Jeffrey Goldberg exposes Andrew Sullivan’s egregious misstatements about Israel

Jeffrey Goldberg catches Andrew Sullivan making egregiously erroneous statements about Israel’s history, this time by publishing at his site a series of maps that purport to show that Israel has no claim to most land she now holds:

The first map in the series of four is most egregious. It suggests that, in 1946, nearly all of the land between the Jordan and the Mediterranean was “Palestinian.” Land designated as “Jewish” in this map constitutes maybe five percent of the total. This map is ridiculous, not only because the term “Palestinian” in 1946 referred, generally speaking, to the Jews who lived in Palestine, not the Arabs, but because there was no Palestine in 1946 (nor was there an Israel.) There was only the British Mandate. Jews lived throughout the territory then occupied by the British, including, by the way, on land that today constitutes the West Bank (though in 1946 Jews did not live in Hebron; they were expelled in 1929, after an Arab massacre of Jewish religious scholars). The intent of this propaganda map is to suggest that an Arab country called “Palestine” existed in 1946 and was driven from existence by Jewish imperialists. Not only was there no such country as “Palestine” in 1946, there has never been a country called Palestine. Before the British conquered Jerusalem, Palestine was a sub-province of the Ottoman Empire. (And after the British left, of course, Jordan and Egypt moved in to occupy Gaza and the West Bank.)

You can read the rest here.

Goldberg wraps up his post by commenting about Sullivan’s shifting Middle Eastern politics:

I dont know why Andrew refuses to admit that Middle East history is complicated. Once, he was rabidly pro-Israel, and refused to acknowledge legitimate Palestinian Arab claims and grievances. Now, he is rabidly pro-Palestinian and refuses to acknowledge Israel’s legitimate claims and grievances. Perhaps it is malevolence that motivates his campaign to demonize the world’s only Jewish country. On the other hand, as our colleague Clive Crook noted earlier this week, “Andrew has so many opinions to ventilate, and so little time to think about them,” that the publication of this absurd map on his blog could simply have been a mistake.

My own sense isn’t that Sullivan isn’t just a “rabidly” pro-Israeli person who is now “rabidly” pro-Palestinian.  Instead, after watching Sullivan in action for the past couple of years, I think he is, simply, globally rabid.  Something made Andrew very, very angry (“mad dog!”) and he hasn’t come down from that yet.  He is therefore allying himself, at home and abroad, with the angriest organizations and ideologies that he can find.  And that’s where he lives.  I only wish that The Atlantic didn’t give him such a prominent bully pulpt for all that venom.

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    Let’s just call it as it is – Sullivan has contracted RABIES.
    The incubation period can last from several days to more than a year after exposure to the virus.
    There are periods of normal behavior that alternate with bizarre behavior. Symptoms can include: hallucinations (imaginary maps) delirium and anxiety.
    ALERT: Reading Sullivan may cause frothing and foaming at the mouth of the reader.

  • ligneus100

    It was the photograph of the pyramid of naked men at Abu Graib that blew all the fuses in Sullivan’s brain,  poor chap was never the same after that.

  • Mike Devx

    On topic for Israel, at least, from Joshuapundit.  Ah, yes, some stories do just make ya feel GREAT!
    The beautiful building pictured above is the historic Hurva Synagogue in the Old City of Jerusalem, which dates from the 1700’s.

    In 1948, it was vandalized and desecrated by the Jordanians, along with 28 other historic synagogues and shrines in the Old City. But it has now been beautifully restored and will be rededicated this Sunday and Monday, the 28th and 29th of Adar.
    And that just
    drives the Palestinians insane:

    Naturally, the Muslims are furious at Jews daring to rebuild a synagogue in a spot that they had lived continuously for well over two thousand years. As I reported a few months ago, what really bugged them was the height of the structure, because in Islamic tradition mosques should always be the tallest buildings in the area. Since the Jewish Quarter is on a hill, the Hurva dome will be higher than the domes on the Al Aqsa mosque and Dome of the Rock.

    So: Israelis restored a beloved religious landmark, at its precise location, to its precise size, and they’re FURIOUS, because the tip of the building stands taller than the tip of their their tallest mosque.  Can’t have that!

    Reports indicate that Barack Obama is beside himself with fury that the Israelis have dared do such a horrifyingly provocative thing like restore a beloved landmark to exactly how it used to look.  “Allahu Akbar!” Obama was heard to screech uncontrollably, when he heard the news.  Insiders say he then groped about his stomach as if he were trying to pull the pin on a grenade, but Robert Gibbs quickly reassured the gathered media that Obama was merely flicking a piece of arugula from his shirt.  “Or maybe it was lint” he added, smirking.


    Mike, thanks for the link.
    I can tell you from experience, any week that has a Tuesday will cause muslims to be furious at Jews, Israelis, Christians, Budhists,  Sikhs and the western world.
    Their steady diet is fed on rumor and anger. When they’re not busy consuming themselves with hatred, they feed off one another [Sunni vs Shi’ite vs  al Qaeda factions]. A 7th century mentality living side by side with  21st century politicians (Hillary) who dare to be insulted that a sovereign nation would build housing in their own country and NYC still has a hole where Tuesdays exist.

  • Mike Devx

    Sadie #4:
    > … and NYC still has a hole where Tuesdays exist.

    Sadie, that is a wonderful expressive phrase.  Really good!

  • Mike Devx

    Just ran across an AP story about Israel, East Jerusalem, and the building of settlements.
    As I read it, I became upset about the one-sidedness of the text.  The article was hosted, so I looked for a more direct AP link, found it.  Then I wrote a comment here, including one short paragraph that offended me.  I reread the paragraph, and thought, “Why, that’s as bad as I remember!  It’s not *so* offensive!
    Then I went back to the original article.  Yep.. the words had been changed!  And both articles had been published under AP.  I’ll take a closer look at the entire text when I have more time. But take a look:
    First, the headline and the two links.  I hope you can get to the first link.
    Headline:   Officials: US wants Israel to cancel building plan

    First link:
    Posted: March 15, 2010 9:56 AM EST
    Second link:
    Posted: By AMY TEIBEL (AP) – 4 hours ago
    (Googles post method description means it was posted at about 4:30 am EST)
    Here’s the paragraph from the first (earlier) link that I found offensive.
    > The compound is home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Islam’s third-holiest shrine. It is Judaism’s holiest site because two biblical Jewish temples once stood there.

    And from the second link:
    > The hilltop complex is home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Israel’s third-holiest shrine. It is Judaism’s holiest site because the biblical Jewish temples once stood there.

    That paragraph stands near the end of the article.  I looked at the remainder of the article beyond that paragraph, and there are more changes.  To wit:

    First link’s remainder of article past that paragraph:

    > Not far from the compound, inside the Old City’s Jewish Quarter, Jewish residents were to rededicate a historic synagogue that had been destroyed twice, most recently in 1948 by the Jordanian army, and was recently rebuilt.
    > Some Palestinians charge that Jewish extremists were planning to use the rededication to try to rebuild the Jewish Third Temple. Similar rumors in the past have brought out Palestinian protesters and sparked violence.
    > The Palestinian Authority’s minister of religious affairs, Jamal Bawatneh, condemned the synagogue rededication as “an attack on the rights of Palestinians.”
    Second link’s remainder of article past that  paragraph:

    > Some Palestinians were warning that the planned rededication Monday of the historic Hurva synagogue in the Old City was a first step by Jewish extremists to try to build a third Jewish Temple on the plateau. Rosenfeld said police had no intelligence of any such plans by extremists.
    > The Hurva synagogue, believed to date back some 2,000 years, was destroyed twice, first in 1721 and again in the 1948 war.
    I imagine the rest of the article also underwent extensive re-writing before it was “republished”.  Does this happen a lot?  I’ve never had a chance before to read two “publishings” of the same article.  Which one is the “official version”?  I’m assuming the second, less-offensive one is official, but actually there’s no way I can tell for sure.
    I’ve archived both versions so I don’t lose them, since I find this fascinating.  I can post the full text of both as separate comments if anyone’s interested.  The more I scan the first link – the one that offended me – and the different texts from the second one, the more outrageous the first link’s word choices become.  It’s so chock-full of slant and bias…

  • Mike Devx

    Good God, here’s a third version of the same article, this one  linked to by Drudge, that appears to be just a condensed version of the second link.   With no indicator that it’s been “summarized” anywhere on the page.
    I had no idea that this is how article publishing went.  Is this constant revisioning, without notice on each new revision, the way it’s always done?
    The third link:

  • Ymarsakar

    Sullivan doesn’t deserve his place on the blogosphere or former conservative credentials. How is someone like that going to point his hypocritical fingers at someone else for not deserving what they have?


    I read the first article and was so angry that I couldn’t bring myself to continue reading anything more from the AP.  You’d think that at least a couple of weeks would pass before they start in on revisionist history. The nip n’ tuck n’ tweak coverage of Jerusalem is no less than libel most 99.9%  of the time. I spent the better part of last night reading several blogs and news(?) articles.
    The crux of the issue, is the denial of the capital, Jerusalem to ‘worldly’ politicians. I’ve already dashed off my semi annual email to the White House regarding my total disgust – this includes the last 6 administrations plus and required actually writing letters prior to email.
    Israel continues to be used as a pawn for the objectives of both western and arab governments.  Of course, this week diverting attention from DC  to Israel, served as a talking point over the weekend. I’ll search out again, another very interesting article and link it in my next post.


    Petraeus betrays us

    Mike..I read everything on this site last night. The article above was very interesting, but all of them offer a closer insight into reality and of course, nothing the AP would report along with their co-Whorts (that’s not a typo). FYI …matzav means situation or condition. There is a good article at the top from the WSJ, too.