Why won't Barack Obama cut ties to a group promoting anti-Semitism?
Media Matters is a George Soros-funded group that has been promoting anti-Semitism, as well as opposition to Israel. Among its employees is M.J. Rosenberg-who proudly proclaims he popularized the term "Israel-firster." Many Jewish groups, from the Anti-Defamation League to The American Jewish Committee to the Simon Wiesenthal Center has condemned the group for its actions.
What has also become problematic is that Media Matters has ties to the Obama White House. Staffers from the White House held regular meetings and even a weekly conference call with Media Matters to coordinate re-election efforts, apparently (Media Matters has also taken on Fox News, as well as Israel and American Jews).
Now liberal Alan Dershowitz, who supported Barack Obama in 2008, has joined the fray. Dershowitz has now pledged to personally make Media Matters a campaign issue unless President Obama severs ties with Media Matters. Buzzfeed:
Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, a leading Democratic lawyer who takes a hawkish line on Israel, has declared a personal war on the liberal group Media Matters, which has branched out into sharp criticism of Israel.
"Not only will [the Media Matters controversy] be an election matter, I will personally make it an election matter," Dershowitz, a professor at Harvard Law School, told WABC's Aaron Klein today.
Dershowitz has been sharply criticizing Media Matters for weeks, but suggested for the first time today he intends to drive the controversy into the political conversation.
"I don't know whether President Obama has any idea that Media Matters has turned the corner against Israel in this way," he said. "I can tell you this, he will know very shortly because I am beginning a serious campaign on this issue and I will not let it drop until and unless [writer and activist MJ] Rosenberg is fired from Media Matters, or Media Matters changes its policy or the White House disassociates itself from Media Matters."
He also condemned the hate speech spewing forth from Media Matters in a column in the New York Daily News:
I first came across some of these vile quotes about "Israel firsters" and "dual loyalty" on an actual neo-Nazi website. Surprisingly, however, they were attributed not to the usual suspects, but to a spokesman for Media Matters, a hard left Democratic media attack and watchdog group that started out as an antidote to Fox News, and that still has close connections to the Obama White House.
Barack Obama should be held to words he spoke in 2008, when he had to fend off criticism of his ties to Pastor Jeremiah Wright, Junior (who also specialized in speech redolent of racism, anti-Americanism, and opposition to Israel-and support for Hamas).
Then- Senator Barack Obama proclaimed that "nobody has spoken out more fiercely on the issue of anti-Semitism than I have." Actually, there was no evidence ever presented that showed that statement to be truthful. ABC News's Jake Tapper mocked the boast by wondering how Obama stacked up next to Elie Wiesel, Simon Wiesenthal, and, coincidentally, Alan Dershowitz.
One might also question Obama's commitment to fighting anti-Semitism when one realizes he marched as part of the Million Man March of Louis Farrakhan, one of the nation's most vile anti-Semites. Needless to say, Obama has been quiescent when it comes to the raging anti-Semitism in the Muslim world -- a community he widely praised in his Cairo speech and has otherwise courted (even bowing to the Saudi King, despite Saudi Arabia's leading role in spreading anti-Semitism). Lest we forget, his favorite foreign leader is Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, no slouch when it comes to stoking anti-Semitism.
Furthermore, he appointed Hannah Rosenthal, a fellow left-leaning Chicagoan, as head of the Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism. Rosenthal had previously blamed Israel (Jews) for causing anti-Semitism. Where is Hannah Rosenthal when it comes to condemning Media Matters? Isn't that her job-to combat anti-Semitism.
Lately, Obama has also come under criticism for refusing to fire his Ambassador to Belgium, Howard Gutman. Gutman also blamed Israel for causing anti-Semitism. Yet Gutman continues to represent America.
Will President Obama live up to his pledge to fight anti-Semitism by rebuking Media Matters and by making it clear that officials from his administration will no longer communicate with people who work for Media Matters until MJ Rosenberg is fired and the promotion of anti-Semitism ends? Given his history of associating with anti-Semites, one can fairly be skeptical that he will respond to Dershowitz's challenge.
Was Obama's claim to be an opponent of anti-Semitism just a campaign sound bite?