RE: Useful Idiot

A devoted reader who wrings no hands over dead non-peace activists who are killed attacking Israeli forces (do we mourn suicide bombers? — the rules are getting murky) and never quarterbacks on Monday morning tells me that the designation should be “useless idiot” and she is right. The next in the dock is Barney Frank, who, as a “Jew”, is ashamed — he confesses — of Israel and says Palestinians are a victimized minority. He’s calling for an independent inquiry, which suggests that the UN might want to put Richard Goldstone on a retainer rather than pay by the libel; it adds up, you know. Plainly, the J Street sewer is overflowing and washing up on the shore. Frank has sized up the situation, rendered a verdict, and is prepared to throw the Jewish state to the wolves. But he will tell you he is pro-Israel. If so, the word has lost all meaning.

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RE: Useful Idiot

Must-Reads from Magazine

Salaita, Out

Sympathy deferred.

I have written before about Steven Salaita. Once a tenured professor of English at Virginia Tech, he resigned from that position on the strength of an offer from the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign to serve in the American Indian Studies program. But in the summer of 2014, UIUC rescinded the offer, mainly over of a series of reprehensible Salaita tweets.

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Syria’s Forsaken Rebels

Has Washington given up on Syria?

Last week, I wrote about one of the troublesome byproducts of the Trump-Putin summit in Hamburg: a ceasefire in southwestern Syria that Israel worries will entrench Iranian control of that area bordering the Israeli Golan Heights. The day after my article came out, the Washington Post reported on another troubling decision that President Trump has made vis a vis Syria: Ending a CIA program that had provided arms and training to anti-Assad forces.

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The Democratic Party’s False Centrism

It's a duck.

Democrats are finally digging out of the wreckage the Obama years wrought, and are beginning to acknowledge the woes they visited upon themselves with their box-checking identity liberalism. So, yes, the opposition is moving forward in the Trump area, but toward what? Schizophrenia, apparently.

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Challenging Violent Speech—Unless It’s About Israel

The border of incitement.

The idea that speech can itself constitute an act of violence grows ever more popular among the left’s leading polemicists. They argue that employing a politically incorrect word can be triggering; that the wrong gender pronoun can provoke; that words and sentences and parts of speech are all acts of aggression in disguise. The left seeks to stop this violence, or less euphemistically: to silence this speech.

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Russian Undressing: An Explanation

Podcast: How bad is it?

On the first of this week’s COMMENTARY podcasts, Noah Rothman and Abe Greenwald join me to sort through—and we do it systematically, which is a first for us—what is going on with the Russia investigation and how it divides into three categories. There’s the question of the probe itself, there’s the question of collusion, and there’s the question of obstruction of justice. It’s really good. I mean it. Give a listen.

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