web analytics
April 27, 2015 / 8 Iyar, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Monitor »

When Abba Eban KO’d Mike Wallace


Media-Monitor-logo

Last week the Monitor noted that, contrary to popular perception, mainstream media bias against Israel is not something that developed as a result of Israel’s allegedly intransigent negotiating posture, or of Israel’s supposedly disproportional response to terrorist provocation, or of the ascension to power of so-called hard line prime ministers.

No, the tilt against Israel began, slowly at first, in the aftermath of the 1967 Six-Day War and proceeded to pick up steam over the next forty-plus years. But even before 1967 – even when Israel was more of a dot on the map than it is today, even when the Old City of Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria were in Arab hands, even before there was any talk of Palestinians or a Palestinian state and the conflict was seen as one between Israel and the Arab nations – there already were media figures who brimmed with hostility toward Israel.

The Monitor was reminded of this while viewing a fascinating episode of the old “Mike Wallace Interviews” TV program. The show, which aired on April 12, 1958, focused on the 10th anniversary of Israeli statehood and Wallace’s guest was Abba Eban, Israel’s ambassador to the U.S.

Wallace’s tone was prosecutorial throughout, but what makes the interview especially instructive is that many of the arguments made by Wallace against Israel are precisely the same that are still being made by Israel’s enemies more than a half a century later. Again, this was Israel in 1958, nine years before it found itself in possession of any of the territories that, we are now told, constitute the crux of the problem.

The interview can be seen, along with a complete transcript, at www.hrc.utexas.edu/collections/digital (select “Mike Wallace”). Eban, by the way, was nothing less than magnificent in responding to Wallace’s provocations.

Here are some highlights:

WALLACE: … An estimated seven hundred thousand Palestinian Arabs were left homeless during the Arab-Israeli war of ‘48. Israel refuses to readmit them; they live in bitterness and such men as historian Arnold Toynbee has said this: “The evil deeds committed by the Zionist Jews against the Arabs are comparable to crimes committed against the Jews by the Nazis.” How do you feel about that?

EBAN: Well, about Professor Toynbee’s statement I can only repeat what I’ve written, that it is a monstrous blasphemy. Here he takes the massacre of millions of our men, women and children, and he compares it to the plight of Arab refugees alive, on their kindred soil, suffering certain anguish, but of course possessed of the supreme gift of life…. The refugee problem is the result of an Arab policy. An Arab policy which created the problem by the invasion of Israel, which perpetuates it by refusing to accommodate them into their expanding labor market, and which refuses to solve the problem which they have the full capacity to solve.

WALLACE: Of course, the problem of the refugees is allied with the problem of territorial expansion on the part of Israel. A major Arab spokesman here in the United States … says, “The area of the territories held by Israel today exceeds by about 40 percent the area of the territories given Israel by the United Nations. Most of this added area,” he says, “was taken by force and should therefore be relinquished by Israel.”

EBAN: Well, I think this gentleman need not to lose any sleep at night worrying about whether the State of Israel is too big. Really there is nothing more grotesque or eccentric in the international life of our times than the doctrine that little Israel, eight thousand square miles in area, should become even smaller in order that the vast Arab Empire should still further expand.

WALLACE: Mr. Ambassador, do you … foresee further territorial expansion by Israel?

EBAN: Well I don’t like the word “further” Mr. Wallace, because, as I have said, our present boundaries rest upon agreements beyond which we have not encroached, but we certainly do not desire to expand our frontiers…. We are prepared to accept a guaranteed settlement with the Arab States on the present frontiers.

Are they so prepared? I wonder whether the issue isn’t one of Arab expansion. Here sit I, the accredited representative of Israel, and I declare that Israel will sign a peace treaty with the Arab states on the present frontier. Now you get an Arab ambassador sitting here to say that he will have a settlement with Israel on the present frontier, and you will really have a story.

Jason Maoz can be reached at jmaoz@jewishpress.com

About the Author: Jason Maoz is the Senior Editor of The Jewish Press. He can be contacted at jmaoz@jewishpress.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “When Abba Eban KO’d Mike Wallace”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Fighters from the Al Qaeda-linked radical Islamist Al-Nusra rebel group in Syria.
Sources: Al Qaeda Bombed Hezbollah and Framed Israel
Latest Indepth Stories
World Zionist Congress elections end April 30.

Groups promoting anti-Israel/anti-Jewish BDS right on their websites are running in the WZC election

Former New York Governor George Pataki

Pataki is the last Republican Governor to win a majority of Jewish votes.

President Obama

Obama’s desire to be “fair” enables Iran to get nuclear weapons which will threaten global security

israeli-american flags

All GOP candidates will continue seeking – and praying – for Jewish money with greater success.

The one reason to make Aliyah outweighs all the arguments not to move to Israel.

“We returned to this Land not in order to be murdered, or uprooted. We came here to be replanted!”

I don’t fear for the future of our people because I believe Yeshiva University has created an “Iron Dome” of Jewish leadership

Poland’s great Jewish cities where Jewish life had once flourished and thrived, were now desolate

Chief rabbi, Rav Dovid Lau, stated that the Torah community’s turnout in the WZO election is vital.

Iran has at its core the same ideology as that of ISIS but, inaccurately, is thought a lesser threat

An early Yom Ha’atzmaut gathering for Israel’s 67th birthday with Pres. Rivlin of Israel and guests

Israel’s Memorial Day shouldn’t be a day of mourning, it’s a day to honor, not another Holocaust Day

God’s 3 part promise for Israel: to the Avot; a plentiful land; the eventual return home by all Jews

A committed Religious Zionist, he was a sought-after adviser on Zionist affairs around the world.

More important, Mr. Obama is simply acceding to Iran’s position on the timing of the lifting of sanctions.

More Articles from Jason Maoz
Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, both outspokenly critical of Netanyahu’s upcoming visit to Congress, were wowed by him in 2011.

Note also the response to the speech by the top Democrats in the House and Senate, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, both of whom have been outspoken in their criticism of Netanyahu’s upcoming visit.

Comptroller DiNapoli celebrates Sukkot with Crown Heights Jewish community leaders at the sukkah of Rabbi Chanina Sperlin of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council.

The New York State comptroller manages the state’s $180.7 billion pension fund, audits the spending practices of all state agencies and local governments, oversees the New York State and Local Retirement System, reviews the New York State and City budgets, and approves billions in State contracts and spending.

While not all criticism of Israel stemmed from anti-Semitism, Podhoretz contends the level of animosity towards Israel rises exponentially the farther left one moved along the spectrum.

When you grow up in a home where your parents went through what my parents went through, you realize that life has to be meaningful. You have to be there for other people.

“It’s a lousy column and a dishonest one,” Halberstam wrote. “So close it. Or you will end up just as shabby as Safire.”

Wye would be seen to have set the groundwork for the creation of a Palestinian state

These are not necessarily the best all-around biographies or studies of the individual presidents listed (though some rank right up there), but the strongest in terms of exploring presidential attitudes and policies toward Israel.

The Clintonan “engagement” liberals remember with such fondness did nothing but embolden Arafat and Hamas and Hizbullah as they witnessed Israel’s only real ally elevate process ahead of policy.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/media-monitor/when-abba-eban-kod-mike-wallace/2009/12/02/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: