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Jeffrey Goldberg

  • Overcoming Jewish America's Israel fantasy

    The idea of Israel has long been an integral part of Jewish-American identity. But with a generational change among American Jews and increasingly stark political differences with Israel's leadership, could this be the dawn of a new era?  Last summer Michael Oren, who served as Israel’s ambassador to the United States from 2009-13, blithely offended virtually the entire policy, journalism and government elite in New York City and Washington, D.C. with a series of accusations directed at President Obama and liberal Jewish Americans. In a nutshell, Oren accused Obama of deliberately sabotaging relations with Israel in order to achieve the goals…

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  • Jerusalem, in context

    The current events in Jerusalem have a political history and context. Attempts to attribute the violence to some kind of Palestinian pathology while ignoring other factors is a recipe for making things worse. A response to Jeffrey Goldberg. Jeffrey Goldberg wrote a powerful piece in The Atlantic last week claiming to scrutinize Palestinian violence through the history of Jewish and Arab ties to the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif over the past 100 years. (“The paranoid, supremacist roots of the stabbing Intifada,” the headline reads.) Goldberg starts by discussing Palestinian “paranoia” over Israel’s actions in Jerusalem and ends with a broader, more…

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  • 'Chickengate:' In the confrontation between Bibi and Obama, Palestinians are only a sideshow

    The rift between Washington and Jerusalem has to do with the changing American interests in the Middle East and internal Israeli politics, not with an end to the occupation.  In a story in The Atlantic Tuesday, Jewish-American journalist Jeffrey Goldberg cited a White House official calling Netanyahu "chickenshit," blaming him for lack of political vision or guts. Relations between Jerusalem and Washington have reached the lowest point he can remember, Goldberg wrote. This was the top story in the Israeli media this morning. Even the pro-Netanyahu, free tabloid Israel Hayom quoted Goldberg. In his response, Netanyahu maintained the confrontational tone, saying…

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  • Jeffrey Goldberg joins the 'Haaretz'-bashing club

    American columnist's liberalism stops at Ben-Gurion Airport. But then again, we already knew that. For many years there was a running joke at Haaretz is that if every person who called to cancel their subscription actually had one, the paper wouldn't have suffered a financial crisis. The latest to join the club is Jeffrey Goldbreg, who tweeted earlier today: Ok, maybe it's just time to stop reading Haaretz for a little while. An important issue, but a crazed presentation: — Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) June 5, 2014   What made Goldberg jump was an article by Palestinian columnist Salman Masalha…

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  • Good news: Obama gives the Palestinians an insurance policy

    The president's high-profile interview with Jeffrey Goldberg will make it extremely hard for the administration to blame the Palestinians for the expected failure of Kerry's peace initiative.   Obama’s interview with the Bloomberg news agency on Sunday, in which he basically blamed Netanyahu and exonerated Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas for the intractability of the occupation, is a very important event, and very good news. With Netanyahu and Abbas jockeying to avoid the blame for the likely impending failure of Secretary of State John Kerry’s peace initiative, the Obama interview with Jeffrey Goldberg will make it very hard for the administration…

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  • Book Review: On Ari Shavit's 'My Promised Land'

    The Zionist story, re-told by the elite, for the elite. A new book by Haaretz journalist Ari Shavit won rare compliments in recent weeks from the liberal Jewish elite in the United States. A couple of prominent Jewish writers—Leon Wieseltier and Thomas Freidman—praised the book on the pages of the New York Times, the New Yorker’s editor held a party for the book and its author at his home, Bloomberg’s Jeffrey Goldberg handed the Natan Prize to Shavit, and more. The 17 chapters of My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel (Random House, English only) re-narrate the story…

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  • When racial profiling is a national policy

    Palestinian citizens have many rights in Israel, but they are not equal citizens. Only by removing all discriminatory elements from the legal system will Israel cease to be a democracy of racial profiling. Following one of his visits to Israel, Jewish-American journalist Jeffrey Goldberg praised last year the ease with which he underwent the security procedures at Ben-Gurion International Airport, compared with the long waits he experienced in U.S terminals. Racial profiling made all the difference: while Israeli Jews and many white Westerners – especially those with Jewish names - are rushed through the lines in Israeli terminals and gates, every person…

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  • After the elections, the Palestinians must scare Israel into ending the occupation

    Our post-election depression comes from being reminded that an end to tyranny and inevitable war is as distant as ever. It's time for new ideas - or old ideas that haven't been tried. Well, that was fun. And now it's over, and who really cares whether Yair Lapid becomes minister of this or minister of that; the twin elephants of tyranny over the Palestinians and the inevitability of war are still in the living room, and if anything, the country seems more determined than before to pretend they aren't there. For those who do see those elephants, there's a sense…

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  • Obama’s attack on Netanyahu could backfire at polls

    The irony: Sheldon Adelson’s Israel Hayom paper is quoting top Likud officials that accuse President Obama for trying to interfere with Israeli elections. A few weeks ago, a well-known Israeli politician visited one of the large daily newspapers. During a meeting there, this person discussed his meetings with a top-level official in the U.S. administration. “Do the Americans know that the window of opportunity to influence Israelis ends on January 22?” the politician was asked. The answer he gave was somewhat positive. It seems that the Israeli politician got it right: in an article for Bloomberg, Jewish-American journalist Jeffrey Goldberg…

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  • What Palestinians really want (A Western-Israeli obsession)

    If you follow Israeli and American mainstream logic, all it takes for the occupation to end are a few nice words from Palestinian leaders.   We have been asking the wrong questions: A popular debate in the days following the military escalation between Israel and Hamas had to do with the prospect of negotiations with Hamas, and whether the organization "has moderated." In this conversation, evidence is tossed around from both sides in the forms of quotes from political figures, militants, supporters and spiritual leaders, followed by heated arguments over their meaning, context, quality of translation, status of the person…

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  • On civilians and 'Israel's Gaza problem'

    Wednesday, November 14: Israeli forces have just killed a four-year-old and a seven-year-old in Gaza. Two children. Jeffrey Goldberg tweets*, correctly, that the fighting won’t solve anything. But his phrasing embodies everything that’s wrong with the mainstream media. It also points at the Israeli attitude towards both the Palestinians and the region: Prediction: Assassination of Hamas terror commander will not even partially solve Israel's Gaza problem. Israel’s Gaza problem? The fatalities suggest it’s the other way around. According to B’Tselem, 6500 Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces from the start of the Second Intifada in September 2000 until to September…

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  • A further defense of Gunter Grass

    The only way you can think of the poem 'What must be said' as anti-Semitic is if you think of Grass as an anti-Semite. His history as well as the poem itself point in the exact opposite direction.   If Gunter Grass had ever said or done anything that showed hatred of Jews or of Israel, then I, too, might take a very uncharitable view of his warning in the poem "What must be said" that this country, or even this government, is liable to nuke Iran and "annihilate the Iranian people." Like I wrote before, that's a misleading suggestion; for all the past reports about "bunker-busting" bombs and future scenarios about a regional WMD war, Israel is not…

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  • One more response to Goldberg's praise of Israel's airport security

    In his response to Jeffrey Goldberg's enthusiastic description of Ben Gurion Airport's security procedures, my colleague Noam Sheizaf makes some salient points about historical accuracy and racial profiling. Particularly resonant is the final point - that Jeffrey Goldberg, a Jew born and raised in the United States, is treated far better by Israel's airport security personnel than Israeli citizens with Arab names. Over the past few years, there have been several cases of prominent Israeli citizens with Arab names who were subjected at Ben Gurion Airport to humiliating procedures so egregious that they were widely publicized in the media. Sayed…

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