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The Oldest Hatred
Madrid’s Newest Cultural Program: Anti-Semitism?
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  • JR

    Well, let’s see if this guy gets fired. Will give us a great starting point for Ben-Dahan conversation, eh, Dan Greene?

    • Dan Greene

      >> “Will give us a great starting point for Ben-Dahan conversation, eh, Dan Greene?”

      You tell me–probably not unless you have some theory that this unnamed Spanish guy’s idiocy justifies Ben-Dahan’s claims about the inherent inferiority of non-Jews or Reverend Shipman’s firing from Yale for writing a modest letter to the NYT on the Israel-Palesting issue. Is that what you are thinking?

      And isn’t it interesting that the guy who makes the anti-Jewish remark in Madrid is apologizing within hours. Bruce Shipman, who did nothing at all but foolishly imagine that he had free speech rights, was gone from Yale in days. And who’s still sitting pretty with no intention of apologizing for saying that non-Jews are inherently inferior to Jews (and that Palestinians are animals)? The utterly unrepentant Ben Dahan, reaping his well earned reward of US tax dollars.

      Also interesting that TAI jumps on this story as it breaks, but wouldn’t touch the others in a million years. Food for thought.

      • JR

        Here’s link to the article. Apparently he is Guillermo Zapata and he is some cultural blahblah of whatever. Made a Holocaust joke. Apologized by saying ooooppsie, I always make Holocaust jokes, it’s just what I do. No condemnations from leading Spanish newspapers. A short blurb on TAI. The world kind of moved on. I for one can promise you that I won’t be asking for Israel or the US or the EU or whomever else to change their policy towards Spain as long as this person who said something some may consider offensive is employed by the Spanish government. Doing that would just be crazy. Right? Or you think if I started ranting and raving and demanding, and accusing, and whatever else you think you do here, that would somehow make the outcome I advocate for more likely or less likely? What do you think?

        • Dan Greene

          Well something induced him to apologize–what was it?

          Ben-Dahan has never apologized and has no intention of doing so.

          See the difference?

          • JR

            His apology was a bit weak. And you are right, Ben-Dahan never apologized, as far as I can tell. But his comments were denounced in Jewish press. Different places responded to two different incidents and the rest of the world moved on. That’s the reality of the situation. I don’t care about Ben-Dahan or Guillermo Zapata. Certainly I would not talk about this more than a year after the fact, or however long (don’t care enough to check right now).
            As for what induced him to apologize, probably pressure from his party. Spouting stupid sh!t is a bad look. And yes, to pre-empt your question it is a bad look for Ben-Dahan was well. But the answer you are looking for is “Jew controlled media?”. Something like that, am I right? I’m sure I’m close. 🙂

          • Dan Greene

            >>”As for what induced him to apologize, probably pressure from his party. Spouting stupid sh!t is a bad look.”

            Yeah, probably so. So Ben-Dahan’s party is presumably copacetic with his racist blathering. And no one in Israel is paying a price for his racism. Unlike Zapata’s party, Ben-Dahan’s just isn’t that worried. And obviously Bibi isn’t concerned. Isn’t that a significant difference between these two stories.

            Zapata’s apology may be weak–but it’s more than anyone got of Ben-Dahan–and Ben Dahan is a much more senior figure than Zapata.

            And as for your last point, you tell me: Why did the story of a senior Israeli official who says that non-Jews (many who fund his government) are inherently inferior and that Palestinians are animals never get in to the US media?

            BTW, Here’s the NYT account of Zapata, right on time:

            http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/15/world/europe/spanish-official-apologizes-over-twitter-joke-about-holocaust.html?_r=0

            See the difference?

          • JR

            I made a mistake.

            “The Spain Report said journalists called for mayor Carmena to fire Zapata. The editor of El Español, Pedro J. Ramírez, a former editor of El Mundo, wrote: “In no democratic country would someone with public responsibility be capable of writing a tweet like Zapata’s. The first test for Carmena.”

            Apparently, he was condemned by Spanish newspapers. I don’t know who paid what in Israel. I don’t know who will pay what in Spain. That’s the whole point. No one is going to make a policy decision based on that. This is a sticking point for you. You just don’t seem to get that it just doesn’t matter that much. Most of US aid comes in a form of military-to-military cooperation, including the latest hardware/software combo using R&D from both US and Israel. To think that this will somehow be impacted by what one person said is silly. To be surprised that it in fact does not have any impact is very silly. To rant and rave about it more than a year after it happened, when it is clear that nothing will happen, the aid is increasing, well, that’s just.. a bit out there.

          • Dan Greene

            >> “I don’t know who paid what in Israel.”

            Sure, you do. The answer is nobody and nothing.

            And we already know that Zapata AT LEAST was compelled to offer an IMMEDIATE apology, which is at the very least some price.

            Don’t understand your last point. Because some time has gone by, we should just forget what Ben Dahan has been saying? Is that how you deal with all wrongs that took place in the past–just forget them? I think not.

          • JR

            You’re right. Tweeting out an apology is, literally, the very least. And no, I don’t know what happened in Israel. Same way I don’t know what happened in Spain. You don’t know either.
            And as for one person spouting off, that’s exactly what I suggest. Forget it. Or at least don’t fixate on it. There is a difference between something said and something done. The ol’ sticks and stones can break my bones but words will never hurt me.
            But let me ask you a question. Why do you think l’affair de Ben-Dahan failed to get any traction? What do you think caused that?

          • Dan Greene

            You know already within what–a day–that some pressure was brought to bear on Zapata and he was forced to respond.

            You know that Ben-Dahan was NEVER forced to respond. How? Because the Israeli press recounted his statements, but mentions nothing about apologies or disciplinary action. Neither the Defense Minister nor the PM said anything. I mean, come on, nothing whatsoever happened to the guy. He’s still in office and has never been forced to apologize publicly much less suffer anything more severe.

            Don’t know how can you say you don’t know. We know that Ben Dahan paid no price. Neither did his party. And yet here we are debating minute-by-minute what is happening to this municipal official in Spain and whether the action is adequate or not.

            See the difference?

          • JR

            I do see the difference. We are debating an event that took place very recently and one that took place in 2013.
            And I’m sick of you evading questions. You just ignore them. Sorry, but a conversation requires both parties to answer questions. Otherwise it turns into me just answering your monologues. That’s not very fair, now is it? So it’s your turn now.
            Why do you think the Ben-Dahan conspiracy failed to take off?
            If you can’t answer that then I’m not quite sure what the hell we are doing here.

          • Dan Greene

            What conspiracy–don’t understand?

          • JR

            Why do you think Ben-Dahan’s comments haven’t been publicized as widely?

          • Dan Greene

            That’s the real question, isn’t it? It’s inexplicable that his naked racism targeting the very people who fund the Israeli government was not covered in the US. Media organizations need to answer your question: Why cover this penny-ante Spaniard but not the much more senior Israeli official? It’s a question I would very much like to pose to the NYT editor who commissioned this story on Zapata, because something isn’t right and we need to find out what it is.

            Bottom line: The question you raise needs to be dug into and dug into deeply until we can uncover just why this story was not deemed to be “newsworthy.” It’s an absolute disgrace.

  • Andrew Allison

    TAI appears to have climbed onto the no humor please, we’re PC bandwagon. How about a reference to Spain’s recent passage of a law offering citizenship to Sephardic Jews (http://www.pressherald.com/2015/06/13/spain-approves-path-to-citizenship-for-sephardic-jews/)?

    • JR

      Agree completely. Everybody is way too sensitive these days.

      • Andrew Allison

        I’d suggest opportunistic rather than sensitive.

        • JR

          Agreed again. Feelings as weapons. It sucks.

    • christophergreen

      Humor about Nazis can be well done. A good example is Mel Brooks “The Producers” with the famous “Springtime for Hitler” dance. That was a parody laughing at Nazis. This Spanish politician’s joke was more about laughing along with Nazis about things that can be done with millions of Jews. It reflects a desire to commit such acts. This should be condemn as disgusting by any civilized person.

      • Andrew Allison

        No question that it was a stupid and tasteless joke on the part of the individual. My objection was to the erosion of freedom of speech which the PC thought police are bringing about (notably on university campuses across the country), and to the projection of one man’s bad joke onto a nation which has, in fact, demonstrated its remorse over anti-semitism in a very concrete way.

        • christophergreen

          This was the type of joke that would amuse a group of SS officers having a pleasant lunch at Auschwitz. Whenever I read a tweet like this, I suspect some alcohol was involved. Most people wouldn’t say something like this when they are sober. But as the ancient Romans used to say, “In vino veritas.” I think that this Spanish politician really does think that it is amusing. That is a good reason to worry about the direction of European politics.

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