web analytics
September 24, 2014 / 29 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



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.


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.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
NY rally against Met Opera's 'Death of Klinghoffer' opera. Sept. 22, 2014.
New York City Site of Huge Rally Against Met’s Klinghoffer Opera
Latest Indepth Stories
William Safire

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

Particularly galling was the complaint by one Jo Anne Simon about Judge Dear’s supposed “mobilizing on behalf of apartheid and his insensitivity to minority communities.”

Whatever one has to say about Iran, it does have clout in the Middle East and the Gulf region and could play a key role in addressing the ISIS threat.

Rav Shlomo Wolbe states that every member of Klal Yisrael is dependent on the entire nation just as a leaf depends on the tree from which it grows.

“Israel must prepare for waves of immigrants from Arab countries, which may endanger its existence”

“I pray that fellow Jews open their eyes & connect themselves to the national side of being a Jew”

The big service ISIS is doing the West right now is checking Iranian power, just as the Sunni rebels inside Syria are keeping the Iranian agent Hezbollah in check, and just as the PLO is keeping Hamas in check, at least to some degree.

Research shows that high doses of marijuana can produce acute psychotic reactions, lower IQ in teens

The current missionary problem in Samaria is still relatively unknown throughout Israel&to most Jews

Rosh Hashanah is a universal, stock-taking, renewal and hopeful holiday,

No mutual clash between parties, it was Jews repeatedly attacked by Arabs, not the other way around.

Israel would love to be in the coalition,but it’s never going to happen, because, in the end, most of America’s allies would walk away if Israel were on board officially.

Why has his death been treated by some as an invitation for an emotional “autopsy”?

SWOT analysis: Assessing resources, internal Strengths&Weaknesses; external Opportunities&Threats.

More Articles from Jason Maoz
William Safire

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

Charles Krauthammer

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.

What really makes one wonder about the affinity felt by certain Jews for Grant was the welcome mat he put out for some of the country’s most pernicious anti-Semites.

With 2013 marking half a century since Kennedy’s fateful limousine ride in Dallas, the current revels are exceeding the revisionist frenzies of years past, with a seemingly endless parade of books, articles and television specials designed to assure us that, despite everything that has come to light about him since his death, JFK was a great president, or at least a very good president who would have been great had his life not been so cruelly cut short.

As someone who for the past fifteen years has been writing a column that largely focuses on the news media, I’ve read what is no doubt an altogether unhealthy number of books on the subject. Most of them were instantly forgettable while some created a brief buzz but failed to pass the test of time. And then there were those select few that merited a permanent spot on the bookshelf.

George W. Bush has been getting some positive media coverage lately, with recent polls showing him at least as popular as his successor, Barack Obama, and a big new book about the Bush presidency by New York Times chief White House correspondent Peter Baker (Days of Fire, Doubleday) portraying Bush as a much more hands-on chief executive than his detractors ever imagined.

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: