I’m still waiting for the international outrage.
I’m still waiting for my colleagues in the news media to jump on the story.
I’m still waiting for Americans to recognize the way the story illustrates the root cause of conflict in the Middle East.
As I prepare this column for publication, not one other news agency in the world has reported on it.
Why is this story so significant?
Because it so perfectly illustrates why we continue to have conflict in the Middle East between Arabs and Israelis.
This is not a conflict between two sides with legitimate grievances and competing interests. It is a conflict, at its core, between a nation that asks only to live in peace with its neighbors and a racist, hate-filled group of nations and peoples who seek only the destruction, the annihilation, the extermination of all Jews from the Middle East.
It may seem a trivial matter that one Jewish reporter was denied entry to an Arab police state. But it’s part of a much bigger picture.
Why were Jews evacuated from the Gaza Strip last summer? Because the Palestinian Authority, which seeks to create a state of its own, insists that no Jews may live within the borders of the future land of Palestine.
Why did Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad last week say that Israel itself should be relocated to Europe? Because his non-negotiable demand is that no Jews should be permitted to live in the Middle East – at least not in a state of security and freedom.
Why did U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan last week preside over a conference in New York in support of a Palestinian state in front of a map of the Middle East that showed Israel wiped off the face of the earth and replaced by a state of Palestine? Because that has always been – and always will be – the goal of the extremist, anti-Semitic haters who hide behind the face of “Palestinian self-determination.”
Yes, it may seem like a small development that an American Jewish journalist was denied entry to Syria, while his non-Jewish colleagues and traveling partners were permitted. It is not. It is a huge news story. It puts to the lie the notion that Syria is anything but a terrorist rogue state hell-bent on destroying the only Jewish state in the world.
As ABC Radio talk-host John Batchelor, one of Klein’s traveling partners put it: “It’s like 1938 all over again.”
Batchelor did the right thing in response. He refused to enter Syria without his Jewish colleague. He said it was important to show the people of the Middle East we don’t countenance bigotry and racism and hatred.
How would I expect my colleagues to respond to such a story?
Is it too much to ask that the story be reported?
I wonder how it might have been covered if a Jewish reporter from the New York Times had been turned away?
Somehow, when I first heard this news Thursday morning, I actually pictured in my mind news organizations around the world dispatching their Jewish correspondents to Syria as a form of protest. I actually thought they might rally around one of their own colleagues victimized because of his religion and ethnic background. I actually considered that my colleagues in the news media might overlook for just a little while their own petty jealousies with regard to Internet news agencies like WND to do what was morally right.
I don’t know what I was thinking about.
Today, I’m not sure who inspires more revulsion in my soul – the fascists in Syria, or my media colleagues who pretend this incident never happened.