“Joining the chorus” or preaching to the choir, pt 1

More of the quotes The Dish has cherry-picked from the “wave of personal support” Andrew has received:

I’m a Jew.  I’m 24 years old and I’ve been to Israel on Birthright (essentially a propaganda trip disguised as hook-ups and drinking).  I agree with some (but not all) of your criticism of the BiBi government.  I guess that makes me a self-deprecating Jew.

Maybe at the ZOA conference, but anywhere else, the worst accusation you’ll get is that you’re being a self-promoting Jew.

Oh well.  I guess that’s why not as many Jews are making Aliyah to Israel anymore, because they cannot capture the young generation of my peers who have dissenting views.

Except that the opposite is true, accounting for the effect of the Soviet exodus. Oh well. What a poseur.


If you’re an antisemite, then what does that make me? I agree with you on most things related to Israel, and I’m freaking Jewish and half-Israeli. I don’t understand these Americans.

I’m curious though: do you express yourself differently about Israel than Andrew? If you do not, I’m gob-smacked, for Pete’s sake, the jaw drops.

Probably a harder-hitting question: do you sometimes disagree with how Andrew expresses himself about Israel or its relationship to America?

For example, do you accept that millions of Israeli Jews and American Jews who supported Operation Cast Lead need to “exchange anger and paranoia for the integrity they once had”? Do you accept that Israel embarked on Operation Cast Lead in order to “pre-emptively tr[y] to kill Obama’s attempt to reach out to the Muslim world”?

Anyway, I don’t think Andrew is antisemitic. Accusations of this tick me off, but I’m also bothered by Andrew’s taking many criticisms of anti-Israel bias to be accusations of antisemitism — a straw man and a kind of self-martyrization.


I’m a Jew and horrified by the attacks on anyone who dares question Israel’s actions.

Yes, I’m a Jew too, and I’m horrified– I mean, turned-off by anyone who deliberately confuses the idea of “attacks” with the idea of “questions” … including this emailer.

And, I’m definitely horrified by the attacks on anyone who sings “My Way” in a Filipino karaoke bar, which certainly does happen. (H/t, Chait.) Yes, I dared question that. I think it was pretty heroic of me.

And, I’m starting to get horrified at the reflexive reaction of “being horrified”  at everything. Doesn’t anyone have respect for horror movies anymore? We’re diluting their preferred audience reaction.

… On the other hand, this reader may have made a typo and meant to write “glorified” instead of “horrified,” to begin with.

I urge you to keep speaking out – you are doing an enormous amount of good, so please don’t let intellectual bullies like Chait and Wieseltier dictate the terms of debate.

Chait was “bullying”? What, then, is he allowed to say on the subject by his legions of would-be victims?

And “You are doing an enormous amount of good”?! Where’s any evidence for this incredible claim? I can imagine this statement looking believable in the type of narrow mind who holds that the lack of outright condemnation of Israel in “the mainstream media” is the only reason there is no peace in the Middle East.

With no concrete reference points, this encouragement only seems to play into one human being’s bruised egoism, quest for endorphins, and feeling of self-righteousness. This reader might just as well have meant, “Good job, boy. Keep on criticizing Israel!”


I am Jewish and I generally support Israel, but if Foxman is calling you an anti-semite there is something really, really wrong down at ADL.  In fact, Mr. Anti-defamation-league is defaming himself and all Jews by calling you an anti-semite.  He plays right into the hands of those who say you can’t criticize Israel without being called either an anti-semite or a self-hating Jew.

Um … into the hands of Andrew?

This reader also says:

I disagree with you sometimes – but I stand with you shoulder to shoulder on your right to speak without being smeared.

Me too, but I won’t let anyone whitewash the facts.


One Response

  1. […] of] violence has a popular resonance,” that I agree with entirely. Whenever we’re “joining the chorus” about anything, we might want to meet the people singing harmony in the back […]

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