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How anti-Semitic is BLM? If you would educate yourself about racism, you should educate yourself about all racism

Credit: Robin Van Lonkhuijsen / ANP / AFP / Getty

Credit: Robin Van Lonkhuijsen / ANP / AFP / Getty


July 10, 2020   4 mins

The aim of most supporters of Black Lives Matter, which is equality, is urgent and just. Even so, some BLM activists embrace anti-Zionism and, as they do so, they segue into anti-Semitism too. It seemed for a while that the movement would be defiled by this. But this week, it looks like the tide is rolling back.

It began badly when Black Lives Matter UK tweeted: “As Israel moves forward with the annexation of the West Bank, and mainstream British politics is gagged of the right to critique Zionism, and Israel’s settler-colonial pursuits, we loudly and clearly stand beside our Palestinian comrades. FREE PALESTINE.”

Here is a libel about disproportionate Jewish power. No one is “gagged of the right” to critique Zionism. This is nonsense. The Shadow Foreign Secretary Lisa Nandy has called for sanctions against Israel if the annexation of the West Bank proceeds. That is fair criticism, and no one called it anti-Semitic, because it isn’t.

But this tweet was. It places all Zionists from liberal to insane in the same space. It excludes liberal zionists from so-called progressive movements. This, considering what Jews have contributed to progressive thought — the creation of Communism, for instance — is what Jeremy Corbyn might call ironic.

Because inside this FREE PALESTINE slogan there is no answer to what should happen to the Jews of Israel when Palestine is free. The question is not even asked. It is as if it does not matter.

I asked BLM UK for details because I think their cause is essential: what does freedom for Palestine mean to them? Are BLM UK for two states in Israel / Palestine, or one? What is the goal of their activism in Israel / Palestine? What do they seek?

They did not answer. Why should they? Why should support of a cause, long denied justice, be dependent on a caveat: that Israel must, as Martin Luther King said, exist. I would answer that it should matter to Jews, morally and practically, that we support victims of murderous racism, in which we have so much experience; but we should also be allowed to support self-determination for Jewish people without being named murderous racists.

It should matter to BLM too. Some Jews among the young ultra-Orthodox of New York City protest with them. Other Jews and allies fear BLM because they think it calls Israel an illegal state and imperils Jewish life.

None of this will surprise Jews, for whom the price of admittance into progressive spaces is denunciation of Israel in any form. And so, if they proceed, they protest with only half themselves. This is long a dilemma of the Jew in the secular world: a holding back of something. Jewish lesbians were thrown off the Chicago Dyke March for holding a rainbow flag painted with a Star of David. Women’s march leaders praised Louis Farrakhan, who calls Jews “satanic”.

Almost no one on the Left acknowledges that the UN voted for partition in Israel / Palestine in 1947 and the Jews said yes and the Arabs said no; or that Jordan and Egypt swallowed much of the Palestinian state after 1948 and they are not damned because they are not Jewish states; or that more that 800,000 Jews left or were expelled from Arab lands after 1948 and they cannot go home. These Arab Jews are erased from this conversation: what is that but racism?

There is a strong moral case for Israel within its 1967 borders, but you will not hear it: demonisation is preferred. In 2016, BLM affiliated groups called the occupation a genocide. It is unjust, and regularly murderous, but it is not a genocide. Zionism is called a 19th century invention, when it is, in fact, a Bronze Age invention: ignorance then, the foundation of all racism.

There is more anti-Semitism within BLM activism, and it looks further back than Israel for inspiration. The American rapper Ice Cube published the infamous Mear One mural on Twitter — the anti-Semitic Monopoly game in which Jews oppress the world that caused Corbyn so much agony — as part of his BLM activism. So did BLM Oxford, although it apologised; it had not realised it was anti-Semitic. This does not surprise me, because the discourse on Israel / Palestine on the Left is an affront, and idiotic, full of insinuations, omissions and performative lies.

This week, DeSean Jackson, an American Football star, posted a false quote attributed to Adolf Hitler on Instagram: “because the white Jews knows [sic] that the Negroes are the real Children of Israel and to keep Americas [sic] secret the Jews will blackmail America. They will extort America, their plan for world domination won’t work if the Negroes know who they were…” He has since apologised too. But Stephen Jackson, a former basketball star and BLM activist, defended DeSean Jackson, saying, “He’s speaking the truth”.

This is a libel, but there is light too: after the DeSean Jackson affair African Americans began to address their communities on anti-Semitism. Zach Banner, an American Football player, said: “I want to preach to the black and brown community: that we need to uplift them [Jews] and put our arms around them just as much when we talk about the BLM and we talk about elevating ourselves. We can’t move forward while allowing ourselves to leave another minority race in the dark.” It was a humane intervention into a schism that threatened to become a tragedy; and there have now been many others.

Zach Banner is right, and that humanity should go both ways. Jews have a responsibility to support his kind of BLM. If you would educate yourself about racism you should educate yourself about all racism. They rise ever together, and, if you don’t know that, you’re a fool.


Tanya Gold is a freelance journalist.

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David Bell
David Bell
4 years ago

This is a microcosm of the BLM Organisation and the whole BLM movement because it is based on a racist idea. The idea that the colour of your skin is your defining factor. “White Privilege” has become the totem of there racist ideal. It doesn’t matter if you are Christian or Jew, rich or poor, from a land of peace or a land of war, if you have been educated or not, if you are white you can be abused, taunted and ignored because of your whiteness.

BLM is what it professes to detest, racist to it core, and the divisions it is causing will take a long time to heal.

John Nutkins
John Nutkins
4 years ago
Reply to  David Bell

Indeed. BLM, besides being racist, divisive, discriminatory and thus counter-productive, is profoundly insulting to the white and other non-black peoples living in Britain. Its supporters too are ignoramuses and idiots, noisy, loud, ranting and illiberal bigots. I abhor the whole disgusting rabble and hope, and believe, that the BLM ‘movement’ will rapidly disappear up its own fundament, where it belongs in the first place.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
4 years ago

‘The aim of most supporters of Black Lives Matter, which is equality, is urgent and just.’

The aim of most BLM supporters is to make a noise, to riot, and to tear down statues etc. The aim of the leaders of BLM is to destroy our civilisation. The fact is that black people, and people of all colours, already have equality and across the west it is illegal to discriminate on the basis of colours. Moreover, like everyone else they receive free state education, in the UK they receive free healthcare, and they are eligible for all manner of welfare.

If they choose to waste that education so that they are ‘left behind’ then that is their choice, just as it is the choice of the millions of white people who waste their education. (Admittedly, the west’s state education system are utterly hopeless and even those who leave school and even university with countless qualifications know nothing about anything). Similarly it is their choice to commit the disproportionate amount of crimes that black people tend to commit in the UK and the US. Other ‘people of colour’ do not seem to have this problem, notwithstanding the grooming gangs etc. (Actually, it is only fair to acknowledge that Albanians, pound for pound, are probably the most criminally inclined in the UK).

So, the usual nonsense from Tanya Gold. As for the anti-semitism thing then yes, it does seem to exist, as we saw last year from the statistics on those who are most likely to commit attacks on Jews in New York. But the left in general is always anti-semitic because it hates productive people who do not depend on the state.

Robert G
Robert G
4 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

To which statistics do you refer? I just ran a search and came across a Jerusalem Post article. It says records from the first three quarters of 2019 revealed that anti-Semitic attacks in NYC were carried out by 33% African-Americans and 60% white people. NYC is 25% African-American and 44% white.

John Nutkins
John Nutkins
4 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Well said.

Stephen Follows
Stephen Follows
4 years ago

‘The Harper’s letter is compromised by the unpleasant agenda of some of its signatories (including, most problematically, JK Rowling)’

And that, folks, was written in The Telegraph. Yes, The Telegraph. Absolutely nowhere is safe now:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk

Andrew D
Andrew D
4 years ago

Fair comment, but please don’t say that the creation of Communism contributed to progressive thought

Andrew Baldwin
Andrew Baldwin
4 years ago

Great opinion piece by Douglas as usual. However, I do have a caveat with his description of David Frum as the only signatory of the letter from the Centre-Right. Frum was part of the centre-right, but the Trump Derangement Syndrome sufferer is clearly now a member of the left, so I would say there wasn’t a single signatory of the petition who was from the right. Frum is a Canadian, and he is an example of the fairly common Canadian phenomenon of conservative, as well as Conservative, advocates who drift to the left over time. Former Progressive Conservative PM Joe Clark is another example. Everyone, including Douglas, cites his experience working in the Bush White House. That ended in February 2002 and since then he hasn’t worked in any Republican administration or for any official Republican presidential candidate. So much for him being a giant figure on the American Centre-Right. It was really touch and go whether he would vote Republican in 2008 and 2012, although he finally did so. He voted for Crooked Hillary in 2016 and will likely vote for Creepy Joe this year. When he talks about voting problems in the US, he sounds just like any Democrat, excoriating alleged voting suppression, which favours Republicans, and virtually ignoring non-citizen voting, which favours Democrats. He keeps his membership in the Republican Party because liberal media, especially the Canadian Broadcasting Corpn, just love to interview faux-conservatives like him, and he gets a bigger platform than if he admitted he was just another garden variety liberal. He doesn’t really belong in the Republican Party but he will remain there, as Republicans don’t believe in cancel culture, nor should they.
The denunciation of Trump in the petition shows the people who wrote it are not all that serious about ending cancel culture. If they were they would be looking to build the broadest tent possible of people who take the same view on the issue, not antagonizing people who are Trump supporters, or, for that matter, people who would never vote for him for one reason or another, but think it is over-the-top, as it is, to consider him a threat to American democracy.

mzeemartin8
mzeemartin8
4 years ago

The open letter was compromised from the very start, taking as a matter of faith that the far right – I suppose anyone a millimeter to the right of Frum – is at once exploiting cancel culture and the historical progenitors of it. I quote:

The free exchange of information and ideas, the lifeblood of a liberal society, is daily becoming more constricted. While we have come to expect this on the radical right, censoriousness is also spreading more widely in our culture: an intolerance of opposing views, a vogue for public shaming and ostracism, and the tendency to dissolve complex policy issues in a blinding moral certainty …

As though cancel culture is a very recent adaptation of the left!

The authors bent so far backwards to establish their progressive credentials they damn near broke their backs – and it still wasn’t enough.

To quote Burl Ives, “When will they ever learn?”

Bill Gaffney
Bill Gaffney
4 years ago

The Lady is wrong regarding BLM. The BLM organization has nothing to do with “race”. BLM are a Marxist organization and terrorists. She is incorrect regarding Israel. Israel has every right to defend itself against countries and terrorist organizations that call for its destruction. Annexing the WB provides a buffer to protect itself. Finally, she misuses “racism”. Technically there is only one “race” and we are all in it. The groupings are only subsets of the human race. Anti-semitism (currently not all Jewish people qualify as semites) as it is applied Israel Jews and their religious brothers and sisters around the world is not about race as “Jew” is not a race anymore than Islamist or Baptist’s, etc., are “races”.

Mark Stein
Mark Stein
4 years ago

This whole exercise had nothing to do with the free exchange of ideas, reasoned debate or cancel-culture. Political conservatives should still be cancelled, stripped from their livelihoods and even prosecuted for ‘wrong-think’. The goal was only to protect their own – who may, even inadvertently, find themselves advancing or defending a point not exactly inline with the latest liberal mob position. Some signers to the letter themselves have called for the banishment of ‘non-progressive’ speech from the media and academia and vile name-calling of those who disagree with them. We are entering an era of the mob, our plural society is being eroded as we enter an era of complete ideological conformity.

Ted Ditchburn
Ted Ditchburn
4 years ago

The only real sign of hope in what is rapidly becoming quite a new dark age for intellectual openess and reasoned debate is that the various activists who are happy to have done all the thinking they ever feel they may need to do, are starting to devour each other.

The terms left and right wing have long ceased to hold any real meaning and are just thrown about from force of habit, like swear words in football pub argument, or a marketing meeting.

They used to say hatred eventually corrodes the vessels that hold it. Hopefully that is proving to be the case as the woke universe dissolves in it’s own totalitarian puddle of zealotry.

John Nutkins
John Nutkins
4 years ago

You lost me with your inane assertion that the aim of BLM is equality – urgent and just.
BLM is divisive, discriminatory, racist and insulting to the people of Britain, and toppling statues and burning the national flag on the Cenotaph offensive and disgusting acts by thugs, hooligans and ignoramuses. BLM will have a severe backlash by resulting in precisely the opposite effect – antagonism towards black people – before it disappears up its own fundament where it belongs in the first place.

Otto Christensen
Otto Christensen
4 years ago

” I am all for free speech except for speech about things with which I disagree.” High minded ideas and grand notions like freedom of speech attract moralists like ravens to a carcass. Rather than ideological petitions by the self righteous i would welcome a statement of understanding that free societies are free because there are agreed upon standards, conventions and rules of law the elements of which can be argued.

johntshea2
johntshea2
4 years ago

Interesting and informative! One small caveat. J. K. Rowling’s sales of 500+ million books are very impressive, but Agatha Christie’s sales have long exceeded 2 BILLION.

Andrew Baldwin
Andrew Baldwin
4 years ago

My wife was born in Serbia proper but has family living in Republica Srpska, so I feel I have a personal stake in what happens there. I’m sure James’s opinion piece is well-intentioned, but it gives a highly biased and inaccurate version, not only of events, but of basic background.
Only by the most tortured definition of diverse would Bosnia and Herzegovina qualify as “the most ethnically diverse of the new republics following the fall of communist Yugoslavia.” Almost everyone spoke the same Serbo-Croatian language: Bosniaks (or Muslims), Serbs and Croats. Moreover the Bosnian Serbs, unlike Serbs in Serbia proper, spoke the ijekavian variant of Serbo-Croatian, like the Bosniaks and Croats, rather than the ekavian dialect spoken by most Serbs in Serbia, and they favour the Latin script over Cyrillic. Bosnia and Herzegovina didn’t remotely compare for diversity with, say, Macedonia, with its Albanian, Serb, Turkish, Bulgar and Gypsy minorities.
James starts with a full-blown war in Bosnia and Herzegovina and criticizes the British government for how it dealt with it. It doesn’t occur to him that the process in which Yugoslavia was allowed to breakup was imbecilic, although it certainly was. There were never free elections held throughout Yugoslavia at the federal level to negotiate demands for secession from Slovenia, Croatia or Bosnia and Herzegovina. The problem here was surely not so much with the UK, but with the EU, which badly underperformed.
There is no mention by James of atrocities or concentration camps set up by the Croats or the Bosniaks, although they did exist. The well-documented Islamist ideology of Bosniak leader Alija Izetbegović is ignored, as is Croatian President Franjo Tudjman’s design to split Bosnia and Herzegovina with the government of Slobodan MiloÅ¡ević.
The massacre at Srebrenica was a war crime, but it wasn’t genocide. A genocidal army doesn’t separate villagers between men and women and children and only execute the men. The Beslan massacre, the worst terrorist atrocity committed on European soil, although it claimed many fewer victims would seem to much better fit the definition of a genocidal massacre. Most of its victims were schoolchildren, boys and girls. For some reason, it seems to have just been forgotten while the Srebrenica massacre is brought up by Western journos again and again with monotonous regularity.

James thinks we should learn something from the Srebrenica massacre, but it’s not clear what that is. The Republika Srpska has not disappeared. It’s still there, even if Hillary Clinton would like it to vanish. I really wonder if opinion pieces like James’s, with their demonization of Serbs, don’t serve to delegitimize and undermine it. So far independent Bosnia and Herzegovina has not been a roaring success. Nevertheless, its currency board has given it a stable currency and it is a potential candidate country for EU membership. People of good will should really give the people there a chance to forget the tragic civil war there and build a future together. If they succeed, it could well be the model for the next Yugoslavia.

Leti Bermejo
Leti Bermejo
4 years ago

what should happen to the Jews of Israel when Palestine is free. The question is not even asked. It is as if it does not matter.

I suggest you turn the question around. Ask yourself what should happen to the moslems of Palestine when Israel ‘allows’ them to ‘have’ their own country. The question is not even asked. Its as if they don’t matter.

(Not easy is it?)

john smith
john smith
4 years ago

“Anti-semitic” is a poor way to write it because the term doesn’t mean opposition to semites. It means hatred of Jews specifically so should be written “antisemitic”, even though some spellcheckers try to correct that. It’s like how “hogwash” does not mean a bath for pigs anymore, and strawberry is not a straw or a berry. It’s a small thing, but I think worth changing. See also here: https://www.holocaustrememb

Brian Burnell
Brian Burnell
4 years ago

As always, the guilty politicians wriggle free from censure. A better outcome that would concentrate the minds of our current lot, would be to arraign Rifkind, and especially Hurd at the ICC in The Hague alongside the other butchers. They were as guilty. It might also have restrained Blair when his turn in charge came.

CYRIL NAMMOCK
CYRIL NAMMOCK
4 years ago

There’s no point in trying to reason with these people.

henrysporn
henrysporn
4 years ago
Reply to  CYRIL NAMMOCK

which people?

latke.queen.margalit
latke.queen.margalit
4 years ago
Reply to  henrysporn

Yes.

Sean L
Sean L
4 years ago

Murray passes over the sacrificial character of culture, that’s to say human existence: that humans are *political*, can be reconciled only at the expense of a third party.

The notion of an ‘ethic around which we might unite’ is utopian/ Rousseauist. If we didn’t see others as rivals, both individually and collectively, we wouldn’t be political, requiring laws and states to enforce them, in the first place.

The original source of order, ie of human community is religion understood as a unifying principle, engendering as Roger Scruton put it, a ‘pre-political loyalty’. He characterised the nation in these terms as form of political loyalty presupposed by West/Christendom. Precisely what’s in question here.

Of the predicament of West, writing in the 1970s, Rene Girard used the term “omnipresent victim”. As he saw it, the “sacrificial resources” of Christianity having been exhausted, Christian sympathy for the victim was being turned against Christianity, licensing persecution in the name of the victim for political power, ie a resurgence of archaic or pagan religion in Christian guise.

Adrian Smith
Adrian Smith
4 years ago

So Black Lives Matter, Jewish Lives Matter, Palestinian Live Matter, are there any lives that do not matter or do All Lives Matter?

jlclark740
jlclark740
4 years ago
Reply to  Adrian Smith

All Lives Matter!

Andrew Baldwin
Andrew Baldwin
4 years ago

“Almost no one on the Left acknowledges that … Jordan and Egypt swallowed much of the Palestinian state after 1948 and they are not damned because they are not Jewish states.” Don’t know about that. I wouldn’t acknowledge it either. There was a British Mandate of Palestine before 1948, but there was never really a Palestinian state. Now we have Israel, and two little so-called Palestinian statelets in Gaza and the West Bank. Maybe they should be swallowed up again. Gaza definitely should disappear, whether it goes back to Israel or back to Egypt. People in the West Bank could maybe make a go of it as an independent country, and if they want to call it Palestine, I guess they can, but it’s hard to see the need for one more Arab country to add to the Arab bloc at the UN. It would probably be better for Jordan and the West Bank to be under one government again. The ruler of the
Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan wouldn’t want its name changed to Palestine, though, so there would be no Palestinian state in the world. No loss at all, really, more like a clear gain for humanity.

Ann Ceely
Ann Ceely
3 years ago

What a wonderful article!

I was brought up in the Christian tradition of humility and making the best of what you’ve been given.

That’s how I upset my Japanese sister-in-law who was decrying her going-nowhere career in global finance as due to both sex and race being looked down on.

You have to take into account your own personality because that might be holding you back, too. However, your own assessment is also the most important thing.

Keith Payne
Keith Payne
3 years ago

I have loved reading both your recent articles, do write more.

Jeffrey Shaw
Jeffrey Shaw
4 years ago

Give me a break.

Sean L
Sean L
4 years ago

One group alone are slandered with impunity and / or denounced for daring to identify *as* a group, which in their case officially constitutes ‘hate’.

Martin Adams
Martin Adams
4 years ago

Mr Bloodworth’s article is a strongly structured piece of argument, raising many issues that troubled me greatly during the period of which he writes, and remain troubling. I well remember watching, in the autumn of 1995, that superlative specimen of television documentary-making, The Death of Yugoslavia. And as I watched it, reports of the events in Srebrenica were a disturbing background to a tale that was still unfolding, with a remorselessness that implied inevitability.

But was it inevitable? I have never believed that it was.

Mr Bloodworthy mentions that Mrs Thatcher had wished to intervene; but he does not mention that she declared that preference as early as 1991, four years before the appalling events in Srebrenica and just one year after she was ousted as Prime Minister.

In an interview on Croatian TV in November of 1991, Mrs Thatcher declared that the West should recognise the independence of Slovenia and Croatia, so that those nations could be supplied with arms to defend themselves. Rightly or wrongly she saw the conflict in terms that were not just concerned with civil war ” it was a war between aspiring independent nations and a single dominant ideology and nation (Communism and Serbia).

That latter combination was rapidly transformed by the opportunistic rise of Serbian nationalism and the resurrection of the dream of Greater Serbia. But that, it has always seemed to me, has never changed the fundamental point that Mrs Thatcher was making ” that intervention of the kind that she envisaged, by the forces of NATO, was in Britain’s and Europe’s interests for all kinds of reasons; and some of those were moral.

Back in 1991 there was some discussion of her views in various newspapers and journals. The shadows of World War II and its terrible alliances hung heavily; and I clearly remember that one such discussion concluded that military intervention (be it via arms sales or more directly) would never happen unless the three “warrior nations” of Europe ” Britain, France and Germany ” were in agreement. The conclusion was that this would never happen, partly because France and Germany just wouldn’t, and partly because Mrs Thatcher had been replaced by politicians who, unlike her, were pusillanimous and vacillating. Mr Bloodworthy seems to agree on the latter verdict.

I am not interested in attempting to apportion blame for a shameful sequence of political decisions made by this country. But I am interested in trying to understand where the boundaries of this country’s responsibilities have been, and where they are now.

Mr Bloodworthy touches on something that troubled me at the time and troubles me still. Was “indifference to the plight of Bosnia’s Muslims” fuelled by the fact that they were Muslim? I have always suspected so. And he ably summarises the appalling behaviour of leftist pundits in this country and elsewhere.

In both cases ” the dismal pronouncements of the pundits, and the failure to oppose the murderous forces of of Serbian nationalism (not uniquely guilty) ” this country’s failure lies partly in the same weaknesses that led to 1930s appeasement. And those weaknesses lie partly in a reluctance to recognise that human nature is capable of infinite wickedness. We don’t like to recognise that capability in others, especially in those we know, because if we think otherwise, if we think generously, we think better of ourselves.

Adrian Smith
Adrian Smith
4 years ago

The 90’s was a decade of a number of genocides and attempted genocides, not just in the former eastern bloc eg Rwanda. It was also a decade of righteous yet rather inept interventions by US led coalitions to stop some of them. Which then led to the ever larger and ever more inept interventions of the new millennium, until the coalitions began to run out of peace keeping troops bogged down for years due to the vacuums created by the interventions being filled with worse than had been there before. This led to a bit of a pause and a scaling back, until it started all over again just as ineptly as before.

Maybe a new bipolar cold war between US and its allies and China and its allies is what the world really needs to restore some sort of order.

roslynross3
roslynross3
4 years ago

Israel is a nation, like many, founded on the dispossession and colonisation of others. What makes Israel worse, is that unlike the others it has not given free, full and equal rights to the indigenous people of the land it has colonised. The Europeans who colonised Palestine did so intending to remain forever dominant, an undemocratic theocracy in essence.

Israel’s discrimination toward non-Jews, and even non-Jews who are Israeli citizens have second-class rights, makes it an apartheid State.

Whatever the rights and wrongs of BLM, Israel must and should be called to account. Around 6 million Palestinians are denied justice, freedom and human and civil rights simply because they are not Jews. Not only does such discrimination run counter to a modern, civilized world, it runs counter to Judaic teachings. Well, the best of them anyway.

I have no time for BLM but I and many others have a lot of time for justice, human rights and rule of law, all of which Israel betrays.

john smith
john smith
4 years ago
Reply to  roslynross3

The majority of Israeli Jews descend from those ethnically cleansed by Muslim countries like Iran, Iraq and Morocco. A minority are of European origin. Israel is 0.02% of the land in the middle east and in fact Jews owned 5 times as much land in the middle east in 1945 as they do today, not much of a coloniser. Most other countries in the middle east have Islam as the state religion, and heavily oppress non-Muslims, but you seem to not mind that. As long as they are the majority they can tyrannise minorities to their heart’s content! Israel is unique in being a more secular state, absolutely not a theocracy. You have likely been brainwashed by the antisemitic anti-israel propaganda rife in the university system. Israel has had not a single religious prime minister, how many states can say that? Muslims in Israel have more civil and political liberties than any other middle eastern country provides.

60% of Palestinians support executing someone who leaves the Islamic faith. The overwhelming majority consider those who have orchestrated terrorist attacks against Jewish civilians to be heroes. Israel is a liberal secular democracy founded by atheists. 78% of Israeli Jews support gay marriage, higher than most European countries. Israel jails soldiers for killing terrorists that were already incapacitated, the Palestinians give parades to terrorists. Forcing Israel to accept in 6 million of the most far right people on Earth so that they can perform a second holocaust does not strike me as in line with the intent of human rights. This isnt hyperbole. Advocating a 1 state solution is calling for a second holocaust in practice.

Israel has offered a 2 state solution repeatedly, in which the Palestinian population could have sovereignty and create their own laws, but they have rejected it every time. The majority of those willing to accept it, say it’s just a step until all of Israel can be destroyed. Israel therefore is not responsible for the fact the Palestinians lack civil rights. In Gaza where the Palestinians have full control, women who have a child outside wedlock get imprisoned for 7 years. That’s the kind of “justice, human rights and rule of law” you are effectively arguing for while pretending not to be.

Why does Israel owe the Palestinians citizenship but Jordan or Egypt which occupied the territories for 19 years dont? The Palestinians never attempted to create their own nation in those 19 years, even though Israel would have happily made peace with it if they had.

Israel is not a coloniser. It’s a disputed territory with no official border (the 67 lines are at Arab insistence, a ceasefire line and not a national boundary), which was partitioned between the 2 indigenous populations. Jews were 30% of the population before independence. Even in the 1860s Jews were the majority population of Jerusalem. Most of the Palestinians have recent ancestors from other middle eastern countries. Before Israel was created they considered themselves Arabs, not Palestinians. Palestinian was a term used almost exclusively for the Jewish population. Given how under Islamic control non-Muslims are heavily oppressed, it is right that Jews retain control of all of Jerusalem so that all religious minorities are protected. Even the majority of Muslims in Jerusalem prefer to be Israeli than Palestinian.

In 1949 Jordan ethnically cleansed tens of thousands of Jews from the West Bank, and destroyed over 50 synagogues in East Jerusalem alone. They turned Jewish cemeteries into latrines. Compare that to Israel where the number of mosques has grown over 500% in the past 30 years, and Israel forcibly prevents Jews from praying at their own holiest site in order to appease the Muslim population that considers that a war crime. As Abbas says: “[Jews] have no right to desecrate them [holy sites] with their filthy feet…Each drop of blood that was spilled in Jerusalem is pure blood as long as it’s for the sake of Allah. Every shahid (martyr) will be in heaven and every wounded person will be rewarded, by Allah’s will.” That’s whose side you are on, and he’s widely called a “moderate”, even though he financed the Munich olympics massacre. Islam has been the biggest coloniser and enslaver in history, but it’s ok with you as they now have a large population? Is it undemocratic that Ireland doesnt give everyone in the UK the right to vote in Irish elections?

Jim Jones
Jim Jones
3 years ago
Reply to  john smith

Liar

Robert G
Robert G
4 years ago
Reply to  roslynross3

Calling Israel an apartheid state suggests that you know little about either South Africa or Israel. The comparison is absurd. Arab citizens of Israel enjoy equal rights to Jewish citizens. Arab Israelis can and do vote, hold government positions, and sit on the Knesset. They can serve in the IDF, though unlike their Jewish compatriots their service is not compulsory.

Israel is a tiny democratic and liberal island in a large sea of authoritarian and repressive Arab nations. One of the reasons detractors are often seen as antisemitic is the focused and perennial criticism on Israel, which is the most open and democratic society in the middle east. Meanwhile, individuals like yourself seem to have no problem with the human rights abuses or blatant antisemitism of Israel’s Arab neighbors. Blame the Jews is an antisemitic trope as old as human civilization. So is it antisemitism, ignorance, or a charming blend of both?

ednajanjacobs
ednajanjacobs
4 years ago

One of the actions of the Israeli government, aka Zionist, that has disturbed me is the fact that we didn’t learn anything from the Holocaust in our treatment of the “other”. Had we understood that it was our obligation to take Tikun Olam seriously perhaps there would be more understanding generated. As for the myth that the Jews are somehow creating conditions for world domination…..well that’s just silly. There are 14 million Jews that live on this planet and our community is largely dispersed. 2% of the U.S. population is Jewish. I know the U.S. Jewish experience is very different from the British and European Jewish population and I catch my breath everytime someone throws a boulder into the anti-semitic pond that is part and parcel of European history. Racism is the original sin and anti-racism is something that WE all need to work together on because it is all connected and there is no one without this sin, so none of us should cast a stone toward another.

Marcus Millgate
Marcus Millgate
4 years ago

Tony Benn would be correct according to this version of events

https://www.youtube.com/wat

Ann Ceely
Ann Ceely
3 years ago

As the article ends with trade – now that we are out of the EU, we shoppers can buy processed food from Africa which the EU add import taxes on! That could jump-start their local processing industry.
Thx for such a thoughtful item.

glentucker
glentucker
3 years ago

I felt the core argument was excellent as I understand it was based on the worship of materialism as a core problem. Yet this is a problem for every race and so whether black or white or green or yellow, if we pick a side based on colour we miss the excellent point made by the author.
Our current economic system has had many benefits, but it clearly has failed based as it is on exploitation of resources, this is the real explotation and much more difficult to solve because all races currently accept this system as valid including the author as he seems to say that if African nations become more prosperous this is part of the solution.
I would much more spend time on challenging the materialistic nature of our society than on racism which will always be devisive. But a great artical that should be further used as a point of departure for even more unconscious mores in our societies globally.

Hussein Qasem
Hussein Qasem
3 years ago

this article is so ridiculous that it makes no sense …. when you mentioned Arab Jews who were “expelled” (as much as you are racist) you forgot to mention that more than 700,000 Palestinians were expelled from apartheid Israel .. but obviously you didn’t mention it because you are a Zionist (racists), Zionism cannot be but antsemitism because it is a political ideology and not a race or religion … everyone has the right to criticize an idology based on colonialism and ethnic cleansing. .Zionism is a form of racism and must be fought. Zionism is the Palestinian oppressor.. I applaud BLM .. Zionism is racism.

Last edited 3 years ago by Hussein Qasem
Jeffrey Shaw
Jeffrey Shaw
4 years ago

Susan Rosenberg, she sits on the Board of Directors for the fundraising arm of Black Lives Matter. She was convicted for the 1983 bombing of the United States Capitol Building, the U.S. Naval War College and the New York Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association. She was released from prison after serving 16 years of her 58-year prison sentence when Bill Clinton commuted her sentence on his last day in office. I don’t fault BLM for placing Jewish people in positions where the money can be raised and managed, but if this author’s contentions that BLM is somehow anti-Jewish or anti-Zionist, then what is published above is essentially a disinformation essay designed to create the misdirection and the dysfunctional formulation of public opinion.

Dan Poynton
Dan Poynton
4 years ago

I think BLM is largely phoney and has little to do with a legitimate fight against racism, but in this case I have to agree with them. Time and time again people are “outed” as anti-semites merely for criticising or even just questioning the state of Israel’s actions and policies. It’s as cynical and gas-lighting as BLM’s attack on the universal evil of “whiteness”.

Bits Nibbles
Bits Nibbles
4 years ago

There is *nothing* anti-semitic about the Mear One mural, or any of his art. If you’re seeing this theme in his artwork, it says more about you than him and what he’s preaching through his visual work.
To answer Adrian Smith below…universally speaking, *no* lives matter. The more humans accept this mantra, the better off we’ll all be.

Dennis Boylon
Dennis Boylon
4 years ago

Israel is a deeply racist settler colony and apartheid state. Probably the last one of its kind on Earth. The first class citizens are white Ashkenazi jews from Southern Europe with questionable lineage to middle east. The second class darker skinned jews actually share more DNA with the bottom class Palestinians. Which of course makes sense as they have all lived together in those lands for thousands of years. There is some historical evidence that British Intelligence funded and helped build up the Zionism movement to act as flash point and help divide the Islamic world to make it easier for the UK and USA to control the region. Looking back over the last decades that is what seems to have played out.

Robert G
Robert G
4 years ago
Reply to  Dennis Boylon

You’re literally just making shit up. Nothing like an article on antisemitism to bring out the anti semites. I’m disappointed that this nonsense wasn’t filtered out by the moderators.

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
4 years ago
Reply to  Dennis Boylon

You should acquaint yourself with the Balfour Declaration and what was going on, particularly financially in 1916. It is axiomatic to understanding the subsequent history of the Middle East.

“Fortune favours the brave”, as Pliny the Elder put it.

Sidney Eschenbach
Sidney Eschenbach
4 years ago

This is pathetic, a pearl-clutchers guide to faux outrage that the left has the temerity to demand that the right make sense for a change. Cancel culture? That would be Brutus and Julius, or Putin and Litvinenko (among many others), not Yglesias’ and Box staffers. Really.

Between the departure of WFBuckley and the arrival of The Bulwark, the right has simply stopped making sense. From the completely hypocritical Newt Gingrich to the duplicitous Grover Norquist, from Rushbo to Laffer and his curves, the peddling of lies, rumors and half-truths in the service of the pursuit of political power over the past 40 years leaves any concept of an honest discussion of different opinions and viewpoints impossible.

Your breast beating article about “cancel culture” sounds like the wails from the Obama-fearing militias spinning tales of black helicopters and concentration camps… and just as absurd. I’ve seen absolutely no sign that the “illiberal left” is any more real than the black helicopters… but it does make a great storyline, doesn’t it.

Obama begged Republicans for their input regarding serious policy issues from health care to bank reform to tax policies… and got nothing. Nothing, that is, other than more of the same disproven theories that cutting taxes on the rich will create prosperity for all, etc.

Serious commentary, disagreement, engagement… all very welcome. Duplicity in the service of political goals… not so much.