I found the article last week on the accomplishments of Stu Eizenstat to he highly informative. However, I was disappointed to learn that Tom Friedman is the choice of the 2014 Eizenstat lecture.
There are two reasons why Tom Friedman should not be honored by our community. First, his track record on predicting events is poor. Second, he doesn’t like us.
Tom Friedman has written several books. I am hard pressed to remember a single prediction that he has made that has materialized. Perhaps other readers of the AJT can fill me in on this with future letters. However, the second reason is far more important.
In a notorious New York Times column of December 13, 2011, Friedman stated “I sure hope that Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, understands that the standing ovation he got in Congress this year was not for his politics. That ovation was bought and paid for by the Israel lobby.”
This is classic rhetoric of right wing anti-Semitic groups such as Stormfront and the KKK, whom like Friedman, assert that Washington DC is ruled by ZOG (Zionist Occupation Government).
Tom Friedman followed this up with another zinger in the November 19, 2013 issue of the New York Times “never have I seen more lawmakers—Democrats and Republicans—more willing to take Israel’s side against their own president’s. I’m certain this comes less from any careful consideration of the facts and more from a growing tendency by many American lawmakers to do whatever the Israel lobby asks them to do in order to garner Jewish votes and campaign donations.”
Because of these articles and many others, pundit David Hornik has ranked Tom Friedman #3 in his ranking of purveyors of American anti-Semitism, an honor that he shares with #2 Students for Justice In Palestine, #1 Louis Farrakhan, and #6 Patrick Buchanan.
The AA Synagogue has the right to host anyone it wants. I would recommend we handle Tom Friedman as he would deal with us – a boycott.
Lets stay at home. The best way we would convey our dismay to Tom Friedman is to have him mount the podium, look around a cavernous but empty auditorium, and let him give his address to an audience of zero.