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Take Action: The Bottomless Dishonesty of CNN on Palestine and Marc Lamont Hill Firing

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: Dr. Marc Lamont Hill, CNN network, International Day of Solidarity, academic, author, television, Palestinian human rights, Petition/Take Action, americans, equal rights, coverage/media bias, ethics, world, occupation crimes against Palestinians )

- 12 days ago -
CNN has fired contributor Marc Lamont Hill for a speech he gave on Palestinian rights at the UN. The speech can be found here.


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fly b (26)
Wednesday December 5, 2018, 9:35 am
The Bottomless Dishonesty of CNN on Palestine and Marc Lamont Hill Firing
Juan Cole, Informed Comment

03 December 18

NN has fired contributor Marc Lamont Hill for a speech he gave on Palestinian rights at the UN. The speech can be found here.

You can protest this outrageous firing at this petition site.

And here is a link to his book, Nobody: Casualties of America’s War on the Vulnerable, from Ferguson to Flint and Beyond, which everyone should buy and read.

CNN would have been under special pressure to fire Hill because he is a prominent African-American intellectual with a following in his own community, and the Israeli Ministry of Strategic Affairs (the propaganda arm of the Likud government) is worried about the boycott and sanctions movement spreading among American minorities who might sympathize with the oppressed Palestinians.

In his speech, Hill carefully explained all the ways in which Israeli Apartheid practices (my word, not his) devastate the basic human rights of the 5 million Palestinians living under Occupation. Not only are the 20 percent of Israeli citizens who are of Palestinian heritage second class citizens (and, increasingly, third class citizens), but those kept under the jackboot of the Israeli military in the Palestinian West Bank and in Gaza are kept stateless and without even the right to have rights.

These crimes, epochal and unparalleled in our own time, are being committed by Binyamin Netanyahu and his henchmen in plain sight, violating every principle of agreed-upon international law in the post-1945 period. (I say unparalleled because I know of no other government on earth in the 21st century deliberately keeping millions of persons stateless and depriving them of citizenship. Some countries give minorities a citizenship many of the latter do not want, but they still do have a passport and property rights). Israel occupied the Palestinian West Bank and the Gaza Strip in 1967 and refuses to relinquish them or grant citizenship to the inhabitants, ensuring they remain in the twilight zone of statelessness. They are by far the largest stateless population in the world, (Undocumented migrants are not stateless since they have citizenship in their home country). The Nazis made Jews stateless as a prelude to the Holocaust.

One way that the Israeli right wing gets away with these atrocities is to use techniques of blackballing, smearing, and propaganda to marginalize any voices they don’t like. Jewish American mainstream organizations like the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco secretly have created web sites and techniques for getting people fired or blocking their career advancement if they aren’t on board with Israeli colonization of the Palestinian West Bank. Canary Mission is even now targeting our undergraduate students, hoping to blight their lives for taking a stand for justice. I do not believe it is too much to say that Canary Mission is evil.

Pro-Israel bigots in the United States who freely speak about Arabs as “animals” or speak of “filthy Arabs” suddenly develop a saintly halo and accuse anyone who points to Netanyahu’s systematic dispossession of the Palestinians of being an anti-Semite. And they’ve been remarkably successful in marginalizing anyone who takes them on. They connive at unelecting congressmen and -women, they block appointments to the Federal government, and organize massive letter-writing campaigns to news outlets to pressure them into firing and blackballing journalists or changing the way they speak about Israeli colonizing activities. (The organization “CAMERA” targets journalists in particular).

This success is not because “Jews” are “powerful.” First of all, only a minority of Jewish Americans sympathize with the far right politics of the Likud Party. Jon Stewart used to complain tongue in cheek that if Jews were so powerful he ought to have been able to get off basic cable and have a network show.

The success is because right wing white people are so powerful, and many of them still have a latent belief in the goodness of colonialism and in the White Man’s Burden. Melanie McAlister argued brilliantly that for right wing Christian whites in the United States, the Israeli domination of the Palestinians is a symbolic reenactment of the Vietnam War, in which this time the “white people” (as they characterize themselves) win instead of losing. I.e., Israel functions as did those old Rambo movies. I was shocked to discover that my opposition to Bush’s Iraq War and critique of it as neo-colonialism was offensive to the Northeast power elite because they supported the war and apparently couldn’t deal with their unfaced assumption of racial superiority over Iraqis.

On the other side, a Christian Zionist such as Rick Santorum is paid to go on CNN and say things like, “If they want to negotiate with Israelis, and all the people who live in the West Bank are Israelis, they’re not Palestinians. There is no ‘Palestinian.’ This is Israeli land.”

That is all right in White America, but substitute Palestinians for Israelis and vice versa in Santorum’s vile quote and imagine what would happen to someone who said *that* on t.v.

Hill was raked over the coals by the bigoted and racist Israel lobbies for saying this:

“we have an opportunity to not just offer solidarity in words but to commit to political action, grassroots action, local action, and international action that will give us what justice requires. And that is a free Palestine from the river to the sea.”

You will notice that Palestine, i.e. the Palestinian West Bank and Gaza (the Green parts), stretches from the river to the sea:

It is interrupted by Israeli territory in between, of course.

Dishonest propagandists accused Hill of using the language of Hamas, which rejects Israel and has said, “Palestine is ours, from the river to the sea and from the south to the north.” But you’ll note that Hill did not say anything about north to south.

Hill admittedly does not think a two-state solution is any longer plausible. But what he was calling for was for the people living in the Occupied territories to be full citizens, and to have these citizenship rights pertain to everyone living between the river and the sea. He did not say anything about Israelis not having equal rights.

It is not a firing offense to ask for Palestinians living between the river and the sea to enjoy the full rights of citizenship. In fact, Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres pledged exactly that. Rabin shook Yasser Arafat’s and Bill Clinton’s hand over it on the White House lawn. Rabin was later assassinated by the sort of person now howling for Hill’s blood. Rabin’s vision of a Palestinian state and a two-state solution may well be impossible. That outcome has been engineered by Netanyahu and his thugs. But whatever the diplomacy, it cannot be allowed to keep Palestinians stateless and virtually without secure rights forever.

Hill was also slammed for urging Palestinian activism to oppose the Occupation. One of the standard Israeli propaganda techniques is to equate any resistance to their frankly fascist techniques of social control imposed on the colonized Palestinians with “terrorism.” There is nothing new or strange about this. The British in India considered Gandhi a terrorist. Of course the colonial state views opposition as terrorism.

That same dishonest columnist at The Forward managed to reconfigure Hill’s activism as violence. The fact is that international law recognizes the right of occupied peoples to mount even violent resistance to occupation militaries. But that isn’t what Hill was calling for. And then, any violence is then twisted around as violence toward civilians. And there you have it. Terrorism.

The golden magic circle of Hasbara (Zionist propaganda) gives us: resistance= violence= terrorism.

The only thing the Palestinians and their sympathizers can do to make Zionists happy is to bend over and allow themselves to be royally screwed– or better yet, allow themselves to be deported from their homeland of millennia at the hands of the Russian and Polish immigrants.

The Likudniks don’t actually want nonviolent resistance. That prospect horrifies them since they can’t do a magic circle number on it. When Mubarak Awad tried to start a center for Palestinian nonviolent resistance on the West Bank, the Israeli government illegally expelled him from his own home. One of the reasons the Israeli army is just shooting down unarmed Palestinians in cold blood inside Gaza is that they want to create the image of a violent confrontation where there is none (the marches have not involved clashes with the Israeli army).

CNN does a criminally negligent job of covering Palestine, giving us little better than Israeli propaganda. For the most part, it shapes the presentation of the story by simply ignoring it. But it also shapes the story with a systematically biased language intended to demonize the Palestinians and exonerate Israeli crimes against humanity.

Last March when Palestinians imprisoned in the open air concentration camp of Gaza by the Israeli army, navy and air force– and blockaded from key commodities– began marching to draw attention to their imprisonment, the Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his officer corps decided to deal with these protests by shooting down unarmed protesters, many of them women and children, with live fire, on the Gaza side of the border. Using live ammunition on protesters is a war crime. All the civilized countries in the world should have withdrawn their ambassadors and slapped severe economic sanctions on the Netanyahu regime in response.

CNN’s reporting on one of the first such Israeli crimes? “Gaza: 17 Palestinians killed in confrontations with Israeli forces – CNN”. That makes it sound as though the dead Palestinians had come over to the Israeli side of the border and attacked Israeli “forces” (Israel has an army, let us call it an army). But there is a problem with this framing. Those shot down were on the Gaza side of the border and there has been no direct physical encounter with Israeli troops. The dozens of Palestinians shot down in cold blood and the hundreds shot and injured in these demonstrations since March have largely gone unreported at CNN. Otherwise there’d be a segment every Friday afternoon.

In the first six months of the ongoing weekly rallies, Mezan reported that “150 Palestinians have been killed in the demonstrations. At least 10,000 others have been injured, including 1,849 children, 424 women, 115 paramedics and 115 journalists. Of those injured, 5,814 were hit by live ammunition…”

Amnesty International notes that many of the injuries inflicted on the protesters are to lower limbs and that:

“According to military experts as well as a forensic pathologist who reviewed photographs of injuries obtained by Amnesty International, many of the wounds observed by doctors in Gaza are consistent with those caused by high-velocity Israeli-manufactured Tavor rifles using 5.56mm military ammunition. Other wounds bear the hallmarks of US-manufactured M24 Remington sniper rifles shooting 7.62mm hunting ammunition, which expand and mushroom inside the body.

The nature of these injuries shows that Israeli soldiers are using high-velocity military weapons designed to cause maximum harm to Palestinian protesters who do not pose an imminent threat to them. These apparently deliberate attempts to kill and maim are deeply disturbing, not to mention completely illegal. Some of these cases appear to amount to wilful killing, a grave breach of the Geneva Conventions and a war crime.”

Again, the weekly carnage committed by the Israeli army in direct violation of the Geneva Convention of 1949 on the treatment of Occupied populations and in direct violation of the 2002 Rome Statute that created the International Court of Justice, is not covered by CNN. If you got your news from that source, you would not know anything is going on in Gaza.

Nor does CNN cover the tripling of Israeli squatter colonies on Palestinian land in the Palestinian West Bank during the Trump administration, nor the daily acts of violence, sabotage and usurpation committed by Israelis squatting on Palestinian land against Palestinians in their own homes.

This United Nations set of reports is what the real news from the Occupied Territories looks like.

If Netanyahu could shut the UN up, he would. His minions have shut up Marc Lamont Hill, a brave voice for freedom and human rights in our time who will now be replaced by the Rick Santorums.

fly b (26)
Wednesday December 5, 2018, 9:38 am
CNN Submits to Right-Wing Outrage Mob, Fires Marc Lamont Hill Due to His “Offensive” Defense of Palestinians at the U.N.
November 29 2018,

CNN on Thursday afternoon fired its commentator, Temple University Professor Marc Lamont Hill, after right-wing defenders of Israel objected to a speech Professor Hill gave at the U.N. on Wednesday in defense of Palestinian rights. CNN announced the firing just twenty-four hours after Hill delivered his speech.

Hill’s firing from CNN is a major victory for the growing so-called “online call-out culture” in which people who express controversial political views are not merely critiqued but demonized online and then formally and institutionally punished after a mob consolidates in outrage, often targeting their employers with demands that they be terminated. Hill’s firing, conversely, is a major defeat for the right to advocate for Palestinian rights, to freely critique the Israeli government, and for the ability of journalism and public discourse in the U.S. generally to accommodate dissent.

Conservatives claimed to be offended, traumatized and hurt by Hill’s political views on Israel and Palestine, which they somehow construed as being anti-semitic, and demanded that CNN fire him as punishment for the expression of those opinions. CNN honored the demands of those claiming to be victimized by exposure to Hill’s viewpoints by firing him as a political analyst.

On Wednesday, Hill appeared at an event of the U.N. Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, commemorating the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. During his speech, he accused the Israeli Government of practicing “settler colonialism” and apartheid, supported the international boycott movement against Israel (modeled on the one that ended South African apartheid in the 1980s), and called for a “free Palestine from the river to the sea.”

The right-wing outrage machine sprung into immediate action. The Washington Examiner’s Philip Klein accused Hill of a “long history of anti-Semitism,” adding: “The phrase ‘from the river to the sea’ has been a rallying cry for Hamas and other terrorist groups seeking the elimination of Israel, as a Palestinian state stretching from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea would mean that Israel would be wiped off the map.”

Some on the pro-Israel right who agitated for Hill’s firing have previously mocked what they call “outrage culture,” in which people are fired for controversial comments. The Washington Examiner’s Executive Editor and fanatical Israel defender, Seth Mandel, has long denounced and ridiculed such “mobs,” angrily objecting, for instance, when Disney recently fired director James Gunn for provocative Twitter remarks about pedophilia. Mandel used similarly derisive language (“internet outrage machine”) to denounce the removal by Business Insider of a column by Daniella Greenbaum that many found to be hurtful and traumatizing because it was, they insisted, transphobic.

Yet the very same Seth Mandel who finds “outrage mobs” so offensive when they target people who have similar political views to his own helped lead his own “internet outrage mob” to have Hill fired. This Stalwart Champion of Free Expression posted a series of tweets directed at CNN claiming that Hill was an anti-Jewish bigot and an advocate of genocide, and then posted multiple childish tweets with gifs celebrating Hill’s firing.

There are few people more craven or contemptible than those who pretend to support free expression and oppose the attempts of “internet mobs” to have those they disagree with fired, only to instantly change positions when it comes to those whose views diverge from their own. Seth Mandel is the poster child for such principle-free, duplicitous frauds, but he is far from alone.

Our discourse, our newsrooms, and our academic institutions are now drowning with people who demand that any speech be banned and suppressed that they regard as “hurtful,” “offensive,” “traumatizing,” or fostering a feeling of being “unsafe.” But what they really mean is that they want speech suppressed that they and those who agree with them find “hurtful” and “traumatizing.” Speech that makes their political enemies feel offended, uncomfortable or unsafe is heralded as brave and provocative.

That double standard is unsustainable. It’s empty and depraved. It is certain to consume not just one’s political enemies but also one’s political allies, as CNN’s firing of Marc Lamont Hill just demonstrated.

As I’ve often noted, the most baffling and repellent trait of censorship advocates is that they somehow convince themselves that the censorship standards they champion will only be used against the ideas they hate, and that the ideas they like will somehow be protected. As Matt Taibbi has been repeatedly documenting, this is the warped self-delusion that led liberals to demand that Silicon Valley companies
censor political speech only to now be shocked and angry that much of that online censorship is being directed at leftist and even liberal sites.

As I reported late last year, liberal demands that Facebook remove content that supposedly incites violence resulted, predictably, in the removal of thousands of Palestinian pages at the demands of the Israel government, while very few Israeli pages suffered similar repression. Censorship advocates reap what they sow, and it usually ends up consuming them and their own allies. It may be karmic justice, but it does massive damage to the ability to have free discourse, the right of dissent, and the flow of unpopular views.

Obviously, as a private corporation, CNN has the legal right to fire Hill – just as Google had the right to fire James Damore, Facebook has the legal right to ban Palestinians, Twitter had the legal right to ban various right-wing polemicists, and ABC had the legal right to fire Roseanne Barr. The question is not one of legality but politics and ethics: what are the consequences from demanding that adults be shielded from offensive ideas even in places where offense, upset and so-called “trauma” are inevitable?

The accusations launched against Hill – that his comments are anti-semitic and constitute advocacy of genocide – are so disingenuous and blatantly false that one is reluctant even to dignify them with a substantive critique. But the damage done to Hill’s reputation by this pro-Israel, pro-censorship internet mob requires that it be done.

Hill defended himself quite adeptly in a series of tweets explaining his speech. In sum, this shameful and cowardly action by CNN demonstrates two vital truths about free speech that have been proven over and over yet are so often ignored:

(1) Israeli citizens have greater liberty to criticize the Israel government than U.S. citizens have to criticize the Israeli government; in other words, criticisms of Israel that are common and mainstream in Israel are banned and punished in the U.S.; and

(2) the greatest threat to free speech in the west, and the most frequent and common form of censorship on college campuses, is aimed at those who criticize Israel and defend Palestinians, to the point where advocating for the boycott is a criminal offense; the firing of Professor Hill is just the latest data point proving his.

It is a requirement in U.S. discourse about Israel and Palestine that an absolute lie be affirmed: namely, that it’s still possible for a viable “two-state solution” to be created, where Palestine and Israel live side-by-side as sovereign states. The undeniable reality – that is now widely recognized in both Israel and Palestine, even as it’s forbidden to be acknowledge in mainstream U.S. precincts (CNN) – is that illegal Israeli settlements have grown so rapidly and have eaten up so much Palestinian land in the West Bank that such a solution is now essentially impossible, a fact even the U.N. acknowledges:

That leaves only two realistic choices: either (a) a single state “from the river to the sea” in which Israelis as a minority have full political rights while Palestinians are segregated and treated and repressed as second-class citizens, the very definition of “apartheid,” or (b) a single state “from the river to the sea” in which both Israelis and Palestinians share full and equal political rights.

Professor Hill, like all morally decent people, opposes apartheid. Therefore, he advocates a single state in which both Palestinians and Israelis have equal political rights. What is actually offensive is not Professor Hill’s comments but rather the suggestion that it is “anti-semitic” or constitutes advocacy of “genocide” to support equal political rights for all human beings, including Palestinians.

Indeed, Israel’s own former Prime Minister and Defense Minister, Ehud Barak, has repeatedly warned that Israelis will be a full-fledged “apartheid” state if it continues to exercise dominion over Palestinians. There is no doubt that Israel is well down that path. Professor Hill opposes that path – because it’s classic apartheid and repression, and it’s nothing short of reprehensible to accuse him of being a Jew-hater for his advocacy of basic principles of human rights and self-determination.

Moreover, Hill’s argument that it has long been viewed as acceptable for repressed and occupied groups to resist their occupiers, including through the use of violence, is indisputably true as a historical matter. Does anyone believe that if the Chinese Army invaded and occupied U.S. soil tomorrow that it would be immoral for Americans to resist by all means, including violence?

But this underscores a crucial point I’ve long noted: all forms of Palestinian resistance to Israeli occupation are deemed immoral in U.S. discourse. If Palestinians attack Israeli soldiers occupying their land, that’s called “terrorism.” If they advocate non-violent protest moments such as boycotts, that’s called “anti-semitism,” and is even criminalized in many places in the west, and punished on U.S. college campuses. If they hold peaceful protests on the border in their open-air prison in Gaza and have their own teenagers gunned down by Israeli snipers, that’s cheered as Israeli self-defense.

The only permissible position in U.S. discourse is the demand that Palestinians meekly submit to Israeli occupation. Any proffered justifications for Palestinian resistance are not just condemned but punished, as Professor Hill just learned.

This is not the first time CNN has fired one of its journalists for expressing views deemed “offensive” and “hurtful” by Israel defenders: recall that in 2010, CNN ended the 20-year career of Octavia Nasr, its Atlanta-based Senior Middle East News Editor, for the crime of expressing condolences and admiration upon the death of one of the Shiite world’s most beloved religious figures, highly controversial due to his affiliation with Hezbollah.

All that said, it is undeniably true that are many people – Jews and others – who felt genuinely offended, hurt, unsafe and even traumatized by Hill’s remarks. I know people in my own family, and life-long friends, who insist, with great credibility and sincerity, to experience all of those negative emotions when they hear someone advocating a one-state solution or a boycott of Israel as Professor Hill did this week.

Their offense, their hurt, their trauma, are real, at least in the very loose and sloppy ways those terms are now commonly used in the Age of Millennials to indicate negative reactions to political views one dislikes. It’s now quite common even in the places where ideas are meant to flow most freely – such as newsrooms and academic institutions – to demand that content be suppressed or punished if its expression “traumatizes” someone or makes them feel offended and “unsafe.” Though this self-protective mentality is often attributed to liberal millennials, it is in fact widely invoked across ideologies and generations to justify censorship.

Recall that in 2014, the University of Illinois rescinded its teaching offer to Palestinian-American Professor Steven Salaita after he posted tweets harshly criticizing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during Israel’s horrific, civilian-slaughtering attack on Gaza. That happened because pro-Israel donors, trustees and students claimed that they felt “traumatized” and offended by Salaita’s political views. Here’s how the New York Times explained Salaita’s punishment:

“What we cannot and will not tolerate at the University of Illinois,” Ms. Wise wrote last month, “are personal and disrespectful words or actions that demean and abuse either viewpoints themselves or those who express them.”

“It’s about feeling safe on campus,” Noah Feingold, a member of a pro-Israel student group, told The Forward. “This is a professor who tweeted that if you support Israel, you’re an awful person.”

This demand – used to justify Salatia’s effective firing as a scholar – that, even as an adult, one has the right at all times to feel “safe” from the expression of offensive ideas was the same one used by the right-wing movement during the Bush 43 years to try to have pro-Arab professors fired at Columbia University (a movement which newfound free expression activist Bari Weiss not only defended but helped to lead), on the ground that Jewish students felt “unsafe” and “traumatized” by the ideas they expressed:

If you’re someone who demands that speech be suppressed or punished if it’s “hurtful” or “offensive,” or that adults have the right to be shielded from “traumatizing” ideas that make them feel “unsafe,” you should congratulate yourself – regardless of your ideology – for your great victory in having Hill fired from CNN. There really is no doubt that the opinions he expressed, just as was true for Salaita and Nasr, were hurtful, traumatic and offensive to many.

But that’s the nature of having free thought and vibrant debate among adults: ideas that are offensive will sometimes be aired; adults will sometimes feel negative emotions from hearing the viewpoints of others; traumatizing events and thoughts will sometimes be discussed; journalism and political expression will sometimes be upsetting.

Nobody gets to create a standard where ideas that are “hurtful” and “traumatizing” to them are barred, whereas ideas that have the same effect on their political adversaries are permitted or celebrated. You either support a standard in which one has the right to engage in free political expression without punishment or you recognize that you are one who is laying the groundwork for this never-ending bickering, in which various online mobs relentlessly, and with increasing success, ensure that anyone expressing views they find upsetting are fired.

A petition has been created by The Intercept’s Ryan Grim demanding that CNN reverse its decision to fire Professor Hill. You can sign it here.

CNN: Reverse Firing of Marc Lamont Hill For Endorsing a One-State Solution to Israel-Palestine Crisis

Sue H (7)
Wednesday December 5, 2018, 12:47 pm

Colleen L (3)
Wednesday December 5, 2018, 12:48 pm
Thanks Fly

Ben O (138)
Thursday December 6, 2018, 7:06 am

fly b (26)
Saturday December 8, 2018, 12:57 pm
Cornel West Responds to CNN Firing Marc Lamont Hill
December 1, 2018

“All he’s saying is that Palestinian babies deserve the same rights as Israeli babies”.

Story Transcript

JAISAL NOOR: Supporters are coming to the defense of Temple University Professor Marc Lamont Hill, whose abrupt firing from CNN is causing backlash.

The news network let Hill go after a speech Wednesday during the UN International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

MARC LAMONT HILL: As we speak, the conditions on the ground for Palestinian people are worsening. In recent decades, the Israeli government has moved further and further to the right, normalizing settler colonialism and its accompanying logics of denial, destruction, displacement, and death. Despite international condemnation, settlement expansion has continued.

JAISAL NOOR: CNN might not be the only organization parting ways with Hill. Temple University, where Hill is a tenured professor, is reportedly also considering severing ties. In particular, critics noted the end of Hill’s speech.

MARC LAMONT HILL: So as we stand here on the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the tragic commemoration of the Nakba, we have an opportunity to not just offer solidarity in words, but to commit to political action. Grassroots action. Local action. And international action that will give us what justice requires. And that is a free Palestine, from the river to the sea.

JAISAL NOOR: Critics say “a free Palestine, from the river to the sea” is a Hamas slogan calling for the destruction of Israel. But as Hill notes, the phrase pre-dates Hamas’ creation by decades; and Hill has consistently supported a one-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict.

To discuss the backlash against Hill and the implications for supporters of Palestinian rights, we caught up with Cornel West.

CORNEL WEST: The important thing is we’ve got to stand with my dear brother Marc. All he’s saying is a Palestinian baby has exactly the same value as a Jewish baby; Jewish baby has the same value as a Palestinian baby. If we can’t have an egalitarian understanding of what it is for a people that have to struggle under ugly occupation on the one hand, and folk who themselves have been hated and despised, but have a responsibility to treating other people with dignity, in this case Palestinians, and to the degree to which we still are unable to have that kind of public dialogue recognizing the humanity on both sides is the degree to which we find ourselves impoverished. So I want to stand very closely and intensely with my dear brother Marc.

JAISAL NOOR: Hill has been accused of being a Hamas supporter, even though he embraces non-violent resistance like the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement.

MARC LAMONT HILL: Solidarity with the international community demands that we embrace boycotts, divestment, and sanctions as a critical means by which to hold Israel accountable for its treatment of Palestinian people. This movement, which emerges out of the overwhelming majority of Palestinian civil society, offers a nonviolent means by which to demand a return to the pre-’67 borders, full rights for Palestinian citizens, and the right of return as dictated by international law.

JAISAL NOOR: His comments are being equated with support for Hamas. What’s your response to that?

CORNEL WEST: Everybody knows that brother Marc is not a supporter of Hamas. You can love Palestinian people, you can support their rights and their dignity, and that doesn’t mean you’re a supporter of Hamas. I love Palestinian brothers and sisters. I support their dignity. I support their rights. That doesn’t mean that I’m a supporter of Hamas. And for somebody to make that kind of jump is ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. And I just find it sad that people would stoop to that level, to try to attack my brother or anybody else who stands with the Palestinian people. We would do exactly the same thing if there were a Palestinian occupation of Jewish brothers and sisters. That wouldn’t mean we supported Irgun, or a Jewish group killing innocent people. But we would support any people who are occupied. Kashmir. Tibet. Any people who are occupied. That includes our precious Palestinian brothers and sisters. So I’m very, very—in deep solidarity with brother Marc.

JAISAL NOOR: Thanks so much.

CORNEL WEST: Thank you so much.
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