Tuesday, February 26, 2008
i tried to ignore him and talk to the Lord, pray for him, but some fools just love to perform:
I have a friendly relationship with Noah Pollak, which is why I've left him out of out of what I've been writing about the smear of Samantha Power as an antisemite. But now he's called me "lazy and dishonest," so fuck it.

Pollak's beef is that he never actually uses the word "antisemite." And that's true, he doesn't. It's just not exculpatory, because he's spent three posts -- here, here, and here; the fourth one he links to has kind of a meta-comment on the smear at the end -- implying that she has a special animus against the Jewish state. I will not suspend disbelief on behalf of someone who traffics in innuendo. Pollak is trying to get you to believe that Power, who wrote and published her first book with the assistance of arch-Jew-hater Leon Wieseltier, is an antisemite. He's just too much of a pussy to come out and say that, because then he'd have to defend a baseless point.

He keeps on demanding that Power "explain" prior statements. But why shouldn't Pollak, allegedly a journalist, actually, you know, try to answer his own questions? Here's a simple test. Call TNR at 202-508-4444. Ask for Leon. Ask Leon Wieseltier if Samantha Power harbors any ill will toward Israel or the Jews. Or does Pollak think Leon is no real friend of the Jews? I'm sure Pollak will get right on this and report back, because Lord knows he'd never be either lazy or dishonest.

Update: It gets better! Max Boot just wrote the following:
I’ve known Power for six years and have never heard her say anything that I would construe as anti-Israel. In fact, at a December 2006 forum at Harvard’s Kennedy School at which we were both panelists, she rather forcefully dismissed a claim by a Jewish anti-Zionist in the audience who tried to equate Israeli policy with South African apartheid—a favorite trope of the hard left.
Ready to give it up and apologize to Power yet, Noah?
--Spencer Ackerman
Okay, Spencer. Here we go. A nitpick first: Can you show me even one example of something that would lend credibility to your assertion that I "keep on demanding that Power 'explain' prior statements"? I don't believe I ever demanded, or even asked, anything of Power.

Onward to the heart of the matter. Once again, I ask you: Will you please -- please -- just provide me with the quotes that have caused you to become convinced that I believe that Power is an anti-Semite?

I ask, nay, beg this of you, because what's so bewildering to me -- and I am being completely forthright and sincere here -- is the nature of what exactly it is I've said that has convinced you and your jerk lackey, Yglesias, that I harbor such dark views of Power and the Obama campaign.

Because the thing is, I don't. I do not believe for one second that Power is animated by Jew-hatred, Jew-dislike, Jew-ambivalence, or whatever you want to call it. Same goes for Obama. What I *do* believe, and what I have tried to be very clear in expressing, is that I think that Power is possessed of some very foolish opinions on the Middle East, opinions that, yes, would be harmful to American and Israeli interests in the region if such opinions found their way into American policy.

Let me also add this: I've never even accused Power of being "anti-Israel," as 1) I don't employ such crude means of expression, and 2) I don't think she is "anti-Israel," whatever that might mean. As I said above, I think she's ignorant and that she believes foolish things.

Honestly Spencer, I really don't like being accused of calling people anti-Semites, and I really don't derive any pleasure or satisfaction in being attacked. So I'm asking you again, just as I did on Contentions, to produce even one quote from me that you think legitimately supports your allegation. If you can't do that, then please -- find another target for your rantings.
Blogger Noah | 11:09 AM

Here's the thing: Pollack is a schmuck. He doesn't know Shi'ite from shinola and is the kind of guy who thinks that former Christian LF militiamen are the right guides for a trip to the south of Lebanon, which his buddy and fellow traveler Michael Totten calls "Upper Galilee."

In order to support his idea that Power knows less about sensible policies for the region than he does, he quotes Michael Young, whom no one but Washington know-nothing pundits who can't speak a word of Arabic take seriously these days and who amazingly without a hint of irony speaks of "countries that have been responsible for sustaining the fighting in Iraq" without mentioning the US.

He's the sort of guy who is now all about feting the virtues of Walid Jumblatt just because he's against Hezbollah and Damascus, nevermind the fact that he's a blatant anti-semite who is about as close to the definition of a fair weather friend as you'll ever find.

But that's the thing: Noah doesn't know much about Walid Bek, nor does he care to learn. Because such are the ways of partisan dilettantes.

Treating his posts as anything other than partisan hackery is a waste of your time.
Blogger sean | 3:51 PM