Ed Koch, former Mayor of New York City, has come to the defense of Sarah Palin regarding her use of the term “blood libel” to describe the malicious and false accusations that Palin’s electoral target map contributed to the Tucson shootings (emphasis mine):
Today the phrase “blood libel” can be used to describe any monstrous defamation against any person, Jew or non-Jew. It was used by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon when he was falsely accused of permitting the Lebanese Christian militia to kill hundreds of defenseless and innocent Muslim men, women and children in Lebanese refugee camps. The killings were monstrous and indefensible revenge for earlier killings by Muslims of innocent Christian civilians.
Time Magazine published a story implying that Sharon was directly responsible for the massacres. He sued the magazine. At trial it was determined that the magazine story included false allegations, but since Sharon was a public figure, he received no monetary damages.
How dare Sarah Palin, cried the commentators, use that phrase to describe the criticism of her by those who blamed her for creating the atmosphere that set Loughner off in his murderous madness. Some took the position that it proved their ongoing charges that she is not an intelligent person and probably did not know what the phrase meant historically. In my opinion, she was right to denounce her critics and use blood libel to describe the unfair criticism that she had been subject to.
It is so interesting that the punditry seems more interested in nit-picking Palin’s verbiage, even though that verbiage demonstrably was consistent with modern usage of the term “blood libel, rather than denouncing the people who spread the lie that Palin was responsible for the Tucson shooting — a lie believed by 56% of Democrats and 35% of the nation overall.
It’s 2012 folks, and the media will do whatever it can to destroy Republican candidates. This is just the beginning.