Author Archive: David Bernstein

THIS NAKBA DAY MESSAGE IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY TRUTH: Also worth noting. Before the Palestinian cause became a thing, in the Arab world the “Nakba” or catastrophe wasn’t the displacement of Arabs from Palestine, but the failure of five Arab armies plus Palestinian Arab militias to wipe out the nascent state of Israel and kill or expel its Jewish residents.

WHAT COULD GO WRONG?: The Times of Israel has an important piece about how the Biden administration wants to end the war in Gaza with Hamas still in place and intact. The article is filled with delusionary statements, on and off the record, by administration officials, but if you can imagine the dumbest think Biden State Department spokesman Matthew Miller might have said about Gaza, it still won’t be as dumb as what he actually said, apparently reflected administration policy:

Notably, the US has signaled its tepid support for China’s recent efforts to strike a long-elusive deal between Hamas and Fatah. “If China wanted to play a productive role in bringing this conflict to an end, that is something that we would welcome,” Miller said last week.

It was bad enough that the Obama administration let Russia have free reign in Syria. But *inviting* China to gain influence in Gaza? Are they completely insane?

My best guess here is that they are expecting wall-to-wall pro-Hamas craziness from now until November from the leftist base, and are so desperate to get the conflict to end and focus on the messaging the Biden campaign wants, that they are willing to invite America’s greatest geo-political rival to take up residence right on Israel and Egypt’s doorstep. Which, ironically, is exactly the sort of thing they accuse Trump of doing.

THE MOSTLY PEACEFUL PRO-HAMAS CAMPUS DEMONSTRATIONS: The Guardian: “An independent non-profit that tracks political violence and political protests around the world found that 97% of campus demonstrations over the war in Gaza that have taken place in the US since mid-April have been peaceful.

But wait: “[The study] defines peaceful protests as ones without serious physical violence or property damage, Doyle said. Its bar for categorising a demonstration as violent includes “physical violence that rises above pushing or shoving” or property destruction that involves ‘breaking a window or worse,’ he said.”

Get it? You can push, shove, form human chains to keep “Zionists” from moving about, threaten, intimidate, chant “death to the Jews,” vandalize, trespass, even shoot at someone so long as you miss, and more, and the authors of the study would still say your protest has been “peaceful.”

AN EXAMPLE OF WHY PEOPLE WHO GET THEIR NEWS FROM NPR ARE ILL-INFORMED: Check out the contrast in coverage. Does anyone believe that NPR’s omission of the students’ support for terrorism and the violent destruction of Israel was a mere oversight?

(1) NPR:

(2) Student journalist via the Free Press:

UPENDING THE VEEP STAKES: I’m a law professor and admittedly don’t have my finger of the pulse of the American public. Nevertheless, I can’t imagine that “She didn’t hesitate to kill her own pet dog when it was disobedient so think of what she will do to the deep state” is a politically winning slogan.

COSPLAYING JUDAISM ON BEHALF OF HAMAS: It’s hard to keep track of all the grossly offensive actions of pro-Hamas campus demonstrators, but here’s one that hasn’t received much attention.

In an effort to ward off accusation that their encampments, run by pro-Hamas groups like Students for Justice in Palestine, are antisemitic, protestors are pretending to be practicing Jews. Here, for example is a printed Passover “Seder plate” at a Passover dinner at USC reportedly attended by fifty students. Not a single one of the attendees seems to have noticed that all the Hebrew words are backwards, something that would be obvious to anyone who had a bar or bat mitzvah or otherwise learned even the most basic Hebrew.

And here’s a link to a tweet with a video of a “Shabbat service” at Columbia. As the video pans out, you can see that almost none of the students know the song, which is an extremely common Sabbath hymn that any Jew who ever attends real Shabbat services would be familiar with.

Given that these students and hangers-on are at the very least willing to join protests organized by Hamasniks, it’s hardly surprising that they have no respect for other people’s religious practices and are happy to cosplay practicing religion to serve political ends. But it’s still disgusting.

“I, TOO, HATE WHITE PEOPLE”: ‘Zionists Don’t Deserve To Live’: Meet The Leader Of Columbia University’s Anti-Israel Encampment.

The I, too, hate white people quote is from before he started at Columbia. I would like to think that Columbia did not know about this when he was admitted, but I don’t think it would have made a difference–sentiments like his would just be seen as “brave” and “transgressive” rather than hateful and a potential sign of mental instability.

HEADS SHOULD, BUT LIKELY WON’T ROLL: Northwestern University Dean of Students Attends Protest Targeting Campus Jewish Community Center. Let’s just pause to take this in for a moment. Northwestern University is already under federal investigation for violating Jewish students’ civil rights. And so the Dean of Students, Mona Dugo… decides to attend a rally protesting, and let’s be honest, trying to intimidate, the campus Hillel (Jewish student group). She later claimed that she wanted to make sure the protestors right to protest was protected, as if roving mobs of Jewish students have been the problem on campus. Who is she kidding? If she isn’t relieved of her administrative responsibilities, and soon, Northwestern will richly deserve the hostile environment lawsuit it loses.

“ANTI-WAR” ACTIVISTS FOR WAR: Jewish Insider: In Chicago on Saturday, 300 anti-war activists were meeting to discuss plans to disrupt the Democratic National Convention in August when an activist took to the stage to announce that Iran had attacked Israel. The crowd burst into cheers at the news, The Free Press reported. The event was co-hosted by several groups, including the Chicago chapter of SJP.

Not “antiwar,” just on the other side.

THEY ARE NOT FOR HUMAN RIGHTS, THEY ARE JUST ON THE OTHER SIDE:

LEADERSHIP MAKES ALL THE DIFFERENCE, COMPARE AND CONTRAST:

BIDEN ADMINISTRATION TRIES TO FURTHER BALKANIZE AMERICANS: OMB has decided to make America’s arbitrary racial classifications even more arbitrary by turning the multi-racial Hispanic ethnic classification into a racial one, and to add a new and entirely incoherent Middle East and North Africa racial classification (which will include Israeli and Mizrahi Jews, Turks, Persians, Arabs, Chaldeans, Kurds, Berbers and more; in fact, given the choice between white and MENA, as a Jew with close ancestral and familial ties to Israel, and no ties to Europe for over a hundred years, I’m going with white AND MENA, as will many Ashkenazi Jews. It’s totally, as I noted, incoherent).

Someone needs to sue to stop these changes. The first is meant to retard Hispanic assimilation by making them into a permanent racial class. The second is meant to settle the question as to whether Arab and Iranian Americans, historically considered white in the US, are really, as leftist activist groups want, “people of color” who can glom on to whatever benefits that status has.

If a lawsuit doesn’t work, a new Trump administration, which already rejected such proposals last time, should reverse them. And the goal should be to eventually largely eliminate government collection of data by race, as it’s often stupid and counter-productive, as, for example, with rules requiring medical researchers to use American racial classifications in their research that have no scientific basis.

Here’s the comment I submitted to OMB opposing turning Hispanic into a racial classification. And here’s the comment I submitted re the MENA classification.

HATRED OF ISRAEL MAKES PEOPLE LOSE THEIR RATIONAL FACULTIES: I’ve never thought that Nicholas Kristof is any sort of genius, but this is really embarrassing. Doing some quick math, that would be a line of about 415 miles of 18 wheelers, assuming no space between them. In what world did Kristof think this was possible?

UPDATE: Yes, the trucks on average might be smaller than 18 wheelers. But 30K of them is still impossible. Also, I should also note that Israel does not control Gaza’s border with Egypt, Egypt does. All the trucks lined up at the border have already been security-vetted by Israel. To the extent there is a much smaller backlog than 30K, the holdup is because of Egyptian/UN. slothfulness, not Israel.

GAME, SET, AND MATCH:

MORE MEDIA MALPRACTICE: The media has been repeating the pro-Hamas caucus’s claim that it achieved a great victor by getting 13.2% of Michigan Democrats to vote “Uncommitted.” Media coverage has been suggesting that all of these voters voted Uncommitted based on Biden’s refusal to force Israel to stop fighting Hamas. Almost no one bothered to look up what happened in Michigan the last time a Democratic president was running for re-election, Barack Obama in 2012. That year, Uncommitted received 10.7% of the vote, even though Obama was generally much more popular and inspirational to Democrats (and he also wasn’t pushing 80). So, likely only a small fraction of the 13.2% Uncommitted this year were specifically voting about Israel/Gaza. But the pro-Hamas folks ran a nice pr campaign and the media, wittingly or otherwise, went along with it.

DIVERSITY IS OUR STRENGTH: Imagine being proud that your society’s terrorists come from all walks of life. It won’t surprise to learn that the tweet author is a Sociology professor at CUNY.

UPDATE (FROM GLENN): Starting a war and then losing it doesn’t make you a victim. It puts you in the same boat as Nazis. Whom the Palestinians resemble, except for competence.

NO ONE WILL EVER BE FREE UNTIL PALESTINIAN TERRORISTS CAN HIJACK PLANES WITH IMPUNITY: Here is someone who’s visa should be in the process of being revoked as we speak.

PRETTY MUCH SUMS UP MUCH THE LACK OF ACCOUNTABILITY THAT PLAGUES OUR GOVERNMENT: Headline: Pentagon finds no one to blame for keeping Secretary Austin’s hospital stays secret.

LAUGHABLY BAD/MOTIVATED ‘JOURNALISM’: Several Arab American and an Iranian American groups have been lobbying for decades to get the US government to recognize a “Middle Eastern and North African” racial classification; currently, the US government classified Americans of MENA origin as “white.” The Biden administration has endorsed the change, and is currently reviewing comments on it (my comment opposing the change can be found here).

The Times apparently decided to join the campaign by conducting a survey of MENA Americans and how they identify. A methodologically sound survey would have found a randomly selected group of Americans with MENA descent, and surveyed them. Instead, the Times solicited responses on the Internet, and then contacted “community groups” (which likely did not include Israeli American or Mizrahi Jewish groups, both of which would be included in the new MENA classification) to find additional respondents. Some of these community groups are the same folks lobbying for a MENA classification, further distorting the results.

What would a methodologically sound survey have found? I don’t know. But here’s one data point from my book Classified: “In 2010, a coalition of Arab American groups sponsored an ad campaign urging their constituents to write in Arab on the census form, rather than checking the White box. The goal was to pressure the Census Bureau to add a MENA category on the next census. The tag line for the campaign was, “Check it Right! You Ain’t White.” Well over eighty percent of Arab Americans nevertheless checked the White box.”

WHAT WOULD WE DO WITHOUT RIGHTS GROUPS: Israeli forces rescued two hostages held in a Rafah apartment building. During the rescue, they came under heavy fire from neighboring apartment buildings housing many additional terrorists. Israel called in airstrikes against said buildings. So, inevitably: “Rights groups condemned the airstrikes on Rafah.”

And by the way, this is why you should care about this sort of thing, even if you are wholly uninterested in Israel or the Middle East. These purported “rights groups” want to impose rules on Israel that would make it impossible for Israel to successfully fight terrorism. And then once these rules get imposed on Israel, that will be precedent to impose them on the US, NATO, etc., so that no one in the West will be able to successfully fight terrorism. A while back, I thought about writing a book on this, with a title something like “Canary in Coal Mine: The NGO’s War Against Israel.” Maybe I should consider it again.

FIGHT BACK TWICE AS HARD: The pro-Hamas riots in major cities, such as the vandalism of businesses, and the blockage of roads, are illegal and can be predicate acts for civil lawsuits under RICO and other federal laws. I have two lawyer friends (both of whom I met during my undergrad days at Brandeis!) who are eager to bring such lawsuits, but they need victims to step forward and contact them.

NOW THEY TELL US: The New York Times and other major media outlets had sixteen years to report on the restrictions they faced in reporting in Hamas-controlled Gaza. Crickets. Today, though, we learn from the Times:

It doesn’t say anything good about the media’s integrity that we didn’t hear about this until now, when Hamas has almost totally lost control of Gaza.

WHY DON’T PEOPLE WHO EXPRESS GRAVE CONCERN ABOUT PALESTINIAN CASUALTIES CALL ON HAMAS TO RELEASE ITS HOSTAGES AND SURRENDER?: Because they don’t really care about Palestinian well-being. The allegedly “pro-Palestine” movement’s main objective is to destroy the State of Israel, for various reasons–antisemitism, Islamism, pan-Arabism, hatred of the West. The welfare of actual Palestinians is at best a secondary concern. This, among others things, is why you see virtually no voices who claim to be concerned with Palestinian well-being calling on Hamas to surrender. Hamas’s surrender would surely be good for the Palestinians. It would end the war and its attendant destruction, and it would mean that some new group would govern Gaza, and that new government could hardly be worse than the corrupt, Islamist, war-mongering dictatorship of Hamas. But, and here’s the key, Hamas’s surrender would also benefit Israel. And the “movement” is happy to sacrifice both immediate and long-term Palestinian well-being to harm Israel.