Sheldon Kirshner

You Really Messed Up, Valerie

Yes, Valerie, you really screwed up.

Big time.

Your profuse apologies, masking stupidity, have been duly noted.

What impelled you, a self-styled progressive and supporter of the Democratic Party, to retweet a despicable link that veered into the swamp of antisemitism?

The writer whose link you foolishly retweeted accused American Jews of being a driving force “behind every war in the Middle East,” claimed that some Jewish Americans are loyal only to Israel, and insinuated that U.S. national security interests have been “hijacked” by Jewish neo-conservatives, “a group” that is “in thrall to a foreign government,” namely Israel.

The person at the center of this controversy is Valerie Plame Wilson, a former Central Intelligence Agency operative who, on the first day of Rosh Hashanah, took to Twitter to publicize and promote an antisemitic screed by Philip Giraldi that appeared in The Unz Review, a far right-wing online website founded by Ron Unz, who’s supposedly Jewish.

Wilson, at first, advised her Twitter followers to read the entire article by Giraldi, a former Central Intelligence Agency case officer and ex-army intelligence officer who can safely be described as anti-Israel.

“Try, just for a moment, to put aside your biases and think clearly,” she wrote condescendingly.

Claiming that Giraldi’s piece is “very provocative, but thoughtful,” she added, “Many neocon hawks ARE Jewish. Just FYI, I am of Jewish descent.” (Her paternal grandfather was a Ukrainian Jew, but she was raised as a Protestant).

Having taken flak for her inane comments, Wilson backed down, admitting she missed the “gross undercurrents” of Giraldi’s rant. “Ok, folks, look, I messed up. I skimmed (his) piece.”

Wilson acknowledged she is a devoted reader of Giraldi’s articles. According to the Washington Examiner, she  once complimented Giraldi for a piece titled Why I Still Dislike Israel.

Still in repentant mode, Wilson confessed she has also “carelessly retweeted articles from this same site, The Unz Review, without closely examining content and authors. Now that I have, I am horrified and ashamed.”

Wilson’s apology is skin-deep. At best, she’s a sloppy and careless reader. At worst, she shares Giraldi’s noxious beliefs.

Whatever you may think of Wilson, Giraldi is the real villain here.

His 1,600-word article in The Unz Review, dated September 19 and seething with oozing bile, is a classic example of antisemitic propaganda. I dare say it could have appeared in a neo-Nazi site.

“We all know it’s American Jews with all their money and power who are supporting every war in the Middle East …” he writes. “Shouldn’t we start calling them out and not letting them get away with it?”

In an age-old antisemitic trope, Giraldi says, “Jewish groups and deep pocket individual donors not only control the politicians, they own and run the media and entertainment industries … They are particularly sensitive on the issue of so-called ‘dual loyalty,’ particularly as the expression itself is a bit of a sham since it is pretty clear that some of them only have real loyalty to Israel.”

Giraldi claims that American Jews are hell-bent on starting a war with Iran. “Nearly all the Iran haters are Jewish,” he contends. “Every single one of them hates the nuclear deal with Iran with a passion, and they have argued in favor of military action against Iran at one point or another.” At another juncture, he observes, “It is safe to say that much of the agitation to do something about Iran comes from Israel and from American Jews.” Then, in the next breath, Giraldi denies that Iran is intent on destroying Israel.

The war camp, he goes on to say, is comprised of Jewish neo-conservatives like Michael Ledeen of the Foundation for Defence of Democracies, Daniel Pipes of the Middle East Forum, John Podhoretz of Commentary magazine, Elliot Abrams of the Council on Foreign Relations, Danielle Pletka of the American Enterprise Institute, and Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence in the second Bush administration.

He claims that none of these individuals has ever served in the American military. In a nasty insinuation, he maintains they “prefer to do the heavy thinking while they let others do the fighting and dying.”

Giraldi urges American Jews who hold senior policy making government positions involving the Middle East to “recuse” themselves. And in scurrilous fashion, he says that American Jewish supporters of Israel who appear on television should be labelled. “That would be like a warning label on a bottle of rat poison …”

In closing, he says, “We don’t need a war with Iran because Israel wants one and some rich and powerful American Jews are happy to deliver.”

If Giraldi is clearly a Jew-baiting scoundrel, what is Wilson? A lap dog? An idiot? A fellow traveller who doesn’t have the guts or the integrity to take ownership of her real views?

Your guess is as good as mine.



About the Author
Sheldon Kirshner is a journalist in Toronto. He writes at his online journal,