Hearst reporter Helen Thomas has rightly received criticism for her offensive comment that Israelis should “get the hell out of Palestine” and “go home [to] Poland and Germany and America.” Though Thomas quickly apologized, issuing a written statement that said “I deeply regret my comments I made last week regarding the Israelis and the Palestinians,” some conservatives are still calling for her to be fired.
Sam Stein reports that one of those critics is former Bush Press Secretary Ari Fleischer, who said in an email that Thomas “should lose her job over this“:
“As someone who is Jewish, and as someone who worked with her and used to like her, I find this appalling,” [Fleischer said.]
“She is advocating religious cleansing. How can Hearst stand by her? If a journalist, or a columnist, said the same thing about blacks or Hispanics, they would already have lost their jobs.”
But are conservatives applying the religious cleansing standard equally? Consider Gov. Mike Huckabee, who has on numerous occasions voiced his opposition to a Palestinian state in Palestine, saying that “the Palestinians can create their homeland in many other places in the Middle East, outside Israel.” Like the most radical right-wing elements in Israel, Huckabee’s conception of Israel includes Palestinian lands occupied by Israeli forces in 1967.
Huckabee has never apologized for any of this, for the simple reason that this is what he really thinks: The Palestinians should be transferred out of Palestine. As far as I know, no conservatives have ever criticized Huckabee for these comments, let alone called on Fox News to fire him. I look forward to Ari Fleischer doing that very soon.