In defense of Sarah Palin

In defense of Sarah Palin

The disdain that is directed towards the “irrelevant” former governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, in the pages of The Jewish Standard – from the Op-Ed pages, to the news pages, to even the Noshes page – on a regular basis, is nothing short of appalling.

On the one hand, she is deemed to be a joke, a quitter, a nightmare – and that’s just scratching the surface of the disparagement directed her way; on the other hand, you seem to hang on her every utterance as if the future of the world hangs in the balance.

Recently, Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, while praising Palin’s clear statement in support of Israel, at the very same time defamed her by referencing the nature of her remarks as “simplistic.” The very idea of the ADL defaming somebody it agrees with would seem to be extraordinarily hypocritical and downright ludicrous. Besides, I didn’t realize the State of Israel had so many friends around the world that we could so cavalierly dismiss one whose heart seems to be in the right place.

The Dec. 4 column by Michael Felsen, however, really took the cake. He suggested that Palin’s support of Israel and expectation to see further Jewish population growth through immigration stemmed from her desire to usher in Armageddon. Has the governor stated as such? To impugn her motives in this fashion is nothing short of an outrage. Talk about defamation!

In fact, the very pages of The Jewish Standard have noted positively that the wildly successful Nefesh B’Nefesh program has indeed produced a tremendous upsurge in aliyah from North America and around the world over the past decade. In other words, “more and more Jewish people” have been flocking to Israel during recent years. (And isn’t that a good thing?)

Actually, I find Ms. Palin’s so-called “simplistic” support of Israel rather refreshing – especially when compared with President Obama’s troubling remarks in Cairo earlier this year where he shamefully seemed to posit a moral equivalence between Jewish persecution and suffering in the Holocaust, and, “on the other hand,” as he put it, Palestinian suffering “in pursuit of a homeland.”

If that’s the choice being presented before the Jewish community, give me “simplicity” any day of the week.