Israel, Politics

Feeling the Hate in New York


Max Blumenthal visited this past weekend’s intensely noxious Israel rally organized by far-right and religious nationalist Jewish orgs in New York. Cheers and accusations of “Obama is a Muslim” and a non-citizen, that Rahm Emmanuel is a “self-hater” and others like him “kapos,” and that “Binyamin Netanyahu is the leader of the free world” make this footage surreal. Unlike some of Blumenthal’s past visual indictments, however, these words were spoken aplenty by the organizers at the podium.
According to the NY Jewish Week, NY Representative Anthony Weiner sought a moment at the podium, but was denied by organizers lest he defend the Obama administration too much. State assemblyman Dov Hinkind castigated mainstream Jewish groups for their perceived silence. Fliers were distributed supporting the Prime Ministerial candidacy of Likud’s Moshe Feiglin, advocate of ethnically cleansing the Palestinians. In attendance were the Republican Jewish Coalition, the Hudson Institute, World Committee for the Land of Israel, the Jerusalem Reclamation Project, the Zionist Organization of America, Z Street, Americans for a Safe Israel, Christians United for Israel, and Manhigut Yehudit, the latter of which calls for a Jewish theocracy.
The seven-minute clip ends with a quote from my favorite religious commentator on Israel, Yeshayahu Liebowitz, “Religious nationalism is to religion what National Socialism is to socialism.”

19 thoughts on “Feeling the Hate in New York

  1. The seven-minute clip ends with a quote from my favorite religious commentator on Israel, Yeshayahu Liebowitz, “Religious nationalism is to religion what National Socialism is to socialism.”
    I’m sure that Yehoshua Leibowitz would big a big fan of Max Blumenthal’s edifying journalism, btw.

  2. Ugly stuff, but I do have to wonder how many of the reported 1,500 really hold that ideology. An orthodox rabbi of my acquaintance attended the rally because it was the only public venue he could see for protesting the administration’s stance on construction across the Green Line, but found himself extremely uncomfortable with the rhetoric he found. I doubt he was alone.
    And to both of you, his name was Leibowitz, not Liebowitz. 🙂

  3. ML, I think you may be deriving things from that article that aren’t there. What in it indicates that most Israelis would have been against the rally?

  4. Non-leftists get together = Gathering of “haters”.
    I bet they’re not only “haters”, but slave owners, child traffickers and software pirates too!
    Blah, blah, blah…

  5. Blumenthal is wrong to call them all “Jewish extremists” — clearly there were some Christian extremists there too.

  6. Blumenthal is wrong to call them all “Jewish extremists” — clearly there were some Christian extremists there too.
    I don’t live in NYC. But, it seems like this was a gathering of a bunch of people who don’t know anything about the Middle East. They’re standing there saying idiotic things. Blumenthal obviously has a certain agenda (which is his right,) so he films these idiotic statements, to further his agenda. Fair enough, that’s not exactly cutting-edge journalism IMHO, but America is a free country.
    There was one interesting moment in the video, though. One guy starts asking Blumenthal what would people in New York do if they were being attacked by New Jersey. That doesn’t seem like such a far-fetched analogy with the situation between Israel and Hizbollah in Lebanon, Syria, or potentially Iran.
    How does Blumenthal respond to this fairly reasonable point? Of course he starts talking about ‘Jersey Shore.’ This older dude doesn’t understand, and Blumenthal keeps talking about Snookie.
    If this video is meant for purely comedic purposes, fair enough. But why intelligent people take his work seriously I’ll never understand (admittedly, I’m not so intelligent myself, so maybe that’s why I don’t understand.)

  7. I’m proud of these people. They are not hateful. They have no wish to harm anyone. They’re passionate about what they believe in. They’re motivated by a desire to preserve Jewish lives and Jewish rights, and they are the tip of the Jewish community iceberg on this issue.
    When Chuck Schumer starts pinching Obama’s balls, and 76 senators sign on to a statement telling Obama to stop escalating the confrontation with Israel… that’s a bit more serious than 1500 people peacefully protesting for what they believe in.
    Elections are coming. G-d bless America.

  8. Sure, while Blumenthal is obviously more focused on exposing the extremists that perpetuate this conflict rather than documenting those working to resolve it, he did compile some good examples of the latter here.

  9. I’m proud of these people. They are not hateful. They have no wish to harm anyone.
    Not hateful? What other rationalle is there to charging Obama with being a Muslim and a foreigner if not because they hate Islam and foreigners? The next time someone shouts “Jew” and “nigger” at a skinhead rally, I’ll just remember that they’re being “passionate about what they believe in,” and have a concern for white pride and white rights. And I’ll not even begin to get into the anti-Arab racism expressed there, of which this rally is an orgy of.
    This rally is hatefest. Nothing else.

  10. This rally is hatefest. Nothing else.
    @KFJ. Fine. Fair enough. But, what exactly is the point of Max Blumenthal’s “journalism?” He has his own political views (that’s this right), and then he takes a camera and films people saying completely idiotic things, to present the “counter” to his views.
    What’s the point of this?
    When the man made that New Jersey attacking New York analogy in this video, I’m sure that KFJ could have had some very cogent responses. But, it’s almost as if Blumenthal is incapable of having a reasonable conversation, so he hides behind his dead-pan, “exposure” method.
    Take a look at this video of Blumenthal interviewing David Irving (start at minute 6:00). Irving gives smart answers to Blumenthal and, I’m sorry, Blumenthal is simply incapable of straying from his script.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhCbHZPwEEQ
    It’s just so strange that people like his work.

  11. KFJ, you’re off base. These people love Islam, a religion of peace if ever there was one, especially in New York. And in thinking Obama a Muslim, they are joined by a full 3rd of Americans, along with pluralities in Arab countries, certainly not a fringe position to have these days.
    But their belief that Obama is a Muslim who skirted constitutional provisions of birthright to ascend to the Presidency is not what has brought them out onto the streets, just as it isn’t what is animating the Tea Parties across this country.
    Very few people care, truly, who Obama is. A great deal many people care, very much, what Obama does. On Israel, his administration is pursuing policies that worry a great many people, not just 1500 inarticulate protesters in New York, but a super majority of American Senators, prominent human rights advocates, an increasingly concerned Jewish community (including JStreet, which is pushing against the Administration on a Iran sanctions bill), and a growing proportion of the general American population.
    You can call people names, you can make fun of them, bludgeon them out of the realm of legitimate discourse, but as I said, you’re out of touch on this and so is Blumenthal. I know who organized this event and how – on Facebook, with one day warning and no institutional support. These 1500 protesters are the tip of the pro-Israel iceberg.

  12. Jonathan,
    Blumenthal is working to dispel the establishment induced illusion of extremism existing solely on the Palestinian side of the conflict. Granted, while I appreciate his efforts in that regard, I also agree with your criticism of his propensity for making inane quips.

  13. To me, Blumenthal’s journalism has a clear point: hatred and ignorance drives these right-wing groups and credence to them is a disgrace to educated and reasonable people. We don’t (and Obama certainly doesn’t) need to bow to pressure from religious extremists.

  14. Ok. IMHO Blumenthal’s stupidity speaks for itself, regardless of his political views.
    Btw., President Obama was elected to be U.S. president, not a “friend of Israel.” He can do whatever he wants to Israel, and as long as Israel accepts $3billion annually from the U.S., there is nothing they can do about it.

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