes and endangers Israel?
For a paper which prides itself on fairness, objectivity, even-handedness, why does this article quote only the Palestinian negotiator but not his Israeli counterpart?
Helen Freedman, the Executive Director of Americans for a Safe Israel, (AFSI), who is quoted in the article and whose picture is shown had this to say: "My advice to those worried about charitable funds going to support remarkable people who put their lives at risk for love of their country, is to read the factual history of the State of Israel. AFSI will be happy to supply copies of Battleground, free of charge, to all those who wish to learn the truth, rather than the hate-inspired myths regarding the biblical, historic, and legal claim of the Jewish people to the Jewish state."
But America elected Obama President. Liberal Jews all voted for him too. Obama turned out to be a President who bowed down, quite low, to King Abdullah—but not to Queen Elizabeth; who has, explosively, told the head of NASA that NASA's primary goal is to reach out to the Muslim world; and whose mentors include the Reverend Jeremiah Wright ("God damn America") and The Nation of Islam's Louis Farrakhan who, only recently, in a letter to American Jewish leaders, ranted against Jews. Minister Farrakhan accused Jews of having "an undeniable record of Jewish anti-Black behavior, starting with the horror of the trans-Atlantic slave trade, plantation slavery, Jim Crow, sharecropping…out history with you shows you have been our worst enemy." Farrakhan ended his letter with a threat and a curse. If the Jews continue to "fight and oppose me rather than help me lift my people from their degraded state, Allah (God) and his Messiah will bring you and your people to disgrace and ruin and destroy your power and influence here and in the world."
Farrakhan fails to mention the enormous role that Muslims played in the African slave trade—a point which Morton Klein, the President of the Zionist Organization of America makes. Klein has called upon our President to condemn Farrakhan's letter, especially because the church which the President attended for twenty years recently honored Farrakhan.
Although I was a Hillary supporter, as an old civil rights activist I was also thrilled by the handsome and charismatic…stranger in our midst who rose to such great heights so quickly. For many, a vote for Obama proved they were not racists, that they rejected America's history of slavery; voting for Obama meant that one was entitled to feel "cleansed" of the sin of racism.
I did not like how Obama's Team cut Hillary out. (And no, I do not "like" Hillary, that is not the point). However, in the beginning, I though that America had simply hired the empty suit instead of the girl. On the other hand, I thought, perhaps we've hired a Muslim/Islamist Manchurian candidate.
Now, you tell me.
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