Blaming Israel First – by P. David Hornik


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From Van Jones to Valerie Jarrett, the Obama has made a series of politically extreme personnel appointments that it has since come to regret. Its latest hire bids fair to continue the pattern. President Obama has appointed an “anti-Semitism czar,” Hannah Rosenthal, who appears singularly unqualified for the job. Her first target of criticism has not been an anti-Semitic exponent or event. Rather, it is Israel’s Jewish ambassador to the U.S., Michael Oren, who has drawn her ire for the offense of disparaging a liberal group with which Rosenthal has been affiliated.

Not surprisingly for a liberal-Democratic administration, Rosenthal has a liberal-Democratic background. She worked for the Department of Health and Human Services during the Clinton administration, and in 1992 and 1996 was a leader of the Wisconsin Clinton-Gore campaigns. From 2000 to 2005 she was executive director of the liberal Jewish Council for Public Affairs. More recently she’s been on the advisory council of the ostensibly “pro-Israel, pro-peace” J Street and JStreetPAC.

Ideally, it shouldn’t matter. Isn’t “to monitor and combat anti-Semitism”—from the “anti-Semitism czar’s” official job title—a bipartisan concern for Jews and a consensus concern for all decent people? Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. Some Jews define themselves highly invidiously in opposition to other Jews. Rosenthal appears to be one of them.

As the Jewish Press noted in an editorial,

“Speaking several years ago on the sharp increase in anti-Semitic incidents in Europe after the outbreak of the Second Intifada, [Rosenthal] said:

“‘I’ll tell you point-blank; I have two grown daughters, and I didn’t think that my kids were going to have to deal with the same anti-Semitism that I did as the daughter of Holocaust survivors. It’s a scary time, with people losing the ability to differentiate between a Jew, any Jew, and what’s going on in Israel.’”

As Michael Goldfarb observes,

“Parse that quote and it’s pretty clear what Rosenthal is saying—the Israelis have it coming, but the rest of the world needs to distinguish between the good progressive Jews who are not living on Palestinian land and the Israeli Jews who are committing daily atrocities in the name of colonialism and occupation.”

To that must be added Rosenthal’s affiliation, in itself, with J Street. Indeed, the Obama administration likes J Street and sent National Security Adviser James Jones to give the keynote address at its October conference. That doesn’t change the fact that J Street has taken strange positions such as favoring the staging of the anti-Semitic play Seven Jewish Children and the (abortive) appointment of the anti-Israeli diplomat Chas Freeman as chairman of the National Intelligence Council.

Or as Israeli ambassador Michael Oren recently put it, J Street is “a unique problem in that it not only opposes one policy of one Israeli government, it opposes all policies of all Israeli governments….” As Oren went on to note, that has included criticizing Israel’s campaign in Gaza last winter, calling to include Hamas in peace talks, failing to reject the Goldstone report, and opposing sanctions on Iran.

And it is Hannah Rosenthal’s recent criticism of Oren’s remarks that has prompted a storm of anger and protest from Israeli and U.S. officials as well as American Jewish leaders.

Last week Rosenthal told Israel’s left-wing daily Haaretz that Oren’s statements against J Street were “most unfortunate” and that Oren, who declined J Street’s invitation to speak at its October conference, “would have learned a lot” by participating.

In response, Haaretz reports in a subsequent article, “Senior Israeli officials told their American colleagues that it was unacceptable for an administration official to publicly criticize Israel’s ambassador over his relationship with Jewish organizations.”

For its part, “the White House asked the State Department to issue a clarification notice.” And “Alan Solow, chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations and a confidant of…Obama issued a condemnation of Rosenthal’s remarks, casting doubt over her ability to fulfill her responsibilities as an opponent of anti-Semitism.”

While the complaints rightly focus on the inappropriateness of the anti-Semitism czar’s criticism of the Israeli ambassador, there is much else in Rosenthal’s quoted remarks to Haaretz that calls into question her suitability for her new post.

As when—apparently also in connection to Oren’s declining to address J Street—she “said she opposes blurring the lines between anti-Semitism and criticism of Israel. ‘It is not 1939,’ she said. ‘We have the state of Israel. We have laws in countries that are holding people accountable.’” This appears oddly inane, since Oren has never accused J Street of anti-Semitism.

Or when she says:

“We need to have as many people coming together to try and put an end to this crisis, the matzav [i.e., Israel’s ongoing conflict with some of its neighbors] cannot continue—it’s unacceptable and that’s why I always paid my membership to AIPAC, but I have always paid my membership to Americans for Peace Now—because they all need to be supported and they all need to be at the table.”

Or:

“I lived in Israel in 1973 in the bomb shelters. I don’t want my kids or my grandchildren to have to ever come visit their homeland and to live in a bomb shelter—that is what I mean when I say the matzav…. Sometimes I wonder what it does to the psyche of people and children to know that they have to know where the nearest bomb shelter is—that’s not okay. As a peace loving person and as a Jew who wants my kids to feel comfortable here—I think that’s what I mean that the matzav cannot continue.”

It’s peculiarly muddled, but she seems to be saying that everyone should be open to, and ultimately embrace, a liberal-dovish view of Israel’s conflict with some of its neighbors, because then the conflict would go away. Finding the situation “unacceptable,” not wanting children to live near bomb shelters or even be exposed to them on a visit, is somehow connected to ending the conflict. In other words, it’s Jews—bad Jews like Oren, or the Israeli government—who are responsible for keeping it going.

For the anti-Semitism czar, the enemy of the Jews or at least of Israel is not the anti-Semites, the violent attackers of Israel, but the Jews themselves – or at least the bad ones who don’t embrace J Street’s outlook and even find it objectionable.

That means Rosenthal lacks exactly what she ought to have: a clear, reality-attuned grasp of the actual, grim situation of Jew-and Israel-hatred in today’s world. And it means the Obama administration has failed to make a wise choice even for the seemingly nonpartisan task of “monitoring and combating anti-Semitism.” Instead, it has appointed a left-wing partisan who promotes the liberal delusions that help anti-Semitism thrive.

  • bubba4

    “anti-Semitism czar”? Get over yourselves.

    There is no such thing…I wanted to find out which department she actually worked for since FPM doesn't bother to tell us and all the other neoconish jews beating up this lady all call her Czar.

    Here's how the breakdown actually goes: State Department » Department for Democracy and Global Affairs » Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor » Office To Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism

    Get it? The State Department is a cabinet level position…so even it doesn't have a “Czar”.

    If the waiter at a restaurant doesn't bring Hornik his bread fast enough, he probably gets accused of being an anti-semite. The Jews that write for FPM need to get over themselves. America already goes above and beyond for Israel. For whatever reason you don't like this woman and you are trying to smear her and misrepresent what she says.

    Remember the commandment, “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor”.

  • Robert Bernier

    The left and the Jewish state.
    Anti-Semitic leaders have disguised their appeal to base instinct by pretending that they are actually appealing to sublime aspirations. In the case of the Nazis for instance, Adolf Hitler and Josef Goebbels appealed to Germanic pride and love for the Fatherland. Today, the Left appeals to people’s aspirations for peace and justice. In their obsession they preach that only by permitting and indeed enabling Jews to die and the Jewish state to be destroyed that “peace” can be secured and the Palestinians can receive “justice.” Israel should not hide its head in the sand. Consult : http://israelagainstterror.blogspot.com/2008/10

  • George Albert

    Well, you sir are a blithering idiot. I guess if someone criticizes Israel for, well, allowing its people to, say, build a house, you would think that has nothing to do with Jew hating; but when you built a house, did you get critisized for wanting four walls and a roof to protect you family from the elements? The fact is that 90% of the basic criticism of Israel is for allowing Jews to be considered as humans with the same right to self determination as other humans. You are against that based on religion/race and that makes you a Jew hater. Consider this a figurative punch in the face

  • antifascist18

    Obama knew he'd have a pliant stooge to rubber stamp his Judea-Samaria Judenrein and pro-Hamas policies with another self-hater ala Emanuel, that's why this stupid cow was hired in the first place.

    After all, a Nazi-collaborator paid off dick like BonZo must have a stooge from a Nazi-Collaborator paid off J Street to conduct his “combat” (yeah, like he combats Islamic terrorism) anti-Semitism…none better than J Street groupie and professional loudmouth Hannah Rosenthal.

    A classic case of the fox guarding the hen house…

    As for those in the Jewish community who cry about Bernie Madoff and that he deserves to be in jail, well, what about a worse slimebag like Soros?

  • antifascist18

    bubba,

    you're an ignoramus – not to mention a “fascist”…

    you gave away your Jew-hate with the use of the euphenism “Neo-Con”.

    FYI, buddy – the NeoConservatives are patriots who were responsible for electing a GREAT American President, Ronald Reagan. You are just another worthless piece of Jew-baiting manure that a dic like Obama wears on his carpet slippers.

    Go back to Germany, dic – you can always join your Uncle Adolf – six feet under.

  • antifascist18

    George,

    Well said. Interesting how Obama is stone silent when it comes to girls being raped and murdered and students shot down on the streets of Tehran, but how he screeches like the monkey he is when it comes to a Jew building a home or a room for his family on land that was – and is – Jewish from Time Immemorial.

    That being said, that Fascist girlieboy “bubba4″ is ILLEGALLY occupying Native American land. He needs to fess up, GET OUT, and go back to Europe, or to hell, depends on how you look at it. He can always drop off his “plantation slave” Obama at Darfur so he can see how Blacks fare under Islam.

  • http://www.facebook.com/YDS.clarespark Clare Spark

    I am not surprised that Rosenthal is the child of survivors. Psychologists understand that they are often a special category of sufferers. In addition, there are the cultural factors associated with Jews: see http://clarespark.com/2009/11/17/melencolia-i-a…,

  • LucyQ

    How strange…..I lived in Israel in 1972 and '73 and never had to go to a bomb shelter except for the Yom Kipper war in which Egypt attacked Israel.

    Rosenthal is another sick kapo Jew found on the right and left spectrum who rather be a good American than a good Jew. She is exactly like Hitler's kapo Jews who helped him incinerate 'bad' Jews so the good ones like her can 'lead.' But, as we all know, Hitler turned on all Jews in the end. Rosenthal is nothing more than a 'house' Jew.

  • antifascist18

    Oh wow, LucyQ the Obamist is blasting Hannah Rosenthal…LOL.

    Hey Earth to Lucy – Since you spew pro-Obama crap here, maybe it is time for you to do some deep thinking. Why do you think Obama and Clinton hired this dumb stupid turd of a girl in the first place? His policies are so unbelieveably anti-Israel yet your types on the Left continue to keep your ostrich necks deep in the sand.

    When you do have the intellectual courage to ask why he hired this girl, along with Samantha Power, Jimmy Jones, Malley, and self-haters like Emanuel, Mara Rudman, Rosa Brooks, Jacob Lew, also ask yourself this – why is he so fixated on where a Jew can live instead of denouncing the rapine and murder of women in Iran by his (and Biden's) friends – the Iranian Revolutionary Guards?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Cowfy-Kaufman/1199851080 Cowfy Kaufman

    i know you won't publish this but i must make the comment.i wish that dumb cunt would go home.

  • LucyQ

    Well,kapo, it's real simple: I don't like president's of either party who have lousy, anti-Semitic policies whether it's Obama, Bush, jr, Carter or Bush, sr. Only a kapo Jew like you continue to have an affinity for rightwing presidents like Bush who demanded all Jewish residents including farmers abandon Gaza.

    I thought Reagan was wrong to arm Pakistan with nukes, one of the dumbest moves of our presidents but you most likely liked the fact that Reagan was arming an Islamic nation with nukes although you would have been loudly whining if Carter or Obama did the same….that's why you're still a kapo.

  • cjkcjk

    From the skank above: “right and left spectrum who rather be a good American than a good Jew.” If you live in the USA then get the fu*k out you bastard. I for one am a good American who completely supports Israel and Zionism. I know many good Jews who consider themselves good Americans without any internal conflict. I for one equate being a 'good American' at these present times with complete support for Israel in it's struggle against the worshipers of a murderous pedophile profit.
    Needless to say I consider the Man-Child and most of those who support him to be bad Americans.

  • cndfox

    I for one personally respect anyone that has the intelligence and open mindedness to question or criticize their culture or religion, rather than “blindly follow” the “propaganda of the past”. And reading her quotes? She makes perfect sense in what she is saying. But your “biased interpretations” need some work, because you are not even close to what she is saying.

  • cndfox

    One other thing (after reading some of the more “radical” posts). Have any of you “human beings” ever read Robert Littel's book “Vicious Circle”? It is an excellent narratvie on why the Middle East is the mess it is. And many of you are perfect examples of why that “Vicious Circle” is reality. And why there will never be peace there.

  • andrewnitzberg

    Please read the quotes more closely. While the 'interpretation' is a bit strong, it is close enough to define a narrative that needs to be heard.

    That narrative is: many left-wing Jews don't want responsibility attributed to them for Israel and Israeli policies. Therefore they argue twice as hard that Israel is always wrong and condemn Israel regardless of the specifics of a situation and they want Israel gone, ended, and buried.

    This Ms. Rosenthal 'Czar' is clearly in the category of 'court jew' or 'kapo'. The blacks have the 'orepo', black on the outside and white on the inside. The Hispanics have the 'coconuts', brown on the outside white on the inside. The Asians have the 'Banana', yellow on the outside etc.

    The problem is the same for this situation as it is for many others. The 'Jew on the outside and Leftist on the inside' [court jew, kapo, Oreo, Coconut, Banana, etc] gives cover and support to the real jew-haters. The ISM makes particular use of these people.

    The issue regarding President Obama, of course, is that he has chosen as his representative to the Jewish community and anti-semitism czar an ALLY of the jew-haters. Why can't Obama find someone who hates racism to represent him rather than someone who hates Israel?

  • andrewnitzberg

    It must be noted that many left-wing Jews don't want responsibility attributed to them for Israel and Israeli policies. Therefore they argue twice as hard that Israel is always wrong and condemn Israel regardless of the specifics of a situation and they want Israel gone, ended, and buried.

    This Ms. Rosenthal 'Czar' is clearly in the category of 'court jew' or 'kapo'. The blacks have the 'oreo', black on the outside and white on the inside. The Hispanics have the 'coconuts', brown on the outside white on the inside. The Asians have the 'Banana', yellow on the outside etc.

    The problem is the same for this situation as it is these many others. She; [the 'Jew on the outside and Leftist on the inside', court jew, kapo, Oreo, Coconut, Banana, etc] gives cover and support to the real jew-haters. The ISM makes particular use of these people.

    The issue regarding President Obama is, of course, that he has chosen as his representative to the Jewish community and anti-semitism czar an ALLY of the jew-haters. Why can't Obama find someone who hates racism to represent him rather than someone who hates Israel? And why not someone who is not at all a hater?

  • andrewnitzberg

    You seem to be arguing over the definition of 'czar' for the Obama administration.

    Just because the State Department has a cabinet-level 'secretary of state' at the top does not mean that responsibilities for one issue [in this case the issue is one form of racism] are not gathered into the responsibility of one person. That person is often called an 'ombudsman' or something similar. President Obama likes to use the label 'Czar'.

    That being the case, it seems you have no point except tbat “jews complain too much”. Not an attractive point for you to make.

  • antifascist18

    Well, hon, if I'm a Kapo, which I'm most assuredly not, you're a Fascist. Now, while that could be discussed you are most definitely retarded.
    The first President Bush was most assuredly an idiot, if not downright anti-Semitic. Like Obama he picked doozies for both his National Security Adviser and Secretary of State – Scowcroft and Baker respectively – and interestingly enough your hero Obama loves THEM!

    His son an anti-Semite? Well, sis, you're full of crap. He overruled both Powell (when he had that Obamist lapse in judgment before the Muktada) and the Rice who is still infinitely better than your Rice – Susie, who like Hannah Rosenthal is a dumbshit.

    Also sis, you had better get your facts straight. Bush was stunned when Ariel Sharon the Patton who became Pillsbury decided to drive out the Jews in Gaza. President Bush had nothing to do with it, in fact he advised Israel not to unless there were clear signs the Palys in Gaza would not resort to violence.

    Contrast that with you BOY Obama, that piece of cuckolded crap named Hillary, and General Jimmy Jones USMC-DISGRACE, who are demanding that Jews leave their homeland. Still going to vote Dem, honey?

  • Israel

    It is hypocritical that people like Abe Foxman can criticize social justice issues of immigration, and racism within America, yet totally ignore systematic racism within Israel and the occupied territories. But that debate is besides the point. History will judge Israel's actions. The biggest detractors, nor the most prominent backers of the policies of Israel today is going to be writing, or studying Middle East history in the coming centuries. Nor do they know the future of Israel! Yet those same detractors, and backers of Israeli policy will be judge just the same as the policies they encouraged. And the effect they had on Israel!

  • bubba4

    “you're an ignoramus – not to mention a “fascist”…”

    Yep, that's the kind of entitled, knee-jerk reaction I was talking about…very nice.

    “you gave away your Jew-hate with the use of the euphenism “Neo-Con”.”

    Um…”neocon” doesn't have much to do with the jews.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoconservatism

    It's not a racial insult anymore than calling you a douchebag. OK…buddy? Nothing pleases me more than some bumpkin coming around to call me a moron, when you clearly don't know what the hell you are talking about. You should just write…WHHHHAAAAA!!!

    “go back to Germany”? …you're like a little child running around with a pair of scissors.

  • bubba4

    “The fact is that 90% of the basic criticism of Israel is for allowing Jews to be considered as humans with the same right to self determination as other humans.”

    So basically, I post…saying that Horowitz and others writers on this website behave as if Israel and Jews in general are beyond criticism. You post telling me that any criticism (and I didn't even offer one) is trying to deny jews their human rights…and thus I'm a “hater”.

    You and antifascist18 are just determined to be examples of what I'm talking about aren't you? It's true that the Arabs in the Middle East would love to see Israel destroyed and every jew killed. But one irrational cultic hate doesn't justify another.

  • bubba4

    “You seem to be arguing over the definition of 'czar' for the Obama administration.”

    It's just shorthand for the heads of Departments that don't rise to Cabinet level positions.

    “Just because the State Department has a cabinet-level 'secretary of state' at the top does not mean that responsibilities for one issue [in this case the issue is one form of racism] are not gathered into the responsibility of one person.”

    Um..ok..so every head of every government office of every department is a Czar? Yep, that's pretty meaningless…

    “President Obama likes to use the label 'Czar'.”

    Riiiiight…FPM would have loved to called them by their official names…but this is what the President likes….LOL. FPM has been “Czar this…” and “Czar that…” and “all these Czars are unprecedented and scary.” Like Glen Beck, the political shorthand “Czar” wasn't used to inform but to kick up dust and imply that Obama is foreign and scary and doing things that no other President has dared do. They did it all year. If you want a slew of intellectual dishonest editorials about this…check out the FPM archive. You may not mind, but my criticism of the “article” was pretty clear…it is devoid of any real information. Just get the fact that you are suppose to hate this lady and it will at least be a success in your case.

    “That being the case, it seems you have no point except tbat “jews complain too much”. Not an attractive point for you to make.”

    You've almost got it…but not quite. This may not shut everyone up…you need to come out of the gate calling me a Nazi or something…then everyone will know you are “serious”. If the FPM editors don't like someone…they can just write up an article about how that person is an anti-semite. They don't even have to dress it up any and you guys are already shoveling it down your gullets.

  • http://samsonblinded.org/news/ ilona@israel

    i dont belive that obama is anti-semit. sure he is not he is too indifferent about this question-question of nationality. but as for his policy-i even cant call it anti-israel, for example he told: 'we cant prevent attac of israel' -which actually means -we not gonna fight with iran but we will let israel to do this.

  • andrewnitzberg

    I won't continue this debate beyond this response”

    (i) Yes, I agree. The use of thhe term 'czar' is largely meaningless and people should be referred to by their actual titles. But President Obama started calling such [policy-making appointees who circumvent the Senate approval process mandated in the US Constitution] czars and the media has continued.

    (ii) Using the wors 'czar' in reference to such Obama appointees is not racist. It does not suggest that President Obama is 'foreign' or 'strange'. The word Czar has been a part of the American llexicon for decades and does not actually suggest 'strange' or 'foreign'. What was the name of the fellow appointed by Reagan as 'Education Czar' or something? He wrote some book, “Bedtime Stories for Conservatives”. This should be checked; my memory is less than perfect.

    (iii) Regarding my characterizing your main point as, 'Jews complain too much' I point out that I did not use the language of exclusion or hatred (no hegemonic speech from me) and call you any names.

    You wrote, “If the waiter at a restaurant doesn't bring Hornik his bread fast enough, he probably gets accused of being an anti-semite. The Jews that write for FPM need to get over themselves. America already goes above and beyond for Israel. “

    I think it is fair to understand your underlying point as 'Jews complain too much.'

    A friend of mine likes to point out that the Nazi party in 1933 polled less than 1/3 of the vote but a coalition put Hitler into power. His history is a bit strained, but I would like to adapt that to suggest: Just because you are not a Nazi or a skinhead does not mean you do not harbor non-tolerant attitiudes towards Jews. Your denouncing supporters of israel and American Jews as verbal extremists who use accusations of Nazi-ism and White supremacism to silence critics offers demonstrates your own affinity fot 'Hegemonic speech' (speech meant to shut up those with whom you do not agree) and this 'speech intended to silence' supports my understanding of your basic point which is ' Jews complain too much and they should shut up'.

    If you choose to respond, please address what i have written and not invent your own fictional straw-man arguments.

  • bubba4

    “I think it is fair to understand your underlying point as 'Jews complain too much.'”

    If you want to call that “understanding”. We are talking about a particular little cadre of loudly self-declared jews who spend much of their professional time seeking out people to slap with the anti-semite label. It's really easy to do. Just look at you. You even squeeze in the Nazis…lol.

    “Just because you are not a Nazi or a skinhead does not mean you do not harbor non-tolerant attitiudes towards Jews.”

    Riiiiight…because EVERYONE is anti-semite…which is my point…that's insane. You don't ASSUME someone is racist against you until that person can prove otherwise. Read this other guy's post…he thinks that “neo-con” is a slight against jews!

    “Your denouncing supporters of israel and American Jews as verbal extremists who use accusations of Nazi-ism and White supremacism to silence critics offers demonstrates your own affinity fot 'Hegemonic speech'”

    Wow..you veer way outside the curve on every single point. I was criticizing Horowitz and FPM…not all jews everywhere…always….jeez. And you throw in all this other stuff just for good measure…no one said any of that…maybe you are harboring some feelings yourself. I was making a snarky comment to Horowitz and the other guys after reading back to back to back to back articles on how the US just isn't doing enough for Israel….ending with an article on how the new head of the “anti-anti-semitism” office was an anti-semite! Lighten up cupcake…

    Lastly, you need to figure out what a “strawman” is. My first quote of you above is a strawman.

    “verbal extremists who use accusations of Nazi-ism and White supremacism” – another strawman

    “…your basic point which is ' Jews complain too much and they should shut up”. – another strawman

    Most of the people on this board write in 60-80% strawmen arguments. Try not following up a string of exaggerated points asking me to please not exaggerate your points. I haven't and I don't. No need.

  • andrewnitzberg

    While your last response has no impact upon my understanding of your original words, I don't want to make this comments page my life's work.

    You might want to review your last comment and notice that you seem quite angry about 'The Jews'. My original suggestion, that you seem to believe that 'The Jews complain too much' stikes me as finding further support in your subsequent entries.

    Case in point: you write, “I was criticizing Horowitz and FPM…not all jews everywhere…always.” You do seem to associate conservatives with Jews and excessive complaints.

    I have little idea of who you are as a person, just a brief window through your writings. And the theme of 'Jewish complainers' does run through your writings here.
    Please note. you wrote: “

  • bubba4

    no need to continue. I said no criticism of Horowitz or FPM or jews in general can be made without being called an anti-semite and you've been proving it.