Dershowitz Warns Clintons: Blumenthal's a Problem for 2016
Noted defense lawyer, scholar, and pro-Israel advocate Alan Dershowitz has warned the Clintons that they will need to distance themselves from Sid Blumenthal unless he stops defending his son Max's anti-Israel book. The book, Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel, compares Israel to Nazi Germany. In recent years, Max Blumenthal has made a career of criticizing Israel and attacking its American Jewish supporters.
The elder Blumenthal reacted harshly to a negative review of his son's book by Eric Alterman of Media Matters for America, writing at the Nation, an institution of the American left. According to Alana Goodman of the Washington Free Beacon, Sid Blumenthal is waging an email campaign to fight criticism of Goliath. Buzzfeed's Rosie Gray covered the story Thursday, calling it Sid Blumenthal's new "cause."
Blumenthal is best known for defending President Bill Clinton during the impeachment scandal, and for his frequent attacks on critical journalists. He sued Matt Drudge for defamation, a case Blumenthal later settled. Blumenthal also advised Hillary Clinton during her 2008 campaign. Afterwards, President Barack Obama's first White House Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, reportedly barred Blumenthal from a job in the State Department.
Prof. Dershowitz has long been a friend and supporter of the Clintons, and backed Hillary Clinton in the 2008 primary before Obama became the party's nominee, whereupon he gave his support to Obama. On Friday, Dershowitz told Breitbart News that Sid Blumenthal's vociferous advocacy for his son's book could damage Hillary Clinton's widely anticipated run for her party's nomination for president in 2016:
Max Blumenthal is well outside the acceptable range of rhetoric about Israel. His constant comparisons between Nazi Germany and the Jewish state establish him as an extremist bigot whose greatest appeal is to antisemites and others who apply a double standard to the Jewish state. Any political candidate who would associate himself or herself with such views would be unacceptable to Americans. In addition to being extremist in his anti-Israel views, Blumenthal is also vehemently anti-American. I have long known his father and have worked with him. But even understanding how a father would want to identify with a son, no decent person should ever support the views expressed by Max Blumenthal. I would sincerely hope that Sid, while continuing to love his son, would completely dissociate himself from his son's bigotry. And I ask decent people to ask themselves what they would do if they had a son who espoused views akin to those expressed by the KKK, Hamas and other antisemites. I would hope they would do the right thing and dissociate themselves from such views.
In light of the long association between the Clintons and Sid Blumenthal, I hope that the Clintons ask Sid to expressly disasscoate himself from his son's views--and if he refuses to, that they no longer work with him on any matters.