Yesterday on “Hardball”, Ethan Bronner, Jerusalem Bureau Chief for the New York Times, suggested that President Barack Obama’s flagging popularity in Israel may stem from racism. Here is the transcript from Newsbusters:
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Let’s talk about politics. Who’s more popular: Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, Joe Biden? Put them in order. Who’s the most popular figure?
BRONNER: I would say that there is some level of prejudice about the fact that he had some Islamic background through his stepfather. But I think it has more to do with the fact that when he came into office a year ago he wanted to recalibrate the relationship between the United States and the Muslim world. And the easiest and clearest way of doing that was to put some distance between the United States and Israel. And he did that, and that made people nervous. I think there’s also some sense here, some degree of racism to be perfectly honest.
MATTHEWS: Yeah, because they see him as a black man.
I shouldn’t be surprised. After all, anyone who disagrees with Obama is clearly racist. And in light of recent Jewish history — genocide, Russian pogroms, dhimmitude, military aggression, suicide bombings, rocket attacks, etc. – there is an underlying racist narrative. I had just always thought of Jewish people as the targets of bigotry, not the other way around.
On the other hand, Obama’s unpopularity with Israelis could stem from that other thing Bronner mentioned, Obama’s moves to “put some distance between the United States and Israel” in order to “recalibrate” our relationship with true racists who want to drive Israel into the Mediterranean Sea.
No, that’s not it. They probably just don’t like Obama because he’s black.