The Hamas-enabling Left loves to complain that Israel gets too much air time to attack Hamas. What about the Palestinian argument — after Hamas has slaughtered thousands of innocent Israelis? MSNBC rolled out the red carpet repeatedly for Dr. Fady Joudah, a Palestinian-American doctor and poet to accuse the American media of supporting Israel too much as his family in Gaza apparently died in Israeli air strikes. He was given 26 minutes over three interviews to insist the American media is terrible.
On Saturday, Joudah — who has made the incendiary claim that Israel practices “apartheid” — appeared with Alicia Menendez for seven minutes on Ali Velshi’s show. Velshi has been benched as a host, but the segment proceeded as if he was still there to rip Israel for their “total dehumanization of the Palestinian people.” He further complained that the U.S. has not pushed to end the blockade of Gaza which was imposed after Hamas took complete control in a 2007 coup:
We talk about the siege — I mean, the Hamas, the war, the whatever. Nobody fought for two decades to lift the siege off of Gaza, simple things. The children in Gaza — 40 percent of people in Gaza are children — are adolescent. What future have they had for the last 20 years? … Even if you permit me your title — Israel-Hamas war — as if somehow there’s this isolation between an entire people and a few bad apples, so to speak. It is not that. It has been a total dehumanization of the Palestinian people in Gaza…
Menendez then brought up a recent piece he wrote in which he fretted that Palestinians who flee Gaza may be “dispossessed” and will never return.
On Sunday’s Inside with Jen Psaki, Joudah appeared for 10 minutes. Joudah complained about Palestinians being “bullied” in America, and are getting suspended on Instagram and their “lack of visibility in the news,” how Americans aren’t seeing enough dead Palestinians, like you can get on Al-Jazeera? Then he said Israel’s engaged in “collective death,” an “attritional genocide.”
JOUDAH: But to get to the point in the 20th century, where one actually lives the meaning of those words, that the Palestinians, what they experienced as one, that my grief is not individual, it is a collective. We are dealing with this notion of a collective death, not a collective punishment. This is not collective punishment. This is collective death. I want to salute the Jewish people who went out to demonstrate against the Palestinian genocide, as they called it yesterday in New York. Because it is an attritional genocide.
Psaki wrapped up by pandering to Joudah that he was invited because MSNBC wants to have “real conversations.”
On Monday morning, MSNBC anchors Ana Cabrera and Jose Diaz-Balart co-hosted a segment with Joudah for nine minutes. After Cabrera set things up by recalling that her guest believes 49 members of his family were killed in Gaza after an IDF airstrike, Joudah lamented how difficult it is to get photographs of family members and suggested that they would not want such photos to be seen on American television because it is “the same system that….sanctions their killing.”
He was then allowed to ignore the fact that terrorism perpetrated out of the Palestinian territories for decades has been the reason for Israel putting more restrictions on them as he claimed that the real problem is that Palestinians are not viewed as equal human beings:
If we truly believe that people are equal, the Palestinian question would be solved a lot sooner. I — this is difficult for people to hear in English — in American English, but we do not view Palestinians as equal. I know that in our hearts when the situation is presented to us linguistically as a rational thing to hear, every one of us would say. “Well, of course I see you as my equal or my brother or my fellow human or my fellow citizen,” but, in reality, this is not afforded to the Palestinians.
After Cabrera just barely pushed back by talking up a two-state solution and recalling that the recent terrorist attack on Israel “complicates” the issue, Dr. Joudah dismissively responded:
It’s only complicated because we do not see the Palestinians equally. What about the catastrophes and the unheralded attacks on Palestinians also. They’re also historic. Israeli lives are equal to Palestinian lives — let’s start there. There’s no need to diminish the Israeli losses and their suffering, but let’s not always emphasize them in a way that they are somehow more important than Palestinian suffering. I go back to my point.
Cabrera then wrapped up by defending the media’s tendency to make a distinction between Hamas and the Gaza civilian population, as in suggesting that civilians are not responsible for Hamas’s actions.
It could be pointed out that Hamas won parliamentary elections in 2006, so there is actually reason to believe the terrorist group does have popularity in Gaza.
October 14, 2023
10:20 a.m. Eastern
ALICIA MENENDEZ: The conflict in Israel and Gaza has brought devastating consequences with mounting casualties and heart-wrenching stories emerging every day. Americans with ties to the region wait agonizingly to hear the fate of their loved ones, and unfortunately not all news brings comfort. My next guest, Dr. Fady Joudah, received tragic news this week from Gaza. He learned that 17 members of his family were killed in an Israeli airstrike. Dr. Joudah himself is a son of refugees, and he joins me now. He’s also an award-winning Palestinian American poet — a physician based in Austin, Texas; a former doctor with Doctors Without Borders in Zambia and South Sudan. Dr. Joudah, thank you so much for taking the time to be with us. We know this is a difficult time. We want to know how you are coping — how you are processing this?
Dr. FADY JOUDAH, PALESTINIAN AMERICAN PHYSICIAN: I’ve already said elsewhere that we are, you know, we wake up, we go to bed with what we wake up with, the same horrible concern and flashbacks of memories that go back decades. I’m 53 — my father is 90 in good health, so, you know, I have to ask you, “Why does a Palestinian such as myself appear on American TV only to represent the dead and the dying? When do Palestinians get to be a regular feature of the American consciousness and psyche so that we are people who can speak of life — of all aspects of life — not just a representation of death, dying and absolute horror?” I think we have to —
MENENDEZ: No, go ahead, Dr. Joudah, go ahead.
Dr. JOUDAH: Yeah, I think we have to ask ourselves deep questions about how we do not in any sense of the word away from flowery language — we do not see — we have not seen Palestinians as equal human beings in the U.S. for decades. I’m not sure we ever did starting from the point of equality of the humanity of the Palestinians anywhere. And they are not perfect people. No people are perfect, but everyone is equal. Just to accept that in the U.S., I think, is unthinkable. And to imagine that you accept the equality of the humanity of Palestinians will actually solve so many problems.
Common sense is uncommon — a shortcoming in all humans — but it is particular problem of the language of power. We talk about the siege — I mean, the Hamas, the war, the whatever. Nobody fought for two decades to lift the siege off of Gaza, simple things. The children in Gaza — 40 percent of people in Gaza are children — are adolescent. What future have they had for the last 20 years? What future for the next 20 years? What is the price of equating suffering? Where does it stop in the human mind? Even if you permit me your title — Israel-Hamas war — as if somehow there’s this isolation between an entire people and a few bad apples, so to speak. It is not that. It has been a total dehumanization of the Palestinian people in Gaza, in the West Bank, anywhere. Just start from speaking of the Palestinians as truly equal human beings to anyone anywhere, especially in English.
MENENDEZ: Dr. Joudah, I want to pick up on a piece that you referenced here, which is the displacement, especially because it is happening amidst a global displacement of young people, and, as we have watched that has consequences that extend generation to generation, so as you look forward on that question of what happens to these young people just in the days and weeks ahead, but beyond what questions are top of mind, what are you thinking about? What is it you want us to know?
Dr. JOUDAH: I would like people to know that it is very possible that a further dispossession of Palestinian land is afoot — that a further displacement and removal of Palestinian people is afoot — that the possibility of those people having lived through horror for the last 20 years who are — as you would or I might with my own children — not want to return to a place that has been utter destruction is very possible. The depletion of Palestinian souls and numbers on the ground is afoot. These are serious things. This is a repetition of the dreaded words of ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians — dreaded words in English — ethnic cleansing of Palestinians yet again.
I am a physician, and I want to ask, even in general: “When will the medical community in the U.S., as physicians, say, for example, ‘No life is better than another’?” You know, we have in medical schools and in institutions across the U.S. declarations about this war that are — that are not even both-sided — they’re one-sided. But, as a physician, I do not turn away from the poor, the uninsured, the, you know, people I like, people I don’t like, people who like me, people who don’t like me. We uphold a level of impartiality and neutrality in the name of humanitarianism and humanity. And here we are, a medical — the largest, most wonderful medical system in the world, and we can’t come up with a statement that says we are for all lives as equal.
So I think the problems are deep, and we have in the media as the major field of creating a culture industry in the U.S. to begin to really work hard and bravely and courageously at making sure that Palestinians are truly seen as beautiful and equal people to anyone because they are and because no one is more beautiful or less beautiful than another in this world.
MENENDEZ: Dr. Fady Joudah, thank you so much in the midst of your own grief for spending some time with us bringing us your perspective and your voice.
Inside with Jen Psaki
October 17, 2023
12:38 p.m Eastern
JOUDAH: Who of us, Jen, who of us knows what it is like to lose everything in a second? Now of course, many of us do, yes, all across the world. But really, to have an entire population lose their security, shelter, an idea of survival. There is an expression in Arabic called, to die in a group, to die in a collective is a mercy. This is kind of an anthropologic moment. People come up with proverbs, humans have come up with proverbs from these kind of experiences from a small collective.
But to get to the point in the 20th century, where one actually lives the meaning of those words, that the Palestinians, what they experienced as one, that my grief is not individual, it is a collective. We are dealing with this notion of a collective death, not a collective punishment. This is not collective punishment. This is collective death. I want to salute the Jewish people who went out to demonstrate against the Palestinian genocide, as they called it yesterday in New York. Because it is an attritional genocide. And I wish them, I wish they grow in number, I wish them to grow in love as they have.
October 16, 2023
10:21 a.m Eastern
Dr. FADY JOUDAH, PALESTINIAN ARAB AMERICAN: I am not permitted to go back to Gaza to even have photographs with them, and I have no access to ask them to send me photographs. And on the occasion that I might, I have to ask them ethically — at least for me — permission to use their photographs of the dead. And I know that I would also feel conflicted to ask because they would feel — I know that they would feel terrible about having their photos on U.S. TVs no matter the well intention — the good intention from the same system that has — sanctions their killing and has sanctioned it before. But we as humans beings understand that every human has a face. And the proof of relatability does not have to be a burden of proof on the dead.
JOSE DIAZ-BALART: Absolutely. Every human has a face. Every human has a soul. Every human has worth. In this so conflicted time, you whose profession and vocation is to help heal, as a doctor, how do you process and help us understand how difficult it is for this to finally be focused on people? And innocent people who a week ago were massacred in their homes — in a concert — and who now in your case 49 family members have been lost.
Dr. JOUDAH: Yeah, my case is irrelevant — less relevant to me because it is a collective case at this point. I hold on to what I say. If we truly believe that people are equal, the Palestinian question would be solved a lot sooner. I — this is difficult for people to hear in English — in American English, but we do not view Palestinians as equal. I know that in our hearts when the situation is presented to us linguistically as a rational thing to hear, every one of us would say. “Well, of course I see you as my equal or my brother or my fellow human or my fellow citizen,” but, in reality, this is not afforded to the Palestinians.
And if it is afforded to the Palestinians, we would all pause and say, “Well, you know, what does it — what would that entail? What would it entail for Palestinians to have equal rights to the majority of civilians in Israel who have always water, electricity and often a greater, greater by folds degree of security than most Palestinians have — freedom of movement and even freedom to books and reading and travel, etc., etc.” Those — the language that we have constructed I think over the last few decades that prevent us from seeing this simply is what we have to come to terms within America so that we can open our hearts truly to what we all believe in that we are all truly equal.
ANA CABRERA: Well, I think you heard in the interview last night from President Biden that he believes longer-term solution to this conflict in the Middle East specifically in Israel and Palestinian territories and trying to determine where this all heads — he sees as a two-state solution, and of course this is something that has been a complicated negotiation and unfortunately led to a lot of violence over decades and decades and decades. And this is a new flashpoint but also in a situation where it is a historical attack that happened against the Israeli people by Hamas, and that complicates it even more. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and perspective, and our heart is with you —
Dr. JOUDAH: It’s only complicated because we do not see the Palestinians equally. What about the catastrophes and the unheralded attacks on Palestinians also. They’re also historic. Israeli lives are equal to Palestinian lives — let’s start there. There’s no need to diminish the Israeli losses and their suffering, but let’s not always emphasize them in a way that they are somehow more important than Palestinian suffering. I go back to my point.
CABRERA: Thank you. Thank you for sharing that, and I do want to make the point, too, that we’ve been very careful — definitely on this show — to really distinguish the difference between Hamas, the terrorists, and the people who are in Gaza City who are innocent civilians who are suffering right now. And that I think is important. Thank you again for joining us.