University of Michigan professor Juan Cole has written a lot of silly stuff in his opposition to Israel and promotion of anything and everything Islamic. The below piece, in which he goes positively ballistic over the CNN firing of Marc Lamont Hill, was written in Cole's blog, Informed Comment. Hill was fired this week as a CNN commentator after his UN speech in which he defended Palestinian violence.
Cole shows his shotgun intellectual approach as he condemns Israel for the "jackboot" way it allegedly treats Palestinians. He also attacks former President George W Bush for deposing poor little Saddam Hussein. It was all about white supremacy over the Iraqis, you know. He links American supporters of Israel to hatred of "filthy Arabs" in general. To Cole, people who support Israel in America are "bigots". Cole even invokes the Vietnam war, Rambo, and a reference to the "white man's burden". I'm frankly surprised he didn't throw in a few comments about the heroic Honduran migrants. This article reads like an op-ed by some dopey leftist student in a university campus newspaper.
But among all the overblown, histrionic language, Cole falls short on a couple of points that really stand out (aside from calling Hill "a brave voice for freedom and human rights in our time", which is laughable in itself).
We all know that favorite Palestinian phrase that Palestine, "will be free from the river to the sea". It was quoted and invoked by Hill in his speech. It refers to the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, which happen to form the eastern and western borders of Israel respectively. To use that phrase essentially means that there should be one Palestinian nation with no more Israel. For several years, that has been clear.
But now Mr Cole has a new take on that. Pay attention, Dear Reader because this is a groundbreaking discovery on Cole's part. In his article, he shows a map of present-day Israel showing the West Bank and Gaza. Cole actually tries to make the argument that what Mr Hill really meant was that the West Bank (which borders on the Jordan River) and Gaza (which borders on the Mediterranean) would be "free". Everything else that is present-day Israel would be left alone. That, according to Cole's implication, is what Mr Hill really meant. That's what all those little peace-loving rascals from Students for Justice in Palestine really mean when they chant this phrase.
If that isn't ridiculous enough, Cole conveniently skips over another part of Hill's speech that even CNN couldn't live with. Hill, while paying lip service to the principle of non-violence, essentially excused the long history of violent-terrorist acts of violence committed by Palestinian terrorists against innocent civilians, both Israelis and non-Israelis in the name of their cause. He referred to it as "resistance".
This of course includes decades upon decades of horrific acts of violence by Palestinians including the airplane skyjackings of the 1960s, the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre of the entire Israeli team, the Achille Lauro attack in 1985, when an elderly Jewish American man, Leon Klinghoffer, was shot in his wheelchair and thrown overboard by Palestinian "freedom fighters". It includes suicide bombings, bus bombings, kidnappings, and the more recent knife attacks and car attacks against innocent Israeli civilians including the horrific 2011 massacre of the Fogel family on the West Bank, which included the slaughter of children and the murder of a month-old infant in its crib. In response to the latter case, Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza danced in the streets and passed out candy in celebration-as they did on 9-11. I could list so many more examples of the "resistance" of the heroic Palestinian people, but that would require a book. Yet in Cole's language, he refers to it as "Palestinian activism". Cole also says:
"That same dishonest columnist at The Forward managed to reconfigure Hill's activism as violence. The fact is that international law recognizes the right of occupied peoples to mount even violent resistance to occupation militaries. But that isn't what Hill was calling for. And then, any violence is then twisted around as violence toward civilians. And there you have it. Terrorism."
To that, I will stand on my previous paragraph outlining decades of Palestinian terrorism against innocent civilians-both Israeli and non-Israeli and both inside Israel and in other countries. That is not what I call legitimate resistance.
As for Mr Hill, he was an embarrassment to CNN in the first place. Not only is he a friend and defender of Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, who is a vicious anti-semite, Hill, in the same UN speech invoked the false narrative of Ferguson, Missouri and the police shooting of Michael Brown, a thug who attacked a cop and was trying to take his gun away from him. Without Mr Hill, CNN is now (only slightly) a better place today.