The Sicarii: The Jewish Daggermen With a Thirst for Roman Blood

The Sicarii: The Jewish Daggermen With a Thirst for Roman Blood


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The Sicarii - which may be translated as ‘daggermen’ from the Latin - were a group of Jewish zealots who lived during the 1 st century AD. The Sicarii are often considered to be one of the earliest groups of terrorists in human history.

Rebel Beginnings

The Roman province of Judaea was formed in 6 AD, following the end of the Herodian Tetrarchy. The Romans had already established their presence in the area prior to the formation of this province, as the Herodians had been client-kings of the Romans. For certain Jews, the Roman occupation of their land was deemed illegitimate, and they were hoping to rid themselves of Roman rule. Several groups rose to challenge the Romans, one of which was the Sicarii.

The Zealots were another rebel group, including the Apostle St Simon the Zealot , represented here by Peter Paul Rubens (c. 1611), from his Twelve Apostles series

The Sicarii are mentioned in Josephus’ The Jewish War . In Book VII, Chapter 8 of this piece of writing, Josephus mentions the Sicarii treated the Jews who had submitted to the Romans as enemies, and plundered their property. Josephus goes on to say that although the Sicarii claimed that those Jews had given up their freedom out of cowardice, this was in fact a “cloak for the barbarity which was made use of by them, and to colour over their own avarice”.

Josephus also mentions the Sicarii in his Antiquities of the Jews . In Book XX, Chapter 8, Josephus mentions that the Sicarii were thus called because of their weapon of choice, “small swords, not much different in length from the Persian acinacæ, but somewhat crooked, and like the Roman sicae, [or sickles], as they were called”. Moreover, it is from here that we learn about the movement’s modus operandi : “they mingled themselves among the multitude at their festivals, when they were come up in crowds from all parts to the city to worship God, as we said before, and easily slew those that they had a mind to slay.” In ‘ The Jewish War’ , Josephus reports that the first victim of the Sicarii was the high priest Jonathan.

Sicarii Dagger used as the weapon of choice by the Sicarii Assassins. ( CC BY 2.0 )

The First Jewish-Roman War

During the First Jewish-Roman War, which lasted from AD 66 – 73, the Sicarii were led by a Manahem, the son of Judas. Under Manahem’s leadership, the Sicarii participated in the rebellion against Rome. Having captured the old Herodian fortress of Masada, and plundering its armoury, the Sicarii continued their march to Jerusalem, where they formed an alliance with the other Jewish rebel groups. Although the rebels succeeded in expelling the Romans from the city, there was soon conflict between the different groups.

The destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem by Hayez. In the year 70 AD, the Second Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed by the Roman army during the First Jewish-Roman War

Manahem intended to make himself the leader of the entire rebellion by having himself crowned as the messiah-king in the Temple. The other rebels were outraged by this, and the Sicarii were attacked by the rest of the rebels. Manahem was eventually defeated, captured, tortured, and then executed, along with many other followers. The surviving Sicarii, led by Eleazar ben Ya’ir, a relative of Manahem, fled to Masada, which served as their stronghold for the rest of the war. The Sicarii did not participate any further in the rebellion against the Romans, and limited their military actions to the plundering of Jewish villages near their fortress.

Seige of Masada Aerial view of Masada in the Judaean Desert, Modern Israel ( CC BY SA 4.0 )

Death Before Dishonor

Masada was one of the last strongholds held by the Jewish rebels during their revolt against the Romans. In AD 73, the Romans under Lucius Flavius Silva began to besiege this fortress. When Eleazar, the Sicarii leader, realised that all was lost, he gathered the remaining defenders together, and told them what the Romans would do to them and their families if they were captured alive. By this means, he convinced them to kill their families, and then commit suicide. When the Romans captured the fortress, they found that all the Jews in the fortress, with the exception of two women and five children, had chosen to die by their own swords, rather than surrender to the Romans.

Top image: Siege and Destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans (1850 painting by David Roberts) (Public Domain)


Gặp Simon the Zealot: Một sứ đồ bí ẩn

Simon the Zealot, một trong 12 tông đồ của Chúa Giêsu Kitô, là một nhân vật bí ẩn trong Kinh thánh. Chúng ta có một chút thông tin trêu ngươi về anh ta, điều này đã dẫn đến cuộc tranh luận đang diễn ra giữa các học giả Kinh Thánh.

Trong một số phiên bản của Kinh thánh (như Kinh thánh Amplified), ông được gọi là Simon the Cananaean. Trong Phiên bản King James và Phiên bản King James mới, anh ta được gọi là Simon the Canaanite hoặc Cananite. Trong phiên bản tiếng Anh, Kinh thánh tiêu chuẩn Mỹ mới, Phiên bản quốc tế mới và Bản dịch sống mới, ông được gọi là Simon the Zealot.

Để gây nhầm lẫn hơn nữa, các học giả Kinh Thánh tranh luận về việc Simon có phải là thành viên của đảng Zealot cực đoan hay liệu thuật ngữ này chỉ đơn giản đề cập đến lòng nhiệt thành tôn giáo của ông. Những người theo quan điểm trước đây cho rằng Jesus có thể đã chọn Simon, một thành viên của những người Zealots ghét thuế, ghét La Mã, để đối trọng với Matthew, một người thu thuế trước đây và là nhân viên của đế chế La Mã. Những học giả nói rằng một động thái như vậy của Jesus sẽ cho thấy vương quốc của ông vươn tới mọi người trong mọi tầng lớp.

Một khía cạnh kỳ quặc khác trong cuộc hẹn của Simon là người Zealots thường đồng ý với người Pha-ri-si, theo như sự tuân thủ pháp luật của các điều răn. Chúa Giêsu thường xuyên đụng độ với những người Pha-ri-si về việc giải thích luật pháp nghiêm ngặt của họ. Chúng ta có thể tự hỏi làm thế nào Simon Zealot phản ứng với điều đó.

Đảng Zealot có một lịch sử lâu dài ở Israel, được hình thành bởi những người đàn ông đam mê tuân theo các điều răn ở Torah, đặc biệt là những người cấm thần tượng. Khi những người chinh phục nước ngoài áp đặt cách ngoại đạo của họ đối với người Do Thái, Zealots đôi khi chuyển sang bạo lực.

Một trong những nhánh nhỏ của Zealots là Sicarii, hay daggermen, một nhóm sát thủ đã cố gắng gạt bỏ sự cai trị của La Mã. Chiến thuật của họ là hòa nhập vào đám đông trong các lễ hội, trượt ra phía sau một nạn nhân, sau đó giết anh ta bằng Sicari của họ, hoặc con dao cong ngắn. Hiệu ứng này là một triều đại khủng bố đã phá vỡ chính quyền La Mã.

Trong Lu-ca 22:38, các môn đệ nói với Chúa Giê-su: "Hãy xem, Chúa ơi, đây là hai thanh kiếm". Khi Jesus bị bắt trong Vườn Gethsemane, Peter rút thanh kiếm ra và cắt đứt tai của Malchus, người hầu của linh mục cao cấp. Không phải là căng thẳng khi cho rằng thanh kiếm thứ hai thuộc sở hữu của Simon the Zealot, nhưng trớ trêu thay anh ta đã giấu nó và Peter chuyển sang bạo lực.

Thành tựu của Simon the Zealot

Kinh thánh cho chúng ta gần như không có gì về Simon. Trong Tin mừng, ông được nhắc đến ở ba nơi, nhưng chỉ liệt kê tên của ông với 12 môn đệ. Trong Công vụ 1:13, chúng ta biết rằng ông đã hiện diện với 11 sứ đồ ở phòng trên của Jerusalem sau khi Chúa Kitô lên trời.

Truyền thống của nhà thờ cho rằng ông đã truyền bá phúc âm ở Ai Cập với tư cách là một nhà truyền giáo và đã được tử đạo ở Ba Tư.

Điểm mạnh

Simon đã bỏ lại tất cả mọi thứ trong kiếp trước để theo Chúa Jesus. Ông sống đúng với Ủy ban vĩ đại sau khi Chúa lên trời.

Những điểm yếu

Giống như hầu hết các tông đồ khác, Simon the Zealot đã bỏ rơi Jesus trong thời gian thử thách và đóng đinh.

Bài học cuộc sống từ Simon the Zealot

Chúa Giêsu Kitô vượt qua các nguyên nhân chính trị, chính phủ và mọi biến động trần thế. Vương quốc của ông là vĩnh cửu. Theo Chúa Giêsu dẫn đến sự cứu rỗi và thiên đàng.


After years of political agitation and terrorism by radicals such as the Sicarii and Zealots, the Jewish Revolt erupted in 66 AD when the Roman governor responded to tax protests by arresting prominent Jews and looting Jerusalem&rsquos Temple. Things then quickly escalated into a full blown revolt that forced the Romans and their pet king to flee Judea.

Early on, the Sicarii seized the fortress of Masada near the Dead Sea, then fell upon nearby Roman enclaves and massacred over 700 Roman women and children. That solidified their own ranks by ensuring that there would be no turning back, and confronted other Jews with the prospect of massive collective punishment of the innocent and guilty alike if the Romans won.

The Sicarii then joined the Zealots and other rebels in attacking Jerusalem, which they liberated in 66 AD. Like today&rsquos ISIS, the Sicarii then engaged in widespread violence to compel conformity to their brand of Judaism. They began killing known and suspected collaborators en masse, as well as any opponents, suspected opponents, and those who failed to express the requisite enthusiasm for the Sicarii line.

Their extremism led to a backlash and uprising by Jerusalem&rsquos population, and a falling out with the other rebels. It culminated in Sicarii defeat, the capture, torture, and execution of their leader, and the group&rsquos expulsion from the city. The survivors retreated to the fortress of Masada, and contented themselves with plundering the surrounding countryside.

In the meantime, the Zealots and other radicals crushed the popular backlash and retained control of Jerusalem until it was besieged, conquered, and razed by the Romans in 70 AD. After mopping up operations, the Romans eventually reached the final holdouts, the Sicarii in Masada, whom they besieged. Realizing that all was lost and that their fate would be unenviable if the Romans got a hold of them, the Sicarii opted for mass suicide, killing their families and then themselves.


ISHMAEL ( />).

Eldest son of Abraham by his concubine Hagar born when Abraham was eighty-six years of age (Gen. xvi. 15, 16). God promised Abraham that His blessing should be upon Ishmael, who, He foretold, would beget twelve princes and would become a great nation (Gen. xvii. 18, 20). Ishmael was circumcised at the age of thirteen (Gen. xvii. 23-26). When Sarah saw Ishmael mocking her son Isaac, his brother, younger by fourteen years, she insisted that Abraham cast out Ishmael and his slave-mother. Abraham reluctantly yielded, having provided them with bread and a bottle of water. Ishmael was about to die of thirst when an angel showed his mother a well, repeating to her at the same time that Ishmael would become a great nation. Ishmael dwelt in the wilderness, apparently, of Beer-sheba, where he became a skilful archer later he settled in the wilderness of Paran, where his mother took him a wife from Egypt (Gen. xxi. 8-21). Both Ishmael and Isaac were present at the burial of their father, Abraham. Ishmael died at the age of 137. He had twelve sons, ancestors of twelve tribes that dwelt "from Havilah unto Shur, that is before Egypt, as thou goest to Assyria" (Gen. xxv. 9-18).

The name of Ishmael is an allusion to God's promise to hear ( />) the complaints of Israel whenever it suffered at the hands of Ishmael (Gen. R. xlv. 11). Abraham endeavored to bring up Ishmael in righteousness to train him in the laws of hospitality Abraham gave him the calf to prepare (Gen. R. xlviii. 14 comp. Gen. xviii. 7). But according to divine prediction Ishmael remained a savage. The ambiguous expression />in Gen. xxi. 9 (see Hagar) is interpreted by some rabbis as meaning that Ishmael had been idolatrous by others, that he had turned his bow against Isaac. According to the interpretation of Simeon b. Yoḥai, Ishmael mocked those who maintained that Isaac would be Abraham's chief heir, and said that as he (Ishmael) was the first-born son he would receive two-thirds of the inheritance (Tosef., Sotah, v. 12, vi. 6 Pirḳe R. El. xxx. Gen. R. liii. 15). Upon seeing the danger to Isaac, Sarah, who had till then been attached to Ishmael (Josephus, "Ant." i. 12, § 3), insisted that Abraham cast out Ishmael. Abraham was obliged to put him on Hagar's shoulders, because he fell sick under the spell of the evil eye cast upon him by Sarah (Gen. R. liii. 17).


Today in History: Rome Defeats the Jews in the Year 70

Roman bas-relief of the victory march of Titus, displaying items captured from the Jewish rebels he defeated

“On this day in 70 C.E., rebel forces in the city were vanquished. The conquest of Jerusalem was the climax of the Great Revolt, which began four years earlier with a number of attacks by Jewish rebels in the Land of Israel against Roman authorities.”

EDITORS’ NOTE: What you are reading here is the nucleus around which so many geo-political events of today revolve: Rome’s destruction of Judea and the Jewish attempt to re-write history and make the aggressors pay for their crime of harming the “apple of Yahweh’s eye,” the Jews.

Much as they are today, the Jews then were behaving badly: Stealing from and waging war on everyone around them, so much so that the Roman Empire had to deal with them sternly — which they did. This is the mentality of the Jews — never any self-examination of their historical bad behavior which led to Rome’s actions. All they can see is just evil Whites (the Romans, in this case) always attacking virtuous Jews for no reason except “hatred of Jews.” To the Jews, we, the people of Europe and North America — in short, White civilization — are the descendants of the Roman Empire, and we have to pay for what Titus did to them almost 2,000 years ago.

This is one reason most Jews hate Trump so much — a blond man who resembles in some ways a Roman emperor, a leader who does not want to support the Jews’ desired wars with Russia and Syria, and who denounces many of their agents and main points of their agenda.


Multiple Proud Boys Stabbed in Washington, D.C. Knife Attack

Police said they are looking for three suspects: two Black males wearing all-black clothing and a Black female wearing black sweatpants with white stripes, orange leggings and a dark gray coat armed with a knife.


I'm sure it wasn't BLM or Antifa, more likely racist right wing agitators.

Apdst

Apdst

Multiple Proud Boys stabbed in Washington, D.C. knife attack

www.google.com

Police said they are looking for three suspects: two Black males wearing all-black clothing and a Black female wearing black sweatpants with white stripes, orange leggings and a dark gray coat armed with a knife.


I'm sure it wasn't BLM or Antifa, more likely racist right wing agitators.

Deuce

Outer space potato man

Checkerboard Strangler

Recovering Analog Dinosaur

Multiple Proud Boys stabbed in Washington, D.C. knife attack

www.google.com

Police said they are looking for three suspects: two Black males wearing all-black clothing and a Black female wearing black sweatpants with white stripes, orange leggings and a dark gray coat armed with a knife.


I'm sure it wasn't BLM or Antifa, more likely racist right wing agitators.

ASHES

A Person

Guyzilla

Multiple Proud Boys stabbed in Washington, D.C. knife attack

www.google.com

Police said they are looking for three suspects: two Black males wearing all-black clothing and a Black female wearing black sweatpants with white stripes, orange leggings and a dark gray coat armed with a knife.


I'm sure it wasn't BLM or Antifa, more likely racist right wing agitators.

Play stupid games, get stupid prizes. Start gunning for minorities, and those minorities might open extra holes. For every threat the right wing makes against normal people, more normal people will protect themselves PRIOR to being destroyed. You right wingers declared civil war. Reap the whirlwind.
--------------------------------------
Jews were beaten, occupied and crucified. Did they peacefully protest? Not exactly. What they did, is stab the **** outta any Jew sympathizer, or Roman overseer.

And while Jesus didnt go for that, at all, the bible did not speak so much against the practice. It was VERY widespread.

We are being invaded by right wingers, and occupied. They are the minority, and are using violence, to overule the majority.

Expect daggermen, if you persist in trying to destroy minorities. Aint saying it is right to stab proudthugs, but fully expected. Right wingers should consider not going to cities. They have made this a hot war.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The Sicarii: The Jewish Daggermen With a Thirst for Roman Blood

Justabubba

Long standing member

Joko104

Multiple Proud Boys stabbed in Washington, D.C. knife attack

www.google.com

Police said they are looking for three suspects: two Black males wearing all-black clothing and a Black female wearing black sweatpants with white stripes, orange leggings and a dark gray coat armed with a knife.


I'm sure it wasn't BLM or Antifa, more likely racist right wing agitators.

Police said they are looking for three suspects: two Black males wearing all-black clothing and a Black female wearing black sweatpants with white stripes, orange leggings and a dark gray coat armed with a knife.

Why are Canadians allowed to try to influence and interfere in our elections with massive non-stop disinformation like you and another Canadian post on this forum, while it is a crime for Russians to do so?

Guyzilla

Police said they are looking for three suspects: two Black males wearing all-black clothing and a Black female wearing black sweatpants with white stripes, orange leggings and a dark gray coat armed with a knife.

Why are Canadians allowed to try to influence and interfere in our elections with massive non-stop disinformation like you and another Canadian post on this forum, while it is a crime for Russians to do so?

Rogue Valley

FACTA NON VERBA

Why would I care about Proud Boys?

Joko104

ASHES

A Person

Police said they are looking for three suspects: two Black males wearing all-black clothing and a Black female wearing black sweatpants with white stripes, orange leggings and a dark gray coat armed with a knife.

Why are Canadians allowed to try to influence and interfere in our elections with massive non-stop disinformation like you and another Canadian post on this forum, while it is a crime for Russians to do so?

Bomberfox

Fred C Dobbs II

Well-known member

Fred C Dobbs II

Well-known member

Bomberfox

HenryChinaski

Fred C Dobbs II

Well-known member

Metric Mouse

Your hi-top sneakers and your sailor tattoos.

BlueTex

Looks like your gonna have to find a new group to blame.


Early Wednesday morning, WUSA and WJLA reported that the DC police said three members of the white nationalist group Proud Boys were stabbed by three people “associated” with Black Lives Matter on New York Avenue early Wednesday morning.

However, an hour later, the two news outlets updated their stories to say that the police had retracted the earlier statements, saying that there was no evidence that the suspects were affiliated with Black Lives Matter and that the victims were not members of Proud Boys.

A police source close to the investigation says that the difficulty began because the officer responding at the scene filed an unclear and poorly written incident report. Detectives were later dispatched to reinterview witnesses and the victims for a new report. Police officials would not confirm whether or not this was true.

At the time of the initial press briefing, the source says that Lt. Ralph Neal, the officer giving the statement, was working off of the faulty incident report and reports from unnamed sources in the Police Department, who said that the victims were members of the Proud Boys. That was later found to be untrue, as officers re-interviewed the victims. It is unclear why police believed the victims were Proud Boys.


Crimes Against CHILDREN

6,000+ Catholic priests abused 16,000+ (known) children since 1950 in America (link)

500,000 children taken from families, forced into Catholic institutions and abused in Australia from 1930 to 1970 (link)

4,000+ children sexually abused in Australia since 1980 (link)

Hundreds of thousands of children abused in Catholic and Protestant 'care homes' in Germany between 1950 to 1970 (link)

Pope John Paul II ignored the abuse of 2,000 boys in Austria over decades and covered up 'innumerable' cases of abuse (link)

ONE MILLION men women and children in Croatia tortured and killed by Catholic Church in 1940's (link)

20,000+ children abused by Catholic Church since 1945 in Netherlands (link)

150,000 children abused and killed in government and Catholic (plus Anglican) run institutions in Canada from 1876 to 1996 (link and here)

1,700+ Catholic priests accused of abuse in Brazil (link)

Catholic Church sends pedophile priests to South American churches (link and here)

Tens of thousands of children abused by Catholic priests in Ireland between 1930 to 1990 (link)

10,000+ women abused in Catholic institutions in Ireland between 1920 to 1996 (link)

Hundreds of Catholic priests abused children in the Philippines between 1980 to 2000 (link)

800,000 people massacred in Rwanda, with support from Catholic Church in 1994 (link)

Thousands of children and adults abused in Catholic 'care homes' in Scotland in the 60's and 70's (link)

300,000 babies stolen from mothers by Catholic Church in Spain between 1930 - 1990 (link)

Thousands of children tortured and abused in Catholic schools in Switzerland between 1930 to 1970 (link)

The above is just the tip of the iceberg!


Search Results related to sicarii on Search Engine

Wikipedia.org

Sicarii. One particularly extreme group, perhaps a subgroup of the Zealots, was known in Latin as sicarii, meaning "violent men" or "dagger men" (sing. sicarius, possibly a morphological reanalysis), because of their policy of killing Jews opposed to their call for war against Rome. Perhaps many Zealots …

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Bible.org

Apr 17, 2006 · James and Simon, the sons of Judas, continued the rebellion and were crucified in 46 or 48 A.D. 9 The Sicarii (from the Latin sicarius, a short sword or dagger) were a group of rebels who fought in the time of Felix they killed the High Priest Jonathan, fled to the desert and held Masada until 73. 10 Eleazar, the son of the High Priest Ananias .

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Skysports.com

Follow horse racing with Alex Hammond on Sky Sports - get live racing results, racecards, news, videos, photos, stats (horses & jockeys), plus daily tips.

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Britannica.com

Zealot, member of a Jewish sect noted for its uncompromising opposition to pagan Rome and the polytheism it professed.The Zealots were an aggressive political party whose concern for the national and religious life of the Jewish people led them to despise even Jews who sought peace and conciliation with the Roman authorities. A census of Galilee ordered by Rome in ad 6 spurred the Zealots to .

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Learnreligions.com

Jul 17, 2018 · One such offshoot of the Zealots was the Sicarii, or daggermen, a group of assassins who tried to cast off Roman rule. Their tactic was to mingle in crowds during festivals, slip up behind a victim, then kill him with their Sicari, or short curved knife.

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Skysports.com

Jun 05, 2021 · The Sicarii (USA) 17-10fav (8-11) 6w upper, mild bid, 4th of 6, 3 1/4l behind Joycee Haz Pizzaz (8-11) at Belmont Park 6f fst in May.

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Ourworldindata.org

Violent actions are usually categorised according to the perpetrator, the victim, the method, and the purpose. 3 Different definitions emphasise different characteristics, depending on the priorities of the agency involved. In our coverage of terrorism, we rely strongly on data from the Global Terrorism Database (GTD), which defines terrorism as “acts of violence by non-state actors .

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Gotquestions.org

Apr 26, 2021 · The possible association with the Sicarii allows for interesting speculation about Judas’ motives for his betrayal, but the fact that he made a conscious choice to betray Jesus (Luke 22:48) remains the same. The surname Iscariot is useful, if for no other reason, in that it leaves no doubt about which Judas is being referred to.

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Listverse.com

Aug 28, 2016 · The Sicarii were Jewish assassins named for their weapon of choice—a curved dagger called a sica. They received the name from ancient Greek historian Josephus, who wrote about the anti-Roman group’s preferred method of killing. While they were known for their large-scale raids, they are more commonly associated with their tactics of simply .

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Biblehub.com

The Sicarii were a band of fanatical murderers, who, in the disturbed times preceding the destruction of Jerusalem, went about armed with daggers, and in broad daylight and in the public thoroughfares murdered whoever was obnoxious to them. Among others they murdered the high priest Jonathan at the instigation of Felix (Josephus, 'Ant. Jud .


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According to Leff, Irvin later said the reason he was compelled to write the letter in the first place was that, listening to official Nazi broadcasts as part of his job reporting for the BBC, he continually heard Nazi news announcers citing New York Times articles by Enderis in their reports.

Sulzberger wrote back after receiving advice from another employee who told him that firing Enderis was not an option, since that would effectively shut down the Times’ Berlin operation. Instead, the publisher issued a strong response to Irvin, including a suggestion that if Irvin were to go public with his Nazi allegations about Enderis he might be slapped with a libel suit. Irvin wrote back saying that “Enderis has made no secret of his pro-Nazi sympathies.” He went on: “I don’t question the usefulness and value of Mr. Enderis to The New York Times. I do question the right of the greatest American newspaper to maintain a pro-Nazi as its chief correspondent in Berlin in times like these.”

From Chapter 5 — The White Taffeta Gown: “People Who Happen to Be Jewish”

(About Coverage of the Holocaust)

The Sulzberger wedding, complete with the bride’s “gown of white taffeta … with a full bouffant skirt,” took place as the Ponary massacres had begun to unfold. But only one of those two stories made it into the next day’s issue of The New York Times — and it was not the bloodshed at Ponary that was covered.

In fact, in all of its coverage of the war, the Times mentioned the Ponary massacres only once, in only one article out of thousands upon thousands of articles about the war but also about coal, police demerits, sporting events, and, of course, elite New York weddings. With this in mind, the questions of what Arthur Hays Sulzberger thought or how he acted as an individual become painfully irrelevant. The only question that remains is not whether Sulzberger failed as publisher of America’s most prominent newspaper. The failure is clear and unquestionable. The real question we have to ask is how badly the Times failed, what effect this failure had, and why it occurred.

From Chapter 7 — Mideast Martyr: “A Young Symbol of Violence”

(About Coverage of Israel)

France 2 and Charles Enderlin lost the case. But by this point, the libel case was of only secondary importance to the findings of the independent French expert who concluded that Muhammad Al-Dura could not possibly have been shot or killed by Israeli gunfire.

Seven years after the incident that created a “symbol” of hatred and provided a nearly universal thirst for vengeance among the world’s jihadists, an independent French expert had found not that it was simply unlikely or improbable that Israeli fire killed Al Dura but that it was impossible. The strange and inexplicable “anomalies” regarding the video, the fact that the famous fifty-five seconds were narrated by someone who had not been present during the incident (and that audiences were not made aware of this fact) and the Israeli investigation all foreshadowed what the independent French expert eventually concluded.

The question, then, is how The New York Times — which so emphatically insisted on the Palestinian narrative of the incident in the early days of the intifada, which proclaimed Al-Dura a symbol and which published stories from multiple writers who all maintained Israeli soldiers murdered an innocent boy — reacted to the findings. What, any Times reader who had followed the story would be compelled to ask, would The New York Times say? Would it print a retraction? Would it run a story about the French court’s findings? Would it run a series about the progression of the case and what came to be known as the Al-Dura affair?

The answer to all of those questions was “no.” The New York Times did not publish a single story about the appeals case or its findings. It ran only a small blog post about it, which neglected to quote from the French expert’s report or its findings. None of the reporters who wrote about Al-Dura in 2000 and in the following years bothered to return to the topic when the truth surfaced. There was neither a retraction, nor a correction, nor an editorial printed in the Times. It seemed that after the paper’s initial frenzy of unsubstantiated Al-Dura reporting, it had nothing more to say on the topic.

Ashley Rindsberg is an author, essayist and freelance journalist. In 2010, Rindsberg traveled to Nicaragua to investigate the disappearance and death of his best friend, an experience that inspired his novel, He Falls Alone.


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