By Vic Rosenthal
If there’s any remaining doubt that Jimmy Carter’s book is a propaganda bomb and not just a sign of approaching senility, his letter to America’s Jewish citizens, written after a meeting with several Arizona rabbis, has removed it.
For example, he writes
We discussed the word “apartheid,” which I defined as the forced segregation of two peoples living in the same land, with one of them dominating and persecuting the other. I made clear in the book’s text and in my response to the rabbis that the system of apartheid in Palestine is not based on racism but the desire of a minority of Israelis for Palestinian land and the resulting suppression of protests that involve violence.
Apartheid? Segregation? Arab citizens of Israel are free to live wherever they want (which Carter acknowledges), and the occupied territories aren’t part of Israel. But Carter makes it clear that he is talking about the territories. So he’s opposed to things like checkpoints, the fence, etc. These things exist for only one purpose, and that’s to protect Israelis from murderous terrorist attacks. This is not remotely like Mississippi in 1950 or the South Africa of Verwoerd. There is no rational sense in which words like these apply to Israel; but of course they have a rhetorical use, which is to excite revulsion and suggest the need for sanctions.
In the last sentence – although the dangling modifier makes it unclear – I presume that he’s chiding Israel for violently suppressing ‘protests’. Since Palestinian protests often involve mass murder, I’m not surprised that there’s a violent response. But his words evoke images of Freedom Riders sitting down peacefully in bus stations.
When asked my proposals for peace in the Middle East, I summarized by calling for Hamas members and all other Palestinians to renounce violence and adopt the same commitment made by the Arab nations in 2002: the full recognition of Israel’s right to exist in peace within its legally recognized 1967 borders (to be modified by mutual agreement by land swaps).
March to the ovens in an orderly fashion, please. The 2002 “commitment” apparently refers to the so-called Saudi Peace plan, which of course includes the right to return for millions of hostile refugees, an end to the State. And “call for Hamas to renounce violence”…please. Their founding covenant calls for violence, and their leaders reiterate their commitment to it over and over, in word and deed. The thing is, everybody knows this. It’s what Hamas says, it’s what most Palestinians say. So either Carter is really, really located on another planet, or he is being disingenuous.
I made it clear that I have never claimed that American Jews control the news media, but reiterated that the overwhelming bias for Israel comes from among Christians like me who have been taught since childhood to honor and protect God’s chosen people from among whom came our own savior, Jesus Christ.
OK, the well-meaning but naive and misled Christians control the media. But not so fast:
An additional factor, especially in the political arena, is the powerful influence of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, which is exercising its legitimate goal of explaining the current policies of Israel’s government and arousing maximum support in our country. There are no significant countervailing voices.
No significant countervailing voices? The oil industry and Saudi Arabian lobbies don’t count? The US Department of State has no influence? Large portions of the media (NPR, Pacifica, Air America) are blatantly anti-Israel. Is he blind and deaf? Or just employing the Big Lie technique?
We then held hands in a circle while one of the rabbis prayed, I autographed copies of my book as requested, and Chaplain (Colonel) Rabbi Bonnie Koppell gave me a prayer book.
Pardon me while I reach for my airsickness bag, you sanctimonious bastard.