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Shalit Was Coerced Into Potemkin ‘Interview’

But it’s okay because Hamas treated him well after kidnapping him

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Shalit during his forced television interview. The hand on his shoulder belongs to a masked Hamas man.(AP/Ynet)

“Hamas treated me well,” Gilad Shalit told the interviewer this morning, a line well suited to Hamas apologists. Max Blumenthal is game to use it, and chastises the U.S. media for focusing on Shalit himself for the human-interest element of the story—clearly a political decision, since as we know human-interest stories aren’t what sell papers—and not mentioning the broader context of the occupation, nor the stories of some of the Palestinian prisoners who were freed or some of those who weren’t so lucky. (And speaking of context, Blumenthal chooses not to include the context of why Hamas was in a position to be treating Shalit well in the first place: namely that it had kidnapped him in 2006. Maybe he expects his readers to know that already. I expect most readers to know about the occupation already.)

Here’s what Blumenthal doesn’t mention: that the “interview” this morning on an Egyptian television network was the final sadistic nail in the coffin of the five-plus years’ captivity of a teenage Israeli soldier. To be very clear, the interview was not agreed to by Israel—the original plan was for Shalit to be in Egypt for less than 15 minutes, merely an intermediate point between Gaza and Israel—and the Israeli government is shocked and appalled by the propagandistic spectacle (the English-language interviewer asked Shalit leading questions about Egypt’s indispensable role in brokering the deal and whether more Palestinian prisoners should be free). If you watch the video and see this poor kid barely able to keep his eyes open and wanting only to see the family he’s been kept away from for a fifth of his life, you will be shocked and appalled, too. See that picture? The hand on Shalit’s shoulder belongs to a Hamas thug standing behind him. At a moment when Shalit must still not have been sure that the deal for his freedom was going to go through, he was subjected to this. Frankly, it’s fucking enraging.

Anyway, it’s a shame that Blumenthal only elects to display his formidable skills as a press critic (really, this was great!) when it suits his prior agenda. And does Blumenthal really want the stories of the prisoners told? The one who killed a few dozen members of three generations of one family during a Passover Seder? The one who blew up a Sbarro’s pizza joint? If he thinks that standing those stories against Shalit’s story, even with the full, appropriate context of a brutal, unjust four-decade-long occupation explained, will somehow manage to make us care less about Shalit and more about an unequivocal terrorist group, then he can go for it.

I’ll prefer to focus on what Noam Shalit told actual members of the media earlier today outside his house in the north of Israel. “When I first saw Gilad,” he said, “I did not say much, I just hugged him.”

The U.S. Media Reports: Gilad Shalit Swapped for 1000 Non-People [Al Akhbar]
Gilad Shalit: I Thought I’d Stay in Captivity For Years [Ynet]

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The translator also intentionally mistranslated what Gilad was saying.

joseph says:

Are you surprised Mr. Tracy? Max Blumenthal published his Hamas propoganda in the pages of his new employer Al-Akhbar.. according to the NYtimes, al akhbar has ties to hizballah and their chairman, who is on record as saying all jews should be ethnically cleansed from the middle east, displays a large photo of mass murderer imad mughniyeh in his
office. Its all documented here:

Max has also ranted against Zionism on the official english language
propaganda arm of the Iranian government, Press TV. The video was uploaded to youtube by the user “pro ahmedinajad” check it out here:

The question is…is Bumenthals connections to such mass murdering thugs a sign of his true sympathies, or is he just that desperate for attention since he has largely been blackballed
from any respectable media outlet?

What is there to compare even in their stories? The Palestinian prisoners had excellent food, access to education and exercise facilities. They were in health club, Shalit was in a hellhole. What is exactly is there to compare?

What exactly is the surprise here? Of course these moral and mental midgets think that a 19 year old kidnapped by Hamas = the same as the Sbarro or Park Hotel bombers. In fact they probably think the 19 year old is ‘more guilty’. This type of insanity has been going on for quite a while now. This isn’t about 1967, this is about 1948.

Its time to wake up and smell the coffee folks. This isn’t 1965 and these aren’t your FDR/Hubert Humphrey-era leftists. This is the face of the hard left today and these are the people cavorting at OWS.

Bill Pearlman says:

Max Blumenthal is a scumbag who deserves to have Samir Kuntar or the guy who stabbed Helen Rapp to death come and visit his house and any children he might have.

It appears that the Al-Akhbar website, for which Blumenthal writes, has taken down the piece. Shame or technical difficulties?

Even neo-nazi David Duke is a fan of Blumenthal:

You know maxs strange obsession with relentlessly attacking zionism had gone too far when he has become the darling of the neo nazi right.

blumenthal has spent the last 2 years doing nothing but churning out tired
old anti israel propaganda. Is his sick obsession a result of a psychopathic form of self hatred? I’m afraid that only a certified mental health professional can assist mr. max blumenthal in answering that question.

Avi Kedavi says:

It’s a shame. Max Blumenthal is quite a talented journalist who seemingly has no fear. He walks into places like CPAC, Glenn Beck rallies, and a David Irving meeting in NYC and interviews the people there even though they want to do him some harm. I enjoyed his book that came out a few years ago as well. The problem is that Israel and “Palestine” have consumed him to such an extant that he cannot function without writing about the situation. As I said, it’s quite a shame to let talent be wasted in such a way.

Bill Pearlman says:

He is about has talented has Julius Streicher.

Max Blumenthal is one of a very rare breed of journalist who pursues hard news instead of mindless maudlin human interest angles. I always enjoy and feel I’m more informed from his reporting than the regular rote memorized reporting of other media entities and nothing’s new news organizations who just don’t go for the hard story but the usual easy way out.

Now certainly all of the hosts of hot heads can fume and fire up a firestorm of ugly epithets as I am as certain as the sun rises in the east some will surely endeavor to do so with a vengeful fervor of profoundest ferocity that will cause them to gleam with the very glibbest glow of pride.

Bill Pearlman says:

Sure, he’s a rare breed, of scumbag. Its just too bad that him, Joseph Dana, Richard Silverstein, and the ever popular Phil ( Hitler should have finished the job ) Weiss aren’t in a plane that goes down in a fiery crash

Dani ben Leb says:

M. Blumenthal along with Joseph Dana are US anti-Zionist spear heads. It is becoming good business. Dana is in the USA as we write visiting from IL. Half truths, suggestive and misleading head lines and at times lies pepper their work. They remind of the cold-war news papers which were clearly marked as Soviet. The sweet deal is that both often appear in Arab TV and Russian TV. All stations owned and paid for by petro $$ and Putin. I guess excepting Arab money then is alright. But not when BP gets it. The entire moral spine is missing. We see activists posing as journalists and Al Jazeera laps it up. Like Western soldiers who defected to East Germany. They too were very popular.
Blumenthal’s video work is some of the sickest shit I have seen in editing for political effect. Leni Riefenstahl would get a wet crotch watching his work, not the anti-semitism, but the editing for effect.
Blumenthal is a left wing hack, Nir Rosen and him are pen pals.

Nimrod says:

The Palestinian prisoners were over weight and well tanned. Strong. Shalit looked like he was going to fall at any moment. Some had killed 16 people. The good thing is that if any of these murderers fart in Gaza or the WB, it’s gonna be some lead in the head.

Dani ben Leb says:

Max Blumenthal and Nir Rosen sexting anti-Zionist porn. Covered in mondoscheiss they pose for Joseph Dana to take dirty pictures on his blackberry, which he can tweet to his anti-Zionist posse, world wide!
Here is a pertinent piece from Haaretz about what MB and his mates feed into:
At the same time, the novel focuses on the reality of Jewish life in 21st-century England, where anti-Semitism is more than just polite chauvinism, and violence against Jews is no rare anomaly. Treslove is horrified to discover that in “England his England” a 12-year-old girl was chased home by a gaggle of her peers yelling “Death to Jews.” However, the narrative stresses that more prevalent is the way in which English Jews have increasingly becoming unwitting targets of the local anti-Israel wrath. When a young London man is stabbed in the face and blinded by an Algerian, shouting “God is great” in Arabic, and “Death to all Jews,” the victim’s grandmother wonders how people, specifically a respected filmmaker, could justify such actions with surreal moral equations. “Is he saying … that Gaza vindicates in advance whatever crimes are committed in its name? Can no wickedness now be done to any Jew of any age living anywhere that doesn’t have Gaza as its reasoning?”

Brave move

The question is prescient and invokes the shadow of the Holocaust and the notion that Jews are somehow culpable for their own misfortune. Tackling these issues in a novel is a brave move for a contemporary author. In interviews, Jacobson has said that despite his sympathy for the Palestinians, he does not need to know anything about Israel to understand that there is something false about contemporary anti-Zionist rhetoric. No place could be that vile, he argues; no people could be so lost to humanity. Moreover, he rejects the claim that Zionism is unadulterated colonialism.

Dani ben Leb says:

Every now and then the old Arab masks slips. When you live in the ME you see it often. In Western media, moments such as this are rare.
But they were giddy. The were fucking horny to take this Jew down and fucking tape the motherfucker. This is real anti-semitic porn. Like the dead-baby-porn on Arab TV stations.
Having travelled through Egypt this March I can attest to a complete paranoia that has befallen the “educated” masses. Everywhere I went, it was immediately made sure that I was not an Israeli. It could of course have been comical watching every secret service guy in every hotel and road block ask wether I was Israeli. But it wasn’t funny. It was deeply engrained, brain washed-in cultural paranoia on stage. One man said, that the demonstrators were bad people, because the army now had to secure Cairo and other large cities. This meant that Israel was now free to invade with no army to stop them. I kid you not.
When the “Arab” brain frets less about humiliating Jews for some semi-erect dick-effect or plain old Mediterranean impotent machismo. Maybe there will be less sexual frustration in the world.

Dvorat says:

I think Blumenthal had been unmasked as a hardcore anti zionist activist who is not afraid to use lies to further his demonization of anything remotely zionist.

The question remains, are associates, of Blumenthal in the Jewish community such as Daniel Sieradski and Ben Murane of the New Israel Fund wise in continuing to defend such a Hamas sympathizer? One cant imagine that their donors and employers such as the NIF would want to get caught up with an individual who is “feeling the hate” towards israel and”feeling the love” towards mass murdering Hamas and PFLP terrorists.

Ben Murane would be wise to recant his description of Blumenthal as “a great Jewish prophet” and Daniel Sieradski would be wise to not keep hosting Blumenthal at the occupy wall street sukkah.

Associating with Max Blumenthal can indeed be detrimental to ones career in the Jewish community.

I think many of you blinkering zealots have successfully unmasked yourselves as a mentally imbalanced and really livid lynch mob. Max Blumenthal dares to report what other reporters are reticent to report. I applaud the man for that foremost. There are a good many posters here who sound in their tone like hangmen of some kind of incredibly ugly inquisition. Closed minds and a lot of rabid seekers of uber purity, some obviously on the trail of witches on a war path of ignorance, impotence, and ultimate echo chamber absurdity.

Does this sort of “reporting” surprise you? This is the moderate wing of the Arab press. Check out the MEMRI site for translations of Arab news broadcasts. Better yet what can be a better example than the welcome back party that Al Jazerra stages for a terrorist who smashed the head of a child open on the rocks. Wake up people (

Dani ben Leb says:

Here is a photo of Max Blumenthal, at work with OWS,
at the end of the day it is all about branding and marketing. Blumenthal needs to pay the rent, and photo streams are a good way of showing your pay masters that you are down with the ‘educated’ people of this world. Pro-Arab media has opened an entire new income stream for discredited Western far left wing hacks. Reading through various Arab media outlets, the commonalities of their Western journalists are often Marxist, ( Jewish ) anti-Zionist writers who will ‘prove’ to you, with their academic back grounds, how ‘degenerate’ Zionism is.

Cassandra says:

The hand is on the back of his chair, not his shoulder.

Credibility all ready gone just on the photo caption.

Goldberg_emmanual says:



This is what gets people motivated in life? Of all the problems of the world, as well as the story of Gilad himself, we waste so much time on this?

Passion wasted on the ethereal is passion lost for the tangible.

FreedomFighter says:

The thug is yourslf you fucking troll! where are you from the other prisonners you are so fucking blind

Yes indeed, here we find hope, the kind of hope that screams out livid loud and bold ugly and old “get a rope!.” The same old cyclical psychotic self renewing stupid stubborn old shtich…get a new act and get a new gig this old one as ancient as ever isn’t going over so bright and big.

Dani ben Leb says:

you are the definition of a troll. Something MB loves to expose on his blog. The far left has a penchant for proudly unmasking ‘Hasbara trolls’. What do you think you are?
On sites like 972, Joseph Dana takes pride in keeping his blog-discharge troll free.

Ha Ha Ha Ha. A troll…for whom the bell trolls. Wasn’t that something Hemingway wrote?

If I’m a troll you’re an asshole. :)

Max Blumenthal relied on a coerced statement to write in a column that Gilad Shalit had been treated well by his Hamas kidnappers. How can his supporters such as those commenting above defend that? How can they explain that Al-Akhbar has removed Blumenthal’s post from its website? Do they think it possible that Blumenthal’s standards about these matters are lower than those of Al-Akhbar?

Dani ben Leb says:

Wait! There is more Max Blumenthal. Here he is perpetuating the anti-semitic myth of the ever conspiring/war profiteering Jew.

MB, the gift that keeps on giving.

Yes, there’s even more blood vengeance by way of a bounty offered to all of those blood thirty enough in appetite to accept:

Who’s minding the asylum today?

Right on. Nice to see a little rage for a change instead of all the apologist nonsense I read.


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Shalit Was Coerced Into Potemkin ‘Interview’

But it’s okay because Hamas treated him well after kidnapping him

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