Free Markets, Free People

Helen Thomas Part II

I shut off the comments to the earlier Helen Thomas post, because the comments pretty much ran off the rails. I mean, talk about not being able to see the forest for the trees..

Look, whatever you may think about the legitimacy of Israel, the arguments of the reconquistas, that’s all irrelevant. It doesn’t have anything at all to do with the issue I was addressing. All of that stuff is a non-sequitur.

Helen Thomas didn’t say the Jews should be stuffed into ovens. Now, maybe she’s a raging anti-semite who believes that’s what should happen. I dunno. I don’t have access to her inner life. All I know is that isn’t what she said.

What she said was that the state of Israel was occupying Arab land, and that the Israelis should return to their countries of origin, i.e. “Germany, Poland…America, and everywhere else.” That’s certainly a minority opinion in the US, but it’s less of one in Europe, and it’s the absolute majority opinion in the Arab world.

So the only relevant question is whether stating that opinion is so outrageous that she should lose her livelihood for stating it. If so, then the implied conclusion is that questioning the legitimacy of the Israeli state is a disqualification from participating in public discourse (and is no doubt prima facie evidence of anti-Semitism to some).

So, lets confine ourselves to what she actually said, and discuss whether denying the legitimacy of Israel is such a horrific opinion that those who express it have to be driven out of public life like some kind of poison troll.

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49 Responses to Helen Thomas Part II

  • So the only relevant question is whether stating that opinion is so outrageous that she should lose her livelihood for stating it.

    It is not any of your…or our…business.  People whose business it was made that decision, and I think they were right…but so what?

    If so, then the implied conclusion is that questioning the legitimacy of the Israeli state is a disqualification from participating in public discourse (and is no doubt prima facie evidence of anti-Semitism to some).

    This is a rather silly statement, don’t you think?  Nobody has “disqualified” Thomas from the public discourse.  Thomas simply made herself unemployed by her former employer, and unrepresented by her former speaker’s bureau.  You seem inclined to beat a dead horse here.  Why?

    • I agree it was a silly statement to day Thomas was disqualified by her comment.  Face it, Thomas was undone by a continuing series of unforced errors.  This was just the final one and easily pounced on.  She is, after all, 90 and has not written anything interesting in recent memory.  Quick, name one Helen Thomas column withuot looking.  Bet you couldn’t.  All Helen Thomas has is an excess of abrasiveness.   That is hardly a quality in short supply.

    • well said…… the desire to re-frame the questions to obtain the desired answers is rampant in political blogs. oversimplifying choices can only lead to oversimplictic answers…… but hey if it serves the desired goals.

  • In short, yes.  Denying the legitimacy of Israel *is* such a horrific opinion that those who express it have to be driven out of public life like some kind of poison troll.
    Your piece had the aroma we’re all too familiar with.  Left or Right, this is how the invitation to a “reasonable conversation” always begins.

  • With that pretext, one could deny the legitimacy of about every country. The reason Israel is different, it seems to me, is that many Arabs don’t just want the land but want to see the Jews exterminated.  

  • Lots of people figure that hating Jews like that is a lot like hating black people. I doubt that very many of your readers would approve of a <em>law</em> forcing Thomas out of her job &mdash; any more than we approve of laws against Holocaust denial (at least, I <em>hope</em> your readers mostly oppose those laws).
     
    But what we’ve got here is just that in any culture, there are going to be some opinions that get you chased out of polite society like a poison troll. Racism is one, in ours. Now, I’m surely biased, but if I’ve got to accept being stuck with <em>some</em> arbitrary set of “poison-troll ideas” in our public discourse, the ones we’ve got in the modern USA are far from the worst I could think of.
     
    Yeah, I’m not thrilled in principle to see people driven into the outer darkness like Gollum, just because they say something unfashionable. Obviously the same could happen to me (and on a much milder level, has). But what are you going to do about it? Start running around describing Holocaust deniers as “apolitical liberals”?
     
    And I don’t give a rat’s ass what they think in Europe, any more than Europeans give a rat’s ass about intellectual fashions in Maine.
     
     

  • Whether Helen Thomas should have been let go by her employers only relevant to Thomas and Hearst.
    Whether, after expressing that opinion, she should have been entitled to sit in the White House press room is a public matter. Much to my dismay the White House was saved from making that choice by her abrupt retirement. No popcorn today.

    • I am sure Helen has a great career ahead of her writing for National Vanguard or Stormfront.org.

      • Hellin Thomas destroyed her own brand all by herself.  In the wreckage of that, nobody HAS to give her a megaphone, though someone still may.  If Thomas is seen  by enough people as having valuable things to say, she will find people to help her transmit them.  A quirky little outfit called Al-jazeera comes to mind.

  • It’s not clear that having your front row center seat in the White House briefing room taken away is the equivalent of being driven from public life. I’d expect to see her on with Bill Moyers in about ten minutes, but maybe not. She can otherwise start a blog or join Daily Kos.

    That aside, I think what really happened here is that it became intolerable for the White House to have an obstreperous hag journalist in the briefing room, in the front row, who now so publicly and cleanly represented the Obama administration’s subtext on Israel. It would ruin their game of acting on that subtext while talking sideways about it to have that rotten old fishwife pestering them on the question. So I would conclude that if public opinion didn’t drive her out of the room, the White House would have made, or did make, backchannel arrangements that assured her exit.

    Now, as to the substance of her “Go back to Africa” comments and whether that should affect her standing and her livelihood. Well, I don’t know, I’m finding it hard to see that tree for the forest of her stupidity. I’ve never known her as anything but a presumptuous, ignorant, trend-chasing, loud-mouthed slob, so I don’t know what explains her presence in the White House press corps in the first place. It’s hard to reason out a rule of exclusion when you don’t understand the basis of the inclusion.

    Lord knows I’d like to see Arianna Huffington or Andrew Sullivan or Amy Goodman, those sorts of old women, “driven from public life,” or at least to a place where I wouldn’t ever need to think of them again, or believe that they were influencing public discourse (where have you gone Air America), but Helen Thomas might be a special case, in need of more Medieval remedies, featuring water, fire, and Dominican friars.

  • Assuming, for the sake of argument, that she is actually being driven out of public life, so what? The public has the right to shun her, or anyone else,  just as she has the right to air her opinions. 

    Noone owes her or anyone else a forum for their opinions, and noone should be forced to associate with someone they do not wish to be associated with, for whatever reason. I thought this was a pretty well accepted view here.

    • As I said yesterday on my own little turf…
      Well, I can’t speak for Ms. Nine, but my guess is that she knows her Voltaire at least as well as Roy Greenslade.  Even I know that Voltaire would not contend that Ms. Nine HAS to represent Thomas, as that would certainly impinge on Ms. Nine’s rights.  And I very violently disagree that Thomas is “effectively gagged” because a speaker’s bureau declines to represent her.  I mean, there are several hundred million of us who are “effectively gagged” if that is true.
      The whole deal on liberty is that it cuts in favor of us all, which can mean it can be a system that sees Thomas’ interest damaged by the exercise of others’ liberty.   This whole post seems a great big nothing to me.

      • I agree. This is a weak post.

        I have every right to be pissed at this b*tch, and her employer has every right to fire her ass.

  • “Respected American journalist Helen Thomas’s answer shows … a courageous, bold, honest and free opinion which expresses what people across the globe believe: that Israel is a racist state of murderers and thugs,” Hezbollah MP Hussein Moussawi said in a statement.
    That is not a fair depiction of what Thomas said.  It is a predictable depiction of what she said, made by a racist murderer and thug.  It will gain a lot of coinage.  Is Thomas responsible for that?  Yeppers, I think so.

  • Dale Franks – So, lets confine ourselves to what she actually said, and discuss whether denying the legitimacy of Israel is such a horrific opinion that those who express it have to be driven out of public life like some kind of poison troll.

    The answer:

    Yes.  Not only is is disgraceful for her to call an allied country an “occupyer” AND say that the inhabitants of that country need to “go home”, but it is reasonable to consider her remarks evidence of rabid anti-Semitism.

    Libs made the rules about casting out people who say politically incorrect things.  This is just one case where I’m glad to see them enforced.

    With regard to Israel, I will be glad when this international nightmare ends.  I’m not sure why the left has such a rabid hatred for that little an long-suffering country, but at the very least we shouldn’t pile on.

  • Even if you accept the idea that the Jews shouldn’t have had a homeland set up in 1948 where present day Israel exists, that does not mean that driving them out today is the right thing. They have had over 60 years of real democracy, free markets, technical development, and an independent homeland. What, you are going to uproot 60 years of success and send them packing? Her statements were idiotic, even if you accept the basic premis that the UN’s 1948 actions with respect to Israel were wrong.

  • So, lets confine ourselves to what she actually said, and discuss whether denying the legitimacy of Israel is such a horrific opinion that those who express it have to be driven out of public life like some kind of poison troll.

    Far from being driven from public life, Helen Thomas has achieved notoriety- she made news.  At most she has sacrificed a steady paying job, but since most 90 year olds don’t over value long term job security I can’t see how this is a problem to her. 

  • Dale

    “So the only relevant question is whether stating that opinion is so outrageous that she should lose her livelihood for stating it”

    If she had said “all blacks should go back to Africa” than she would have been crucified, then burned with marshmellows toasting on top.

    I am sick and tired of the double standard.

    Conservatives say that they are against Obama’s policies and are called racists.

    She states this about Jews and she is defended.

  • So the only relevant question is whether stating that opinion is so outrageous that she should lose her livelihood for stating it

    >>> Except she didn’t.  She retired.  And it’s doubtful that she would’ve lost her livelihood. What she WOULD have lost would have been the honorific of her seat and the deference she was shown, etc.

    But to answer your question anyway, should she have lost her livelihood?  YES YES YES! A thousand times YES!  And you know why?  Because the Dems spent a whole year + (and they’re still doing it) telling us how racist everyone was.

    So screw them.  I’m quite happy to play it their way.

    ” If so, then the implied conclusion is that questioning the legitimacy of the Israeli state is a disqualification from participating in public discourse (and is no doubt prima facie evidence of anti-Semitism to some).”

    >>> While it is certain evidence of Joooooooo hatred, it does not disqualify anyone from public discourse. Even that old hag is allowed to voice her opinion.

     

  • Look, whatever you may think about the legitimacy of Israel, the arguments of the reconquistas, that’s all irrelevant. It doesn’t have anything at all to do with the issue I was addressing. All of that stuff is a non-sequitur.

    How exactly is this a non-sequitar?  You complained that “conservatives” were being inconsistent because they criticize Thomas while at the same time not embracing the reconquistadors whom you claimed were making the same (or analagous) argument.  A big part of your argument is based upon this contention, so adressing its validity is not a non-sequitar.  It is, in fact, absolutely central.

    You seem to assume that the concept of “arab land” is a valid and rational one.  Please define it.  What counts as “arab” land?  Any land an arab has trodden upon?  Any land where a majority of the population is arab?  Any land where the population in 1900 was arab?  Or 1800?  Or 1453?

    Further you seem to think the advocation of the removal of the Jewish population from the middle east is the equivalent of advocating for a tax break.  Well, to many other people it doesn’t sound like the advocation of just another policy preference…it sounds like a crime against humanity. “the planned deliberate removal from a specific territory, persons of a particular ethnic group, by force or intimidation, in order to render that area ethnically homogenous” is how the UN defines “ethnic cleansing,”  and it would certainly be fitting for those who wish to give Israel “back to the arabs.”  And just saying “well, lots of people feel that way” doesn;t make it any less heinous.

  • BTW- I just want to address 1 para from the original Helen Thomas post:

    “And I find it fascinating that the same people who get themselves in a tizzy about “hate speech”, political correctness, and speech codes are the same people who are cheering on Helen Thomas’ firing.  Turns out that they don’t really object to speech codes or political correctness.  They just want them enforced on a different set of opinions.”

    I think that’s a regrettable sentence, as you attribute malignant intent to those  happy to see the machine turned on Helen Thomas.  I think  I represent a good many who absolutely hate the idiocy you mention above, but what we hate even more is the double standard.  If  Trent Lott becomes the “MOST RACIST PERSON IN THE WORLD” for what he said and had to be driven out and repudiated, then Helen Thomas gets the same treatment. I happily get down in the gutter to make them play by their rules in the hopes that maybe if they get burned enough, they’ll learn a lesson and take the hint. But if they don’t, hey at least we give them a taste of their own medicine. 

    Just because someone else tried to rig the game is no reason not to try to win it.

  • Israel was established by the United nations to provide a home for the homeless Jews after World War II and on that authority Helen Thomas and her ilk might declare the Jewish people “occupiers, despite Israel’s declared historic right to the holy lands.
    However, fighting and winning five wars is reason enough to declare the present boundaries of the Jewish state to be rightfully Israeli  under the established practice of keeping the bounties fairly won in wars.  At age 90, our unread journalist must have come upon that concept in her time here on earth.
    Helen  Thomas journalism reeks of  “buggy-whip” mentality.  With her hate for Joos, it is a good thing  that they are not all named Sammy Davis Jr.
     
     

  • “And I find it fascinating that the same people who get themselves in a tizzy about “hate speech”, political correctness, and speech codes are the same people who are cheering on Helen Thomas’ firing.  Turns out that they don’t really object to speech codes or political correctness.  They just want them enforced on a different set of opinions.”
    Which is just another stupid statement.  Hate speech, PC, and speech codes are EXPRESSLY proscriptive.  They are overtly designed to prevent  speech, to squelch unsanctioned speech, and to enable people to punish speech…not via the marketplace of ideas, since we ALWAYS have had that, and used it…but by compulsion, applied by an arbitrary elite.
     
    NOBODY lives in a world that is free of consequence.  Not Hellin Thomas, not you, not me.  What Thomas ran into was not a “speech code”, but the market.  She crapped on her own rice bowl, and she should eat the consequences just like a drug company that produces poison instead of aspirin.

  • OH CRIKEY, losing her liveihood?????????  At her age and the money she must have made, she is hardly losing her liveihood!

  • I don’t think she should lose her job just for saying something hateful, stupid and offensive to most of her potential audience and her employer’s buyers. She was just really past the due date for retirement, continuously annoying and insanely leftist and shouldn’t have been hired in the first place.

    But as others have pointed out, she’s hardly out on the streets picking up cigarette butts for a living.

  • I’ve seen comments saying that the Palestinians should be sent to other Arab lands.   Those make as much sense as Thomas’s comment.   The Europeans colonized the globe, and Israel was simply a late example.   The whole connection of territory with ethnicity — or a religion — is misguided.   Going back in history where there have been  migrations and colonization leads absurd places.  It’s just as valid to send the Whites in North America back to Europe, as the Jews in Israel back to Europe.  People live where they live, better to work with that.  Thomas showed a weakness in logical thought — just like those who want to send Palestinians elsewhere in the Arab world show a similar weakness.

    • Erb, what the Paleoswinians have is a choice – be peaceful and participatory citizens of Israel, like all kinds of Muslims and Christians and even Pagans are, wage war against the legitimate government of Israel and risk it all, or seek their fortunes elsewhere.  The choice is theirs, and the consequences are theirs.
      And if they persist in the second choice, I have zero sympathy for them.  Vae Victus.
      Every piece of land Israel has, they have taken in winning wars where they have been viciously attacked.  Israel has not started any of those wars, let alone wars of conquest.  Isrel has the absolute right to exist, as a jewish state, within their present borders, and to preserve that state through what means are necessary, including lawful war.
      Let us speak of international law. Specifically, the law concerning war at sea. There has been mention previously that statements about the requirements of international law as it applies to the attempt to break the Israeli blockade were merely opinions. OK, then let us look at the actual texts.
      Is there a state of belligerency between the Palestinian authorities who govern Gaza and the State of Israel?
      Yes. The Palestinian government of Gaza has repeatedly declared itself to be at war with Israel, conducted attacks on Israeli territory, civilians, and armed forces. It has refused to negotiate with the government of Israel. If you accept that the Palestinians govern Gaza, they are at war. If they do not govern Gaza, then the area and its inhabitants are pirates, bandits, etc. and are outside the laws of nations.
      Given the state of war between the Palestinians of Gaza and the State of Israel, what care under the various Hague and Geneva Conventions is owed to the Palestinians by the Israelis?
      It is extremely limited. Article 2 of the Hague Convention defines its scope:

      Art. 2. The provisions contained in the Regulations mentioned in Article I are only binding on the Contracting Powers, in case of war between two or more of them.

      The Palestinians in Gaza are not a Contracting Power, having never signed the Hague and Geneva Conventions, nor followed any of its strictures. If they were following those strictures, they could still legally attempt to claim the protections, however they are not. Those Palestinians engaged in combat against Israel are not covered by the protections of the Geneva and Hague Conventions because they fail to follow the basic requirements of being a recognized belligerent:

      ANNEX TO THE CONVENTION
      REGULATIONS RESPECTING THE LAWS AND CUSTOMS OF WAR ON LAND
      SECTION I
      ON BELLIGERENTS
      CHAPTER I
      On the qualifications of belligerents
      Article 1. The laws, rights, and duties of war apply not only to armies, but also to militia and volunteer
      corps fulfilling the following conditions:
      1. To be commanded by a person responsible for his subordinates;
      2. To have a fixed distinctive emblem recognizable at a distance;
      3. To carry arms openly; and
      4. To conduct their operations in accordance with the laws and customs of war.
      In countries where militia or volunteer corps constitute the army, or form part of it, they are included under the denomination “army.”
      Art. 2. The population of a territory which has not been occupied who, on the enemy’s approach, spontaneously take up arms to resist the invading troops without having time to organize themselves in accordance with Article 1, shall be regarded as belligerent, if they respect the laws and customs of war. [my emphasis]

      Israel, as a signatory to the Geneva Conventions, is covered by Common Articles 2 & 3 of the 4th Geneva Convention, which extends protections to civilians in international conflicts and to a lesser extent to civilians in armed conflicts within a single nation’s borders. However, Article 4 of the 4th Geneva Convention in the course of defining who the class of “Protected Parties” actually consists of specifically EXCLUDES “Nationals of a State which is not bound by the Convention”.
      If Palestinian Gaza is a state, which is at war with Israel; as a non-signer of the Hague and Geneva Conventions, neither those in arms against Israel, nor their civilian counterparts are covered by them. If Palestinian Gaza is NOT a state, and is not under the jurisdiction of a state [and no one I know of claims them] they are at best “unlawful combatants” and more like “hostis humani generis“.
      That status accrues also to foreign nationals who act on their behalf as part of their war effort.
      Now moving to the rules of warfare at sea. Naval warfare is governed under international law by “The San Remo Manual on International Law Applicable to Armed Conflicts at Sea, 12 June 1994“. This is the same manual carried on all US warships and is the basic text on the subject. A copy posted by the International Committee of the Red Cross can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/2v6jxty
      Israel, years ago, declared a blockade of the coast of Gaza, openly and meeting the terms of the San Remo Manual which requires:

      SECTION II : METHODS OF WARFARE
      Blockade
      93. A blockade shall be declared and notified to all belligerents and neutral States.
      94. The declaration shall specify the commencement, duration, location, and extent of the blockade and the period within which vessels of neutral States may leave the blockaded coastline.
      95. A blockade must be effective. The question whether a blockade is effective is a question of fact.
      96. The force maintaining the blockade may be stationed at a distance determined by military requirements. [my emphasis. There is no bar to maintaining a blockade in international waters. See Cuban Missile Crisis, 1962]
      97. A blockade may be enforced and maintained by a combination of legitimate methods and means of warfare provided this combination does not result in acts inconsistent with the rules set out in this document.
      98. Merchant vessels believed on reasonable grounds to be breaching a blockade may be captured. Merchant vessels which, after prior warning, clearly resist capture may be attacked. [my emphasis]
      99. A blockade must not bar access to the ports and coasts of neutral States.
      100. A blockade must be applied impartially to the vessels of all States.
      101. The cessation, temporary lifting, re-establishment, extension or other alteration of a blockade must be declared and notified as in paragraphs 93 and 94.

      In reference to #95, that is a term of art in naval warfare. You cannot just declare a blockade, you have to actively patrol and enforce it. If it is not constantly enforced, it does not exist legally. Attention is drawn to #98. The term “attacked” includes all legal means and includes sinking.
      The question of what flag the vessel attempting to breach the blockade is flying is irrelevant.
      There are provisions for exemptions from attack, which some may try to bring into the discussion:

      SECTION III : ENEMY VESSELS AND AIRCRAFT EXEMPT FROM ATTACK
      Classes of vessels exempt from attack
      47. The following classes of enemy vessels are exempt from attack:
      (a) hospital ships;
      (b) small craft used for coastal rescue operations and other medical transports;
      (c) vessels granted safe conduct by agreement between the belligerent parties including:
      (i) cartel vessels, e.g., vessels designated for and engaged in the transport of prisoners of war;
      (ii) vessels engaged in humanitarian missions, including vessels carrying supplies indispensable to the survival of the civilian population, and vessels engaged in relief actions and rescue operations;
      (d) vessels engaged in transporting cultural property under special protection;
      (e) passenger vessels when engaged only in carrying civilian passengers;
      (f) vessels charged with religious, non-military scientifc or philanthropic missions, vessels collecting scientific data of likely military applications are not protected;
      (g) small coastal fishing vessels and small boats engaged in local coastal trade, but they are subject to the regulations of a belligerent naval commander operating in the area and to inspection;
      (h) vessels designated or adapted exclusively for responding to pollution incidents in the marine environment;
      (i) vessels which have surrendered;
      (j) life rafts and life boats. [my emphasis]

      However that exemption is not absolute, and is specifically revoked under the following conditions:

      Conditions of exemption
      48. Vessels listed in paragraph 47 are exempt from attack only if they:
      (a) are innocently employed in their normal role;
      (b) submit to identification and inspection when required; and
      (c) do not intentionally hamper the movement of combatants and obey orders to stop or move out of the way when required. [my emphasis]

      and

      Loss of exemption
      Hospital ships
      [Sections 49-51 deal exclusively with the special conditions of Hospital Ships.]
      All other categories of vessels exempt from attack
      52. If any other class of vessel exempt from attack breaches any of the conditions of its exemption in paragraph 48, it may be attacked only if:
      (a) diversion or capture is not feasible;
      (b) no other method is available for exercising military control;
      (c) the circumstances of non-compliance are sufficiently grave that the vessel has become, or may be reasonably assumed to be, a military objective; and
      (d) the collateral casualties or damage will not be disproportionate to the military advantage gained or expected.

      The attempt to divert or capture (52a) the blockade running flotilla was in fact what was required by international law as a first resort. They were attempting to exercise military control (52b) as allowed under the laws of naval warfare in maintaining a blockade. Since the blockade is in place to bar offensive weapons, especially rockets and missiles, from reaching Gaza to prevent further firings on Israeli civilians, a refusal to allow inspection or diversion does raise a reasonable assumption that it is carrying weapons, regardless of what they claim. That makes them a legitimate military objective (52c). While it is a judgment call as to proportion, the IDF is balancing the lives of their civilians who may be attacked in their homes by imported missiles against the lives of those who are deliberately breaking international law to aid those who would kill those civilians. (52d)
      If it was Venezuelan flagged ships possibly bringing rockets to be fired from an enclave of the so-called Nation of Atzlan into Corpus Cristi, Texas; I know where I would want the balance to be in the judgment call if they were stopped by the US Coast Guard or Navy. [or Republic of Texas equivalents thereof *smile*]
      Israel had every legal right to declare the blockade, to enforce it where their judgment of military requirements says to place the blockade line, to stop, to board, to search, or to divert any ship attempting to approach the blockade line. Under international law. And under that same international law, once there was resistance or refusal; they had every right to sink those vessels. And they still do for the next wave coming at them, and any after that.
      Yes, international law grants rights and protections in war zones to innocent civilian traffic. But to keep those rights and to not be re-classified as a target, it also imposes responsibilities and duties of compliance. Failure to fulfill those responsibilities, or comply with directions means you are no longer an innocent civilian, but rather an enemy belligerent, subject to treatment as such.
      I do wonder, if say those who object to the stopping of the blockade runners have ever driven in a foreign country in a vehicle with US plates. Say they come to a police roadblock. Do they stop, do as the officers say; and assuming that where they were going, what they were carrying, and what they were doing was legal, get sent on their way? Or do they try to breach the roadblock, try to outrun the cops, and then are surprised and aggrieved when they are stopped in a less than gentle manner? And if they resist the cops, do they believe that nothing should be done to them; either in the course of being subdued, or in court afterwards?

    • Palestinians should be sent to other Arab lands.   Those make as much sense as Thomas’s comment.

      Nice conclusory thought, dude.  I daily loose whatever respect for your thinking I once had.  See if you can justify that “thought” with some logic.  And nobody I know has advocated forcible resettlement of Palestinians.  I DO advocate having their Muslim brethern provide them a “homeland”, since that is one of their excuses for their bloodlust.  Remember, a Palestinian state is as much a unicorn production as most of the crap you seem to believe in on these pages.
       
      Also, and not to beat a dead idiot, Jews are not “European”.  Do you even read?

      • I advocate it.
         
        Well not exactly, what I advocate is a UN occupying force in Gaza with VERY strict policies for at least ten years where any house can be searched for any reason at any time, and no weapons are allowed whatsoever, nor anything that can blow up.
         
        Meanwhile a fund will be set up which Israel will contribute to where any Palestinian will be paid to repatriate to other lands. If they make that choice they cannot return.  If they are caught preaching violence or planning violence then they are forcefully removed.
         
        This is the only thing short of genocide that I think has a chance of working.

  • Bravo Helen Thomas,
    It takes one gutsy old lady to speak the truth. Helen you remind me of another gutsy old lady who said Hell No I won’t sit at the back of the bus.
    Finally an American journalist says what the rest of the world knows, that Palestine is an occupied county.  And by people of the world I mean the peoples of Africa, Europe, Asia and Australia.
    We all feel sorry for you living in the USA, as your media is not unbiased or free.
    The greatest holocaust in History took place in the Americas, over 60 Million American Indians slaughtered and their land stolen. 
    And Yes Australia, we have our own shameful past with the holocaust of the Aboriginal people. 
    But unlike America, Australian’s and our media acknowledge the past and encourage all our citizens to acknowledge the truth, and as a people we say “Never Again”
    Israel and its American backers seem to say “Never Again…to us” and seem set upon revenge, and attack anyone who dare suggest that the King has no clothes.

    • Wow.  The way you exonerated yourselves from what you did with Australia’s aboriginals is just sad.  Yeah, you had a big lament fest on what you did.  But I don’t see you leaving or cutting million dollar checks to the survivors.  You just said, ‘we’re more openly sensitive about what we did than the Americans so that makes what we did OK now and water under the bridge.’
       
      Couple of differences.
       
      Unlike Australia, the aboriginal people of North America aren’t truely the aboriginal people.  They are the final wave of immigration from Asia.  They were  the longest tenants.  But they were no different than anywhere else on the planet except maybe Australia and a few Pacific Islands in terms of being the original people.
       
      The other is that many Indians sided with the British during the Revolution and up to the war of 1812.  Sometimes in strategically pointless, but bloody attacks.  This is where early Americans became callous towards the consequences of their expansion.

      • The other is that many Indians sided with the British during the Revolution and up to the war of 1812.  Sometimes in strategically pointless, but bloody attacks.  This is where early Americans became callous towards the consequences of their expansion.
        OMG.  This maybe the most ignorant statement I’ve ever read from you.  Maybe.
        “Early Americans” never considered the consequences of their expansions since Jamestown in 1607.  In fact, one of the major reasons some Native Americans sided with the British is because they felt it was the best option to staying European expansion.
        And this…
         
        Unlike Australia, the aboriginal people of North America aren’t truely the aboriginal people.  They are the final wave of immigration from Asia.
        … is just weird.  I mean, why stop there?  Why not take it to its logical conclusion: that all peoples (except Africans) are not aboriginal as they were originally migrants from Africa.
         
        This is almost as though you are justifying the expulsion and slaughter of millions of Native Americans throughout history.

        • People invade take over and become the new owners.  Its how its done and has been done since the start of history with few exceptions.  Because the US was one of the most recent to do it, they’re the bad ones?  Bullshit.

        • Didn’t catch your last line on the last read through.
           
          I’m not justifying it.  It is what it is.  What I’m saying is that we’re not the only ones and and I don’t need to be condescended to by people equally as guilty.

    • Ignorant, anti-semitic, and Australian is no way to go through life son.

  • This whole post seems a great big nothing to me.

    Yet you felt compelled to leave seven comments to it.

  • As far as what the Jews are facing; this pretty well summed it up for me. About 3 minutes in is the money shot.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fSvyv0urTE

  • As far as what the Jews are facing; this pretty well summed it up for me. About 3 minutes in is the money shot.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fSvyv0urTE

    (I goofed this up the first time, hope it doesn’t show up twice.)

  • Isn’t this a private employment matter between Thomas and her employer?  What if she would have said that blacks were better off under slavery?  That could be her opinion and she has every right to say it.  But an employer has a right to not want to hire people who are crazy.
     
    We could spend all day debating whether her comments are repulsive, horrendous, or just merely deeply offensive, but it’s Hearts’ right to decide they want someone more normal.

  • I pretty much agree with Dale – I was just messing around in the previous comments.
    But, I will make the following point…which is that her statement does not seem so innocuous as I thought at first.
    Notice how she thought they should go back to Germany as her first choice. There weren’t too many German Jews left after the holocaust and making them return to Germany is a bit harsh. Isn’t it strange her first choice is Germany?
    Then  she mentions Poland – where some famous camps were. And finally, after some thinking, she adds America, wherever – perhaps in reference to American Jews who emigrated to Israel and not as the logical place for Israelis or displaced Jewish refugees in 1945 to go.
    And how about the Jews who cam from Arab countries? Isn’t sort of a death sentence to send them back to where they came from?
    She could have just meant that Israel should never have existed, but does she really imagine that Germany would be the first destination of Jewish refugees in Europe? Its not what would pop into my mind first.
    She could have just meant that they should go there now, as Germany no longer has personal memories for most Israelis, but again – your first thought is Germany, not the USA?
    Maybe Germany simply popped up in her mind because of the Holocaust and it was simple association. That’s the most generous way I can see it.

  • I think the overwhelming majority of the people living in Israel have in fact been born there. Imagine the outrage if someone said that all black people in the USA should go back to Africa…

  • No, she should not have lost her job because of her statement.   She shouldn’t have had a job to loose.  She was a piss poor journalist.  A worse columnist.  Deferring to her because of her age, her gender, or because she had been around for 50 yrs was just silly.  She looked silly most of the time and it reflected on the WH press pool and every administration who continued to stroke her silly ego.
    FWIW I think everyone should be able to speak their mind freely, but just as I told my son when he was growing up.  The best fights are those you can walk away from, however there may come a time and a bully who won’t let you walk away without a fight.  In that case you’ll have no choice but to defend yourself and unfortunately because schools often have twits in charge, you may well have to pay a price for defending yourself, even if you did nothing to bring this on yourself.   You have to decide when enough is enough, no matter the cost.
    A lot of people have paid a price for their right to express themselves freely, without giving thought to the consequences or perhaps attempting to tailor the message so that it’s not so in your face or offensive.   Many have paid a price even when they tried to keep the message within social conventions.  I don’t think Helen should be exempt because she’s 90 or female or a ‘journalist’ or whatever.
    Like all the other freedoms we enjoy, the right to speak freely isn’t free.  Someone paid so you and I could have that right.
    This is life.  Deal with it.
     

  • Liberals feel they can say what they want with zero consequences.

    Liberals also feel that conservatives cant say squat that would “offend them”

    You cant have it both ways.

    Thomas had the constitutional right to say what she said. 

    That doesnt mean that
    a.  We have to listen to it. 
    b.  we cant show our displeasure at her opinion
    c.  We have to agree with what she said
    d.  point out inconsistencies with her actions vs how conservatives are treated.
    e.  Have to nod yes at the excuses for her
    f.  Have to withhold our happiness at her sorry tired old ugly ass getting fired.
     

  • Hearst is a business, not a charity ward for Hezb’allah fans. If she’s going to channel Neo-Nazi/Hamas press releases, Hearst can save a lot of money by going straight to Stormfront.
    She’s not “driven from public life”,  and she can peddle her Judenha$$ elsewhere–but Hearst and her talent agency are under no compulsion to assist her in staging “Springtime for Hitler: The Revival”.

  • Abbas tells U.S. Jews: I would never deny Jewish right to the land of Israel
    So where dow this leave Helen Thomas ?   … in the ‘Twlight Zone’

  • What happens to HT is between her and her employers. She was not a govt employee nor was she a representative of any US governmental agency. She is free to voice whatever opinions she has and reap either the benefits or consequences of those opinions.