Helen Thomas, James Taranto, The WSJ Edit Page, And Me
In case you have
already forgotten, a few days ago the distinguished
career of Helen Thomas, the 89-year-old doyen of the
White House Press Corps, was ended by the Israel Lobby,
which made an issue about her opinion that immigrant
Jews should leave Palestine and go back to their home
The White House
Correspondents` Association fell in line with the
demands of the Israel Lobby. And the cowardly president
of the organization added the association`s
disapprobation to that of the
Having removed Helen
Thomas from the journalism scene, the Israel Lobby is
now working with its agents on the
Journal editorial page to eliminate the
Helen Thomas Award for Lifetime Achievement
Society of Professional Journalists.
A nonentity in the world of journalism,
James Taranto, apparently is associated with the
Wall Street Journal editorial page, although Wikipedia
that he was incapable of graduating from journalism
school at California State University, Northridge. On a
Journal web site, Taranto writes:
calling Thomas `American journalism`s crazy old aunt in
the attic` for years”, and he asks who would now
accept the Helen Thomas award after Ms. Thomas revealed
she really was crazy by criticizing Israel. (`A
Living Icon of Journalism`
, June 8 2010)
I would, for one.
Of course the Society of Professional Journalists would
never give the award, assuming the distinguished award
survives the assault of the Israel Lobby`s assassins, to
a critic of Israel.
American journalists are cowards. With the concentrated
ownership of the corporate media today, no
independently-minded journalist can have a career in
print or TV media. You defend the Washington/Tel Aviv
line, or you are out of work.
The absence of
independently-minded journalists on the
Journal editorial page is an extraordinary change
from my days as Associate Editor of that page. The
editorial page editor,
Robert Bartley was ambitious and forced himself to tolerate
talented colleagues. Mere opinion was not our task.
Often we scooped the reporters on the news side of the
paper. Our editorials reported new developments and
provided factual analysis.
Jude Wanniski`s replacement. Jude, Associate Editor of the
Wall Street Journal, was fired, allegedly because the journal`s
brass caught him handing out election campaign
literature on a train platform, but if you believe
American journalism was ever that pure, I have a bridge
in Brooklyn for sale.
Jude was fired,
because the neoconservatives got rid of him by telling
Bartley that Wanniski was overshadowing him. That was
too much for Bob`s ego. Jude, of course, being a
real journalist, was
objective toward the Palestinians
and thus had earned the enmity of the Israel Lobby.
Once Bob was rapidly
declining with prostate cancer, neoconservatives
engineered the takeover of the editorial page. Today the
Street Journal editorial page is a leading apologist
for Israeli/American war crimes and police states.
To return to the
nonentity, James Taranto, who wants to throw Helen
Thomas down the memory hole: Helen Thomas` opinion
that Israelis should stop stealing the villages, homes,
and lands of Palestinians, while confining Palestinians
to the equivalent of the Warsaw Ghetto, is equated by
Taranto to the advocacy of
cleansing” by Helen.
Of course, it is the
Israelis who are doing the ethnic cleansing. Many Jews
have documented Israel`s ethnic cleansing of
Palestinians, such as
Uri Avnery, a former member of
the Israeli terrorist organization, Irgun, Ilan Pappe,
Israel`s most distinguished historian and author of The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine,
and the Israeli peace group,
who have been my house guests. The Israeli newspaper,
Haaratz, is far more critical of Israeli policy than Helen Thomas,
and so is MIT professor Noam Chomsky, the distinguished
British journalist and film maker John Pilger, and the
distinguished scholar, Norman Finkelstein, the son of
But Taranto prefers
an 89-year old adversary.
Israel is an
unnatural state. It was created by terror that was
accommodated by craven British and US
Israel exists for one reason only: the US government
provides the money, weapons, and diplomatic protection.
Any other government that murdered thousands of
civilians in other countries, as Israel does routinely
in Lebanon, Gaza, and the West Bank, would have its
entire government and military on trial before the War
Crimes Tribunal at the Hague. Israelis have no worst
enemy than their own government.
Every time the rest
of the world tries to hold the Israeli government
accountable for its crimes, the US vetoes the UN
resolution. America has become the enabler of the
Zionist-hijacked Israeli government.
And the Israeli
government knows it. Israeli government leaders have
publicly bragged for decades about their control over
the US government. US Admiral
Moorer, Chief of Naval Operations and Chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff after whom the F-14 Tomcat jet
fighter was named, declared publicly:
President can stand up to Israel”. Apparently
no American journalist can either.
I am a critic of
Israel`s heartless policy toward the Palestinians, but I
do not want Israel destroyed. As I
wrote in 2002—a column that as Taranto notes is
archived only at VDARE.COM—I want it moved or reformed.
Bring the small number of Israelis to America before
there is a nuclear war over the fact that they are where
they should not be. [VDARE.COM
note: for a different suggestion, see
try to claim a land and dispossess its people on the
basis of a spurious two thousand year year old deed is
an audacious act of conquest and dispossession.
My proposal to
relocate Israelis in the US is rhetorical. But why not
insist that the Israelis, who are heavily dependent on
US largess, reform? Why should Americans support an
apartheid racist state that denies citizenship to the
rightful inhabitants? What kind of morality, if
any, does the Wall Street Journal editorial page represent when it defends
Israelis who force Palestinians into
ever-shrinking ghettos, deprived of water,
food, medical care and schools? Why must Palestinians
live in dread of Israeli bulldozers arriving to flatten
their homes in order to create space for Zionist
Allegedly, the US is
a superpower, but in fact it is a
puppet state of the Israeli government. Witness, for example
(the examples are numerous), the fate of the Goldstone
Report on Israeli war crimes committed in Israel`s
assault on Gaza during December 2008-January 2009.
Goldstone is a Zionist Jew and a distinguished judge. He
was given the task by the United Nations to investigate
the Israeli attack on Gaza. Being an honest person, he
provided evidence of Israeli war crimes.
What was the result?
The bought-and-paid-for US Congress voted, on the
instructions of their master, the Israel Lobby, to
deep-six the Goldstone Report by a vote of 344 to 36.
Amazing, isn`t it,
there were only 36 US Representatives who were not owned
by the Israel Lobby.
Of course, James
Taranto serves the Israel Lobby. The
Journal editorial page, not even a shadow of its
former self, when it speaks, speaks for Israel and for
the Bush/Cheney militarist police state.
Wall Street Journal editorial page has fallen into the low ranks of
neocon propaganda. The fact that management tolerates
the continuation of totally non-objective journalism
shows why print newspapers are failing everywhere.
The hubris of
Taranto, a mere propagandist who will never come close
to the league in which Helen Thomas resides, causes him
to think that he is fit to pass judgment on a real
the hubris of the neoconservatives. Not a single one of
them has the smallest accomplishment. Yet, blinded with
arrogance, they remain in ignorant bliss of their status
Paul Craig Roberts
was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury during
President Reagan`s first term. He was Associate
Editor of the Wall Street Journal. He has
held numerous academic appointments, including the
William E. Simon Chair, Center for Strategic and
International Studies, Georgetown University, and Senior
Research Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford
University. He was awarded the Legion of Honor by French
President Francois Mitterrand. He is the author of
Supply-Side Revolution : An Insider`s Account of
Policymaking in Washington;
and the Soviet Economy
Meltdown: Inside the Soviet Economy,
and is the co-author with Lawrence M. Stratton of
The Tyranny of Good Intentions : How Prosecutors and
Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name
of Justice. Click
for Peter Brimelow`s
interview with Roberts about the recent epidemic of