Saturday, November 28, 2009
Jimmy Carter Prize Goes to: Naomi Klein
The Jimmy Carter Prize for the Advancement of Douchebaggery goes to Naomi Klein for supporting the irrational, hateful and counterproductive cultural & economic boycott of Israel. After reading this I hope that my liberal compatriots will take Ms. Klein's other economic and political opinions with a huge bag of salt.
Enclosed are excerpts from an article by Hillel Neuer of the United Nations Watch, that explores her douchebaggery. To view the full article, click on the link at the bottom of the page:
Supporters of liberal democratic values may have a hard time understanding why anti-globalization activist Naomi Klein has recruited Jane Fonda and other stars to boycott the Toronto International Film Festival for the crime of showing films from Tel Aviv, a symbol of tolerance in a region of tyranny.
Klein has never called for a boycott of films or any other products from the dozens of Arab and Islamic countries that systematically subjugate their women, torture dissidents and persecute religious and ethnic minorities.
Nor has she ever called for the boycotting of films from the many Western democracies, including Canada, whose soldiers are fighting Islamist terrorists in Afghanistan or Iraq.
Klein's singling out of Israel -- particularly its most liberal city and cultural sector -- has no rational basis.
This should come as no surprise. For while Klein's statements and writings on Israel pose as sober analysis, the truth is that she has always acted on this subject out of intense emotion, hysteria and anger, rather than rational thought, facts or logic.
And now, in a cover story for this month's issue of Harper's Magazine, Klein offers a revisionist whitewash of the anti-Semitic Durban conference of 2001, laments the collapse of this year's Durban II conference and portrays Jewish organizations as lying profiteers who sabotaged this UN cure-all for racism. As she did in Ramallah, Klein accuses my organization, UN Watch, of "misinformation," yet fails to name a single example.
But Klein has certainly succeeded in becoming today's leading opponent of Israel in the Western world. While this is a new role for someone famous as an anti-capitalist crusader, the truth is that Klein has nurtured a strange rage against her own people, faith and national cause, from a remarkably young age.
At 12, as Klein has proudly recounted, she wrote her Bat Mitzvah speech "about Jews being racist." Her target then was attitudes supposedly held by her sixth-grade classmates in Montreal's well-respected Jewish People's School.
Klein's article was anything but normal. Its thesis sentence and blaring headline: "What Israel has become: Racism and misogyny at the core of its being.
"Israeli men," she said, "reach maturity by brutalizing and degrading Palestinians." Then there was "Israeli men's misogyny toward Israeli women.
Most disturbing, said Klein, "is something known to Israeli women as 'Holocaust pornography,' where images of emaciated women near ovens, shower heads, cattle cars and the like are used to sell clothing and other products." Jewish women, she informed her readers, "are sexualized as Holocaust victims for Israeli men to masturbate over ... the themes are fire, gas, trains, emaciation and death.
If such aberrant ads or magazines ever existed, they were well hidden. But Klein was looking to demonize -- not only Israel, but Judaism, and Jews.
"A Jewish education is an education of fear," continued Klein. "Jews made the shift from victims to victimizers with terrifying ease."
"I wish to be saved from Israel," she concluded. "I am a Jew against Israel -- just as Israel repeatedly proves itself to be against me."
In her recent op-ed calling on Toronto to boycott Israeli films, Klein attacks the Jewish state for objecting to the Goldstone inquiry on Gaza created by the UN Human Rights Council -- in which the Arab-controlled body declared Israel guilty in advance.
The path to Middle East peace requires mutual dialogue, recognition and compromise -- not irrational boycotts motivated by selective morality, anger and rage.
Hillel Neuer is executive director of UN Watch in Geneva ( www.unwatch.org).