With a mere four-word response at an event Monday on the campus of Tufts University, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) found herself accused by a conservative magazine of making a toxic comparison.
The Massachusetts senator fielded a question from Eva Moseley, who expressed concern about the Israeli offensive in Gaza.
“I was also a Holocaust refugee and I’m extremely concerned that Jews don’t do to another people what was done to them,” Moseley said.
“I think that’s fair,” Warren said.
Based on that exchange, The Weekly Standard’s Daniel Halper had red meat to feed his conservative readership.
As Halper interpreted the response, Warren had deemed it acceptable to compare Israel’s actions to the atrocities committed by the Nazis.
“At an event today at Tufts University in Massachusetts, Democratic senator Elizabeth Warren said it was ‘fair’ when an activist compared Israel’s actions in Gaza to the Holocaust,” wrote Halper, the online editor for the conservative magazine.
The exchange between Warren and Moseley makes it clear that the Weekly Standard’s characterization distorted what was said. But on Tuesday, Halper wasn’t exactly backing down.
“Seriously? In that case, what did she mean when she said, ‘I think that’s fair’?” he told TPM in an email.
To his credit, Halper included the full interaction and video involving the senator and activist in his post.
He also drew attention to Moseley’s signature on an online petition that condemned “Israel’s ongoing massacre in Gaza” and described the offensive as “the latest chapter in more than a century of Zionist colonialism, dispossession, ethnic cleaning, racism, and genocide — including Israel’s very establishment through the uprooting and displacement of over 750,000 Palestinians during the 1947-1948 Nakba.”
When Moseley asked if “the Palestinians have a right to self-defense,” Warren said they do.
“Of course. So, and the answer is yes. The direction we need to be moving is not to more war,” Warren said. “The direction we need to be moving, as I said, I believe we need to move to a two-state solution where both peoples can be secure and safe within their own borders. So, I’m there.”
Warren’s office highlighted that portion of her response in panning Halper’s characterization.
“The Weekly Standard grossly mischaracterized Senator Warren’s response, in which she expressed her strong desire for an end to violence in the region and her support for a negotiated solution that creates safety and security for both Israelis and Palestinians,” Warren’s press secretary Lacey Rose told TPM in an email.