Saturday, February 28, 2015

Politically Correct UCLA Hollywood Diversity Report Silent on Jewish Dominance

''The Hollywood Jews created a powerful cluster of images and ideas - so powerful that, in a sense, they colonized the American imagination.''  Neil Gabler "An Empire of Their Own"
The 2014 Hollywood Diversity Report released this week by the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies at UCLA suggests that the media and entertainment industry is dominated by white men.

The UCLA report finds that only 16.7 percent of film leads, 17.8 percent of film directors, and 11.8 percent of movie writers between 2011 and 2013 were people of color. What the report fails to mention is the obvious fact that most white men dominating Hollywood are Jews.

How dominant are Jews in the American media and entertainment industry? Jewish-American journalist Joel Stein answered this question as follows in a piece he wrote for the Los Angeles Times back in 2008:

How deeply Jewish is Hollywood? When the studio chiefs took out a full-page ad in the Los Angeles Times a few weeks ago to demand that the Screen Actors Guild settle its contract, the open letter was signed by: News Corp. President Peter Chernin (Jewish), Paramount Pictures Chairman Brad Grey (Jewish), Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Robert Iger (Jewish), Sony Pictures Chairman Michael Lynton (surprise, Dutch Jew), Warner Bros. Chairman Barry Meyer (Jewish), CBS Corp. Chief Executive Leslie Moonves (so Jewish his great uncle was the first prime minister of Israel), MGM Chairman Harry Sloan (Jewish) and NBC Universal Chief Executive Jeff Zucker (mega-Jewish). If either of the Weinstein brothers had signed, this group would have not only the power to shut down all film production but to form a minyan with enough Fiji water on hand to fill a mikvah.

The person they were yelling at in that ad was SAG (Screen Actors Guild) President Alan Rosenberg (take a guess). The scathing rebuttal to the ad was written by entertainment super-agent Ari Emanuel (Jew with Israeli parents) on the Huffington Post, which is owned by Arianna Huffington (not Jewish and has never worked in Hollywood.) The Jews are so dominant, I had to scour the trades to come up with six Gentiles in high positions at entertainment companies. When I called them to talk about their incredible advancement, five of them refused to talk to me, apparently out of fear of insulting Jews. The sixth, AMC President Charlie Collier, turned out to be Jewish.

I think the reason for such absolute Jewish dominance of the entertainment landscape may have something to do with the fact that "Jews Invented Hollywood" when some of the Jewish producers moved from East Coast to sunny Southern California for abundant, cheap, non-union labor. It's a fact that's been well documented in Neal Gabler's "An Empire of Their Own: How The Jews Invented Hollywood".  Gabler summed it up as follows: ''The Hollywood Jews created a powerful cluster of images and ideas - so powerful that, in a sense, they colonized the American imagination.''  The most famous of these "Hollywood Jews" were Adolph Zukor, Carl Laemmle, William Fox, Harry Cohn and the Warner Brothers. However, I still find it hard to explain how such dominance has been maintained over a century.

In my view, ethnic, racial and gender diversity sought by the authors of the UCLA Diversity report is a good thing. However, I believe diversity of opinion in the mainstream media and entertainment industry is far more important in terms of shaping of public opinion to serve the best interest of people of the United States. Such a diversity of views in the US media would have helped keep this country out of unnecessary costly wars such as the Iraq war in recent years.  That's the kind of diversity we all should be striving for.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Are Jews Culprits of Collapse on Wall Street?

Occupy Wall Street Anti-Semitic?

Jewish Power in US Congress

India's Washington Lobby Emulates AIPAC 

Gaza Compared With Nazi Concentration Camps

Media Manufacturing Consent

US Media Role in Supporting Iraq Invasion


Riaz Haq said...

INC: Hollywood's Lack of Diversity Looks a Lot Like Silicon Valley's

In a snapshot that looks an awful lot like Silicon Valley's tech sector, the Hollywood Diversity Report found that minorities in film lagged by more than 2-to-1 in lead roles and by 2-to-1 as directors, with women lagging by 2-to-1 as leads and by an overwhelming 8-to-1 as directors. TV was even worse: Minorities in leading roles on broadcast shows lagged by 6-to-1, while women lagged by more than 50 percent.

Although the report's co-authors, Darnell Hunt and Ana-Christina Ramon, admitted that they did not analyze data from 2014-2015, Hollywood hasn't fared much better in recent months, at the least in terms of diversity recognition in film. Look no farther than the overwhelmingly white and male Oscars ballot this year, prompting the Twitter backlash #OscarsSoWhite in the weeks leading up to the awards ceremony. (Director Ava DuVernay was notably snubbed for Selma, which was the first ever feature-length film made about Dr. Martin Luther King. And David Oyelowo, who played King in the movie, was also conspicuously absent from the list of Best Actor nominees.)

So what gives? It's not a lack of consumer demand for diversity. In fact, the study found that broadcast TV casts with 41 to 50 percent minority actors scored the highest ratings in both black and white households. Rather, the issue stems from the agencies, guilds, studios, and networks that do the hiring, according to the report's authors, which they described as "an industry culture that routinely devalues the talent of minorities and women."

Sound familiar? EBay, the most gender-diverse tech company based in Silicon Valley, is composed of 76 percent male workers globally. And in the world of entrepreneurship, only 4.2 percent of women founders receive venture capital, according to the Center for Talent Innovation. On top of that, just 15 percent of minority-owned firms received VC funding in 2013, compared to 22 percent of businesses overall, reported. Hurdles for women in business aren't just financial, either: Sexism in tech is alive and well, if these boneheaded comments are any indication.

The reason executive suites hire so few women and minorities may have to do with the fact that "people have a better eye for talent when it looks like them and has the same background as them," as Time Warner's executive director of diversity and corporate social responsibility told The Hollywood Reporter. And while those recruiting efforts may not be malicious, they do tend to make matters worse (and less diverse). Silicon Valley tech companies reflect a similar tunnel vision when they recruit from the same brand-name schools and startup circles again and again.

When will California's darlings finally make greater strides in hiring casts of characters that finally reflect reality? Not soon enough.

Anonymous said...

Silicon Valley, to my mind, is about equality, empowerment and equal access. Consequently, it's been very disturbing to see technology companies such as Apple and WhatsApp meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu while disregarding that his country treats its non-Jewish population like second-class citizens and implements harsh military rule on Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza.

Silicon Valley's model of empowerment and equality couldn't be more different from Israel's technology hub or its practices of technology disenfranchisement for Palestinians. The agreement between Gov. Jerry Brown and Netanyahu dangerously ignores the underlying differences and implicitly condones effective technology apartheid.

If Apple CEO Tim Cook were a Palestinian living in Ramallah, he would not be able to use any iPhone applications, including WhatsApp, on the local cell network. Globally, over 2 billion people have 3G access, including Israeli settlers living in the West Bank, but Palestinians are prohibited by Israeli military dictate.

If I want to Skype with a relative, it costs 25 cents per minute, but calling a nearby Israeli settler is only 2.3 cents per minute.

Want to live tweet a photo using 3G? Forget about it. In the West Bank, only Israeli settlers have that privilege.

Starting a company is no easy task for Palestinians. Mobile entrepreneurs? Try building a mobile startup without 3G.

On average, 10 Palestinian structures, including homes, are demolished weekly. A programmer living in Gaza needs to figure out how to work with only a few hours of electricity per day. Twenty-two unarmed Palestinians were killed by the Israeli military in the West Bank in 2013 alone. Amnesty International recently released a report titled "Trigger-happy Israeli army and police use reckless force in the West Bank."

It's time that we put aside all the excuses that support this discrimination and use technology for empowerment, connection and engagement. There's simply no reason that Palestinians should not be afforded the same technology opportunities as their Israeli counterparts.

Silicon Valley leaders missed an important opportunity to use these meetings to insist on equal opportunity and access for all people, including Palestinians committed to developing technology skills and startups like their Israeli counterparts. These business ties should be conditioned on Palestinians having their freedom, equal rights and equal access to technology and the startup opportunities that our industry represents.

Sam Jadallah is a Silicon Valley entrepreneur and investor. He wrote this for

Riaz Haq said...

Leonard Nimoy, Jewish-American star of Star Trek who passed away last week, to Israelis and Palestinians: “I reach out to you as someone who is troubled to see the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians continue apparently without an end in sight.
“In fact, there is an end in sight. It’s known as the two-state solution–a secure, democratic Israel as the Jewish State alongside an independent Palestinian state. Even Israel’s nationalist Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, has come to see this as the shape of the future. The problem is how to reach that end point. It’s something we should be concerned about–not only as world citizens, but as Americans.
“You might recall the episode in the original Star Trek series called, Let That Be Your Last Battlefield. Two men, half black, half white, are the last survivors of their peoples who have been at war with each other for thousands of years, yet the Enterprise crew could find no differences separating these two raging men.
“But the antagonists were keenly aware of their differences–one man was white on the right side, the other was black on the right side. And they were prepared to battle to the death to defend the memory of their people who died from the atrocities committed by the other.
“The story was a myth, of course, and by invoking it I don’t mean to belittle the very real issues that divide Israelis and Palestinians. What I do mean to suggest is that the time for recriminations is over. Assigning blame over all other priorities is self-defeating. Myth can be a snare. The two sides need our help to evade the snare and search for a way to compromise.
“The Middle East is only getting more tumultuous. The upheavals throughout the region show that what happens in the Middle East can’t help but affect us in the United States. This year, we’ve seen oil prices rise sharply and America become involved militarily in Libya. The cost to American lives and our economy continues to rise at a time when unemployment and deficits are sapping our country’s strength.”

Tambi Dude said...

The political request extends to islam also when Obama does not want to name ISIS for what they are: Islamic and JIhadis.

There is lot of discussion in the internet going on about the PC when it comes to Islam. Want me to show some links.

Anonymous said...

The all-out attack by the Jewish Supremacist “Anti-Defamation League” (ADL) on actor Gary Oldman for daring to mention that Jews run Hollywood has highlighted the fact that Jews can routinely boast about that fact—but if a Gentile says the same thing, they are attacked as “anti-Semites.”

Oldman (known for roles like Harry Potter’s Sirius Black and spy George Smiley in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy), when asked in a recent Playboy interview about actor/producer Mel Gibson’s earlier remarks about Jews, said that “Mel Gibson is in a town that’s run by Jews and he said the wrong thing because he’s actually bitten the hand that I guess has fed him.”

For this “sin” Oldman was condemned by the ADL and immediately issued a grovelling apology, saying that he hoped his “heartfelt apology would be received as genuine as he intended it to be” and that he has “nothing against Jews.”

This apology was however not good enough for the ADL’s Abe Foxman, who in a press statement said that “We have just begun a conversation with his managing producer”—in other words that the Jewish Supremacists will now be seeking to smash Oldman’s career.

“While his apology may be heartfelt, Mr. Oldman does not understand why his words about Jewish control were so damaging and offensive, and it is therefore insufficient,” Foxman added.

However, Foxman has never said anything when his fellow Jews have said exactly what Oldman said—and even more.

For example, the Jewish journalist Joel Stein, who used to write for the Los Angeles Times and who currently writes for Time magazine, wrote a large article in the LA Times on December 19, 2008, titled “Is Hollywood Run by Jews? You Bet.”


Significantly, Stein ended his boastful article with the following illuminating comment:

But I don’t care if Americans think we’re running the news media, Hollywood, Wall Street or the government. I just care that we get to keep running them.

Stein has not has his “employers spoken to” by Foxman and the ADL, unlike the unfortunate Gary Oldman.

The difference is, of course, that the Jews are perfectly happy as long as it is they who boast about their control of Hollywood—but woe betide any Gentile who dares to say the same thing—they are just anti-Semites.

Stein is not the only prominent Jewish journalist to have boasted about Jewish control of Hollywood.

In August 1996, the Jewish magazine Moment (which describes itself as “North America’s premier Jewish magazine, founded in 1975 by Nobel Prize laureate Elie Wiesel”) ran a front page article titled “Jews Run Hollywood—So What?” written by Jewish journalist Michael Medved.


Medved said in the article that:

It makes no sense at all to try to deny the reality of Jewish power and prominence in popular culture. Any list of the most influential production executives at each of the major movie studios will produce a heavy majority of recognizably Jewish names.

The article then describes how the Jew Michael Eisner, the Head of Walt Disney studios only hires “highly paid Jewish moguls” as producers such as Jeffrey Katzenberg, Michael Ovitz, Joe Roth (former head of 20th Century Fox).

Medved also reveals how Jews also took over the only major Hollywood studio which was run by Gentiles: the Walt Disney Corporation:

The famous Disney organization, which was founded by Walt Disney, a gentile Midwesterner who allegedly harboured anti-Semitic attitudes, now features Jewish personnel in nearly all its most powerful positions.

Jerome Goldstein said...

[In my view, ethnic, racial and gender diversity sought by the authors of the UCLA Diversity report is a good thing. However, I believe diversity of opinion in the mainstream media and entertainment industry is far more important in terms of shaping of public opinion to serve the best interest of people of the United States. Such a diversity of views in the US media would have helped keep this country out of unnecessary costly wars such as the Iraq war in recent years. That's the kind of diversity we all should be striving for.]

Mr Haq,
Not all Jews think the same or have similar opinions. Jews themselves are a very diverse lot. There are Russian, western and eastern Europeans, African, Middle eastern Jews. And then even though we may be of the same religion we have the entire spectrum of we practice our faiths from being atheist to orthodoxy.

For you to put us in one blanket as having a unified opinion shows lack of depth in your contrived analysis.

Blaming Jews for the wars the US has fought recently is prejudicial coming from what I trust is a Pakistani or Pakistani born Blogger.

Have you read your own anti India rhetoric? For most of its existence how has Pakistan been ruled and how diverse was the establishment in Pakistani before you fought multiple wars with India? I take it that those were costly and on top of it Pakistan lost them all because the 1947 Indian Kashmir still belongs to India. Moreover, the 1947 East Pakistan ceased being Pakistan since 1971.

Funny how a country like the US, which allows you to practice your Muslim Faith freely is hated most by Pakistanis and China which curtails its muslims from freely demonstrating or praying is liked most by Pakistanis!

Riaz Haq said...

JG: " For you to put us in one blanket as having a unified opinion shows lack of depth in your contrived analysis. "

Re-read carefully what I wrote. Here it is:

"In my view, ethnic, racial and gender diversity sought by the authors of the UCLA Diversity report is a good thing. However, I believe diversity of opinion in the mainstream media and entertainment industry is far more important in terms of shaping of public opinion to serve the best interest of people of the United States. Such a diversity of views in the US media would have helped keep this country out of unnecessary costly wars such as the Iraq war in recent years. That's the kind of diversity we all should be striving for."

Do I not make a clear distinction between diversity of ethnicity/race/gender and diversity of view?

Now, do you disagree that there was near unanimity of views in the mainstream US media in support of Iraq war to oust Saddam? Would diversity of views have helped prevent this disastrous war?

Let me share with you a recent quote from Jon Stewart on Daily Show after NBC's Brian Williams was caught lying:

“Finally, someone is being held to account for misleading America about the Iraq war. It might not necessarily be the first person you’d want held accountable on that list. But never again will Brian Williams mislead this great nation about being shot at in a war we probably wouldn’t have ended up in if the media had applied this level of scrutiny to the actual f*cking war.”

Also watch this video:

Anonymous said...

I remember when mel gibson make "passion of the christ", how all hollywood read jews went bezerker on him.

Riaz Haq said...

CBS News Investigative Journalist Explains How #American Mainstream Media Brainwashes The Masses: via @IamNotSirius

Did you know that only a handful of corporations, 6 to be exact, control over 90 percent of the media? That means nearly everything we hear on the radio, read in the news, and see on television (including ‘news’). I’m talking about General Electric (GE), News-Corp, Disney, Viacom, Time Warner, and CBS.

Ever since Operation Mockingbird, a CIA-based initiative to control mainstream media, more and more people are expressing their concern that what we see in the media is nothing short of brainwashing. This is also evident by blatant lies that continue to spam the TV screen, especially when it comes to topics such as health, food, war (“terrorism“), poverty and more. Corporate interests always seem to get in the way.

Multiple celebrities have even spoken out about this. Roseanne Barr, for example, said that MK Ultra rules in Hollywood. MK Ultra was (and I believe still is) a program run by the CIA to practice methods of mind control and experiment on human beings. (source)(source)

Filled with clever marketing tactics designed to tell us what to think and what to buy, mainstream media manufactures public opinion and popular trends. It’s time to really take a look at what’s going on here and consider the type of information we’re being bombarded with.

In the below eyeopening talk, veteran investigative journalist (and Former CBS NEWS investigative reporter) Sharyl Attkisson shows how “astroturf,” or fake grassroots movements, funded by political, corporate, or other special interests very effectively manipulate and distort media messages.

Riaz Haq said...

Excerpts of an NPR Fresh Air interview with Viet Thanh Nguyen, Pulitzer Prize winning author of "The Sympathizer":

one of the first movies that I remember watching was "Apocalypse Now." I was probably about 10. And I think that was the first indication, also, that I had that there was something called this war and that this was how Americans saw this war as one that had divided them. And that was my first glimmering that there was something like a civil war happening in the American soul and that we as Vietnamese people were caught up in that because I watched that movie as a good, American boy who had already seen some American war movies - John Wayne in World War II.

And I was cheering for the American soldiers until the moment in "Apocalypse Now" where they started killing Vietnamese people. And that was an impossible moment for me because I didn't know who I was supposed to identify with, the Americans who were doing the killing or the Vietnamese who were dying and not being able to speak?

And that moment has never left me as the symbolic moment of my understanding that this was our place in an American war, that the Vietnam War was an American war from the American perspective and that, eventually, I would have to do something about that.


Their function is to literally just be stage props for an American drama. And my narrator understands this. And he understands it very intellectually and viscerally that what is happening here is that Hollywood is the unofficial ministry of propaganda for the Pentagon, that its role is to basically prepare Americans to go fight wars by making them focus only on the American understanding of things and to understand others as alien and different and marginal, even to their own histories, right?

And so his belief is that he can somehow try to subvert this ministry of propaganda, this vast war epic that is going to continue to kill Vietnamese people in a cinematic fashion, which is simply the prelude to actually killing Vietnamese people in real life. So he believes that he can try to make a difference. And, of course, the humor and the tragedy is that he can't.


you know, that the United States lost the war, in fact, in 1975. But for the very same reason that the United States was able to wage a war in which it lost 58,000 American soldiers, which is a human tragedy, but was able to create the conditions by which 3 million Vietnamese people died of all sides and 3 million Laotians and Cambodians died during those years and in the years afterwards.

For the very same reasons that the industrial power of the United States is able to produce this vast inequity of death, that's the same reason that the United States, in the years afterward, through its incredibly powerful cultural industry, is able to win the war in memory because wherever you go outside of Vietnam, you have to deal with American memories of the Vietnam War. Inside Vietnam, you have to confront Vietnamese memories. But outside, wherever I've gone and talked about the Vietnam War and memory, one of the first questions that I get is what do you think of "Apocalypse Now?" So...


Americans are preoccupied with their own experiences. That's an exact replication of the mindset that got us into Vietnam and that has now allowed Americans to remember the Vietnam War in a certain way that makes it an America war.

Riaz Haq said...

Feel the power of propaganda...Whoever owns the media gets the top ratings
Groups Americans like best
1 Jews
2 Catholics
3 Evangelicals
4 Buddhists
5 Hindus
6 Mormons
7 Atheists
8 Muslims

Riaz Haq said...

#Hollywood's Oliver Stone’s #American History: ‘We’re Not under Threat. We Are the Threat’ via @grtvnews #terrorism

As he launches his new TV series offering a critical view of US overseas exploits, the film director tells MEE he didn’t always see it that way

American controversies are Oliver Stone’s forte.

The Hollywood movie director has turned his cameras on the assassination of John F Kennedy, the Vietnam War and the 9/11 attacks.

But, when researching his television series, The Untold History of the United States, it was American exploits in the Middle East that left him with the most lasting impression, he told Middle East Eye on Wednesday.

“When I studied the untold history, one thing that really hit me hard was the history of our involvement in the Middle East,” Stone said.

“It was a nefarious involvement.”

Stone traces Washington’s hand in the region back to the 1930s, but he says it reached a peak when President George HW Bush sent hundreds of thousands of US troops to liberate Kuwait after the Iraqi invasion of 1990.

The Soviet Union had recently collapsed and the region was wide open to a lone superpower, he said.

“We never got out of there. Once we were in, we’re in forever,” Stone said.

“We’ve destabilised the entire region, created chaos. And then we blame ISIS for the chaos we created,” he added, referring to the Islamic State (IS) group that now rules swathes of Iraq and Syria.

Stone researched and wrote the series and book with Peter Kuznick, a scholar at the American University who specialises in the US nuclear strikes on Japan that ended the Second World War.

“It’s all about the oil. You remember the bumper sticker: What is our oil doing under their sand?” Kuznick told MEE.

Washington’s hunger for fuel underpins its alliance with Saudi Arabia, the CIA-backed coup against Iranian prime minister Mohammad Mosaddegh in 1953 and its support for anti-Soviet religious militants in Afghanistan in the 1980s, he said.

“We create these messes, then we have a grand military plan to solve them. And the military solutions just don’t work,” he said.

The views of Stone and Kuznick are not likely to raise eyebrows on the streets of Cairo, Moscow or Paris.

But in the US they are not mainstream.

The way Stone tells it, Americans live in a bubble and are spoon-fed information by a school system, politicians and a media that portrays the US as a beacon of stability and a force for good in the world.

In one famous example, former President Ronald Reagan called the US a “shining city on a hill”.

“It’s very comforting to be an American,” Stone said.

You get the sense that you are safe and have prosperity of material goods, and that you have enemies everywhere – Russia, China, Iran and North Korea.

You get into this cocoon where you have a big country, two oceans, but that you’re always under threat.

Stone says he understands this well because he lived it himself.

He was raised in New York, the son of a Republican stockbroker, Louis Stone. He was always creative – he often wrote short plays to entertain his family – but never questioned how his history teachers puffed up the US, he said.

“I had only gotten a part of the story, which emphasised American exceptionalism, America as a selfless and beneficial country to the world,” he said.

In 1967, Stone volunteered to fight in the US Army and served in Vietnam. He was wounded twice and was honoured with a Bronze Star for heroism and a Purple Heart for his service.

“I came back from Vietnam puzzled, completely confused about what was going on there,” he said.

“But I did get a heavy dose of the doublespeak, the militarese talk.”

He started asking questions and reading up on “progressive history” at the same time as he studied filmmaking at New York University under Martin Scorsese and other teachers, he said.

These ideas fed his politically orientated filmmaking in the 1980s.

Riaz Haq said...

#Hollywood's Oliver Stone’s #American History: ‘We’re Not under Threat. We Are the Threat’ via @grtvnews #terrorism

Salvador (1986) was set in a 1980s war in Central America. Platoon (1986), Stone’s directorial breakthrough movie, dramatised a young soldier’s tour of duty in Vietnam, starring Charlie Sheen.

He continued probing that war in Born on the Fourth of July (1989), starring Tom Cruise. JFK (1991) showed his conspiracy theories about the former president’s killing; movies such as Nixon (1995) and W (2008) tackled subsequent commanders-in-chief.

The release of his movie about NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden has been delayed until 2016, he said.

He has also interviewed foreign statesmen who defy Washington – from the Cuban revolutionary Fidel Castro to the ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The Untold History of the United States, a 10-part documentary series and a 750-page book, offers Americans an alternate perspective on US history from the Second World War through the Cold War to the present day.

Stone says he wants to counter the “educational crime” of misleading American schoolchildren.

“American exceptionalism has to be driven out of our curriculums,” he said.

“We’re not under threat. We are the threat.”

Riaz Haq said...

In a recent roundtable conversation with the New York Times, a handful of showrunners and entertainment professionals were assembled to discuss the topic of Muslim representation on television. Quantico showrunner Joshua Safran said that it’s policy on his show to never feature Muslims as terrorists, and Howard Gordon, the co-creator of Homeland and an executive producer of 24, expressed his own concerns that his hit shows can enable regressive thinking and stoke xenophobic fears. When Gordon was asked if he was worried about Homeland being fodder for increased attacks against Muslims, Gordon said, “The short answer is, absolutely, yes,” before elaborating with the longer version.

On Homeland, it’s an ongoing and very important conversation.
For instance, this year, the beginning of it involves the sort of big business of prosecuting entrapment. It actually tests the edges of free speech. How can someone express their discontent with American policy — even a reckless kid who might express his views that may be sympathetic to enemies of America, but still is not, himself, a terrorist, but is being set up to be one by the big business of government?
For me to answer, personally, that question, it’s a difficult one. 24 having been the launching point for me to engage in these conversations, which I have been having for 10 years, and being very conscious about not wanting to be a midwife to these base ideas. We’re all affected, unwittingly, by who we are and how we see the world. It requires creating an environment where people can speak freely about these things. It requires this vigilant empathy.

It has never been easy to put a Muslim character on American screens.

Even in this TV renaissance, most characters are on shows that rely on terrorism — or at least, terrorist-adjacent — story lines. Other kinds of Muslim characters are woefully absent across the dial. Could that change now, after a divisive presidential campaign that included vows by Donald J. Trump to stop Islamic immigration? Or will it be more difficult than ever?

Riaz Haq said...

Trevor Noah Accuses #Hollywood of negative stereotyping of #Muslims #Blacks. #MerylStreep #Trump via @thedailybeast

“I thought it was a little weird last night that Hollywood celebrated itself for being progressive but ignored how much they reinforce negative stereotypes,” Noah added. “Think about it: In Hollywood, Middle Easterners are almost always terrorists. Black people are gangsters and slaves. It’s not like there aren’t other diverse stories to tell. Just look at ‘Hidden Fences,’ you know?”

Trevor Noah’s coverage of the Golden Globes showdown between Meryl Streep and Donald Trump was nothing if not surprising Monday night.

After an extended riff on the confusion that ensued between Fences and Hidden Figures—leading both Jenna Bush Hager and Michael Keaton to say “Hidden Fences”—The Daily Show host moved on to the most-talked about moment of the night: Streep’s fiery acceptance speech.
Noah admitted that Streep’s unexpectedly strong takedown of President-elect Donald Trump was “powerful” and a “highlight” of her already “distinguished” career. “Except for this one tiny part,” he continued, which, “like her character in Florence Foster Jenkins, was tone-deaf.”
The comedian was referring to the moment when Streep declared, “Hollywood is crawling with outsiders and foreigners. And if you kick ’em all out, you’ll have nothing to watch but football and mixed martial arts, which are not the arts.”

“I understand what Meryl Streep was trying to do, and I don’t know if I could have done better, but here’s the thing I feel like we could all learn as people,” Noah said. “You don’t have to make your point by shitting on someone else’s thing, because a lot of people love football and the arts.” He noted that he spent his Sunday watching football and then the Golden Globes.

To make his point, Noah joked that the NFL commissioner “acts” like he cares about concussions. He went on to undercut himself by saying that to focus on that part of the speech “undermines” her “larger point” about “respect” and “empathy.” But the bulk of his commentary centered on a lack of inclusiveness by Streep—not Trump.
Remarkably, Noah did not even bring up Trump’s petty overreaction to Streep’s speech until the second segment of his show, and when he did it was merely as a preamble to a piece about the president-elect’s response on Russia’s election hacks.

Riaz Haq said...

Russian news may be biased – but so is much western media
Piers Robinson
Manipulation of the news for propaganda purposes is not the prerogative of the west’s enemies. It’s vital to look at all media, including the UK’s, with a critical eye

Whatever the accuracy, or lack thereof, of RT and whatever its actual impact on western audiences, one of the problems with these kinds of arguments is that they fall straight into the trap of presenting media that are aligned with official adversaries as inherently propagandistic and deceitful, while the output of “our” media is presumed to be objective and truthful. Moreover, the impression given is that our governments engage in truthful “public relations”, “strategic communication” and “public diplomacy” while the Russians lie through “propaganda”.

Neither of these claims has significant academic support. A substantial body of research conducted over many decades highlights the proximity between western news media and their respective governments, especially in the realm of foreign affairs. For reasons that include overreliance on government officials as news sources, economic constraints, the imperatives of big business and good old-fashioned patriotism, mainstream western media frequently fail to meet democratic expectations regarding independence. In our own study of UK media coverage of the 2003 Iraq invasion, Manchester University found that most UK mainstream media performed to reinforce official views rather than to challenge them.

As for the supposedly benign communication activities of our own governments – again, there are ample grounds to challenge the understanding that the “strategic communication” activities of our governments can be understood as free from the kind of manipulative “propaganda” of which the Russian government is accused. Indeed western governments frequently engage in strategies of manipulation through deception involving exaggeration, omission and misdirection. This was recently observed quite clearly during the run-up to the Iraq war when intelligence was manipulated in order to mobilise public support for the Iraq invasion.

Moreover, the recent Chilcot report describes how, in the early days after 9/11 “regime-change hawks” in Washington argued that “a coalition put together for one purpose (against international terrorism) could be used to clear up other problems in the region”. Tony Blair had discussed how phases 1 and 2 of the “war on terror” would require a “dedicated tightly knit propaganda unit”.

One might reasonably conclude from all this evidence that the western public fell foul of a major deceptive propaganda campaign which involved exploiting terrorism threats in order to “clear up other problems” and which was instigated by our own governments and communicated through “our” media. Propaganda and deception is not, it would appear, the sole preserve of non-western states; it is alive and well in western democracies.

These are confusing times for consumers of the news, and the issue of which media outlets should be trusted is as demanding and critical as ever. Given the level of conflict and potential conflict in the world today, plus pressing global issues regarding environmental crisis, poverty and resources, it is essential that people learn to navigate the media and defend themselves against manipulation. The first step towards becoming more informed is to avoid seeing our governments and media as free from manipulation while demonising “foreign” governments and media as full of propagandistic lies.

Riaz Haq said...

Slavery and the Jews
A review of The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews: Volume One


Almost as soon as it appeared, in 1991, The Secret Relationship generated a controversy that centered more on its intentions than its scholarship. The noise level was heightened in 1993 by the turmoil that swirled around Professor Tony Martin, of Wellesley College. A tenured professor in Wellesley's Department of Africana Studies, Martin assigned to one of his classes portions of the book, which singles out Jews for special prominence in the Atlantic slave trade and for having played a particularly prominent role in the enslavement of Africans in the Americas. He was accused of anti-Semitism, and wrote a brief book to refute the charges. The title of Martin's book, The Jewish Onslaught: Despatches From the Wellesley Battlefront, gave a clear preview of his opinions. It was a mixture of discussion, factual refutation, and angry recrimination. This last predominated, with paragraphs that opened using language like "To the Jews, and to their favourite Negroes who have insisted on attacking me I say . . ." His views on The Secret Relationship's use of historical materials amounted to a barrage of enthusiastic endorsements. Ironically, Martin's assertion that "Jews were very much in the mainstream of European society as far as the trade in African human beings was concerned" was very close to what many Jewish scholars had claimed some thirty years before.

Martin, in one of his endorsements, made a startling assertion concerning slave ownership by Jews: "Using the research of Jewish historians, the book suggests that based on the 1830 census, Jews actually had a higher per capita slave ownership than for the white population as a whole." The Secret Relationship does in fact approach making that suggestion, and since the claim would appear to be a pivotal one, it is worth examining.

In order to assess such a claim, one must resort to details. Martin's purported actuality is wrong on its face if applied to the "white population" of the United States "as a whole," because in 1830 only a handful of white northerners still owned slaves. Jews were concentrated in the North, and they constituted a very small minority there. Even if the statement is taken as applying only to the states in the American South that had not adopted gradual emancipation laws, it remains badly flawed. A careful and honest footnote in The Secret Relationship reveals that "Jewish scholars" had concluded that Jews in the South lived mostly in towns and cities. Neither this book nor Martin's explains the significance of this fact. In actuality, slave ownership was much more common in southern urban areas than in the southern countryside. The relatively high proportion of Jewish slaveholding was a function of the concentration of Jews in cities and towns, not of their descent or religion. It is also the case that urban slaveholders of whatever background owned fewer slaves on average than rural slaveholders, including those on large plantations. Thus the proportion of slaveholders has never been an accurate measure of the social or economic importance of slaveholding, unless it is assessed on a broadly regional or state-by-state basis. In this instance, as in so many others, the statistical data do not stand up and cry out their own true significance.

Riaz Haq said...

Kyrie Irving Boosts Antisemitic Movie Peddling ‘Jewish Slave Ships’
The video is based on a venomously antisemitic book which asserts that "many famous high-ranking Jews" have "admitted" to "worship[ing] Satan or Lucifer."

HOURS BEFORE ANOTHER Brooklyn Nets loss on Thursday, noted “free-thinker” and basketball player Kyrie Irving took to Twitter to boost a movie and book, Hebrews to Negroes, stuffed with antisemitic tropes.

The 2018 film was directed by Ronald Dalton, Jr., and based upon his 2015 book of the same name. A description for the film states that it “uncovers the true identity of the Children of Israel,” while a similar one for the book reads, “Since the European and Arab slave traders stepped foot into Africa, blacks have been told lies about their heritage.” Both suggest Hebrews to Negroes espouse ideas in line with more extreme factions of the Black Hebrew Israelites, which have a long history of misogyny, homophobia, xenophobia, Islamophobia, and especially antisemitism.

The Black Hebrew Israelite movement is fairly broad, comprising organizations that (per the Anti-Defamation League) “operate semi-independently.” The movement generally coalesces around the notion that Black people are the real descendants of the ancient Israelites, with more extreme factions claiming that Black people have been “robbed of their identity as being ‘God’s chosen people'” (via the Southern Poverty Law Center).

It’s those extremist sects that have often parroted “classic” antisemitic tropes, like claiming European Jews (often referred to as the “synagogue of Satan”) wield outsized control over society, especially in industries like banking and the media. They’ve also pushed antisemitic claims that Jews are responsible for slavery and the “effeminizing of Black men.”

At one point in the purported documentary Irving shared, Dalton (who also narrates the film) brings up the “real truth about the slave trades.” He claims that, when teaching slavery, schools don’t mention the involvement of the Catholic Church, Arab, East African, or Islamic slave traders, or “the Jewish slave ships that brought our West African negro or Bantu ancestors to slave ports owned by [Jews].”

Immediately after, Dalton pivots to the mass media, calling it “the biggest tool of indoctrination, brainwashing, and propaganda that the world has seen” and adding that it’s been “helping Satan deceive the world” for centuries. To back up his claim, Dalton utilizes a fabricated quote that’s been a staple of antisemitic literature for decades. The quote — which details the supposed control Jews have over every facet of society — is attributed to Harold Rosenthal, an aide to former New York Senator Jacob Javits who was killed in a terrorist attack in Istanbul in 1976. The “quote” first appeared two years later, published in a pamphlet called The Hidden Tyranny by a man named Walter White, Jr., who appeared to make up an entire interview with Rosenthal to push this antisemitic theory.

In introducing the phony quote, Dalton pointedly describes Rosenthal as an “Ashkenazi Jew.”

Hebrews to Negroes, the book, contains even more instances of antisemitism. The book’s fourth chapter — “When Did Racism Towards Blacks Start?” — starts by falsely suggesting that anti-Black racism can be traced back to key Jewish texts. “Western Education and Religion tries to teach the world that blacks are cursed with their skin color by the Curse of Ham/Canaan. This is also taught in European Jewish documents and in the teachings of the Talmud book in Judaism. Some can say that it established the base for black racism even before the KKK.”

Riaz Haq said...

Everyone has a theory of contemporary anti-Semitism. Progressives tend to see the threats to American Jews emanating from the conspiracy-driven Right, with white supremacists and neo-Nazis taking their cues from dog-whistling Republicans. Conservatives observe that Jews frequently endure harassment, denigration, and violence from the anti-Zionist Left, which wields progressive academic theories to demonize them as complicit in white supremacy, if not perpetrators themselves.

These theories—admittedly simplified, but then again, the simplified arguments are the ones most frequently made—have some things in common. They are both elite-driven, seeing politicians and academics as the prime movers in a chain reaction leading to Jewish suffering. And they are, not coincidentally, convenient. Each side has a neat story to tell about who is responsible for the uptick in anti-Jewish violence in recent years: it’s our cultural opponents. And that seems suspiciously convenient.

That is not to say that neither side has a point. Clearly some anti-Jewish violence can be traced to malicious elites and their bad ideas or rhetoric. But most just doesn’t quite fit, as the experience of visibly Orthodox Jews here in New York suggests. Hasidim and other ultra-Orthodox Jews have borne the brunt of the assaults, harassment, and arson attacks, in neighborhoods with few Republicans (let alone white supremacists), at the hands of perpetrators who don’t seem steeped in postcolonial theory, to put it mildly.

Modern Orthodox Jews like me, who do not wear distinctive clothes except for perhaps the yarmulkes on our heads, have felt it, too. Growing up in the New York area, I can recall being harassed twice in 20-odd years. In the past two years living in Manhattan, though, I have been yelled at and menaced numerous times, and on one occasion assaulted (and then followed through a subway station). Something has changed, and blaming elite opponents just doesn’t get at the heart of the issue. I have observed the people trying to make my life miserable; they are neither MAGA types nor campus progressives.

They are, in all likelihood, tuned into mass popular culture, however. Which is why the scandal of hip-hop and fashion mega-star Kanye West, who recently made a series of bizarre and flagrantly anti-Semitic public comments, deserves some attention. For better or worse, West is better known than, say, Marjorie Taylor Greene or Edward Said. He made his comments on radio shows and podcasts that enjoy big followings but evade outgroup attention, much less analysis. Perhaps his brand of vulgar anti-Semitism can tell us something about what is motivating similarly vulgar—in the sense of being both ugly and common—violence.

First, it’s notable that West’s anti-Semitism comes in the midst of what appears to be a mental breakdown. This suggests that we should not read too far into the motivations or culpability of West as an individual. But it also reminds us that anti-Semitism thrives within delusion and conspiracy theories. Indeed, those who attack Jews on New York streets are far more likely to parrot such conspiracies than campus buzzwords or white-supremacist slogans. Controlling such violence is a function of effective treatment—or at least incapacitation—of mentally ill individuals, whose rantings can quickly turn to something worse.

Riaz Haq said...

Barbara Walters, Celebrated Jewish TV Persona, Dies at 93 - World News -

Walters made history for women and Jewish anchors on mainstream television and was known for 'inventing intimacy on television'