I bet you didn’t know I accused Alan Dershowitz of trying to kill Michael Lerner. Neither did I. But hell, that’s what the Dersh would have you believe in his latest ripping lie-filled yarn at HuffPo. He’s back there for the second time in six days, this time claiming Michael Lerner is trying to silence him.
Editors would do the man a favor by restraining his written output. Every time he writes he lies. And often when he writes he repeats the same lie he’s already published, which only compounds the problem. It’s come to the point where I wonder whether he knows he’s lying and doesn’t give a crap; or whether some mental impediment or grandiosity complex actually persuades him that anything issuing from his mouth must be true.
Somehow Lerner and I, by noting these lies and their ability to inspire the acts of other unbalanced individuals who share Dersh’ s views, constitute an attempt to “silence” him. Which is ludicrous if you consider that it is Dersh has published two pieces on this in four different publications in a space of six days. If this is silencing, then what would giving him free reign look like? Besides, God forbid anyone should think they could silence the biggest and fastest mouth this side of Brooklyn.
Imagine the hypocrisy of a tenured Harvard professor who almost single-handedly destroyed the academic career of Norman Finkelstein complaining about someone trying to silence him? In fact, I half expect Dershowitz may be researching employment information about our 38 rabbis and dispatching a damning dossier to their synagogue boards as he did at DePaul with Finkelstein. I wouldn’t put it past him.
Imagine the hypocrisy of someone who called Richard Goldstone a moser, a Jewish crime punishable by death, dismissing a claim that Dersh might be guilty of inciting violence against Michael Lerner.
First, our brash advocate believes he can’t be guilty of inciting the acts of vandalism against Lerner because he doesn’t know the perpetrators and didn’t put them up to it. Like a good defense attorney, Dershowitz knows how to frame an issue narrowly to absolve himself of responsibility. But you don’t have to know someone or tell them to do a bad act to be guilty of incitement. All you have to do is make odious statements whose contents are widely known in the uber-Israelist crowd in which Dersh and these scumbags run. Comments like Dershowitz’, in which he called Lerner and others who signed a statement supporting Richard Goldstone, “Hamas rabbis” and “virulently anti-Israel” among other choice epithets, could easily drive bad people to commit bad deeds.
The pro-Israel propagandist scoffs at the notion that Lerner was in any jeopardy despite the fact that his life has repeatedly been threatened over the 24 years he has published Tikkun:
On a scale of one to ten, having a few posters glued to your house ranks at about a one for seriousness.
Dersh, on the other hand, has faced down the tiger in his den. Who sent the tiger? Why, Michael Lerner of course:
I have been threatened with real violence, not a couple of posters on my house. I have needed armed bodyguards, policemen with bulletproof vests and other forms of protection from those incited by Lerner and his crew.
If any of this is true (it would be nice if Dershowitz would provide evidence for any of it, which he doesn’t), where is the least smidgen of evidence that anything Michael Lerner did or said about him had any impact on those who allegedly threatened his life? Dershowitz also ignores the fact that Lerner’s life too has really been threatened by people like Victor Vancier who have demonstrated the capacity for real acts of violence.
And where is the evidence that anything Michael Lerner has done or said was intended to “silence” someone afflicted with loggorhea? There is none of course. But don’t let that stop a serial liar when he’s just getting started.
The demagogue’s dismissal of any jeopardy Lerner faced through the attack on his home contrasts to this trenchant and eloquent comment in the HuffPo thread by Paul Surovell:
As a defender of democracy and free expression it behooves you to issue a more serious response to the action against Lerner, perhaps along the lines of the statement by the ADL, Jewish Community Relations Council, Northern California Board of Rabbis, and Jewish Federation of the East Bay, which says:
“We unequivocally condemn criminal acts perpetrated against Rabbi Lerner’s home. Political disagreements must be resolved in a civil manner, and not by resorting to violence. Our communities are especially disturbed that this crime targeted Rabbi Lerner at his home, thereby conveying to him the message that he may not be safe there. We are encouraged by the responsiveness of the Berkeley Police Department to this incident, and we urge its officers to investigate this crime as thoroughly as possible. The entire community must send a message to the perpetrators that we reject violence and criminality as a means to express our political opinions.”
The Harvard bloviator calls me a “follower” of Michael Lerner. Not only am I NOT a follower of Lerner, we often disagree on many issues. My post, which Dersh attacks was written independent of any discussion or consultation with Lerner. I don’t support Lerner because he is Lerner. I support him because I originally devised the idea of writing the letter whose signatories Dershowitz maligned; and because the Tikkun founder’s reputation and property have been assaulted by hyper-Zionist thugs, one of whom is Alan Dershowitz.
I wrote that his incitement against Lerner reminded me of King Henry’s statement about Thomas a Becket: “Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest.” Somehow this becomes a claim:
…Accusing me in effect, of trying to kill Lerner.
Note the well-placed “in effect.” That phrase conceals a lot of mendacity since I not only never accused him of trying to kill Lerner, I never accused him of inciting anyone else to do so either. But hey, why let a few facts get in the way?
You’d think with all that Harvard faculty support behind him he’d have a grad student proofread his copy before publishing. Get a load of this sentence, responding to my criticism of the professor for “impugning the morals of his enemies.” This is his barely coherent reply:
This is by one who supports the rabbi who has impugned the morals of his own enemies, namely the leaders of Israel by falsely accusing them of setting out to kill as many civilians as possible.
Of course, this claim too is a lie. Neither Lerner, nor Goldstone nor the rabbinical signers have accused Israel’s leaders of “setting out to kill as many civilians as possible.” Norman Finkelstein has already pointed out that Dershowitz either doesn’t know what a lie is or simply doesn’t give a crap. He is to liars what O.J. Simpson was to sociopaths–a perfect specimen of the type.
What Lerner and I demand is truth and accuracy, qualities Dershowitz wouldn’t know if they bit him in the ass.