Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Lying Critics, Israeli Settlements and Ambassador Friedman's Misspeak - by Stephen M. Flatow /

...Nonetheless, the two-percent figure is powerful and relevant. It’s an important reminder that the settlements are not the obstacle to peace, and that the critics of the settlements engage in wild exaggerations and demonization for political purposes.

Stephen M. Flatow..
03 September '17..

Public figures occasionally misspeak — i.e., they say something that is clearly untrue, not because they are intentionally lying — but because they innocently stumbled in their articulation of some thought.

A famous example occurred during the 2008 presidential campaign, when Democratic nominee Barack Obama was interviewed by George Stephanopoulos on the ABC news program, “This Week.” At one point, Obama used the phrase “my Muslim faith.”

Now, Obama obviously did not intend to say that. He had already said many times that he was a Christian, especially in response to various conspiracy theorists who were claiming that he was a secret Muslim. He meant to say, “my Christian faith,” but he stumbled. Stephanopoulos happened to be a very sympathetic interviewer, and he kindly jumped in right away and corrected the nominee. “My Christian faith,” Stephanopoulos interjected, at which point Obama realized his error and corrected it.

The Israeli journalist who interviewed US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman last week, however, was not so kind. Friedman was discussing Israeli settlements in the territories with a reporter from the Israeli news outlet Walla. Friedman shifted back and forth between referring to “the settlements” and referring to “Israel.” At one point, after having just used the term “Israel,” he remarked, “I mean, they’re only occupying 2 percent of the West Bank.”

It was obvious that Friedman was referring to the fact that the amount of land on which Jewish homes and buildings sit in the territories is barely two percent. That’s an indisputable fact. Any fair-minded person knows that’s what he meant.

But many of Friedman’s opponents are not fair-minded people. They are people with an agenda.

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Stephen M. Flatow, a vice president of the Religious Zionists of America, is an attorney in New Jersey and the father of Alisa Flatow, who was murdered in an Iranian-sponsored Palestinian terrorist attack in 1995.

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