C-SPAN May – June 2010

June 28, 2010 – 8:50 AM


Guest: JUAN ZARATE, Center for Strategic and Intelligence Studies, former deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser for combating terrorism (Bush administration).

Topic: U.S. efforts to counter violent extremism.

Caller: Ed from Deep River, Connecticut.

Caller: “Good morning. First point is, you know you mentioned Joe Lieberman. You know (chuckling) anything that Joe Lieberman has to say about anything Islamic, well, is kind of right out of AIPAC so you can’t give anything that Joe Lieberman says – well, he’s basically an Israeli mole here in the United States. The second thing is – the U.S. efforts to counter violent extremism – well it goes both ways. There’s extreme Islamic and there’s extreme Zionism. The Zionists in Israel are committing crimes every day. Just in the …“

Host (interrupting): “So, you think this is all about Israel?”

Caller: “Oh, no, I don’t think it’s all about Israel. It’s just that if the United States does not – when Obama was elected he said when he was running he said he would have a balanced Middle East policy and play fair on both sides. Then he goes to the AIPAC meeting and he comes out and he has Rahm Emanuel as his chief-of-staff.”

Host: “We’ve got it, Ed. A couple of things here to address. ”

NOTE: The guest rejects the caller’s anti-Israeli, anti-Jewish insinuations, saying “Senator Lieberman is a great patriot” and notes that “I’m not a member of AIPAC [the registered pro-Israel lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee].” The C-SPAN host, however humored the caller and, in eliciting the caller’s pro forma admission, “Oh, no, I don’t think it’s all about Israel,” let the caller complete an anti-Israel, anti-Jewish charge rather than to address the topic at hand.
June 28, 2010 – 8:55 AM


Guest: JUAN ZARATE, Center for Strategic and Intelligence Studies, former deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser for combating terrorism (Bush administration).

Topic: U.S. efforts to counter violent extremism.

Caller: Wilbur from Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Caller: “Thank you for having me on. I have to say to call Israel a democratic state is one of the most preposterous things I’ve ever heard on C-SPAN. You look around the world at every other nation and almost every other nation and their stance upon the state of Israel and the horrible things that the atrocities that they’ve committed in just the last ten or fifteen years. There’s only one country that stands in opposition to the United Nations Security Council – that’s the United States.”

Guest: “I’m not sure what to say there. I agree with what I said. I think Israel is a democratic state and is an important ally. I think one thing that’s important to note, though, looking at the transition between the Bush administration and Obama administration, you have continuity in the notion of a two-state solution. There’s no question that the United States and U.S. policy now stands for a free Palestinian state. I sit on the board of a group called the American Charity for Palestine where we’re trying to help make that reality possible. And so I think, you know, no one is pollyannaish about the problems in the region but we need to be realistic about what our friends are doing, like Israel.”

NOTE: The guest appropriately rejected the caller’s preposterous assertion that Israel is not a democracy. But the call exemplifies the irrational anti-Israel, anti-Jewish allegations repeatedly made by callers to Washington Journal.

June 25, 2010 – 7:03 AM


Topic: Time to get out of Afghanistan?

Caller: Shirley from Olive Branch, Mississippi.

Caller: “War does not benefit anyone except for a few who want to take over all the goods and resources all over the world. We see now that all of them are just too big to handle. Most of us are just suffering and laboring under this war effort. We have given our sons, we have given our time. We don’t educate our children right. Our help is going to pot. We haven’t resources to even take care of the emergencies like this problem in the Gulf. We are just doing it to give Israel what they need and Israel is becoming the first world and we are becoming a third world.”

Host: “Seriously, Shirley, what does Israel have to do with Afghanistan?”

Caller: “Because we are trying to do another Crusade against Islam.”

NOTE: A rarity: A Washington Journal host, in this case Peter Slen, challenges a caller’s anti-Israel non-sequitur. The response – that American aid to Israel somehow furthers an alleged anti-Islamic American “crusade” in Afghanistan – is typical of C-SPAN’s many unhinged conspiracy-obsessed callers who attribute most of America’s problems to U.S. support of Israel. What is unusual, but appropriate, in this case is the moderator’s direct challenge.

June 25, 2010 – 7:32 AM


Topic: Time to get out of Afghanistan?

Caller: Anthony from Costa Mesa, California.

Caller: “My opinion is, we shouldn’t. Let me tell you why. First of all, the Taliban and Al Qaeda have attacked us already in Afghanistan. Wherever else in the Middle East they might be, that region is a platform for terrorism and funding terrorism against the United States and England and whoever else as well. So, I think it is more for us to try to break of this type of activity. Of course, war has drastic consequences and it does cost money. Also, one major point I would like to make is – basically the whole Muslim culture does not like Israel for whatever reason. I believe that the Jewish people, just like any other race and culture, should have their own segregated territory just like everybody else. They deserve their land. And the fact that the United States has boldly invaded Iraq and Afghanistan, it sets the tone in that region that Israel has a big brother and if they mess with Israel they have to mess with big brother.”

NOTE: This is a rare C-SPAN call concerning the Middle East that contains unabashed support for, rather than broad, even anti-Semitic condemnation of Israel.

June 25, 2010 – 7:45 AM


Topic: Time to get out of Afghanistan?

Caller: Dale from Florence, Oregon.

Caller: “Thank you for taking my call. I called in to confuse the issue with some truth. You have people calling in saying it was Israel behind 9/11, and this is why we went into Iraq because of Israel – we went into Afghanistan, because of Israel. Well, I’ m not a fan of Israel, but we did not go into Iraq and Afghanistan for Israel.”

Host: “Should we get out of Afghanistan?”

Caller: “We went into these places because of China. If you Google – we went into it for China. If you Google the oil contracts for Iraq, who got the lion’s share of the contracts?”

Host: “Do you think we should get out of Afghanistan?”

Caller: “It is not a yes or no situation. I think we should get out of Afghanistan with – but then, I think, how could we leave those people at the mercy of the Taliban?”

NOTE: A most unusual Washington Journal caller. Though apparently conspiracy-obsessed, this C-SPAN caller casts blame for greater Middle East conflict on a nation other than Israel.

June 7, 2010 – 7:05 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Jimmy from South Carolina.

Caller: “What I find appalling is there has been absolutely zero discussion about Israel selling nuclear weapons to apartheid South Africa. You all would not discuss issues of substance when It comes to Israel. Why is that? Israel has over 200 nuclear weapons and we are concerned about Iran with zero nuclear weapons. Anytime anything comes up about Israel you all shutdown the conversation – C-SPAN, all of the network news, none of you will discuss anything negative about Israel. Why Is that, sir?”

NOTE: The topic is “Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?” The host responded with silence to caller’s hijacking of the conversation. The host fails to point out the obvious, that caller is incorrect regarding news media reporting and discussion of Israel. Israel is one of the most covered – if not the most over-covered – countries by the mainstream media, including C-SPAN’s Washington Journal. This includes speculation about Israel’s presumed nuclear weapons program.

June 7, 2010 – 7:07 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Veronica from Jefferson, New York.

Caller: “Thank you for taking my call. All right, she might have spoke a little bit out of turn, but why is it every time someone voices any opinion about Israel, such a big deal is made about it. Israel has done things, they have bombed things, they have done things and we just sit back and we say nothing about it and we are always supportive of Israel. Sometimes Israel is not always right. So, I don’ t really think that it’s fair and I believe that is a lot of the reasons why a lot of Pakistan people feel the way they feel about our country. I really believe that they think can do whatever they want over there. In some ways, they are occupiers, whether they want to accept that or not. They won’t leave that West Bank there that they promised to do. So, who is really stirring up the trouble? And did they have to go after a ship bringing medical supplies and food and whatever? They could have checked it and made sure there was no weapons.”

NOTE: Host responded with silence. He doesn’t challenge the caller’s grudging acknowledgment that Thomas “might have spoken a little bit out of turn” when in fact she delivered a classic anti-Semitic, anti-Zionist rant. He fails to correct the caller’s misinformation. The ships aiming to break the blockade of the Hamas terrorist regime controlled Gaza Strip contained no food and only very few medical supplies. The Israelis did indeed board the ships to inspect for weapons but many members of the terrorist-affiliated Turkish “charity” IHH on one of the ships fought the Israelis, using knives, metal bars and guns taken from the first commandos, leading to bloodshed. The Israelis did withdraw from much of the West Bank in accordance with the Oslo agreements in the ‘90s but this resulted in use of that territory as a launching pad for terrorist attacks. Consequently, Israel re-occupied parts of the territory to reestablish security. The host fails to challenge the caller’s apparently naive allusion – to Pakistani public opinion critical of the United States – with information about widespread Islamist indoctrination, not to mention high illiteracy rates in that country, calling into doubt results of public opinion surveys.

June 7, 2010 – 7:11 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Whitney from Detroit, Michigan.

Caller: “It’s unusual to me but not surprising. Anytime anybody says anything, regardless of who it is, about Israel. Watch out! It’s been that way since 1948. I’m not sure who is really running this country because Helen Thomas has been saying things for years. No-one has ever made any comments about it.”

Host: “So you think she’s made similar sorts of statements for years?”

Caller: “Sure, I think she speaks her piece. I know she’s with the press corps but I mean this is all about Israel, it has nothing to do with Helen Thomas. You don’t say anything about them [Israel].”

NOTE: Host facilitated the caller’s misinformed, misleading comments – finally responding with silence. In fact, Israel has been repeatedly and harshly criticized by media celebrities including the late Robert Novak and Pat Buchanan, who’ve had much larger audiences than Helen Thomas in recent years. The host fails to note that the caller disproves her own allegation, that “anybody who says anything … about Israel” is in trouble, since “Helen Thomas has been saying things for years.” The host might have questioned why, since Thomas’s bias was of long-standing and widely known in the press corps, she was not called to account earlier. C-SPAN’s host doesn’t point out the obvious: What finally cost Thomas her job was her blatant hostility to Jews and Israel, caught on camera. The host doesn’t seem to realize that the issue was not free speech or criticism of Israel, but outright bigotry.
June 7, 2010 – 7:12 AM

Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Betty from Cincinnati, Ohio.

Caller: “I definitely feel that Helen Thomas spoke the truth. I think the attorney general says that we’re cowards to talk about race in this country and I think that what Helen said is absolutely true about race in this country. You cannot say anything about a Jew in this country. You cannot say anything about Israel in this country. And I think it is time that everybody in this country start speaking the truth.”

Host: “Would you agree with her expressed sentiments in that clip we showed you that those in Israel should go back to Germany or Poland?”

Caller: “Absolutely. Israel, when Israel was started I think everything that has happened in this country and in this world is because of Israel. We would not have the problems in the Middle East …“

Host: “You said everything in this world or everything in the Middle East?”

Caller: “I think 9/11 happened because of Israel, I think the war in Iraq, Afghanistan, happened because the neocons – the Republican Party. Our Republican Party has been taken over by radical Jews. I think …”

Host: “Your party is the Republican Party you’re talking about, Betty?”

Caller: “Yes. We would not be in Iraq or Afghani stan it if it were not for the radical Jews in the Republican Party.”

NOTE: Incredible. The host, without a word of criticism, facilitated the caller’s conspiracy-obsessed, anti-Jewish, defamatory opinions. His response to the caller’s unhinged demonization of Jews and Israel as responsible for everything bad “that has happened in this country and in this world” is to verify the caller’s political party affiliation. Finally, the host responds with silence to the caller’s last defamatory utterance condemning the “radical Jews” in her political party.

June 7, 2010 – 7:14 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Duane from Portland, Maine.

Caller: “I am Jewish and I have been to Israel and I would like to say that I wish we had a hundred more like Helen Thomas in the Washington press corps and I use that term advisedly. We need people who ask tough questions about our foreign policy right now. What Israel did last week is horrible. What they are doing to the Palestinians in Gaza is terrible. I have been watching C-SPAN since it happens and you did not even featured the story until Helen Thomas says something and then you make and issue what she said. That is ridiculous, nine people were killed, including an American shot four times in the head – and you are becoming as fair and balanced as Fox and we need more like Helen Thomas because there is something wrong with our foreign policy when we are not even allowed to discuss the issue of what an ally did or is doing to it as a people.”

NOTE: Again, the Washington Journal host responded with silence. Caller, who claims to be Jewish, is not challenged on obvious straw-man claim regarding news media failure to report and discuss Israel. Israel is one of the most critically covered – if not the most over-covered – countries by the mainstream media. Regarding C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, as is extensively documented by CAMERA’s C-SPAN Watch, there is no shortage of Israel-related discussions with the vast majority of the numerous Israel-related calls quite defamatory. The caller, like most of Washington Journal’s many Israel bashers, makes emotional, false allegations which the host fails to contest. Facts about the Gaza “aid flotilla” are widely available, including the CAMERA article, The Gaza Flotilla: Falsehoods and Facts.

June 7, 2010 – 7:15 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Wahid from Cleveland, Ohio.

Caller: “I tell you what, I agree with Helen Thomas. They have been over there for sixty years sitting on these people’s neck. I agree with her — they were not in the Middle East. Not right there. She was right”

Host: “If you take that to the logical conclusion, if you ask the Israelis in Israel to go back to Poland and Germany, could other people applied that to people in this country and ask people to go back to the countries they come from?

Caller: “Sure, they should all go back to where we came from, including the white folks who took the country from the Indians and Mexicans. They should go back to where they came from.”

NOTE: Host failed to point out that Jews are a pre-Muslim, pre-Arab indigenous people of eretz Yisrael (the land of Israel). The English word “Jew” derives from the Latin, Judea, the name of the ancient Jewish kingdom that had Jerusalem as its capital. Judea in turn stems from the original Hebrew, Yehuda, land of the Yehudim, the Jews. A knowledgeable host ought to have noted that in re-establishing their sovereign state, the Jews of Israel in fact have “gone home.” He could have taken this “teachable moment” to point out that most Palestinian Arabs, overwhelmingly Sunni Muslims, are closely related to the Sunni Arabs of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon, lands from which many of them migrated in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries to what became British Mandatory Palestine. The Jews are much more like the native American Indians of Palestine than are the Arabs now called Palestinian in terms of historical roots. Why not ask “Wahid from Cleveland, Ohio” if the Palestinians ought to go home, and all “non-native Americans,” including, apparently, Wahid? That would have been a potentially illuminating discussion, of the sort rarely heard on C-SPAN when conversation turns to Israel and the Jews.
June 7, 2010 – 7:17 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Richard from Orlando, Florida.

Caller: “Thank you for taking my call. Yes, Helen Thomas should resign. Let’s not be deceived, Helen Thomas is the iceberg. I think most people in the left- wing media feel exactly the way she does. It is too bad that they don’ t understand the ties that the United States of America has with the state of Israel, both in secular history and Biblical history. I think if people understood that, they would be a little bit more understanding of the plight that the state of Israel is going through. I just hope and pray that the United States continues to be her ally. And I do believe that God will continue to watch over her. Thank you for taking my call.”

NOTE: Host responded with silence to one of the very few Israel-related calls on C-SPAN containing positive remarks about the Jewish state.

June 7, 2010 – 7:19 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Mark from San Diego, California.

Caller: “Yes. I her statements were spot on. They were accurate statements. The people in Israel who run the country are immigrants coming from Europe who were kicked out mainly because of diseases and homosexuality that was spreading in Germany. The Germans wanted them out. Nobody would take them. That is what caused all of the killings. We did not take them.”

Host: “You are saying all of the killings in the Holocaust were people who were homosexuals or unwanted by Germany?”

Caller: “It was caused by the fact that diseases were spreading and there was a panic in the country because of syphilis spreading all over the country and because of the prostitution and homosexuality that was spreading. And this is something that has been going on the throughout hundreds and hundreds of years of use actually – the Jews spreading this.”

NOTE: Host, having drawn out the caller’s most vicious anti-Jewish falsehoods – reminiscent of Nazi Germany’s propaganda machine – responded with silence at the end of the call.

June 7, 2010 – 7:20 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Larry from Grafton, Ohio.

Caller: “I believe that Helen Thomas was exactly right. The Jews in Israel stole the Palestinians’ land and they should give it back. I believe they should go back home. Thank you very much.”

NOTE: One minute after making no rebuttal to a reiteration of the classic Nazi claim that Jews promoted sexual deviance and disease, ‘Washington Journal’ moderator Scanlon sits mute, allowing the caller’s patently obvious land-theft falsehood to pass unchallenged. A minimally informed host would have pointed out that the name “Jew” derives from Judea, the kingdom that, along with the northern kingdom of Israel, formed the core of the biblical land of Israel. He might have mentioned that Jerusalem, the capital of modern state of Israel also was the capital of two ancient Jewish states and has held a central place in the Jewish religion for 3,000 years. He might have responded that, in establishing the British Mandate for Palestine after World War I, the League of Nations reaffirmed the legitimacy of the Jewish people re-establishing their state in their ancient homeland. Had he done so, light would have been shed on the caller’s anti-Jewish, anti-Israeli claim. Host could have mentioned the fact that land has been legally purchased from Arabs and could have noted that sizeable Jewish communities have continuously existed in Israel for centuries and — in fact, since the mid 1800s, Jews have constituted the majority of the population of the city of Jerusalem. The caller wants the Jews to return home. This has already happened. The Jews have returned to their ancient homeland of Israel.

June 7, 2010 – 7:26 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Russell from Evans, Georgia.

Caller: “Okay, great. Every time the issue of Israel comes up, the true bigots and racists in this country come out in droves. The anti-Semitic comments by these callers this morning are incredible. But getting back to Helen Thomas, she is just incredibly biased and naive and she is hateful. Anybody who knows world history knows that this mythical place of Palestine was eliminated from existence in the 14th century. The Palestinians are the ones who should go home. They should go on to Jordan and leave the Israelis alone. It is their land, where they lived. They have a modern society and they should be left to their own devices. But getting back to my main point, the left is so anti-Semitic in this country it’s just amazing to me. And Helen Thomas, she should be forced to resign.”

Host: “You are saying that the left is so anti-Semitic but clearly people like Lanny Davis, now – coming out hard against her comments.”

Caller: “Yes, and he should, because Lanny Davis, if I’ m not mistaken, is Jewish himself. But all the anti-Israeli calls we are receiving, and that we always receive from C-SPAN, always emanate from the left. Not from the right, which is the common misconception and stereotype of Republicans. We are the ones that are truly inclusive. It is the left that is so hateful and spiteful of Israel in general. And I find it shocking. I am about to be 50 years old and all of the anti- Semitic stuff, always from the left-hand side of the aisle. I understand, about 75 percent of the American Jewish population is Democratic. It is the Democratic Party that is so vitriolic towards them. I just don’t understand it.”

NOTE: Host misses opportunity to pursue newsworthy issue: changing ideological stances in the United States toward Israel, with formerly supportive liberal wing of Democratic Party and formerly isolationist tendency within Republic Party being replaced by anti-Israel, pro-Arab left and pro-Israel, more internationalist-minded Republicans. The example of Lanny Davis, former lawyer for President Bill Clinton, offered a starting point but moderator failed to follow through.

June 7, 2010 – 7:30 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Joshua from Norwich, Connecticut.

Caller: “I really don’t have a problem with what Helen Thomas said. It is her opinion, she is allowed to say it. My big thing is, I am for America.”

Host: “Tie that in. What do you mean by that?”

Caller: “What I think is, over here, she just wanted to say what she thought and now people are jumping on her. We can’t just jump on people for saying what they think. Because there would be no discussion of anything. And I think that Israel’ s interests are not in line with America’s interests over all. In some certain areas, but I think that Israel has an overarching influence, more than it is a relative – not even say population, but the amount of people of Jewish philosophy – ideology, Zionist ideology. Because not all people of the Jewish faith are Zionists and even in the Jewish state. I would like to direct people to buchanan dot org – a lot of very good information of people care to read about it.”

NOTE: Host responded with silence to the caller’s questionable assertions regarding Israel and allowed the promotion of an anti-Israel, anti-Jewish Website.

June 7, 2010 – 7:31 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Rodney from Austin, Texas.

Caller: “First of all, what’s wrong with Helen Thomas, as the previous caller stated, exercising her First Amendment in this country? This is what America is all about. By the way, we give billions and billions of dollars of aid to Israel every year. Helen Thomas is one of those taxpayers. Why are they trying to shut her down? As a previous caller pointed out, Israel’s overriding interest – they have a group in this country called AIPAC. We caught several of those people spying on what was supposed to be their number one ally…”

Host: “We caught people from AIPAC spying? They actually caught people from that lobby spying?”

Caller: “You have not read about it in the Washington Post – you have not read about this – actual spies?”

NOTE: Host failed to distinguish between First Amendment free expression and the anti-Jewish bigotry and profound ignorance demonstrated by Thomas as a White House correspondent. Even more, moderator appears inexcusably ignorant himself of recent federal courts rulings that force the Justice Department to drop charges against two former AIPAC staffers, not of spying but of transferring without authorization classified information to third parties.

June 7, 2010 – 7:44 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Paul from Orlando, Florida.

Caller: “… I think it’s interesting this morning – some of the comments about Israel – Israel’s right to the land that they sit on right now. Now if you look at the Middle East, look at all the Islamic states and Israel is a small area which if you believe that God gave that land to the people of Israel – as many of us do – what is the problem with people being able to immigrate from other parts of the world to some place where they can feel safe?”

NOTE: Host responded with silence to one of C-SPAN’s comparatively few calls supportive of Israel.

June 7, 2010 – 7:45 AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Sarah from Alexandria, Virginia.

Caller: “No, I don’ t think, as the person who was just speaking said, that God gave the land to the children of Israel, I don’ t think God deals in real estate and does not give away tracks of places for the rest of eternity for one race. You had a caller that said that Judea or Palestine lost its state in 1400. Israel lost out 2000 years ago. The other point, Lieberman, a member of the Knesset said Palestinians should leave and go and live in Jordan. He is someone not even a member of the press but in the government itself expressing – advocating ethnic cleansing.”

NOTE: Host, responding with characteristic silence, could have corrected the caller and enlightened the audience on fundamental points of Western culture, rooted as it is in the Hebrew Bible, which is the basis of both Judaism and Christianity. In fact, ‘God deals in real estate,’ or did one time. The Bible indeed provides an eternal promise of the land to the children of Israel. This promise – the only land grant in the entire Bible – is repeated several times including: Genesis chapters 15 and 26; Exodus 23 ; Numbers 34, Ezekiel 47. References to the land of Israel (as a land populated by Jews) are also made in the New Testament, for example in Matthew 2, Luke 21, Romans 9. Likewise in Islamic scripture, the Quran, Sura 21, verses 71 and 81, echoing the Torah, note that God – “Allah” – promised “the blessed land” to “Banu Isra’il,” the children of Israel.

The caller also misrepresents the position of Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, which was that Israelis – Arabs or Jews – not willing to pledge allegiance to the state should not retain citizenship. He was not “advocating ethnic cleansing.” As for the caller’s reference to Jordan, the host might have pointed out that it was originally part of British Mandatory Palestine, but in the 1920s London barred Jews from settling there and established an Arab state on three-quarters of Palestine. The remaining mandatory lands, west of the Jordan River, were to remain open to “close Jewish settlement.” The C-SPAN moderator’s apparent unfamiliarity with these basic facts or unwillingness to make them clear when appropriate, suggests Arab-Israeli subjects are beyond him. Left unsaid here is that Palestinian Arab society as a whole does indeed support ethnic cleansing of Jews. But neither host nor caller seem to recognize or to be concerned with such a fact.

June 7, 2010 – 7:47AM


Topic: Should Helen Thomas resign from the press corps?

Caller: Wayne from Westminster, Maryland.

Caller: “I would say, first of all, Helen Thomas is just speaking truth. Second of all, remember the USS Liberty in 1967, Israel attacked a U.S. ship in international waters same as they did last week to a ship in international waters. They killed 32 U.S. sailors in the process. Israel learned well the lessons of the end Nazi assassins and they have improved upon those lessons. They turned Gaza Strip into the Warsaw Ghetto.”

NOTE: Host responded with silence to the caller’s falsehoods. Official Israeli and U.S. inquiries determined that the attack on the USS Liberty during the ’67 Six-Day War resulted from miscommunication between the ship and its higher command, between Israel and the United States, misidentification of the Liberty as an Egyptian warship, and general confusion in an active war zone. The caller’s connection of the Liberty with Turkish Mavi Marmara, a blockade runner under control of the pro-Hamas IHH movement, is blatant intellectual dishonesty. And the attempt to paint today’s Israel’s as Nazis and the Gaza Strip as the Warsaw Ghetto is obscene, if transparent, anti-Semitism. CAMERA has reported on the facts regarding the Liberty attack.

June 3, 2010 – 7:06 AM


Topic: What issue tops your list of concerns?

Caller: John from Conestoga, Pennsylvania.

Caller: “It’s Israel. And I think the ramifications of what Israel is doing and getting the United States involved or – you know – complicit in this whole deal – has more global repercussions than the oil spill. I would say they are 1 and 1A. There has been very little coverage of the flotilla, an accurate coverage for sure. All we are hearing on mainstream media is Israel’ s viewpoint. And I just think it’s a standard boilerplate bunch of lies, basically. So, from a global standpoint and the United States getting involved in a third world war, it is Israel. And we just sit back, the Congress approves anything Israel does, and we are making a big, big mistake.”

NOTE: Host reads aloud from the morning’s New York Times’ lead story – which deals with Israel. She fails to highlight for viewers the caller’s anti-Israel polemics. She asks for no evidence to support the caller’s hysterical allegation that Israel is getting the United States “involved in a third world war.” She does not challenge the caller’s ridiculous contention that mainstream media reported only Israel’s viewpoint about its raid on the Mavi Marmara, controlled by the terrorist-affiliated Turkish IHH “charity” and lead ship in a blockade running convoy headed to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. In fact, the standard media characterization of the propaganda voyage organized by several anti-Israel groups was as a “humanitarian aid flotilla.” Once more, a “Washington Journal” host abdicated duties of a moderator and functioned simply as an “open microphone” for anti-Israel invective.

June 3, 2010 – 7:27 AM


Topic: What issue tops your list of concerns?

Caller: Steve from Long Island, New York.

Caller criticizes the media – including C-SPAN – for inadequately covering important issues like “New Orleans” then touches on coverage of Israel: “But there is one subject that it seems to me, if you guys have board meetings, that you are just afraid to touch. You will not put on the subject of Israel. I understand that people call up and say anti-Semitic things, but there is something between anti-Semitism and support of Israel. There are legitimate issues and discussions about Israel without people being anti-Semitic.”

NOTE: Host’s comments are limited to defending C-SPAN from criticism, “We [at C-SPAN editorial meetings] never say, let’s not cover an issue.” While the caller’s observation, as a general premise, that criticism of Israel is not necessarily anti-Semitic – is appropriate, his observation that C-SPAN discussions of Israel are prohibited is completely wrong. A reading of CAMERA’s C-SPAN Watch daily monitoring of Washington Journal shows clearly that a large majority of such callers are not merely critical of Israel – they utter anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist charges based on wild distortions or outright falsehoods about Israel.

June 3, 2010 – 7:44 AM


Topic: What issue tops your list of concerns?

Caller: Maurice from Montville, New Jersey.

Caller: “Thank you. Good morning. My concern is that I have been following this pro blem in Gaza and what Israel and the Palestinians and the whole world and how much time is spent on it. This latest episode involves responsibility in my opinion. I have heard a little bit about the United Nations and the condemnation of Israel. There is blame on all sides. In particular, in this case, I was very upset about Turkey allowing these activists to board these ships to try to run the blockade. Israel is a democracy. It wants to help their people and the Palestinians, very concerned about security, and smuggling of arms. I think some of the outrage should be also placed on Turkey allowing these ships to be boarded by these activists and there should be some mechanism to be able to inspect shipments of arms to the terrorists and to the people who refuse to have a democracy. That is really all I have to say and I appreciate the opportunity.”

NOTE: Host fails to comment on caller’s balanced remarks. On Washington Journal all callers and all opinions are equal apparently – the frequent voices from the anti-Jewish and anti-Israeli fringe and the occasional thoughtful caller in touch with reality. That being the case, what’s the point of C-SPAN’s hosts?
June 1, 2010 – 8:17 AM


Guest: WENDY SHERMAN, former State Department policy coordinator for North Korea, member of Albright Group.

Topic: What’s next for North Korea?

Caller: Maureen from Nashville, Tennessee.

Caller: “Ms. Sherman I’ve seen you before on C-SPAN and have always appreciated you. I hope you’ll let a true investigation by the United Nations occur on the situation that happened outside the Gaza Strip and I’m just so sorry that we, the United States, are really an accomplice to letting the open air prison situation occur that is the Gaza Strip. It makes me so sad that we let this happen. They had a true democratic election in the Gaza and because we didn’t like the outcome we went along with really the starvation of those people. It just makes me so sad that we’re an accomplice to that. Thank you so much.”

Host: “Thank you Maureen.”

Guest: “Well, thank you for your comments caller. I don’t think there’s anyone in the world, including the President of the United States, who isn’t heartbroken by the humanitarian needs of the people in Gaza. It is the most densely populated piece of land on the face of the Earth. People in Gaza have suffered for quite a long time. Humanitarian aid is allowed in but not to the extent that many of us believe that it needs to be. The President in his statement last night said that he wants to continue to work to make sure that the people of Gaza get their needs met and I hope that we sort out this situation very quickly and as I said, I hope that there is an intensity about moving forward with the Middle East peace process because no interim solution is going to solve this problem until the whole problem is solved.”

NOTE: This call was clearly off-topic. Nevertheless, host Steve Scully facilitated an error-filled attack on U.S. support for Israel, which lawfully blockades the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip to prohibit importation of weaponry and dual civilian-combatant use materials. Neither host nor guest rebuts caller’s false charge of starvation in the Gaza Strip, though recent news reports describe abundance in local groceries. Neither rejects the claim that the area is “an open air prison” – thousands of Gazan travel to Israel for medical treatment every year, more traverse the Rafah crossing with Egypt when Egyptian-Hamas relations permit. Neither mentions that Israel’s general closure of the crossings it controls is the consequence of a terror war against Israel by Hamas and its allies including the firing of thousands of rockets and mortars at Israeli civilians and Hamas’ continued refusal to disavow anti-Israel violence. Neither points out that since the 1993 Israeli-Palestinian Declaration of Principles, which was intended to lead to a negotiated settlement, the Palestinian Arabs have been the recipients of approximately $10 billion in foreign assistance – little of which was spent in building the local economy. Neither points out that there has been no humanitarian aid crisis in Gaza, with Israel permitting thousands of trucks to deliver tens of thousands of tons of aid quarterly.

When the guest mistakenly asserts that the Gaza Strip is the world’s most densely-populated place, the host says nothing. In fact, the Gaza Strip is far less densely populated than each of several places, including: Monaco, Singapore, Gibraltar, Hong Kong, and Macau (many times more densely populated than the Gaza Strip). The density of the Gaza Strip, at approximately 10,800 persons per square mile, roughly approximates that of the District of Columbia at about 9,700 persons per square mile.

Caller, host and guest illustrate much of what is wrong with C-SPAN’s Washington Journal approach to Israel-related matters.

May 24, 2010 – 8:41 AM


Guest: ABDULLAH ABDULLAH, 2009 Afghanistan presidential candidate.

Topic: Afghanistan politics.

Caller: Logan from Sterling, Virginia.

Caller: ”Hi there, thanks for taking my call. I have a question. I was wondering – two questions – is it still illegal to evangelize Christ in your country? And 2) What is your personal view on whether Israel has the right to – you know …?” (Caller’s statement is not completed).

Guest: “On the first one, to evangelize in our country, yes, that’s not legal in our country. In terms of Israel, that last part of your question I missed. Perhaps for a state – you mentioned? Yes, of course, we believe that the solution in the Middle East is in two states with full rights, a Palestinian one and an Israeli one, living in peace with one another, with east Jerusalem as part of a Palestinian state. That, I think, is more or less the consensus of the world view; that’s my view as well.”

NOTE: It’s not clear whether the caller self-terminated or was cut off – and if a cut-off took place, whether it was due to the caller asking if the guest believes that Israel has a right to exist.

May 24, 2010 – 8:58 AM


Guest: ABDULLAH ABDULLAH, 2009 Afghanistan presidential candidate.

Topic: Afghanistan politics.

Caller: Will from Mishiwaka, Indiana.

Caller: “I am 22 years old right now. I went to high school for a year and spent about four different years and (indistinct) in Saudi Arabia.(indistinct) and as a sophomore. I went to school at the U.S. embassy there and went to school amongst Palestinians and Iraqis (indistinct). What I am concerned about is between Israel and Palestine – the two state solution. I know that amongst the Palestinian people, it is a sense that what was once their land and it’s being occupied. It seems like – I am sorry (indistinct). What do you see, in terms of getting a real two state solution, and how does that affect the broader Middle Eastern security? And I know you will probably be a part of future elections.”

Guest: “In terms of a two state solution, how realistic it is, the problems today, we are aware. Of course, the occupation, in the eyes of the Palestinians, is the main problem. No matter how problematic that may seem, if you are want to have a peaceful Middle East, it cannot happen without reaching that stage. It is for the leadership in the Middle East to look at it in that way. I do not see an end to the conflict in the Middle East without an acceptance of the two state solution. So, while the conditions today are as they are, at the same time, that’s the only way out.”

NOTE: Host, exhibiting a lack of curiosity typical among Washington Journal moderators when callers claim personal knowledge of Arab-Islamic societies, missed an opportunity to question the caller as to the circumstances of his schooling in Saudi Arabia and what he learned about Arab society.

May 23, 2010 – 8:28 AM


Guest: ALEX ISENSTADT, Washington reporter for Politico.

Topic: 2010 midterm politics.

Caller: Judy from Hyattsville, Maryland.

Caller: “Hi, how are you this morning? Bob Ehrlich of course and Michael Steele was his lieutenant governor (in Maryland). I would like to see him win again because O’Malley as the Democrats do, have run us into a hole. But I think both Republicans and Democrats do that. The gentleman from New York, Democrat, was very, very good. He was absolutely right on. I think what we’re seeing is just an arrogance of power in Washington that, quite frankly, I’m 66 and I’ve never seen it like this. Both Republicans and Democrats look at us as though we are stupid. They take $205 million of our money and give it to Israel and 45 billion to Greece and we’re giving money all over the world yet we have nothing for our own people in Nashville and the Gulf Coast [and caller continues on at length to disparage the incumbent politicians as liars and unrepresentative of the electorate].”

NOTE: The caller singles out Israel (along with Greece) in venting her displeasure about the United States “giving money all over the world.” But neither guest nor host inform the audience that the caller is quite mistaken: there is no U.S. economic aid to Israel, and military aid to Israel, at $3 billion, is much less than one percent of total U.S. military spending. The $205 million is an emergency appropriation being supplied to strengthen Israel’s missile defense system against serious threats from Islamic terrorists and rogue nations. C-SPAN hosts and guests never find it peculiar that callers, when complaining about U.S. foreign aid, invariably single out aid to Israel. Moreover, hosts and guests fail to inform the audience that this aid constitutes only a small fraction of the amount provided to other nations in Asia and Africa, including $12 billion per year to Arab countries.

• May 21, 2010 – 7:23 AM


Topic: Rand Paul and civil rights.

Caller: Isar from Lanham, Maryland.

Caller: “Yes sir, I think Rand Paul is a threat, not because he wants to liberate all 300 million people living in America, black and white, from the Federal Reserve, from those who want America to continue to be subservient to the interests of Israel instead of the interests of the 300 million blacks and whites living here – and he’s a threat to this establishment. So, just like the U.S. is still in Iraq because Blackwater is able to plant bombs and – blank it – blame it on Shia and Sunnis – to divide and conquer – so, these are kind of like the market bombs that the media is throwing at us with this racism. He is not racist. If you want to liberate yourself from the Zionists that control America and control and own the Federal Reserve, you have to stay above this. You have to know that the media is …“

SLEN (interrupting): “Isar, where are you from originally?”

Caller: “It doesn’t matter, I am a human. I’d love my Gentile human race to be liberated from the central bankers …”

SLEN (interrupting): “Alright, we’ve got the point.”

NOTE: Host Peter Slen belatedly interrupts and questions the polemical, conspiracy-spinning caller but not before the caller manages to damn U.S. policy, absurdly claiming that contractor Blackwater is perpetrating the suicide bombings in Iraq (rather than Islamic terrorists). Likewise, the caller absurdly charges that America is controlled by Israel and Zionists (read Jews) who “own the Federal Reserve” system and – that this and the alleged Blackwater conspiracy are masked by the media’s charges of racism. The caller seems to have something to hide in refusing to answer host’s question as to his country of origin. Mr. Slen at long last finally “[G]ot the point” and terminated the misinformation-filled diatribe.

May 21, 2010 – 9:56 AM


Guest: JONATHAN ALTER, author and correspondent.

Topic: “The Promise: President Obama, Year One” (Mr. Alter’s book).

Caller: Larry from Chicago, Illinois.

Caller: (Asked two questions, the first concerning Michelle Obama, the second concerning President Obama’s advisor, Rahm Emanuel). “For the author, on Rahm Emanuel, did Rahm Emanuel serve in the Israeli army and not the American army?”

ALTER: (Discussed the Michelle Obama question prior to replying to the Rahm Emanuel question). “On the second question, as far as Rahm Emanuel, he did not serve in the Israeli army but what he did do it during the Gulf War in 1991 – remember, he was too young for Vietnam, too young for the American draft – he went on over as a volunteer with an organization trying to – remember, Israel was being bombed by scud missiles sent by Saddam Hussein and it was a very, very frightening time in Israel and in the United States – we were in the middle of the Gulf War, and he went over and with a civilian units he worked on repairing Israel Israeli trucks so they could get supplies to civilians more easily. He did that on a volunteer basis for a few weeks in 1991. But it was not the IDF, Israeli Defense Force.”

NOTE: The guest appropriately handled the question concerning Mr. Emanuel’s short stint as a civilian volunteer in Israel during a crisis period for Israelis due to an unprovoked missile attack from a neighboring Arab country.

May 20, 2010 – 8:53 AM


Guest: Congressman ERIC CANTOR (R-Virginia), minority whip of House of Representatives.

Topic: House Republican agenda.

Caller: Marcy from Haymarket, Virginia. (The caller has a heavy foreign accent).

Caller: “Good morning. I have a question for Mr. Cantor. I was thinking, you said you care about the future of this country, deficit, economy, and no jobs. I have (indistinct) – I see children in this country every day go to sleep with no food. I was wondering, can you become a model (indistinct) in Congress? Can you tell children in this country who need more attention than we pay billions of dollars to countries (indistinct) Israel. I see you sometimes, you talk about Israel a lot but I hope you can give the children of this country and find more food and find jobs for our people for people like me. I have not had a job for a long time. Can you give me the answer please?”

CANTOR: “Sure. No question, there shouldn’t be a higher priority tha n making sure the children of our country have food. There are programs that work right now that do try and provide proper nutrition to the children of America. I certainly agree with that. We can always and should always look to increase efficiencies in that program, reduce administrative bureaucracies, so that we can get the relief needed – the food that is so necessary, obviously, to the children’s well-being and nutrition.”

“Beyond that, you mentioned my desire to continue to fund efforts and support efforts that support our allies. One of the most straight forward obligations of this Congress, as set forth in our Constitution, is that the Federal Government must provide for the defense and security of our citizens. And when you speak about Israel – Israel is in the front lines in a very difficult region of the world, fighting the same fight that we are fighting in this country. It’s a fight against the spread of radical Islam and the terrorism that has resulted from its spread, and frankly, the support of the terrorist organizations by state sponsors. We have to make sure we are safe. We’ve been reminded of this on Christmas day when we had the attempt at bombing from an airliner flying into Detroit. We saw a couple of weeks ago in Times Square, another attempt by these terrorist organizations and the spread of radical Islam, to come in and wreak havoc and kill thousands of Americans. We are at war. We’ve got to remember that. So, I think, the investment of our efforts, providing troops – the men and women in uniform – for us – or if it’s standing by our allies whose security is synonymous with our own – is something that should be a priority.”

NOTE: Yet another C-SPAN caller seems to believe erroneously that the small (relatively) amount of American aid to Israel (it’s always Israel that’s singled out by these callers from among the several nations receiving American aid) somehow deprives the public of needed funds – as in this caller’s mind, depriving children here of food. The guest appropriately explains why the United States supports Israel.

May 15, 2010 – 7:19 AM


Topic: President Obama: System failed (Gulf of Mexico oil spill) and it failed badly.

Caller: Derek from Wallkill, New York.

Caller: “Good morning, Robb. How’s it going? I think it’s shame they’re letting that oil pour in there like that. I don’t think they should ever have been drilling in the ocean in the first place. But a lot of people have been talking about votes and what’s going to happen in November. But people have to realize, ever since Kennedy was assassinated, Kennedy and his brother, that ended people – the president really trying to help the American people. Our country is under control by Zionists, and that’s the only logical explanation, and that’s based on fact. All you have to do is Google why JFK was killed, and you’ll find the answers to why our problems are like this. Thank you very much.”

NOTE: Host fails to cut-off the diatribe as soon as caller moves from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill to the Kennedy assassinations. Once more C-SPAN loans itself to the lunatic fringe. Once more a “Washington Journal” host sits tight while a caller blames the Jews – “Zionists” an obvious euphemism in this case – for America’s problems. C-SPAN either doesn’t recognize or won’t cut off classic anti-Semitic ranting. Substitute Catholics or Muslims, blacks or Hispanics for Zionists and it’s impossible to imagine Washington Journal not interrupting such a call.
May 15, 2010 – 8:19 AM


Guest: JENNIFER DLOUHY, Hearst News Service correspondent.

Topic: Government role in regulating offshore drilling.

Caller: Justin from Jensen Beach Florida.

Caller: “I would like to first make a request, and then I’ve got a question for the guest. But the request is I listen mainly on Saturdays – on the week ends – and it’s about the only time I get to listen to this great program. And it seems lately, especially last weekend and so far this morning I hear quite a bit of anti-Semitic comments. And people trying to draw parallels to the so-called Zionists or the Jews. And it really bothers me that not once have I ever heard you condemn that kind of speech on this radio program. I mean, you yourself, sir, as a minority, should be calling that out and condemning that immediately but I’ve never heard you say it. If someone called up and started throwing the “N” Word around I’m sure you would take offense to it and condemn that. Please, I think in the future, we need to kind of tone some of that down. But my question also, while I’m on the phone, is how come nobody’s mentioned the three and a half million dollars that this president took from BP, for one? And I believe, and I don’t know if the guest here would know much about this, but I heard there were some exemptions actually signed by our great president a few weeks before this whole thing happened and BP was part of that. How come we never hear about any of that? What went on with that situation?”

NOTE: Neither host nor guest reply to the caller’s legitimate comment/question concerning C-SPAN’s airing of frequent calls singling out Jews for defamatory condemnation on Washington Journal.
May 15, 2010 – 8:22 AM


Guest: JENNIFER DLOUHY, Hearst News Service correspondent.

Topic: Government role in regulating offshore drilling.

Caller: Jane from San Francisco, California.

Caller (Referring to the previous call from Justin): “Hi. Being one of the people that has listened to C-SPAN almost from the beginning, I have to say that anytime anything like that is brought up, the person is immediately cut off. I’ve seen that. So I …”

HARLESTON (interrupting): “You know, Jane, let me address that real quick – and Justin if you’re still listening. We’re trying to operate an open forum for discussion here at C-SPAN and sometimes people get through and they say things and we try to cut them off. We’re doing the best we can and we just try to ask people who are concerned about this or sensitive to this to be indulgent and we ask the people who feel that way – try not to make those statements on our air – use some other form of communications to vent your opinions. Jane, go ahead.”

Caller: “That’s what I’ve seen. Hello.”

Host: “Jane, do you want to talk about the oil spill?”

Caller: “I do. But if I have just a second to mention that on the (indistinct), I’m concerned that the Moslems, in their religion, do not permit any people to be gay or active in their countries because …”

HARLESTON (interrupting): “We need to get back to off-shore drilling or move on to another caller.”

(Caller discusses the off-shore oil drilling controversy).

NOTE: Replying to the this caller’s refutation of the previous caller’s (Justin) charge that C-SPAN hosts fail to repudiate anti-Semitic, anti-Israel calls – host Harleston belatedly responds. He defends Washington Journal’s generally feckless handling of frequent anti-Semitic, anti-Israel calls. This unconvincing defense indicates naïveté. A quick cure would be intelligent use of a brief time-del ay system that is the norm for call-in shows. Host is quick to quash caller’s criticism of Islamic societies.
May 15, 2010 – 9:04 AM


Guest: NILE GARDNER, Heritage Foundation.

Topic: U.S.-British relations.

Caller: Rene from Cape Coral, Florida.

Caller: “Yes. I notice Mr. Gardner appears to have an English accent. Is he English or American? Also, he’s talking about how the Obama administration is bashing Israel. Perhaps he would like to have the English contribute 5 billion pounds a year to Israel as we do.”

HARLESTON: “Thanks for your call Rene we’re starting to run out of time.”

Guest: “What was your question – yes, I am English. With regard to Israel, Britain also supports the life of Israel in the Middle East and Britain is a strong supporter of Israel and Israel is faced with a tremendous threat from an array of dangerous regimes supported by rogue states such as Iran and Syria. It is in both the British and U.S. national interest to make sure that Israel is defended against its enemies – and that the only successful democracy in the region – together, of course, now with Iraq – is able to be defended and in the face of a mounting threat from Iran, which has threatened to wipe Israel off of the map. The U.S. and Britain have a joint, shared interest in the defense of Israel against an array of very brutal enemies.”

NOTE: The guest appropriately comments on the importance of supporting Israel. The caller’s bias is evident in questioning the guest on his nationality and singling out Israel as an implied financial burden to the United States. However, an informed host might have noted that the caller overstates U.S. aid to Israel by more than twice the real figure – $3 billion, or about 2 billion pounds – and that, in any case, American aid to Israel is a very small percentage of the Defense budget. In addition, no mention is made of the reciprocal advantages to the United States of the aid to Israel. This matter is discussed at length in the C-SPAN Watch entry for March 4, 2010 (7:04 AM).

May 15, 2010 – 9:09 AM


Guest: NILE GARDNER, Heritage Foundation.

Topic: U.S.-British relations.

Caller: David from McLean, Virginia.

Caller: (Condemns the Heritage Foundation for being a right-leaning organization and then brings up Israel.) “As far as your foreign policy is concerned, particularly your comments on Israel, just recently, there was 250 million U.S. dollars given to Israel for missile defense, as well as, the only country in the entire world where a foreign person can serve in that army – the Israeli army. U.S. citizens can serve there. No other country permits this. My question is, are you Jewish and what is your view on this?”

Host: “What difference does it make, David?”

NOTE: After the end of the caller’s diatribe, obviously based on anti-Jewish animosity, the host heads off any possible response from the guest.

May 14, 2010 – 8:02 AM


Guest: MICHAEL SHEEHAN, former New York City Police Department deputy commissioner.

Topic: Preventing domestic terrorism.

Caller: Sarah from Riverside, Ohio.

Caller: “Yes. I want to thank Mr. Campbell for all that he did to protect our country and Americans. I want to ask, on a past program you had the former head of the CIA bin Laden unit, Michael Scheuer, on. I’ve read a lot about what former CIA Middle East analyst Ray McGovern said, as well as the 9/11 commission on what took place. We hear over and over again, and I do not want to make any excuses for people using violence to deal with problems, but I’ve also gone on line and listened to the fellow who blew up our CIA agents in Afghanistan. He actually did a videotape of why he was doing this. So, we hear over and over again from Scheuer, from Ray McGovern, from the 9/11 Commission, from some of the people who have blown themselves up – that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one of the root causes for the anger that many of these people feel, as well as our military bases on their land – which I’m sure we’d feel the same way if there was a foreign government in our country with military bases.”

Guest: “I think we have to be careful about the root-causes argument. There are many, many motivations for what drives a terrorist to act against us. They have been doing this against us for a long time. This group of terrorists really started operating against us in 1993 when it blew up the World Trade Center. Also, in 1993, they killed a few guys outside of CIA headquarters. They blew up our embassies in 1998, the USS Cole in 2000, 9/11 – a long history of action here. And most of these terrorists combine a couple of things – political issues – that include Israel – U.S.-Israel relationship, the relations between us and some of the more moderate Arab states that they consider corrupt and un-Islamic. Of course, our forces overseas often inflame their political problems. They have a religious justification, which is really a twisting of Islam for their own justification and use of violence. And aside from that, like in this case with Faisal Shahzad you’d see a personal issue the person may have, whether it’s financial issues, sexual issues, problems with identity, and you find those things – normally three things come together: political anger, religious justification, some personal issue that drives them into terrorism. And they buy into this narrative that bin Laden uses. He hits all the hot button issues whether it’s the Israeli issues, U.S. forces in Iraq, and Pakistan. He’ll move those issues around. So, I would be reluctant to think there’s only one thing that we could do that will appease this group of people that could really determine what they do. ”

NOTE: The guest argues that the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is not a root cause of Muslim anger against the United States, but rather one of many issues manipulated by Islamic extremists such as Osama bin Laden to recruit followers and justify terrorist violence against noncombatants. His pertinent response is especially noteworthy since C-SPAN hosts virtually never reply to anti-Jewish, anti-Israeli calls in such a manner.

May 14, 2010 – 8: 21 AM


Guest: MICHAEL SHEEHAN, former New York City Police Department deputy commissioner.

Topic: Preventing domestic terrorism.

Caller: Bill from St. Louis, Missouri (anti-Jewish, anti-Israel frequent caller Bill/Darrell from Missouri).

Caller: “Yes, Mr. Sheehan. How’re you doin’ today? I’d like you to comment since you’re a terrorist expert, comment on all the nano-thermite that was found at the World Trade Center in the dust? And if you want to get at the terrorist issue, why don’t you deal with the apartheid state of Israel?

Guest: “Well, I’ m not familiar with the dust at the World Trade Center. But I know there were a lot of questions and conspiracies about what happened there. I think it’s pretty much what it was. A couple of airplanes driving into some big buildings that unfortunately created a perfect storm of heat and fire and it collapse d.”

Host: “Are you surprised at the level of suspicion about 9/11?”

Guest: “No, I’m not. It is typical. We typically – not only Americans but people abroad –almost always put conspiracy theory on to something. The murder of President Kennedy – there are many, many Americans who think the Warren Commission was absolutely wrong. It’s been looked at over and over and over again. I believe they probably got it right. Do I have questions about Oswald and Ruby? Of course. It’s hard to explain about how it all happened. At the end of the day, I happen to believe it what it is. But many, many Americans cannot accept that. 9/11, other big events – It just seems to be a natural phenomenon, both in the U.S. And certainly abroad. Even worse abroad where conspiracy theories are much more worse and deep.”

NOTE: This 30-day-between-calls violator called most recently as Darrell from St. Charles, Missouri (April 19, 7:08 AM), and Bill from St. Louis, Missouri (April 17, 7:46 AM). The main purpose for a Bill/Darrell call is to bash Israel and the Jewish people, hence the 9/11 conspiracy-spinning and slandering Israel as an “apartheid state.” Since the guest rejected only the general phenomenon of conspiracy theory explanations (often anti-Semitic) for historic events, the host should have debunked the “nano-thermite” reference and not let the “apartheid Israel” reference pass without noting that Israel is the most egalitarian state, including equal rights for racial and religious minorities, in the Middle East.
May 14, 2010 – 8:25 AM


Guest: MICHAEL SHEEHAN, former New York City Police Department deputy commissioner.

Topic: Preventing domestic terrorism.

Caller: Mark from Arlington, Massachusetts.

Caller: “Yes. Thank you for taking my call. Are you there? I just wanted to make sure. Yes. Just got a couple of questions. This is not a conspiracy. This is fact. This is in the 9/11 commission and on Fox News. This has all been recorded. I’ m a little concerned on C-SPAN when people do ask about 9/11, which is still an event, that people are concerned about this and it is quickly cut off as a conspiracy. So, just two questions for the gentleman. Three buildings were destroyed that day, not just the Twin Towers, the North Tower, South Tower, and obviously, building number 7 went down at about 6 o’clock in the evening, eight hours after the planes crashed in. “

Host: “So, Mark, What is your question?”

Caller: “Well, I’m getting to it. My question is simply this. The owner of the building, Silverstein, said the 9/11 Commission wasn’t quite sure. Also, that day, a place called Urban Moving Systems, which were later found out to be Mossad agents from Israel, had filmed the event in advance, and were then later arrested.”

Host: “That’ s all fact, Mark?”

Caller: “Yes, definitely, you can look it up in the 9/11 Commission. You can look up on Fox News. You can look it up all over the place. This gentleman knows about it.”

Guest: “I’ m not aware of the Mossad filming on 9/11, but I am aware of many conspiracies that believe that Israelis blew up 9/11 and I reject all those categorically as well as conspiracies that the U.S. Government was somehow involved. By the way, there were more than three buildings that went down. The World Trade Center – an 18-acre hole down there – it’s a horrific spot – I used to work right down there – drove by there every day. Building seven had a huge fuel storage area built into it because it had some of the air-conditioning for the whole center. When the two Towers went down, it ignited a fire across the street in Trade Center building seven. It went up in flames. I know Larry Silverstein very well. He knows what happened in seven. By the way, it was rebuilt quickly and is up again and functioning now.”

NOTE: Caller is allowed to state allegations as fact and spin conspiracy fantasies aimed at defaming Israel. The guest appropriately rejects the caller’s baseless anti-Israel charge, noting similar baseless allegation are made about the U.S. government.
May 13, 2010 – 8:14 AM


Guest: Congressman MIKE COFFMAN (R-Colorado).

Topic: Defense policy.

Caller: John from Norfolk, Virginia (frequent anti-Israel caller James/Jamie/Jim/Tim/Tyrone/etc. trying to disguise his voice).

Caller: “Thank you for takin’ my call. I’d just like to say, Congressman, you’re in the delegation with the pro-Israel lobby, AIPAC. We were attacked on 9/11 because of our support for Israel. Go to neoconzionistthreat dot com and look at what motivated 9/11 hijackers on the top right there. Can you tell us about your affiliation with AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobby, sir?”

Host: “Alright, we’ll leave it there. Congressman Coffman, do you care to answer that?”

Guest: “I believe it is important to support Israel. I do believe that the United States in relationship with Israel has little or nothing to do with radical Islam. If you look at the Osama bin Laden and his attack on the United States, that really originated with the United States involvement in Saudi Arabia. When you look at the issue with Afghanistan, that was really Osama bin Laden and his ability to utilize Afghanistan as a staging area for the attack against the United States. If you look at radical Islam, it is more about a political ideology than a religion, and does not have much to do about the Arab-Israeli question. Certainly, resolving the Arab- Israeli dispute would be of help, but I don’t think it’s the most critical element in resolving the problems with radical Islam.”

NOTE: The guest appropriately rejects the propagandistic charges of the frequent anti-Israel caller. The host typically permits this caller’s essentially scripted, formulaic rant delivered in his characteristic rapid delivery, before belatedly cutting him off. The caller yet again violates C-SPAN’s 30-days-between-calls rule, having been aired on April 23 (as Ronald from Austin, Texas), April 17 (as Danny from Seattle, Washington), April 14 (as Tim from Atlanta, Georgia), April 14 (as Jamie from Houston, Texas).

May 13, 2010 – 8:20 AM


Topic: What would you cut from the Defense budget?

Caller: Melvin from Raleigh, North Carolina.

Caller: “I would cut about 600 to 800 military bases. I would cut out the 3 or 4 or 5 or a dozen wars that we’ve got going, covertly and overtly. I would cut out about 400 of the 600 or 700 generals and admirals. I would cut military aid to Israel which is enormous. I would also cut out all these Zionist Congressmen that appear on your program. All they do is lie when they talk about Israel.”

NOTE: Host Brawner is characteristically silent during a caller’s unhinged rant. Each unfounded statement by the caller – 600 to 800 bases, 3 or 4 or 5 dozens wars, cutting two-thirds of all U.S. flag officers, “enormous military aid to Israel,” which at $3 billion annually is less than half of one percent of total U.S. military spending, and “cut out all these Zionist [read pro-Israel and/or Jewish] congressmen” allegedly lying about Israel was an obvious cut-off point.

&#14 9; May 11, 2010 – 7:09 AM


Topic: Should a (Supreme Court) nominee discuss specific issues and cases?

Caller: Patricia from Rockport, Massachusetts.

Host: “We are talking about how much should be revealed by the nominee when he or she appears before the Senate. Rockport, Massachusetts, Patricia, go ahead.”

Caller: “Yes, I’d like to know if the nominee is a Zionist. She may be – probably is. And if so, I think that really disqualifies her. We have way too many Zionists in the government now. The Supreme Court ought to be free of extreme religious views.”

NOTE: Host Echevarria is silent and fails to cut-off the caller’s off-topic, anti-Jewish rant. The host is either unwilling or incapable of challenging the biased caller who apparently conflates Zionism with Judaism and falsely states that Zionism is an “extreme religious view.” An informed host should have taken this opportunity to note two basic points: One, that Zionism, the modern expression of historic Jewish nationalism, is not religious or extreme (there are Jewish Zionists, Christian Zionists, agnostic Zionists and so on) but rather the belief that the Jews are both a religious community and a people with unbroken, 3,000-year-old roots in Jerusalem and the land of Israel. And two, that Louis Brandeis was, in fact, the official leader of the American Zionist movement before becoming a highly-regarded Supreme Court justice. His being a Jew and a Zionist may have been helpful to his service on the court or irrelevant, but they certainly were not detrimental. The same is likely to be true of nominee Elena Kagan, whose Jewish background has been noted, but whose Zionist commitment, if any, has not been publicized. The host also should have challenged the caller as to whether she regarded the high court’s two current Jewish justices, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer, as “Zionists,” “Jews,” or both, and if such identification should disqualify them. Instead, he allows a short but obviously anti-Semitic, anti-Zionist call to pass without comment.
May 11, 2010 – 7:27 AM


Topic: Should a (Supreme Court) nominee discuss specific issues and cases?

Caller: Gilbert from Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Caller: “Thank you. In my opinion, the courts are so stacked. We need another black person on there because Clarence Thomas is everything but that. But, speaking about Kagan, one of the callers earlier mentioned the fact that the courts are stacked with Zionists. We don’t have any Protestants on there and the only time we will get bi-partisanship is whenever we have a Zionist on the court or coming up for the court. That’s the only time.”

NOTE: Host Echevarria is characteristically silent in the face of two bigoted slurs – one anti-black, one anti-Jewish. Why didn’t the host cut off the caller immediately after the slander that “Clarence Thomas is everything but [black]?” Why didn’t he challenge the obvious anti-Semitism of “the courts are stacked with Zionists” – “Zionist” plainly used as a code word for Jews and with prejudicial implication? Here again, a Washington Journal host permits C-SPAN to serve as a bigot’s megaphone.
May 10, 2010 – 7:10 AM


Topic: President Obama to pick Kagan for Supreme Court.

Caller: Rankin from Clearwater, Florida.

Caller: “Well, I think, maybe, I mean, she was obviously, she was overturned 8-1 in her opinion or 8-nothing. That speaks a little bit about her. But I think she was at Harvard for fund-raising. I mean, she turned around the Law School around more or less. She raised $500 million or something like that.”

Host: “Where did you find that figure?”

Caller: “I don’t know. I just went to the Internet to look her up and that was one of the things. But what discourages me most about her is ‘indefinite detention.’ I think we borrowed almost everything about terrorism from the Israelis already. We don’t need to continue that.”

Host: “All right. On defining [possibly meant to say “confining”] combatants, the New York Times says that Ms. Kagan agreed with the questioner in her Senate confirmation hearing for Solicitor General that people suspected of helping to finance al Qaeda should be subject to battlefield law – indefinite detention without a trial and even if they are not captured in a battle zone.”

NOTE: Host Brawner fails to question caller’s source for an unsubstantiated sweeping claim that “we borrowed almost everything about terrorism from the Israelis already” yet does question caller’s source concerning the nominee’s fund-raising for Harvard. To caller’s ridiculous response, “I don’t know. I just went to the Internet to look her up and that was one of the things” Ms. Brawner merely says “all right” and moves on. This is superficial and inconsistent at best.
May 10, 2010 – 7:32 AM


Topic: President Obama to pick Kagan for Supreme Court.

Caller: Patricia from Dayton, Ohio.

Caller (This caller spoke at length concerning the likely Supreme Court nominee and then suddenly changed subject): “I want to ask a request of C-SPAN to do some more programs on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict because there is a blackout in our media which we are all well aware of. Also, on Iran, to have professor Juan Cole for some informed comment on and also Flynt Leverett who had been in the Bush administration and quit. He has a Web site called (indistinct). Hopefully you will do some more programs on these topics.”

NOTE: Host Brawner fails to comment on this attempted hijacking of the topic. Caller should have been confronted on the ludicrous claim that “there is a blackout [on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict] in our media which we are all well aware of.” The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is, year in and year out, one of the more heavily covered foreign news stories. Ms. Brawner’s failure to correct such a fundamental distortion is a glaring failure for a public affairs program like Washington Journal.
May 9, 2010 – 7:43 AM


Topic: Karzai – The hard work ahead in Afghanistan.

Caller: Todd from Severn, Maryland.

Caller: “Yes, hello. This is for Democrats? I want to comment on the Afghanistan topic.”

Host: “By all means, go ahead.”

Caller: “Okay – I want to – first of all I don’t believe we should be over there, and I don’t believe there is really too much hope for the situation there. We are over there mainly for the protection of Israel and for that oil. There are almost 200 countries in this world, but yet we are the main ones concerned about that area. There is something wrong there. We follow the King James version of the Bible and that is the reason why we’re over there. Someone ought to do a biography on King James to find out just what kind of man that person was.”

NOTE: Host Robb Harleston fails to challenge, inte rrupt or comment on what is obviously an odd-ball call. The caller’s patently false allegation, “We are there (in that area) mainly for the protection of Israel and for that oil,” is allowed to stand unquestioned. The United States struck Afghanistan after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks by al-Qaeda, based in that country and protected by its Taliban rulers. Afghanistan is not a source of petroleum and Osama bin Laden’s motivations for the 9/11 strikes had little or nothing to do with Israel. A comprehensive explanation of the motivation for the 9/11 attacks is contained in the C-SPAN Watch entry for March 23, 2010 (9:56 AM), which includes reference to the official 9/11 Commission report. As to the caller’s strange references to King James and the King James version of the Bible, one would imagine that an alert host would at least reply, “How so?”

May 8, 2010 – 9:29 AM


Guest: NICHOLAS SCHMIDLE, New America Foundation fellow.

Topic: Taliban in Pakistan.

Caller: Jean from Wilmington, Delaware.

Caller: “Hi, good morning. I wanted to follow through with a question I never got to ask when you were at the University of Delaware – which was a really interesting session. An earlier person – a professor who came there told the audience that he was from Maryland and he thought that the main reason everybody was doing these attacks – one of the biggest reasons – was always the Israel-Palestine issue. When I was in Pakistan myself, I kept asking this question and people never seemed to know about that question; it never came up. So, I’m just wondering. This kid – this was obviously not his position. So, I’m wondering, myself, having been to Pakistan and also hanging with a lot of Pakistani here, and seeing how they are they pressed for this Kerry-Luger bill and are also disenchanted with the restrictions – if this is like a political ploy – you know, using all these different tactics for their own political means?”

Guest: “Jean, Great question. There are a couple of different parts to the question we could discuss. First of all, thank you for coming out to the University of Delaware, a couple of months ago. The Israel-Palestine – like the crisis in Kashmir, the fundamental grievance that Jihadis and – constantly – militants – and frankly Muslims – all across the Muslim world – will be able to leverage as an indication that the United States is cooperating with non-Islamic powers to sort of – in some conspiracy against the Muslim world. I do not know that you can solve Israel-Palestine tomorrow, like some people think and all of a sudden the Jihadis go away. I think it would be a huge step, in the same way that I think resolving the crisis in Kashmir would be a huge step. The grievances have piled up on top of one-another. There was a video – or audio recording from Osama bin Laden released last year – that sounded very desperate. He was no longer talking – Israel-Palestine used to be the base grievance that he would discuss. Then all of a sudden, he was talking about climate change, corruption on Wall Street. The grievances have expanded, so long as the recruitment is down a little bit.”

NOTE: Caller observes that when he was in Pakistan, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict “never came up,” contrary to assertions often made by chronic anti-Israel callers to C-SPAN that U.S. support for Israel is the “cause” of anti-American Islamic terrorism like that of Sept. 11, 2001. Guest, while noting al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden tends to invoke whatever pretexts he finds expedient, fails to put the Arab-Israeli confrontation or Indian-Pakistani clash over Kashmir in perspective: neither are primary causes of Islamic extremism’s hostility to the West. That hostility, as Islamist ideology long has made clear, stems from fear that modernity, with its secular societies and politics, women’s equality and equal rights for minorities including religious minorities, and separation of mosque and state, threatens fundamentalist Islam. C-SPAN’s host sits silently.
May 8, 2010 – 9:53 AM


Guest: NICHOLAS SCHMIDLE, New America Foundation fellow.

Topic: Taliban in Pakistan.

Caller: Rick from Cherokee, North Carolina.

Caller: “I’d like to know why we can always discuss Muslim terrorism, but whenever we have something like Al-Khattab Web sites (run by an American Jew who converted to Islam and espouses radical Islamism) end up to be Jewish – or Adam Pearlman who is really Adam Gedahn – we can’t freely discuss this. We pretend we have a free media here and it is really disgusting. That is all I have to say.”

SCHMIDLE: “The caller raises a good point in that radicalization, religious fundamentalism, it is not the sole propriety of Islam. There are Christian fundamentalist groups. I mean, if you look at the rise enrollment and membership in domestic militias have increased markedly ever since Obama took power. Jewish fundamentalism is there. Religious fundamentalism is not the sole domain of Islam, however, we are talking about this mainly because of the frequency and the numbers and the fact that Jewish fundamentalists did not try to blow up Times Square last week. There is a qualitative difference between the two – uh – there is a quantitative difference between the two – and maybe it is not so much qualitative.”

NOTE: Guest usefully observes that Islamic fundamentalism is a topic for frequent discuss because it, not Christian or Jewish fundamentalism, is frequently invoked by terrorists as the motivation for their attacks. However, rather than emphasize this key point with examples such as the Ft. Hood massacre last November, the recent increase in deadly intra-Muslim terrorist attacks in Iraq, and continued issuance of death threats against cartoonists in Europe and the United States who would dare to draw imaginary or satirical likeness of Mohammed, the guest deflects his own point with vague generalities about domestic U.S. militias and virtually non-existent violent Jewish fundamentalism. Neither guest nor host note the obvious: The anti-Jewish caller’s attempt to invent a threatening Jewish fundamentalism based on the radicalism of a Jewish convert to Islamic fundamentalism. The example actually reinforces the point the caller would deny, that it is radicalization to Islamic fundamentalism that is newsworthy.

May 3, 2010 – 9:45 AM


Guest: RUSTY BARBER, U.S. Institute of peace.

Topic: Iraq update.

Caller: Tim from Oshkosh, Wisconsin (anti-Israel, anti-Jewish frequent caller James/Jamie/Jim/Tim/Tyrone/etc. trying to disguise his voice).

Caller: “Hello. Good morning. Thank you for taking my call. Have you read the Transparent Cabal book by Doctor Stephen Sagosky that talks about Jewish neocons and Paul Wolfowitz?”

SCANLAN: “ Tim, Tim, I’ m going to cut you off there. You can call in and express your opinion on any topic but when you start chastising people based on their race, their religion, their beliefs – an individual or a group of people – we are going to move on.”

NOTE: Host Bill Scanlan appropriately cut-off the frequent caller as he started his famil iar anti-Jewish rant. Host also could have cut-off the caller for violating the 30-days-between-calls rule, having been aired on May 2 (as Ron from Lake Jackson, Texas), April 23 (as Ronald from Austin, Texas), April 17 (as Danny from Seattle, Washington), April 14 (as Tim from Atlanta, Georgia), April 14 (as Jamie from Houston, Texas), April 6 (as Tim from Clarksburg, West Virginia), April 5 (as James from Fort Worth, Texas), April 4 (as Jim from Alexandria, Virginia).

May 3, 2010 – 9:57 AM


Guest: RUSTY BARBER, U.S. Institute of peace.

Topic: Iraq update.

Caller: Mina from Mission Hills, California (anti-Israel frequent caller Sherry/Susan/Joanne/Margaret/Carol/Janet/Sally/Peggy/etc.).

SCANLAN: “This is Mina in Mission Hills, California on our Republican line. Hi there.”

The call: [man’s voice] “Desert Fox – okay?” [woman’s voice (Mina)] “Uh-huh.”

SCANLAN: “Go ahead. Mina are you there? Go ahead.”

Caller: [woman’s voice:] “Yes. Hello. I just want to say that in 1998 it was AIPAC that pushed us into the war for Iraq. Also…”

SCANLAN: “Mina, Mina. You call this program with regularity under different names from different states. We would appreciate it if you would call us just once every 30 days. Use your real name and your real state and you’d be welcome to call then”.

NOTE: Host Bill Scanlan appropriately cut-off the frequent caller (possibly her first such experience). A man’s voice is distinctly heard initially on the caller’s line using an apparent code (“Desert Fox – okay?”) signaling for her to enter the conversation. This caller was heard on April 17 (as Joanne from Los Angeles, California), April 11 (as Sherry from California), April 5 (as Susan from Santa Clarita, California), April 5 (as Aida from Sparks, Nevada).

May 2, 2010 – 9:03 AM


Guests: (1) Bernard Finel, American Security Project. (2) James Carafano, Heritage Foundation.

Topic: Defense spending.

Caller: Ron from Lake Jackson, Texas (anti-Israel frequent caller James/Jamie/Jim/Tim/Tyrone/etc. trying to disguise his voice).

Caller: “Yeah, I’ m in Ron Paul’s district. Congressman Ron Paul. Why don’t we talk about how Ron Paul says that we’ re spending all this money on wars going broke and these wars are not for America. They’re for Israel. You can go to america-hijacked dot com. The neocons pushed us into Iraq and …”

Host: “We will leave it there.”

CARAFANO: “But again, it raises a great point which is: Defense is not what is draining the American economy. Defense is less than one-fifth of the federal budget. Defense spending includes all of the cost for war and every thing else we’re doing. The argument that somehow defense is bankrupting America is simply not true.”

NOTE: Host Harleston appropriately cut-off the caller as he began his familiar anti-Israel rant and guest Carafano appropriately demolished caller’s false argument concerning “going broke.” This caller frequently violates C-SPAN’s 30-days-between-calls rule having been aired on April 23 (as Ronald from Austin, Texas), April 17 (as Danny from Seattle, Washington), April 14 (as Tim from Atlanta, Georgia), April 14 (as Jamie from Houston, Texas), April 6 (as Tim from Clarksburg, West Virginia), April 5 (as James from Fort Worth, Texas), April 4 (as Jim from Alexandria, Virginia), April 3 (as James from Los Angeles, California).

May 1, 2010 – 7:25 AM


Topic: Energy extraction: How much risk to take?

Caller: Susan from Pennsylvania.

Caller: “Good morning Pedro. Thanks for this call. I have four points to make and I will make them succinctly. The Post article that you read said that the United States still needs oil. Iran has oil and Iran is willing to sell it to us. A rapprochement with Iran is in the best interests of the United States. General Petraeus said about two weeks ago at an event that was on C-SPAN that he was talking to Iraqis who said, ‘well, you just came here for our oil’. He said, ‘I could have bought 10 years worth of your oil for we have spent here in one year.’ So, a military policy to protect oil is foolish. Third point, AIPAC agent Keith Weissman appeared in a conference in Washington state last December. He said that in 1995, AIPAC drove through the first set of sanctions against Iran and they moved against U.S. Interests. They caused U.S. corporation CONOCO to have to back out of a contract that was very lucrative, that Robin Wright said would have employed hundreds of thousands of Americans. But AIPAC wanted to insert a wedge between the U.S. And Iran. So, rapprochement with Iran is in the best interests of the United States. Thank you.”

NOTE: Host Pedro Echevarria fails to comment on the caller’s lengthy monologue and also fails to question the false and contradictory allegations. The caller’s information sources should have been questioned. A well-informed host would have noted some if not all the following: a) Iran’s Islamic regime has been conducting low-level warfare against the United States since it overthrew the Shah in 1979 and seized the U.S. embassy hostages, through its backing of the Hezbollah bombings of the U.S. embassy and Marine Corps barracks in Lebanon in the 1980s to arming anti-American forces in Iraq and Afghanistan today; b) The American Israel Public Affairs Committee support sanctions against Iran, the biggest state sponsor of international terrorism then and now, to support U.S. policy favoring pro-Western and democratic governments in the Middle East; c) AIPAC lobbied for anti-Iran sanctions, but Congress exercised its own judgment and overwhelmingly approved them; and d) “employed hundreds of thousands of Americans” seems like a sweeping exaggeration.

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