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Old 06-19-2010, 04:42 AM   #76
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Originally Posted by Irvine511 View Post
floating conspiracy theories isn't going to win you any support. the tired "the Jews control the media" is silly. you can certainly point to AIPAC money in Congress, but there are other, bigger lobbying groups (the NRA springs to mind) that wield far more influence.
I don't deny the NRA's influence, but it doesn't matter when it comes to foreign policy -- just as Zionist groups don't matter (as the AARP does) when it comes to health care.

It's not a conspiracy theory; it's the only logical conclusion I can draw, other than the possibility that these news folks have lots of pro-Israeli friends and are fond of the US' relationship with Israel dating back to the Cold War. It's the same reasoning I use to figure out why Jon Stewart has moved to the right on Israel; I think it has to do with his friendship with nationalist and pro-Israeli folks like David Gregory (who is Jewish) and Brian Williams (who's Christian) and his inability to criticize them, which, in turn, has made him tepid on Israel. Stephen Colbert (a Christian), though, is far more pro-Israeli. I think, among non-Jews, Holocaust guilt plays a major role and they're trying to look heroic -- as if they would have stopped the Holocaust -- by standing by Israel now, which is a dangerous conflation.

I've specifically noted instances in which PBS' Newshour issues apologies for having a discussion more balanced with folks arguing the "Muslim" side with equal ferocity as the "Israeli"/US side. Yet they never apologize for having a weak defender of the "Muslim" side, but greater representation from the right wing Jewish or Israeli side.

I was shocked to see "Now"'s David Brancaccio (a liberal on domestic and most foreign policy issues) completely ignore that Ahmadinejad's translator was explaining that Ahmadinejad never pledged to kill Israelis; he was, in fact, quoting someone who implied that Israel shouldn't be there, which is not a genocidal sentiment; the statement was misquoted by an Israeli newspaper and never questioned by the US media. Brancaccio has, in contrast to most leftists, used the argument of justifying massive violence against people just because they're terrorists. It was a very irrational and shockingly aggressive performance by Brancaccio. Bill Moyers is also extremely pro-Israeli, showing clips of Netanyahu when he had Richard Goldstone (the UN rep who condemned mostly Israel for its far greater war crimes) on, but not Hamas or any representative of the Palestinian people.

PBS has also done documentaries explaining that Hamas' basis is akin to anti-semitism and that Jews are under siege, and demanding Palestinians adopt non-violence like Ghandi or MLK. These documentaries never condescend to the Israeli side and conveniently ignore Israeli atrocities or use of violence.

Now, if there's ever an ethnic group around the world not under siege, it's Jews. Perhaps in the Islamic world, especially in repressive regimes, there's some horrible anti-semitism, but one could argue Muslims face far greater discrimination in the West. And far worse than either of these groups are Latinos, then Blacks, then native Americans or other indigenous peoples who have it the worst off.

There's a shocking unwillingness on PBS' part to criticize Israel's occupation -- in stark contrast to publicly funded channels in other countries like the CBC and BBC. Even Israeli media is more critical and voices of the left are heard in these other media, but not in the US. I think much of this has to do with PBS' dependence on charitable donations. The notion that Jews are cheap is something I've never seen. Jews are extremely charitable and politically active. It stands to reason that more right wing elements among them are giving to PBS and skewing the content.

Norman Finkelstein has hinted at this in talks.

Just look at all the specialists in most fields. They happen to be Jewish because Jewish people are disproportionately well-educated. The problem occurs when many of them have certain political views that create blind spots or discrimination on their part. I wouldn't argue having only Arabs or Muslims cover the Middle East, but there's something off when Charlie Rose has a discussion of the flotilla raid and 4 people are Jewish and 2 are Christian and there are no Arabs/Muslims at all. Even Jon Stewart invites some Zionist jerk whenever there's a crisis in the Middle East and never any Arabs/Muslims.

Many of the correspondents in the Middle East are Jewish and when Israel's carrying out a massacre, they're stationed and protected in Israel; there's an obvious bias in the way Ben Weiderman conveys the news for CBS Evening News or the way Wolf Blitzer (who has Israeli citizenship) questions people on the matter.

The odd thing is that there's a tendency among Christians who try much harder than many Jewish news folks to prove their pro-Israeli credentials in such a climate. A case in point is that Larry King was exceedingly polite to Ahmadinejad, but Charlie Rose was excessively rude, compared to how he treated Karl Rove or George W. Bush. Similarly, Paul Krugman has criticized Israel on "This Week", but George F. Will seems its strongest defender. Anderson Cooper is probably the most anti-Muslim anchor person I've seen on CNN, whitewashing Israel's massacres of Lebanon and Gaza and issuing reports that question looking out for human rights of suspected terrorists in Iraq or Afghanistan -- the kind of reporting that encourages torture and keeping Abu Graib open.

Look, it's not a conspiracy to say there are biases among given ethnic groups; it's a rare thing for a person to criticize those in their ethnic group, and many Jewish people have been exceedingly willing to go against Zionism, and they're real heroes for doing so.

However, to deny that there's a very strong Jewish influence in the media and Hollywood (due to hard work and wealth and, yes, connections) and that, since a huge proportion of this is going to be right wing on Israel, there is going to be a pro-Israeli bias in these media is to deny what's staring us in the face every day.

Even if you don't agree with what I've just said, you can't tell me that what Jon Meacham and Bill Maher said is true. There's no way that the mainstream US media is more pro-Palestinian than pro-Israeli. No way. That's objective fact; it's not conspiracy to dispute their claims.
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Old 06-19-2010, 08:50 AM   #77
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you don't think that people can arrive at their own conclusions, which might be different from yours, all on their own? they're all being blackmailed by the Jews?


Quote:
Look, it's not a conspiracy to say there are biases among given ethnic groups; it's a rare thing for a person to criticize those in their ethnic group, and many Jewish people have been exceedingly willing to go against Zionism, and they're real heroes for doing so.

but you are assuming that these people are incapable of doing their job because of their given ethnic groups and that any position other than your own comes out of cowardice or stupidity or secret "friends" of various people.
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Old 06-19-2010, 02:35 PM   #78
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Originally Posted by Muldfeld View Post
It's the same reasoning I use to figure out why Jon Stewart has moved to the right on Israel; I think it has to do with his friendship with nationalist and pro-Israeli folks like David Gregory (who is Jewish) and Brian Williams (who's Christian) and his inability to criticize them, which, in turn, has made him tepid on Israel. Stephen Colbert (a Christian), though, is far more pro-Israeli. I think, among non-Jews, Holocaust guilt plays a major role and they're trying to look heroic -- as if they would have stopped the Holocaust -- by standing by Israel now, which is a dangerous conflation.[/B]
Maybe I'm watching entirely different programs than what you're watching-I find both Jon and Stephen to be fairly balanced on the Israel/Palestine issue. I know Jon in particular has acknowleged Israel's faults before on his show. They're trying to do what most news media fail to do-actually have some balance.

I definitely agree that the media at large is supportive of Israel and less so of Palestine, but I wouldn't call that a conspiracy. Just that Israel's a strong ally, and we tend to be less critical of our allies. That's all. That, and I think we're still rather wary of the Muslim culture.

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Old 06-19-2010, 03:22 PM   #79
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Now, if there's ever an ethnic group around the world not under siege, it's Jews.


I've read some howlers in FYM before but this one has got to be the biggest.
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Old 06-19-2010, 04:02 PM   #80
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Now, if there's ever an ethnic group around the world not under siege, it's Jews.
Excellent, excellent post sir...except for that one big sentence.
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Old 06-19-2010, 05:03 PM   #81
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That was one sentence. In a post with about 12 paragraphs.

So the least one should do is quote the paragraph.
( If they want at least the appearance of a fair context.)

Quote:
Now, if there's ever an ethnic group around the world not under siege, it's Jews. Perhaps in the Islamic world, especially in repressive regimes, there's some horrible anti-semitism, but one could argue Muslims face far greater discrimination in the West. And far worse than either of these groups are Latinos, then Blacks, then native Americans or other indigenous peoples who have it the worst off.
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Old 06-21-2010, 11:56 PM   #82
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Muldfeld, your whole post was good, though there are some places I'd part company with you and others where I wouldn't go as far. But overall, very well reasoned and thought out post. I don't know what planet anyone denying the influence of Israel and the taboo of questioning Israeli policies is living on, but its not this one.

This really stood out to me as something that needs to be elaborated on:




[QUOTE]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Muldfeld View Post
I don't deny the NRA's influence, but it doesn't matter when it comes to foreign policy -- just as Zionist groups don't matter (as the AARP does) when it comes to health care.
Bingo.

And if the NRA gets a few states to allow some people to carry concealed who are law abiding and just want to look after themselves, well that doesn't affect too many of us. Its certainly fine by me.

I am no fan of a lot of what the NRA does(gun show loophole, tiahart amendment are outrageous), I don't have a membership or a bumper sticker, but compared to something like the Israel lobby? They're NOTHING, NOTHING AND MORE OF NOTHING.

Its between a small segment of the population that truly believes passionately either way on the gun issue, and making foreign policy with implications for every citizen in the entire country and I dare say, the world. Say what you want about the NRA, at least its American citizens influencing American government. The Israel lobby operates at the edges of legality and raises serious loyalty to America questions.To equate the two is intellectual dishonesty.

The Israeli lobby influences members of Congress regardless of party or ideology, and has made it so that even minor questioning of the policies of the State of Israel is to be viewed with a certain assumption toward anti semitism on the part of the critic.

Again, one need look no further than what Pelosi did to Jim Moran when he spoke out.
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Old 10-14-2010, 08:59 AM   #83
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Text by Associated Press unless otherwise noted

MARION, Ohio — In a radio interview, former White House correspondent Helen Thomas acknowledges she touched a nerve with remarks about Israel that led to her retirement. But she says the comments were "exactly what I thought," even though she realized soon afterward that it was the end of her job.

"I hit the third rail. You cannot criticize Israel in this country and survive," Thomas told Ohio station WMRN-AM in a sometimes emotional 35-minute interview that aired Tuesday. It was recorded a week earlier by WMRN reporter Scott Spears at Thomas' Washington, D.C., condominium.

Thomas, 90, stepped down from her job as a columnist for Hearst News Service in June after a rabbi and independent filmmaker videotaped her outside the White House calling on Israelis to get "out of Palestine." She gave up her front row seat in the White House press room, where she had aimed often pointed questions at 10 presidents, going back to Dwight D. Eisenhower.

She has kept a low profile since then.


In the below clip (via Mediaite), Thomas can be heard crying after learning that President Obama condemned her remarks about Israel on the "Today" show, calling them "offensive and out of line."

Helen Thomas Cries When She Learns Of President Obama’s Comments About Her | Mediaite



"I think he was very unfair, and I return the compliment on his remarks," Thomas said. "Reprehensible."

More from the Associated Press:

"(It was) very hard for the first two weeks. After that, I came out of my coma," Thomas said.

Rabbi David Nesenoff, who runs the website rabbilive.com, said he approached Thomas after he'd been at the White House for Jewish Heritage Day on May 27. He asked whether she had any comments on Israel.

"Tell them to get the hell out of Palestine," she replied.

"Remember, these people are occupied and it's their land. It's not Germany, it's not Poland," she continued. Asked where they should go, she answered, "They should go home."

"Where's home?" Nesenoff asked.

"Poland, Germany and America and everywhere else," Thomas replied.

"I told him exactly what I thought," she told Spears.

Spears said during the interview that some accounts left off her reference to America and gave the wrong impression that Thomas was referring to World War II.

"I was not talking about Auschwitz or anything else," she said.

"They distorted my remarks, which they obviously have to do for their own propaganda purposes, otherwise people might wonder why they continue to take Palestinian land," said Thomas, a daughter of Lebanese immigrants who over the years did little to hide her pro-Arab views. There was no explanation of whom "they" referred to.

When she soon began getting calls about her remark, "I said this is the end of my job."

She issued an apology, she told the radio interviewer, because people were upset and she thought she had hurt people. "At the same time, I had the same feelings about Israel's aggression and brutality," Thomas said.

Asked whether she's anti-Semitic, she responded "Baloney!" She said she wants to be remembered for "integrity and my honesty and my belief in good journalism" and would like to work again.

Spears said Thomas granted him the interview because the two had developed a friendship during previous interviews she had done with the station in Marion, 42 miles north of Columbus in central Ohio.

Their discussion also touched on current politics, particularly on women.

Thomas described Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton as "a hawk." "I thought women in politics would have more compassion, be more liberal," Thomas said.

As for Sarah Palin, Thomas said she believed the former Alaska governor and Republican vice presidential candidate was ambitious enough to run for president.

"That would be a tragedy, a national tragedy," she said, describing Palin as "very conservative, reactionary, unbelievable."

Asked about tea party-backed Republican Delaware Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell, Thomas responded with one word: "Frightening."
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Old 10-14-2010, 12:02 PM   #84
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A couple thoughts.

~

I don't take issue with Thomas criticizing Israel. The manner in which she did it was quite blunt, though, and she was even given an opportunity to clairify her remarks and she continued to be blunt. It's just the case of an old lady who just don't give a flying fuck no mo.

~

Yes, it's very hard to criticize Israel publically in the US, unfairly so. Maybe it has to do with the fact that we sell them hundreds of millions of dollars of tanks and planes as a deterrant to Iran (oh, and to level Lebanon and to accidentally turn Palestinian schoolchildren into a fine red paste). Or the fact that a lot of us are afraid of Arabs.

At least from my viewpoint, on the current geopolitical stage Israel is like the high school kid who was pushed around a lot and now has grown up to become an asshole of a police officer. I'm talking post-WWII, by the way, before a poster decides to take that last sentence out of context and remind me that the Holocaust happened. Since the creation of their country, they've been surrounded by countries who seemingly want them to not exist, so it's an understandable reaction, even if it's not just or "the right thing to do."

I wouldn't mind seenig the UN slap them around a bit with some sanctions the next time they decide to do something rash, but the UN is controlled by the security council so that's obviously never going to happen. I do see Israel as a big of a threat to the reigon's stability as Iran is, to be honest.

~

I believe Fox News got Helen Thomas' front-row seat. Not sure if that's an upgrade or a downgrade. Considering the softballs that the White House Press lobs at oh-so-smug, chucklepuss Robert Gibbs, maybe having Fox up there to push Rupert's right-wing agenda isn't a bad idea to balance out the room.

The fact is, though, that the White House Press Corps is pretty much a circlejerk no matter who's in office. Dubya was pushing the limit with all the wacky shit his administration pulled off during those 8 years, and his press guys actually had to field some real hardball questions. Most of the time it isn't like that, though.
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