The Independent published a story on December 24th, by their Deputy People Editor Ella Alexander, about the ongoing Sony hacking scandal.
Here’s the headline, photo and strapline.
So far so good.
As Alexander reports, “Natalie Portman, Scarlett Johansson and Ryan Seacrest were among a select few to receive emails from Relativity Media CEO and The Social Network executive producer Ryan Kavanaugh about anti-Semitism in relation to the Gaza conflict”.
However, in attempting to explain the nature of those emails (a reply-all chain argument leaked by Sony hackers about Gaza, featuring Russell Simmons, Portman, Scarlett Johansson, and Ryan Seacrest) from Kavanaugh, who is Jewish and a passionate Israel supporter, the Indy reporter gets a serious element of the story wrong.
Alexander writes the following:
Kavanaugh likened the situation in Gaza to the Holocaust.
No, he most certainly did not.
As the rest of the quote from Kavanaugh’s email cited by Alexander makes clear, he was likening the situation for Jews worldwide to the Holocaust, and arguing that the rise of antisemitism has dangerous parallels to the 1930s.
The problem is that Moore ‘ law is kicking in. Before the summer 50 percent of college students supported israel, today less the 25 percent do. There are hate crimes against heed happening in almost every major metropolitan city, now including the US.
We have let this happen. And it’s our job to keep another Hollacast [sic] from happening. Many of you may think that can’t happen, that is extreme. My Grandmother told me over and over again remember no one believed it could happen and everyone thought the government would not allow it to. It took 5 years before the [sic] us stepped in, and 12 million dead.
If you pull newspapers from pre Hollacast [sic] it seems eerily close to our world today.
Kavanaugh doesn’t mention “Gaza” in his email, which is clearly addressing the dangerous rise in antisemitic incidents (largely in Europe) over the summer.
Though, of course, there were a more than a few shrill, intellectually unserious voices making implicit (and sometimes explicit) comparisons between Israel’s war against Hamas and the Holocaust, Ryan Kavanaugh certainly was not one them – as the Indy journalist surely could have surmised by carefully reading the relevant quote in her own article.