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Fighting off a racist label

by ALEX NEWMAN Special to the Democrat-Gazette | September 17, 2017 at 2:05 a.m.

In a dishonest effort to smear the constitutionalist John Birch Society, Washington Post columnist Marc Thiessen wrote some nasty information recently. When he got called on it, he made just a tiny adjustment in his Post column. But now, the record needs to be set straight.

The column, headlined in the Post as "Yes, antifa is the moral equivalent of neo-Nazis," pointed out that the violent antifa group should be condemned because it is morally equivalent with National Socialists (Nazis). Fine. But Thiessen also included a major error that calls into question everything he says. "In the 1960s, William F. Buckley excommunicated the anti-Semitic John Birch Society from the respectable right," wrote Thiessen.

After being made aware of the error, the Post and Thiessen backed down, but only slightly. Instead of issuing a full correction and apology, which other papers did immediately, they added a few words as cover, softening it to "widely believed then to be anti-Semitic." This would be the equivalent of calling somebody a thief, then, upon realizing that the person had actually been a good samaritan working to stop the thief, adding that the libeled victim was "widely believed to be a thief," without pointing out that the person was trying to stop thievery.

From its founding in 1958, the Society was open to Jews and people of all races and diverse creeds, and founder Robert Welch selected prominent Jewish patriots to serve on the National Council. The first was Alfred Kohlberg, who served on the original JBS National Council. Jews continue to serve on the Council today, including Andy Dlinn.

Another Jewish leader, Dr. Sam Blumenfeld, co-authored a book with this writer and was involved with the Society for decades, even working for it. So passionate was Blumenfeld about JBS that, with other prominent Jewish Birchers such as Alan Stang and Holocaust survivor Georgia Gabor, he created the Jewish Society of Americanists. In a statement of principles, they said the aim was "to demonstrate to our fellow Americans and coreligionists that the Americanist principles, beliefs and aims of the John Birch Society are based on the very precepts of Judaism." They estimated about 1,000 of the approximately 100,000 JBS members at the time were Jewish.

Even official investigations have documented the truth. In a 1963 report that is available online, a California Senate Fact-Finding Committee concluded that not only was the Society not racist or anti-Semitic, it specifically opposed racism and anti-Semitism. In fact, Jewish Birchers quoted in the official report said they felt more welcome in JBS than in American society at large. "At any rate, our investigations have disclosed no evidence of anti-Semitism on the part of anyone connected with the John Birch Society in California, and much evidence to the effect that it opposes racism in all forms," the investigators said.

The reason establishment voices such as Thiessen and Buckley smear JBS is because it has been so effective at stopping their agenda, referred to by President Trump as "globalism." Indeed, many establishment leaders, including Thiessen's fellow Council on Foreign Relations members, have admitted that JBS has been extraordinarily successful in protecting the Constitution, the independence, and the liberties of the American people.

Truth is our only weapon. Learn the facts for yourself.

Alex Newman is a journalist who serves as a freelance contributor to, among other publications, one of the John Birch Society's magazines.

Editorial on 09/17/2017

Print Headline: Fighting off a racist label

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