Anti-Semitism finds a home on left-leaning radio station
As part of the Pacifica Radio network of commercial-free, listener-supported and unabashedly progressive community radio stations, Los Angeles station KPFK might seem like an unlikely forum for naked anti-Semitism.
Yet one of its weekly talk shows is becoming just that. "La Causa" ("The Cause"), a bilingual mix of English and Spanish which airs every Wednesday night, features callers, most of them Latino, who rant about ZOG ["Zionist Occupied Government"], a term coined by neo-Nazis and other white supremacists.
The show's hosts, who go by the names Augustín Cebada and Rafael Tlaloc, are more than just passive enablers of anti-Semitic rhetoric. They actively promote conspiracy theories about Jewish control of media and world governments, referring to Ponzi scheme crook Bernie Madoff as "that Jewish scam artist." Tlaloc said he felt no sympathy for Madoff's victims, many of whom were Jewish, because they were "shylocks and shysters."
Also, as the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles reported in a major article on "La Causa" published March 18, Cebada frequently attacks Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa for supporting Israel and for "dancing around with a yarmulke on his head," apparently referring to a 2007 charity telethon where the L.A. mayor danced the horah while wearing a traditional skullcap.
"Cebada, co-host Rafael Tlaloc and their callers draw parallels between Latinos in the United States and Palestinians in the Middle East," the journal reported. "Just as American descendants of Europeans 'should go back to Europe,' so, too, the descendants of European Jews in Israel should leave the Middle East and go live in Europe."
"La Causa" is tightly linked to La Voz de Aztlán, a rabidly anti-Semitic website based in Whittier, Calif. La Voz de Aztlán has been identified as a hate website by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
"La Causa" hosts and callers often reference La Voz de Aztlán as a credible source of information, and La Voz de Aztlán webmaster Hector Carreon has been interviewed on "La Causa" as a legitimate political analyst. Although a recording of that 2007 interview is no longer available in the KPFK online archives, Carreon boasts about an ongoing collaboration with "La Causa" on the La Voz de Aztlán website. "La Voz de Aztlán is working with the staff of 'La Causa' to create additional radio programming at KPFK for La Raza," Carreon wrote. "Anyone interested in this project should contact La Voz de Aztlán." KPFK was founded in 1959. It's the most powerful public radio station in the Western United States, according to its website, and its programming is normally liberal to left wing. Its official mission statement declares that KPFK seeks to promote "a lasting understanding between nations and between the individuals of all nations, races, creeds and colors."
Cebada and Tlaloc did not respond to E-mailed requests for an interview.
Editor's note: Between the time when this news item was prepared and its publication, KPFK indefinitely suspended “La Causa” because the show "facilitated hate speech."