Mark Twain once reiterated that “there are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics.” And former president Jimmy Carter has made a post-presidential career out of lying about Israel. The latest is this doozy, which appeared in his November 29 op-ed in the New York Times:  “Over 4.5 million Palestinians live in these occupied territories…Most live largely under Israeli military rule…”

Not only is that a lie, but Carter knows it’s a lie. The former president has visited Ramallah , the Palestinian Authority’s capital city with a population of more than 57,000 residents, on numerous occasions — most recently in May 2015, when he placed a wreath at the tomb of arch-terrorist Yasser Arafat there. He has seen with his own eyes that there are no Israeli troops occupying that city, or any of the other cities where 98% of the Palestinian Arabs reside.

Carter knows that the PA, not Israel, rules those areas. He knows that the PA, not Israel, runs the schools, the courts, the police department, and all other aspects of daily life.

Since Carter used the figure 4.5-million in his op-ed, he must have been including Gaza in his accusation. Yet he knows there are no Israelis occupying Gaza. He knows that Hamas rules that area.

So how can the ex-president knowingly tell such blatant lies? The same question might be asked about many of his past statements about Israel:

— He wrote a book in 2006 accusing Israel of apartheid, and gave an interview to Tikkun in which he said that Israeli policies are actually “worse than what happened in South Africa.”

— He charged that “university campuses with high Jewish enrollment” blocked him from speaking about his book.

— He asserted that beginning in August 2004, Hamas “meticulously observed a cease-fire commitment” with Israel. (That period included the Hamas suicide-bombing massacre of 16 Israelis in Haifa and many other Hamas attacks.)

— He claimed (in his 1985 book, The Blood of Abraham) that Israel’s secret “goal” is to attain “boundaries similar to those in the time of King David.”

These are just a small sample from Carter’s record on Israel.

So we see that Carter’s lie about the Israeli “occupation,” in his New York Times op-ed, is just the latest in a long series of fabrications. It’s as if when it comes to Israel, he just can’t control himself. But what is the Times’ excuse for publishing such a blatant falsehood? Were the Times’ fact-checkers asleep when Carter submitted his op-ed?