The Simon Wiesenthal Center has issued a brutal condemnation of the Center for American Progress and Media Matters for America, blasting the organizations for supporting bloggers who promote “dangerous political libels” and “toxic anti-Jewish prejudices.”
Click over to read the full statement the Wiesenthal Center gave to WaPo’s Jennifer Rubin, if you have a minute. But here’s the key section:
When it comes to the charges of being “Israel Firsters” and having “dual loyalty,” we not only plead innocent but also counter-charge that these sponsored bloggers are guilty of dangerous political libels resonating with historic and toxic anti-Jewish prejudices. ….
The Center for American Progress ought to stick to fair-minded discussion of serious issues about the U.S’. future. It ought to disown immediately “Israel Laster” bloggers who take the low road and drag down policy debates into the gutter of individual and group defamation.
The Wiesenthal Center took offense with several articles and Tweets written by CAP and Media Matters writers, as well as their use of the expression “Israel firsters.” While CAP blogger Zaid Jilani has apologized for using the term on Twitter, saying that he didn’t understand its connotation, Media Matters Senior Fellow MJ Rosenberg still continues to use it.
While the majority of Wiesenthal Center’s criticism is focused on anti-Israel pieces written by CAP and Media Matters, it also decries the revival of the “Israel firster” dual-loyalty charge. This libel has unfortunately gained traction on the left in recent years, as evidenced by the “Jewish neocon cabal” theories about the Iraq war, and Walt and Mearsheimer’s AIPAC delusions. It’s a trend that should give pro-Israel Democrats pause, and make them consider what the future of their party will look like if it follows the progressive movement’s path on Israel.