“Israel-firsters”, “traitors” and other epithets hurled at Chuck Hagel’s critics by Guardian readers


The empirical probability that reader comments in response to Israel-related content at the Guardian and ‘Comment is Free’ will quickly devolve into anti-Zionist vitriol is as good as the likelihood that the specific epithets used by commenters will be consistent with the Guardian Left narrative.

Both are near certainties.    

While we’ve often posted about reader comments which are more explicitly antisemitic, the following thread effectively illustrates the manner in which the debate over Hagel’s nomination for Defense Secretary has been framed at the Guardian – where a conservative Republican has engendered the sympathy of the Guardian Left due largely to the political orientation of those aligned against him.   

Here is a brief snippet of the conversation below the line of Matt Williams’ Jan. 7 Guardian report, ‘Obama keen on Chuck Hagel nomination despite opposition‘.

The Israeli-Palestinian issue is “never debated” in the US.

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Israel, and American “Israel Firsters” control the US.

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Historically oppressed Jews have now become the oppressors. 

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American Israel-Firsters are, in fact, traitors to their country.

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Then, there was this rebuttal:

smWe hear it all the time below the line, following dog whistles above the line, at ‘Comment is Free’. 

16 comments on ““Israel-firsters”, “traitors” and other epithets hurled at Chuck Hagel’s critics by Guardian readers

  1. With the above in mind, I would actually like to offer a counter-trend:
    Beneath one of Greenwald’s screeds on Hagel, quite a few ripostes raised a very troubling point:
    How could Greenwald cheer for an official, who has made vicious pronouncements against Homosexuals, is a Republican(normally anathema to Greenwald), a practising Christian, and when the runner-up, was an affable, intelligent, highly qualified Woman, Democrat, and liberal?
    This inconsistency(seemingly) was easily espied: Greenwald had reached such a point, that he’s willing to discard all of his “progressive, liberal” credentials, if the opposing, conservative side, is anti-Israel.
    Many people actually saw that!(Quite surprising) Greenwald, by his fulminating replies to those, to put it mildly, was not pleased.
    Finally, a sublime comment re Glenn pitiful harangues:

    Republican gay lobby runs ad opposing man who has a history of expressing anti-gay views.
    Holy s@%# it must be the <Jews what done it!

    That’s Greenwald to a “T”.

    • It’s a bit strange to see an American citizen, Adam Levick, criticize another American citizen, Chuck Hagel, for being a proud American patriot who wants the best for his country, the United States of America.

  2. Great comment. Yeah, Greenwald suggested that liberal groups opposing Hagel were being played like a fiddle by the pro-Israel lobby.

    • Not just any “liberal groups”:
      The Log Cabin Republicans!
      (By the way, many commentators alerted Greenwald that he actually presented no evidence to support that pro-Israel groups were behind the LCR ads — on which, Greenwald was outraged: “I am just asking questions”, he blared. “We deserve to know[who’s “paying” for the ads]!”, he groused. It was like reading Alex Jones amalgamated with David Icke — insane, and oleaginous(minus the Lizards, of course).
      Can you imagine that? The same organisation he, under normal circumstances would champion!(for opposing a nominee who called a political candidate “openly, aggressively Gay”).
      Also, a major foible of Hagel’s(on which, in all other cases, would Glenn harp endlessly):
      Hagel voted twice for the “Patriot Act” — which Greenwald despises with uncommon vengeance.
      Here, he swiftly, and surreptitiously airbrushed any mention of the Senator’s complicity in what He(Greenwald) had always considered a severe breach of civil liberties, all because Hagel, in his twisted mind, is anti-Israel(therefore, overriding any other considerations).
      The ideological bankruptcy of these “progressives” is absolutely stunning. Had it not been channelled to senseless hatred(against Jews/Israel/what-have-you), it could’ve been hilarious, really.

  3. The commenter “SantaMoniker” has been a stalwart anti-anti-Israel poster for some time at CiF. I’m surprised he hasn’t been banned by now.

  4. If those Israelis are so omnipotent, how come they haven’t even managed to force the US to recognise Jerusalem as the capital and move their embassy there?

    Some tail. Some dog.

    • They have not managed to force the US to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, because Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel under international law. You cannot recognize something which does not exist. West Jerusalem is in Israel, but East Jerusalem is not.

  5. Anti-Zionists (let’s be generous) can’t even decide whether Israel is manipulating America or Israel is an American imperialist ‘aircraft carrier’ in the Middle East. Both accusations are regularly trotted out and of course they’re mutually exclusive- but when did facts ever spoil a good prejudice?

    Other regular opposing slurs are:- Dirty Jew, get back to Israel; dirty Jew, get out of Palestine and the Holocaust never happened; Hitler should have finished the job.

    • “Anti-Zionists (let’s be generous) can’t even decide whether Israel is manipulating America or Israel is an American imperialist ‘aircraft carrier’ in the Middle East. Both accusations are regularly trotted out and of course they’re mutually exclusive- but when did facts ever spoil a good prejudice?”

      I’d say they’re integral.

  6. Here’s a CIF headline writer with a sense of humour, putting this headline above McGreal’s latest article:

    What makes Chuck Hagel a true friend of Israel

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/jan/09/chuck-hagel-true-friend-israel

    As if McGreal would really know what constitutes a friend of Israel or have the slightest desire to promote Israel’s best interests.

    Interesting that the tone of the article is uncharacteristically subdued. Could well be that McGreal has been stung by CIFwatch’s spot-on take on his habitual anti-Israel propaganda and is now trying to present himself as a moderate whose only concern is the promotion of peace between Israel and the Arabs.

    That also has a funny side to it.

      • I’d add that it’s hypocrisy. If McGreal has really undergone a transformation and is now a moderate, only concerned with what is best for Israel, he would be ashamed of his past foul propaganda and his lashing out at the Jewish state.

        But evidently he is quite proud of it – to the extent that he linked to his foul 2003 article, in which he revealed that he regards the Israelis as inhuman.

  7. Doesnt Al-Guardian’s jukebox have anyother records in it apart from the usual anti west/Israel/USA/freedoms that we take for granted in 21st century and pro palestine/communist/hamas/iran/islam that Al-Guardian plays over and over to the annoyence of those who prefer to hear something far better

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