Skip To Content
Fast Forward

L.A. Review: Forward’s Gorka Coverage Shows Splits In American Jewry

The Forward’s reporting of Sebastian Gorka’s ties to a neo-Nazi nationalist group in Hungary has kicked off a raucous debate in the American Jewish community. A recent essay in the Los Angeles Review of Books by Jacob Labendz takes the measure of the discussion — and according to him, the Forward came out ahead of Tablet.

Labendz, a professor of Jewish studies at Youngstown State University in Ohio, argued that Tablet’s publication of several columns defending Gorka gave the White House counterterrorism aide undeserved cover from the Forward’s reporting. He goes on to deconstruct the words of Tablet columnist Liel Liebovitz, who has defended Gorka, and editor Alana Newhouse, who has defended publishing those articles. “Just like the media outlets which provide Gorka with a platform for spreading Islamophobia, so too must Tablet shoulder some responsibility for the ideas and authors it chooses to promote, normalize, and legitimize,” he wrote.

But Labendz added that while much of the current debate is over whether Gorka himself is anti-Semitic (which the Forward has not accused him of being), we miss something more important and obvious: Gorka’s Islamophobia and incompetence for the job he’s been tasked with.

Contact Daniel J. Solomon at [email protected] or on Twitter @DanielJSolomon

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.