It didn’t take long for the US State Department to issue a strident condemnation of the talkback laws which appeared yesterday in the Israel National News blog, “Hollywood to the Holy Land,” written by novelist, Tzvi Fishman.
Jewish Blogger Tzvi Fishman
State Department spokesman, Steve Stevens, said: “The rules set forth in Fishman’s blog are racist and a clear violation of the principle of free speech which America holds so important. They are an affront to every homosexual, Christian, and free thinker. It is no coincidence that this deplorable enactment immediately followed the new law passed by the Israeli Knesset which bans boycotts against segments of the Israeli population. We are very concerned with this dangerous swing to the right and are keeping watch on the situation.”
Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, issued a terse statement to the press later in the afternoon. “While I usually enjoy Mr. Fishman’s blogs, and agree that all Jews should get out of America and move to Israel, his ban on gay priests is a crime against humanity and a stain on the proud pluralistic history of the Jewish People.”
"I also think all Jews should move to Israel."
Murry Wolfman, head of the powerful, New York based, Anti-Semitism Conference, also was quick to join the condemnation. “This is not the Israel we believe in. People like Fishman, Baruch Marzal, and Yaacov Katz are ruining the country. If the religious take over, they will ban anyone who doesn’t practice Orthodoxy. This dangerous neo-fascism must be cut off in the bud.”
Meanwhile, in an unusual alliance, the Vatican has joined forces with the World Committee for Gay Gays in issuing a joint statement condemning Fishman’s ban on missionizing and homosexuality. “What is the difference between the blog ‘Hollywood to the Holy Land’ and Nazi Germany?” their announcement asks, adding, “Of all people, the Jews should behave with a higher standard.” WCGG chairman, Bruce Luce, says that he has already sign up 200 gays and clergymen who will be setting out on a flotilla from Rome to Israel, in protest of the blog.
New flotilla sets sail from Rome
About 50 gays, dressed only in their underpants, were waiting for Fishman to leave his apartment building for morning prayers. The demonstrators held up signs reading, “Gays Are Not Goys!” But the crowd soon dispersed when they learned that Fishman had left his home before dawn to pray at the Kotel.
Issuing a statement on Fishman’s behalf, the “Cyberspace Coalition of Bloggers” said: “The attacks against a fellow blogger are insidious and resemble the kind of nefarious actions we are seeing in Iran and Syria.”
In a brief telephone comment, the controversial INN blogger said, “My detractors are not up in arms against me – they are up in arms against G-d and His Torah.”
In the wake of the controversy, the Palestinians are calling for a United Nations General Assembly condemnation of Israel, claiming that the rules which Fishman has instituted are aimed at denying the legitimacy of the Palestinian presence in Palestine.
The Israel “Peace Now” group has petitioned the Israel Supreme Court to close down Arutz 7 and Israel National News, which has so far refused to issue a statement.
"Brogger Fishman - Leave Buddha alone!"
In Tokyo, a Japanese clergyman has set himself on fire in front of the Israeli Embassy. His body turned to ashes before the sign he was holding, “Broggers! Leave Buddha alone!” went up in flames alongside him.