Emboldened by the success of their candidate, the Times has a rip-roaring double header today (ll/8/12) with ample opportunity to slam Israel and project some negative stereotypes about Jews. The first article, by Middle East Bureau Chief Jodi Rudoren, bears the misleading title “Netanyahu Rushes to Repair Damage With the President” as the pretext for bashing the Israeli prime minister with selective quotes from hand-picked pundits. Here’s Mitchell Barak (a pollster/strategist you’ve probably never heard of): “Netanyahu backed the wrong horse. Whoever is elected prime minister is going to have to handle the US Israel relationship and we all know Netanyahu is not the right guy.” Translation: He’s certainly not the Times’ guy. And here’s Ehud Olmert: “Given what Netanyahu has done these recent months, the question is: Does our prime minister still have a friend in the White House?” Journalistic query: Would it have been ethical to identify Mr. Olmert as a possible opponent of Mr. Netanyahu in the next Israeli election? Here’s Ms. Rudoren herself, editorializing with some classic slurs about the Jews of AIPAC: “And freed from electoral concerns, the second term president may prove likelier to pursue his own path without worry about backlash from Washington’s powerful and wealthy pro-Israel lobby.” What she was thinking: I hope the readers notice that I omitted hook-nosed so as not to appear guilty of lookism. And finally, mirabile dictu, the Times publishes a quote by Bob Zelnick (former ABC correspondent) that totally contradicts everything they strategically printed about Obama before Nov. 6th: “My sense is that he both dislikes and distrusts Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and that he is more likely to use his new momentum to settling scores than to settling issues.” Ipse loquitur.
The front page of the Arts Section has an overview of the annual Israelbash Event at the JCC, aka, The Other Israel Film Festival. From the Times perspective, the word “other” is a misnomer since most of what they normally print concerns the same Israel that is depicted in these films. That would be a bellicose, apartheid country that is primarily an occupying force intent on humiliating innocent Palestinian farmers as they peacefully tend to their olive and lemon trees. The festival was created and paid for by Carol Zabar, wife of the world-renowned expert on lox, and herself a harsh critic of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians. She would know a great deal about this subject, having lived in Jerusalem briefly fifty years ago and undoubtedly being a subscriber to the New York Times. When criticized in previous years, the JCC adamantly insisted that this festival gave equal time to showing films by Arabs that were critical of their leaders’ policies and tactics. Full disclosure: when pressed, they couldn’t name any. This year, the Times reports that the festival is boycotted by Arabs as part of their general refusal to deal with Jews as well as Israelis. Not to worry, there are enough films by Jews and Israelis with plenty of home-grown malice towards the only country in the middle east that offers freedom to gays, equality to women, superior health care (including abortion) and public education for all, citizenship to Palestinians, a unique track record for integrating immigrants and just about every other mandate of the most liberal wing of the democrat party.
There is no mention anywhere in today’s Times about how many missiles were shot into Israel this week or how many terrorists were thwarted from infiltrating its borders, or the fact that the right wing Netanyahu has managed to abstain from any war despite constant provocation. I doubt that there will be a single film shown at the JCC dealing with the traumas of Israeli victims of terrorist incidents and probably nothing dealing with the children and grandchildren of refugee Jews who were dispossessed and expelled from their centuries’ old homes in Arab lands. If you feel even slightly unsettled about this reality, think about getting your news from a more objective purveyor than the moribund Times and buying your lox at Fairway.
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