Wednesday, December 28, 2022

The Washington Post was harshly criticized - justly - for illustrating an article about a measles outbreak in the Somali community of Columbus, Ohio with a photo of Chassidic Jews in Brooklyn on Tuesday.

What makes this worse is that the Somali community is known for its low vaccination rates. They had a breakout of measles in 2017 and also this year in Minnesota.  The Hill wrote about the Ohio breakout without mentioning them at all, and NPR's 2017 article tried to explain why the Somali community was reluctant to immunize.

The contrast with how the media treated the Orthodox Jewish community during COVID could not be starker. The Somali angle is minimized and contextualized; the Jewish angle was trumpeted. 

The Washington Post has another problematic article, on a completely different topic: a review of a biography of famed children's book author Roald Dahl, the review written by Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Dirda.

Near the end, it mentions:
Yet to adult eyes, Dahl frequently goes uncomfortably too far in depicting an anarchic Hobbesian world of savagery and violence. When “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” first appeared in 1964, the Oompa Loompas were racist caricatures of African pygmies (though later changed to hippie-ish, rosy-skinned dwarfs). The depiction of Veruca Salt’s father, in that same book, sails close to Jewish stereotypes. Not least, while Dahl defended his notorious “anti-Israeli” political views as justifiable anger over that nation’s treatment of the Palestinian people, many felt this argument was a cover for antisemitism.
Dirda makes it sound like Dahl's antisemitism was simply "anti-Zionism" that may have gone a little bit too far. This is simply false. He admitted himself that he was an antisemite!

Dahl's family has publicly admitted he was antisemitic as well, and apologized for it. "We loved Roald, but we passionately disagree with his antisemitic comments," they said.

And Dahl's comments themselves show how antisemitism and anti-Zionism are two sides of the same coin.

In a review of a book about the Lebanon War that appeared in the August 1983 edition of the British periodical Literary Review, Dahl wrote, in reference to Jewish people, “Never before in the history of man has a race of people switched so rapidly from being much-pitied victims to barbarous murderers.”

He also made reference to “those powerful American Jewish bankers” and asserted that the United States government was “utterly dominated by the great Jewish financial institutions over there.”

Later that same year, he doubled down on his statements in an interview with the British magazine New Statesman. “There is a trait in the Jewish character that does provoke animosity, maybe it’s a kind of lack of generosity towards non-Jews,” he said. “I mean, there’s always a reason why anti-anything crops up anywhere; even a stinker like Hitler didn’t just pick on them for no reason.

A few months before his death in 1990, Dahl stated outright that he was anti-Semitic in an interview with The Independent.

After claiming that Israel’s 1982 invasion of Lebanon was “hushed up in the newspapers because they are primarily Jewish-owned,” he went on to say, “I’m certainly anti-Israeli and I’ve become anti-Semitic in as much as that you get a Jewish person in another country like England strongly supporting Zionism. I think they should see both sides. It’s the same old thing: we all know about Jews and the rest of it. There aren’t any non-Jewish publishers anywhere, they control the media—jolly clever thing to do—that’s why the president of the United States has to sell all this stuff to Israel.”

In that New Statesman interview, Dahl told the reporter - after his other antisemitic statements - that he didn't see any Jews fighting in World War II. The reporter, angry, responded:

 Firmly but not rudely I told him that my father was Jewish, that my grandfather had won all sorts of medals in North Africa and Europe, that Jews fought in enormous numbers in all of the Allied armies, were often over- rather than under-represented, and that this slimy canard of Jewish cowardice was beneath him. At which point he coughed, mumbled something about “sticking together”, and then promptly ended the interview.  

This is hardly ambiguous. 

Dirda is clearly knowledgeable about Dahl, it is not possible that he is unaware of Dahl's antisemitism. Yet he chose to downplay it as just some people's opinions, not something that Dahl and his family freely admits and supported by his own clear bigoted statements.

What gives, Washington Post?

(h/t Nathan)

Buy the EoZ book, PROTOCOLS: Exposing Modern Antisemitism  today at Amazon!

Or order from your favorite bookseller, using ISBN 9798985708424. 

Read all about it here!




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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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