Letter to the editor

Regarding Dr. Finkelstein

The news article published March 11 in the Daily Trojan under the title, “USG-funded speaker event draws criticism,” was a misleading piece of journalism rife with bias against USG-funded guest speaker Dr. Norman Finkelstein, whom Students for Justice in Palestine hosted for a speech that night.

The topic of Finkelstein’s lecture was the Israeli invasion of the Gaza strip last year, and he focused on discussing and affirming the findings of the subsequent investigations by the United Nations, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch that found evidence of pervasive and systematic crimes against humanity by Israeli soldiers in what Finkelstein deems a “massacre.”

However, the article published by the Daily Trojan showed no indication of this. Instead, it published outrageous claims that Dr. Finkelstein is “said to be a Holocaust-denier” and asserted through a student’s quote that Dr. Finkelstein is supportive of killing any Israeli civilian.

Dr. Finkelstein’s entire family went through the Nazi Holocaust, and he has never denied that it occurred. While it is true that he is “said to be Holocaust denier” by a select, radical few that wish to defame him, this statement is patently false, and for the Daily Trojan to publish such a disgusting allegation is poor journalism. Holocaust denial is not subjective — Dr. Norman Finkelstein is not a Holocaust-denier, and for ’SC Students for Israel and College Republicans to blatantly lie about a man who lost so much of his family in the Holocaust is morally repugnant.

Additionally, Shanel Melamed’s comment that Dr. Finkelstein “say[s] that it’s OK for me to be killed” is blatantly untrue and a very obvious attempt to defame a man who has never made any comment in the past that he is somehow “OK” with just killing innocent Israeli civilians, as the quote suggests. To publish such an outrageous and false assertion by a student as if it had any basis in reality is in truly poor taste.

We are also rather shocked at the complete lack of even a semblance of neutrality. Marwa Katbi, SJP’s Vice President, was asked by the Daily Trojan reporter what she thought of the claims that Finkelstein is anti-Semitic and expressed that Finkelstein does not hold anti-Semitic views, adding that any insinuation otherwise is a bogus claim. She continued to say that slamming Finkelstein with a baseless charge of anti-Semitism was an attempt to silence his honest criticism of Israel, and a drew away from the main issue of Thursday night’s lecture, which she stated was the massive human rights abuses committed by the state of Israel.

Running this quote alongside the opposing claims would have been the proper way to balance a news article about our event. To be in the possession of such a quote and not to have printed it strikes us at best as convenient censorship and at worst as willful propaganda.

We hope the Daily Trojan will in the future reconsider publishing statements like those above that serve to defame USG-funded speakers, and our club, with baseless accusations.

USC Students for Justice in Palestine

48 replies
  1. Rami H.
    Rami H. says:

    I’m wondering why people are so quick to label Dr. Finkelstein as a fraud (multiple times in the comments), or hateful person without offering any validation. I’m certainly open to that argument, but there’s nothing that I’ve seen that indicates that he actually is a fraud. Does he speak untruthfully, cite lies, misquote, or present inaccurate realities? Or is it that he just makes conclusions that make us uncomfortable, that we don’t agree with, or that we have a hard time believing because they are scary? From what I’ve seen of the guy, he doesn’t make up histories or deny that they occurred, and he cites his sources. So, if we’re labeling him anything other than Doctor (he received his doctorate from Princeton University’s Department of Politics), please, let’s see some real reasons why, or its just more malicious slander.

  2. hani
    hani says:

    anyone catch Martin Sherman’s lecture on Islam and Israel on Thursday? It was the biggest load of unacademic crap and blatant islamophobia i’ve seen usc pay for in a while.

    the usc college republicans and students for israel are from the same lying, immoral group as that sleazebag. props to SJP for fighting this

    • Rajif
      Rajif says:

      Ahh shut your mouth. Anyone who doesnt support your position is automatically crap. Learn to respect other peoples positions, especially when they are right. Until you recognize that there are terrible things done in the name of Islam and condemn it for what it is, youre going to be on the fringe. May Israel defend itself now and forever, from an Indian friend who has seen the same types of attacks in his country!

      • hani
        hani says:

        i do respect other peoples’ opinions, and condemn terrorism- IN ALL ITS FORMS, including STATE SPONSORED TERRORISM. For me, this is the real danger, as it is uncotnrolled and backed up armies and lots of cash. the US Invasion of Iraq, and the subsequent 100,000s of innocent Iraqi deaths, is terrorism.

        i like how you say “shut your mouth,” while telling me to respect other opinions.

        ISLAMOPHOBIA and racism are different from legitimate criticism of policy.

  3. Rami H.
    Rami H. says:

    My original post condemned the newspaper and the students it quoted for being completely wrong and thus maliciously attacking the integrity of a man and the organization that sponsored him. As I said, that is slander, plain and simple. Those students and the newspaper should be held accountable. So thank you SJP for defending your voice with this letter to the editor.

    Since then some other people here have turned this into a snowballing argument about the Middle East issue. I have already bitten on your provocation, and I won’t do it again. It didn’t take long for me to be inaccurately labeled as an Anti-Semite–that token term that gets handed out like Halloween candy to anyone who questions Israel’s illegal actions and racist policies. Send me the proverbial friend request if you want to talk about Palestine-Israel, but that’s not what I was talking about here originally.

    • Rajif
      Rajif says:

      haha yes youre so right! When people attack you and blow themselves up in your cities, just chill. It will go away somehow. There arent really people who want to kill you for religious or territorial reasons.

      Rolling my eyes

      • Jackson
        Jackson says:

        Norman Finklestein=destructive, dishonest, scummy little human being parading under the banner of academia=complete nonsense

  4. Stop and Think
    Stop and Think says:

    Please stop and take a look at this debate. None of us believes human rights violations, including killing of anyone, is ok. Could we respectfully consider the notion that each of us believes in the same principles and is working towards the same goal of peace? Anyone thoughtfully considering fact as objectively as possible (such as Dr. Finklestein) should be given our respect at the very least, regardless of his followers, or his opponents.

    • Joe
      Joe says:

      It would be nice to think that, wouldn’t it? Unfortunately, there are bad people in the world, and it is necessary for good people to defeat them — on the battleground of ideas if possible, on the battleground of battle otherwise. Thankfully, Israel has shown the resolve to defend itself in both arenas.

      • Seriously?
        Seriously? says:

        How narrow-minded is your world view? If you are so naive to think that this is a battle of good versus evil, I am genuinely appalled that you are going to graduate with a degree from any university. Please take yourself out of the TV-world that you live in, learn a little about putting yourself in another person’s shoes, and then join the debate to contribute something meaningful.

        • Joe
          Joe says:

          Do you deny the existence of evil? If your whole philosophy is based on the principle that every person, every ideology, every act is morally equivalent, then you have some hard growing-up left to do. People who would strap bombs onto their own children for the sake of murdering innocents are not morally equivalent to soldiers who would risk their lives to protect their children. Activists working to undermine Israel’s right to self-defense are not “equally right” to those who support that right. And no, it doesn’t matter if they have “good intentions”. Wrong is not right. Words have meanings. Terrorists are not freedom fighters. Certainly evil people can have their minds changed (see “battleground of ideas” above), but we’re all safer when the good guys have more and better guns.

          • jack
            jack says:

            Okay so IDF soldiers who shoot unarmed palestinians are morally justified. Glad I have heard your point of view.

          • Jason
            Jason says:

            No jack thats not what he’s saying. That is obviously a horrible tragedy and if the incident was as you say than those soldiers are obviously not morally justified. But when you say phrases like “IDF soldiers who shoot unarmed palestinians” , those kinds of accusations are often grossly wrong. So many times you hear that Palestinians are killed, but the real story is not told. Were they in the crossfires when the IDF was attacked? Were they being used as human shields? Were the unarmed civilians among people who were attacking Israeli forces?

            I remember reading a report once that said 25 Palestinians had died in an explosion late at night, and Hamas and others accused Israel of bombing civilian homes. Turns out the incident was that a device went off in a bomb manufacturing factory in gaza and the 25 people there or around it were killed when munitions exploded.

            Way too often Israel is blamed when Palestinian civilians are killed and it is actually the fault of the terrorists who use palestinians to their advantage

        • Hessam
          Hessam says:

          I think what he means is that people who declare that they want to destroy Israel and act towards that goal without any regard for human life even on their own side can be considered evil. And its really not necessary to insult someone for being in college if you dont agree with their views… haha

          • Jack
            Jack says:

            “That is obviously a horrible tragedy and if the incident was as you say than those soldiers are obviously not morally justified”

            Well… now take that logic… and apply it… to other examples… which there are a myriad of…

          • Jack
            Jack says:

            “So many times you hear that Palestinians are killed, but the real story is not told. Were they in the crossfires when the IDF was attacked? Were they being used as human shields? Were the unarmed civilians among people who were attacking Israeli forces?”

            Very clear reason why the “real story” is never told. Operation Cast Lead is an outstanding example. Israel invades Gaza but bans reporters. They refuse to do a decent internal investigation after international groups all have substantial reports of numerous human rights violations. They didn’t let reporters in because of what happened during the Second Lebanon War when their atrocities were reported numerous times.

            This is all very easy to read up and discover. Your excuse sounds like some generic CNN comment.

  5. William Buttrey
    William Buttrey says:

    I wonder how many of those here lambasting Dr. Finkelstein and his supporters actually attended his presentation. If they had they would have been given the first opportunity to challenge him on any of his statements; either from the evening’s lecture or elsewhere. Sitting in the audience a few rows behind me were Israel supporters who (I’m speculating) took issue with some of Dr. Finkelstein’s positions. They wore name badges with “TRUTH” written on them. They walked out in unison at the end of Dr. Finkelstein’s talk (save one or two). Of this group, only one student asked questions (to the best of my recollection). He went first and was allowed multiple questions of which Dr. Finkelstein addressed each and every point (he also praised the student for taking an opposing view in front of an audience largely sympathetic to Dr. Finkelstein’s views). Dr. Finkelstein then suggested that some of the other people waiting have an opportunity and that he would return to the student for further questions at the end if he wished (which he declined when the time came).

    Sadly, what I see here is a rehash of so many of the same discredited arguments (if not outright personal attacks). All would have had the chance to directly face the object of their ire and challenge him on any point of fact they chose. This is the third time I’ve seen Dr. Finkelstein speak to a university audience and he is remarkably consistent. Detractors are given the courtesy to go first in line for questions, and he does not shy away from any of them, or the statements or presumptions included with the questions.

    From my perspective, the frustration apparent is the inability to counter his points, rather than the claim he is putting forth a false representation.

    • Jessica
      Jessica says:

      I have seen Finklestein speak before, and have read many of his books. Its very naive to think that those who criticize him don’t know what they’re talking about or haven’t done their homework. I am very well educated on the matter.

      And it is too bad that this same courtesy is not shown by many who support Finklestein and his ideas toward people on the other side of the issue. For example, just recently the Israeli Ambassador to the United States was at UC Irvine giving a speech but was not able to finish because Palestinian supporting students in the audeince repeatedly stood up and started yelling free palestine nonsense until people gave up. This has not been a rare occurence on campuses throughout the US, but I have no heard of a time when supporters of Israel interrupted a speaker so many times that he was forced to give up, much less an ambassador to the US.

          • Pooya
            Pooya says:

            And rockets have again been flying into Israel recently, killing civilians, and several Israeli soldiers have been killed in the past couple weeks as well.

            If you are going to report the news, report all of it, not the segments that you want to use to support your cause. Thank you

    • Jake
      Jake says:

      I dont know about this specific incident, but the real difference is that one side (namely Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and other terrorist groups) has the expressed attempt to kill the other side no matter if it is a soldier or a man, woman, or child, and on the other side Israel does everything it can to avoid civilian casualties. If Israel had dropped its weapons at any time in the past 60 years, it would have been attacked and destroyed. If terrorist groups around Israel had dropped their weapons, there would have been peace. We cant keep justifying terrorist groups who advocate terror by saying its because of the other side or their circumstances…they are in those circumstances because of their actions and outside forces wanting to harm Israel more than establish peace.

  6. Joe
    Joe says:

    Oh my god you people are awful. The article you complain about only said that Finkeldink was “said to be” a Holocaust denier. In the same text, it accused Israel of racism and murder, without and qualification like “said to be”. Do you interpret anything less than a call for a new Holocaust to be “pro-Israel bias”? Clearly the DT is biased in favor of your anti-semitic views… if not, why would they print your Letter which is just a rehashing of what you wrote in the comments on the earlier thread? Accusing them of a pro-Israel bias (heaven forbid such a thing!) is clearly dishonest and disingenuous on your part.

    • Rami H.
      Rami H. says:

      Right, Joe. It is said that Finkelstein is a holocaust denier, which is a statement that is wrong. Finkelstein is on record speaking very clearly about his own family’s persecution during the Holocaust. The Daily Trojan failed to point that out, and thus it legitimized a lie. Sure, the editors posted the correction to the article online, but since it was the crux of argument opposing his campus appearance, the Daily Trojan should have checked if those claims were legitimate in order to ask whether or not to write the article in the first place. Otherwise it’s no better than tabloid fodder.
      You are also right that the article stated that he accuses Israel of racist policies, which is something I think he would not dispute, but I can’t say for sure. So, to the best of my knowledge, this is accurate reporting.
      The paper published slanderous statements that deliberately attacked another’s character, and that is very serious. People can go to court for that type of offense. Once is enough, but the author solidified the sentiment repeatedly by quoting Lauren Korbatov who equated Finkelstein to a person who denies slavery ever occurred, and Melamed at the end of the article, who feared that he intended to hurt her for some reason. Each time the article failed to point out that these students’ accusations were false in the most basic sense of the word.
      Lastly, HOW DARE you accuse me of harboring anti-Semitic views, as that was no part of my statement. DO NOT accuse me of anti-Semitism. If you intend to accuse me of hating Jewish people, I do not. Furthermore, I am part Arab–A descendent of a people from the Near East called Semites. I do not hate myself.

      • Jonathan
        Jonathan says:

        Umm in case you didn’t realize, the term anti-Semite doesn’t carry the literal meaning of semite anymore…..its definition deals specifically bigotry and hatred against Jews.

        As for everything else, I just don’t understand why you are so concerned with defending this man Finklestein…I’m very curious how passionately you would defend someone who does not support your position of the Israeli-Palestinian issue. Indeed, I am very curious.

        And although the writers of the article may not have completely accurately described Finklestein when it called him a “Holocaust denier”, he defenitely deserves much blame and condemnation for minimalizing the Holocaust and pretending that it was somehow exagerated for political purposes. For example, he once posed how it was possible that so many people died in the Holocaust if there are so many survivors….. That’s like asking how it was possible that thousands of people died when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima if there are so many people with radiation poisoning from it…

        No matter his familiar ties to the Holocaust, the man has done great injustices to the issue and insulted those who lived through it by pretending like it was an exagerated account made up for political purposes instead of the greatest instance of human cruelty in the history of mankind.

        Again, I am extremely curious how you would defend this man or others like him from “misinformation” if he did stand on the same side as your views and opinions. I look forward to seeing your outraged and passionate comments on future articles in which pro-Israel figures are misportrayed by the media.

        • Rami H.
          Rami H. says:

          I disagree with the inaccurate usage of the term anti-Semitism, but that is irrelevant. If it refers to a hatred or bigotry targeted against Jews specifically I am still appalled to have been labeled as such, because it is simply, AGAIN, not true (I’m sensing a theme here).
          To everything else…
          I would hope that ANY article published by the Daily Trojan contains statements that are factually based. And I would not advocate for the misrepresentation of anyone on the other side of the issue, or do so myself. I don’t see why you would even question that. This isn’t about me defending Finkelstein. I disagree with the manner in which this man was represented by the Daily Trojan and the students who spoke out against him because it was entirely inaccurate. That is all I mean. I’m steamed about this because using deliberate misinformation and scare tactics are the greatest disservice to this or any political debate. I think you would agree. So, yes, I am passionate about this. And no, I don’t feel that my stance on the issue (though it’s clear) matters in the context of my arguments.
          Whatever the article concluded about Dr. Finkelstein should have been factual. If he has stated that the memory of the Holocaust has been exploited for political gain, then that is a theory that is the right of an educated political scientist to make. That is what political scientists do. His theory should be presented as such, whether or not any of us think it is reasonable. It should not be twisted into an inaccurate representation of his views. The Daily Trojan and the students the article quoted have done that. He is not a Holocaust denier as the article mentioned, nor has he expressed even the shadow of intention to physically harm any student at this university. Theorizing about the manner in which the Nazi Holocaust has shaped world politics is not the same as denying it ever occurred.

          I’m done.

          • Jonathan
            Jonathan says:

            haha your statement “theorizing about the manner in which the Nazi Holocaust has shaped world politics is not the same as denying it ever occured” must be a euphemism for “theorizing that the Holocaust really wasnt so bad and was totally exagerated so that it could be used for selfish reasons is fine cuz its not as crazy as denying it outright”

            I am now going to go theorize that slavery really wasn’t so bad as people think and African Americans have disgracefuly exagerated it and used it for political purposes.

            No one is saying that Finklestein doesn’t have the right to make his absurd claims but that doesnt mean we cant refute and condemn his dishonesty.

          • Joe
            Joe says:

            Rami, anti-semitism doesn’t mean “hate” in your heart, it means bigotry in the world. I don’t give a rat’s you-know-what whether you:

            (a) hate the Jews
            (b) are enamored of a handsome liberal professor who hates the Jews
            (c) believe that murdering Jews will get you into heaven
            (c) have convinced yourselves that you’re unbiased, but the Jews happen to be evil
            (d) are trying to impress a hippie chick
            (e) don’t know the facts, and are parroting something you heard a celebrity say

            All I need to know to call you an anti-semite is that you are intently, actively, working to spread lies (“racism”, “murder”) about Israel, spread hatred of the Jewish people, trying to undermine Israel’s right to exist and to defend itself, and using lies to defend another anti-semite. You are working for anti-semitic ends. You don’t get “points” for having good intentions.

  7. Andrea
    Andrea says:

    Its no surprise to me that the Daily Trojan would print an article full of lies regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and specially the people which speak on behalf of the Palestinian people. As a former SJP member from 2004 to 2008 I have found many such biased articles printed by the staff of the Daily Trojan and time and again we have had to write letters back expressing our outrage.

    Its time the staff and editors start doing their part in writing balanced and well researched pieces that reflect the real situation in the middle east as is being done by reputable organizations like the United Nations, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

    This is not only a problem that affects the USC campus, but also on a national scale. The lack of news sources that will speak the truth regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is staggering and this problem greatly contributes to the fact that human rights abuses in Gaza and other territories continue to go unnoticed!

    Stop selling propaganda to USC students! Its no wonder that alternative news sources to the Daily Trojan have been printed in past years. There has historically been a lack of balanced writing coming from the Daily Trojan and thats just plain bad journalism!

  8. Rami H.
    Rami H. says:

    Thank you for following up, SJP. This lack of diligent, dutiful reporting and disregard for the most basic tenets of journalism has been a noticeable theme in articles published by the Daily Trojan. I’m not accusing the entire organization. I know you try, and I know you’re students. But these are more than simple misgivings I have. The article quoted students making slanderous and biased quotations that attacked Finkelstein’s philosophies and previous statements. As SJP has stated here, these accusations were just plain false. This is far more serious than an error in the sports section on the back page. This is especially true when dealing with the highly contentious Palestinian-Israeli conflict, where misinformation abounds.

    It is despicable to publish accusations about “what is said” of a person, while ignoring or giving no allusion to what that person actually says. Shouldn’t someone check to see if ‘what is said’ of a person is actually true? Failure to do so makes you no more credible than the ridiculous tabloids I scoff at every time I check out at the grocery store. For a student reporter and editor trying to build credibility, the Finkelstein article from March 10 was a serious blow to that goal. As much as I’d like to accuse the Daily Trojan of deliberately spinning this article, I will refrain, and hope that as students you learn about the repercussions poor reporting.

    Fighting misinformation is the utmost tenet of your aspired profession. LIVE BY IT. Truthful, even-handed reporting is the most basic of your ethical responsibilities as journalists, and the article published on March 10 about Mr. Finkelstein showed a clear disregard for that.

    • Bashar
      Bashar says:

      Ok Rami who is so concerned with truth.

      TRUTH- the only reason SJP is defending the fraud Finklestein is because he supports their anti-Israel sentiment. Its got nothing to do with honest reporting or character defamation. It’s the same old Israel-hating nonsense.

      You really think otherwise? Give up the act.

  9. A
    A says:

    Great letter! Hopefully the DT will learn from it’s atrocious mistake with that article and actually start reporting and doing researching. The fact that Finkelstein’s parents survived the Holocaust is even listed on his Wikipedia…it is not exactly difficult to figure out that those allegations about him were just plain false.

    • Jessica
      Jessica says:

      Yes! Let us always support anti-Israel speakers for political purposes!!! The fact that he had family in the Holocaust makes it fine for him to say whatever he wants!!!!

      Give me a break…..

      • Rami H.
        Rami H. says:

        What’s wrong with supporting anti-Israel speakers for political purposes? Seems fine to me. In the US we question Cuba’s policies, Venezuela’s, and China’s policies. I don’t see a difference in Dr. Finkelstein’s right to do that to Israel?

        • Jessica
          Jessica says:

          Here’s why….because it is part of a larger attack on Israel that is characterized by a DOUBLE STANDARD and DISPROPORTIONATE condemnation and attack of Israel.

          Think of all the academics and “intellectuals” like Finklestein who attack Israel relentlessly. Think about the wider international community (particularly in the UN) where Israel is condemned and condemned in the harshest manner a thousand times before a countries like China, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Sudan, whose human rights abuses rage a thousand times greater than anything Israel has ever come close to doing, are even given a slap on the wrist or asked to politely stop.

          Btw equating those countries you mentioned with Israel is an extremely unfair assesment. You named three countries that range from dictatorial to repressive to closed socities and more… in contrast to the open society and only democracy in the entire middle east (this does not mean it has no problems or faults of its own).

          And even if people were to buy the claim that questioning policies of repressive regimes is somehow on the same level as criticizing israel, where on college campuses do we see constant attacking of any of these countries like we do with Israel? This charade is getting really old….

          • Allison
            Allison says:

            Just because something is disproportionately portrayed does not mean that it makes their actions any more right or justified.

            I don’t know what media you see, but I think the clash is coming from how one-sided this debate is shown on our news system and how ignorant that makes our general population. Everyone has a sense about the terrible things happening in Sudan and China and why they are occurring. Having speakers “speak out” against the atrocities in Sudan seems redundant when (mostly) everyone knows about it and generally are against it. Instead, we have informational booths, bake sales, and movie screenings to raise awareness that everyone is happy to support and attend.

            Not everyone knows about the Israel-Palestine conflict’s causes or how the US taxpayer is funding it. I would say Americans have a bigger hand in that cookie jar, giving us a larger responsibility for continuing that conflict when the majority of us do not know about it. Therefore, college campuses in America would naturally have more speakers about political events that are happening on our dime in order to educate rather than to raise awareness about something already supported.

            (And if Israel is condemned a thousand times harsher than other countries, it could be 1) because they’re doing something really bad or 2) because they boast a more Westernized lifestyle by destroying their neighbors, which is something generally the have’s shouldn’t do to the have-not’s)

        • Jessica
          Jessica says:

          Here’s whats wrong….its all part of a larger anti-Israel sentiment that attacks Israel with a DOUBLE STANDARD and DISPROPORTIONATELY. This is most clearly seen in the international community (especially in the UN) where Israel is condemned and condemned a thousand times in the harshest of terms before countries like China, Sudan, Egypt, Saudia Arabia, and Syria, which commit acts of violence and repression a thousand times greater than anything Israel has ever come close to, are even given a slap on the wrist or politely asked to stop!!

          And your comparison between questioning the actions of those countries versus Israel is extremely unfair. The three countries you mentioned are dictatorial to repressive to closed societies while Israel is an open society and the only democracy in the entire middle east (no, this does not mean it has no problems or faults of its own, but it puts in on a level a whole lot better than you give credit).

          Even if you could equate the US questioning dictatorial and repressive regimes with attacking Israel, then why does Israel get attacked and chewed out so much more than any other country on college campuses? Shouldnt the worst conflicts and abuses be getting the most attention or at least equal attention? The day I see one anti-Cuba speaker, one anti-China speaker, one anti-Saudi Arabia speaker, one anti-Algeria speaker, and one anti-Syria speaker for every anti-Israel speaker is the day i’ll believe its actually a genuine human rights issue and not a malicious and disproportionate attack on Israel.
          Give up the charade already…

          • Jack
            Jack says:

            An illegal blockade is an illegal blockade. Stop trying to muffle criticism because it’s “unfair”. $3 billion of U.S. foreign aid and billions in military hardware go there every year. Does the same apply to Algeria? Are American citizens being killed because of the government’s support of Sudan?

            When a country starts 2 wars in 3 years, I don’t care who they are, they deserve criticism. When a country commits an illegal blockade and starves a population before, during, and after killing 1300 members of that community, I don’t care who they are, they deserve criticism.

          • Jessica
            Jessica says:


            You’re right, an injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere. However, the fact that it is such disproportionate attack is testament, a sign, an indication of something greater, of a greater political motivation that simply fighting for human rights or an end to conflict. That is why I question it. If you are so passionate and aggressive in condemning Israel for the civilians killed who you believe died because of Israel’s actions, why are you not as aggressive in criticizing Sudan when literally hundreds of thousands of people have been murdered and raped in ethnic cleansing. But rarely ever do we see as angry and persistent demonstration against Sudan, or China, or Saudi Arabia, or Algeria, or Zimbabwe, or a slate of other countries that commit attrocities that make the Israeli-Palestinian conflict pale in comparison.

            So yes, when you see that the vast majority of UN resolutions are solely against Israel, you would think that its because it must be doing something “really bad”, but the reality is that its all political and the same old Israel bashing that has been around for decades.

            And god bless America for supporting Israel in the face of so many ill wishers and people who would like to see Israel ended. I am not even Jewish but I will never stop supporting Israel.

          • Rami H.
            Rami H. says:

            Don’t rank, or assign some arbitrary value to human suffering. That is a level to which I will not stoop. I’m not playing that game with you.

            In regards to democracies in the Middle East, last I checked Lebanon uses a democratic form of government, and a few others. So again, that arguments is wrong. And we say we went to Iraq to save them and install our white horse democracy there (we see how well that is working). Besides that, let’s not forget that democracy isn’t always peachy. It can be used to violate the rights of the minority. We in the US have firsthand experience of that.

            But in relation to Israel this opens a whole new bag of tricks that isn’t appropriate to get into here. That was not my argument in my post for this article. If you want to talk to me further about the host of UN resolutions that Israel has ignored, read my post below and contact me separately. Please.

          • Jessica
            Jessica says:

            Yes Jack we also give 3 billion dollars in assistance every year to Egypt, as well as Saudi Arabia and a slew of other countries in the Middle East. Learn a little first before you ramble.

            And I think you got it wrong…when a country gets attacked on regular intervals through massive conventional wars as well as terrorist proxy wars since 1948, it is remarkable that it is still an open and free society that values human rights. Perhaps we should be outraged at groups like Hamas for instigating wars and hiding behind civilians to increase collateral damage and score media points. Let’s remember that every time Palestinian civilians are killed, Hamas wins.

          • m. pakranian
            m. pakranian says:


            I feel like you are deluded as to who and why people are criticized.

            There are sanctions on Sudan, and a trade blockade. Same with Syria. and Iran. What more would you like?

            There is no real conflict regarding Algeria’s government right now, I’m not sure what you think you’re talking about.

            The reason we target Israel is because the US gives $3 billion a year, mostly in military aid, to the country! These are OUR tax dollars. I also object to the money given to Egypt- but this is mostly civilian aid, and it is only given because of the Egyptian government’s stance on Israel.

            I focus on Israel because it is a human rights abuser, and it uses our taxes to do so. The fact that Israel has an open press is the biggest shame about the matter- in other democracies, OPEN DEBATE leads people to OPPOSE SLAUGHTER. in Israel, open debate leads people to SUPPORT SLAUGHTER, OCCUPATION, and APARTHEID. In Sudan if people oppose genocide they can’t speak up- the same in other places. But in Israel people actively support brutality!!!! Absolutely shameful!!

          • jack
            jack says:

            “Yes Jack we also give 3 billion dollars in assistance every year to Egypt, as well as Saudi Arabia and a slew of other countries in the Middle East. Learn a little first before you ramble.”

            Never said the United States didn’t. You clearly ignored all other points of my post though, which is hardly “rambling”.

            “And I think you got it wrong…when a country gets attacked on regular intervals through massive conventional wars as well as terrorist proxy wars since 1948, it is remarkable that it is still an open and free society that values human rights.”

            Do these human rights include illegal human blockades, routine breaking of sound barriers, not letting scholars leave Occupied Territories, and banning Arab parties in election? Read the U.S. State Department annual report on Human Rights in the Occupied Territories… that’ll explain so called “freedom and democracy” which applies to a select # of group. And that still doesn’t justify the killing of 1300 people. If the United States was a democracy in the 19th century, does that justify the genocide of Native Americans? Britain was a “democracy”, does that justify colonization in Africa and Asia?

            “Let’s remember that every time Palestinian civilians are killed, Hamas wins.”

            I don’t even know to analyze that statement. So the 4 Palestinian, unarmed teenagers killed this past weekend? That was justified? Under what grounds?

    • D
      D says:

      O my god, he’s on wikipedia! He must be legit!

      Finklestein is a hateful fraud, regardless of if he is on wikipedia or not


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