A very long but worthwhile column regarding the increasingly ridiculous and strident columns by Thomas Friedman, the self described sage of all worldly things. Friedman seems to me to be trying to take advantage of his Jewish name in order to spread the most libelous accusations against Israel as if that would inoculate him of the charge of Jewish dual loyalty. I actually think he is the the opposite of a self-hater, he is a narcissist who is more concerned by what his non Jewish friends say to him at dinner parties about those “stubborn, stiff necked people in Tel Aviv”
by Martin Sherman
‘Robbed Cossack’: Hebrew idiom for a villain who complains about the wrongs (imaginary or not) done to him that he has done to others.
Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided
– Sen. Barack Obama (D-Illinois) at the annual AIPAC conference, June 4, 2008Congress maintains its commitment to relocating the United States Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and urges the President, pursuant to the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995… to immediately begin the process of relocating the United States Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem…. None of the funds authorized to be appropriated by this Act may be available for the publication of any official government document which lists countries and their capital cities unless the publication identifies Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.– Section. 212 of the “Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 2002 and 2003,” relating to “United States policy with respect to Jerusalem as the capital of Israel,” sponsored by Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. (D-Delaware), cosponsor of the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act.[...]Keep these excerpts in mind – their relevance will soon become evident.The cry of the ‘robbed cossack’?
It is, of course, possible to conceive of more deplorable examples of shoddy and shallow journalism than Tom Friedman’s mendacious and misleading rant, titled, “Why not in Vegas?” against Mitt Romney’s visit to Jerusalem this week. However, I must confess, none springs readily to mind.
Friedman launches into his derogatory diatribe by accusing Romney of (gasp) fund-raising. Of course, coming from an Obamaphile, that is rich.
After all, while there may be many reasons for Obama’s victory over Sen. John McCain in 2008, clearly far from the least significant among them was Obama’s massive funding advantage, outdoing his rival by a ratio of over 3:1 – and half-a-billion dollars – after opting out of the public funding option, despite a pledge not to.
People in glass houses
Friedman seems to be particularly upset by the support of Las Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson for Romney.
He attempts to wax sarcastic: “Since the whole trip was not about learning anything but about how to satisfy the political whims of the right-wing, super pro- Bibi Netanyahu, American Jewish casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, why didn’t they just do the whole thing in Las Vegas? “I mean, it was all about how big a jackpot of donations Adelson would shower on the Romney campaign in return.
Vegas would have been so much more appropriate than Jerusalem.
“They could have constructed a plastic Wailing Wall and saved so much on gas.”
Putting aside the tone of misplaced contempt for a moment, one might get the impression that Obama lacks support from like-minded plutocrats such as the shadowy George Soros, who has donated heavily to Obama-philic causes.
So why the disdain? Or is it just that Friedman feels that political opponents have no right to their positions and, hence, all attempts to enlist resources to promote them are to be belittled and besmirched.
Obama has engaged in intensive efforts to raise funds abroad. According to one source, “Obama has out-raised [Romney] almost 3:1 from ‘off-shore donors.’” The Wall Street Journal reported that an “invitation for an August fund-raiser asked guests to join “Americans Abroad for Obama and special guest George Clooney for a reception in Geneva,” with dinner costing $20,000 a head, or $30,000 a couple.
The Hollywood Reporter also mentions the Clooney event, and gives details of Obama’s fund-raising efforts in… China.
So perhaps a plastic replica of the Great Wall of China in Hollywood would suffice?
Doubletalk, double standards
Friedman seems to have taken particular umbrage at Romney’s statement designating “Jerusalem [as] the capital of Israel.” He jeered that “it was all about money – how much Romney would abase himself by saying whatever the Israeli right wanted to hear.”
Really, Tom? Take a look at the introductory excerpts above, espoused by the president and vice president – not only designating Jerusalem as the capital of Israel but averring that it should remain undivided.
Indeed, in light of these unequivocal declarations as to the indivisible unity of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, would Friedman suggest that the Obama-Biden duo were “abasing themselves by saying whatever the Israeli Right wanted to hear” when they made them? Or were they “abasing themselves by saying whatever the Israeli Left (and the Palestinians) wanted to hear” when they went back on them?
Shades of Walt and Mearsheimer
Friedman continues his Stephen Walt- John Mearsheimer-compliant Judeophobic bluster that he began when he alleged that the standing ovations Netanyahu received during his 2011 address to the US Congress were “bought and paid for by the Israel lobby.”
In his new article, he writes: “The main Israel lobby, AIPAC, has made itself the feared arbiter of which lawmakers are ‘pro’ and which are ‘anti-Israel’ and, therefore, who should get donations and who should not – and you have a situation in which there are almost no brakes, no red lights, around Israel coming from America anymore.”
So there you have it. According to Friedman, the Jews control US foreign policy and America is no more than a banana republic, where elected representatives are willing to sell their nation’s – and hence their constituents’ – interests to the highest bidder and can be bought by conniving Judeo-plutocrats – with hooked noses? What more could subscribers to the Walt-Mearsheimer doctrine ask for? But perhaps – just perhaps – Friedman, in his (il)liberal arrogance, is missing a point that Romney isn’t.
Clearly, the idea of placing a wedge between the US and Israel was a deliberate choice of the current Democratic administration. And it is not entirely implausible to surmise that – judging from the tenor of some of his previous articles – Friedman had a role to play in the conception of the “wedge/daylight policy.”
Having helped create the problem, he now bemoans the consequences.
‘You didn’t get there on your own’
Friedman’s bile and bias are evident in his attempt to belittle Israel’s technological achievements and entrepreneurial culture; and his chiding Romney for comparing it favorably with the Palestinian culture. Although he does acknowledge that “Israel today is an amazing beehive of innovation [and] something Jews should be proud of,” he attributes this – in the best “you didn’t get there on your own” tradition – in large measure to “an influx of Russian brainpower [and] massive US aid.”
But the Palestinians have received massive international aid for over two decades and have not been able to achieve anything approaching economic stability. So maybe it is a cultural thing, which by the way is why there was such an influx of Russian brain power.
Until Friedman realizes this, he will not be able to make any useful contribution to the discussion, beyond the fatuous, feckless and fraudulent offerings he has provided up to now.