The Editors ask: McCain: Enemy of Israel or All Out Anti-Semite?:
The media has paid far too little attention to John McCain’s pledge in April to cut off all aid to Israel. Shortly after McCain issued that promise to completely abandon Israel, the McCain camp was forced to backtrack publicly due to pressure from various campaign advisors. But that was for purely cynical, campaign-related reasons, not due to a change of heart. If elected, there is little doubt that McCain will swiftly implement a clean break with Israel.
In fact, it is the ultimate goal of both sides of the GOP ticket. How can I know this? The evidence is pretty clear.
First, Sarah Palin’s church patronizes preachers from a group that the Anti-Defamation League has claimed targets “Jews for conversion with subterfuge and deception.” Speaking of such preachers, one recently had these charming things to say about the people of Israel:
Brickner [the preacher] also described terrorist attacks on Israelis as God’s “judgment of unbelief” of Jews who haven’t embraced Christianity.
“Judgment is very real and we see it played out on the pages of the newspapers and on the television. It’s very real. When [Brickner’s son] was in Jerusalem he was there to witness some of that judgment, some of that conflict, when a Palestinian from East Jerusalem took a bulldozer and went plowing through a score of cars, killing numbers of people. Judgment — you can’t miss it.”
In the past few days, Palin has taken to quoting Westbrook Pegler, a virulent anti-Semite, whose hatred for Jews was so extreme that even the John Birch society found him to be a bit on the extreme side — and it takes a lot to move the anti-Semitism needle with the Birchers.
It’s an odd source because Pegler, who moved further right as his career went on, ended up very, very far out. Frank notes that he talked hopefully of the assassination of Franklin Roosevelt.
He was also known for what Philip Roth described as his “casual distaste for Jews,” which had become so evident by the end that he was bounced from the journal of the John Birch Society in 1964 for alleged anti-semitism. According to his obituary, he’d advanced the theory that American Jews of Eastern European descent were “instinctively sympathetic to Communism, however outwardly respectable they appeared.”
Can we afford to ignore these warning signs any longer? Ask John McCain why he wants to cut Israel off entirely. Ask Sarah Palin why she finds inspiration in the words of unrepentant anti-Semites. Ask McCain and Palin if they, too, have a casual distaste for Jews, or is it something more serious.
The American people deserve answers.
Indeed we do.