Friday, August 25, 2006


Fearless Jewish rebel Antony Loewenstein damn well better be fearless because unhappy cousin Ronald Green is a formidable opponent. From today's Australian Jewish News (not available online):
Ronald Green, a distant cousin who welcomed Loewenstein into his home near Tel-Aviv for a [Sabbath] dinner while he was researching his book, said his relative "took snippets" of their Friday night conversation "so that he could make us grist for his mill".

"None of his 'quotes' are accurate", Green claimed. "some are taken out of context and some are so far from what I said as to be downright lies."
Loewenstein responded by playing the man, not the ball:
"He's not particularly happy that he's been painted as a bigot. People who are bigots don't like being called bigots, but that's what he is," Loewenstein said.

He stood by the quotes he attributed to Green, saying: "I have notes written just after my conversations with him and I have every confidence in what I have written."

"If I write something down a few minutes after someone says it, I can remember quite accurately what they said", Loewenstein told the AJN.
Loewenstein's confidence in his memory is curious considering he couldn't accurately quote from Mark Steyn's presentation at the CIS Big Ideas Forum even when, presumably, he'd taken notes. Loewenstein's Ronald Green notes were, according to Loewenstein, taken down up to 20 minutes after the fact. That makes them memories, not notes.

At this point someone should ask Loewenstein how it is he traveled all the way to Israel to research his book, eventually including the views of various lefties, but the only Israel advocate he apparently spoke to at length was Ronald Green.

No matter, Loewenstein's problems with Green are just part of the burden borne by the fearless dissenter. Those broad shoulders will handle the load.

Update: Ronald Green has a question of his own for the publisher of Loewenstein's My Israel Question:
You are by now aware that not only did I not give Loewenstein permission to quote snatches from a family dinner, but that I had no idea he would do so. I am interested to know whether you were aware of these facts when you saw the manuscript.

Lest my question be misunderstood, I wish to make it clear that I am not questioning your opinion as to whether the quotes were accurate (and for the record, they were decidedly not), since I do realize that it is your job to support a book that you publish.

My question is - and I repeat - whether you knew that Loewenstein did not request nor receive permission from me.
The email, dated 22 August, remains unanswered.

If Loewenstein's dealings with Green were totally above board and transparent why were Green's comments reconstructed later rather than taken down as he spoke them? The answer would appear to be obvious.


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