web analytics
March 5, 2015 / 14 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Monitor »

William Ayers Is No David Ifshin


Media-Monitor-logo

It’s difficult to say which member of the mainstream media has shamed him- or herself most in terms of pure self-abasement at the feet of the idol Obama. We are, after all, talking about a cast of name-brand reporters, analysts and opinion columnists (are such distinctions even relevant anymore?) probably numbering in the hundreds.

But it would be a real feat to top Time magazine’s Joe Klein, whose political meltdown has been duly noted at Commentary magazine’s Contentions blog (where your dogged scribbler posts on occasion and where this column appeared last week) and elsewhere.

As he proved with Bill Clinton in 1992, when Klein falls in love with a politician he falls really, really hard. But if he was merely besotted with Clinton, he appears lovestruck by Obama, given to lashing out in unseemly rage at anyone who fails to understand the attraction.

Such infatuation is guaranteed to cloud one’s judgment and inspire the kind of writing Klein recently produced for Time’s “Swampland” blog in which, following the lead of Marc Cooper at The Huffington Post and a slew of other left-of-center bloggers, he attempted to make an analogy between Obama’s relationship with William Ayers and John McCain’s relationship with the late David Ifshin, who as an antiwar activist in the Vietnam era had gone to Hanoi and denounced American pilots as war criminals but who later moved to the political center and worked for Walter Mondale and AIPAC.

Ifshin and McCain became unlikely friends in the 1980s, and when Ifshin tragically died of cancer at age 47 in 1996, McCain gave a eulogy that brought many to tears. Klein, who on several occasions had written admiringly of the McCain-Ifshin friendship, is now using it as an illustration of how McCain has allegedly betrayed his old ideals by hypocritically criticizing Obama over his association (predictably, Klein characterizes it as “passing”) with Ayers.

“If you want to know why I – like so many others – held John McCain in such high regard for so long,” Klein writes, “it had a lot to do with David Ifshin. And if you want to know why my opinion of him has plummeted, it has something to do with William Ayers.”

But just how much of a similarity is there between Ifshin – who, it should be noted, never belonged to a group that planted bombs – and Ayers? Here’s how McCain himself spoke about Ifshin two years ago at Columbia University:

He had come once to the capital of the country that held me prisoner, that deprived me and my dearest friends of our most basic rights, and that murdered some of us. He came to that place to denounce our country’s involvement in the war that had led us there. His speech was broadcast into our cells. I thought it a grievous wrong and I still do.A few years later, he had moved temporarily to a kibbutz in Israel. He was there during the Yom Kippur War, when he witnessed the support America provided our beleaguered ally. He saw the huge cargo planes bearing the insignia of the United States Air Force rushing emergency supplies into that country. And he had an epiphany. He had believed America had made a tragic mistake and done a terrible injustice by going to Vietnam, and he still did. But he realized he had let his criticism temporarily blind him to his country’s generosity and the goodness that most Americans possess, and he regretted his failing deeply.

There’s why Klein, in addition to defaming the memory of David Ifshin, is so ludicrously off the mark with his sad comparison. Can anyone – even a hopelessly compromised Obama groupie – say of Ayers that he “realized he had let his criticism temporarily blind him to his country’s generosity and the goodness that most Americans possess, and he regretted his failing deeply”?

In a 1988 column, William F. Buckley quoted Ifshin as saying, “I have agonized every day of my life” about his conduct in Vietnam. Ayers, to be sure, has also agonized over his past, famously telling The New York Times in an interview that ran on Sept. 11, 2001, “I don’t regret setting bombs. I feel we didn’t do enough.”

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 “William Ayers Is No David Ifshin”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
An Arab sheikh hands out flowers in a gesture of brotherhood and good will.
Haifa U Research Confirms, ‘Think Good & It Will Be Good!’
Latest Indepth Stories
Mordechai on the King's horse, being led by Haman

Just like Moses and Aaron, Mordechai decides to ruin the party…

The president has made clear – I can’t state this more firmly – the policy is Iran will not get a nuclear weapon.

Obama has an apparent inability to understand Islam in particular and Mid-East culture in general

Pesach is a Torah-based holiday whose fundamental observances are rooted in Torah law; Purim is a rabbinic holiday whose laws and customs are grounded in the rabbinic tradition.

In honor of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s successful speech before Congress.

Mr. Spock conveys a message with painfully stark relevance to our world today, especially in the context of PM Netanyahu’s speech to Congress.

Obama created the “partisan politics” by asking Dem. party members to avoid Bibi and his address

Enough is enough. The Jewish community has a big tent, but the NIF should have no place in it.

I vote for the right and get left-wing policy. Every. Frigging. Time.

The Holocaust was the latest attempt of Amalek to destroy the special bond that we enjoy with God.

UN inspectors were flabbergasted when Iran allowed them full unfettered access to All nuclear sites

Obama’s real problem is that he knows Netanyahu has more credibility on the Iran issue than he does.

Kristof’s op-ed “The Human Stain” was flawed and wrong; more than anti-Israel, it was anti-Semitic.

“Remember what Amalek did to you on your journey after you left Egypt-how undeterred by fear of G-d”

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/william-ayers-is-no-david-ifshin/2008/10/30/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: