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Author Topic: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???  (Read 1434 times)

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Offline PhaiaTopic starter

Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« on: June 05, 2010, 12:05:39 AM »
I often listen to talk radio while driving. Mostly for the amusement factor since the radical right can be darn funny at times. Yet today something caught my attention that made me wonder what the heck people on the news and Washington are thinking!

Helen Thomas is one of the iconic news reporters for the white house and has often been the one lone voice for various causes. Becuase of this she is also well respected and listened to by many 'liberals'.

basically what happened is during an interview at the white house...


**WH press corps’ Helen Thomas tells Jews to leave Israel and ‘go home to Poland and Germany’**

http://news.gather.com/viewArticle.action?articleId=281474978279517

Now I have to wonder from the lack of responce from "liberals' and all the responce from the right. Does Helen Thomas Actually represent what the ultra liberals believe??


I tend to be moderate, middle of the road type and honestly I hope the white house takes a stand on her comments.

Phaia
« Last Edit: June 05, 2010, 12:47:04 AM by Phaia »

Offline Vekseid

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2010, 01:05:47 AM »
Just days after Biden asked what the problem was with the Israeli execution of American citizens. I doubt the White House will be unified in its tolerance of this, even with her apology.

Antisemitism still runs pretty deep, even though it's hidden. Jews were blamed for the financial crisis that led to the Great Depression, and some of the racial movements on the 'right' in this country blame the Jews for this one.

This isn't a liberal versus conservative issue. This is anything but a slow news year, and we're not even halfway done with it.

Offline Xenophile

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2010, 04:48:30 AM »
I do need to point out that there are plenty of reasons to criticize the state of Israel, and even jews to some extent, without it having to be a case of anti-Semitism. Some criticism isn't warranted, but some is. A few days ago when soldiers boarded a humanitarian relief ship on international waters which resulted in the deaths of 9 people does warrant some form of criticism.

Though, saying that "the Jews need to move back to Poland" is hardly a proper entry in a modern and civil discussion. At best, this woman was just using her freedom of saying stupid things in the heat of passion (and without thinking before she's talking), but at worst, she could actually mean it. It is like you said Vekseid. Antisemetism does still exist.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2010, 04:49:55 AM by Xenophile »

Offline mystictiger

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2010, 10:49:36 AM »
I wouldn't have necessarily said it was anti-semetic to say that the Israeli state ethnically cleansed an area that they have no claim over. I would say that it was tactless, rude, and over simplistic.

I would feel ... somewhat agreived if the Italians decided that they wanted to take back large parts of the UK simply because the Romans used to own it.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2010, 10:52:30 AM »
No, I for one support Israel and after the Holocaust they are not going to go anywhereso everyone better figure that one out fast. And I studied the Old Testament the land in dispute was given to them by God in the OT, divine authority trumps everything.

Offline mystictiger

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2010, 11:21:15 AM »
Holocaust: By Europeans on Jews. So make the Arabs suffer for our sins! That sounds like justice.

So we're going with a literal interpretation of the Old Testament to solve our problems?

Great!

Now all I need to do is have a daugther and hope that she's rebellious, and then I can have her stoned in public!

Offline Vekseid

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2010, 11:55:26 AM »
Mystictiger, if you want to make a debate on the merits or lack thereof in the Bible, please make your own thread and hopefully cease resorting to hyperbole. It does just as well to say that you do not acknowledge biblical authority and that it cannot be used to support Israel.

Offline mystictiger

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2010, 01:02:26 PM »
Point noted. I think, though, that pointing out the inherent weakness of recourse to divine mandate as an explanation for complex current geopolitical problems cannot be overstated. I will, however, not do so again. Your pardon.

Offline PhaiaTopic starter

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2010, 01:27:32 PM »
So Mystictiger, if ya want to use  historical precedent.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_ancient_Israel_and_Judah

They do predate most Arab lands in the region and historically can claim that Israel is their homeland!

Records refer to Israel as a people in ancient Egypt writing going back to 1200BC!!

This is what annoys me when people talk about the Jews having no claim or right to be there!!

I am not even speaking of biblical references

***The earliest mention of the name Israel comes at the very end of the Late Bronze Age, in an Egyptian inscription of about 1207 BCE. The Merneptah stele was erected to commemorate a victory over the Libyans and Sea Peoples, but includes a short poem or hymn listing victories over various cities in Canaan. Near the end occurs the line: "Israel is laid waste and his seed is not."[3] This Israel is identified as a people, and it is highly probable that they were located in the northern part of the central highlands, geographically part of what would later be the biblical Kingdom of Israel.***


So when someone says the Jews should go home...well they are home.

Also Islam is new as religions go, so even there the Jewish people have a longer claim!!

The problem is that Helen Thomas is a WHITE HOUSE press member and writes for Hearst publishing and her views seem to be representative of a segment of people...That to me is very disturbing. She has a large forum and readership and I have not heard other members of the mainstream press speak out against what she said. That also makes me concern.

Phaia
« Last Edit: June 05, 2010, 01:29:50 PM by Phaia »

Offline mystictiger

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2010, 01:50:53 PM »
I accept that Jewish tribes did indeed once inhabit that area.

Just as Native Americans once inhabited the US.
Just as Picts and Celts and Angles once inhabited the UK.
Just as Aboriginies once inhabited Australia.
Just as Ancient Greeks once ruled India.
Just as Britain once ruled America.

This does not, however, mean that because they once controlled it that they have a right to rule it again.

I do not believe that history can confer a 'right' to own real estate. The only thing that confers such a right is the brute reality of force and recognition.

Offline PhaiaTopic starter

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2010, 02:13:52 PM »
Gee Mystic, ya argue like Helen Thomas. So lets go back to the statement she made!!

Do you agree with Helen Thomas that the Jews  should go home...back to Poland and Germany and wherever?

I wasn't planning on a discussion of history and rights.
Instead I was wondering if her views represent others!

Phaia

« Last Edit: June 05, 2010, 02:16:58 PM by Phaia »

Offline mystictiger

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2010, 02:39:59 PM »
It is my understanding that the ultra-orthodox, extreme right-wing migrants from Russia, Poland and like places are the same ones that support / form the extremist settler groups. The kind of people that beat up IDF soldiers, attack shepherds and so on. In that regard, yes I think those should go home.

Not all Israelis. Not all jews. Just those nutjob few that are so blinded by their cause that they regard it as acceptable to kill in support of their religious objectives.

At the same time, I think the Hamas radicals who want to drive Israel into the sea should focus their wrath on the governments that keep them poor and isolated and backwards.

Briefly, I think that in this situation, there is no right answer. Too many compromises have been made, too many people killed on both sides for there ever to be peace without compromise. The Israelis are certainly not right - there is never a situation in which ethnic cleansing can be justified. The Palestinians are not right - there is never a situation in which the direct attack on civilians is acceptable.

Edit: And to return to the subject of the question - I don't think people should ever be afraid of expressing a view that they believe. If more people spoke out against injustices in this world rather than simply shuffling them under the blanket of political expediency (Human rights in Saudi, for instance), I think the world would be a better place.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2010, 02:50:02 PM by mystictiger »

Offline PhaiaTopic starter

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2010, 02:58:59 PM »

I do not know how to respond to this!!

Honestily Mystic you scare me!!

Phaia

Offline alxnjsh

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2010, 03:10:53 PM »
An interesting article along similar lines:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/05/22/will-this-generation-of-a_n_586059.html

The New York Review Of Books:

In 2003, several prominent Jewish philanthropists hired Republican pollster Frank Luntz to explain why American Jewish college students were not more vigorously rebutting campus criticism of Israel. In response, he unwittingly produced the most damning indictment of the organized American Jewish community that I have ever seen.

The philanthropists wanted to know what Jewish students thought about Israel. Luntz found that they mostly didn't. "Six times we have brought Jewish youth together as a group to talk about their Jewishness and connection to Israel," he reported. "Six times the topic of Israel did not come up until it was prompted. Six times these Jewish youth used the word 'they' rather than 'us' to describe the situation."

Offline mystictiger

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2010, 03:14:56 PM »
I do not know how to respond to this!!

Honestily Mystic you scare me!!

Phaia

I'm quite happy being Jewish and British. On going to Israel, I just found myself overwhelmed with as sense of sadness. I feel no connection with the regime that claims to speak for my faith. It would be like asking a Catholic if they felt at home when going to the Vatican.

Offline PhaiaTopic starter

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2010, 03:39:54 PM »
I'm quite happy being Jewish and British.


Okay let me see if I can restate the topic of the thread!!

Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americans??
Americans as defined as being part of the United States of America...Not the UK...not Europe or some island out in the ocean [besides Hawaii which is USA]

Mystic my question was not directed at you. And since you live in the UK you do not and cannot speak on weather Helen Thomas speaks for other amercians!!

Phaia

Offline mystictiger

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #16 on: June 05, 2010, 03:51:21 PM »
Then I would suggest you post it in the Americian only section of the forum.

Oh wait.

There isn't one.

Offline Synecdoche17

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #17 on: June 05, 2010, 04:22:19 PM »
Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americans??

Absolutely not. I'm a fairly hardcore American liberal, fist raised high in solidarity with my comrades, singing the Internationale, and her views make me recoil.

Generally, the American left breaks down into a couple of major categories:
- The left's hawks see Israel as a necessary component of American security
- The left's humanitarians cavil at both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian bloodshed for their murderous ways

Positions more extreme than that tend to be very fringe views (note that the article you quoted called for Thomas to retire immediately). I'm not sure why you hope the White House takes a stand on this - Helen Thomas isn't a White House employee, she's a reporter who gets sent to the White House by some media organization. I'd also point out that Obama's brother-in-law is a rabbi, and his Chief of Staff is a Jew, so it's not as though Obama's silence on the pressing issue of a batty old lady reveals his anti-Semitic allegiances. Dude's got two wars, a broken economy, and BP's casual devastation of the coast to deal with.

Offline Vekseid

Re: Does Helen Thomas speak for many Americians???
« Reply #18 on: June 05, 2010, 04:24:24 PM »
Alright, Phaia, Mystic, I'm going to lock this for a day or so. If you've calmed down after that period feel free to ask myself or another staff to unlock it.