This story by “Huff-Watcher” in FrontPage Magazine exposes anti-Semitism and anti-Israel hatred on the Huffington Post. Huff-Watcher documents these phenomena more fully in a longer report.
The FrontPage story makes two basic points. First, the Huffington Post “approves and tolerates user comments. . .that contain incendiary, hate-filled libels against Israelis and Jews, as well as links to anti-Semitic hate websites.” It does this even though, “since at least March 2008, the website has been pre-moderating all user comments.” Thus, all of the hateful and defamatory comments that have appeared since then were approved by the Huffington Post’s moderators.
Here are some charming examples:
Jews are evil. Israel runs the world. Lets kill ’em all and give the land back to Islam; result-perpetual peace. Seig Heil.”
By “pedrothemigrant,” 5/23/08
“Funny how [Israelis] had NO problem with wiping the [Palestinians] off the face of the earth until they discovered they might actually be able to strike back in a meaningful way. proof that bullies like this are nothing but cowards.”
By “peacekitten,” 1/2/09
“There’s a reason they [Jews] have been the most problematic group for thousands of years.”
By “Amennyc,” 1/4/09
“[W]omen holding limp little bodies of children in their hands, crying, as an Israeli soldier aims an AK.-47 at her head. With each civilian casualty Israel gets closer to the regime in Germany that provided the impetus for the creation of Israel.”
By “SkepticHume,” 1/3/09
“Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right, Here I am, stuck in the middle with Jooooz [Jews]”
By “JamesR.,” 11/22/08
“They [Jews] all need to be rounded up and gassed.”
By “markoze,” 12/30/08
According to Huff-Watcher, “all of these comments were posted by users whose accounts are still active (they have not been banned), some of whom HuffPost has allowed to post thousands of additional comments.” On the other hand, “HuffPost routinely bans other users who don’t violate its policies — some after as few as six comments — but dare to challenge or mock the radical leftists that the site attracts.”
The second point is that the Huffington Post’s reporting about Israel and American Jews “incites” much of the most anti-Jewish comments the website receives and duly publishes. For example:
Its headline story on 3/11/09 featured Charles Freeman’s claims that a Jewish conspiracy led him to withdraw his nomination to a national security post. HuffPost did not post any indication of the broad, bipartisan opposition to his nomination.
It uncritically uses biased Arabic “news” sources – including the jihadist-celebrating al Jazeera (also a past HuffPost advertiser) – as single-sources for its headlines. One example was its 5/29/09 article that used a little-known Arabic “news” source’s account of what it described as an “activist” that was killed by the Israeli military. 24 hours earlier, the “activist” was identified by CNN as a suspect in several deadly terror attacks, and that the Israeli military had attempted to arrest him. Instead, he opened fire on them, and was killed. None of this was covered in HuffPost’s depiction of the incident.
Its prominent positioning on 8/19/09 of a blood libel against Israel — that it murders Palestinians in order to harvest their organs — even though the “reporter” behind the story admitted in the article that he has “no idea… no clue” if the allegations are true or not. Soon thereafter, credible sources determined that these allegations were physically impossible, and further discredited the “reporter.” Yet HuffPost gave these stories little to no “play” (certainly nowhere near the prominence of the original blood libel).
Anti-Israel reporting is a staple of the MSM. However, the examples just cited show that the Huffington Post takes this practice to a new level of irresponsibility — essentially from dislike of Israel to raw hatred. The hatred that lies behind the Huffington Post’s reporting predictably produces the overtly anti-Semitic comments that it is then happy to publish.
Given the growing resurgence of anti-Semitism worldwide, HuffPost — like every other “legitimized,” advertiser-supported “newspaper” — is obliged to ensure that its “news” stories concerning Israel are fact-based and contextual. Further, HuffPost is obligated to enforce its nonpartisan comment moderation policy. In both of these regards, HuffPost is failing profoundly.
And, it should be added, intentionally.