Alexander Cockburn and the Lobby

Interesting tidbit in this obit of Alexander Cockburn by Charles Glass — Crusading reporter and polemicist who was unafraid to espouse unpopular causes - The Independent:

"Ridgeway wrote: 'Rupert Murdoch, when he owned the Voice, was said to gag on some of Alex's pointed epithets, but he never did anything about it. He actually had us both to lunch and offered us a column.' Murdoch's tolerance did not extend to defending Cockburn when the Boston Phoenix disclosed that he had received a grant of $10,000 from the Institute of Arab Studies to research a book on Israel's 1982 invasion of Lebanon. Although other journalists had accepted grants from the American Enterprise Institute and similar organisations without attracting protests, He was forced to leave the Voice amid complaints from Zionists. The editors of the Wall Street Journal, unlike those at the ostensibly liberal Voice, went on publishing the column he had been writing since 1980 (until 1990) and defended him in an editorial headlined 'Alexflap.'"

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Also this bit about Elliott Abrams, whose career defending Jewish supremacism spans so many decades:

If he attacked the strong, he defended those whom respectable journalists shunned: hunters, gun owners, Scientologists, Edward Said, Norman Finkelstein, the people of Palestine and East Timor and the disaffected, unemployed men who ended up in armed militias. He also defended Noam Chomsky and the editor of Index on Censorship, George Theiner, from attacks by Elliot Abrams, then Reagan's Assistant Secretary of State, who condemned Theiner for publishing Chomsky at all in 1986.

Cockburn responded: "It is not often that one can find so bizarre a case: Abrams superintending a campaign of mass murder in Central America while finding the time to write to a tiny magazine 3,000 miles away about the folly of efforts to discuss censorship in the coverage of Israel in the press of that country's chief sponsor." His criticisms of Israeli occupation policies earned him accusations of anti-Semitism, which he countered in his essay "My Life as an 'Anti-Semite'" (a title no doubt inspired by Grigor von Rezzori's classic Memoirs of an Anti-Semite).