A top Syrian general and the son of a notoriously anti-Semitic former defense minister reportedly has defected from the Assad regime.
Hungarian Jewish leaders issued a strongly worded protest against a speech by a far-right lawmaker who claimed that Jews had been implicated in a notorious blood libel case in northern Hungary 130 years ago.
The post-shooting debate over political civility is cooling down, but passions are still raging over Sarah Palin’s claim that critics were guilty of perpetuating a “blood libel” against her. Palin’s initial use of the term, in a Jan. 12 video message, drew sharp rebukes from liberal, Jewish groups and even some conservatives. Since then, however, several Jewish notables, including Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach and former New York Mayor Ed Koch have defended Palin’s use of the term. Palin weighed in again Monday during an interview on Fox News -- her first since the Jan. 8 shooting in Tucson of U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) that also left six dead and another 12 wounded. Palin defended her use of the term “blood libel” and said she understands its meaning.
The post-shooting debate over political civility is cooling down, but passions are still raging over Sarah Palin’s claim that critics were guilty of perpetuating a “blood libel” against her.
In her first interview since the Arizona shooting, Sarah Palin defended her use of the term "blood libel" and said she understands its meaning.
It was a well-crafted message preaching unity -- and mined with a “blood libel” that blew it all apart. Sarah Palin’s video message Wednesday, her first substantial commentary since Saturday’s shooting in Tucson that critically injured Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) and killed six others, at first appeared to succeed in reconciling two American precepts that have seemed irreconcilable in recent days: a common purpose and a rough-and-tumble political culture. “Vigorous and spirited public debates during elections are among our most cherished traditions,” said the former Alaska governor and 2008 Republican vice-presidential candidate. “And after the election, we shake hands and get back to work, and often both sides find common ground back in D.C. and elsewhere.”
Sarah Palin's use of the term "blood libel" to decry blaming conservatives for the Arizona shooting has raised the ire of the Jewish community. In a video statement released Wednesday, Palin said that “Acts of monstrous criminality stand on their own. They begin and end with the criminals who commit them. Especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn. That is reprehensible.” The blood libel refers to accusations that began in the Middle Ages that Jews used the blood of murdered Christian children to make matzah for Passover.
Is condemnation of Israel in the current Middle East conflict often tainted with anti-Semitism? The discussion of this sensitive issue has generally focused on anti-Israeli sentiment in Europe. Recently, it was brought close to home by Harvard University President Lawrence Summers, whose Sept. 17 speech expressing concern over the resurgence of anti-Semitism drew national attention, both positive and negative.