I was mortified the other day when perusing my social media groups to find a re-posting of a blog post by a certain Debbie Schlussel belittling the gruesome beheading of Steven Sotloff by ISIS. The reason for her ridicule, Sotloff an American with Israeli citizenship was, according to her, an admirer of Islam and a supporter of the Palestinian cause. She goes on to further dubiously quote sources that say that Sotloff who lived in Israel for three years “hated” Israel, as if any of these accusations lessens the horror of his death or somehow diminishes the brutality and inhumanity of his beheading. Perhaps in her warped mind this couldn’t have happened to a better person.
I felt compelled to do some online research on Debbie Schlussel. I started with her website which looks like it was cobbled together by high school kids with limited programming skills. The archives of her posts prove to be one racist rant after another, her primary target, Muslims. Not just Jihadists or Muslim terrorists simply Muslims. One quote from a posting in May of 2014 about a New Jersey Muslim city councilman who raised a Palestinian flag in Patterson:
“Like I always say, you can take ‘em out of the Muslim world, but you can’t take Muslim world values of violence and destruction out of them.”
A review of her bio shows what appears to be the impressive resume of a well-educated, pro Israel attorney who doubles as a conservative political pundit. Listed are numerous appearances on various news and entertainment programs. While I don’t doubt those appearances, as a news junkie I can tell you the first time I even heard of her was when seeing the repost of the Sotloff piece. She may have made it to The Factor with Bill O’Reilly once, but she must not have been very impressive because I never saw her on it or any of the other programs she listed.
A Google search will bring up more negatives than positives on this self proclaimed defender of Israel. I decided to write her an email expressing my distaste for her posting on Sotloff. My premise was a simple one. Like her I am the child of a Holocaust survivor and as such I am sensitive to the term “Kiddush Hashem,” sanctification of God’s name. While Judaism has specific explanations of Kiddush Hashem after the forced conversions and expulsions from Spain and most recently the Holocaust and terror against Jews and Israeli’s the term has been adopted for anyone who dies because he is a Jew or a sympathizer of our people. ISIS may or may not have known that Sotloff was a Jew (his name might have given him away) but an enemy of Israel, Jews and the West killed him. In my book he is a kadosh – a martyr no matter what his political leanings. Here is my email in its entirety:
I don’t know you and now certainly don’t care to. What you are doing to Mr. Sotloff who died sanctifying God’s name is a disgrace to humanity. You are taking your advocacy of a just cause to the levels of the murderers you rail against. You should repent to God and his family before Yom Kippur.
Granted, I am not hiding my distaste towards her but I was being honest and to the point. Busy pundits generally don’t have time for emails from the likes of nobody’s like me and when they do I’m pretty sure the responses are intelligent. Here are her two responses in full without editing (I make this point because she edited her responses in a subsequent post on her site to make her sound somewhat intelligent):
“Only a moron (you) would believe that BS story that is completely unproven about him praying on Yom Kippur. He did NOT die sanctifying G-d’s name. Not even close. Get a clue. He was a fan of Islam, NOT Judaism. The Jewish smart gene clearly missed you.”
“PS, moron, he died reading a script that ISIS gave him to read NOT “sanctifying G-d’s name.” Stop making up s***. But here’s what all of his friends told the media he did b/f ISIS captured him, all of which you probably think is fabulous–none of these are from me, all from mainstream media sources, you f****** idiot. Good thing you weren’t around in 1944, or you’d be defending the Nazi’s kapos and Goebbels. Imbecile. You should repent to the Jewish People for your blind idiocy before Yom Kippur. Sadly, we know that is a continuing disease in your case, as there aren’t brain transplant operations available yet.”
She sites some mainstream media sources The Wall Street Journal and The Australian that confirm his admiration for Arab and Islamic culture, again certainly not anything deserving of the death penalty let alone in such gruesome fashion. However, what struck me most was her inarticulate, sophomoric responses and asserting I mentioned anything about his praying on Yom Kippur, I did not, which leads me to believe that the only thing she really knows how to do is self-promote. As a vessel, she uses pro Israel advocacy. Today she sent me the following email with link attached:
“Gave you a starring role:
The Steven Sotloff Story About Fasting, Praying on Yom Kippur is Phony, BS – Debunked! ISIS Did Not Release Anyone who Was in Captivity with Sotloff. “Anonymous” Source Lied . . http://www.debbieschlussel.com/74564/steven-sotloff-about-praying-fasting-on-yom-kippur-is-fake-bs/”
This posting goes from debunking a story I never sited nor do I care if it is true or not to demeaning Reform Jews:
“Sotloff went to a Reform Temple, which he did not attend regularly. Anyone who knows anything about Judaism knows that Reform Jews are completely ignorant of Judaism. Most cannot read a word of Hebrew (which is why most of their abbreviated, hippie-style prayers are in English), and none can remember the Yom Kippur prayers by heart (heck, even the most religious Orthodox Jews don’t remember those prayers without a prayer book). Most do not even fast on Yom Kippur.”
She also refers Yediot Aharonot the largest circulation Israeli daily newspaper as Idiot Aharonot and calls journalist Yitchak Benhorin a writer of fairy tales. Bottom line friends, with advocates like Debbie Schlussel we don’t need much to give our enemies ammunition to use against us. Steven Sotloff died “Al Kiddush Hashem.” May his soul be bound in eternal life and God avenge his horrible death.