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This is the story of two Hungarian Jews and their diametrically opposed responses to the unimaginable horrors of the Holocaust. The reactions and their consequences for Israel and the Jewish people to this day bear examination.
Over the years, two Jewish journalists - Thomas Friedman and Mike Wallace - have been the subject of particularly intense vituperation in the letters and e-mails received by the Monitor, and both gentlemen have been scrutinized here on several occasions. One of the most popular columns, in terms of reader response, was a July 2002 piece on Wallace - actually, it was part of a series on Wallace the Monitor ran that summer - which looked at the possible genesis of his troubling attitude toward Israel.
Seventy years ago this autumn, the Nazis rounded up my father, grandparents and some 6,000 other Jews, shipping them from southwest Germany to the Gurs internment camp in southern France.
Although Israel's economy stands strong amid a world recession, the political future of the Jewish state has perhaps never looked bleaker. Iran's nuclear threat looms large, Israel's West Bank settlements may soon become part of a Palestinian state, and Jerusalem stands threatened with division.
Though the members of the House Committee on Un-American Activities had a copy of Lucille Ball's signed 1936 communist registration card, they accepted her excuse that she joined the party just to please her grandfather, because her name wasn't Jaffe, Chodorov, Berman or Phillip Loeb. So says Jim Brochu in his one-man show about Samuel Joel "Zero" Mostel, which argues that McCarthyism overlapped to a large extent with anti-Semitism. "She could have called her show I Love Lenin and they would have forgiven her. And they did forgive her," he adds.
‘Tis the season for end-of-year lists, and the invaluable TimesWatch website has issued its annual roundup of dozens of biased or just plain silly quotes from the reporters, columnists and editors who work so hard to ensure that The New York Times maintains its august position as the flagship publication of the Democratic National Committee.
The Media Research Center is out with its annual “Best Notable Quotables” awards for the most biased – or just plain idiotic – statements, observations and questions to come out of the mouths of media people in the 12-month period from December 2006 through November 2007. For the complete list by category, as well as the Quote of the Year, visit www.mrc.org.
As the Monitor reported last month, veteran "60 Minutes" hatchet man Mike Wallace has, after a brief respite, resumed his familiar role as one of the media's most consistent Jewish critics of Israel. During a number of interviews in recent months Wallace seemed to go out of his way to inject an anti-Israel or pro-Palestinian perspective into the conversation, most notably during a May 22 chat with Stephen Hess of the Brookings Institution.