Steve Hofman: Letter had anti-Semetic intent |

Steve Hofman: Letter had anti-Semetic intent

Well, well, Mr. Paul Bonnifield, your March 12 letter about a Times of Israel article should not fool anyone about your anti-Semitic intent. You framed your commentary’s focus on a Times of Israel article by saying “I’m sure we have all heard something about Rep. Amar’s statements concerning Israel…”

How rich is that? We have heard about Rep. Amar’s statements but not because she is a critic of Israel or even America’s 50-year plus strategic alliance with Israel. She is not alone on that score.

There is nothing illegitimate about debating and criticizing U.S. policy toward Israel. But, what separates her from most back bench freshman members of Congress seeking a place on the national stage is her explicitly stated view that America’s policies toward Israel are driven by a combination of Jewish money in the political system and a dual loyalty by American Jews toward Israel and the U.S., with America’s interests taking a back seat to those of Israel.

This kind of thinking has sadly been whispered by a small minority of Americans since the emergence of Zionism at the start of the 20th century. Now, a hundred plus years later and a world population of Jews diminished by the murder of millions, the whispers have risen in their volume as Americans like Rep. Amar and her supporters go beyond policy differences to ethnic hate. Mr. Bonnifield’s too-cute-by-half reference to “Representative Amar’s statements” puts him right alongside such whisperers of hate.

I know a little bit about ethnic hate. My father was the sole member of his immediate family to survive German hate. And, one morning a couple of years before moving to Steamboat, I awoke to Swastikas and anti-Jewish graffiti painted on my garage door at my then home in Maryland. A fresh coat of paint covered the words and symbols, but no amount of paint could hide the reality of hate guiding the hand that held the brush.

Mr. Bonnifield’s hand was more subtle, white-washing Amar’s words by ignoring what she actually said and then, like her other apologists, painting a false picture of the reality on the ground by citing the published thoughts of a news organization, Times of Israel, which he self-servingly calls “Israel’s leading newspaper.” It is anything but.

Go to Wikipedia. It lists Israel’s 18 leading newspapers, including the Jerusalem Post, Haaretz and Maariv. Not surprisingly, Times of Israel is nowhere to be found. His sole purpose in elevating Times of Israel was to legitimize his views and mislead Steamboat Pilot & Today readers.

Nice try, Mr. Bonnifield. But, here is one Jew who knows history’s lessons as to what can occur if the haters are loud and their targets are silent.

Steven Hofman

Steamboat Springs

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