Steven Plaut

Monday, June 30, 2003

1. Well, let us see if we have this straight. The Hamas and Islamic
Jihad Islamist terrorhoid groups are pretending that they accept the
"Hudna" ceasefire posturing that the US
has pushed and Israel has agreed to. But the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade of
the Fat'h, which is under the direct personal command and control of His
Ugliness Yassir Arafat, has announced that it will NOT abide by the
ceasefire. And
already today the bullets are flying, only hours after the make-pretend
ceasefire was announced.

SO in light of this, I have a modest suggestion. Let Israel announce
that the Sons of the Maccabees Brigades, the Brit Biryonim Squads, the
Betar and Gamla Bridge Society, the Modiin Chess Clubs, and the Pride of
Judah Brigades have all
agreed to the current ceasefire and will end all military resistance and
initiatives directed against the Palestinian savages. But unfortunately
there is one group that has refused to sign on and abide by Ariel Sharon's
initiative and that is the renegade militia known as the IDF or Israel
Defense Forces. That group has pledged that, in spite of the ceasefire to
which everyone else has agreed, it will continue to target and
assassinate Palestinian terror leaders.

Whaddya say?

2. While the PC crowd has not gone out of its way to let people in on
the secret, the PLO is ferociously anti-homosexual. PLO vice squads sometimes
shoot gays in the kneecaps and in general the PLO has no sensitivity when
it comes to our homosexual brethren. Palestinian homosexuals have sought
refuge from the PLO in Israel. No rainbow flags and Gay Pride marches in
Ramallah this year.

Which makes it all the more remarkable that the march of the
heterophobes in San Francisco this year decided to make a point of their
identification with the Jihadists, genocidal racists, and gay-bashers of
the PLO:

Gay Pride Parade 'From Stonewall to Palestine'"

Posted by Cinnamon Stillwell
Monday, June 30, 2003

San Franciscos annual Gay Pride parade elicited little more than a
yawn from me this year, having grown up in the Bay Area and lived in this
city for many years. For those straight residents of San Francisco who
have already done their partying, grown up, and settled down, the
perpetual adolescence of a lot of what constitutes gay culture, doesnt
exactly create excitement anymore. The leather, the g-strings, the drag
queens, the dykes on bikesweve seen it all and were over it.

But the politics that overshadowed the parade this year definitely
caught my attention. Beyond the predictable celebration and hoopla over
the recent Supreme Court ruling on sodomy and the hopes for gay marriage,
it was the appearance of the ''anti-war'' A.N.S.W.E.R crowd that truly
inspired me to righteous indignation.

The participants held the same signs they carried before and during
the war in Iraq, and chanted something along the lines of ''George Bush Go
to Hell!'' Plastered on the side of their vehicle was the mind-boggling
slogan ''From Stonewall to Palestine.'' After picking my jaw up off the
floor, the ludicrousness of these words really hit me. First off, what on
earth does Stonewall have to do with the mythical ''Palestine?''
Secondly, the continuing support by leftists for the Iraqi Baathist regime
over the president of their own country, makes no sense. But in their
warped worldview, George Bush is indeed a greater threat than Saddam
Hussein, as is Ariel Sharon over Yassir Arafat.

Indeed, it was further proof of just how successfully western
liberals have been brainwashed by Arab nationalism. Here we have people
supposedly pushing for ''gay rights'' and yet at the same time, theyre
supporting fascism and terrorism over the western democracy that allows
them to march in this very parade every year! The truth is, the only
Palestinians who marched in Gay Pride parades this year did so in Israel,
but the irony of this fact seems to have escaped them. Israels Gay Pride
parade, which occurred about two weeks ago, got nary a mention by these
supposed arbiters of gay rights, yet here they were, out in full force
fighting for the ''Palestinian struggle.'' Talk about misplaced

Over the past few years, the gay community has hearkened back on more
than one occasion to the Holocaust, and the brutality that both Jews and
homosexuals shared at the hands of the Nazis. But all this feels a bit
insincere when the same people are out making excuses for the systematic
murder of Jews today. The pink triangle as a symbol of resistance just
turned a darker shade of crimson.

Things may not be perfect for gays in America or in Israel for that
matter, but you sure dont see people being buried up to their necks and
stoned to death. Or jailed, like the gay Egyptians who had the audacity
to take a boat ride together. In Arab and Muslim countries, by contrast,
gays live in the closet for fear of their lives and ''gay rights'' is
merely an abstraction. I wonder how the Palestinian Authority or the
various terrorist groups that control Palestinian territories would react
if these partygoers wanted to hold a Gay Pride parade in the West Bank?
Its a no-brainer.

The fact that no one else spoke up or against the inclusion of
A.N.S.W.E.R in the parade, including the Congregation Shaar Zahav
contingent, speaks volumes. As always, Mayor Willie Brown made a
fashionable appearance, as did several other politicians, and none of them
had a word to say about it, or about how much money the city spent on an
event that includes these extremists. Even the chipper television
announcers who watched the pro-fascist crowd go by, simply demurred to
''strong opinions'' among the parade contingents. None of them commented
on the utter moral bankruptcy of the message being sent out by these
so-called ''progressives.''

If the gay community wishes to create allies from outside, it
certainly isnt going to do so by pushing these kinds of leftist politics.
Some of us would be a lot more supportive if gays backed democracy and
freedom over fascism and terrorism for a change. Let the Gay Pride
parades go on, but dont claim to stand for ''human rights'' when its only
a hollow sentiment.

Sunday, June 29, 2003

"Blacks Overwhelmingly Abhor Affirmative Action"

Posted by the ChronWatch Founder, Jim Sparkman
Friday, June 27, 2003

UC Berkeley Professor John McWhorter calls the recent Supreme Court
decision on affirmative action, the saddest day in civil rights since the
Bakke decision in 1978. He writes this column in the Philadelphia

Wouldn't it be nice if the Chronicle ran McWhorter's column
regularly instead of Emil Guillermo's. We could call his column ''logic
replaces whining.''

The Supreme Court's legitimization of pursuing ''diversity'' in
composing a university class is the saddest development in civil rights
since the Bakke decision of 1978.

That's no renegade assessment from a ''black conservative.'' The
decision ratifies a practice that black Americans themselves
overwhelmingly deplore. Too often lost is that while racial preference
advocates coo about the importance of ''diverse'' perspectives in
classrooms, black students tend not to appreciate being singled out this
way. In a recent issue of Philadelphia Friends Central School's newspaper
devoted to diversity, a black teen treats this practice as an example of
racism: ''It makes you become representative of your race. Anything about
black culture, they expect you to know.'' The undergraduate-written Black
Guide to Life at Harvard insists: ''We are not here to provide diversity
training for Kate or Timmy before they go out to take over the world.''

Meanwhile, in poll after poll, black Americans overwhelmingly
disapprove of racial preferences. Typical was a poll by the Washington
Post that showed 86 percent of blacks opposed. In Black Pride and Black
Prejudice, Paul Sniderman and Thomas Piazza report that 90 percent of 756
blacks rejected admitting a black student over a white student when their
difference in SAT scores is 25 points. In the Friends Central newspaper
issue, a black teacher writes: ''I would like to receive praise and awards
and not have others consider them to be hand-outs.'' He sees this as an
aspect of racism in his life.

Sure, Monday's decision outlaws quota and point systems, but this
is window dressing. Permission to ''take race into account'' remains, and
this phrase is a fig leaf for treating students' skin color as one reason
for admitting them over someone else. But this is what most black people
do not approve of.

Of course, many insist that racial preferences are about opening
doors for people coming up the hard way, as if all but a sliver of black
people live hardscrabble existences in 2003. But middle-class students
have always benefitted most from preference policies.

But it's hard to see bigotry in the white administrators so elated
this week that they will be able to continue jerryrigging classes into a
suitable level of ''diversity.'' O'Connor's statement tiptoes around the
elephant sitting in the middle of the room: Why is it that even well-off
black students so rarely hit the highest note in grades and scores?

The answer is a culture-internal tendency, largely tacit but
powerful, to associate scholarly endeavor with being ''white.'' This
affects black students' performance regardless of class, as countless
journalistic reports have demonstrated and UC-Berkeley professor of
anthropology John Ogbu's book-length study of the problem now confirms.
If we wish to undo that tendency, lowering standards for all black people
regardless of life circumstances will only nurture it.

As so often, what passes for civil-rights advocacy today contrasts
jarringly with what black thinkers in the past assumed.

Zora Neale Hurston never knew racial preference policies, but once
wrote: ''It seems to me that if I say a whole system must be upset for me
to win, I am saying that I cannot sit in the game, and that safer rules
must be made to give me a chance. I repudiate that. If others are in
there, deal me a hand and let me see what I can make of it.''

''Taking into account'' socioeconomics is just in a society riddled
with inequality. But Hurston would have deplored middle-class black
students being submitted to lowered standards to assuage white guilt. She
would be right, and Monday was a dark day for getting past race in this

John McWhorter, senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a professor
of linguistics at the University of California--Berkeley, is author of
Authentically Black: Essays for the Black Silent Majority.


Thursday, June 26, 2003

The ISM STormtroopers for Peace and Terror:

Support unit for terror, By David Bedein

Jun. 25, 2003


Being a neutral observer in a war zone is a difficult job. But when these
observers are actually partisans masquerading as objective "monitors" of
the treatment of civilians, the images of the conflict broadcast to the
world can be skewed beyond recognition.

Such is the case with the International Solidarity Movement, and its
members in place in the West Bank and Gaza.

The ISM is often referred to in the media as a "peace movement." Its
spokespersons are assumed to provide objective daily updates for foreign
consuls and the foreign press based in the Middle East (for which the
group has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize). This has been
especially true since the accidental death of Rachel Corrie, an ISM member
killed during an Israeli Defense Force operation in Gaza earlier this

Corrie's presumed martyrdom has helped galvanize favorable press attention
and support for the group. Yet there is a flip side to the portrait the
ISM presents of itself. In practice, it is nothing less than a
revolutionary movement fighting in support of a violent struggle. Indeed,
it defines itself as anything but neutral.

In the opening paragraph on its own web site (, ISM
says it supports the Palestinian "armed struggle" against the "occupation"
and is in favor of the "relevant UN resolutions." It says it uses
nonviolent means to support that struggle.

But as in any paramilitary operation, there are combat units and support
units. In the ongoing fighting between Palestinian terrorists and Israel's
army, the ISM chooses to play the role of a support unit for the
Palestinians. While it invokes the memory of Martin Luther King Jr. and
Mahatma Gandhi the ISM rejects the pure, nonviolent vision of both men by
working in alliance with those who choose to kill people in order to
advance their goals.

At a May 6 press conference I asked ISM spokesman Raphael Cohen how his
group defines the "occupation." His definition? "The Zionist presence in
Palestine" that is, in all of the country including Israel within its
pre-1967 borders.

Cohen went on to say that the ISM view of peace would be a "one-state
solution," or no Israel at all.

ISM spokesperson Huwaida Arraf confirmed that ISM supports the Palestinian
"right of return," which is tantamount to calling for the end of the
Jewish state. On its web site it is easy to follow the group's activities
and judge whether or not it is truly a nonviolent peace movement.
For example, the group freely admits to the following:

Spotting and reporting IDF troops in military operations and reporting
their whereabouts to armed units of the Palestine Liberation Organization
and Hamas. Since the ISM members are not Arabs and since they are not
armed, they are in a perfect position to provide reports on troop
movements of any kind to terrorists who take refuge in population centers.

Intervening with IDF troops at checkpoints in order to facilitate the
movement of Palestinians between cities. Who knows how many armed
terrorists have been able to infiltrate into Israel with the help of this

Preventing Israel from monitoring and closing off the tunnels Palestinian
terror groups have dug along the border with Egypt. When Corrie was killed
she was trying to block an IDF tractor carving a path in the direction of
these underground tunnels.

The group is now launching "The Freedom Summer Palestine Campaign" aiming
to recruit 1,000 volunteers to come to Israel in the guise of unassuming

On its web site ISM advises volunteers to "have a really good story about
why you are coming, and not to mention anything about ISM, or knowing,
liking or planning to visit Palestinians. You must play it as though your
visit is for other, Israel-based reasons like tourism, religion, visiting
an Israeli friend, etc.
"So do a little bit of research and put together a story that you'll be
able to answer questions about."

By definition a movement that endorses the "armed struggle" of a terrorist
organization should itself be considered a terrorist organization.
Despite its peaceful image, the ISM has crossed the line from protest to
an alliance with hate.

The writer is bureau chief of the Israel Resource News Agency in

2. New "Thinking" on the Left:

The Left's latest panacea - trusteeship for Palestine, By Efraim Inbar

Jun. 25, 2003


The new panacea prescribed by the Israeli Left for calming the conflict
with the Palestinians is an international trusteeship, which means
transferring governmental responsibility in Judea, Samaria and Gaza to a
US-led alliance and introducing American forces to keep the peace.

Figures such as former Meretz head Yossi Sarid and former Barak-era
foreign minister Shlomo Ben-Ami have finally understood that the conflict
cannot be resolved in the near future. Thus, in their despair, they have
turned to the Americans to settle the dispute between the natives.

Some European states are similarly showing interest in participating in
such an international force in order to enhance their involvement in the
region and help the Palestinians withstand Israel military pressures.

It is not at all clear whether the Americans are prepared for an
involvement of this kind. Seemingly they will first try to complete their
missions in Afghanistan and Iraq. Washington's priorities prior to dealing
with Palestinian terror apparently require focusing attention on Iran and
North Korea, states with a nuclear potential and far-reaching consequences
for international security.

The assumption of the Left that solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
is of the utmost urgency is not shared by the US, especially with election
year approaching.

Even if it were possible to lure the Americans into taking on the
responsibility of ruling the Palestinians their chances of success would
not be great. A historical survey of the past few decades on the use of
foreign forces for peacemaking as opposed to peacekeeping is not
encouraging, to say the least.

Peacekeeping forces are put in place after an agreement between two sides,
generally following exhaustion (Bosnia) or the defeat of one side (the
Serbs in Kosovo). Moreover, the relative success in former Yugoslavia and
East Timor came after large waves of ethnic cleansing that led to reduced
friction between the rival populations.
In our case the Palestinians, especially the extremists, still have
considerable energy and there is no separation between Jews and Arabs in
Israel. Furthermore, the proposed foreign forces are to come in place of a
bilateral agreement.
In addition, the Arab-Israeli arena has illustrated the failure of
peacekeeping forces a number of times.

UN forces placed on the Egyptian border did not fulfill their role in
1967; they were evacuated upon Egyptian demand, with Israel's opinion
ignored. UNIFIL forces in south Lebanon have also been unsuccessful in
providing an efficient buffer. At times they even cooperate with our

Nor has the Americans' attempt at peacemaking been promising. Their
willingness to suffer losses in cases not defined as vital to US security
is extremely low. They retreated from Lebanon in 1982 and from Somalia in
1992 due to local resistance.
The short US military involvement in Haiti in 1994 did not achieve its
goal. The US takeover of Afghanistan did not totally eradicate terror
centers, and, in fact, the number of American forces has dropped due to
replacement by soldiers from other countries, without stability being
achieved. There are growing fears that a similar trend will follow in

In general, American imperial capability and determination to bring order
to various parts of the world, especially hostile Muslim regions, is still
under question.

A US military presence in Palestine would undoubtedly face suicide attacks
by Hamas and Islamic Jihad and extensive support for these organizations
by Palestinian society. US forces would lack the good intelligence vital
for fighting terror. And their deployment could not create a continuous
buffer against terrorists.
The American failure to foil terror would be an unavoidable source of
tension between Israel and the US. Predictably, there would also be
disagreements over the need for Israeli military actions to prevent

Bringing in American forces as a buffer between Palestinians and Israelis
would put one of the pillars of Israeli national security the strategic
partnership with the US at risk. American losses in defending Israel would
erode support for the Jewish state. An even worse outcome would be
unintentional American casualties resulting from Israeli military raids
against terror organizations.

Worst of all, the trusteeship plan is an attempt to bypass the democratic
process in Israel.
Large parts of the Left despair not only of the vision of peace but also
of Israeli democracy.Having failed to convince voters of the wisdom of
their political plan they now wish to impose their position on Israel
through the international community withdrawal to the 1967 borders and
evacuation of Jewish settlements.
The majority of Israelis do not support this plan, and there is no chance
of a government in Israel agreeing to such a plan any time soon.

Israel has the diplomatic leverage to oppose the idea of international
(American) trusteeship, which would not serve to make the Palestinians
stop their terror and reach an interim agreement. On the contrary:
International involvement would enable the Palestinians to avoid
dismantling the terror infrastructure and spare them the need to negotiate
with Israel the limitations on their state.

The writer is professor of political studies at Bar-Ilan University and
the Director of the Begin-Sadat (BESA) Center for Strategic Studies.



This article can also be read at

1. I just love this bumper sticker:
"Annoy a Liberal: Get a Job, Work Hard and Be Happy"

2. The Conservative Synagogue movement in Israel came out strongly
opposed to building a casino in the Negev because it is morally opposed to
gambling. The only problem is that the Conservative Synagogue movements
around the world have been among the loudest supporters for gambling on
Oslo, gambling on Abu Mazen and the Road Map, gambling on Yossi Beilin's

3. Well, it is one of those rare occasions where I think Sharon actually
made a correct decision. After catching a suicide bomber trying to mass
murder some children and living things, this hours after supposedly the
Hamas and Jihad has agreed to a "ceasefire", Sharon ordered choppers to
whack two Hamas leaders and also had the police arrest 150 Hamas
terrorists. This way, if the make-pretend ceasefire DOES go into effect
it looks like Israel pounded the Hamas at the last minute into

4. The NY Daily News, which is usually pro-Israel although a
sensationalist tabloid, ran a "story" that has been picked up by other
news agencies and web sites. It concerns the supposed existence in Israel
of a Jewish neonazi White Supremicist movement of anti-Semitic and
anti-Arab Jewish extremists, evidently from Russia.

The entire story is based on a web site to this effect being found. I
personally believe the whole thing is a hoax and a spoof, or a practical
joke set up by some kids. The NY Daily News reports it as if it is real.

In Israel the only Jewish Neonazis and openly Anti-Semitic Jews are the
far-leftist professors at the universities.

5. Educationland

The Language Police
How Pressure Groups Restrict What Students Learn
by Diane Ravitch
Knopf. 272 pp. $24.00

Reviewed by
Dan Seligman

DIANE RAVITCHs account ofcensorship in educationland is at once
unsurprising and stunning. It is unsurprising because many, maybe most, of
her readers will start out knowing that the culture wars have long since
come to the textbook and testing industries, and do not need to be
reminded that educators seek to avoid anything that might be labeled
racism, ageism, sexism, or any other hot-button ism, including (in a
number of jurisdictions) Darwinism. Indeed Ravitch, a research professor
of education at New York University and the author of seven previous books
on educational themes, has often made these points herself.

But the shocker in the book is its depiction of a censorship system that
is widespread, insistently formalized in endless lists of prohibited
thoughts, and acquiesced in by all participants. The textbook publishers
and test-preparation companies have ceased to look like victims of
censorship; they long ago switched sides and have become eager to muzzle
themselves. They all conduct bias and sensitivity reviews before
publishing anything, and they all have advisory boards representing every
major national/religious/ethnic background and charged with sniffing out
anything offensive to any of them.

RAVITCHS EARLY chapters offer a detailed look at the censorship rules now
in place. A major theme is The New Meaning of Bias, which is the title of
Chapter 2. It appears that the term bias now refers to any formulation
that might upset a schoolchild. It also appears that educators have
utterly insane notions about the emotional fragility of their chargeswho
are endlessly exposed via television to violence, criminality, child
abuse, abortion, unwanted pregnancies, and other real-world downers yet
are judged unable to deal with any references to these matters in
textbooks or even reading-comprehension tests. Two further chapters
elaborate the unmentionables for textbook publishers and test-development
companies like the Educational Testing Service. These are followed by
chapters comparing censorship from the Right (meaning mainly Christian
conservatives) with that from the Left (the political correctniks).

Ravitch suggests early on that many of the prohibitions derive from
complaints by the religious Right, but I came away sensing that radical
political correctness is by far the larger problem. It is true that the
Christian-conservative censors are responsible for trying to suppress
Darwinian evolution. They have also endlessly complained about literature
depicting family conflicts, teenage sexuality, triumphant feminism, and
abortion, and generally want the schools to promote their idealized vision
of the past, in Ravitchs words. A lawsuit brought against Holt, Rinehart &
Winston by Tennessee fundamentalist Christians in the 1980s accused the
firm of publishing elementary-school readers that, among other things,
belittled the government, the military, free enterprise, and Christianity.

There is certainly a powerful whiff of philistinism in some of the
Christian-conservative agenda. But it seems clear that much of what
conservatives are complaining about is the depraved opposing agenda: the
one in which censorship has morphed into indoctrination and spawned
textbooks exalting single parenthood, Maos China, and multiculturalismand
putting down Western civilization. Here is Ravitch on one weirdly
anti-American book, a Houghton Mifflin world-history text for
middle-school students:

To See a World implies that every world culture is wonderful except for
the United States. It lauds every world culture as advanced, complex, and
rich with artistic achievement, except for the United States. Readers
learn that people in the United States confront such problems as
discrimination, poverty, and pollution. Those who came to this country
looking for freedom, the book says, found hardship and prejudice; the
immigrants did all the hard work, but the settled population hated and
feared them.

The proliferation of textbooks like To See a World suggests that the
promoters of political correctness have been making far more headway in
the culture wars than the Christian conservatives. The publishers clearly
despise the conservatives, and have occasionally battled them in court.
They also appear to inhabit much the same mental universe as the feminists
and activists coming at them from the Left. Documents submitted in the
Tennessee suit against Holt, Rinehart & Winston indicate that the companys
editors were privately rather sympathetic to their radical critics. One
supervising editor had bitterly attacked the conservatives as
totalitarians while characterizing the companys left-wing critics as
positive pressure groups.

BUT EVEN if the textbook publishers had the nerve and inclination to take
on their critics, they would almost certainly not prevail. Fighting in
court looks to be a losing move: Holt ultimately won the long and
contentious Tennessee case in the U.S. Supreme Court, but the series at
issue did not survive the bitterness engendered by the process, and was
soon out of print. And challenging the critics in the arena of politics is
even more problematical.

Preparing a new textbook series is enormously expensive, and makes
economic sense only if it sells in a number of the larger states. Texas
and California are particularly crucial, since they are the largest of the
two dozen states that make statewide purchases. Both Texas and California
have education departments that evaluate prospective textbooks and hold
public hearings before making any purchases. The Texas hearings have often
featured ambushes by conservative activists. In California, the publishers
know what to expect from the states social content guidelines, but meeting
them presents challenges.

The California guidelines, which are written into state law, are a
fantastic exercise in proportionalitywith respect not only to gender and
ethnicity but to occupations, all accompanied by two strictly enforced
rules: (1) the number of references to each group is expected to match the
states actual demographic realities, and (2) no adverse reflections on any
group. The last thing a publisher needs in this situation is to have its
prospective texts denounced at the hearings for violating state standards.
And so, inevitably, publishers mercilessly censor their own material in an
effort to forestall any possible objections.

The details Ravitch lays on the table here are astonishing. Some are also
hilarious: educational bureaucrats in California ruled against one edition
of The Little Engine That Coulda long-time favorite in the kindergarten
leaguesbecause the anthropomorphic engine in the illustration appeared to
be male. Rated equally risible on my scorecard are the guidelines employed
by Holt concerning Jews. It appears that textbooks published by the
company for use in California may not depict Jews as diamond cutters,
jewelers, doctors, dentists, lawyers, classical musicians, tailors, or
shopkeepers. Hard-hitting outfielders appear to be okay.

Three publishersGlencoe, Houghton Mifflin, and Prentice Hallemploy the
same individual, who is based at the Council on Islamic Education, to
review all references to Islam. Since criticism is unthinkable in writing
about religion, the history texts are, in Ravitchs words, tongue-tied when
dealing with Islamic fundamentalism. A Harcourt Brace textbook called
World History: The Human Experience blandly explains that the radical
Islamists want to return to Muslim traditions (the nature of the
traditions is not identified), and compares them with conservative
Protestants in the United States.

The regulations governing textbook production guarantee not only that the
books will be staggering bores, but that they will be expensive to
produce. The expense problem is magnified by the common requirement that
successive new editions bring things up to datethat modern-history texts
take note of, say, the latest President, even if in a passing reference.
The heavy investment costs, combined with tlines a three-step proposal for
bringing this about. The process would begin with elimination of the
statewide purchasing process; feature a sunshine program in which both
publishers and state education departments would make public their
bias-and-sensitivity guidelines; and, finally, encourage an educational
system in which teachers are better-trained and less dependent on

I did not find this convincingpossibly because the proposal is so brief
and sketchy, possibly because Ravitchs program would require an aroused
majority of parents who, so far, at least, show no signs of understanding
that the textbooks are so terrible. And possibly because, in the pages
leading up to the proposal, Ravitch has so persuasively pointed up the
deeply entrenched nature of the censorship regime.

DAN SELIGMAN is a contributing editor of Forbes.

6. Professors for Suicide Bombers
By Edward Alexander
American Spectator | June 26, 2003

Of the variegated forms of murderous assault that the Palestinian Arabs
have unleashed against Israel since they began the Al-Aqsa Intifada - the
Oslo War - in September 2000, none has proved so cruel or lethal, or so
perfectly embodied absolute evil, as suicide bombings. Certainly none has
exercised so hypnotic a spell upon the "learned classes." Since the
beginning of Arafat's campaign to "soften up" Israel up for concessions
even more far-reaching than those of the Oslo accords, 292 suicide bombers
have succeeded in detonating themselves-in crowded buses and cafes, in
university cafeterias, at a Passover seder, and almost anyplace where
children could be found in sizable numbers. They have killed 330 people
and maimed thousands.

These human bombs, most of them teenagers inculcated from kindergarten
with Jew-hatred, act out of a superabundance of hope: hope of driving the
Jews out of Israel; hope of making their families wealthy with the
enormous bonuses formerly guaranteed by Iraq and Arafat, now by other Arab
(and Iranian) benefactors; and above all, hope of heaven. And so, of
course, professors imprisoned in Marxist cliches of socioeconomic
determinism have concluded-on the basis of no evidence whatever-that the
suicide bombers, mostly products of upper middle class families, act out
of poverty, hopelessness, and despair. Princeton historian Sean Wilentz
has observed that the "root cause" of suicide bombings is "money,
education and privilege." Islamic Jihad has itself declared: "We do not
take depressed people [to become suicide bombers]."

This particular form of atrocity has not only failed to disturb the
equanimity of our heavily petted professors, but has elicited from many of
them a stream of rhapsodic admiration, sympathetic identification-with the
murderers, not their victims-and high-toned apologia. A few examples from
among many-a philosopher, a literary critic, and a theologian-will
illustrate the pattern.

Ted Honderich, a Canadian-born philosopher who became a British subject
and spent his career in England, has been a popular speaker on North
American campuses, where he seems to appeal powerfully to the new
bloodlust among the learned-especially where it is Jewish blood that is in
question. Although his speciality is "Mind and Logic," Honderich's itch to
be clever has often led him to stentorian pronouncements about politics,
especially violent politics. In 1980 he published an "ethical" defense of
violence and mass murder called Violence for Equality, a title that calls
to mind Dickens' encapsulation (in A Tale of Two Cities) of revolutionary
France's Reign of Terror: "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, or Death."

Not long after 9/11, Honderich decided to shine the light of pure reason
and moral philosophy upon that day's horrific massacres in a book called
After the Terror. The essence of his argument is that there is no moral
distinction between acts of omission and acts of commission. The West,
having failed to eliminate the poverty that its capitalist system brought
to the world, was collectively responsible for 9/11. "Is it possible,"
Honderrich asks, "to suppose that the September 11 attacks had nothing at
all to do with...Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and Sierra Leone?" He stops a
hair short of saying that bin Laden and his fellow idealists were
justified in murdering thousands of people in order to feed millions.

The philosopher is far less cautious about the "moral right" of
Palestinian Arabs to blow up Jews, a right he defends vigorously: "Those
Palestinians who have resorted to violence have been right...and those who
have killed themselves in the cause of their people have indeed sanctified
themselves." In an interview, the eminent logician explained the
distinction between suicide bombings in Manhattan and in Jerusalem: "The
likely justification depends importantly on the fact that the suffering
that is caused does have a probability of success." In other words, if
Palestinian terrorists should succeed in their goal of destroying Israel,
mass murder will have been justified; if they fail, it will not.

Upon finishing After the Terror, Honderich - a socialist millionaire -
offered to donate 5,000 British pounds from his advance on royalties to
Oxfam. But to his astonishment - and indeed that of many who have observed
England's moral debacle of recent years - the charity refused the money,
which it viewed as morally tainted by what old-fashioned people call
incitement to murder. "Oxfam's purpose," said a spokesman, "is to overcome
poverty and suffering. We believe that the lives of all human beings are
of equal value. We do not endorse acts of violence."

But Honderich's North American audiences have been far less squeamish.
Palestinian Arabs, he told a receptive crowd in Toronto in September 2002,
have a "moral right" to blow up Jews, and he very much wanted to encourage
them to exercise that right, i.e., to do still more. "To claim a moral
right on behalf of the Palestinians to their terrorism is to say that they
are right to engage in it, that it is permissible if not obligatory."

Honderich spent his academic career at University College in London. Those
familiar with that institution know that it houses the nicely-dressed
skeleton (and Madame Tussaud wax head) of Jeremy Bentham, the philosopher
who measured morality by the quantity of pleasure delivered: if the
greatest happiness of the greatest number of citizens could be arrived at
by 29 of them deciding, because they had the power to do so, to feast upon
citizen number 30, then it was right and proper to do so. If Dostoevsky's
idealistic utilitarian Raskolnikov was Bentham with an axe in his hand,
then Honderich is Bentham with a bomb in his brain.

Nor is he the only academic luminary whose lucubrations on suicide bombing
demonstrate the explosive power of boredom. There is also Columbia
University's Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak. What philosophy has become in the
hands of Honderich, the opaque pseudo-jargon of literary postmodernism has
become in the hands of Spivak. George Orwell wrote in 1946 that in our
time "political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and
murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind."
Orwell's crowning example was "a comfortable English professor" defending
Soviet totalitarianism and mass murder with polysyllabic gibberish and
Latinized euphemism. Already in 1989, Spivak had "explained" Edward Said's
call for the murder of Palestinian Arab "collaborators" as "words for
Palestinian solidarity." But in June of 2002, speaking at Leeds
University, this celebrated tribune of "international feminism" outdid
even herself:

"Suicide bombing-and the planes of 9/11 were living bombs-is a purposive
self-annihilation, a confrontation between oneself and oneself, the
extreme end of autoeroticism, killing oneself as other, in the process
killing others....Suicidal resistance is a message inscribed on the body
when no other means will get through. It is both execution and die with me for the same cause, no matter which side you
are on. Because no matter who you are there are no designated killees
[sic] in suicide bombing...It is a the state terrorism
practiced outside of its own ambit by the United States and in the
Palestinian case additionally to an absolute failure of hospitality."

This is what Lionel Trilling called the languag of non-thought, employed
to blur the distinction between suicide and murder, to obliterate the
victims-"no designated killees" here!-metaphysically as well as

By bringing America into the range of her imperial intellect, Spivak goes
beyond Honderich. Although he blamed America itself for the Arab massacres
of 9/11, he stopped short of moral justification for the attack; like many
other English academics he is hesitant about biting the hand he hopes will
feed him. But Spivak, already comfortably ensconced at Morningside
Heights, has no such compunction.

The third member of my trio of academic apologists for suicide bombing is
Karen Armstrong, a foinarily attentive sixth-grader.

Hitler's professors were the first to make anti-Semitism both academically
respectable and complicit in crime. They have now found their successors
in Arafat's professors, whose grotesque antics serve as a reminder that
knowledge is one thing, virtue another. If you expect moral nourishment
from professors, you should try getting warmth from the moon.

7. I love Ann Coulter:

8. Moslem Anti-Semitism:

9. Affirmative Action is supposedly compensation for those people who
were in the past victims of discrimination. But people who do not fall into
the racialist "in" categories for preferences in the United States, and Jews
are among these except when Jews list themselves as Asians, Hispanics, or
African-Americans (such as those with family from South Africa or
Morocco), are victims of discrimination by the racist affirmative
apartheid system. So I think someone should get a good lawyer and sue to
be compensated for being discriminated against by the affirmative action
selectionists and racialists. Let us call the new program of
compensation Reverse Affirmative Action or Reverse-reverse discrimination.

Wednesday, June 25, 2003

1. Yes!!!
>From the WSJ:

How Far Does Diversity Go?

Justices' Ruling May Spur
Others to Seek Preferences

Because Jews are overrepresented in higher education compared with their
share of the U.S. population, Jewish students normally don't receive
preference in admissions.

Yet Franklin Rubinstein and Daniel Sokol, both Jewish , qualified for an
admissions boost at the University of Chicago Law School, where they
enrolled in 1998. The reason: Mr. Rubinstein's mother is Mexican-American
and Mr. Sokol was born in Panama, so both applicants legitimately checked
themselves off as Hispanics -- an underrepresented group.

2. Decon Conmen at the Hebrew U:

Blood Libel at Haaretz?
by Steven Plaut
June 24, 2003

Haaretz is Israels most radically Far Left and Post-Zionist newspaper. Its
notion of pluralism is to run a single non-Leftist article (often by Moshe
Arens) for every 100 or so Leftist articles that it runs. It features
among its stable of Near-Solid-Pink commentators such illuminati as Amira
Hass and Gideon Levy, people who have never heard of any Palestinian
atrocities committed against Jews worth denouncing, or that were not the
understandable response to occupation. My colleague at the University of
Haifa, Arnon Sofer, has suggested that the paper change its name to
Al-Ard, Haaretz in Arabic. Its editorials are generally more pro-Arab than
those in Al-Ahram or Al-Jazeera. So I guess the running of an anti-Jewish
blood libel in the paper should not come as too big of a surprise.

Of course, Haaretz would not be the only paper accusing Israel of such
things as poisoning innocent Arabs. Al-Ahram has done so repeatedly (see
this online edition of the newspaper from March, 2003). Various papers
have claimed that Israel is planning to poison Hamas and Jihad terrorists
around the world (not that this would be such a bad idea). Numerous webs
sites accuse Israel of using poison against Arabs, although these sites
often also deny there was ever any Nazi Holocaust of the Jews.

In recent months, the media have repeatedly run "news stories" amounting
to little more than sensational anti-Semitic libels, little better than
the filth spread in the Middle Ages. Stories of Jews poisoning wells and
torturing and carrying our medieval atrocities. Some of these were spread
in the Arab press, others spread by the Far Left Israeli Professors for a
Second Holocaust. Even Suha, the bovine spouse of His Ugliness Yasser
Arafat, insisted the Jews poison Arab wells, while The Hillary sat and
clapped politely.

Among these was a story about Israeli soldiers carving a Red Star of David
in the arm of an Arab boy. It turned out to be a red Star of David on a
band-aid of the sort routinely provided by Israel's Red Magen David
(Israels emergency medical relief agency, like the Red Cross). Several
Israeli leftist professors had posted that story on web sites, without the
band-aid clarification. Then there were the tall tales of evil settlers
tossing Arab children out of windows, which proved to be nothing more than
the wild imagination of the Levantine Lunatic Fringe. There was that story
a few years back of Israel shooting poison gas into an Arab girls school
and causing mass panic. Turned out the "poison gas" was pollen from
flowers in season.

Then there were the urban legends, spread by the PLO and its amen
choruses, about Israeli choppers dropping poisoned candy in Gaza. There
were the Arab news reports about Jewish settlers poisoning the farm
animals of Arabs, a lie financed by the European Union, by the way
( The man with the pubic
hair on his face at the Palestinian Authority told CNN on February 15,
2001, that Israel was using poison gas against Palestinians. Palestine
Chronicle, a web site of choice for many Israeli Jewish leftist
professors, has repeated the fibs
as has the misnamed Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR). And so on
and so on.

Some of the same media outfits insisting we must all be skeptical about
Saddams weapons of mass destruction, now hidden in Syria, until scientific
proof emerges, have never felt the need for any empirical evidence to
prove any of these Levantine lies about Israel.

The Jenin operation gave birth to oodles of such stories. Like Israel
blowing up a hospital wing that it turns out never existed and had never
been built. Or like Israel committing mass murders of Jenin civilians and
other war crimes. This went on until the UN investigated and found there
was no massacre at all, and even Shimon Peres confirmed that less than 20
civilians died in Jenin - less than in the Netanya Passover massacre that
triggered the incursion in the first place.

It is against such a background that we read the latest anti-Semitic blood
libel, this time in Haaretz, June 23, 2003. Haaretz has a long history of
running lurid stories about the alleged abuses of Arabs by settlers.
Haaretz Amira Hass got convicted in court for libel a few years back
because of one such story that turned out to be a fabrication. In general,
if one takes a Haaretz story about settlers and replaces the term settler
with Jew, one would have a ready-made feature that could fit comfortably
onto any neonazi web site.

On June 23, Haaretz ran a story about yet another atrocity committed by
the Jews against the poor oppressed Arabs. I reprint the headline for you
here: "Soldier charged with making Palestinian woman drink poison, by
Gideon Alon and Amos Harel. The opening paragraph of the story began: "A
woman soldier was yesterday charged with forcing a Palestinian woman at
gunpoint to drink a highly toxic liquid that made her blind and that
caused external and internal burns that needed hospital treatment. "

Now, before telling you the real story, let us note the ease with which
Haaretz, which some have suggested seeks to be Israel's main Hebrew
Palestinian newspaper, chose to print out such a story. I am curious
whether the people involved will sue the papers derriere for libel.

So, what really happened? And what is Haaretz writing about? Well, it
turns out Israeli soldiers are on alert for Arabs trying to smuggle
bottles of poison into Israeli areas to try to mass-murder Jews for peace.
There have already been attempts by Palestinians at protesting occupation
via mass poisoning of Jews in Jerusalem and elsewhere. Three peace
partners were arrested on September 9, 2002, and charged with trying to
use poison to mass murder customers in a caf. Even the BBC reported that
one (! On April 26, 2002, a
Palestinian plot to poison the Israeli water supply with cyanide was
uncovered. The Palestinians have repeatedly laced the bombs set off by
suicide bombers with various poisons, although fortunately (if that is the
correct word) these tend to be incinerated in the explosions.

A month or so ago, a woman soldier was at a checkpoint when a Palestinian
woman carrying a suspicious-looking bottle tried to pass through. The
soldierette asked what the bottle contains. The woman says water. Good,
says the soldierette, prove that to me by taking a swig and then you can
go through.

Now, before continuing, let me put this dramatic saga into its proper
context. Last summer, I was checking in with the family at the Tokyo
airport when the Tokyo security people decided to give the Plaut family an
extra-thorough inspection, what with their suspicious Middle East faces
and a Harry Potter book in Hebrew and all. The family accepted the extra
attention with equanimity, understanding and even happiness, encouraging
the Japanese to inspect as thoroughly as possible, to their hearts
content. The guards opened one bag and found a bottle of clear liquid.
What is this? they asked in broken English. Allergy medicine for junior,
we replied. Prove it, oh distinguished tourist-san, says the guard. With
pleasure, replies the Mrs. and
She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed-in-the-Plaut-Household. She dips her pinky in the
liquid and gives youngest son a lick of it to prove it is not
nitroglycerin or any other bad stuff. Multi-lingual smiles and handshakes
later, we boarded our plane for Honolulu, none the worse for the
inspection, and junior's allergy even slightly improved.

I mention all this, because the Israeli soldierette and heroine of the
Haaretz scoop did exactly the same thing as the Tokyo security guards,
with far more justification, and simply followed a very similar routine.
Of course, as it turned out, the Palestinian madame was carrying a
dangerous poisonous substance. When soldierette demanded that the woman
prove the substance was harmless water by taking a chug-a-lug, she was
following reasonable procedures. Oded Savorai, the soldier's defense
attorney, claims the soldiers version of events is corroborated by
others present. The Palestinian woman chugged and lugged and collapsed and
was hospitalized, at Israeli taxpayer expense, while the soldierette was
tossed into the military clink.

Now if you read the small print in the Haaretz article, then you might
figure out what the actual story here is. But if you only read the
headline, you will have a great deal of trouble distinguishing it from
those in certain other newspapers and web sites - those with a slightly
different political agenda, which does not necessarily include the
survival of Israel and Jews.
Steven Plaut teaches at the University of Haifa and is author of The Scout
(available from Gefen Publishing House: More of his writings can be
seen on the New Plaut Blog.

3. Interesting reading:

and also
and also

1. Blood libels:

2. You know how the whole world is screaming that long-term ?occupation? is a completely unacceptable thing, indeed a darned crime? Especially when the occupier transfers some of its population into the occupied lands? And that Israel?s 36 year occupation is without precedent in human history and a violation of all that is sacred?

Well consider this! It is now exactly 54 years since the invasion of Tibet by China took place, 54 years of illegal occupation of Tibet by China. China did NOT invade Tibet as part of a defense counter-attack after Tibet had attacked China. Tibet never attacked China and had no territorial claims on China and never threatened China. Tibet had never been part of China, although had been made part of the Manchu Empire by the Manchu (non-Chinese) emperors of China for a while. Tibet was racially and culturally and religious NOT Chinese. Then China transferred millions of its own people as colonists and ?settlers? into Tibet with the aim of weakening the Tibetans demographically.

And what is the reaction of the Caring Left and the Bleeding Hearts around the world who swear that there is no war crime as awful as ?occupation?? Where are the Women in Black and the others who insist that Israeli settlers are genocidal criminals and the obstacle to peace? Nada. Silence.

You think maybe it has something to do with the fact that eliminating the illegal Chinese occupation of Tibet would not achieve the genocide of Jews?

Well, the Supreme Court has coddled the Liberals and the Racist Left in the US and has ?koshered? affirmative action racism, dumbed down standards, college apartheid, quotas and discrimination.

But the great irony is that the very people who pushed for this atrocity, the Liberuhs, are also the same people who never rest in their battle against ?racial profiling?. They are the ones who insist that the police must not stop black teenagers as suspects in investigating crimes any more so than 90 year old nuns. They are the ones who insist that Amish grandmothers must be checked at airports exactly the same as Saudis and Iraqis in robes with banners screaming Itbach el-Yahud.

Well, let us cut to the chase, affirmative action is not now and never was anything other than racial profiling. It is Politically Correct racial profiling. Where every American black is regarded as underprivileged and oppressed even if he was born to a Nigerian oil magnate or to a pair of millionaire American tort lawyers. Every white person is regarded as an oppressor responsible for slavery, including a Jewish immigrant just off the plane from Kazakhstan. Asian Americans are underprivileged unless they live in California, in which case they are over-represented elitists. The great grandchildren of Spanish slave owners in Latin America and the Indies receive preferences to compensate them for past slavery.

I repeat my earlier suggestion for sabotaging US affirmative action racism using guerilla tactics. On affirmative action forms, all Jews should record themselves as ?Asian Americans?. After all, all Jews come ultimately from Asia, if one goes back far enough. Many can read and speak an Asian language (Hebrew). Let us watch the apartheid apparatchiks try to prove that Asia ends at the Himalayas and does not include the Fertile Crescent. So what if many of us look Occidental. What are they going to do, define ?Asian? based on measuring noses and skulls like in Germany in the 40s?

Many of you can also properly list yourself as Hispanic, because of some Sephardic ancestors on any side of the family. It does not matter if you go to an Ashkenazi synagogue. It does not matter if you do not speak Spanish ? many other Hispanics do not. One eighth Sephardic sounds to me more than sufficient to count oneself legitimately as a Hispanic.

Let us then watch the PC racialists try to sort that out.

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Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Re-Posting of older piece:

January 30, 2002

Anti-Jewish Apartheid Comes to Israeli Academia

It is now official. Yesterday the Israeli Council on Higher Education
decided to make Jews second class citizens within Israeli universities.
Yes, after 1300 years in which Jews were discriminated against in the
Middle East and discrimination in favor of Arabs took place, the
semi-governmental Council on Higher Education has decided that Israeli
universities must discriminate in favor of Arabs and against Jews.
To put this into context, let us note that the decision to discriminate in
favor of Arabs and effectively remove all entrance requirements and
standards for admissions of Arab students into Israel universities comes
as a de facto reward for the radicalization and nazification of most (but
not all) Arab students at Israeli universities in recent years. The Arab
student organizations are without exceptions bastions of extremism.
Islamist fundamentalists are regularly hosted by them
on campus.

A group of Arab students at Haifa University, which has the largest Arab
student population, recently called openly for the destruction of the
country. Arab students at the universities routinely prance about campus
with PLO flags, and with sweatshirts with the face of Nasser, the gent
that planned to send missiles with poison gas to annihilate the Jews. The
standard slogan at their rallies is "I am a Proud Palestinian," and so far
no campus authorities have suggested that these proud Palestinians be
transferred to schools in Nablus and Ramallah. Arab student rallies often
turn violent. Rumors have it that Arab students sometimes hold dorm
parties to celebrate suicide murders of Jews.

Arab students already enjoy special preferences under the existing system.
Unlike Jews, who serve three years in the military thanks to the Arab
aggression against Israel supported by most Israeli Arab students, the
Arab students generally do not serve their country in any way, with some
Druse and Bedouin exceptions. Arabs already get preferences for cheap
scarce dorm rooms, on the grounds that they live further away. The
government has long kept tuition at Israeli universities close to zero, in
part so that Arabs would not "suffer" when army veterans would get vet
benefits in the form of tuition vouchers. The nearly free tuition amounts
to granting Arab students vet benefits without their being inconvenienced
by serving their country. In other words, Israel already has a system in
place whereby Jews are often treated as second-class citizens.

The problem is that as long as Israeli universities operate their
admissions policy on the basis of ANY measure of scholastic aptitude,
achievement or potential, Arabs will be under-represented among the
students (and also among the faculty). This has long upset the Caring
Left. And the Caring Left holds hegemony over all Israeli universities.

The Council of Higher Education is the Supreme Soviet of the Israeli
university system. It is the Ivory Cartel. It is a gang of reps
from the universities who divvy up the loot, the budgets handed over to
them without controls by the Knesset and the Finance Ministry.
Universities with more political clout have more power on the Council and
so get more funds. There are NO real objective criteria in the division
of the loot among institutions. Well, ok, the Council says there ARE, but
they are just SECRET!!

As part of its mission, the Council has long acted to PREVENT competition
in higher education, to prevent the development of the countrys' small and
unfunded community colleges, and to prevent overseas institutions from
opening in
Israel. As an example, overseas institutions are prohibited from offering
courses to students in Israel that are not taught in Hebrew (universities
MAY offer such courses), and may not hire Israeli profs to teach in their
programs. We are talking about simply OPERATING programs in Israel, not
getting any government funds!! The Council for years prevented openings of
new programs in professions with high demand, like law and business. Its
main goal is to protect the turfs of the existing universities.

Over the past few months, the current Education Czarina Limor Livnat has
taken on the Ivory Cartel and threatened to restructure it, to restructure
university management, to change the funding system, and to channel more
funds to the non-university colleges. The howls of outrage from the Cartel
were deafening. Heaven knows no fury like a special interest scorned.
Livnat is smart enough to realize that the Universities are bastions of
the Left and so her people stand to lose nothing politically by upsetting
the Tenured Reds, whereas the non-University colleges are crawling with

The Cartel has been paying for lurid ads in the press with taxpayer money,
accusing Livnat of trying to "politicize" higher education. This from the
very same people who have maintained intense politicalization of the
universities for decades.

Nevertheless, the "representativeness" of Arabs among the student
population was too small by leftist standards. The universities introduced
de facto discrimination in the name of "affirmative action" in favor of
Arabs, but still their numbers were too small, except at Haifa University.

Then the Ivory Cartel appointed a committee composed of seven Arab
professors and four Jewish professors to study the "problem". You will not
be surprised to hear that they did not propose that all Arab students at
Israeli universities be required to take a loyalty oath to the State and
to denounce PLO terror, nor to perform 3 years of community service before

The committee made a series of recommendations that effectively amount to
allowing Arabs into universities with no admissions standards at all and
to turn Jewish students into second class students. Arab students would be
granted an extra 15 minutes on all university exams automatically. The
college boards or the "psychometric exams" (like SATS) would be done away
with because
- strangely - Arab students do worse on them on average than Jews. The
admissions criteria for Jews would remain knowledge and aptitude in math
and science and English. For Arabs it would be enough that they can read
Arabic, and they would be given an "entrance exam" on Arab literature or
similar material.

Arab students would also get automatic preferences in things like dorms
and scholarships, meaning that Jewish students would bear an automatic
veterans penalty for having served their country. Arabs would also get
preferences in pre-admissions remedial prep programs.

If you are like me, you expected that the Council would laugh itself silly
at these suggestions by this Intifada Committee, especially in the very
days when Arab students make a point of letting everyone know how openly
they identify with PLO terrorism and atrocities against Jews.

Yesterday the Council on Higher Education voted unanimously to approve the
recommendations of the Academic Intifada Committee. Let me repeat.

>From various sources and older pieces:

Affirmative Action
by Steven Plaut

One of the silliest ideas born in the twentieth century is "reverse
discrimination", often known by its euphemism, "affirmative action". This
being the case, it was clearly just a matter of time until Israel's
political leaders decided to import it into Israel. The Corporations Law
now includes a clause mandating "appropriate representation" of women on
boards of directors of public corporations, and the Supreme Court recently
vetoed the appointments of three men because of their gender. MK Dedi
Zucker has proposed a law mandating reverse discrimination against men
throughout the entire public sector.

Reverse or "affirmative" discrimination in favor of women is supposed to
compensate them for discrimination that allegedly has taken place in the
past. But none of the sponsors or apologists for the proposals can produce
a shred of hard evidence that the low number of women in management
positions has anything at all to do with discrimination. Instead,
pseudo-social science holds the day. Perhaps the greatest fallacy in
social science is the belief that every numerical discrepancy between men
and women or between ethnic/racial groups must be caused by - and proves
the existence of - discrimination.

The inspiration and model for Israel's new campaign for reverse
discrimination are the American programs. In fact, the experience with
reverse discrimination is far richer than that. There have been
"affirmative action" style programs in many countries, including Malaysia,
India, Black Africa, Australia, and elsewhere. The most thorough
investigation of these has been performed by the well-known researcher at
the Hoover Institute at Stanford, Thomas Sowell, who happens to be black.
>From Sowell's work and from study of these programs, a number of
conclusions may be drawn:

Affirmative action has been an abysmal failure everywhere it was
attempted. It does not narrow social gaps. It often harms the very groups
it is attempting to benefit. For example, today many Americans will refuse
to visit a black physician or dentist because of their assumption that he
or she was admitted both to medical school and to the position held
through "special preferences", set-aside quotas, and relaxed standards.
The same is true for many other professionals and for other beneficiaries
of "affirmative action".
The main victims of affirmative action are the most qualified and talented
members of the "beneficiary" groups. Talented women and minorities are
presumed to be mediocre and to be in their positions because of quotas and
promotion of the under-qualified. The entire group is forced by the
reverse discrimination to bear the stigma of "second rate".
Affirmative action increases bigotry, resentment, racism and sexism. It
does so by reinforcing stereotypes of inferiority. It also does so by
penalizing innocent members of the "majority" and innocent men, who never
discriminated against a soul in their lives. In America all whites are
penalized and all blacks receive special favors, including those who never
personally faced any discrimination, because of the actions in the past
perpetrated by some dead whites against dead blacks.
Affirmative action produces ludicrous injustices. Daughters of
millionaires and sons of wealthy minority families receive special
preferences, while the sons of poor families - who may themselves belong
to minorities that happen to be excluded from preference - get penalized.
In America, the Jews suffered from quotas and discrimination until the
1960s because they were a minority, and have suffered from quotas and
discrimination ever since because they have been classified as part of the
There are endless examples of incompetent people being promoted and hired
under affirmative action. A single example will suffice here: when the New
York City police department was pressured to hire more black officers,
among those so hired were quite a few criminals, some of whom were drug
dealers who used their position on the force to eliminate competitor
If a woman happens to be the most qualified person for a position, then
she will be automatically hired by anyone whose self-interest dictates
that the most qualified serve in this position. There is no reason for
quotas or double standards in hiring. Such quotas ensure only one thing:
that the person hired will not be the most qualified. After all, that is
the whole point of reverse discrimination!

The problem is not just women in management. We are now hearing
anti-democratic calls to set aside quotas of Knesset seats for women and
to assign women to party lists by quota. This means that the electorate
will be denied its basic right to choose its representatives freely.

Finally, why stop at women in management? Why not adopt the whole system
of Balkanization now spreading in America and fix quotas and reverse
discrimination in every area of life? Let us have quotas for every group
that feels insufficiently favored, including ethnic groups, homosexuals,
senior citizens, Reform Rabbis, transvestites, vegetarians, the bald, the
obese, stutterers, and dolphins?

Income-based Affirmative Action
Recently the idea of income-based affirmative action has become
fashionable, even among segments of the politically incorrect (such as in
the American Enterprise, July/August 1995). As far as I know, the notion
of income-based affirmative action was first raised in 1980 in an article
that I published in the monthly Midstream ("Some Thoughts on Affirmative
Action", February 1980). So, since I can claim a certain paternity for the
proposal, I would like to explain why I have changed my mind and have come
to the conclusion that income-based affirmative action is foolish and

Briefly, I believe that the arguments against income-based affirmative
action are:

Like ordinary familiar racial/gender affirmative action, income-based
affirmative action is based on the lowering of standards for favored or
preferred groups. It thus damages severely all those institutions into
which members of these favored groups are admitted, including businesses
and schools.
Preferences under income-based affirmative action are as frivolously and
capriciously defined as under regular, bad, old affirmative action. People
are assigned preferences based on current or recent income, which can be
low for numerous reasons. Every graduating student from every Ivy League
university can show that he/she has had low income in recent years, while
studying. Reported income can be low for many other reasons. Any American
who has been living overseas, who has been studying or training, who has
been loafing and enjoying leisure, who just did not report actual income,
who was so rich he/she did not have to work, etc. can enjoy preferences
under income-based affirmative action, even if he/she has wealth in the
millions. Family wealth might make a less arbitrary basis for preferences,
but it is impossible to measure; there is no systematic collection of data
on it, and it is easy to hide.
It taxes the ability of the governmental bureaucracies just to distribute
the mail; income-based affirmative action means enormous bureaucracies
will continue to operate, and acceptance of applicants to jobs and schools
will still be dictated and enforced by incompetent bureaucrats. Costs of
maintaining such bureaucracies will remain enormous.
Like bad-old ordinary affirmative action, beneficiaries of preferences
under income-based affirmative action will carry with them the eternal
badge and stigma of "third class", and negative stereotypes will be
There is a difference between discriminatory pricing of, say, tuition in
order to charge the high-income more and differential standards of
acceptance into a program of study. The former might make sense, the
latter surely does not. At least not if we want top-quality doctors,
engineers, scientists, business professionals, etc.
There would obviously be opportunities for abuse and for reinstating
bad-old racial/gender preferences under the disguise of income-based
affirmative action.


The most important
slave owners and slave abusers in the AMericas were of course not the
ANglo-Saxons but the Spanish. They owned more slaves, and - while
such things are hard to compare - there is no reason to think their
treatment of slaves was BETTER than that by North American
Anglo-Saxons. Nevertheless, this has never prevented the PC cultists
from demanding that affirmative action programs for HISPANICS be
adopted under the rationale of compensating the victims of slavery.
Got that? The Hispanics are the descendents of slave owners yet they
get affirmative action preferences under the absurd AMerican
apartheid system of affirmative action.

Subject: Science vs. Affirmative Action Apartheid

Occasionally one is left breathless at the Churchillian valor and bravery
of a
single soul. In this case it is actually a magazine, SCIENCE, which
agreed to
run a Churchillian advertisement by the National Cancer Institute in

The ad reads: "Selection for this position will be based solely on merit,
no discrimination for non-merit reasons such as race, color, national
gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, or physical or mental
Are the PC storm troopers sleeping?

Meanwhile, Professor Lionel Tiger (prof of anthropology at Rutgers) has a
stupendous anti-affirmative action Op-Ed in the Wall Street Journal (Feb.
in the European edition). Basically he argues that affirmative action is
absurd - if for no other reason (and they are countless) - because there
is no
such thing as separate races. Rather, there is a continuum of race with
clear dividing parts.

He also mentions a Korean-Jewish friend who always checks "Native
American" on
those apartheid forms for jobs and universities where one is asked to
oneself racially. I have always checked "Asian-American" since as is well
known Jews came from the Middle East - the part that is Asia. Of course,
Jews were also slaves unto Pharaoh. I have sacred documentation for it if
you do not believe me. Meaning Jews can say they are of African ancestry,
African-American. And those with ancestors expelled from Spain after the
Reconquista (like me) are clearly Hispanics.

So I suggest you all pick an "in" racial category and define yourselves
as one of those "in" minorities. Let us see the PC crowd argue that noses
foreheads make you ineligible.

Monday, June 23, 2003

Subject: State Nannyism and Oslo Gambling, Poisoning Palestinians,
and other Matters

1. Well, now that the Road Map is working out so well and Abu Mazen is
really doing so devotedly what Israel expects him to do, Israel has put
security aside this week so that the country can debate gambling. All of
the media are suddenly engrossed with the possibility (or, if you prefer,
danger) that Israel will approve opening legal casinos, perhaps in the Negev.
Curiously, the leftist chattering classes and the political
establishment are all suddenly up in indignant arms and oppose the casino
option with shrillest tones. Their arguments consist of a variety of
claims. Gambling is evil and immoral and irresponsible, they argue. It
panders to the worst instincts of people. It entices people to lose their
money and act irresponsibly with their savings. It strengthens and
enriches criminal elements.
And so on. Never mind that the government runs the main form of
legal gambling in the country - the musty "Pais" state lottery and its
related sports lotteries, and the state-run TV is full of advertisements
for these. And then there is the Jericho PLO casino whose partner-owners
include the Labor Party's Yossi Ginossar, accused last year of spying and
money laundering for Arafat until Israel's dual judicial system "cleared" him.

There is a strong undertone in Israeli society of olde-socialist
nanny-statism, where the politicians seek for the state to act as a great
Mary Poppins to protect us all from ourselves. State Nannyism was what was
behind the opposition by the Labor Party to the Beatles appearing in Israel
back in the 60s, BEFORE their Sargeant Pepper druggy phase. Bad influence
on the pioneering youth, you see, who should better sit and read
Engels. It lay behind the state's attempt to dictate to Israelis what time
to go to bed by making TV broadcasting shut down early. It lay behind the
long refusal to allow color TV broadcasting so Israelis would not waste
their savings on color TV's. Naturally, the politicians think you and I
need a nanny, but they themselves don't.

But that is not what is really outrageous about the jihad against
gambling by the Israeli political establishment. What is truly outrageous
is that the very same politicians suddenly tearing their hair out at the
clear and present dangers of gambling are the VERY SAME ONES WHO IMPOSED
notion of "PEACE"!! Olso was marketed to Israelis as a gamble worth
taking. We must take chances for peace, ran the mantra. We will not know
if it works until we try it! Take a chance!

The chances of winning the state lottery or a fortune in Vegas are
far larger than the chances Oslo might have worked or that the Road Map
will produce anything good. The same politicians suddenly all worried-pooh
about how gambling might enrich and strengthen the underworld have never
grasped the fact that the Oslo gamble did nothing beside strengthening and
enriching the Palestinian nazis.

SO I suggest that instead of trying so hard to protect foolish
Israelis from themselves, these pols start protecting Israelis from the
bloody Oslo gambles they forced the country to take, gambles the country
lost big time. WIth 1300 murdered Israelis as a result of that crap shot.

A good way to start would be to ban altogether the current proposed
Road Map Casino!

2. In recent months the media have repeatedly run "news stories" amounting
to little more than sensational anti-Semitic libels, little better than the
filth spread in the Middle Ages. Stories of Jews poisoning and torturing
and carrying our medieval atrocities. Some of these were spread in the
Arab press, others spread by Far Left Israeli Professors for a Second
Among these was a story about Israeli soldiers carving a Red Star of
David in the skin on the arm of an Arab boy. It turned out to be a red
star of David on a bandaid placed on the arm of the boy by Israel's Red
Magen David (like the Red Cross). Then there was that story a few years
back of Israel shooting poison gas into an Arab girls school. Turned out
the "poison gas" was pollen from flowers in season. The Jenin operation
gave birth to oodles of such stories. Like Israel blowing up a hospital
wing that it turns out had never existed and had never been built. And so on.
It is against such a background that we read the latest anti-Semitic
blood libel, this time in today's Haaretz. I reprint the headline for you:
"Soldier charged with making Palestinian woman drink poison By Gideon Alon
and Amos Harel
"A woman soldier was yesterday charged with forcing
a Palestinian woman at gunpoint to drink a highly
toxic liquid that made her blind and that caused
external and internal burns that needed hospital
treatment. "

Now before telling you the REAL story, let us note the ease with which
Haaretz, Israel's main Hebrew Palestinian newspaper, prints out such
stories. This was not its first venture into Medieval blood libeling.

So what REALLY happened? Well, it turns out Israeli soldiers are on alert
for Arabs trying to smuggle bottles of poison into Israeli areas to try to
mass-murder Jews for peace. There have already been attempts at mass
poisoning of Jews by Palestinians in Jerusalem and elsewhere. A month or
so ago, a woman soldier was at a checkpoint when a Palestinian woman
carrying a suspicious-looking bottle tried to pass through. The
soldierette asked what the bottle contains. The woman says water. Good,
says the soldierette, prove that to me by taking a swig and then you can go

Now before continuing, let me put this saga into its proper
context. Last summer I was checking in with the family at the Tokyo
airport when the Tokyo security people decided to give the Plaut family an
extra-thorough inspection, what with their suspicious Middle East faces and
a Harry Potter book in Hebrew and all. The family accepted the extra
attention with equanimity, understanding and even happiness, encouraging
the Japanese to inspect as thoroughly as possible. The guards opened one
bag and found a bottle of clear liquid. What is this they asked in broken
English? Allergy medicine for junior, we replied, and not flied lice (ok,
no, I did not really say the last part). Prove it oh distinguished
tourist-san, says the guard. With pleasure, replies the Misses and She Who
Must Be Obeyed in the Plaut Household. She dips her pinky in the liquid
and gives youngest son a lick of it to prove it is not nitroglycerin or any
other bad stuff. Multi-lingual smiles and handshakes later, we boarded
our plane to Honolulu, none the worse for the inspection and junior's
allergy even slightly improved.

Now I mention all this because the Israeli soldierette and heroine
of the Haaretz scoop did exactly the same thing as the Tokyo security
guards, with far more justification, and followed a very similar
routine. Of course, as it turned out, the Palestinian madame WAS carrying
a dangerous poisonous substance. When soldierette demanded that the woman
prove the substance was harmless water by taking a chug-a-lug, she was
following reasonable procedures. The Palestinian woman chugged and lugged
and collapsed and was hospitalized at Israeli taxpayer expense, while the
soldierette was tossed in the military klink rather than awarded a medal.

Now if you read the small print in the Haaretz article at
then you might figure out what the actual story here is. But if you only
read the headline, you will have a great deal of trouble distinguishing
Haaretz from Der Sturmer....

3. Our Apology
By Stephen Berger | June 23, 2003

Following the latest atrocity in Jerusalem, Secretary of State Powell urged
the Palestinians to issue some form of denunciation.
Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas complained that only the Palestinian side is
ever required to denounce terror.
Predictably, the Palestinian denunciation later mumbles that they "deplore
the murder of civilians on both sides."
Perhaps the Palestinians have a point, and so to set the record straight, I
do hereby denounce the following in the name of the Jewish people:
1. All Jewish suicide bombers who have ever acted against Arabs.
2. All Arab buses blown up by Jews.
3. All Arab pizza parlors, malls, discotheques and restaurants destroyed by
Jewish terrorists.
4. All airplanes hijacked by Jews since 1903.
5. All Ramadan feasts targeted by Jewish bombs.
6. All Arabs lynched in Israeli cities; all Arab Olympic athletes murdered
by Jews; all Arab embassies bombed by Jews.
7. All mosques, cemeteries and religious schools fire bombed or desecrated
by Jews in North Africa, France, Belgium, Germany, England or any other
8. The destruction of American military, governmental and civilian
institutions in Kenya, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Yemen - >> along
with the murder of U.S.Marines and diplomatic personnel.
9. All Jewish school books which claim that Arabs poison wells, use
Christian blood to bake pita, control world finance, and murdered Jesus; or
that Arab elders meet secretly to plot a world takeover.
10. And I am particularly ashamed at the way my fellow Jews attacked the
World Trade Center, Pentagon and civilian aircraft on September 11th and
danced in the streets to celebrate the act.
Prof. Stephen Berger works at the Tel Aviv Medical Center.

4. Brits as bad as the

Thursday, June 19, 2003

Subject: Israeli Professors for a Rwanda Solution to the "Problem" of
Israel's Existence

It has been quite a while since we commented on the assorted Israeli
professors and their fellow travelers promoting the "One-State
Solution". Orwell said that some ideas are so stupid that you would can
only learn about them in universities. These are people who seek an end
to Israel's existence and its replacement by a sort of Levantine Rwanda, a
"binational state" in which the Arabs are the majority and the Jews enjoy
dhimmi minority status. Like Rwanda. The Post-Zionists refer to it as a
"democratic secular state". So does the PLO and its front groups (see, the same PLO
that seeks a state based on the Islamist fascist states. Some
democracy. Some secularism. As you know, the Moslem world has a
wonderful history of sharing power with its non-Moslem minorities (remember
what happened in Lebanon? Bosnia?).

The fashionable name for this is the "One-State Solution", but should
actually be called the No-State Solution (no Jewish state in any case). It
is advocated by Israel Shamir, probably the most openly anti-Semitic
Israeli commentator on the planet
If you do a web search, you will discover scores of "One-State" solution
web sites.

Among the promoters of this brilliant idea is one Prof. Yaron
Ezrahi, just another Far Leftist "Post Zionist" from the Hebrew
University's political science department. He is not alone - a growing
number of journalists and professors in Israel endorse the "One-State
Solution". (Haaretz' Meron Benveniste and others have endorsed the idea.)

What is unusual is that Ezrahi is also a senior partner at the "Israel
Institute of Democracy" which pretends to be a non-partisan Think
Tank. Ezrahi has written a series of books and articles bashing Israel and
even endorsing "post-modernism", another word for academic gibberish. He
was among those endorsing the campaign of Leftist McCarthyism against the
free speech of non-leftists after the Rabin assassination.

In fact, for years we have been warning everyone on these postings
that the IID is a Leftist conscripted institution whose purpose is to serve
Israel's Left and especially the Labor Party. But until now the IID was
not explicitly hosting people openly working for Israel's destruction:

A civil war that both sides will lose
an interview with Yaron Ezrahi
bitterlemons: How do we know when the two state solution is no longer viable?
Ezrahi: The end of the two state solution will be indicated by a situation
whereby the settlements, in view of the political and demographic force
they represent, obstruct or undermine the possibility of drawing a border
between the state of Israel and the designated state of Palestine. In other
words, a border becomes politically non-feasible for the Israeli leadership
and possibly for the Palestinian leadership as well.
We are talking here about a process. It is enough for the opposition to a
two state solution on both sides to maintain a level of violence that
prevents political agreement, to accelerate the process leading to a one
state "solution".
When the political costs of drawing a border exceed the gains, then a
border can only be imposed from outside.
bitterlemons: Are you suggesting that the international community would
intervene to impose a border in order to maintain a two state solution?
Ezrahi: The question is not whether they will intervene, but whether their
intervention will be vigorous enough to make a difference and prevent the
disintegration of the two state solution. For example, both the settlers
and the Palestinian extremists know the president of the United States has
to worry about elections every two years, economic problems and other
diversions. Their strategy is to create violence in order to delay
significant political and diplomatic processes, particularly near moments
of consummation, to prevent a resolution.
bitterlemons: How close are we to a point of no return?
Ezrahi: Very. If Palestinian patriots and the Palestinian leadership arrive
at the conclusion that a one state solution is preferable because they will
end up with greater Palestine with a Jewish minority rather than greater
Israel with a Palestinian minority as the settlers want, then they will
actually seek this result.
bitterlemons: What will be the effect on the two societies?
Ezrahi: The result will be to convince larger numbers of Israelis that the
only way to survive as a state is through massive violence against the
Palestinian population. In other words, if the course of events leading to
a one state solution is not prevented, we are likely to move in the
direction of civil war where each side seeks to exterminate and push out
the other. This will prevent either community from realizing its capacity
for a polity.
So one ongoing incentive for a two state solution should be the ability of
the Palestinian leadership to project a war that both sides will lose and
that does not result in a viable one state solution, and the ability of the
Israeli leadership to project the dangers of such a war; the ability of
leadership on both sides to show the futility of abandoning the two state
solution. This capacity to understand that we can destroy each other is
more important than, say, the leadership of President Bush.
Every leader in this region has an automatic mandate from his/her
constituency to take measures in defense of the community. No leader can
claim to have a mandate to take measures that cause self-destruction. Do
our leaders know the line that distinguishes between the two conditions?
I'm afraid they need urgent help to redraw this line.
bitterlemons: In this context, how do you assess Israeli Prime Minister
Ariel Sharon's commitment to a two state solution?
Ezrahi: Sharon has resolved that if there is an unambiguous historic
opportunity to end the conflict, he will do his share. But for this
historic opportunity to be compelling to him, it has to be extremely
dangerous for Israel not to act in this way.
Sharon's definition of historic opportunity is very maximalist, due to a
lack of trust. The question is whether the Palestinians, the Arabs and the
US can seduce Sharon into reducing his expectations. For example, right now
Syria is out of the game. But if it suddenly offers to moderate its
position rather than support the extremists, this will constitute an
incentive for the Sharon government and affect its ability to make painful
compromises domestically.
bitterlemons: How will the demise of a two state solution affect the Jewish
Diaspora worldwide?
Ezrahi: The end of the Zionist dream can take several forms, including the
loss of a Jewish majority, loss of democracy, and a radical militarization
of Israeli society. It will create a split within the Jewish people
worldwide along fault lines that we can already see. On the one hand a very
small minority, 15 to 25 percent, of people who know only ethnic solidarity
and have no dreams other than survival and revenge. This is the group that
supports the settlers ideologically. And on the other the majority, who
will disengage.
Disengagement would be a tremendous blow to the idea of Jewish
collectivity; if the only expression of that idea is a form of apartheid
state, then Jewish youth worldwide will run away from Jewish identity. That
would be an ironic and tragic outcome of the Zionist movement. Instead of
becoming a spiritual center for the entire Jewish people, Israel would
become the epicenter for the disintegration of the foundations of Jewish
collectivity and solidarity in our time. -Published 16/6/2003┬ę
Yaron Ezrahi is a professor of political science at the Hebrew University
in Jerusalem and a senior fellow at the Israel Democracy Institute.