“Blood Libel”: Is Sarah Palin An Anti-Semite?
After days of unusual silence, Sarah Palin released a video addressing the tragic events in Tucson. In a carefully crafted, well produced, and scripted statement, Palin uses the term ‘Blood Libel’ to explain concerns voiced through the media about how calls for violent action by the right, disguised as political rhetoric, may have contributed to the attempted assassination of Jewish Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.
While the motivation for the use of this term is unclear, the fact that it was included after days of deliberation, in a carefully scripted press release, is cause for investigation.
The term ‘Blood Libel‘ commonly refers to a false, and sensationalized, accusation that Jews sacrifice Christian children to use their blood for various ‘medicinal’ purposes, or to prepare the passover bread Matzoth (unleavened bread). It is also charged that Jews perform this ‘Blood Libel” out of vengeance against Christians.
In her video, Palin States:
“But, especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn. That is reprehensible.”
While it is difficult to ascertain precisely what Palin’s intentions were, in carefully choosing these words for her script, it can be certain that the meaning must have import to her. As a self described fundamentalist Christian, her beliefs regarding the imminent return of Jesus, and the killing of all non-repentant Jews upon his return, is well known. However, what is much less clear is whether or not she is trying to make a statement about supposed Jewish run media, or a supposed left-wing/ Jewish alliances, as it was these that she seemed to be targeting with this comment.
Regardless, Palin’s ramblings are often confused, and disjointed, and she has often misused terms, and even invented new ones, to suit her purposes. This may well be the case in this situation, however, the burden for clarification lies squarely with her and her ‘camp.’ An excited utterance is one thing, a carefully scripted use of such an inflammatory term is quite another.