Wednesday, May 8, 2024

Good WILL TRENT episode and awful Bette Midler attacks Lindsay Lohan

WILL TRENT was pretty good last night.  I never did watch that other one.  I finally gave up.  If three attempts to watch and I still can't get through the episode?  I'll see that as a sign that it's just not working for me.  But st night was pretty good.  I do have a complaint.  Next week's episode.  If you haven't watched last night's episode, consider turning off at the end and not catching the ad for next week.  Why?  I don't feel like I need to watch it.  They pretty much gave everything away -- including a murder close to home -- in the ad. 

But last night was a good episode.  You know what never had a good episode?  BETTE.  That's the Bette Midler sitcom that bombed even worse than EMERIL.  From USA TODAY:

Bette Midler has said she regrets not suing Lindsay Lohan when she walked away from their shared sitcom, Bette, after the pilot was filmed in the early 2000s.

Midler played herself in the situation comedy, which aired in America from October 2000 to March 2001, with Kevin Dunn playing her husband and Lohan as her daughter in the pilot.

Although 18 episodes of Bette were filmed, two instalments were never aired and the show was cancelled after its first season.

The actor, 78, has revealed she wishes she had taken legal action against Lohan for ditching the series, who was 13 years old at the time.

Speaking to the Fail Better podcast, Midler called Bette a “mistake” and admitted she was naive when entering into the project.

“I had never done a situation comedy,” she said. “I didn’t realise what the pace was. I didn’t understand what the hierarchy was and no one bothered to tell me.”

Bette Midler is so awful.  She was going to sue a 13-year-old?  She thinks that would have helped her failure of a career?

Reality, "I had never done a situation comedy"?  She'd been a guest star on MURPHY BROWN in the 90s, she'd been a guest star on SEINFELD in the 90s, she'd been a guest star on THE NANNY in the 90s.

She continued, “I had made theatrical live events. I had made films. I had made variety television shows. I had been on talk shows. But I had never done a situation comedy. I didn’t realize what the pace was. And I didn’t understand what the hierarchy was. And no one bothered to tell me.”

What a liar.

Reality, her film career was over.

She killed it herself.

It was hilarious when she went anti-trans online not that long ago and tried to minimize it by saying basically 'with all the support I've given you the LGBTQ+ community.'

Uhm, excuse me.  When she became a hit with DISNEY?  She was rewriting history -- even VANITY FAIR called her out.  In a sociology college course I had, a woman did a whole presentation on Bette and how she rewrote her time at the baths and tried to pretend like she had no idea that men were having sex there.

Was that her support?

She was also trying to play more conservative than thou during this period.

She was a monster who insulted Shelley Long (they did the hit OUTRAGEOUS FORTUNE TOGETHER), Lily Tomlin (BIG BUSINESS) and everyone else.

No one wanted to work with her.   She made Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton miserable on the set of THE FIRST WIVES CLUB -- which is the real reason that the three still haven't reteamed.  Goldie's worked with Diane since and would again.  Same on Diane's side.  But neither is desperate to work with Bette.
She leaves out that she was credited as a producer on BETTE, by the way.  She really needs to stop attacking Lindsey Lohan.  

Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"


Wednesday, May 8, 2024.  The assault on Gaza continues and Joe Biden widens the attack to also include US students.

To all be on the same page, let's open with this from Tuesday's DEMOCRACY NOW!

Palestinians in Rafah say they are trapped as Israeli tanks have taken over the crossing on Gaza’s border with Egypt. The U.N. says Israel is denying access to the southern Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing, as aid groups warn of impending catastrophe amid chaotic scenes of families fleeing with no safe option for shelter. The area came under heavy aerial bombardment again overnight as Israel vowed to continue its attacks on Rafah even after Hamas said it had accepted a ceasefire proposal advanced by Qatari and Egyptian mediators Monday. Israel rejected the ceasefire but said it would send a delegation to Cairo for further talks. We’ll go to Rafah later in the broadcast to get the latest from Palestinian journalist Akram al-Satarri.

A ground attack on Rafah must be prevented, Jordan’s King Abdullah II told senior US politicians in Washington on Tuesday, after Israel captured the area’s crossing with Egypt and stopped aid going through.

“His majesty affirmed the need to prevent the Israeli military land operation against Rafah,” the official Jordanian news agency reported.

The king met House Speaker Mike Johnson and other senior members of Congress in the US Capitol, as part of a trip to Washington to discuss the Gaza war.

The agency quoted the king as saying that the Israeli takeover of the crossing, and the resulting halt in aid flows, will “compound the humanitarian crisis in Gaza”.

On Monday, the king met US President Joe Biden in the White House, as Israel was carrying out air strikes in Rafah in preparation for a ground assault.

He told Mr Biden that an Israeli ground offensive on the area would lead to a “new massacre”, according to a royal palace statement.

This morning, NBC NEWS'  , and The United States halted a large shipment of offensive weapons to Israel last week in a sign of its growing concern over a possible military offensive on Rafah, senior administration officials told NBC News."  Felicia Schwartz in Washington and Mehul Sry ivastava (FINANCIAL TIMES OF LONDON) observe, "The move marks the first known time that the US has held up a potential weapons delivery since Hamas attacked Israel on October 7 and the Jewish state launched its retaliatory offensive against the militant group in Gaza."  Zeke Miller and  Aamer Madhani (AP) add, "The shipment was supposed to consist of 1,800 2,000-pound (900-kilogram) bombs and 1,700 500-pound (225-kilogram) bombs, according to the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive matter, with the focus of U.S. concern being the larger explosives and how they could be used in a dense urban setting."

 You know what might help US President Joe Biden stand up to the Israeli government?  Pretend that they're American students -- he clearly feels no loyalty to them and will brandish any vicious lie against them.  Sharon Zhang (TRUTH OUT) notes:

As Israel embarked on the first steps of its long-promised invasion of Rafah, Biden delivered a chilling speech scapegoating Hamas militants and pro-Palestine protesters for antisemitism in the U.S. on Tuesday, vowing a crackdown on demonstrators seeking to end Israel’s atrocities in Gaza.

During remarks at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Annual Days of Remembrance ceremony, Biden interweaved discussion of the Holocaust with condemnation of Hamas militants’ attack on Israelis on October 7, 2023. Invoking racist tropes, Biden claimed that Hamas militants harbor the same “ancient hatred” of Jewish people that spurred the Holocaust — an equivalence that has been drawn by Israeli officials time and time again to justify Israel’s brutality against Palestinians.

Antisemitic “hatred was brought to life on October 7 of 2023,” Biden said, by Hamas militants “driven by an ancient desire to wipe out the Jewish people off the face of the earth.” At one point, he equated the attack on October 7 to the Holocaust. “Too many people denying, downplaying, rationalizing, ignoring the horrors of the Holocaust on October 7, including Hamas’s appalling use of sexual violence to torture and terrorize Jews.”

This statement is incorrect and dangerous for many reasons, as human rights advocates have pointed out. As a group, Hamas is far from “ancient” — Hamas was established 37 years ago by revolutionaries seeking to liberate Palestine from decades of violent Israeli occupation, ethnic cleansing and apartheid, with an opposition to Zionism, not the Jewish people, as the group established in their 2017 charter.

Saying that there is an “ancient desire” to kill Jewish people within the Palestinian resistance, then, implies that Biden believes that Palestinians have an innate desire to oppose Jewish people — an implication that many advocates for Palestinian rights have pointed out is deeply racist, and an accusation that has long been levied against Palestinians in order to justify their slaughter.

[. . .]

The president spent roughly half of his speech, supposedly aimed at addressing antisemitism, denouncing Hamas and student protesters against genocide, without a word about the antisemitism growing within the Republican Party and embraced by his opponent in the presidential election. This is only the latest example of Biden and Zionists within his administration cynically using antisemitism as a bludgeon to silence critics of Israel’s genocide — a practice that many Jewish anti-Zionists have said only makes it harder to fight actual antisemitism. 

Joe is a damn liar -- and he's going to really tick me off.  When that happens . . .

When that happens, I'm going to erupt here and hand the GOP the election.  I'm biting my tongue to avoid it.  I don't want Donald Trump back in the White House.  But Joe's lies about the students and his attacks on them are enraging me and he needs to stop or a snapshot is going to open with the observation that the GOP should have made long ago.  If there's anything more stupid than Joe Biden these days, it's the GOP who seems to forget how to do a real attack.  Or, for that matter, point out the obvious.

Rebecca pointed out the obvious last night in "shut up, joe:"

you know what, joe biden. you're a joke.  palestinians - in fact all arabs - are under threat in the u.s.

when you want to get honest about that, i might have some respect for you.

last time i checked, only 3 college students had been shot in the u.s.

they were not jewish.

they were arab.

so shut the F up all damn ready.

if you've forgotten about the 3 palestinian college students - clearly joe biden has - this is from cnn back in november:

One of the three 20-year-old Palestinian college students who were shot Saturday night in Vermont has been released from a hospital, a source close to the families of the victims told CNN on Monday night.

The identity of the released student is not being shared at this time because of concerns for the young man’s safety, the source said.

The two other students remain hospitalized, one with a spinal injury that will require long-term care, officials said.

The news comes hours after the suspected shooter pleaded not guilty to attempted second-degree murder charges in a Burlington court and authorities said at a news conference they’re still working to determine a motive for the shooting.

The shooting victims are Hisham Awartani, a student at Brown University in Rhode Island; Kinnan Abdalhamid, a student at Haverford College in Pennsylvania; and Tahseen Ali Ahmad, a student at Trinity College in Connecticut, according to the Institute for Middle East Understanding.

i'm not in the mood for slow joe biden.  if he can't defend arabs, he needs to pack it in and go home all damn ready.  

Rebecca is exactly right and shame on all the liars and lying media promoting them.  To date, three students have been shot in the US --- all were Palestinians.  A fact that a real president of the United States would remember.

The biggest crybabies, never forget, are on the fright wing and when they need to whine?  They run to FOX "NEWS."  Such as yesterday.

Like Elisha Baker.  Lisha -- he's so dainty on Twitter -- needs the world to know that Columbia cancelling the graduation ceremony has destroyed him.  Why? He's not going to get to attend . . . the graduations of others.  You remember how sad it was when you were desperate to fit in but couldn't so you pretended like you knew all the seniors.  I don't remember it either but I was trying to make Lisha seem a little less pathetic.  Too late, right.  Lisha's biggest complaint?  He's been robbed of "joy."  Yeah, he's never lived in the real world and wouldn't know a real problem if he was standing in front of one.  He also complains of feeling small and tiny when a pro-Palestine banner was unfurled and it was over 20 feet.  Anything over two inches is huge to Lisha.  

We can't forget Yola Ashkenazie.  She's presented in the same Tuesday report  on FOX "NEWS" as a Columbia student but she's not.  No, she isn't.  She chose to go to Barnard but saying she's a student of Barnard won't get her on TV, now will it.  Nor will that face -- there are full grown lions with smaller mandibles.  Let's hope when she graduates -- not from Columbia and apparently not this year -- that she sends out a note, "Your presence at my graduation is the greatest gift I could ask for. Should you wish to honor me with a gift, while Spanks are nice and needed, I would prefer money so that I can get my jaw broken and reset and then maybe look like a normal human being."  She's agitated in the pages of THE NEW YORK POST and in the halls of Congress.  

Eden Yadegar.  She's also  bummed -- as she shares in the 'report.'  Big time.  Just another Columbia student, right?  Oops.  Nope. She's the president of Students Supporting Israel.  Kind of a key detail for FOX "NEWS" to leave out.  But no one really expects actual news from FOX "NEWS" -- not even the shut-ins.  Oh, and just so you know what else FOX "NEWS" for got to include, Eden?  She's also, as she notes on LINKEDIN -- actual research and reporting is so very hard for FOX "NEWS" -- someone who worked for AIPAC from September 2022 throuh December 2023.  She terms herself, on her Twitter account, "Israel's d*ck rider."  Maybe she recently fell off while riding?  Bumped her head?  That would explain the reTweet she did about a Jewish person "cosplaying" Jew in her opinion when the CNN cameras come around.  Dear, you're supposed to be graduating yet you can't read "FOX NATION" at the bottom of the video you reposted?  FOX NATION, not CNN, that's the video that you posted of the Jewish guy supposedly "cosplaying."

Students trying to stop a genocide are under attack and are attacked constantly.  Yesterday, they were attacked by PBS.

And PBS is part of the media that's destroying our country.

In August 2017, French was one of several co-authors of the Nashville Statement, which affirmed "that it is sinful to approve of homosexual immorality or transgenderism and that such approval constitutes an essential departure from Christian faithfulness and witness."[20] The statement was criticized by pro-LGBT Christians and LGBT rights activists,[21][22] as well as by several conservative religious figures.[23][24]

THE NEWSHOUR is supposed to be for educated news consumers.  Yet they brought David French on yesterday to comment on student protesters.

David French is no different from Alex Jones.  Stop pretending otherwise.  You are mainstreaming voices that should not be mainstreamed. 

There was no reason in the world for that Alabama trash to be brought on THE NEWSHOUR for any reason at all but there he was and attacking protesters at that.  

Of course, THE NEW YORK TIMES hired him last year.  Again, there's no difference between him and Alex Jones so stop pretending that there is.

They'll put the crazies on but the former president of the National Lawyers Guild?  No, Marjorie Cohn won't be allowed on THE NEWS HOUR.  Saturday, she gave a speech and we'll note this section of the speech:

This reunion comes at an auspicious time, with college campuses erupting all over the country in solidarity with the Palestinian people. Once again, 55 years later, Stanford students are rising up for peace and justice. They have established a “People’s University” encampment and they are demanding that Stanford: (1) explicitly condemn Israel’s genocide and apartheid; (2) call for an immediate ceasefire, and for Israel and Egypt to allow humanitarian aid into Gaza; and (3) immediately divest from the consumer brands identified by the Palestinian BDS National Committee and all firms in Stanford’s investment portfolio that are complicit Israeli war crimes, apartheid and genocide.

At this moment in history, there are two related military occupations occurring simultaneously – 5,675 miles apart. One is Israel’s ongoing 57-year occupation of Palestinian territory, which is now taking the form of a full-fledged genocide that has killed more than 34,000 Palestinians. The other is at Columbia University, where the administration has asked the New York Police Department to occupy the school until May 17. Both occupations are fueled by the Zionist power structure. Both have weaponized antisemitism to rationalize their brutality.

The students at Columbia are demanding that the university end its investments in companies and funds that are profiting from Israel’s war against the Palestinians. They want financial transparency and amnesty for students and faculty involved in the demonstration. Most protesters throughout the country are demanding an immediate ceasefire and divestment from companies with interests in Israel. More than 2,300 people have been arrested or detained on U.S. college campuses.

Israel has damaged or destroyed every university in Gaza. But no university president has denounced Israel’s genocide or supported the call for divestment.

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement was launched in 2005 by 170 Palestinian civil society organizationswho described BDS as “non-violent punitive measures” to last until Israel fully complies with international law. That means Israel must (1) end its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantle its barrier wall; (2) recognize the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and (3) respect, protect and promote the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their land as mandated by UN General Assembly Resolution 194.

Boycotts are the withdrawal of support for Israel, and Israeli and international companies that are violating Palestinian human rights, including Israeli academic, cultural and sporting institutions. Divestment occurs when universities, churches, banks, pension funds and local councils withdraw their investments from all Israeli and international companies complicit in the violation of Palestinian rights. Sanctions campaigns pressure governments to stop military trade and free-trade agreements and urge them to expel Israel from international fora.

“A particularly important source of Palestinian hope is the growing impact of the Palestinian-led nonviolent BDS movement,” according to Omar Barghouti, co-founder of BDS. It “aims at ending Israel’s regime of military occupation, settler-colonialism, and apartheid and defending the right of Palestinian refugees to return home.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called the BDS movement an existential threat to Israel – an absurd claim in light of Israel’s arsenal of nuclear weapons.

The BDS movement is modeled largely on the boycott that helped end apartheid in South Africa. As confirmed by Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem, Israel also maintains a system of apartheid. Israel’s system is “an even more extreme form of the apartheid” than South Africa’s was, the South African ambassador told the International Court of Justice (ICJ) at the recent hearing on the legality of the Israeli occupation.

The U.S. has a long, proud history of boycotts – from the civil rights bus boycott to the United Farm Workers Union’s grape boycott. But at the behest of Zionists, anti-boycott legislation has been passed at the federal and state levels to prevent the American people from exercising their First Amendment right to boycott.

“The genocide underway in Gaza is the result of decades of impunity and inaction. Ending Israel’s impunity is a moral, political and legal imperative,” Palestine’s Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki told the ICJ. “Successive Israeli governments have given the Palestinian people only three options: displacement, subjugation or death; these are the choices, ethnic cleansing, apartheid or genocide.”

“Israel restricts every aspect of Palestinian life, from birth to death, resulting in manifest human rights violations and an overt system of repression and persecution,” al-Maliki said. “Through indiscriminate killing, summary execution, mass arbitrary arrest, torture, forced displacement, settler violence, movement restrictions and blockades, Israel subjects Palestinians to inhumane life conditions and untold human indignities, affecting the fate of every man, woman and child under its control.”

The Israeli military is poised to compound its genocidal campaign by ethnically cleansing 1.4 million people sheltering in Rafah, who have nowhere to flee.The violence in Gaza did not start on October 7, 2023, with the killing of some 1,200 Israelis by Hamas. It is the continuation of Israel’s brutal Nakba (Arabic for “catastrophe”) that began 75 years ago.

Let's go back to Tuesday's DEMOCRACY NOW! 

Gaza solidarity protests continue at college campuses across the nation — as does the police crackdown. On Monday, 43 arrests were reported at UCLA. At the University of California San Diego, video shows a crowd of student protesters blocking a police bus from leaving with arrested students. This comes after UC Riverside protesters announced Friday it has become the first UC campus to reach a deal with the school to start evaluating its ties with Israel.

At Harvard, students and faculty members rallied Monday after the administration threatened mass expulsions for hundreds of arrested protesters. This is Issa, a Palestinian student at Harvard who’s lost over 120 family members in Gaza.

Issa: “Over the last six months, more than 124 people in my family have been brutally killed by the Israeli occupation forces.”

Protesters: “Shame!”

Issa: “For the last six months, I have had to wake up to messages of my cousin being shot on his bike, of my aunt going blind because she can’t get medication for her blood pressure, of my entire uncle’s house falling down on them. … There is nothing, nothing this country can do, nothing the police can do, nothing this administration can do to me, that will scare me from fighting for justice!”

Harvard professor Walter Johnson spoke to students in solidarity with their protest.

Walter Johnson: “There’s no room for reasoned discussion about this action, if Harvard will not disclose its investments in the Occupied Territories, in the Israeli military and in Gaza.”

Nearby, students from a dozen high schools in the Boston area joined the MIT protest Monday as students there also defied a deadline to clear their encampment.

Students at SUNY Purchase in New York state celebrated late Monday as Gaza solidarity activists announced the school had met protesters’ demands “to disclose and cut ties with war crimes and genocide.”

Here in New York City, Columbia has canceled its main, university-wide graduation ceremony on May 15 amid mounting fallout from its mishandling of the protests. Students across New York and other protesters marched through city streets Monday, culminating in a rally near the glitzy, celebrity-filled Met Gala ceremony, where they were met with a heavy police presence.

The world has watched the brave US students.  And they've embraced the students.  ALJAZEERA  reports this morning:

Students at various European universities, inspired by the continuing pro-Palestinian demonstrations on campuses in the United States, have been occupying halls and facilities, demanding an end to partnerships with Israeli institutions because of Israel’s war on Gaza.

Several hundred protesters resumed a demonstration around the University of Amsterdam campus in the Netherlands where police were filmed baton-charging them and smashing their tents after they refused to leave the grounds.

As the protests resumed on Tuesday night, the demonstrators erected barriers to access routes watched over by a heavy police deployment.

Also in the Netherlands, about 50 demonstrators were protesting on Tuesday outside the library at Utrecht University and a few dozen at the Technical University of Delft, according to the ANP news agency.

In the eastern German city of Leipzig, the university said in a statement that 50 to 60 people occupied a lecture hall on Tuesday, waving banners that read: “University occupation against genocide.”

Protesters barricaded the lecture hall doors from the inside and erected tents in the courtyard, according to the university, which called in the police and filed a criminal complaint.

Let's note this from Tuesday's DEMOCRACY NOW!

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!,, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman, with Juan González.

We look now at how Gaza solidarity encampments are continuing on college campuses across the U.S. despite brutal police crackdowns. In the latest roundup, at least 43 students were arrested Monday at UCLA. The Intercept reports after New York police raided Columbia University encampment last week, some of the arrested students were denied water and food for about 16 hours. Two protesters were held in solitary confinement. On Monday, Columbia canceled its main university-wide graduation ceremony May 15th amidst mounting fallout from its mishandling of the peaceful protests.

Meanwhile, Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner visited the University of Pennsylvania Gaza solidarity encampment last week to speak with organizers and legal observers.

LARRY KRASNER: The First Amendment comes from here. This is Philadelphia. We don’t have to do stupid, like they did at Columbia. We don’t have to do stupid. What we should be doing here is upholding our tradition of being a welcoming, inviting city where people say things, even if other people don’t like them, because they have a right to say it in the United States, and where protesters also have an obligation to remain nonviolent and to engage in speech activity and in activity that does not become illegal.

AMY GOODMAN: That’s Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner at the encampment at UPenn.

This comes as more than 50 chapters of the American Association of University Professors, the AAUP, have issued a statement condemning the violent arrests by police at campus protests. This includes our next guest, Dartmouth professor, from former chair of Jewish studies, Annelise Orleck, who says police body-slammed her to the ground as she tried to protect her students when officers in riot gear cleared the peaceful encampment on Dartmouth’s campus. Annelise Orleck is a professor of history, women’s, gender and sexuality studies, former chair of Jewish studies at Dartmouth College, where she’s taught for more than 30 years. Professor Orleck was among dozens of students, faculty and community members arrested at the Dartmouth encampment last week. She’s been charged with criminal trespass and temporarily banned from portions of Dartmouth’s campus. She’s joining us now from Thetford, Vermont.

Professor Orleck, thanks so much for being with us. Can you take us through what happened that day? Where were you? Why did you decide to go to this encampment? And then what happened?

ANNELISE ORLECK: We were concerned that the students might be subject to some kind of violence, to — I didn’t really think there was going to be arrests, but I didn’t know for sure. The institution had sent out a very strict list of dos and don’ts earlier in the day, and it was clear that they were going to try to break up the encampment as quickly as possible. So, there were a whole bunch of us. There were dozens of faculty out there to try to support them.

And I was in a line of mostly older women, most of us Jewish, and the riot police came at us and started trying to literally physically push people off the Green. We were standing in front of our students, between the students and the riot police, in the hope of preventing violence. That didn’t happen. My students and I were subject to really violent handling in the course of our arrests. And it’s possible that I was subject to the most violent handling.

AMY GOODMAN: What happened to you?

ANNELISE ORLECK: I was videoing my students’ arrests. I was telling the police, “They’re just students. They’re not criminals. Leave them alone.” And suddenly, I was body-slammed from behind by these very large men in body armor, and hard enough that my feet left the ground for a few seconds. I landed on the ground in front of the protesters. They had taken my phone. And so I got up to try to demand my phone, and then they grabbed me under the arms, slammed me to the ground, dragged me facedown on the grass. You know, one guy had his knee on me. And honestly, Amy, I heard myself saying what I’d seen in videos so many times: “You’re hurting me. I can’t breathe. Stop.” And they said to me what they’ve said to so many victims of police brutality: “You’re talking. You can breathe.” They then put on the zip-tie cuffs on me, on a colleague, my colleague Christopher MacEvitt, and on many of our students so tightly that people have nerve damage, compressed nerves, severe pain. So, that’s what happened to us that night.

And the university has not dropped charges for criminal trespass or even asked the DA to drop the charges. So, we are all banned from the Green, which is the center of campus, from the administration building, where we would go to protest, and from the street on which the president’s house stands.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, Professor Orleck, the faculty met with the Dartmouth president yesterday, Monday. Could you talk about what was discussed and what was the message of the faculty to the administration?

ANNELISE ORLECK: The message of the faculty was: Drop all the charges now, apologize for the harm and trauma you’ve inflicted on the campus, promise that there will be no riot police called to campus again, change your policies on protest to be less restrictive, and, you know, to acknowledge constitutional protections on free speech, and get rid of the Palestine exception to free speech. People have to be able to talk about Palestine without being attacked by police with clubs, gas and God knows what else.

AMY GOODMAN: I want to ask you, Professor Orleck — you’re professor of history, of women’s, gender and sexuality studies, former chair of Jewish studies. President Biden is going to be giving an address on antisemitism today, issuing what they say is a clarion call to fight a swiftly rising tide of antisemitism across the United States and especially on college campuses. I put this question to the Israeli peace negotiator Daniel Levy, as well, but if you can talk about whether you see this rise, and also the equating of anti-Zionism with antisemitism, and the number of Jewish professors and students who are part of these protests?

ANNELISE ORLECK: Yes. I think this protest movement has a large and disproportionate percentage of Jewish students and faculty involved, because we all feel very strongly that we don’t want — we don’t want this genocide in Gaza in our name. And I was really struck by the fact that there was some reporting, I think, by The Guardian and BBC that I heard today that the people stirring up a lot of trouble and saying things outside the gates at Columbia were tied to the Proud Boys, that there were people who attacked the protesters at UCLA so violently and who had ties to Trump rallies. And I think it’s deeply ironic — deeply, deeply ironic — that the House Republicans who supported the January 6th assault on the Capitol, in which people were wearing Camp Auschwitz shirts and shirts with a logo that says “6MWE” — “6 million wasn’t enough” — and that they have become the defenders against antisemitism.

I heard nothing. There were Buddhist, Christian, Muslim and Jewish chaplains at our protest. The students were singing. They were chanting. Yes, there was some of the “river to the sea” chant that many Jews find so offensive and believe is a call to genocide. I accept the interpretation made by my Palestinian colleagues and students that this chant is about equality from the river to the sea and freedom. So, I don’t see any antisemitism. And you should know that the Jewish — many Jewish faculty at Dartmouth signed a letter insisting that the president not speak in our name and not use antisemitism to rationalize bringing these violent forces onto our campus.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, Professor, your message to the students who’ve led and organized these peaceful protests for months despite all of this repression?

ANNELISE ORLECK: Well, my students are — our students are holding another rally today on one of the parts of the campus we’re not banned from, which is the grass in front of the library. And I think their bravery is tremendous and is inspiring. And they really feel like this is the moral issue of their time, that there’s a genocide going on and that they can’t ignore it.

And again, I have colleagues at Columbia, colleagues at UCLA and in many parts of the country who have been part of the — not part of the encampments, but have visited the encampments, have spoken to the students there, have not felt threatened, have not felt antisemitism. Certainly at Dartmouth, we didn’t. And there’s a very powerful open letter from a Christian pastor who was there who’s saying the same thing. So, stop weaponizing antisemitism. It’s offensive, and it’s wrong.

AMY GOODMAN: Finally, Professor Orleck, how are you right now, having been beaten to the ground? And also, you’re banned from your campus, where you’ve taught for over 30 years, parts of it?

ANNELISE ORLECK: Yes, I was initially, as a condition of my bail, banned from the entire campus, but the college insisted that was a clerical error and, you know, gave lie to their argument that they can’t get charges changed or dropped by calling the local police department and getting them to change my bail so that I can teach. So I can now teach, but my building is one of the — on one of the streets that I’m banned from. So, I was having to run up the street yesterday in sunglasses really quickly trying to get to my class, you know, and not get arrested. It’s ridiculous.

And the Green is the very center of our campus. We all cross it many times a day. My kids grew up playing on the Green. The idea that we can’t have access to the beating heart of our campus is offensive again and, you know, just gives a sense — the president makes this argument that she’s trying to ensure that the Green is open to people with all views and that, you know, the five tents and 10 students who were camped out there would make the Green a place that only people of one view could be. Honestly, I think that’s what they did by making us frightened.

I’m still hurting. I have nerve damage in my wrist. I have an injured shoulder. I have bruising and swelling. And it’s very scary. And I’m getting better, but it’s crazy that I should be in this position for trying to protect my students. And I say the same for other faculty who were out there, including Chris MacEvitt, my colleague on the faculty, who was also arrested and also harmed.

AMY GOODMAN: Annelise Orleck, we want to thank you for being with us, professor of history, women’s gender and sexuality studies, former chair of Jewish studies at Dartmouth College, where she’s taught for more than 30 years, Professor Orleck among dozens of students, faculty, community members arrested at a Dartmouth encampment. I’m Amy Goodman, with Juan González, for another edition of Democracy Now!

Gaza remains under assault. Day 215 of  the assault in the wave that began in October.  Binoy Kampmark (DISSIDENT VOICE) points out, "Bloodletting as form; murder as fashion.  The ongoing campaign in Gaza by Israel’s Defence Forces continues without stalling and restriction.  But the burgeoning number of corpses is starting to become a challenge for the propaganda outlets:  How to justify it?  Fortunately for Israel, the United States, its unqualified defender, is happy to provide cover for murder covered in the sheath of self-defence."   CNN has explained, "The Gaza Strip is 'the most dangerous place' in the world to be a child, according to the executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund."  ABC NEWS quotes UNICEF's December 9th statement, ""The Gaza Strip is the most dangerous place in the world to be a child. Scores of children are reportedly being killed and injured on a daily basis. Entire neighborhoods, where children used to play and go to school have been turned into stacks of rubble, with no life in them."  NBC NEWS notes, "Strong majorities of all voters in the U.S. disapprove of President Joe Biden’s handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas war, according to the latest national NBC News poll. The erosion is most pronounced among Democrats, a majority of whom believe Israel has gone too far in its military action in Gaza."  The slaughter continues.  It has displaced over 1 million people per the US Congressional Research Service.  Jessica Corbett (COMMON DREAMS) points out, "Academics and legal experts around the world, including Holocaust scholars, have condemned the six-week Israeli assault of Gaza as genocide."   The death toll of Palestinians in Gaza is grows higher and higher.  United Nations Women noted, "More than 1.9 million people -- 85 per cent of the total population of Gaza -- have been displaced, including what UN Women estimates to be nearly 1 million women and girls. The entire population of Gaza -- roughly 2.2 million people -- are in crisis levels of acute food insecurity or worse."  THE NATIONAL notes, "At least 34,844 Palestinians have been killed and 78,404 injured in Israel's military offensive on Gaza since October 7, Gaza's Health Ministry has said. In the past 24 hours, 55 people were killed and 200 injured, the ministry said."  Months ago,  AP  noted, "About 4,000 people are reported missing."  February 7th, Jeremy Scahill explained on DEMOCRACY NOW! that "there’s an estimated 7,000 or 8,000 Palestinians missing, many of them in graves that are the rubble of their former home."  February 5th, the United Nations' Phillipe Lazzarini Tweeted:


April 11th, Sharon Zhang (TRUTHOUT) reported, "In addition to the over 34,000 Palestinians who have been counted as killed in Israel’s genocidal assault so far, there are 13,000 Palestinians in Gaza who are missing, a humanitarian aid group has estimated, either buried in rubble or mass graves or disappeared into Israeli prisons.  In a report released Thursday, Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said that the estimate is based on initial reports and that the actual number of people missing is likely even higher."

As for the area itself?  Isabele Debre (AP) reveals, "Israel’s military offensive has turned much of northern Gaza into an uninhabitable moonscape. Whole neighborhoods have been erased. Homes, schools and hospitals have been blasted by airstrikes and scorched by tank fire. Some buildings are still standing, but most are battered shells."  Kieron Monks (I NEWS) reports, "More than 40 per cent of the buildings in northern Gaza have been damaged or destroyed, according to a new study of satellite imagery by US researchers Jamon Van Den Hoek from Oregon State University and Corey Scher at the City University of New York. The UN gave a figure of 45 per cent of housing destroyed or damaged across the strip in less than six weeks. The rate of destruction is among the highest of any conflict since the Second World War."

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