Palin accuses press of manufacturing hatred after Ariz. shooting

Posted Jan. 12, 2011, at 10:57 a.m.
Last modified Jan. 12, 2011, at 4:37 p.m.
Sarah Palin in July 2010.
AP file photo
Sarah Palin in July 2010.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Sarah Palin posted a nearly eight-minute video on her Facebook page early Wednesday, accusing journalists and pundits of inciting hatred and violence in the wake of a deadly Arizona shooting that gravely wounded U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and killed six.

Last spring, Palin targeted Giffords’ district as one of 20 that should be taken back. Palin has been criticized for marking each district with the cross hairs of a gun sight.

In the video, the 2008 GOP vice presidential candidate said vigorous debates are a cherished tradition. But she said after the election, both sides find common ground, even though they disagree.

“But, especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn. That is reprehensible,” she said.

The term “blood libel” is the false allegation that Jews kill non-Jews, especially Christian children, to acquire blood for the Passover or other Jewish rituals, according to the Jewish Virtual Library. It has been used in other contexts, and Palin’s meaning was not clear. The term was previously used in related to the Arizona shooting in a Wall Street Journal op-ed article on Monday.

Her aides did not immediately respond to an e-mail early Wednesday.

Jared Loughner, 22, is accused of trying to assassinate Giffords, who is Jewish, wounding 12 others and killing six people.

“There are those who claim political rhetoric is to blame for the despicable act of this deranged, apparently apolitical criminal,” Palin said. “And they claim political debate has somehow gotten more heated just recently. But when was it less heated? Back in those ‘calm days’ when political figures literally settled their differences with dueling pistols?”

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