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Chomsky's New Blood Libel By: Alan M. Dershowitz
FrontPageMagazine.com | Wednesday, July 26, 2006


Noam Chomsky and his hard-Left gang of Israel bashers are at it again. This time it is about the current crisis in the Middle East, which they blame entirely on Israel.

Chomsky is circulating a letter which he got two naïve Nobel Prize winners—the playwright Harold Pinter and the poet José Saramago—to sign.

It is vintage Chomsky, beginning with its first sentences: “The latest chapter of the conflict between Israel and Palestine began when Israeli forces abducted two civilians, a doctor and his brother, from Gaza. An incident scarcely reported anywhere, except in the Turkish pres.” Chomsky typically cites obscure news reports in languages no one can read. This time it’s “the Turkish Press.” The problem with Chomsky’s assertion is that a five minute Google News check reveals that the incident he points to was widely reported by the English language press, including The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, the Boston Globe, BBC, Reuters, and the Associated Press. (Lie number one).

This is what the associated press reported: “On Saturday, Israeli commandos seized two Palestinians suspected of being Hamas militants in the army’s first arrest raid in the Gaza Strip since Israel’s withdrawal nearly a year ago. An Israeli army spokesman said the two men, arrested at a house near Rafah in southern Gaza, were in the ‘final states of planning a large-scale terror attack’ in coming days. The army did not provide details on the nature of the alleged plot. Hamas denied that the men, who were identified by neighbors as brothers, are members.” Quite a different account than the one provided by Chomsky, et. al. (Lie number two). Chomsky has said in interviews that “we don’t even know their names,” referring to the arrested militants. But a quick check of newspapers reveals that their names are Osama and Mostafa Muamar, whose father is Ali Muamar, a notorious Hamas leader. According to press reports “local Hamas activists said the pair was…known to be members of Hamas.” (Lie number three).

Nor was the arrest of these Hamas terrorists the origin of the crisis, as Chomsky asserts. Even Kofi Annan acknowledged that “Hezbollah’s provocative attack on July 12 was the trigger of this particular crisis”; that Hezbollah is “deliberate[ly] targeting…Israeli population centers with hundreds of indiscriminate weapons”; and that Israel has the “right to defend itself under Article 51 of the UN chater.” But on Planet Chomsky, Annan and the UN are dupes of Israel who suppress the real story that only the Turkish press has the courage and honesty to report. (Lie number four). By the way, even the Turkish Daily News—which simply reprinted a widely distributed international Reuters story, datelined June 25, Gaza—reported that the two arrested individuals were alleged Hamas militants, a fact that Chomsky conveniently omits. (Lie number five).

The lies continue. Chomsky claims that Israeli missiles target areas “where the disinherited and crowded poor live, waiting for what was once called justice.” He never mentions that it is Hezbollah and Hamas that select those civilian areas from which they fire their anti-personnel rockets, precisely in order to put Israel to the choice of allowing the missiles to rain down on its own civilians or to try to destroy the rocket launchers by smart bombs designed to minimize civilian casualties. (Lie number six).

Finally, the BIG LIE: “[Israel’s] aim is nothing less than the liquidation of the Palestinian nation. This has to be said loud and clear for the practice, only half declared and often covert, is advancing fast these days, and, in our opinion, it must be unceasingly and eternally recognized for what it is and resisted.” Again Chomsky ignores the historically indisputable facts that Israel (and the international community) offered the Palestinians a state in 1938, in 1948 and in 2001. The Palestinians responded with terrorism in each instance. The vast majority of Israelis and the Israeli government favor the two-state solution. It is Hamas and Hezbollah whose “aim is nothing less than the liquidation” of Israel. Just ask them. Just read their charter. Just look what they’re doing. But not on Planet Chomsky, where everything is the mirror image of reality, and where “facts” are made up, ignored and distorted to serve a predetermined ideological end. (Lie number seven).

Now look at the one truth in the Chomsky letter, the call for Israel’s aims to be “resisted.” This will surely be read by Hamas and Hezbollah as support for its terrorism against Israel and those who support its existence. I doubt that all who have signed the Chomsky letters were aware that they are disseminating provable falsehoods. The list of signatories, in addition to Chomsky, Pinter and Saramago, now includes Tariq Ali, John Berger, Eduardo Galeano, Naomi Klein, Arundhati Roy, Giuliana Sgrena, and Howard Zinn. But now that they are aware of the lies contained in the letter, let’s see if they remove their names. If they do, some of them may come to realize how dangerous to their integrity and reputation it is to sign a Chomsky letter without checking its contents. If they don’t, it tells us how little they value about truth.

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Alan M. Dershowitz is a professor of law at Harvard. He is the author of many books, including, most recently, “The Case Against Israel’s Enemies.”


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