by Leo Rennert
In its September 11 edition, the New York Times runs a front-page article by Jerusalem bureau chief Ethan Bronner, which, instead of blaming fanatical Egyptian rioters, assigns the biggest share of blame to Israel for the violent attack on its Cairo Embassy and the forced departure of its diplomatic staff ("Beyond Cairo, Israel Sensing A Wider Siege -- Embassy Assault a Sign of a Mideast in Flux")
In full gloom-and-doom mode, Bronner paints a dark picture of an "increasingly isolated" Israel with "limited and poor options" amid rising anti-Israel sentiment in neighboring countries.
Pouring more salt on the wound, Bronner opines that Israel largely brought these problems upon itself -- a clear case of blaming the offended rather than the offender.
As part of his dump-on-Israel slant, Bronner trots out as his first analyst Aluf Benn, editor-in-chief of the leftist Israeli newspaper Haaretz, who accuses Prime Minister Netanyahu of "not having done a thing to mitigate the fallout from confrontations in which Israeli forces killed Egyptian and Turkish citizens." (Bronner is referring to three Egyptian soldiers killed along the Sinai border while Israel was pursuing terrorists who had just killed Israelis near Eilat, and to Israel's refusal to apologize for last year's raid on a bockade-running Turkish ship, in which nine violent Turkish extremists were killed when they launched brutal attacks on Israeli commandos boarding the ship)
In the same blame-Israel vein, Bronner writes that "since the start of the Arab uprisings, internal critics and foreign friends, including the United States, have urged Israel to take bold, conciliatory steps toward the Palestinians."
While Bronner gives top prominence to Aluf Benn, the Haaretz editor, as his expert-in-chief, he fails to inform readers that Haaretz, editorially and in much of its news coverage, has a far-left agenda that assigns full blame to Israel for tensions with the Palestinians and none to the rejectionist agenda of Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority. Haaretz also advocates extreme appeasement concessions as its solution to the conflict.
The real Haaretz was spotlighted four years ago, when editor David Landau -- an Aluf Benn predecessor -- disgraced the paper during a meeting of Israeli journalists with then-Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, telling her that the U.S. ought to "rape" Israel -- to force a final, one-sided settlement on the Jewish state. Landau even bragged about his disgusting comment, telling Jewish Week editor Gary Rosenblatt that "it had always been my wet dream to address the secretary of state on vital matters."
From such fetid quarters, Bronner plumbs his wisdom.
Bronner, however, is not content with using only Haaretz to spread the Times' appeasement agenda. He follows his quote from Aluf Benn with a comment by Daniel Ben-Simon, a Knesset member of the left-leaning Labor Party, who has his own peculiar recipe for Netanyahu -- "If he joined the vote (at the UN) for a Palestinian state instead of fighting it, that would be the best thing he could do for us in the Arab world." Just imagine! Forget all about negotiating a peace deal; just have Israel sign its own suicide pact at the UN and the conflict will be a goner.
Toward the end of his piece, Bronner acknowledges that "some here say Israel is again being made a scapegoat, this time for unfulfilled revolutionary promises" However, it's a view Bronner immediately rejects -- in favor of "another interpretation, and it is the predominant one abroad -- Muslims, Arabs and indeed many around the globe believe Israel is unjustly occupying Palestinian territories, and they are furious at Israel for it."
As if his own push for immediate Israeli recognition of a Palestinian state hasn't yet sunk in, Bronner makes it doubly clear in his final paragraph with a quote from another Labor Party member, Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, who argues "The world is tired of this conflict and angry at us because we are viewed as conquerors, ruling over another people. If I were Bibi Netanyahu, I would recognize a Palestinian state."
What Bronner fails to tell Times readers is that these all are views of a small minority of Israelis, If they were put to a vote in the Knesset, they would be soundly defeated. The Israeli electorate, more in tune with reality and what's best for Israel's security, also would reject it out of hand at the ballot box. Even the out-of-power Kadima Party, which got the highest number of votes in the last election, would have none of it.
In sum, a far-left appeasement tract by Bronner, disguised as front-page "news."
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