Oh well this won't be a controversy at all ....Between about 1920 and the year 2000, Helen Thomas was a White House correspondent for United Press. When the Moonie Church bought what was left of that fabled wire service a decade ago, it ended UPI’s long sad decline. And Helen Thomas quit, which was more symbolic than anything because it had been years since her White House gossip/anecdote column had been carried by daily newspapers. But, much was always made of her historic role as the first lady to serve as a news organization’s official presidential press-conference attendee. Even though WH correspondents are literally secretaries — a job women did without controversy long before “gender equality” — it was a very big deal that Helen Thomas got to politely say thank you to the president after everybody took down his dictation. But her post-UPI notoriety was for barking lectures at George W. Bush’s myriad spokespeople, which was occassionaly entertaining, but now she’s in big trouble for telling a Rabbi, on videotape, that Israel’s entire population of Jews should “go home [to] Poland, Germany,” which the Jews really did try this one time, and it ended poorly.

Ugh. Hearst should’ve retired her a couple of years ago, honestly, but she occupies some weird place between history and “the liberal bloggers love her for saying what every liberal blog commenters loves to type.”

But at least this won’t turn into another manufactured outrage on the AIPAC Far Right, right?

Loathsome former Bush Press Secretary Ari Fleischer is leading the Fox News Gang’s calls for her firing and probably her imprisonment at Gitmo. But they’ll suceed if they just Win the Morning for another day or two, which is all it takes in our current news cycle for the actual Israel story in the news (the IDF’s insane commando attack on some boats bringing aid to walled-off Gaza) to vanish in a bunch of noise about a batty old lady who, like more than a few very angry people, has fallen all too easily from the moral post of condemning Israel’s right-wing lunatic government to the sewer of antisemitic bile. [Sam Stein/ABC News/Washington Post]

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  1. 1. The Arabs are Semites, too. People forget that they are tribal cousins to the Jews, but this fact does make it difficult to say anyone’s being Anti-Semitic when taking sides in the perpetual Arab-Israeli friction, although people do make this claim of others.
    2. Is it really so offensive to suggest to the world that maybe, if a nation cannot get along with its neighbors and has proven this to be the case for over 60 years, moving that nation somewhere else might be a good idea?

  2. Yeah, I usually love Helen, but she’s not helping here; just adding justification for the asshats who call all any criticism of Israel’s actions, no matter how brutal and unjustified, anti-Semitic.

  3. Why does Ari Fleisher wear a neck time? I wouldn’t think that there would be an issue with his foreskin covering his head.

  4. Uh, oh, now Israel going to bomb Ankara now thanks to Ms. Thomas bringing up the holocaust thingy. Thanks asshole.

  5. To be serious for just a sec, this post is why Ken Layne’s brain should be studied, for science. No one sees the big picture better. No one.

    And to be fair to Thomas, she did say us kikes could go to America too, albeit as an afterthought. See? Balance!

  6. I’d like to hear Ari’s outrage at the hate speech that horks forth daily from the likes of Beck and Limpball toward the sitting President of HIS country. What’s that? Crickets you say?

  7. [re=593022]Manos: Hands of Fate[/re]: bombs: Is there any frustration they can’t alleviate? Or, to paraphrase Homer Simpson, “Bombs: at once the cause of and solution to all our problems.”

  8. [re=593019]Mothra Stewart[/re]:

    “Somewhere else”? An interesting discussion, although probably not entirely practical.

    “Germany”? I’ll think about that one for a bit. If I can find anything offensive about it, I’ll let you know.

    Anyway, thanks for crack reporting from the Fox News team to let us know that a 90-year-old woman was screaming at some younger folks to get off of someone’s lawn. That’s something you don’t see every day.

  9. [re=593019]Mothra Stewart[/re]: [i]Is it really so offensive to suggest to the world that maybe, if a nation cannot get along with its neighbors and has proven this to be the case for over 60 years, moving that nation somewhere else might be a good idea?[/i]

    The irony, it burns!

  10. “Of course Helen has the right as a private citizen under the First Amendment to speak her mind, even as an anti-Jewish bigot — but not as a member, much less privileged member with a reserved seat, in the WH press corps,” Lanny Davis wrote.

    Geez, Helen, when you get schooled by Lanny Fucking Davis, it’s definitely time for you to pack it in.

  11. [re=593019]Mothra Stewart[/re]: What makes you think that Israelis would get along any better with different neighbours? Or were you suggesting some other sort of “final solution”?

  12. There is a perfectly reasonable case to be made that, hey, it was Germany and Poland that killed all the Jews in WWII, so maybe Germany and Poland should have been the ones give up their land for a Jewish state, instead of causing the massive, decades long clusterfuck in Palestine.

  13. [re=593048]Spike[/re]: You’re forgetting that God/Jehovah/Allah personally gave Israel to the Jews. That’s his signature on the deed. I am sure that Israel’s gulagization of Gaza is an extension of their right to smite the Hittites.

  14. I believe the point she was trying to make is that might have been better for the world if the German Jews and Polish Jews stayed in their respective countries instead of forming a brand new country at the expense of Palestinians way back in 1948.

    It wasn’t anti-Semitic as much as anti-belligerent power Israel, who receives billions in military aid to appease the right wing Christian nutjobs.

  15. [re=593058]WadISay[/re]: Yahweh also promised Israel to the Muslims and the Christians, though. I think he realized this would lead to centuries of fighting over the place as each sect tries to prove they want it and there deserve his protection more. Yahweh is kind of a dick that way.

  16. We’re going to move Israel? Are you kidding me?
    Those people are manic about their chotchkies, no way.
    Let’s move the Palestinians, they have less shit and most of it’s already busted.

  17. [re=593019]Mothra Stewart[/re]: I’m no fan of the current reactionary Israeli government, but Israel “not getting along with neighbors” might be better replaced with “constantly attacked by neighbors” for most of its history.

  18. Ok, wait a minute. She shouldn’t have talked up Germany, don’t mention the War, but people, Palestinians, were living in that land, and Europeans/Americans, who were feeling a little bad about what happened, decided that they could straight up turn Palestinian land into a Jewish homeland. So we’re cool, right? It was the last great mistake of the Colonial Era, it never should have happened, and now, to top it off, the Israelis are being total jerks about it. Unless we really believe that people all over the world have claims on where their ancestors lived 2500 years ago, the Israelis are occupiers. So they should really start being nicer about the whole thing. Ghettoizing Gaza is ironic at the very least.

  19. [re=593048]Spike[/re]: There’s a perfectly reasonable case to be made that, hey, no Jew in his or her right mind wanted to be anywhere near Germany in 1945.

  20. When are people going to recognize that Israelis are different from Jews? Saying something nasty about Israelis shouldn’t always be taken as anti-semitic. Sometimes the Israelis do really shitty things, like sink American naval ships. Sometimes they do good things, like bombing atomic weapons projects in evil neighboring countries.

  21. [re=593086]FormerDCite[/re]: Hey now, whatch you gots against the jews, with these lies, they didn’t sink the Liberty, they just shot the fucking shit out of it for like 4 hours and killed 30 some US sailors, but it didn’t sink, OK?

  22. She should have suggesteed that the Jews move to Minnesota where they have a great congressperson looking for a sparing partner like Netin-yahoo to debate. Or, they could move to Arizona and be in charge of sealing the messican border. Hopey would have to show the joos some respect then! Mideast peace solved. Teaparty nuts could focus on converting them to Christianity. Hopey gets re-elected & we all live happily ever after!

  23. [re=593080]Franklin Pierce & Pierce[/re]: “constantly attacked by neighbors” for most of its history.
    Could be rewritten as “stealing other peoples land and being surprised that they are not OK with that.”

  24. [re=593082]jennx[/re]: Shows what you know. I intend to head to Scotland tomorrow, and the first person I see who isn’t big, round, and hairy, I’m taking their house. Ancestral right, bitches!

  25. [re=593082]jennx[/re]: Ah, but see, the early Israelis had an old book that said the land belonged to them forever. And what better guide for international law is there than some old books?

  26. Did somebody change the rule about automatically ignoring or forgiving silly/stupid things said by someone over the age of 75? I thought AARP had that made part of the Constitution.

  27. Pat Buchanan says crap worse than this (and more genuinely Jew-hating) twice before breakfast every day, but I don’t recall Ari or Lanny screaming for his scalp.

    Claiming that any criticism of Israel is de facto anti-semitic is just a way of insulating Israel from both criticism and accountability for its actions. I was raised Jewish, but that doesn’t mean I have to agree with the policies of the religious lunatics who now run the country and who are, I believe, steering it down a road to its own destruction.

  28. [re=593128]JMP[/re]: My land registry office agrees with you in principle, but in practice, there was some pretty sloppy deeding going on over the centuries, with the result that WTF, that property line goes through the dining room? Of course, in property transactions, the solution usually involves money, or worse-case scenario, lawyers fighting it out, not guns.

  29. [re=593058]WadISay[/re]: You’re forgetting that God/Jehovah/Allah personally gave Israel to the Jews

    I would suggest that your reading of Genesis is not accurate. As a Talibangelical, I am struggling to resist the urge to open a bible study on this thread (because I’ll likely get banned for it) but there is a huge difference between what the bible says and what most people think the bible says. The covenant between Jehovah and Abraham would today include most Christians, Muslims and Jews among “Abrahams Seed”.
    (Hint: Employees of Abraham or his descendants as well as descendants of employees from earlier generations are counted in their number providing they believe in the tenants of the old testament and have had their dicks bobbed).
    God, unsurprisingly, is a hell of a lawyer.

  30. [re=593151]dijetlo[/re]: God, unsurprisingly, is a hell of a lawyer. Of course, God is a lawyer. There’s a good argument for the God of the Old Testament actually being Satan of the New.

  31. [re=593179]TGY[/re]: In the same way that the Fire ‘n Brimstone Satan of the New Testament was somehow just God’s prosecuting attorney/pet douchebag in the Old Testament?

  32. [re=593109]proudgrampa[/re]: Too bad she’s too old to write her memoirs, since nowadays your memoirs are the first book you write. Seriously, wtf is with all these twenty-somethings writing memoirs?

  33. [re=593182]Zadig[/re]: Yeah. Some kind of barrister-solicitor arrangement. It’s an easy trick for somebody who can split himself into three or something.

  34. If you take the long view, you can’t really choose sides. These assholes have been blowing each other up for bragging rights over this little patch of desert for about 6000 years. It’s a tradition, exacerbated the whole bullshit argument taken by both sides (and occasionally the Christians too) that “God wants us guys in charge here, in this, his most holy land.” The Israelis get to be the bad guys this time, because at the moment, they have more and bigger guns.

    As for Helen Thomas, for some reason I, too, always assumed she was Jewish. Utter the phrase “feisty old Jewish woman” and something very similar to the image of Helen Thomas pops up in one’s mind.

  35. Gawd, whatta topic for Libs! Nice to see us spit in each other’s faces over this. We all knew Helen was Muslin, so of course she’s gonna say things like this!

    Or we can bring up certain foot-in-mouth moments for Israel’s misbehavior as well.[re=593080]Franklin Pierce & Pierce[/re]: A reaction is what you get for displacing peoples; See Little Big Horn, Northern Ireland, and Africa(in general) to get my drift…

  36. OK, what irritates me about this entire discussion is that people act as though there had been no Jews in Israel since the stone ages, and then the Holocaust happened, and BOOM, suddenly they were there. Jews fleeing persecution is not a phenomenon that was limited to Germany and Poland, either. In fact, no one talks about the up-to 900,000 Mizrahi Jews who were from Arab countries, that were kicked out after having all of their property and land taken from them. The Iraqi Jewish population, for instance, basically now ceases to exist except for pockets in Israel, after having been in that country since before the time of Muhammad. People who examine the Israeli-Palestinian dispute without keeping in mind the fact that these Jews were expelled TO Israel from their native countries after Israel’s war of independence cannot have a full grasp of the “right to return.” And Thomas’s comments, whatever your thoughts on Israel’s recent behavior, just show a complete ignorance of history.

  37. It’s a shame Israel’s crimes don’t generate this much press. But let’s all waste more electricity and ink on poor Helen Thomas because clearly she is the most powerful person when it comes to AIPAC and foreign policy.

  38. ***NEWS FLASH***

    Helen Thomas has been outed by another SC “blogger” to have had sexytime with Nikki Haley and has therefore QUIT HER JOB.

    Wonketter kicks another bum to the street, raising unemployment, causing losses in the NYSE, and thereby causing the downfall of civilization.

    I hope you people are happy.

  39. Back in the day, when Israeli territory was part of the Ottoman Empire, Jerusalem had a Jewish majority population and there was no trouble between the Arabs and the Jews because they both understood you didn’t want to be the subject of Istanbul’s undivided attention. Additionally, the Sultan was the Caliph, so the peninsular Arabs stuck to their camel roasting and slave trading. Why does Wonkette hate Pan-Turkic nationalism and Ottoman Irredentism?

  40. [re=593186]TGY[/re]: [re=593182]Zadig[/re]:
    Yawn…oh look, two Atheists have unraveled the mysteries of the Judeo Christian cannon…who’d a thunk it?
    In reading their thesis, one would assume they did so without ever opening the book, kudos, I shall alert the Nobel committee immediately.

  41. [re=593058]WadISay[/re]:

    That’s right! They wrote the book that says it, so it must be true. Even if they left it for 2,000 years and somebody else was living there when they came home.

    Stop picking on the Jooz!

  42. [re=593064]Jimb[/re]: Brilliant idea! I’m sure the handful of Jews who weren’t murdered in concentration camps in Germany and Poland would have loved to stay in those countries. All those happy memories…

  43. [re=593085]Katydid[/re]:
    no Jew in his or her right mind wanted to be anywhere near Germany in 1945. Would occupied Germany have been a worse place for Jews than Israel, where they had to fight every step of the way just to survive? Is it even possible to know this?

  44. [re=593289]Oblios Cap[/re]: “They left it” for 2,000 years?

    Yea, those exiles sure were voluntary. And not like they took their semitic culture with them wherever they went, or anything. Read a history book if you don’t want to listen to the Jooz. But, maybe they write all of those, too.

  45. Nooooo, let her stay! That way dumb Wonkette commenter can agree with her.

    (And bonkers is right, the land mass Arab Jews like my grandparents were evicted from in the Arab world was collectively approx. 5x the size of the state of Israel ;)

  46. Ugh, the world would be such a better place without Israel. I remember in hebrew school my 4th grade teacher insisting that the land was empty and barren before we jews arrived to make it flourish.

  47. “…insisting the land was empty and barren…” Hey, isn’t that what the English, French, Spanish and their successors said about North America? And once they got all the Native Americans stuck onto those tiny bits of unarable, useless land call Gaz…oops, I mean “reservations” it was true. This is what they call facts on the ground. It was all a big mistake, but too late now. So, no, Helen no one’s going back to Poland, and the reservations are staying put…unless someone finds oil on them….

  48. Come to think of it, a lot of Native Americans I know have time to time expressed a wish that Europeans would go back to where they came from. How vile is that?

  49. [re=593289]Oblios Cap[/re]: Left? Er, more like driven out by the Romans, sold into slavery, and scattered. Eventually a large percentage migrated to Europe. By the early 20th century many had fled or been driven out of Europe by the get-rid-of-the-Jews pogroms. The ones that stayed pretty much got finished off by the Nazis.

    So really Helen suggested they should leave the land they were originally driven out of and return to another land that they were also eventually driven out of. Which I’m sure will thrill the Europeans, considering all the positive press the Israelis get on the continent. Perhaps America could offer them a reservation or two, I’m sure the Native Americans won’t mind.

  50. [re=593545]imissopus[/re]: I don’t think Native Americans are concerned with this stuff. Maybe they are? Maybe not. I’m going with they don’t care either way, really.

  51. I have no problem with what she said. Dirt is dirt, there’s no such bullshit as “holy” dirt. I have the same problem with people who live in cities and complain about traffic, crime and pollution. Here’s an idea: Don’t live in the fucking city. You don’t like living next door to crazy people? Move the fuck out. You want your own country? Don’t be a schmuck, pony up and buy one.

    Better yet, we could solve two problems at once: Give the Israelis a strip of land 100 miles wide along the southern borders of California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas, between us and Mexico, and give Israel to the fucking Palestinians so we can stop giving a shit about the Middle East. They get a permanent home, we get rid of the immigration issue and cut down drug traffic. Fucking brilliant.

  52. My complaint: she’s one of the many ignorant Americans who don’t realize that about half of Israelis are “eastern” Jews, Mizrachim. Mostly they come from neighboring countries, like Egypt or Syria. I know that Chairman Mao gave pretty nearly all the Chinese Jews to the Jewish Agency in 1949, to be sent to Israel. Yemenis were lured to Israel with claims that the Messiah had come and had sent planes for them. So even if “diasporism” were to become common, there’d still be a lot of Israelis, trapped by decisions there grandparents made.

    The best hope is that Is/Pal peoples learn to tolerate each other the way Greeks and Turks have learned to. They are not friendly but they haven’t fought in a long time.

  53. [re=593058]WadISay[/re]: Note that Palestinians are almost certainly the descendants of Roman Empire Jews, who switched religions as appropriate. Maybe the Chief Rabbis should just declare them Jews, like they have selected tribes in India or South America?

  54. [re=593846]zhubajie[/re]: Seriously doubt that, since Helen Thomas is Arab and of Lebanese descent. (You never heard about Ann Coulter calling her an old Arab years ago?) There are probably some other resentments going on given her background; as a Lebanese Christian she’d be well aware of the fact that there are Turkish, Persian, Egyptian, Moroccan and Lebanese Jews.

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