Here is Tuvia Tenenbom's response to a recent article by David Mikics in Tablet Magazine.
Tablet magazine, seemingly an online publication with low journalistic standards, came out today with a neurotic personal attack penned by a fellow named David Mikics and titled: "Tuvia Tenenbom Is a Weak, Insecure, Blustery Jew.” Why go personal? Why not have a respectful argument?
But let’s not talk about respect, but journalism and accurate reporting.
Almost right from the start, this article is ripe with inaccuracies. "That’s what Israeli author and Meretz party activist Alona Kimhi posted on her Facebook page after being interviewed by the gadfly and journalist-provocateur Tuvia Tenenbom," writes David in the first paragraph. Well, Alona Kimhi was not interviewed by the Weak and Insecure Jew, and is nowhere to be found in "Catch the Jew!"
What makes David make up stories?
"Tenenbom was born an ultra-Orthodox Jew in Bnei Brak, but freed himself from religion as a teenager, after his family moved to America,” David claims in the second paragraph. Well, wrong: No “family” came to America.
In the third paragraph it says: "A few years ago Tenenbom traveled through Germany asking people how they felt about Jews and wrote up his findings in a book called 'I Sleep in Hitler’s Room'”. Wrong again. This is not what that book is about, and never was. If David only bothered to read the book before commenting it would be nice...
On and on, David's article contains one inaccuracy after another and one taking-out-of-context after another.
Why the inaccuracies? Why the venom? This becomes clear only later in the article.
"Here it is Tenenbom who lacks realism,” David muses, "for he seems to think that Jews must continue to populate the West Bank, since a peace deal isn’t coming anyway. This is a profoundly reckless point of view, because it means that Israel has no leverage, no way of safely making concessions in order to extract concessions from the other side. Is it really so important that Jews live in Sheikh Jarrah?”
For starters, David might know Brooklyn but he seems to have little to no clue about Sheikh Jarrah or were it is actually located (in the middle of Jerusalem), but more interesting is his argument: Israel should give up territories, even if it will gain nothing by so doing, because it would be “reckless” to do otherwise. Reckless? Profoundly reckless? Wait: Dividing a country in half, while moving hundreds of thousands of families from their homes, and all for no tangible gain or purpose is reckless?
This kind of argumentation, defying logic and reason, explains why David went personal.
In Catch the Jew! (Gefen, 2015) Tuvia Tenenbom uses humor and charm to explore life in Israel and Palestine. In the course of his research he uncovers an international agenda to find fault with Jews and Israel. These people have one goal; to Catch the Jew doing something wrong! To order "Catch the Jew!" click here.