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Jewish World Review
May 8, 2007
/ 20 Iyar, 5767
As the world churns ...
CNN commentator Lou Dobbs has developed a formula for his
successful daily program. It is taking a single issue such as the
debate on immigration and legalizing the status of the existing 12 to 20
million illegal immigrants in the country, and discussing it every day
for weeks or even months. He always forcefully presents his view that
allowing illegal immigrants to change their status to legal and allowing
them to ultimately become United States citizens without returning to
their own countries and standing in line with others is a form of
While it can be reasonably argued that there is a heavy handed
aspect to his daily attacks, the core of his argument is correct, in my
opinion. Because he is so effective, there are those who would now like
to get rid of him by charging him with the use of abusive language. The
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS) a famous historic private sector
agency that has assisted in bringing in millions of Jews over the years
as immigrants, has demanded that Dobbs be fired because, according to
The New York Sun, he "denounced immigrant-rights groups for portraying a
crackdown on illegal immigrants as a threat to foreigners who live in
America legally," saying "They might as well work for Herman Goering. I
mean, they're running so much propaganda, trying to confuse the debate,
the national dialogue, by talking about immigrants rather than illegal
aliens and legal immigrants."
Dobbs is right and, while a reference to Goering is a bit much,
and he probably meant to say Goebbels, the Nazi propaganda minister, he
is on target. The supporters of the drive to legalize illegal
immigrants often seek to confuse the issue by fudging if not eliminating
any difference between legal and illegal immigrants. If Dobbs had
wanted to avoid controversy, he would simply have alluded to the "big
lie" technique. In any event, it is an outrage that his job should be
threatened, although CNN will not succumb to the pressure. On the other
hand, advertisers have the courage of paper tigers. It is important
that those who believe in good tough debate stand up and defend the
other side, when as here, Dobbs has done nothing illegal, immoral or
unconscionable. Indeed, his opinion on this issue is the majority
opinion in the country.
I am surprised at the little coverage given by the print media
to the police riot last week in Los Angeles, resembling what occurred at
Kent State University 27 years ago in the era of the Vietnam War when a
national guard contingent fired into a crowd of protesting students,
killing four and injuring nine. This past week, apparently an audio
recording of the Kent State riot was found on which, according to The
New York Times, a voice "order[ed] troops to fire into a crowd of
students, according to a man wounded in the shootings who obtained a
copy of the recording."
In Los Angeles, Police Chief William Bratton said, according to
The Times, "the episode here in which police officers clashed with
demonstrators and journalists on Tuesday at an immigration rally was the
'worst incident of this type I have ever encountered in 37 years in law
According to the Los Angeles Times, "Bratton said the 60 or so
members of the Metropolitan Division's Platoon B have been 'stood down'
and won't return to active street duties until they have undergone
retraining that meets his level of comfort. 'Some of them in all
likelihood won't be returning to the Metropolitan Division as a result
of our findings,' he said. Any disciplinary action won't come until the
LAPD issues a May 30 report to the City Council. 'Some of this will be
career-impacting,' Bratton added. The chief made it clear that incident
commanders would be just as accountable."
The police said 15 civilians were hurt. The Times reported,
"Mr. Bratton said 240 non-lethal projectiles [rubber bullets] were fired
by the police into the crowd."
I oppose the goals of the rally and recognize there undoubtedly
were provocateurs who threw rocks and bottles at the police. I doubt
that the police were in such danger that they feared for their lives,
and they apparently did not try to apprehend those engaged in violent
behavior before resorting to their guns. Ultimately, the police
arrested nine people for offenses including assault and rock throwing.
Hopefully, those convicted will pay an appropriate penalty, including
jail time and not be discharged with a lecture. But the greater threat
to our liberties are the police who engaged in a police riot, described
by their police chief as the "worst incident of this type." They should
all be suspended from the force immediately and those who gave the
orders to lock, load and fire should be prosecuted. Society cannot
tolerate law breakers, especially among those charged with enforcing the
The Times published one of the scariest articles I've read in a
long time on what Western civilization is facing from Islamic terrorists
who are bent on destroying our culture. The article provides a picture
of one town in Jordan that produces Islamic terrorists who engage in
suicide bombings expecting and wanting to die in their cause, the
murdering of their opponents in Iraq which include Iraqi civilians and
The Times reports, "Local Imams led them further toward Iraq,
citing verses from the Koran to justify killing civilians." "The
anger," reports The Times, "is so palpable on the streets of Zarqa
[Jordan]. 'He's American? Let's kidnap and kill him,' one Islamic
activist said during an interview with a reporter before the host of the
meeting dissuaded him." The reporter goes on, "In April, a pair of
truck bombers killed nine American soldiers...Asked to name his targets,
Abu Ibrahim said: 'First, the Shiites. Second, the Americans. Third,
anywhere in the world where Islam is threatened.'"
We, the inhabitants of the Western world are under lethal
attack, not only in Iraq, but everywhere. My fear is that too many of
us refuse to believe that to be plausible. Adding to the problem, there
are many prepared to appease those who threaten us.
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JWR contributor Edward I. Koch, the former mayor of New York, can be heard on Bloomberg Radio (WBBR 1130 AM) every Sunday from 9-10 am . Comment by clicking here.
© 2007, Ed Koch