The News About Blood Libel (No, Not Sarah Palin, Time Magazine)

When the calendar approaches the Jewish Holiday of Passover there is usually much discussion and unfortunate new examples of the infamous lie against Jews, the blood libel which charges that Jews use the blood of Gentile children to make Matzo (the unleavened bread eaten as part of the holiday’s observance).

Surprisingly this week, smack in the middle of January, months before Passover, the blood libel is back in the news primarily due to the progressive media’s attack on Sarah Palin for using the term in defending herself against false charges that her rhetoric helped to incite the violence in Tucson which included amongst its victims Congresswomen Gabrielle Giffords.



While the media focused on the supposed infraction by Governor Palin, they ignored a more severe infraction by one of their own, Time Magazine. Time’s offense wasn’t about using the term blood libel, or the term for any other uniquely Jewish experience incorrectly. Through the writing of Jerusalem correspondent Karl Vick, Time actually perpetuated the blood libel myth. It wasn’t the usual tale of blood being used for matzo, it was the modern version: because of its wanton desire to steal land from its innocent Arab neighbors, Israel shamelessly spills the blood of the poor peaceful Palestinians.



In this past week’s issue Vick has a piece called Israel's Rightward Lurch Scares Some Conservatives. This work of venom against the Jewish state is laden with lies and half-truths written with Vicks’ usual distain for America’s only reliable ally in the Middle East.

For those who have the privilege of reading the piece on-line, there is the added bonus of Time’s editors getting in on the act, by placing teaser links to stories of alleged Israeli Government mistreatment of foreign children. In bold red letters dividing the copy of Vick’s article are headlines such as “Watch video of Israel preparing to deport children of migrant workers,” and “See photographs of young Palestinians in the age of Israel’s security wall.

In the article Vick claims that a Palestinian woman, Jawaher Abu Rahma, was killed by tear gas set loose by IDF soldiers:
Last week, after a Palestinian woman died after inhaling tear gas fired by Israeli troops, army spokesmen mounted a whisper campaign suggesting she died of natural causes. The unlikely, anonymous explanation was played prominently by Israeli newspapers. Those who said otherwise stood accused of “trying to de-legitimize the Israel Defense Forces.”

An understanding over the death of Bilin protestor Jawaher Abu Rahmah last week is taking shape. Both sides have concluded that Abu Rahmah hadn't died from inhalation of tear gas at the Bilin protest but from the results of the medical care she received along with medical problems she suffered from prior to the demonstration; Judea and Samaria Division Commander Nitzan Alon revealed Friday.

In his account Vick has fallen victim to a mistake made by most Israel correspondents of the mainstream media, he accepted the word of anti-Israel activists verbatim without double checking their facts. If he tried five minutes of investigation the Time writer might have learned that there was a joint investigation between the IDF and the Palestinian Authority which was zeroing in on the treatment Jawaher Abu Rahma received in the hospital. Indeed, at the same time the magazine hit the newsstands the investigation concluded she died of medical malpractice.

Correspondent Vick proceeds to criticize a new law passed by the Knesset by dispensing incorrect information about the execution and intent of the legislation.
“Just last week, the coalition prompted cries of McCarthyism when it moved to crack down on Israeli human rights organizations deemed suspicious by a government that increasingly equates dissent with disloyalty. Taking a page from neighboring authoritarian states, Netanyahu encouraged support for the law, appointing a panel to investigate independent organizations that are critical of government actions.”

Wow, Israel sounds like quite the police state. But of course, Karl Vick is not telling the truth. He says the law was created to investigate any group that is critical of the Israeli Government. If that was the case there wouldn’t be enough people in the world to run such an investigation. In Israel being critical of the government is a national sport no matter what party is running the government or which policies are they executing.

On Friday Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon wrote on his blog:
The Knesset panel of inquiry [formed by the law] is simply about transparency. If there are groups who receive funds from foreign nations then the Israeli public deserves the right to know. Some voices have mistakenly declared that this type of inquiry is reminiscent of undemocratic regimes. Perhaps they should take a look at America’s Foreign Agents Registration Act which is, according to the U.S. Department of Justice website, a “disclosure statute that requires persons acting as agents of foreign principals in a political or quasi-political capacity to make periodic public disclosure of their relationship with the foreign principal, as well as activities, receipts and disbursements in support of those activities.”

It is understandable to want to identify those citizens or organizations that are being paid to act at the behest of a foreign government or organization.

Actually Ayalon’s argument sounds much like that of President Obama when he was complaining about the “foreign money” flowing into the Chamber of Commerce for campaign advertising. I searched the Time archives; I couldn’t find any criticism of the President’s complaints.



As if the other lies the Time writer made weren’t enough Vick also added quotations by a “leftist” historian who implied that Israel is becoming like Nazi Germany:

Ron Pundak, a historian who runs the Peres Center for Peace, sees the current atmosphere of Israeli politics as the ugliest in the nation's history. "It's totally abnormal," he says. "From my point of view, this is reminiscent of the dark ages of different places in the world in the 1930s. Maybe not Germany, but Italy, maybe Argentina later. I fear we are reaching a slippery slope, if we are not already there."

And people were upset about Palin using “blood libel?” Israel, populated by Jews reaching a slippery slope of the 1930’s? Where are the people being shoved into cattle cars? The Showers? Ovens? This kind of language in Vick’s article is not only another attempt to demonize the Jewish State, but even worse to delegitimize the Holocaust. If Israel can be compared to Nazi Germany, well, how bad could the Holocaust have been?

This has been a week containing rare winter examinations of the historic Anti-Semitic blood libel. When it comes to Governor Palin’s use of the term blood libel, it was totally justified. The progressive media created a lie about Palin causing the death of a child, Christina Taylor Greene. Their charge was an example of a blood libel; the very same way Karl Vick’s article in Time Magazine was a modern re-telling of the blood-libel myth with charges of Israel recklessly murdering a Palestinian woman, acting like Nazis with a little dose of Stalin-like legislation to de-legitimize the Jewish State a bit more.

Allow me to suggest that rather than chase around the former Governor of Alaska monitoring her semantic prowess, the mainstream media should examine their own house, monitoring the hate speech of its own, in this case Time Magazine. While Vick’s article did not use the normal anti-Jewish expletives, by using lies to retell the blood libel myths against the national homeland of the Jewish people, his words were just as hateful

Cross posted with NewsRealBlog

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