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December 21, 2014 1:27 pm

Hannukah Greetings From The New York Times

avatar by Jerold Auerbach

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CAMERA billboard compares The New York Times to terror group Hamas.

The New York Times, owned by Jews named Sulzberger ever since Adolph Ochs purchased the floundering newspaper in 1896, might have passed along Hanukkah greetings to its Jewish readers and to the world’s only Jewish state. Yet within five days it launched a three-article fusillade, supplemented by an editorial, castigating Israel. No surprise that each article was written by a Jew.

Predictably, Thomas Friedman launched the assault (12/16). Still mired in the left-wing Peace Nowism of his undergraduate years at Brandeis, when he was a student leader of Breira (the ideological antecedent of J-Street), Friedman warned against “West Bank settlers and scary religious-nationalist zealots.” Sounding rather zealous himself, he offered his dire forecast that the new government to be elected in March “will lead Israel into a dark corner, increasingly alienated from Europe, America and the next generation of American Jews.” Its best policy option is to embrace the “Israeli-designed traffic management application Waze.com.” Check it out.

Four days later Jodi Rudoren, following in Friedman’s ideological footsteps as Jerusalem Bureau Chief, contributed a feminist propaganda piece. Ostensibly celebrating retiring Maj. Gen Orna Barbivai, the highest ranking woman in IDF history, Rudoren took cheap pot-shots at the “testosterone-driven institution” that carved out a “pink ghetto” – while winning every war foisted upon it since 1948. Israel, she conceded, is “the only nation with a gender-neutral draft,” quickly adding: “but that may sound more equal than it is.”

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Yet even Rudoren acknowledges that women comprise “more than half of Israel’s military officers” – compared with 17 percent in her American homeland. She neglects to mention that women served in the military prior to Israeli independence; and ever since 1948 they have filled combat roles, which American army women have yet to do. By contrast, the first American four-star female general led the Army Material Command that supplies soldiers with equipment, outfits, and arms – not exactly a front-line position. Frozen in her feminist categories, Rudoren can only compare General Barbivai’s military career with “beneficiaries of affirmative action.”

By Shabbat Hanukkah the Times Editorial Board was prepared to weigh in against Israel. Evidently horrified, as Friedman was, that voters in the democratic Jewish state might re-elect a right-wing prime minister in March, editorial page editor Andrew Rosenthal guided “The Embattled Dream of Palestine” into print. It cited “the Palestinians’ longing for a self-governing homeland” – which they rejected as far back as 1937, again in 1947 with the UN Partition Plan, at the Camp David Summit in 2000, and with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s 2008 Peace Plan. In Foreign Minister Abba Eban’s memorably accurate phrase, they “never missed an opportunity to miss an opportunity.”

But Israel, according to Times editors, is to blame. They warn of dire consequences “if Israel adopts a new law under consideration emphasizing the country’s Jewishness over democracy.” But the new Basic Law proposal does no such thing: it equates their importance. Lamenting “stalled” negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (but declining to specify who stalled them), the editorial blamed Israel for “narrowing the space for a peace deal by expanding settlements” – although Palestinians rejected peace deals decades before the first settlement was built.

I was reminded of the trenchant observation by Rabbi Eliezer Waldman, one of the founders of the restored Jewish community in Hebron following the Six-Day War. Some thirty years ago he succinctly reminded me that “the largest Jewish settlement in the Middle East” is the State of Israel.

The crescendo of Times criticism came on the sixth day of Hanukkah. In the lead Sunday Review article, Roger Cohen asked “What Will Israel Become?” His answer was a foregone conclusion, appropriately fed to him by Amos Oz, Israel’s foremost left-wing fiction writer, identified by Cohen as “the conscience of a liberal and anti-Messianic Israel.” Absent a two-state solution, Oz predicted, there will either be a single “Arab state” or “an Israeli nationalist dictatorship, suppressing the Palestinians and . . . its Jewish opponents.” With hysteria like this, who needs analysis?

Cohen tries. “Tolerance is under attack as a wave of Israeli nationalism unfurls and settlements grow,” he laments. But even an Israel “bent on Jewish supremacy” can yet be rescued by implementation of the partition proposal rejected by Palestinians after the Six-Day War. To be sure, it would return Israel (Abba Eban again) to pre-war “Auschwitz borders.” Does Cohen care?

Perhaps by the eighth day of Hanukkah The New York Times will remind its readers that Jewish settlement in the Land of Israel defined Zionism even before Theodor Herzl published The Jewish State in 1896, the year that Adolph Ochs purchased the Times. But nearly 120 years later a Times conversion seems unlikely.

P.S.  Adding yet another brick to its  wall of liberal Jewish wailing in the Sunday Times Magazine (12/21),  reporter Jason Horowitz was riveted by the tedious lament of a Washington rabbi who feels shamed by Israel and bemoans the fate of “the greatest ethical tradition in history” as it is “dragged through the mud” by Right-wing politicians and settlers. The Times, like the Palestinians it so admires, never misses an opportunity to castigate Israel – especially during Hanukkah.

Jerold S. Auerbach is a frequent contributor to The Algemeiner

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  • rulierose

    ’67 borders? did I miss the part where the Palestinians agreed to even those borders?

    it would be interesting if Israel called their bluff and said OK, we’ll give back everything, just to see what they’d do.

    I mean, does anyone seriously expect that Fatah–much less Hamas–would lay down their arms? or that Abbas would announce that Israel has a right to exist (let alone as a so-called “Jewish state”)? of course not.

    if we have learned anything in the last few years, it is that the “occupied” land the Palestinians refer to extends all the way from the Galilee in the north to the Negev in the south. Tel Aviv and Haifa are just as much settlements as anyplace in the West Bank.

    • Streelsh

      The pre June 5 1967 armistice lines – NOT “borders” because borders are recognized boundaries – were the result of the 1950 Jordanian Israeli Armistice Agreement which EXPLICITLY ( Article #2) stated that the lines were NOT to be considered political borders so don’t call them BORDERS.( they are ARMISTICE Lines) They are as misleading and just as much of a pejorative as referring to Jewish communities as “settlements”; or to referring to Jewish residents as “settlers” or to referring to Judea and Samaria as” the West Bank”

  • I don’t get it. Why is the NY Times referred to as a Jewish-owned newspaper? Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr. has been publisher and board chairman for over 15 years now, and he’s not Jewish. Only his father was Jewish.

  • It’s called ‘Fratricide’…T.Friedman, N. Chomsky, R.Emmanuel, Axelrod, P.Beinhart, M.Blumenthal,Soros, J Street and all the too-many other anti-Israel secular-leftist Dybbukim. Jewish names but poison hearts.

  • Robert Davis

    Almost every time jewish get in a very prominent political or near political position they turn against jews the sulzberger are no diffeent whether they are still jews or episcopalians because they are so afraid to draw hostility from the mainstream! The sulzberger and the nynazi times are cowards and cupid. I never buy it anyway.

  • Andi Ziegelman

    Kudos to Jerald
    Auerbach
    Thanks for all the information in your article.

  • Lauren Goldman

    The New York Times; Al Jazeera’s other publication.

  • For sure, the “New York Times” and so many Americans are deeply confused about the status of the Jewish People in “Eretz Israel.” And, also many Jewish Americans (or so-called Jewish Americans like Thomas Friedman) are also dead wrong on this key topic.

    The evident fact is that today Americans live in a vast country that was — in most cases — brutally taken from the native Peoples of the Americas. This was mostly a “stealing” of the land that occurred not only in the 17th and 18th centuries, but also notably throughout almost all of the 19th century — even as Jewish immigrants were then starting to pour into New York from Eastern Europe. The way the settlers of European origin had roughly pushed aside the aboriginal Peoples of the USA is a bitter and tragic tale that today makes for difficult reading.

    Where the “New York Times” and so many Jewish Americans and others get things completely wrong is to imagine that the Jews of “Eretz Israel” are to be likened to the European “cowboys,” while the Mideast Arabs are to be compared with the North American “Indians.” In fact, it is exactly the other way around, because — of all extant Peoples — the Jewish People clearly has the strongest claim to be aboriginal to “Eretz Israel.”

    http://www.allenzhertz.com/2009/11/aboriginal-rights-to-israel.html

    There, in “Eretz Israel” the specifically “Jewish” People was born by self-identification some 26 centuries ago. From that time until today, there has never been a single year when then self-identified “Jews” were entirely absent from their aboriginal homeland, where today they are once again the majority of the local population.

    Throughout those long centuries, there were always then self-identified “Jews” in “Eretz Israel” and also in the broader Mideast — in fact, no fewer than one million around 1900 CE. Today, descendants of those Mideast Jews live mostly in “Eretz Israel.”

    The Jewish People’s continuous and continuing claim to “Eretz Israel” antedates the birth of Europe and of the Islamic civilization. The story of the Jewish People’s relationship to “Eretz Israel” has nothing to do with European colonialism. Thus, whether a thousand years ago or today, Jews returning to live with other Jews in “Eretz Israel” are not to be compared to the 17th-century Pilgrim Fathers who peculiarly went to build English “settlements” in America, where they had neither native kin nor ancestors. Nor can the Jewish People in its own aboriginal homeland be compared to the Dutch “Boers” in South Africa or the French “colons” in Algeria. In either instance, the Boers and the colons were just alien colonists who never ever amounted to more than a small minority of the local population.

    It is perhaps a wonderful thing to approach history and politics with an eye to ethics and morality. However, it is odious to proudly cultivate a distinct worldview that persistently targets the Jewish People and/or Israel and persistently applies to the Jewish People and/or Israel a standard more exigent than regularly applied to other Peoples and countries, in the same or similar circumstances. Make no mistake — such a persistent pattern of discrimination really does amount to “antisemitism,” whether practiced by Jews or gentiles.

    As an historically-victimized population, the Jewish People is undoubtedly owed: firstly, a sincere apology; secondly, significant reparation; and thirdly, extra vigilance to ensure that it is not re-victimized, especially at the hands of past perpetrators like Europeans and Arabs.

    All Peoples are owed fairness and sound social science. But, there can be no doubt that from the optic of modern human-rights methodologies, the Jewish People and Israel are positively owed extra vigilance to ensure that they get fairness and sound social science.

    Does Thomas Friedman and the other contributors to the “New York Times” meet this clear standard with respect to the Jewish People and Israel? If not, they are guilty of prejudice and discrimination; and also of grave human-rights violations to the extent that their perverse, wrong-headed views have harmful effects for the more than six million Jews now living in “Eretz Israel.”

  • There is only one explanation for the way the New York Times has turned on Israel and that is that, like the trades unions in the UK and universities in the UK and USA, it has been infiltrated by anti-Israel elements with very deep pockets. Now that subscriptions and sales of newspapers are no longer the main element in their finances, they are open to this kind of abuse.

    • Arthur Spiegel

      Who said “there is nothing new under the sun”? The NYTimes has always been the most anti-Semitic, anti-Jewish publication, with the possible exceptions of Al Jezeera, Mein Kampf and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

      The anti-Jewish history of this fish-wrapper quality publication has worked against the interest of Jews for as long as I can remember and certainly did the Jews no favors during WW2 and the Holocaust.

      I do not expect anything different from this rag, and I would pass along these expectations to any other Jewish person.

  • charles kaplan

    Those who believe that Israel is being dragged through the mud don’t seem to realize that the alternative is to be buried in it.

    • elixelx

      No, no, boyo! the alternative is to beat the living daylights out of idiots like you and the New York Slimes who want to see Israel buried…and never will!
      Choke on your bile, boyo!

      • Hubs

        Well said Elche!!!

  • steven L

    The flagship of USA mass media antisemitism.
    Note the relatively small space given in the Sunday time to the execution-style killing of two police officers!
    The liberals condone and promote violence. Amazingly our Pr. is highly reluctant to us American power against the international evils!

  • judithg

    someone should tell the sulzbergers that regardless of how they feel about being Jews, reality intrudes. they’re Jews if they like it or if they don’t. it’s in the DNA.

  • Martin Bookspan

    Right you are, Eric R. And the second half of that slogan…: “to bad rubbish”…. was never truer.

  • Louis Fried

    Who cares what the three stooges (Friedman, Cohen, Rudoren) say or write. The contents are entirely predictable.

    • Louis Grace

      Hey! Don’t insult the Three Stooges that way!
      🙂

  • nelson marans

    Even during the Holocaust, The New York Times then under Jewish ownership did not report it except for a single time in the back pages. What should we expect from the current publishers, who are no longer Jewish and have intermarried, about favorable reporting on Israel. Not Much.

  • Michael Garfinkel

    Is there a word that adequately describes these people?

    “Contemptible” just seems inadequate.

    • elixelx

      “Liberal” is abuse enough!

      • Ron Blower

        um…’Split the difference’:

        “Contemptible Liberal”??

        • elixelx

          Difference duly split!

  • Reuven

    The NY Times is an anti-Senmitic rag. It’s as simple as that!

  • Shalom-Hillel

    Thanks, Mr. Auerbach. You have the facts and you lay them out. Unfortunately, the NY Times creates the ideological template for viewing events in Israel, which the wider media, here and abroad, borrow and propagate. Their reporters are activists, not journalists.

  • Mickey Oberman

    The Times is the incubator and the feed lot for anti semitic Jews.

  • Ed Fertik

    I’m Jewish and angry at the pathetic excuse for Jews involved in left wing journalism. These are people who help us understand the total lack if political and global understanding that New York Jews have.

  • Emmett

    To the Juden-rat infested NY Times, I wish to you all what you deserve.

  • art frank

    From what I understand the Sulzbergers forgot they were Jewish a long time ago. The anti-Semites, though, continue to rant about the Jewish owned NY Times.

  • Fred

    No more treasonable then those who convert.

  • Leo Toystory

    To paraphrase Max Reger, ‘I’m sitting in the smallest room of my house. A copy of the New York Times is now in front of me – it shall soon be behind me.’

  • Ken Greenberg

    If we are truly to believe that any Palestinian state will include land swaps, then every idiot should know that the settlements – whether they continue to grow or not – will be part of Israel. So why all the noise? People need space to live.

    If the Palestinians truly wanted peace and their own state, they would also build housing for their citizens. Instead they used materials that could have built housing to construct terror tunnels.

    And what of the billions of dollars of aid the Palestinians get from around the world. Where is that money going?

    Does anybody at the Times recall the 2005 evacuation of Israeli settlers from the Gaza strip? They left housing and state of the art greenhouses behind. What did the Palestinians do? They razed the homes and greenhouses, and used the property instead to launch rockets. Real smart.

    This is why Howard Stern long ago labeled the NYT the “New York Nazi Times.” They should try journalism for a change, instead of their twisted narrative that favors terrorists.

  • Eric R.

    The Sulzbergers are no longer Jewish, having become Episcopalian.

    Good riddance.

    • Eve

      You didn’t complete your last sentence.
      Good riddance to bad rubbish.

    • Florence

      Condolences to the Episcopalians.

    • Pinchas Baram

      how about a mass pulsa dinura ceremony cursing Rosenthal, Friedman and Cohen? I’m serious. I’m all for it, so count me in. pbhealer@hotmail.com

    • And the Episcopalians aren’t even real Christians!

    • Hugo

      Yeah it’s difficult to accept criticism especially from people who you think should think like you.

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