The end of June 2022 encapsulated the far-left and anti-Israel sentiments of J Street. While it is not news that the group is slightly more centrist than anti-Israel groups like Jewish Voice for Peace and IfNotNow, it is interesting to see how the group is relishing defeating moderate Democrats, much like the left-wing anti-Zionist extremists from the Democratic Socialists of America.
On June 29, J Street posted about its elation that its alt-left candidate for Congress in Illinois defeated the primary challenger favored by the centrist group Democratic Majority for Israel (DMFI). J Street led its press release with “Following principled progressive Delia Ramirez’s landslide victory over DMFI-endorsed Gilbert Villegas in the Democratic primary for Illinois’ 3rd congressional district,…” The group just could have led that it’s happy its preferred candidate won, but it opted to focus on the defeat of DMFI’s preferred candidate.
J Street said that its PAC spent $140,000 on supporting the Working Families’ Party candidate, to combat funds from “the AIPAC-aligned Democratic Majority For Israel (DMFI) and other right-leaning groups.” Note that AIPAC and DMFI are not “right-leaning groups” but centrist; it’s J Street that’s far-left, making those groups appear right-leaning from their perspective.
J Street then doubled down on mischaracterizing the centrist pro-Israel groups stating “In an election cycle that has seen the ultra-hawkish right-wing group AIPAC and its allies like DMFI… (emphasis is J Street’s)” These are inflammatory and blatantly untrue statements that DMFI – a purely Democratic group! – is “ultra-hawkish” and “right-wing.”
J Street is completely untethered from reality.
J Street is continuing on its far-left, Arab-centered mission on June 30th.
Jeremy Ben Ami, the president of J Street, is going to speak with Jim Zogby of the Arab American Institute. Their topic is rebuking the United States for the alleged crimes of the Jewish State. It will continue Zogby’s assertion that “Sanctions [against Israel] and accountability become absolutely essential to this discussion. We’re beyond dialogue, we’ve been beyond dialogue for decades now. We are now at the point where there must be a price paid.“
Ben-Ami is featured with Zogby, who came after the Anti-Defamation League in May 2022, because it correctly pointed out the anti-Semitic comments from the head of CAIR in San Francisco who said that Zionist synagogues are enemies. Zogby added that Israel has “brutal and aggressive hardline apartheid policies” and decries “settler colonialism.“
Sounds like the right company for J Street’s president.
J Street is the home for left-wing pro-Palestinians who seek to market themselves as pro-Israel centrists to mislead the public that their extremist views are in line with the government of Israel and Zionists around the world. The group is slowly revealing its true alt-left bent, stating that its opponents are not limited to the Republican Jewish Coalition, but centrist Democrats like DMFI which it falsely labels as “ultra-hawkish” and “right-wing,” as it simultaneously joins forces with leading Arab critics of Israel.
In back-to-back days, The New York Times again proved it knows nothing about Israel.
On September 24, the paper wrote that “progressives” were against Israel repeatedly as it described nine members of Congress who voted against funding Israel’s missile defensive system:
“The episode captured the bitter divide among Democrats over Israel, which has pit a small but vocal group of progressives who have called for an end to conditions-free aid to the country against the vast majority of the party, which maintains that the United States must not waver in its backing for Israel’s right to defend itself.”
“After the vote, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez drew condemnations on social media both from supporters of Israel, who savaged her for failing to support the funding, and from progressives and pro-Palestinian activists, who expressed outrage that she ultimately did not register her opposition to it.”
“The debate on the House floor grew bitter Thursday as some progressive Democrats who were opposed called Israel an “apartheid state,” an accusation that at least one proponent of the bill called antisemitic.”
“The dispute began this week, after progressives revolted at the inclusion of the Iron Dome funding in an emergency spending bill, effectively threatening to shut down the government rather than support the money.”
“Some progressive lawmakers grew furious with Representative Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland, the No. 2 Democrat, who pushed for the swift vote on Iron Dome funding. “
Ocasio-Cortez and many of the other people who are against Israel maintaining a defense program against the thousands of missiles launched by HAMAS, the US-designated terrorist group, are anti-Israel Socialist extremists. Most are members of the Democratic Socialists of America, a group of extremists peddling in anti-Semitic tropes.
True liberal-progressives, like Rep. Ritchie Torres who proudly supports Israel, understand that Israel is a beacon of liberal values in a radical, authoritarian, Muslim Middle East. Whether regarding women’s rights, gay rights, animal rights, climate change, recycling, freedoms of press, religion, assembly or any of a variety of issues, Israel is by far the most democratic and liberal country for a thousand miles in any direction. No liberal-progressive would ever side with the Palestinian political-terrorist group Hamas over Israel.
The New York Times peddled much of its typical inanity on September 23rd but added its own anti-Semitism to the article. It said that Ocasio-Cortez wanted to vote against the Iron Dome funding but the “powerful” Israel lobby made her simply vote “present.”
This charge is a classic anti-Semitic smear, and echoes anti-Semites like Henry Ford and Adolf Hitler who claimed that powerful Jews run the press, politicians, the banks and all of society. It is a line that the former liberal-progressive and now anti-Semitic Socialist extremist newspaper repeats frequently.
True liberal-progressives proudly stand with Jews and Israel both because of their commitment to human rights and that they are the most persecuted minority in the world. It is the anti-Semitic and anti-Israel Socialist extremists that are vilifying Jews and the Jewish State, and they must be repudiated completely.
Successful race baiters become famous and powerful. They first attract attention which brings in followers, and then money and ultimately true power.
Adolf Hitler produced his manifesto called ‘Mein Kampf” meaning ‘My Struggle” which sought to air his grievances about the state of German society and the struggles of the common man. He used the Jew as his scapegoat, at times attacking the Hebrew Pinata for being poor, dirty and smelly, and at other times for being a rich banker who profited off the work of others. He portrayed the Jews as leeches which sucked the blood and labor of poor workers and profited in a sneaky plan for world domination.
Some selections on his second “powerful parasite theme”:
Jewish parasites: “In the business world things were even worse. Here the Jewish people had really become ‘indispensable.’ The spider began slowly to suck the people’s blood out of its pores. By way of the war societies one had found the instrument with which to put an end, bit by bit, to a national and free economy.“
Jews stealing in secret: “they try to cheat the whole world with their tricks; they are lazy, but with their pretended ‘silent’ work they create the appearance of an enormous and equally laborious activity; in short, they are cheats, characters of political profiteering, who hate the honest work of others. Just as such a folkish moth always appeals to the darkness of the silence, one can bet a thousand to one that under its cover he does not produce, but only steals from the fruits of the labor of others.“
Jewish profiteers and desire for world domination: “Jews are the regents of the stock exchange power of the American Union. Every year they manage to become increasingly the controlling masters of the labor power of a people of 120,000,000 souls; one great man, Ford, to their exasperation still holds out independently there even now. With rapacious cleverness they knead public opinion and form from it the instrument of a struggle for their own future. Already the greatest heads of Jewry envisage the approach of the fulfillment of the hereditary slogan of the great devouring of the nations.“
Hitler was appalled that people would come to the defense of the Jews, knowing that they profit off of the toil and suffering of others:
Don’t defend Jews who profit off your misery:“If the Hungarian government hangs ten Jewish stock exchange profiteers, whose money is sticky with the blood and the sweat of hundreds of thousands of honest people, we protest, we cry about pogroms and we demand the boycott of an entire State.”
Hitler wrote Mein Kampf in July 1925 as a poor man in prison. Within eight years he was the chancellor of Germany.
The Alt-Left’s Modern ‘Mein Kampf’
The National Socialist German Worker’s Party of the 1930’s and 1940’s was commonly called the Nazi Party. It is associated with the far right’s desire for racial purity, demonization of inferior races and elevation of proper Aryan Germans. It drew its inspiration from Hitler’s manifesto.
Today’s Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) is a far-left group which shuns much of the ideology of the Nazi Party while embracing other key tenets.
It does not follow Hitler’s screed against the dirty, smelly Jew or other poor people as the party argues that it is fighting for the poor working class. Instead the alt-left goes all-in against the rich “ownership class” which robs from poor people of their work and dignity. Jews just happen to be the mascot of the evil profiteers, whether in Gaza or Detroit.
Randi Weingarten, longtime president of the American Federation of Teachers, a lobbying group with 1.7 million members which pumps millions of dollars into Democratic politicians’ pockets, declared that American Jews are “part of the ownership class…. now want to take that ladder of opportunity [education] away from those who do not have it.” (Weingarten is married to Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum, who sits on the Rabbinical Committee of the left-wing group J Street, and was just appointed by President Biden to join the US religious freedom commission. An interesting spectacle of Jews eating their own).
Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), a proud member of the DSA made her own declaration about Jews:
“As I think about my family in Palestine, that continue to live under military occupation and how that really interacts with this beautiful Black city I grew up in … you know I always tell people that cutting people off from water is violence, and they do it from Gaza to Detroit, and it’s a way to control people, to oppress people. And it’s those structures that we continue to fight against. I know you all understand the structure we’ve been living under right now is designed by those who exploit the rest of us, for their own profit. I always say to people ‘I don’t care if it’s around the issue of global human rights, and our fight to free Palestine, or to pushing back against those who don’t believe in a minimum wage or those who believe we don’t have a right to healthcare and so much more.’ And I tell those same people, that if you open the curtain andlook behind the curtain, it’s the same people who make money and—yes they do—off of racism, off of these broken policies. There is someone there making money and you saw it, it was so exposed during the pandemic…. They made record profit.”
It’s a wonderful summation of Hitler’s thesis, that Jews operate in the shadows to profit off the suffering of others.
The DSA is remarketing key talking points of the Nazi Party under the banner “From the ashes of the old: socialism for a new tomorrow.” Who would imagine that the heirs to Hitler’s ideology that Jews are puppet masters exploiting the labor and suffering of the masses, would be Jewish and Muslim women?
Progressive and conservative people around the world have different interpretations of justice.
For progressives, justice is achieved by enabling people who have been marginalized to succeed. It seeks to even the playing field by affording those at the edges some advantages to address systemic roadblocks which kept them down for so long. Justice demands reform in various areas beyond economy and law, to include healthcare and the environment.
Conservatives view justice through a narrower lens of tradition and law. They appreciate order and security, and upholding historic truths. Justice demands a system which rewards or punishes risk and investment. It requires uneven outcomes in order to spur overall growth.
Zionism speaks justice to both.
Liberals rallied to Zionism after the Holocaust of the Jews in Europe. They saw systemic anti-Semitism commit a genocide of millions of European Jews in the 1940’s and then watched the Muslim world expunge its Jewry from 1948 through the 1970’s. A home where Jews could be safe and self-governing was clearly needed in the creation and building up of the Jewish State.
Conservatives were some of the earliest Zionists – even pre-dating the first Zionist Congress in 1897 – and continue to be strong supporters. They appreciate Jews’ 3,300 year-history in the land of Israel, and understand that “the promised land” is a religious term uniquely meant for Jews about that Jewish holy land.
Progressives are amazed that a small new country was able to absorb immigrants fleeing persecution from dozens of diverse countries including: Morocco, Russia, Argentina, Uruguay, France, Tunisia, Egypt, Iraq, Syria, Ethiopia, Ukraine and Yemen. There is no country in the world that has such a high percentage of immigrants coming into the country – virtually penniless – from so many lands. None.
Conservatives are amazed at the stability and application of the law in Israel. While other countries in the region have killed hundreds of thousands in wars, the strong Israeli army has kept its wars very short, minimizing death tolls. While the authoritarian leaders of neighboring countries stay in power for decades, Israel holds genuine elections and prosecutes its leaders, sometimes sending former prime ministers to prison.
People from across the political spectrum may not know some statistics about Israel but aren’t surprised to hear them. For example, Israel is the only religious country which has more tourists each year from a different religion (the Jewish State has more Christian tourists than any other religious group; other religious countries like Denmark have mostly Christian visitors; Iran, mostly Muslim visitors). Some facts may surprise them, such as the fact that the Arab population in Jerusalem has gone up by 3.4 times since 1980 when Israel declared the city as its eternal capital, compared to a rise of only 1.9 times for the Jewish population.
Both progressives and conservatives marvel at the religious freedoms in the only Jewish State. Muslims may wear hijabs (banned in France), build minarets near mosques (banned in Switzerland) and have halal meat (banned in the Scandinavian countries). Anyone of any faith can become prime minister in Israel (only Christians can lead Greece, only Muslims in Syria). Israel even helped the Mormons build a church in Jerusalem! and the Baha’i have a major temple in Haifa (the faith is banned in Qatar).
Liberals love that Israel is a green country, leading the world in recycling plastic. It was the first country in the Middle East to have wind farms and a bike sharing program. It also has a universal healthcare system for every citizen and permanent resident. Meanwhile, conservatives love that the Jewish State has a thriving free market built on capitalism. It has more companies listed on Nasdaq than any other country except for China (a country with a population 155 times as large).
Israel has strived to build a country that incorporates freedom, justice and fairness in an open, secure and vibrant multi-cultural society, in the heart of a turbulent and extremist neighborhood.
When Israel declared itself an independent state in 1948, it called for justice instinctively understood by both progressives and conservatives:
“THE STATE OF ISRAEL will be open for Jewish immigration and for the Ingathering of the Exiles; it will foster the development of the country for the benefit of all its inhabitants; it will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel; it will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture; it will safeguard the Holy Places of all religions; and it will be faithful to the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.”
Israel was designed as a particular Jewish State, focused on Jewish immigration and a vision of peace based on the Jewish bible, but also with “complete equality of social and political rights to all inhabitants irrespective of religion.” The country’s foundational principles stressed both the particular and universal in a unique and bold ambition for justice for all: a space for the most persecuted minority in the world, and a philosophy of justice based on history, tradition, truth and fairness.
Progressive and conservative people around the world have different interpretations of justice, yet both see their visions realized in Israel.
Freshman Congressman Ritchie Torres (D-NY) whose South Bronx district is the poorest in the nation, came up to Westchester shortly after a mini-war between Gaza and Israel and a spike in anti-Semitism in June 2021. He spoke passionately to the crowd of 100 about both topics.
The Afro-Latino gay congressman made clear that he strongly objected to the direction of many progressive politicians in actively defaming Israel, in what he called the terrible “Corbynization of progressive politics,” after the British Labour Party leader who frequently attacked the Jewish State and was often accused of anti-Semitism.
Torres noted that the various smears against Israel are patently untrue. He railed against the charge that Israel is “an apartheid state” where Arabs have more rights than in many neighboring Arab countries. He said the claim that Israel is committing a “genocide” against Arabs is absurd when the Arab population in Israel has skyrocketed. To label Israel with such charges is either a boldface lie or demands new definitions of apartheid and genocide.
He added that the number of United Nations resolutions against Israel “boggles the imagination.” He questioned why there was no B.D.S. (boycott, divestment and sanctions) movement against China, Myanmar, Turkey or Iran for their actual human rights abuses and attacks against minority populations.
Torres said his only conclusion for the double standards and demonization of Israel is gross anti-Semitism. He thought it was horrible and wanted to have absolutely nothing to do with such sentiments. He declared that it was appropriate to claim support of Israel as a liberal priority and wanted to become the “poster child for progressives for Israel.” It was time for “visibly pro-Israel voices to be heard in the public square.”
He then paused for questions from the enthusiastic Orthodox Jewish audience.
When asked about the rise of the anti-Israel voices, Torres discussed two principle sources: education and social media.
Torres pointed out that many schools have been indoctrinating students with anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism. Most people in the United States don’t know about the actual rights of Arabs in Israel, the cleansing of Jews from Arab lands or even much about the Holocaust in Europe.
He called Twitter the “new guillotine.” He claimed that social media poisons the narrative as people with certain agendas feed fanaticism to millions of followers. Torres thought it was hard for the “center” to have a voice in social media as the entire business model rewarded extreme sentiments. He wants to hold those tech-media companies accountable for their spread of hate.
In searching for a new direction, Torres said it was time for progressives to “expand the scope of intersectionality to include Jews.” An average Jew suffers the greatest number of hate crimes in the United States and it was time to include the Jewish community in reciprocal allyship.
Torres recounted how the New York City chapter of the Democratic Socialists for America questionnaire asked that its candidates not visit Israel and to support the B.D.S. movement. He pondered whether some progressives had somehow turned on the Jewish State for having the chutzpah to progress from being victims to being empowered. “Isn’t that our goal?” he asked aloud rhetorically.
The pro-Israel crowd wanted to better understand how this young politician became a self-described “unicorn” as staunchly pro-Israel in an increasingly hostile anti-Israel progressive world. He pointed to his trip to the Jewish State.
He emotionally recalled his trip to both Masada and Yad Vashem, the Holocaust museum. In those two stops he understood both the long history of Jews in the land of Israel and the painful destruction of Jewish communities in Israel and around the world. He connected how people in his district fear gunfire while Israelis fear rocket fire. He internalized how the United States has only two neighbors with which it coexists peacefully, while small Israel has multiple the number of neighbors which are hostile to the country’s basic existence.
Torres concluded that it is important for people to mobilize: to push for changes in education and social media; to build an infrastructure to help get pragmatic pro-Israel politicians elected; and to make sure to vote and get the constructive voices for peace elected.
The attendees were thrilled to take pictures with this “unicorn,” while simultaneously bemoaning that indeed he is unfortunately one-of-a-kind. At least, for the moment.
The State of New York will lose one congressional seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, due to coming up 89 persons shy of Minnesota, which will take the lost seat. Some people have blamed the result on an undercount of actual New Yorkers due to the animus between New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio for not prioritizing the census.
They should consider another reason: New Yorkers who have felt increasingly marginalized by the strong leftward lurch of the Empire State.
Politics: Alt-Left in Congress and New York State Assembly
The 2018 elections saw the rise of “the squad” in Congress, including Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in New York City. Their success, and that of Democratic Socialists like Senator Bernie Sanders, have moved fringe ideas into the mainstream and is appalling to many. Thousands of lifetime Democrats left the Democratic Party as a result, especially after the head of the Democratic National Committee said that the far-left was “the future of our party.“
Similarly, over the past two election cycles, the New York State assembly moved from tackling issues in a bi-partisan manner to one which has a veto-proof super-majority of Democrats who intend on pushing a far-left agenda.
Why register for the census if it just pushes a thumb down on a scale for a political regime which does not represent your political views?
The New York Times echoes the voices of the far-left and encourages them with highly biased and false narratives.
The media is pushing stories that White people are inherently racist and men have caused all of the problems in the world. Bankers are crooks who steal money and opportunity from the poor, and Zionists are thieves who steal land from Arabs. If only women were in power, there would be no coronavirus and peace in the world…
The mainstream media is attempting to brainwash society with their new “truths” of secular wokeness, that people are good and bad based on inherent characteristics, not by actions.
Why follow the media calls to register for the census to aggravate the lies?
I am sure that the census did not properly count all New Yorkers. As many of us watched politicians and census takers aggressively search for non-citizens to increase the power of the left, we framed our census forms and mounted them on the wall as mementoes of when we felt we counted.
When Israel declared its new state on May 14, 1948, U.S. Senator Arthur Vandenberg (R-MI) supported Democratic President Truman’s quick recognition of the Jewish State. In his capacity as the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he said:
“The prompt recognition of the provisional government as the de facto authority in the new State of Israel is the logical and proper step following the termination of the British mandate…. It responds to a basic decision taken at the United Nations at our instance. It is a positive actions after many months of critical and unhappy indecision.“
The State of Michigan has changed a lot in its attitudes towards Israel since 1948.
In 2019, the state had the second highest total Arab population, just behind California, counting 221,631 persons, or about 2.2% of the state which perhaps changed the tone regarding policies towards Israel. In November 2018, the state elected Rashida Tlaib to Congress and re-elected her two years later. Born in Detroit, MI, she is the descendant of Palestinian Arabs and the most anti-Israel voice in Congress today. In January 2021 she said:
“I think it’s important to understand that Israel is a racist state… they don’t believe that [Palestinian Arabs] are equal human beings that deserve to live.“
On March 12, 2021, Tlaib penned a letter to U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken that incorrectly called “Palestine” an actual entity and falsely claimed that Israel had an obligation to provide COVID-19 vaccines to people in Gaza, the neighboring strip administered by a U.S.-designated terrorist group committed to Israel’s destruction.
The letter continued with lies denouncing “Israel’s ongoing colonization of the Palestinian West Bank, including East Jerusalem,” as if East Jerusalem was an actual place rather than a footnote related to a city once divided by war for the years 1949-1967. Further, the “Palestinian West Bank” is Area A which Israel handed to the Palestinian Authority in the Oslo Accords. There was never a “Palestinian West Bank” before then, and it is not “colonized” by Israel.
Tlaid wrote the letter with Mark Pocan (D-WI) and secured signatures from Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Betty McCollum (D-MN), Marie Newman (D-IL), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Jim McGovern (D-MA), Andre Carson (D-IN), Chellie Pingree (D-ME) and Hank Johnson (D-GA). All Democrats.
At the time of Israel’s founding, a leading Republican senator from the state of Michigan worked with a Democratic administration to support the Jewish State. Unfortunately, 73 years later, we see far-left Democrats following a shrill Congresswoman from Michigan in aggressively trying to pull this Democratic administration from supporting Israel. As it relates to Israel, mainstream Republicans and Democrats have more in common than either party has with the Socialist fringe inside the Democratic party.
The San Francisco School Board met on May 22, 2018 with a goal of ridding the school system of any signs of racism. It took two actions which showcase how liberals view Zionism as a racist endeavor.
The board decided to establish a panel to rename schools in the district which are “named for historical figures who engaged in the subjugation and enslavement of human beings; or who oppressed women, inhibiting societal progress; or whose actions led to genocide; or who otherwise significantly diminished the opportunities of those amongst us to the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” In January 2021 the panel put forward its recommendation to rename 44 schools, including those named after George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and Abraham Lincoln, among others.
Upon announcing the selection of the schools to be renamed, School Board President Gabriela López said “we are working alongside the rest of the country to dismantle symbols of racism and white supremacy culture.” The fact that she endorsed renaming schools named after Lincoln who led the United States in a bitter civil war to end slavery did not seem to make her consider her actions or comment. Lopez added in an interview that “the criteria was created to show if there were ties to these specific themes, right? White supremacy, racism, colonization, ties to slavery, the killing of indigenous people, or any symbols that embodied that. And the committee shared that these are the names that have these ties.“
It is therefore curious – or telling – that at the same May 22 school board meeting, the school board voted to permit the actively anti-Zionist Arab Resource and Organizing Committee (AROC) to begin teaching Arabic and “cultural empowerment” to students in the schools. AROC’s anti-Zionist activities included blocking Israeli boats from docking and calls to destroy Israel with chants “from the river to the sea.” The group calls Israel an “apartheid” state that engages in “colonialism,” outright lies and smears which dovetail perfectly with the woke San Francisco School Board. These are the messages that San Francisco wants taught to its schoolchildren.
The reality is that schools in Gaza and the West Bank – seemingly strongly supported by AROC – promote its own form of “cultural empowerment” and are named after terrorists like Dalal Mughrabi, who led the murder of 37 civilians, including 12 children, in a bus hijacking. The murder of those civilians and young children are seemingly viewed as “anti-colonialism” “resistance” for the woke of San Francisco.
When Belgium learned of its donor dollars going to fund Palestinian Arab schools after murderers, it froze funding which made the Palestinian Authority change the name. Alas, it took less than a month for the PA to then name two schools after the same terrorist.
San Francisco is stripping its schools of the names of American presidents who were instrumental in bringing democracy to America and the world, while simultaneously tacitly approving the naming of schools after the murderers of Jewish children, in hiring AROC to promote a twisted version of Arab “cultural empowerment.” Even the anti-Semites in Belgium do not stoop so low.
San Francisco is not only canceling America’s founding fathers but is simultaneously endorsing terrorism against America’s principal ally in the Middle East, the only Jewish State. It does this with the misguided woke self-righteousness of believing Israel shares the same “imperialist” and “racist” attitudes as the Unites States of America.
The generals of the Intersectional Army have begun a carpet gaslighting campaign and it is incumbent on all decent people to “rage, rage against the dying of the light.”
Palestinians polled themselves in December 2020, as they do every quarter. The differences between the West Bank and Gaza continued to be consistent in several areas such as Gazans favoring Hamas much more than West Bank Arabs.
The poll noted that more Gazans think that Hamas is not corrupt (45.3%) versus 8.3% of Arabs in the West Bank; Gazans back Hamas for president (64.4%) versus only 37.9% of West Bank Arabs; and 53.9% of Gazans believing fair elections can be held while 58.2% of West Bank Arabs think otherwise. When it comes to the Palestinian Authority (PA), almost everyone agrees that it is hopelessly corrupt (88.9% and 84.5% for Gaza and West Bank Arabs, respectively).
The latest poll also asked if people wanted to get the coronavirus vaccine. In Gaza, 50.5% and 31.6% stated they certainly did and thought they wanted to be vaccinated, respectively (82.1% in favor of vaccination), while 49.8% and 19.4% of West Bank Arabs said they certainly and probably DID NOT want to be vaccinated, respectively (69.2% against vaccination).
That is a remarkable difference in attitudes towards vaccination between the two regions which begs the question as to why Gazans want the vaccine while West Bank Arabs do not.
Two possible reasons: population density and trust in institutions.
Gaza is an extremely compact area with over 13,000 people per square mile. That compares to 759 people per square mile in the West Bank (17 times less). As the coronavirus spreads from person-to-person, it stands to reason that Gazans are more nervous about the virus rapidly spreading.
As relevant, is the fact that Gazans trust the Hamas authorities to look out for them. Both the Arabs in the West Bank and Gaza do not trust the PA in any matter. With Hamas ruling Gaza and in charge of coordinating a vaccination program with the United Nations, Gazans are much more comfortable getting the vaccine than West Bank Arabs led by the PA with zero credibility.
Meanwhile in the United States, several far-left members of Congress including Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY), Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX), Rep. Marie Newman (D-IL), Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) criticized Israel for not vaccinating Arabs in Gaza and the West Bank, even though the PA took on the responsibility for healthcare in the Oslo Accords and does so together with the United Nations. To suggest that Israel should re-enter Gaza, which it left in 2005, to vaccinate people who have gone to war with Israel three times since 2008 is both illogical and dangerous. To push Israel to vaccinate West Bank Arabs who don’t want the vaccine would be an assault. If West Bankers do not trust the Palestinian Authority, why would anyone think they would trust Israel?
The PA stated publicly that it was not asking Israel to secure vaccinations for them and are coordinating efforts with the World Health Organization. Members of the PA Health Ministry were insulted by the suggestion that they work with Israel adding “We are not a department in the Israeli Defense Ministry. We have our own government and Ministry of Health, and they are making huge efforts to get the vaccine.“
The concern of the American “progressives” uniquely for Palestinians is puzzling as they are faring better than most. According to the current information from Worldometers:
Cases per 1M
Deaths per 1M
countries with roughly 31,000 cases per 1M population
The Arabs in Gaza and the West Bank rank 62nd globally in frequency of cases and have far fewer deaths than other countries with a similar positive infection rate. Yet there has been no outcry from those same Democrats about the situation in Bulgaria or Belize who are dying at rates multiples higher than Arabs. It seems to suggest that the left-wing Americans are using the coronavirus dynamic merely as a cudgel against Israel.
There is a significant gap in the attitude of Gazans and West Bank Arabs regarding the coronavirus vaccine as well as among far-left politicians regarding their concern for Palestinian Arabs and Albanians who are fairing much worse in the pandemic. The gap is one of trust, with Palestinians trusting Hamas but not the PA, and “Progressives” singularly not trusting Israel among all the nations.
January 6, 2021 was a spectacle in Washington, D.C. when protesters stormed the U.S. Capital building which was convening to certify the results of the presidential elections. The overrun of the capital came just as Democrats won two Senate run-off seats in Georgia giving the party full control of Congress. One person was shot and killed and members of Congress needed to be escorted to secure rooms as the building was put in lock down. A curfew was imposed on the city.
People bemoan that the United States has become a Banana Republic which cannot peacefully hold elections or have a transition of power. They wonder how a powerful and wealthy country could descend into such chaos. Quickly pointing to President Donald Trump as the instigator for the event is a missed opportunity to expose the root causes of the mayhem. The danger of not exploring it is the casual dismissal of needed changes to society that go beyond January 20th when Trump leaves office and when the world moves passed the pandemic, hopefully in the coming months.
The instigating reasons include the notion that there is theft, the normalization of violent protest and the breakdown of trust and respect. All of this in the backdrop of a broader move to extremist views by many Americans and the relatively newer belief that government actually matters.
People become enraged when they feel deeply wronged, especially when it comes to something being stolen. If rights, liberties, lands or votes are viewed as being stripped away, then people will actively resist such wrongs.
President Donald Trump actively fed the narrative that peoples’ votes were being stolen which was the reason he lost the election, with “Stop the Steal” exclamations. He told his supporters to not even bother voting in the Georgia Senate run-off, as the system wouldn’t let their voices be heard.
This is not new, as Democrats often make claims of “voter suppression.” A conspiracy theory came out of Hillary Clinton’s mouth four years ago when she said as she lost “they were never going to let me be president.” Her backers believed her and held “Not My President” rallies during Trump’s early months in office.
The United Nations also promotes the notion of theft when it comes to Israel. It uses racist language that Israelis are “stealing Arab land” as if dirt can be inherently “Arab” (imagine someone saying that Alabama is inherently “white”). It established a special agency, UNRWA, which promises to enable millions of Arabs to “return” to Israel, actively fueling anger at the Jewish State.
Normalizing Violent “Protests”
The world actively promotes Palestinian “resistance” and normalizes terrorism. The 2% War which began in September 2000 killed and maimed thousands of Israeli civilians is commonly called the “Second Intifada” meaning “uprising,” softening the crimes of the murderers. Left-wing media states that Palestinians are only “resorting to violence” even when all their foundational charters and glorification of terrorists are plain to see.
In the United states, when the Black Lives Matter protests burned cities to the ground the media said that the protesters were “mostly peaceful” despite the videos of massive looting and scenes of charred buildings. The public seemingly gave a pass to the anarchy. When anarchists seized downtown Seattle and declared their alt-left caliphate with a concocted flag, the police were ordered to not engage.
Normalization by definition creates a new normal.
The Loss of Trust and Respect
There has been a continued erosion in the trust of institutions in the United States over several years. Blacks and liberals have distrusted the police for a long time but the nature of distrust has broadened and deepened.
The Internet is a great tool in allowing people to connect and find areas of interest but its use has had broad ramifications for businesses and society.
The personalization capabilities of search engines has allowed people to narrowly focus on topics and points of view that interest them. Such model and migration of eyeballs has shifted advertising dollars from television and newspapers to online giants like Google and Facebook. It forced the legacy media to pivot their businesses from neutral providers of information to highly-biased disseminators of propaganda. The media’s business model became #AlternativeFacts. When the Internet giants then followed suit during this election and shut down opinions which it found offensive, there became a deep resentment to all of the media.
Amid this backdrop, liberal society endorsed the idea that people’s perceptions of race and gender trumped science, undermining the foundation of truth. Even language became “weaponized” as people received daily addenda to the dictionary.
As the foundations of language and science were being shaken, woke society came after America’s founding fathers and institutions.
Kneeling for the national anthem, and the blitzkrieg of tearing down statues of Jefferson and Washington and renaming buildings and institutions were taken by many Americans as not protests but a profound disrespecting of America. The nation’s capital building became a symbol to either defend or mock.
A Move to Polar Extremes and Suddenly Government Matters
Moderate politicians have been forced out of both the Democratic and Republican parties for the past twenty years. The primary system has favored those who can activate a loud loyalist base and targets politicians who have preferred bipartisanship. The test of party purity advanced more extreme right-wing and left-wing politicians, who resemble the talking points of narrow slices of extremist ideology fed on social media and the Internet.
As bipartisan politicians leave Congress and state houses, extremist opinions and laws get enacted. This leaves a bitter taste in the mouths of the minority as the majority advances its agenda without fear of being voted out of office. When a blue state sees a red state dramatically limiting abortion access, it passes laws allowing for legal abortion up until birth, essentially blessing infanticide.
Extremism doesn’t exist in a vacuum; each side feeds the other. Both sides see that government matters as they adopt extremist laws so it drives people to the polls, with the 2020 presidential election having the biggest turnout in 120 years.
There is not one single thing that needs to be done to become a more perfect union and a more perfect planet. The change of administration and broad vaccinations that are underway will certainly help, but much more needs to be done, as the storming of the U.S. Capital building has been years in the making.
Leaders must stop promoting false narratives of “theft.” While there was certainly a media frenzy against Trump (as there was in 2016), there is no proof of massive voter fraud. Republicans must loudly denounce Trump’s comments, not just Democrats. In other parts of the world, we similarly need to stop inflammatory language such as saying “Arab land” which undermines a chance for peace and the UN promoting the notion that Israel is a “colonialist enterprise.”
Don’t normalize violence and calls for violence. Watching U.S. cities burn and Palestinians blowing up buses and pizza stores and then excusing those actions as “justice” and “natural protest” encourages more violence. Denounce the violence, arrest perpetrators and strip those who call for such actions of any funding.
Build Trust and Respect. It will be difficult for the media to turn back the tide and become neutral providers of information, and social media’s business model is built on giving people what they crave. As such, it is important that the source of all articles and information be included with articles. People understand that Fox tilts right and MSNBC tilts left and can thereby understand that they are only presented with half of the story. Regarding respect, people must understand that revolutions produce counter-revolutions and consider that a casual disrespect of someone or something will likely come full circle.
Embrace the Center. While people encourage the idea of a “wide tent” and talking to the “other side” it must be acknowledged that the fringe must remain on the fringe and not have seats of power. People in the right-of-center and left-of-center can have constructive dialogues of compromise while those at the polar extremes can only battle. If the extreme right or left are aiming to “primary” an incumbent in your district, understand that a vote for such politician will leave them off any committees of significance in the capital.
The capture of the nation’s capital did not happen in a vacuum and it is incumbent on all of us to take actions to reverse course on multiple fronts.