Via Phil Weiss, in an interview with Israeli opposition leader Tzipi Livni, the New York Times’ Deborah Solomon demonstrates the flagrant double standard that exists in the American media in regard to pro-Israel versus anti-Israel terrorism:
SOLOMON: Your parents were among the country’s founders.
LIVNI: They were the first couple to marry in Israel, the very first. Both of them were in the Irgun. They were freedom fighters, and they met while boarding a British train. When the British Mandate was here, they robbed a train to get the money in order to buy weapons.
SOLOMON: It was a more romantic era. Is your mom still alive?
What’s amazing here is not only does Solomon neglect to challenge Livni’s characterization of her parents’ membership in a terrorist group as “freedom fight[ing],” Solomon herself volunteers further assistance in the whitewash. Even if this is a clumsy attempt at sarcasm, can you imagine any mainstream American journalist performing this service in regard to Hamas terrorism? I doubt it.
While Livni may prefer to think that the Irgun weren’t terrorists, and Solomon would like to help, it’s worth noting that both the New York Times and the World Zionist Congress saw things very differently at the time. On December 24, 1946, the Times reported “The World Zionist Congress in its final session here strongly condemned by a vote early today terrorist activities in Palestine and ‘the shedding of innocent blood as a means of political warfare‘” by the groups Irgun and the Stern Gang.
I very much doubt that the civilians who were murdered by the Irgun at the King David Hotel, nor those massacred and ethnically cleansed at Deir Yassin and Jaffa, nor the hundreds killed in various other Irgun attacks look upon that era as particularly romantic. Their memories deserve far better.