The plea from New York Times reporter Jonathan Weisman appeared in the Sunday Review: “Missing in the Fight Against Anti-Semitism.” The online headline: “Anti-Semitism Is Rising. Why Aren’t American Jews Speaking Up?” But Weisman himself has a tangled history with accusations of anti-semitism that make his plea unconvincing.
In an essay adapted from his recent book (((Semitism))) Being Jewish in America in the Age of Trump -- eviscerated by Ben Shapiro at Commentary -- Weisman wrote:
....Yet American Jewish leaders -- the heads of influential, established organizations like the American Jewish Committee and the Jewish Federations of North America -- have been remarkably quiet, focused instead, as they have been for decades, on Israel, not the brewing storm in our own country.
Weisman skipped the controversy over veteran anti-semite Louis Farrakhan and his liberal supporters in both the Congressional Black Caucus and the Women’s March, conveniently locating only controversial right-wingers to criticize.
When the Anti-Defamation League, a century-old institution founded to combat anti-Semitism, released its guide to the “Alt Right and Alt Lite” last year, Ohio’s Republican state treasurer, Josh Mandel, who is Jewish, actually expressed support for two of the people on the list: Mike Cernovich and Jack Posobiec, conservative provocateurs who have found notoriety in the Trump era....
Cernovich circulated a cartoon featuring “George Soros pulling his strings and a disembodied, wrinkled hand labeled ‘Rothschilds’ controlling strings attached to Mr. Soros.” The anti-semitic aspects of Posobeic’s conspiracies, as relayed by Weisman, are non-existent.
The “Rothchilds” conspiracy -- that a family of Jewish financiers secretly controls the world -- is shared across the political spectrum, including most recently D.C. Council member Trayon White, who suggested on Facebook that the Rothchilds were responsible for the snow in D.C. Will the Times cover that?
The ADL’s chief source of appeal for Weisman seems to be that they are a Jewish group that doesn’t talk about Israel.
For drawing attention to these men, the Anti-Defamation League was tarred as a partisan organization by an elected Jewish Republican. I did not see any organized effort to rally around the institution, one of the few major Jewish groups in the United States that is still not predominantly engaged in debate over Israel.
Weisman was impressed with the irresponsible left-wing fundraising outfit, the Southern Poverty Law Center, which had the gall to place brave Muslim apostate Ayaan Hirsi Ali on its “hate list.”
Truth must also be defended, which is what groups like the league and the Southern Poverty Law Center try to do as they expose hate....
Weisman portrayed a Holocaust coming to America.
....Had ordinary Germans and Poles and Ukrainians and Austrians and Frenchmen not played along, had they continued to shop in Jewish establishments and visit Jewish doctors, the Final Solution may, just may, not have been quite so final. To stand up to creeping totalitarianism, we needn’t throw ourselves under the tank treads. We just need to not play the game.
Weisman has himself been the victim of anti-semitism. Yet as deputy Washington editor, he’s also responsible for offensive reporting, and an incredibly offensive chart, targeting Jewish lawmakers who care about Israel.
In September 2015 he proudly claimed responsibility for a New York Times chart labeling Democratic lawmakers against the Obama administration's controversial nuclear deal with Iran as "Jewish?" or not (the "Jewish?" part was removed from the online version after outcry). Under the heading "Democrats against the deal," the lawmakers' names were arranged out of alphabetical order solely to stack all the "Yes" names that qualified as "Jewish?" at the top of the chart.