Tuesday, March 10, 2009

"The New Yorker" and Rahm Emanuel

I love the New Yorker magazine. I really do. Especially for its subtlety.

This is what The New Yorker (and writer Ryan Lizzi) has to say about the background of President Obama's Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, in its March feature about him.

"[Rahm] Emanuel grew up in a political family. His Israeli born father, Benjamin, was a member of the Irgun, a militant Zionist group from which the modern Israel was born [italics mine]..." Whoa!

Uh...did we leave something distinctively important get left out about the Isreali group, the Irgun? The Irgun, and its members, were terrorists.

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, the Irgun was:

"...a Jewish right-wing underground movement in Palestine, founded in 1931. At first supported by many non-Socialist Zionist parties, in opposition to the Haganah, it became in 1936 an instrument of the Revisionist Party, an extreme nationalist group that had seceded from the World Zionist Organization and whose policies called for the use of force, if necessary, to establish a Jewish state on both sides of the Jordan. [italics mine]

"Irgun committed acts of terrorism and assassination [italics mine] against the British, whom it regarded as illegal occupiers, and it was also violently anti-Arab [italics mine]. Irgun also participated in the organization of illegal immigration into Palestine after the publication of the British White Paper on Palestine (1939), which severely limited immigration. Irgun’s violent activities led to execution of many of its members by the British; in retaliation, Irgun executed British army hostages. [italics mine]

I don't see much definitional and/or operational distinction between the activities of early Israeli Irgun and modern Palestinian Hamas. Yet in the articles, Rahm's Dad's activities simply portray him as an active member of a "militant Zionist group" from which "modern Israel was born."

Would the son of a modern Hamas participant be described in The New Yorker in the same whitewashed manner?

Your Israeli bias is showing, New Yorker. Sad.


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