Helen Thomas said, "Tell them to get the hell out of Palestine. Remember these people are occupied and it's their land, not German and not Poland. They can go home, Poland, Germany, and America and everywhere else."
Later, Palin did not apologize. She's still mucking things up.
Thomas, however, did apologize. She has now retired. As I wrote, at the time Thomas' comment was read to me, "Helen really fucked up, didn't she." So did Palin.
When it comes to militant Zionist expansionism, if you support the theft of Palestinian land, water, life, dignity or whatever, you are supported by the American political meat grinder. If you lash out at that meat grinder, you yourself often get ground up. That's the way the process works.
I'm not defending Thomas. In a way, she was wrong. So was Palin. Why was Palin wrong?
Simple. Jewish people are not "flocking to Israel." Since Palin made that statement, last November, a lot of Jews have left Israel. Many - and this might surprise both Palin and Thomas - are flocking to - hang on, Sarah - Germany!
[M]ore Jews immigrated to Germany in 2005 than to Israel. Four-fifths of them are Russian Jews who prefer Berlin to Beersheva. And, there are some Israelis among them who have similar preferences. In further evidence of how Israel can actually be bad for Jews, the Israeli government lobbied Germany in 2004 to restrict Jewish immigration. But there are now more Jews in Germany than there were in 1939 before the Holocaust. (True, there are not more than in the Weimar Republic, but that is where the trend line is going despite Israeli attempts to foment discriminatory immigration policies toward Jews.)
Germany, with many immigrants from non-Germanic nations, is changing rapidly, in terms of demography. So is Israel, with very ultra-orthodox families outstripping the often very small families of secular Jews there.
A number of great articles have been written lately about how the exodus of secular Jews from Israel, combined with the growth of the ultra Orthodox segment of the population there, is turning Israel into a nation that is nothing like what American Jews feel comfortable with or comfortable about. Thomas' discomfort, portrayed from the viewpoint of a non-Jew is less imprecatory than that of many liberal Jewish Israelis, quoted in the Israeli press on a day-to-day basis.
Although I've written what might be volumes about how Sarah Palin came to her views on chasing Palestinians out of Palestine (she wants Israel to fill up with Jews, who, when the machinery of the Apocalypse begins, will either convert to Palin's faith immediately, or roast, roast, roast - you betcha!), I've written little about Helen Thomas.
Thomas' Lebanese heritage has been noted by some who have come to her defense. Lebanese have wanted Israelis to leave, on and off, for years. Israelis have killed tens of thousands of Lebanese, devastated the Lebanese economy, fouled the beaches of the entire Lebanese coast with a gratuitous oil spill, and sowed millions of land mines and cluster bombs on Lebanese soil.
In an odd Palin-Thomas juxtaposition, the person who has been - at least in the past - reputed to having written most of Palin's facebook posts, Rebecca Mansour, posted this recently on her twitter page:
Helen Thomas is a total embarrassment to my fellow Lebanese-Americans and to the Maronites. Shame on you, Helen.
about 15 hours ago via web
That's considerably different from the views Mansour shared with me last summer, as I sought to get her to come to dinner with the progressive Alaska bloggers. She expressed anger very much along the same lines as that expressed this weekend by Thomas.
There are hundreds, if not thousands of articles that assert Palestinians should leave Palestine, or Israel, or Samaria, or Judea - whatever they want to call it, and just, well - just fucking go away. When's the last time you heard of somebody having to retire for saying that?
How about Mike Huckabee, for instance:
[T]he Palestinians can create their homeland in many other places in the Middle East, outside Israel."
Come on, Ari Fleisher, when are you going to demand Huckabee be fired?
Not holding my breath.