The Chronicle’s seemingly dispassionate front page article about J Street’s national conference unfortunately included disingenuous and uninformed assertions. It quoted Nancy Bernstein’s defending having speakers from the PLO and IfNotNow saying that “we are not afraid of hearing those perspectives … if somebody has an idea that not everyone supports, it still might be important to hear what they have to say.” In which case one might wonder why they didn’t invite someone from an organization like CAMERA, for example, who could speak to the history and legalities of the “occupation.”
And what sort of reporting is it that blandly describes IfNotNow as a “progressive (sic) Jewish activist group that targets Jewish institutions it sees as enabling Israel’s treatment (one presumes that the treatment is negative) of the Palestinians.” Since the article noted that the J Street attendees said Kaddish for the Tree of Life victims, it might have noted that IfNotNow members choose to recite the Kaddish for Palestinian terrorists, but not their Jewish victims. Or, since the reporters characterize IfNotNow as “progressive,” how do they characterize the group’s advocating the banning of Jewish lesbians from a dyke gathering because they carried a Pride flag with a Magen David on it? What’s “progressive” about that?
It’s particularly unnerving to find this sort of coverage on the eve of the anniversary of Kristallnacht. What have we learned?
Ann Sheckter Powell | Pittsburgh