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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Eric Erickson charges Jennifer Rubin with dual loyalty, then backtracks

On Wednesday, Red State's Erick Erickson made a not-so-veiled charge of dual loyalty against Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin (Hat Tip: American Power).
Jenn Rubin, when not pushing out Romney talking points is in favor of freeing traitors, claims to be a conservative covering the conservative movement, though she has nothing in common with conservatives other than hating terrorists. A conservative friend says she’s best understood as ‘Likud’ rather than Republican or conservative. There’s nothing wrong with being Likud, but one ought to be honest about it. (Please be sure to read this update regarding this reference)
The update to which he refers took 16 hours to get there, and includes this:
I nor the friend of mine who offered that up are anti-Semitic, but it has apparently hit a nerve that I did not intend to hit and I feel I do need to apologize for that. A friend of mine explains to me that a Jewish-American might find it insulting because it suggests they put Israel ahead of the United States.

I had not thought of that when writing it and was not my intention. Where I finally had enough of Jenn Rubin was her position on Jonathan Pollard that I cannot in any way, shape, or form comprehend as being the right position. It was that position of hers and her positions on national security, terrorism, and Israel (all three of which she and I see eye to eye on) that didn’t make me think twice about using the Likud comparison. Apparently I should have. Likud as a party is tough as nails on terrorism and security issues, but is liberal to left (by American standards) on fiscal and social policy, and that’s what I intended by the comparison, not a suggestion of misplaced loyalty. And certainly not anti-semitism.
I would not call the Likud 'liberal to left' on fiscal policy - the forces arrayed against the free market in this country are far different than in the US, and there is a very different balance of power here. But that's not the point of this post.

What I want to get to is Erickson's labeling of anyone who advocates for Jonathan Pollard's release as having dual loyalties (yes, that still comes through in his apology) and of automatically not being a conservative. Over the last year, Lawrence Korb (formerly Caspar Weinberger's number 2 at the Defense Department), former CIA Director R. James Woolsey, former Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Dennis DeConcini (D-AZ), former Attorney General Michael Mukasey, former US Secretary of State George Schultz, and Harvard Professor Charles Ogletree have all come out in favor of releasing Pollard. Of those, to the best of my knowledge, only Mukasey is Jewish and only DeConcini and Ogletree are not Republicans.

Additionally, some 500 American Jewish and Christian leaders called for Pollard's release in a letter to President Obama in January. That letter cites all of the following (some of whom are already listed above) as favoring Pollard's release:
Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel, Senators Charles Schumer and Arlen Specter, Harvard Law Professors Charles Ogletree and Alan Dershowitz, former Attorney General Michael Mukasey, former Assistant Secretary of Defense Lawrence Korb, Rev. Theodore Hesburgh of Notre Dame, Benjamin Hooks of the NAACP, former federal Judge George Leighton, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, former U.S. Solicitor General Theodore Olsen, Pastor John Hagee, and Gary Bauer.
And 39 members of Congress.

Would Erickson accuse all of them of dual loyalty? Are none of them Republican or conservative enough for Erickson? Surely Hagee and Bauer (at least) ought to be. And if that's the case, why is Erickson going after Jennifer with a charge like this and not after any of them?

Pollard committed a crime and he's paid for that crime disproportionately. It's long past time to let him go. Unfortunately, much of the American Jewish community cannot find its voice on this issue precisely because it is intimidated by the type of dual loyalty charges made by Erickson against Jennifer Rubin. But the American Jewish community ought to find its voice.

Jonathan Pollard continues to sit in jail today precisely because he spied for Israel and not for Russia or China or Cuba. Jonathan Pollard continues to sit in jail today because of Caspar Weinberger's antipathy for Israel and Jews. Here's what Lawrence Korb had to say about that when he came out for releasing Pollard.
"Based on the knowledge that I have first hand, I can confidently say that the punishment was so severe because of lack of sympathy for Israel by the U.S. Secretary of Defense at the time, my boss, Caspar Weinberger," the letter stated.

According to Korb, Weinberg made great efforts to convince the judge to punish Pollard severely. "Although Pollard pleaded guilty, cooperated with the government and asked for clemency - he received disproportionate punishment," wrote Korb. "In the end Weinberg himself did not put the Pollard story in his biography. Weinberger said that the reason for this is because the affair had been exaggerated beyond minor importance - that is, he finally understood and admitted that the story had been blown beyond proportions. "

Korb emphasized that the average penalty for the offense Pollard committed is two to four years, and even today when the law changed - the average sentence is 10 years. "So if he was sentenced today he could not sit 25 years in prison. Justice will be done if the sentence is shortened to what has already been run to date," Korb's letter concluded.
Mr. Erickson should stop bullying people who disagree with him.

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At 2:40 PM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Mr. Erickson's anti-semitism comes out in the fact that he is so highly familiar with Israeli political parties and the interaction with the U.S. I would ask him to link posts he has put up concerning the dual loyalty of the Kennedy family, for example, who are of Irish descent, one of whose daughters married a Sinn Fein leader, who endlessly shill for Ireland over generations...

And we can probably find similar situation for every country on earth, because Americans come from every country on earth.

But Mr. Erickson will not have such examples because it does not even cross his mind that the Kennedy's Ireland connections would be a possible dual loyalty.

Only those who are Jewish and anti-terror get whacked by Mr. Erickson. That is why he and people like him, unfortunately some on the right, are Anti-Semites.

BTW, Pollard is an American, Mr. Erickson, not an Israeli. He has done excessive time because of people with attitudes like yours.

At 3:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's humorous is that Erickson has no room to criticize anybody else's conservative credentials. In Georgia where he lives, he was a big supporter of a lady running for governor called Karen Handel. She was basically the Mitt Romney of the governor's race against a more conservative rival. Erickson backed Handel to the hilt against her more conservative opponent to be the Republican nominee.

Erickson has national Republicans fooled into thinking he's a conservative. But in Georgia it's much clearer that Erickson is libertarian leaning, fiscally conservative, and socially indifferent.

At 3:44 PM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Re Pollard, Mr. Erickson, what about the people who helped China get their rockets to quit blowing up on launch. In my mind, that is a far more devastating breach (ITAR, etc.) for America than Mr. Pollard's. And yet, did a single person get prosecuted or held in prison for Decades over that? Have you called out people protecting tech transfer leaks to China? Do these things even cross your mind? Or is it just Jenn and Pollard, the Jews and the shimmer of the teeny tiny Jewish country of Israel that would have you feeling feisty in posting what you did. Seems to me you (and some number of others) need to re-evaluate your core beliefs.

At 4:19 PM, Blogger AmPowerBlog said...

Thanks for the link. I'll update with some additional comments later...

At 7:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry, Pollard was a giant red herring for Red State's Erickson to begin with. The Likud dual-loyalty meme is the usual Ron Paul-Pat Buchanan anti-Zionist nativist whining that pops up at Red States. American Thinker, American Conservative etc. Jenn Rubin obviously doesn't belong to Likud--the whole LIkudnik label is attached to her not because she supports P-O-L-L-A-R-D but because she is J-E-W-I-S-H.

At 6:34 PM, Blogger steve klein said...

Erickson wrote the following in part, last January:

"There are few conservatives within the actual conservative movement who are paying attention, but the bulk of those who are do not want Pollard released. They want him hanged or shot as a traitor to his country.

"I realize there are people who believe our alliance with Israel outweighs every other consideration and they are forced to make logical leaps to defend or mitigate Jonathan Pollard’s actions...."

Erickson appreciates that there are people who believe our alliance with Israel outweighs every other consideration. Even when it comes to matters of justice vs. injustice, right vs. wrong, good vs. evil, etc., there are people who will dispense with all of these out of an irrational support for Israel. Maybe that is why Erickson wrote earlier, he wants Congressman Ron Paul to win the Iowa caucuses.

Seems to me, Mr. Erickson has a deep-seated problem with Israel.


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