A few weeks ago the head of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, Salaam Marayati, became the victim of the Zionist witch-hunt. He was appointed to the Congressional Terrorism Council by Richard Gephardt and then promptly removed after a Zionist campaign to discredit him.
Now the Zionist propaganda machine has turned up the heat on another prominent Arab American. By now everyone has probably heard about the attempt to defame and discredit Edward Said by Justus Reid Weiner. In an article in this month's issue of Commentary, the former Israeli Justice Department employee alleges that Said, a champion of the Palestinian cause, cultivated a fictitious childhood in Palestine.
Edward W. Said, 63, is a professor at Columbia University. Agree or disagree with him, the fact remains he is a respected and articulate commentator on Palestinian issues. Perhaps too respected and articulate for Israeli comfort.
The sixty-three-year-old has authored a number of books, including Orientalism, The Question of Palestine, Covering Islam, and Culture and Imperialism. Until his resignation in 1991, over differences with the Palestine Liberation Organization about the peace agreement, Said sat in the Palestinian parliament-in-exile for 14 years. It appears painfully evident today that Said was quite accurate in characterizing the peace agreement as "an instrument of Palestinian surrender."
The gist of the Weiner article titled "My Beautiful Old House and Other Fabrications" is that Said is a fraud.
At the outset it should be noted that much has already been written to disprove the charge that Said is a liar and needs no elaboration here.
After three years of extensive research as scholar-in-residence at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, Weiner has unearthed "evidence" of the following: Said's parents were never on the deed to the house in Jerusalem as it was owned by his relatives; the house was too small for his family to have possibly shared it with these relatives; Said spent his childhood in Cairo; Said never attended school in Jerusalem; and his mother was Lebanese.
Said and others have already addressed or disproved each of these "findings" but even if these were undeniable facts does this make Said a non-Palestinian? Well, the conclusion that Weiner would like us to draw is exactly that. Said is not a Palestinian, even though as Weiner himself admits, Said was born and baptized in Jerusalem. What is he then? An Egyptian? Or maybe an American?
Anyone familiar with the American-based Commentary would not be surprised with such "findings" making its way into its pages. What is surprising is the level of attention the piece has attracted outside of this audience. Given the neo-conservative magazine's reputation for being more pro-Israeli than most Israelis themselves, the article would not have normally attracted the kind of attention it has.
Without the international attention, the article would have merely preached to the converted. In fact, this article would have only built on previous attacks on Said by the magazine, including one article in the late 1980's titled "Professor of Terror."
But thanks to the pro-Zionist London Daily Telegraph and the New York Post, the issue was catapulted to the attention of the mainstream media. It is interesting to note that the owner of the Daily Telegraph is none other than Conrad Black who also owns the Jerusalem Post and Canada's National Post. The same National Post that gave a great deal of newsprint to Daniel Pipes to spew his anti-Islamic venom. Black's wife, Barbara Amiel, who is Vice President of Editorial for his Newspaper empire which includes hundreds of newspapers and magazines, is a powerful supporter of Zionist causes. No surprise that the Daily Telegraph plugged Weiner's propaganda as gospel.
The same agenda is evident from the New York Post. Last week the Post published an editorial called "Exposing Edward Said," and compared him to Rigoberta Menchu, the Guatemalan Nobel Peace Prize recipient who was found to have enhanced her memoirs. The Post also called him the "Palestinian Tawana Brawley." Interestingly, Commentary editor-at-large Norman Podhoretz's son John is an editor at the Post.
Freedom of the Press is alive and well - for those who own it.
None of these papers attempted to critically analyze the piece. Why was Said never interviewed? Why was a former teacher of his at the Jerusalem school he attended - now a retired professor at the University of Toronto - also not approached? Why no mention of or interviews with his relatives who escaped in 1948?
Perhaps the most ironic aspect of the campaign is how any Zionist has the right not only to speak out for Israeli but also to emigrate there. While a Palestinian may not even speak for his people unless he can satisfy the criteria set out by Weiner and his Center. Interestingly, neither Weiner nor the center's founder and president Daniel J. Elazar would meet such a test if it were imposed on them. Weiner and Elazar are both American born. Elazar, a Professor of Political Science at Temple University in Philadelphia, was born in Minneapolis in 1934 and maintains residences in Philadelphia and Jerusalem.
The anti-Marayati and anti-Said propaganda campaigns, if anything, confirm that Zionists will stop at nothing, not even fabricating evidence or creative manipulation of the facts, to ensure that their agenda is pushed forward.