Criticizing Israel

I’m glad to see EW is unafraid to publish criticism of the Israeli government since the new owners of The Register-Guard have decided to suppress information and opinions from Palestinian rights supporters. Like Jack Dresser and Reza Behnam, my letters and editorials were published routinely for years before the change in the R-G’s editorial policy.

I had the same experience that Behnam wrote about (Letters, Oct. 31), being told that my latest letter “would be a great addition to the mix” if I could supply references. Rather than refer them to books, I used mainstream news sources to document the facts of Israeli racism and oppression but received no response to two emails with the documentation.

I then spoke to the opinion editor twice and was told that I had to speak to the letters clerk. On the last occasion, he stated that the letters clerk was unavailable but he would tell her to call me that afternoon. Of course, I received no call.

Now that it’s clear that my experience reflects the R-G’s abandonment of basic journalistic responsibility to make sure both sides are heard, I hope that EW will continue to allow those calling for justice in Palestine to be heard. Had the R-G’s type of censorship been the rule when we were fighting apartheid in South Africa, it would still be flourishing today.

Rick Staggenborg, Veterans For Peace,  Linus Pauling chapter


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