Are Jews a “privileged” class?

A few months ago Louise Mensch was attacked at ‘Comment is Free’ for dismissing the idea of “privilege checking”.  Mensch had argued the following:

“Check your privilege”, for example, is a profoundly stupid trope that states that only those with personal experience of something should comment, or that if a person is making an argument, they should immediately give way if their view is contradicted by somebody with a different life story.

Laurie Penny is an absolutely prime example; she does it all the time. The other day on Twitter she told people not to rise to what she felt was a race-baiting article by Rod Liddle in the Spectator. She was quite right. Everybody with a blog knows what “don’t feed the trolls” means. However, she was angrily contradicted by the black comedian @AvaVidal who told her that people of colour were striking back and they should rise to it. Instead of defending her position, Penny caved, recanted, and commented mournfully that “having your privilege checked” was painful.

Here are the relevant passages from an essay by Laurie Penny, contributing editor at The New Statesman. 

Louise Mensch is confused. The erstwhile MP and professional gadfly has published a blogpost decrying “privilege checking”, and longing to return to a species of “reality-based” feminism where everyone would stop bothering her about class, race and money.

Actually, “privilege” isn’t at all hard to understand. It just means any structural social advantage that you have by virtue of birth, or position – such as being white, being wealthy, or being a man. “Check your privilege” means “consider how your privilege affects what you have just said or done.” That’s it.

Privilege is not the same as power. Nor is it a game whereby only the least privileged people will henceforth be allowed an opinion – the last time I checked, the political conversation was still dominated by rich white men and their wives. These are the people who go into spasms of outrage at the very notion that a black person, or a woman, or a working-class person might have as much right to an opinion as they do on matters that affect them.

Whilst the idea of ‘privilege’ is intellectually suspect for a host of reasons (many of which Mensch explored in her blog post), it’s quite interesting that Jews, of all people, are often considered among “the privileged” within this paradigm.  Not only has the post-Holocaust taboo against antisemitism been eroded, but Jews, who represent a fraction of 1% of the world’s population, are – in a manner evoking classic tropes about Jewish control - typically portrayed, by virtue of their relative success, as an elite, powerful, and privileged class. 

Whilst reasonable people can agree or disagree with attempts to explain disparities in economic, educational and social outcomes in terms of one’s ‘privilege’, it seems difficult to avoid including Jews among those who are “historically disadvantaged” when honestly exploring its political implications.

So, for those who fancy the specious argument that you can quantify privilege in terms of one’s race, ethnicity, gender, etc., here’s some food for thought – a list of the advantages (privileges) of waking up in the morning as a non-Jew – the daily effects of non-Jewish privilege.

1. You likely don’t have your people’s right to national self-determination questioned or characterized as racist.

2.  You are not characterized as racist for the alleged sin of caring more about your own people’s safety and welfare than that of other groups.

3.  You are not accused as a group – by virtue of by your current alleged “immoral behavior” – of having betrayed the memory of coreligionists who were victims of genocide.

4.  You are not accused of being more loyal to a foreign state than to the interests of your own nation.

5.  You are likely not held personally responsible for the actions of others who share your religion or ethnicity.

6.  You are not likely to be targeted for terrorist attacks by extremists simply because you happen to share the same religion as the majority population in one foreign state.  

7.  You likely don’t have to avoid expressing your religious identity when visiting Middle Eastern or even European countries for fear of violence.

8.  You are likely never accused of being part of an international conspiracy to control the world.

9.  You are not accused of exercising disproportionate control over the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.

10. Your success and personal achievements – and other fruits of your hard work – aren’t turned upside down and characterized as evidence of your ‘privilege.

To be clear, none of this is meant to suggest that we subscribe to the facile theory that groups should be divided between the ‘privileged’ and the non-privileged.  However, for those who do give this paradigm credence, it does seem to represent an egregious moral double standard to impute ‘privilege’ to such a historically persecuted, disenfranchised and marginalized minority as Jews.   

Jonathan Freedland’s blindspot on antisemitism

Though we’re often in disagreement with his politics on Israel, Jonathan Freedland is one of the few Guardian journalists who takes the issue of antisemitism seriously, and his latest essay at ‘Comment is Free’, ‘Antisemitism does not always come with a Hitler salute does something quite extraordinary. Freedland not only does a competent job discussing the various manifestations of anti-Jewish bigotry but also, at least indirectly, calls out two fellow Guardian contributors for their antisemitic discourse.

freedland

First, Freedland frames the essay:

The Daily Mail’s sustained assault on the late Ralph Miliband, the Marxist scholar it branded “The Man Who Hated Britain”. Some detect a whiff of anti-Jewish prejudice, some swear there is no such thing. When pressed on the point by the BBC, Ed Miliband himself declined to add antisemitism to his list of charges against the paper.

All of which, I imagine, must make it hard for the open-minded outsider, the non-Jew keen to oppose all forms of racism. They know they’re against antisemitism, but how exactly to spot it? When is the line crossed? Where, in fact, is the line? In the spirit of public service, let me attempt an answer.

He then notes the persistence of antisemitism in the Middle East and even links to a report by Tom Gross on antisemitic cartoons in the Arab world.

[Antisemitism] is not a phenomenon safely buried in the past. Just because hatred of Jews reached a murderous climax in the 1940s does not mean it ended with the war in 1945. It is alive and well even in 2013. Whether it’s on Twitter or in the cartoons that routinely appear in much of today’s Middle Eastern press, crude slurs and hideous caricatures of Jews – hook-nosed and money-grabbing – endure.

Later in the essay, Freedland makes reference to two particularly egregious examples of antisemitism at the Guardian:

In the antisemitic imagination, Jews are constantly working for some other, hidden goal. In this, antisemitism stands apart from other racisms, which tend to view the hated as straightforwardly inferior. Antisemitism is instead a conspiracy theory of power, believing that the Jews – always operating as a collective – are bent on some grand plan of world domination. Which is why images of Jews as puppet masters, or of having the world in their financial grips”, as Baroness Jenny Tonge so memorably put it, always hit a nerve.

The “puppet masters” reference links to a piece by Guardian readers’ editor Chris Elliott (Accusations of antisemitism against a political cartoon) criticizing an ugly cartoon by Steve Bell last November which depicted the Israeli prime minister as a puppet master controlling Tony Blair and William Hague.

Freedland continues:

And always on hand for the antisemite is some reference to Jews’ religious practice, real or imagined. For centuries, those who hate Jews would throw the phrase “chosen people” back in their faces, falsely interpreting it as a mandate for Jewish supremacism. 

His “chosen people” reference links to another essay by the Guardian’s readers’ editor (On averting accusations of antisemitism) which called out the shameful antisemitic use of the term “chosen people” by Deborah Orr. 

Freedland continues, rightfully pointing to the persistent tropes which evoke the classic antisemitic narrative of ‘dual loyalty’: 

Instead, there are familiar tunes, some centuries old, which are played again and again. An especially hoary trope is the notion of divided allegiances or plain disloyalty, as if, whatever their outward pretence, Jews really serve another master besides their country. Under Stalin, Jews, especially Jewish intellectuals, were condemned as “rootless cosmopolitans” (another euphemism) lacking in sufficient patriotism. The Mail’s insistence that Miliband Sr was not only disloyal but actively hated his country fits comfortably in that tradition.

Freedland didn’t provide a link or cite any concrete examples of commentators employing such racist canards, so we thought it would be helpful to point to a colleague of Freedland’s at the Guardian who has engaged in such tropes on numerous occasions. His name is Glenn Greenwald. 

Here are a few quotes from Greenwald imputing such disloyalty:

  • Large and extremely influential Jewish donor groups are the ones agitating for a US war against Iran, and that is the case because those groups are devoted to promoting Israel’s interests.” - Feb. 3, 2007
  • “Those [American Jews] who favor the attack on Gaza are certainly guilty…of such overwhelming emotional and cultural attachment to Israel and Israelis that they long ago ceased viewing this conflict with any remnant of objectivity.” - Jan. 4, 2009
  • “The point is that the power the [Israel lobby] exercises [is] harmful in the extreme. They use it to squelch debate, destroy the careers and reputations of those who deviate from their orthodoxies, and compel both political parties to maintain strict adherence to an agenda that is held by a minority of Americans; that is principally concerned with the interests of a foreign country.” – March 11, 2009 Salon
  • “[Charles] Freeman is being dragged through the mud by the standard cast of accusatory Israel-centric neocons (Marty Peretz, Jon Chait, Jeffrey Goldberg, Commentary, The Weekly Standard’s Michael Goldfarb, etc. etc., etc.).” –March 9, 2009 
  • “Meanwhile, one of the many Israel-Firsters in the U.S. Congress — Rep. Anthony Weiner, last seen lambasting President Obama for daring to publicly mention a difference between the U.S. and Israel — today not only defended Israel’s attack. – June 1, 2010

We of course don’t know if Freedland has had the pleasure of meeting his new colleague but – insofar as he truly takes antisemitism seriously – we humbly suggest that he at least familiarize himself with Greenwald’s record of anti-imperialist inspired Judeophobia which we continue to document at this blog. 

Guardian Jerusalem Syndrome: Giles Fraser fears Judaisation of Temple Mount

Jerusalem Syndrome: a group of mental phenomena involving the presence of either religiously themed obsessive ideas, delusions or other psychosis-like experiences that are triggered by a visit to the city of Jerusalem. 

The Palestinian Authority on Wednesday continued in its long campaign of incitement concerning the Temple Mount, condemning Jews who tour the holy site by suggesting that their visits represent a broader Israeli scheme to “Judaise” the site with the ultimate goal of rebuilding a Jewish Temple.

The PA-controlled media has specifically claimed that “hordes of settlers and Jewish extremists plan to storm and desecrate the Aksa Mosque” – part of a broader campaign of incitement by Islamist extremists in Jerusalem which has triggered several Palestinian riots at the Temple Mount over the past few months.

wafa

Wafa, official Palestinian News Agency, Sept. 4, 2013

The threat of riots last month around Ramadan, for instance, prompted Israeli police to close off the Temple Mount to non-Muslim visitors.

Lending polemical support to such an often repeated lie that Israel – which allows freedom of worship for all faiths at holy sites in Jerusalem – represents a threat to the Temple Mount (the holiest site in Judaism), is the Guardian’s Giles Fraser, whose latest piece at ‘Comment is Free’ is titled ‘An Israeli claim to Temple Mount Would Trigger Unimaginable Violence.’

fraser

Fraser’s essay includes the following:

Jewish access to Temple Mount has been strictly forbidden (by religious, not secular, law) for centuries – though some of the more secular Israeli nationalists increasingly want access simply to insist upon their jurisdiction over that part of Jerusalem. It was Ariel Sharon’s deliberately provocative visit to the Temple Mount on 28 September 2000 that sparked the second intifada. 

First, as we’ve demonstrated on several occasions, Fraser’s claim that Ariel Sharon sparked the second intifada is a complete lie, as evidence abounds that the violence was coordinated at the highest levels of the Palestinian government. As we noted, for instance, Yasser’s widow, Suha, admitted that her husband explicitly told her, in early 2000, that he was going “to launch an intifada.”

suha

See video, here.

Moreover, contrary to Fraser’s suggestion in the passage, Jews already have access to the Temple Mount. Though Jews who visit are forbidden from praying there, the site has regular visiting hours, and is open to all faiths.  

Fraser continues:

The orthodox position has long been that the Temple can only be rebuilt and sacrifices resumed when the Jewish messiah returns. There have been a few dissenting voices to this consensus – most notably, Maimonides – but since the foundation of the state of Israel, the idea of Jews returning to Temple Mount prior to the arrival of the messiah has been the obsession of a tiny minority. And mostly, like Sharon, driven by secular political rather that theological concerns. But as Israel continues its shift to the right, these dangerous voices are now entering the political mainstream.

Whilst Fraser’s broad suggestion that Israel has been shifting to the right – a favorite narrative of the Guardian which was undermined by the results of the last election – is erroneous, his more central claim that support for rebuilding the Temple has reached the mainstream is absurd.  

Though some on the extreme right have supported the right of Jews to merely pray at the Temple Mount, the Jewish legal (halakhic) ban on visiting the site is supported by most orthodox Jewish leaders.  Additionally, the number of religious Jews who even visit the Temple Mount each year is tiny.  Further, only those on the extreme fringes of Israeli society seriously discuss rebuilding the Temple, a fact that Fraser himself alludes to in his subsequent passage:

It would be hard to overstate how dangerous an idea this is. The vast majority of orthodox rabbis have reiterated their opposition to it.

It would be dangerous if there was any chance that it was seriously being contemplated by Israeli political leaders, but that is clearly not the case. 

Finally, Fraser wouldn’t be a Guardian Left journalist if he didn’t include a gratuitous pejorative reference to “settlers”, so his essay includes this throw away line near the end:

But the settler mentality is now increasingly focusing on what is politically the most explosive site on the planet. If they succeed, a billion Muslims worldwide would go ballistic. 

It’s of course unclear what the ideological connection is between 350,000 Jews, both religious and secular, who live (for varying reasons) across the green line, and a tiny politically insignificant minority of Israelis who call for the Temple to be rebuilt.

Moreover, it’s remarkable how Fraser could write an essay about religious tensions at the Temple Mount without even mentioning the long history of ideological incitement by their political and religious leaders which continues to represent the root cause of such “tensions”.  Fraser, who has filed his last two reports while visiting the holy land, has joined the chorus of those on the far left who shamefully amplify the incitement, fear mongering and Jerusalem delusions of Palestinian extremists. 

Guardian frames Egypt ‘Spy Stork’ row as sign of increased xenophobia under military regime

In terms of entertainment value it’s hard to beat recent reports that Egyptian police placed a stork under arrest late Friday after a mysterious device was found attached to its feathers, fueling accusations that it might have been used for Zionist espionage.  Evidently, the stork was taken to a police station, and ‘interrogated’, but soon cleared of wrongdoing after veterinarians realized that the bird was bearing nothing but a wildlife tracker installed by French scientists.

stork

A migrating stork was held in an Egyptian police station after a man suspected it of being a spy. Photo, AP

However, the story doesn’t end there, at least not if you’re a blog which monitors the Guardian.  Almost as enjoyable as the story itself was the account of the episode by the Guardian Cairo correspondent, Patrick Kingsley.  

Though his story, Eyes on storks? Egyptian fishermen thought bird was a foreign spy, Sept. 2, was, in fairness, mostly light-hearted and cheeky, being the Guardianista he is, he naturally somehow failed to note reports that some thought the bird was spying for Israel, while imputing the following political significance:

But the stork’s treatment comes amid a wider rise in xenophobia in Egypt this summer. Since the army forced out ex-president Mohamed Morsi in a widely backed move on 3 July, the country has been consumed in a wave of pro-military nationalism.

One side-effect has been the blaming of the country’s ills on foreigners – from American diplomats, to Syrian refugees and western journalists.

Whilst blaming the stork’s apprehension on the current mood of jingoism – in contrast, presumably, to the ‘enlightened internationalism‘ under the Muslim Brotherhood – is itself quite comical, those of us who’ve ‘covered’ previous instances of spy animals can refute the reporter’s thesis by noting other examples of Egyptian ‘xenophobia’.

A couple of years ago there were reports that some Egyptians were blaming Israel for a shark attack that killed a German tourist in the Red Sea. Such suspicions were best articulated by the South Sinai Governor, Mohamed Abdel Fadil Shousha, who said the following:

What is being said about the Mossad throwing the deadly shark in the sea to hit tourism in Egypt is not out of the question, but it needs time to confirm”.

This all prompted Chas Newkey-Burden to illustrate the anti-Zionist paranoia the following way at his blog, (using a graphic by Jonathan Sacerdoti):

shark1

Just when you thought it was safe to go in the water

Oh, and finally, contrary to the Guardian reporter’s theory on a military regime-inspired fear of migratory foreigners, the “Zionist shark attack” took place in 2010, before the military regime and before Morsi, undermining the suggestion that the stork arrest can be tied to societal fears stoked by the current ‘wave’ of militant nationalism.

(You can get up to speed on the complete list of Zionist Spy Animals here.)

The lies of George Galloway

When he’s not engaging in antisemitism, licking the boots of fascist dictators, or contributing to ‘Comment is Free’, George Galloway provides commentary on world events for PressTV Global News.

Recently on the Iranian network, he offered a classic conspiracy theory, alleging that Israel supplied the Syrians with chemical weapons used to murder several hundred civilians last week – a charge which found its way onto the floor of the House of Commons.

Here are a few passages from an entry at 5:18 PM at the Guardian‘s Live Blog of the House of Commons debate on Syria intervention yesterday:

Matthew Offord, a Conservative, asks Galloway if it is true that he said on Iranian TV that the Israelis supplied the Syrians with chemical weapons.

Galloway says Offord should not believe what he gets told in green ink letters from constituents. But the rebels in Syria have been caught with sarin gas, he says. It is relatively easy to produce.

Interestingly, the Guardian didn’t include the rest of what Galloway said, where he flatly denied making such accusations.

Now, here’s a video posted by Trending Central of the House of Commons debate, and Galloway’s comments on PressTV which prompted Offord’s query:

Galloway blatantly lied.

Trending Central suggests the following to hold the MP from Bradford West accountable:

Resolved: Antisemitism is the main obstacle to Israeli-Palestinian peace

Harriet Sherwood’s July 18th Guardian storyon efforts by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, reports on a meeting convened last night by Mahmoud Abbas with other Palestinian political leaders to decide whether to return to the negotiating table.  

Whilst a story by the Guardian/Reuters published this morning reported that Abbas and his colleagues ultimately decided to simply defer making any decision at all on whether to enter talks, both Sherwood’s report and the Reuters story characteristically avoided any mention of the the single largest issue preventing peace between Israel and its neighbors: An Arab culture which consistently promotes the demonization and dehumanization of Jews – antisemitic incitement promoted by Arab governments which permeates their educational system, religious life, media, and popular culture.

You simply can’t have an honest discussion about the Arab-Israeli conflict without acknowledging the toxicity of the Arab world’s blind hatred towards Jews – racism which continues to render any hope for genuine peace and coexistence (and the Palestinian acceptance of a Jewish state within any borders) merely an illusion.

Whilst the Guardian all but completely ignores the role Palestinian Jew-hatred plays in perpetuating the conflict, the Guardian (as my colleague Gilead Ini notes in his superb analysis of the broader problem) is by no means alone.  With few exceptions, mainstream media outlets reporting on the political process of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict routinely fail to inform their readers of the broader moral and cultural factors which represent the main impediments to peace in the Middle East.  

Ini writes the following:

Assume, for a moment, that the Jews are demons.

Imagine having been taught that they purposefully infect your countrymen with AIDS, and that such evil deeds have been a consistent part of Jewish history for thousands of years, ever since they killed their own prophets and tried to kill yours. Believe that their ultimate goal is to corrupt the world and hoard its money and power. Feel certain that they are so diabolical that even rocks and trees — the earth itself — wants them dead.

Could you possibly see them as good neighbors — good people like your own family and friends? Would you support negotiations with them, let alone substantive concessions?

A resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict will require trust. But you can’t trust the devil. It will require compromise. But you don’t compromise with evil. It will require an understanding by each side of the other’s legitimate interests and concerns. But if Jews — not just Israelis, not just one or another political party, but the Jews — are irremediably concerned with spreading disease, sowing corruption and accumulating money, it would be reasonable to conclude that they should be met with outright rejection, not concessions.

And what if, despite enormous headwinds driven by public revulsion for these demonized Jews, your leaders nonetheless signed a peace deal with them? Could it take root in such unfertile soil?

Can a society that accepts the most outlandish conspiracy theories about Jews, and that has long used Jews as the scapegoat for setbacks and failures, thrive? Can such a society successfully grapple with difficulties that, in reality, have nothing to do with Jews?

Walter Russell Mead argues that “widespread popular anti-Semitism is almost always a leading indicator of economic failure and autocratic rule.” Although anti-Semites might think this is because Jews “use their hidden superpowers to block and frustrate the economic development of peoples brave enough to tell the truth about Jewish machinations,” in fact, Mead says,

“anti-Semitism is usually associated with attitudes of bigotry, dogmatism and hostility to new ideas and different perspectives. Tolerance, openness to different ideas and a willingness to work with people from different religions and backgrounds are essential qualities for long-term successful and democratic development in a capitalist world, and people who hate and fear Jews usually lack them.”

In other words, for the two sides to coexist peacefully, sustainable and successfully, their worst passions must be subdued. As Martin Luther King Jr. says toward the end of the attached video (link below), hate makes you do irrational things. “You can’t see straight when you hate,” he explains.

But the video also reveals that, in all too many mosques, schools and television programs across the Arab and Muslim world, the public is indoctrinated with the most vile anti-Jewish bigotry. Hatred is idealized to a degree that the average American, and the average Israeli, cannot comprehend or imagine.

Journalists have a particular responsibility to inform global audiences about this scourge — about the presence and prominence of anti-Semitism and its role as “leading indicator” of societal dysfunction and spoiler of peace hopes. But with few exceptions there has been little coverage in the mainstream media of the phenomenon and its importance. Instead, an ossified storyline focuses on other supposed obstacles to peace in the Middle East that omits this central force.

CAMERA has produced an excellent short video to illustrate Ini’s post, which you can view here.

Guardian’s David Hearst participates in discussion on the power of the Israel lobby

Cross posted by Mark Gardner at the blog of the CST.

Swapping “Zionist” or “pro-Israeli” for “Jewish” is not opposing antisemitism. It is, at best, a lazy linguistic complacency that camouflages antisemitic ways of thinking: making antisemitism harder to expose and fight. An unusually explicit example of this can be clearly seen in the footage of a meeting at London journalist haunt, the Frontline Club. View it here (but read the below first).

The meeting, on 12 June 2013, used a book by British Islamist, Ibrahim Hewitt, as the basis for discussion about the media’s approach to the Israel-Palestine conflict. The discussion, between Hewitt, ex-BBC Middle East correspondent Tim Llewellyn, and Guardian foreign leader writer David Hearst, was chaired by Mark McDonald, a founder of Labour Friends of Palestine & the Middle East.

Under the title, Anti-Zionism: the Frontline, CST Blog had already warned what might happen at this meeting. We related some of the overblown anti-Zionist conspiracy theory and imagery that Hewitt’s group, MEMO, had previously published. We noted that Llewellyn might be worse than Hewitt. We recalled Hearst’s silence in the Guardian after a judge had found against Sheikh Ra’ed Salah’s denials of having made a blood libel speech. (The judge still granted Salah his appeal.) We asked, without optimism, if Hearst or McDonald might intervene if either of their fellow Frontline speakers strayed into territory occupied by antisemitism.

The footage shows that Hewitt did not repeat the wilder material from MEMO, and that Llewellyn was indeed worse than him. Hearst explained things calmly and without resort to conspiracy theory, but does not seem to have directly rebutted either Hewitt or, especially, Llewellyn. If anything, Hearst surely normalised his fellow speakers to the mainly young audience – rather than undermined them.

The footage also shows that there was only one intervention against a speaker who took things too far. This was against Llewellyn, when Hewitt pulled him up for saying“the Jewish Lobby”: whereupon the meeting chair, Mark McDonald, said that it should be “the Zionist Lobby” or “pro-Israel Lobby” instead.

Any serious objection to antisemitism must go far deeper than swapping “Zionist” for“Jewish”. Otherwise, it simply becomes an exercise in how to swap an antisemitic conspiracy theory for an ‘anti-Zionist’ one. The anti-Zionist left claims, furiously, to oppose antisemitism, but swapping “Zionist” for “Jew” is advising upon camouflage, not anti-racism.

The salient moment occurs approximately 30 minutes and 45 seconds (30:45) into the footage, when Tim Llewellyn asks David Hearst to explain why he says that newspaper editors “wilt under pressure”. Llewellyn:

Is it because. I can see it in the BBC. They’re frighten’, these people are quite aggressive, right. The Jewish Lobby is not much fun. They come at you from every direction.

Off camera, Hewitt says “no”, then, “its the pro-Israel lobby”. It is not exactly clear who says what after this, but it includes McDonald talking over Llewellyn, stating:

I mean that’s a very important thing to say, that it’s not a Jewish lobby. Can I interrupt a second. It’s not a Jewish lobby. It might be a Zionist lobby. It may be a pro-Israel lobby.

But Llewellyn won’t give it up. He retorts:

Yes, but they use Jewish connections to get you.

McDonald’s anti-racism intervention now wilts. He wants consensus, not a discursive analysis on the meaning of “they use Jewish connections to get you”. So, he lamely replies:

Yes, but it’s not necessarily a Jewish lobby, as in

McDonald’s words trail off. He does not say ‘its not necessarily a Jewish lobby as in the way that antisemites allege Jews run the media and politics, via intimidation, money and power’. Llewellyn gives an inch:

Alright, it’s an Israeli lobby. A friends of Israel lets say. Lets not be too polite about them, because they’re not very polite about us.

Llewellyn continues, asking why “we are afraid of them”:

Why are we afraid of them. That’s what I don’t understand. You know, I mean, we’re all British…I may be Welsh, but I’m British.

Nobody intervenes. Nobody asks Llewellyn to clarify if he is meaning to say that these lobbying, connected Jews are somehow not British. There are no more anti-racist interventions, not even half-hearted ones.

And so the meeting goes on, showing how easily anti-Zionist conspiracy can be normalised when people are willing to sit alongside it and treat it with respect.  In particular, Hearst and McDonald treat Llewellyn’s interventions as if they are entirely normal and legitimate. They are not merely bystanders in this, they facilitate it. The audience takes it all in.

Contemplate the following low points and note that all of them were treated as being entirely normal:

06.20 Ibrahim Hewitt stresses England football manager Roy Hodgson was right to visit Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial, but asks about his not visiting the nearby remains of Palestinian village, Deir Yassin.

08.57 Hewitt says that Abraham Foxman (of the Anti Defamation League) is the only person “guaranteed”  to get their letters published in the New York Times.

11.30 Hewitt says he enjoys reading the obituaries in the Guardian. Llewellyn interrupts, “any day now”.

21.55 Llewellyn asks “a deeper question” about BBC reporting:

why is it like this?…is it a sinister conspiracy…a lazy way of looking at, you know, the fact that the Israeli lobby is very powerful in all three of our main political parties. Is it the BBC being very fearful?

40.44 Hewitt’s curious use of the word “diaspora”: “one of the paradoxes…that the media in Israel is often more lively and robust on this issue than the media in the so-called diaspora in New York and Europe”.

41.11 Llewellyn jokily tells Hewitt, “learn to write in Yiddish”, to get his letters published in Israeli media. Someone (from the audience) says “Hebrew”, Llewellyn counters, “No, Yiddish”.

50.04 A well spoken English woman cites Moses, her ‘them and us’ style is a classic of the genre:

AIPAC, America’s Jewish Israeli lobby, they are sooooo well organised. And we’re too nice. Whether we’re the Palestinians, or the British, we are awfully nice, we, as you say, go make a cup of tea. They don’t make cups of tea…they are desperately tough…Moses said that they were a hard-necked people. They are. And they are so well organised… 

58.40 Llewellyn adds more about what “troubles” him. He objects to Europeans regarding Israelis as being like themselves, whereas Palestinians are not seen that way. He says “the Jewish lobby”, interchangeably with “the Israeli lobby”:

We talk about the Jewish lobby, the Israeli lobby, the friends of Israel. There is this people like us thing…   

1.01.20 Llewellyn brings the lobby’s political power into the BBC equation:

The BBC is pressured because its part of a Governmental system. There’s no question about the friends of Israel are big in each three political parties, right.

1.14.08 Hewitt reveals his theory about the “sleepers” that the Israelis are now allegedly activating in media positions of power around the world:

It’s very telling that…the Israeli Foreign Ministry actually issued a directive to the hasbara people, the propaganda people, around the world, start placing articles…so they were very confident that they had the ability, the people in place to be able to do that…said a lot, if they can just basically give this directive and all these sleepers all of a sudden wake up and start doing things. There are clearly people in positions of influence who are able to do this.

1.32.06 Finally, the last word at the meeting went to Tim Llewellyn:

The editor of the Guardian who said that comments were free and facts were sacred: was the biggest Zionist who ever lived.

(The footage link, again, is here.)

Glenn Greenwald, Matt Hill and Pat Buchanan’s ideological convergence on ‘Jewish control’

CiF Watch engaged in a series of Twitter conversations yesterday – based on our post earlier in the day about ‘Guardian Left’ antisemitism – which, in addition to a few interesting Tweets by Rosanne Barr over her endorsement of Gilad Atzmon, included an exchange with Liberal Conspiracy blogger (and Indy contributor) Matt Hill.

hill

Hill – who we posted about last month when CiF Watch prompted Indy editors to remove his wild and completely false accusation, in an April 16 essay about Israel’s 65th anniversary, that Israel engaged in “forced sterilisation” of Ethiopian women – engaged with us over our Tweets last night challenging him to acknowledge the antisemitism of, among other Guardian contributors who we cited, Glenn Greenwald.

Here is his reply:

The link which Hill opened was a Times of Israel piece I wrote which included several examples of Greenwald advancing antisemitic narratives.

As I noted in my CW post yesterday, being a Guardian Left anti-Semite is partially defined by the belief you are a champion of progressive politics  and yet often use (or at least defend) terms and tropes indistinguishable from classic right wing Judeophobia - such as the argument that Jews are too powerful, use their money to control politics, and are not loyal citizens.

Before we get to Greenwald’s quotes, which, again, Hill claimed were free of antisemitism, here are a few quotes from a right-wing paleoconservative racist by the name of Pat Buchanan.

  • Israel and its Fifth Column in this city [Washington, D.C.] seek to stampede us into war with Iran. Bush should rebuff them, and the American people should tell their congressmen: You vote for 362, we don’t vote for you.”
  • They charge us with anti-Semitism…The truth is, those hurling these charges harbor a ‘passionate attachment’ to a nation not our own that causes them to subordinate the interests of their own country and to act on an assumption that, somehow, what’s good for Israel is good for America.”
  • “Who would benefit from these endless wars in a region that holds nothing vital to America-save oil…Who would benefit from a ‘war of civilizations’ with Islam? Who other than these neoconservatives and Ariel Sharon? Indeed, Sharon was everywhere the echo of his American auxiliary….”
  • “We charge that a cabal of polemicists and public officials seek to ensnare our country in a series of wars that are not in America’s interests. We charge them with colluding with Israel to ignite those wars and destroy the Oslo Accords. We charge them with deliberately damaging U.S. relations with every state in the Arab world that defies Israel or supports the Palestinian people’s right to a homeland of their own. We charge that they have alienated friends and allies all over the Islamic and Western world through their arrogance, hubris, and bellicosity.”“A list of the Middle East regimes that Podhoretz, Bennett, Ledeen, Netanyahu, and the Wall Street Journal regard as targets for destruction includes Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Sudan, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, the Palestinian Authority, and ‘militant Islam.’ “Cui bono? For whose benefit these endless wars in a region that holds nothing vital to America save oil, which the Arabs must sell us to survive? Who would benefit from a war of civilizations between the West and Islam? Answer: one nation, one leader, one party. Israel, Sharon, Likud.” What these neoconservatives seek is to conscript American blood to make the world safe for Israel
  • There are only two groups that are beating the drums for war in The Middle East – the Israeli Defense Ministry and its amen corner in the United States.”
  • Capitol Hill is Israeli occupied territory.”

Now here is Greenwald:

  • “So absolute has the Israel-centric stranglehold on American policy been that the US Government has made it illegal to broadcast Hezbollah television stations.”
  • “Not even our Constitution’s First Amendment has been a match for the endless exploitation of American policy, law and resources [by the Israel lobby] to target and punish Israel’s enemies.”
  • The real goal [of the Israel lobby], as always, was to ensure that there is no debate over America’s indescribably self-destructive, blind support for Israeli actions. [Charles] Freeman’s critics may have scored a short-term victory in that regard, but the more obvious it becomes what is really driving these scandals, the more difficult it will be to maintain this suffocating control over American debates and American policy.”
  • “The point is that the power the [Israel lobby] exercises [is] harmful in the extreme. They use it to squelch debate, destroy the careers and reputations of those who deviate from their orthodoxies, and compel both political parties to maintain strict adherence to an agenda that is held by a minority of Americans; that is principally concerned with the interests of a foreign country; and that results in serious cost and harm to the United States. In doing so, they insure not only that our policies towards Israel remain firmly in place no matter the outcome of our elections, but also that those policies remain beyond the realm of what can be questioned or debated by those who want to have a political future.”
  • “Anyone who has argued that a desire to protect Israeli interests plays too large of a role in our foreign policy has been subjected to some of the most vicious and relentless smears. Ask Juan Cole about that, or John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt. Those tactics have, as intended, prevented a substantive debate on this question, as most people have feared even approaching the topic.”
  • If you don’t…pledge your loyalty to our policies toward Israel and to Israel, what will happen to you is what just happened to Charles Freeman. You’ll be demonized and have your career ended.
  • Large and extremely influential Jewish donor groups are the ones agitating for a US war against Iran, and that is the case because those groups are devoted to promoting Israel’s interests.”
  • “Those [American Jews] who favor the attack on Gaza are certainly guilty…of such overwhelming emotional and cultural attachment to Israel and Israelis that they long ago ceased viewing this conflict with any remnant of objectivity.”
  • “The dominant narrative among neocons and the media is that, deep down in his heart, [Obama] may be insufficiently devoted to Israel to be president of the United States. Has there ever been another country to which American politicians were required to pledge their uncritical, absolute loyalty the way they are, now, with Israel?
  • “[Charles] Freeman is being dragged through the mud by the standard cast of accusatory Israel-centric neocons (Marty Peretz, Jon Chait, Jeffrey Goldberg, Commentary, The Weekly Standard’s Michael Goldfarb, etc. etc., etc.).”

And, finally, (though not included in my ToI essay), here’s a case of Greenwald using the term “Israel-Firster” to characterize a Jewish American politician, a term which ignited a row last year involving MJ Rosenberg and other bloggers associated with the Center for American Progress. 

  • “Meanwhile, one of the many Israel-Firsters in the U.S. Congress — Rep. Anthony Weiner, last seen lambasting President Obama for daring to publicly mention a difference between the U.S. and Israel — today not only defended Israel’s attack

Matt Hill evidently sees nothing morally problematic about such attacks on American Jews. 

As I’ve argued elsewhere, Even before the birth of the modern state of Israel, Jews have stood accused of not possessing sufficient loyalty to the nations where they reside.  Its contemporary manifestation however almost always centers around the notion of dual loyalty – a charge that Jews are more loyal to Israel than their own nation.  Often, such charges of dual loyalty are infused with a narrative imputing enormous power to Jewish communities which typically represent a tiny fraction of the population. 

Such a synthesis of disloyalty and exaggerated power allows the accuser to charge the Jewish community of working to undermine the nation – often alleging that such Jews are dangerous aliens who represent nothing short of a Fifth Column.

It’s remarkable that, while in much of the 20th century such tropes about Jewish power and dual loyalty were associated with the xenophobic and nativist far right, there’s been an ideological evolution such that these toxic ideas have gained popularity among self-styled ‘progressives’ – some of whom believe as a matter of faith that Jews exercise too much power in the US, put “Israel first” over their own country and even control US foreign policy.

This blog devotes a good deal of space to monitoring Glenn Greenwald because he, perhaps more than any other columnist at the site, represents the most egregious example of a popular and putatively liberal commentator who advances Judeophobic narratives seemingly without the least bit of concern about the racist ideological tradition which inspires his prose.

Our efforts to combat antisemitism at the Guardian and ‘Comment is Free’ is premised on the understanding that there is nothing even remotely liberal (yet alone “brave”) about engaging in ad hominem, scurrilous and bigoted attacks against Jews.

Genuine liberals, it certainly seems, would intuitively understand this.

Top 10 warning signs you may be a ‘Guardian Left’ anti-Semite

H/T Seumas

The Guardian’s associate editor Seumas Milne – who, in case it needs reminding, worked for the pro-Stalinist communist publication ‘Straight Left’ earlier in his career – was kind enough to Tweet a link to a piece in Foreign Policy Magazine by Stephen Walt.

The piece is titled ‘Top 10 warning signs you are a liberal imperialist‘.

The essay itself, written by the co-author of a book widely condemned for its shoddy scholarship and for arguing that Jews wield too much power in Washington, D.C., is unintentionally quite comical – a kind of ‘Western Guilt-Driven Guide to the Universe for Dummies’ – and includes, as #1, the following:

You frequently find yourself advocating that the United States send troops, drones, weapons, Special Forces, or combat air patrols to some country that you have never visited, whose language(s) you don’t speak, and that you never paid much attention to until bad things started happening there.

Whilst I don’t speak fluent academic-ese like the esteemed Harvard professor, I have become adept at deciphering an even more obscure dialect – the language of the Guardian Left.

So, in the spirit of Walt’s mockery of those who ‘unknowingly’ are compromised by a deep-seeded imperialism lurking in their subconscious, here is CiF Watch’s own ‘Top 10 warning signs you may be a Guardian Left anti-Semite – a list, per the links below, inspired by real life Guardianistas!)

1. You claim the mantle of human rights yet find yourself running interference for anti-Semitic world leaders and helping to spread the propaganda of Islamist extremists - and even terrorist leaders who openly call for the murder of Jews.

2.  You claim to condemn racism at every opportunity yet are strangely silent or seriously downplay even the most egregious examples of antisemitic violence.

3. You claim to be a champion of progressive politics yet often use terms and advance tropes indistinguishable from classic right wing Judeophobia - such as the argument that Jews are too powerful, use their money to control politics, and are not loyal citizens.

4. You support nationalism, and don’t have a problem with the existence of more than 50 Muslim states, yet you oppose the existence of the only Jewish state in the world.

5. Even when putatively condemning antisemitism you can’t help but blame the Jews for causing antisemitism.

6. You condemn the Holocaust yet also obsessively condemn living Jews for their alleged ‘inhumanity’ and even argue that Jews haven’t learned the proper lessons from the attempt to annihilate their co-religionists from the planet.

7. You not only support Palestinian rights, but support their “right” to launch deadly terrorist attacks on Israeli Jews, under the mantle of anti-imperialist “resistance”.

8. You characterize extremist reactionary Islamist movements as “progressive“.

9. You accuse Jews of cynically misusing the charge of antisemitism to “stifledebate about the Jewish state.

10. You champion diversity and multiculturalism of all kinds, yet suggest that Jewish particularism represents an inherently tribal, ethnocentric and racist identity.

I’m sure there are more than ten – so please feel free to add to our list in the comment section below.

(This post was revised at 15:15 EST to correct a mistake concerning Seumas Milne’s work at Straight Left.)

Richard Millett interviewed for Israeli documentary about antisemitism

H/T NGO Monitor

The following 40-minute documentary about antisemitism, which aired on Israeli Channel 2 on the eve of Yom HaShoah, April 7, features interviews with Richard Millett, Abe Foxman, Howard Jacobson, and Alan Dershowitz – and includes clips of several figures who will be familiar to CiF Watch readers, including Lauren Booth, Jenny Tonge, and Ken O’Keefe.

Much of the show is in Hebrew, but many of the interviews are in English.  You can jump to Millett’s segment by forwarding to the 17:15 mark.  The other commentators noted above follow Millett.

The antisemitic reflex: A Jew-baiting Tweet by the Guardian’s Michael White

Today, pending an investigation, the Labour Party suspended Baron Ahmed, a member of the House of Lords and the first male Muslim peer in the UK, for claiming that his prison sentence several years ago for dangerous driving resulted from pressure placed on the court system by Jews “who own newspapers and TV channels”.

He reportedly said the following during a TV interview last year.

“My case became more critical because I went to Gaza to support Palestinians. My Jewish friends who own newspapers and TV channels opposed this.”

Ahmed was imprisoned for 3 months in 2008 after sending text messages while driving.

Today, on Twitter, as news of Ahmed’s suspension was reported, there was this exchange between veteran Guardian journalist Michael White and Daniel Finkelstein, a journalist for The Times.

The exchange continued:

continues

Let’s be clear about what just transpired.

A reporter for The Times expressed surprise that news of a Labour Party investigation into racism against a member of Parliament was not in BBC radio news summaries.

A Guardian journalist, noting that Finkelstein was Jewish, immediately engaged in an ad hominem and completely irrelevant attack, raising the topic of settlements in the state of Israel.

The Guardian reporter’s ugly response to Finkelstein’s Tweet represents the classic antisemitic “reflex” of holding Jews collectively responsible for the perceived sins of the state of Israel – a bigoted association he’s made on at least one other occasion in a column at the Guardian.

Daniel Finkelstein is not an Israeli.

He happens to be a Jew but is no less British than Michael White.

Middlesex Univ. bans public from ‘Free Palestine Society’ event with Lauren Booth

Cross posted by Richard Millett

middlesexuniThe Facebook page above reads:

“THE UNIVERSITY HAVE RESTRICTED THE EVENT TO MIDDLESEX STUDENTS & STAFF ONLY…PLEASE EMAIL MIDDLESEX UNIVERSITY TO SEEK THEIR JUSTIFICATION FOR THIS UNPRECEDENTED RESTRICTION.”

The event was the Free Palestine Society’s The Case for Boycotting, Divesting, and Sanctions against Israel held last night. The speakers were Lauren Booth, John Rees and Asghar Bukari. The location was Middlesex University in Hendon, a highly Jewish populated suburb of London.

On her blog Booth quotes Gilad Atzmon’s anti-Semitic rhetoric extensively and tries to back him up. For example:

“No Jews do not run the world. They get others to do it for them.’”….This argument is not without example. In 2001 Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, made unguarded comments, about relations with the United States and the peace process.
“I know what America is,” he told a group of terror victims, apparently not knowing his words were being recorded. “America is a thing you can move very easily, move it in the right direction. They won’t get in their way.”

And she directly implicates British Jews in what she sees as Israel’s “crimes” when she writes:

“What must also continue, freely and without hindrance are debates into the British Jewish communities role in funding the ethnic cleansing of the West Bank and East Jerusalem via such bodies as the Jewish National Fund.”

Bukhari is the founder of the Muslim Public Affairs Committee. MPAC was banned from university campuses in 2004 after being branded anti-Semitic by the National Union of Students and Bukhari, himself, supported and financed Holocaust denier David Irving.

MPAC recently tweeted that Zionism equals Nazism.

Rees has, inter alia, reportedly identified with the Mahdi Army, a terror cell responsible for the deaths of thousands of Iraqis.

We did email Middlesex University to ask why concerned members of the public were banned, but the response bore no relation to the question. Middlesex University responded:

“This is a Students’ Union supported society event which is open to students and staff at the University. As a University we have a responsibility to protect freedom of speech within the law and support the rights of our students to meet and discuss issues that matter to them. The University hosts a wide range of events, presenting many different views, and we would not seek to prevent them or influence the content unless there are very strong grounds to do so.”

When I contacted Sam Spindlow, of Corporate Communications at Middlesex University and who was responsible for disseminating the statement, even he agreed that the statement did not explain why the public was banned, but said he could go no further than that.

The reality is that at a similar event at Middlesex University last year Ken O’Keefe compared Jews to Nazis, and Jenny Tonge said that “Israel won’t be here forever” for which she was chucked out of the Liberal Democrats.

Middlesex University’s new policy seems to be to allow hate speech to go virtually unopposed. Concerned members of the public are to be banned from anti-Israel events, although whether this policy is legal is open to question with Middlesex University being a taxpayer funded institution.

A few defiant members of Middlesex University’s Jewish Society did attend last night. One walked out in disgust at what was being said about Israel. She said that a pro-Israel question was asked during the Q&A but was dismissed by Lauren Booth as being “too Zionist a question to take seriously.” Another member of the Jewish Society handed out pro-Israel leaflets afterwards.

Jonathan Hoffman and I weren’t allowed in so we waited outside till the end and engaged in discussion with the students as they exited the room. We didn’t get very far though. We were told we were “child killers” and as I left a student shouted at me “Go back to Golders Green*.”

That kind of vile racism has now become the norm at anti-Israel events, but Middlesex University dangerously continues to look away.

*Golders Green is another highly Jewish populated suburb of London.
** Thanks to Stand For Peace for its research on Booth, Bukhari and Rees.

dscf4333

Jonathan Hoffman and security outside last night’s Free Palestine Society event at Middlesex University.

“Israel-firsters”, “traitors” and other epithets hurled at Chuck Hagel’s critics by Guardian readers

The empirical probability that reader comments in response to Israel-related content at the Guardian and ‘Comment is Free’ will quickly devolve into anti-Zionist vitriol is as good as the likelihood that the specific epithets used by commenters will be consistent with the Guardian Left narrative.

Both are near certainties.    

While we’ve often posted about reader comments which are more explicitly antisemitic, the following thread effectively illustrates the manner in which the debate over Hagel’s nomination for Defense Secretary has been framed at the Guardian – where a conservative Republican has engendered the sympathy of the Guardian Left due largely to the political orientation of those aligned against him.   

Here is a brief snippet of the conversation below the line of Matt Williams’ Jan. 7 Guardian report, ‘Obama keen on Chuck Hagel nomination despite opposition‘.

The Israeli-Palestinian issue is “never debated” in the US.

1

2

Israel, and American “Israel Firsters” control the US.

3

Historically oppressed Jews have now become the oppressors. 

  4

American Israel-Firsters are, in fact, traitors to their country.

5

Then, there was this rebuttal:

smWe hear it all the time below the line, following dog whistles above the line, at ‘Comment is Free’. 

PMW reports endemic PA sponsored demonization of Jews: Routinely depicted as beasts, evil, satanic

Cross posted by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik at Palestinian Media Watch

Mahmoud Abbas: 

“Insulting religions, faiths, or religious symbols 
cannot in any way be a part of freedom of belief 
or freedom of expression.”

Religious lesson in official PA daily:

“The struggle between truth and falsehood is as ancient
as life upon this earth… The conflict between us and the Jews
is not a conflict about land and borders,
but rather a conflict about faith and existence.”

In response to the film depicting Islam’s prophet Muhammad negatively, using terms like “child molester” and “murderous thug,” Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas “condemned the insult to [Islam's] prophet” and added that he rejects “freedom of belief or freedom of expression when it comes to criticizing religion.”

Mahmoud Abbas’ condemnation of the defamation of Islam contrasts the PA policy of defamation of Judaism, demonization of Jews and promotion of Antisemitism, all of which are integral messages expressed by PA leaders and transmitted through the structures under their control.

Recent examples of this policy can be found in all areas of PA expression. The moderator at a Fatah ceremony demonized Jews as “the descendants of the apes and pigs.” A PA TV narrator said that Jews praying at the Western Wall are “sin and filth.” Senior PA official Jibril Rajoub referred to Jews as “Satans” and “Zionist sons of bitches” on PA TV. The PA Mufti and other religious leaders have defined Jews as the “enemy of Allah,” even preaching the following Hadith in PA TV sermons: “The Prophet says: ‘You shall fight the Jews and kill them.’” Indeed, what these and many other examples document is that in the PA, not only is demonization of Jews and Judaism common practice, it is also sometimes promoted as a religious Islamic imperative.

Significantly, the PA’s promotion of hatred of Jews is not limited to religious leaders and PA officials. PA TV featured young girls on children’s programs saying that Jews and Christians are “inferior and smaller, more cowardly and despised” and that “our enemy, Zion, is Satan with a tail.” Following classical European Antisemitism, a history program on PA TV taught that “Jews are hated in every society in which they have lived, because of their behavior relating to their great love of money.” The official PA daily on Israel’s independence day said Israel’s goal was to turn a “Jewish monarchy in Palestine into a basis for their [the Jews'] eternal rule over the world, that others, ‘goyim’ [non-Jews], must submit to their will.” (See details and many more sources below.)

The hypocrisy of the PA is evident. Abbas condemns the recent video about Muhammad and states that “insulting religions, faiths, or religious symbols” is not protected “freedom of expression.” At the same time, his own government’s policy is to indoctrinate Palestinians to hate Jews and to defame Judaism.

Click to view the full report in PDF
PA Chairman Abbas condemned defaming Islam and religion:

 

“President [Mahmoud Abbas] again condemned the insult to [Islam's] prophet Muhammad. He said… that from a religious, human, and moral point of view we cannot accept this insult, since it is a blatant attack on the entire belief system and the sensitivities of more than a billion Muslims in the world. President Abbas added that insulting religions, faiths, or religious symbols cannot in any way be a part of freedom of belief or freedom of expression…”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 17, 2012]

PA defames Judaism and Jews:

PMW has collected 25 representative examples of this hate speech from PA and Fatah leaders, spokespeople, children’s programs and official media. Most are from 2012 and 2011.

These examples appear first as short quotes and are followed by their full contexts and sources.

Additional documentation can be found on PMW’s website, including hate speech during the PA terror campaign (the Intifada 2000-2005), when PA religious leaders repeatedly called for thekilling of Jews as an Islamic demand.

Young girl on PA TV children’s program

“Jews and Christians are “inferior and smaller, more cowardly and despised.”

Moderator at Fatah ceremony

“Our war with the descendants of the apes and pigs (i.e., Jews) is a war of religion and faith.”

History program on PA TV

“The Jews are hated in every society in which they have lived, because of their behavior relating to their great love of money… This is how they harmed the societies that embraced them.”

PA TV narrator, on Jerusalem

“The light rain [in Jerusalem] cleanses the steps of the foreigners [Jews] so that the feet [of Muslims] in prayer will not step on impurity.”

Official PA daily’s religious lesson by Sheikh Ishaq Feleifel 

The Jews’ “evilnature is drawn from Adam’s first son [who murdered his brother].”

PA TV Friday sermon

“These new Mongols…the Jews, the enemies of Allah and of His Messenger, the enemies of Allah and of His Messenger! Enemies of humanity in general, and of Palestinians in particular… Our enmity with the Jews is a matter of faith, more than an enmity because of occupation and the land… Even if donkeys would cease to bray, dogs cease to bark, wolves cease to howl and snakes to bite, the Jews would not cease to harbor hatred towards Muslims. … The Prophet says: ‘You shall fight the Jews and kill them.’”

PA TV narrator, documentary on Jerusalem

“From the balcony of our home, look out over [Islamic] holiness (visual: Western Wall) and on sin and filth (visual: Jews praying at the Western Wall).”

PA Mufti Muhammad Hussein

“The enemies of Allah [the Jews], who have violated all faith and religious laws, and even deviated from their humanity.

Official PA daily columnist on religion Sheikh Taleb Al-Silwadi

“Allah’s enemies, the children of Zion.”

Young girl on PA TV children’s program

“Our enemy, Zion, is Satan with a tail.”

Senior PA official Jibril Rajoub

“We are prepared to bring the Executive Committee in helicopters… so they will see no Jews, no Satans, no Zionist sons of bitches.”

PA Mufti Muhammad Hussein

“The Hour [of Resurrection] will not come until you fight the Jews. The Jew will hide behind stones or trees. Then the stones or trees will call: ‘Oh Muslim, servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.’”

Official PA daily:

“There is no limit to the greed of the Jews.”

Fatah official on PA TV

“The Jews were murderers of prophets.”

Official PA daily’s religious lesson by Sheikh Ishaq Feleifel 

“The conflict between us and the Jews is not a conflict about land and borders, but rather a conflict about faith and existence.”

Official PA daily on Israel’s Independence Day

“Zionism is an extreme religious ideology whose aim is political hegemony and the transformation of a Jewish monarchy in Palestine into a basis for their eternal rule over the world, that others, “goyim” [non-Jews], must submit to their will.”

PA daily quotes children’s march-chant:

“Jews, Jews! Your holiday is the Holiday of the Apes.”

Palestinian actor in PA TV interview

“The Jew doesn’t have a bent nose, and isn’t cowardly, and is not interested only in accumulating money. Of course, he is interested in accumulating money – the Jews throughout history, and in the religions, and the Quran tells us about the Jews and their worry over money.”

Official PA daily

“The rabbis of death and the promoters of pagan Zionist thought have continued to spew their poison among the Jews, in order to stir up and rouse feelings of animosity and hatred against the Palestinians.”

Chief Justice of PA Religious Court

“Concerning the Jews, the Holy Quran says that they lack understanding, are void of wisdom, know nothing, violate agreements, etc. However, the Jews were known – it was known about them throughout history – that they make false claims, lies, forgery, slander, and fabrications.”

Additional examples of PA’s Antisemitic hate speech and sources of all items cited in brief above:

Jews /Israelis are “Allah’s enemies”

Sheikh Taleb Al-Silwadi, columnist on religious affairs in the official PA daily:

“One of the established facts is that the voice of falsehood does not rebel [against the truth] except where those who hold the truth [Muslims] forego their truth. Then there becomes room for falsehood, such that it can kill, behave violently, spill blood, and desecrate sacred things. That is what Allah’s enemies, the children of Zion, are doing before the eyes and ears of the entire world.”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2012]

PA children taught to hate Jews and Christians: Jews and Christians are “inferior and smaller, more cowardly and despised”

Girl: Christians and Jews “are inferior and smaller, more cowardly and despised. They are remnants of the [Christian] crusaders and Khaibar (i.e., Jewish village destroyed by Muslims in 629)…”

[PA TV (Fatah), May 11 and June 2, 2012]

PA children taught to hate Jews 

Young girl Lina: “Our enemy, Zion, is Satan with a tail…”

[PA TV (Fatah), May 8, 2012]

PA children taught to hate Jews 

Young girl Laila: “Our enemy, Zion, is Satan with a tail…”

[PA TV (Fatah), April 7, 2012]

Senior PA official Jibril Rajoub says Jews are “Satans” and “Zionist sons of bitches”

“We are prepared to bring the Executive Committee in helicopters… so they will see no Jews, no Satans, no Zionist sons of bitches.”

[PA TV (Fatah), May 17, 2012]

Moderator at Fatah ceremony: Jews are “descendants of the apes and pigs”

“Our war with the descendants of the apes and pigs (i.e., Jews) is a war of religion and faith. Long Live Fatah!”

[PA TV (Fatah), Jan. 9, 2012]

PA Mufti Muhammad Hussein:

“The reliable Hadith (tradition attributed to Muhammad), [found] in the two reliable collections, Bukhari and Muslim, says:
“The Hour [of Resurrection] will not come until you fight the Jews.
The Jew will hide behind stones or trees.
Then the stones or trees will call:
‘Oh Muslim, servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.’”

[PA TV (Fatah), Jan. 9, 2012]

Official PA daily: “There is no limit to the greed of the Jews”

“Anyone with eyes in his head sees that there is no limit to the greed of the Jews… The nibbling away at the body [land] by the Jews continues at all levels.”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 30, 2011]

PA TV documentary on Jerusalem: Rain cleanses Jerusalem of Jews’ impurity so Muslims can pray

“The golden dome [of the mosque] shines with colors of the sky, with the white of clouds, while the joyous holiday [Eid Al-Adha] is good to the residents. The light rain cleanses the steps of the foreigners [Jews] so that the feet [of Muslims] in prayer will not step on impurity.”

[PA TV (Fatah), Nov. 6, 2011]

Kids’ hate speech against Jews at PA Arafat memorial broadcast 3 years in a row

Girl: “He [Arafat] was our former president… The Jews poisoned him and I hate them very much. Allah will repay them what they deserve.”
Boy: “He [Arafat] died from poisoning by the Jews. Well, I don’t know what he died from, but I know it was by the Jews.”

[PA TV (Fatah), Nov. 10, 2009, Nov. 10, 2010, Nov. 11, 2011]

Fatah official: Jews are “murderers of prophets,” so Jews are prone to murder

Secretary of Fatah branch in Jerusalem, Omar Shalabi, about the killing of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin:
Shalabi: “If the Jews were murderers of prophets, why shouldn’t they murder a Prime Minister who signed a peace agreement?!”

[PA TV (Fatah), Nov. 11, 2011]

Op-ed in official PA daily: “The hatred towards Israeli Jews is not related to racist discrimination” – it’s because they deserve it

“The hatred towards Israeli Jews is not related to racist discrimination, and there is no nation, people, or country which started any hatred against them. It is the Jews who have always started every struggle and hostility; they view themselves as better than all the nations and more honored than all the peoples (since they are God’s Chosen People). They call everyone else ‘goyim’ [lit. 'nations'], who are below them in every respect. Moreover, they view themselves as deserving of all the goodness, glory and power on earth, and believe that they should attain ownership of the property of every non-Jew, in every way. Therefore, in every country where they live, we see that they seek to distinguish themselves from its inhabitants. They are concentrated in their own neighborhoods, and want everyone who lives with them to become their supporters. One of the things which stir up the nations against the Jews and plants [feelings] in their hearts against them is their tricks, which people understand…”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 2, 2011]

Official PA daily’s religious lesson: Judaism is a “distorted, corrupted, falsified religion”

Sheikh Ishaq Feleifel teaches religion:

“The struggle between truth and falsehood is as ancient as life upon this earth… yet the mighty Islam, from the breaking of its dawn and the spreading of its light up until our time, has been targeted by its enemies… the enemies have announced in a clear and provocative manner their despicable and terrible plot. Sixty-three years ago, the Israeli Prime Minister, Ben Gurion, stood at the UN after the entire world granted recognition to the malignant cancerous growth known as the State of Israel… The Prime Minister of this destructive cancerous growth stood up to declare the religion of the Jews in Palestine to the entire world. I hope that the [Islamic] nation will study this faith in order to know with certainty that the Jews talk, in conferences and in negotiations, only through their distorted, corrupted, falsified religion… The conflict between us and the Jews is not a conflict about land and borders, but rather a conflict about faith and existence.”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 3, 2011]

Official PA daily’s religious lesson: “[The Jews'] evil nature is drawn from Adam’s first son” who murdered his brother

Sheikh Ishaq Feleifel teaches religion:

“In this lesson I wanted to talk about Cain and Abel – that’s the first story on earth, whose victim was Abel, at the hands of his brother Cain – because this story shows a similarity to the Jews and their crimes… The Jews, by throwing off their yoke, followed in the footsteps of the first person on earth who threw off the yoke of Allah. Their [the Jews'] evil nature is drawn from Adam’s first son [who murdered his brother].”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 13, 2011]

Official PA daily on Israel’s Independence Day: Zionism is a religious Jewish plan to rule over the non- Jewish world, and “Goyim [non-Jews] must submit to their will”

“The source of the name ‘Zionism’ is ‘Mount Zion’, one of the four mountains upon which the city of Jerusalem was founded. The Jews believe that their God lives there. Zionism is an extreme religious ideology whose aim is political hegemony and the transformation of a Jewish monarchy in Palestine into a basis for their eternal rule over the world, that others, “goyim” [non-Jews], must submit to their will, which is drawn from the will of God.”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 15, 2011]

Official PA daily quotes children: “Jews, Jews! Your holiday [Passover] is the Holiday of Apes”

“The spring carnival has retained its [Palestinian] flavor in towns such as Bethlehem, Beit Sahour and Ramallah… with the demonstrations of the Scouts, songs, dances, and popular Palestinian hymns about Christian-Islamic unity and internal Christian unity. These hymns carry meaningful messages, in response to the Israeli prohibition [to enter Jerusalem], as seen in the calls of the youth who lead the procession of light, waving swords and not caring if anyone accuses them of Antisemitism: … ‘Our Lord, Jesus Christ, Christ redeemed us, with his blood he bought us, and today we are joyous while the Jews are sad,’ and, ‘Jews, Jews! Your holiday is the Holiday of the Apes, while our holiday is the Holiday of the Christ.’”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, April 19, 2011]

Palestinian actor in PA TV interview: Quran says Jews worry over money

Abd Al-Rahman Abu Al-Qasem, Palestinian actor living in Syria:

“Thirty or forty years ago, we presented the Jew in the theater as someone with a bent nose who lends [money] with interest and who understands nothing except money matters, and is cowardly, ugly, interested only in collecting money and controlling the people around him. However, this is not accurate or correct: The Jew doesn’t have a bent nose, and isn’t cowardly, and is not interested only in accumulating money. Of course, he is interested in accumulating money – the Jews throughout history, and in the religions, and the Quran tells us about the Jews and their worryover money.”

[PA TV (Fatah), Feb. 27, 2011]

Official PA daily’s headline: “Zionism reproduces the Holocaust”

“Day by day, Zionist racism is becoming more firmly and clearly entrenched in Israeli society… The rabbis of death and the promoters of pagan Zionist thought have continued to spew their poison among the Jews, in order to stir up and rouse feelings of animosity and hatred against the Palestinians, since the European and American forces of evil facilitated for them the [fulfillment of the] idea of the ‘national home’, in order to be rid of them and to remove from the European [social] fabric the results and implications of the Holocaust which they carried out against the Jews of Europe in Nazi Germany.”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 19, 2011]

History program on PA TV: Jews’ money lending “Shylock” behavior caused Antisemitism

Jordanian academic Arafat Hijazi:

“150 years ago, when there were no Jews in Palestine, the Jews were in Europe, in Eastern Europe, but the Jews suffered from persecution by the European nations. The reason was that they [the Jews] would harm the people of the lands in which they lived. They had a problem: Wherever they went, they were expelled, and were imprisoned.”

Jordanian academic Muhammad Dohal:

“The Jews are hated in every society in which they have lived, because of their behavior relating to their great love of money. Their behavior led to [Shakespeare's] famous story, the story of Shylock about money lending, which clings to the Jews. This is how they harmed the societies that embraced them, including the Palestinian society, the Arab-Palestinian society.”

[PA TV (Fatah), Oct. 17, 2010]

PA TV: Jews praying at the Western Wall is “sin and filth” – broadcast 2 years in a row

PA TV narrator: “They [Israelis] know for certain that our [Palestinian] roots are deeper than their false history. We, from the balcony of our home, look out over [Islamic] holiness and on sin and filth [Jews praying at the Western Wall].”

[PA TV (Fatah), Sept. 10, 2010 and Aug. 10, 2011]

PA Mufti: Jews are “enemies of Allah” who “deviated from their humanity”

Muhammad Hussein, Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine:

“The Al-Aqsa Mosque is threatened by the plans of the enemies of Allah [the Jews], who have violated all faith and religious laws, and even deviated from their humanity.

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 26, 2010]

PA TV: Don’t threaten kids with monsters, demons and Jews

PA cleric: “Bringing up children with fear, anxiety and panic, scaring them when they cry – once by mentioning a monster, another time a scarecrow or a thief, and some other time a Jew, a demon, or the sound of the wind and other things, in order to silence them. Then the child grows up as a coward.”

[PA TV (Fatah), April 23, 2010]

Jews are “enemies of Allah,” “enemies of humanity,” and “the Prophet says… ‘fight the Jews and kill them’”

The following are excerpts of a PA TV Friday sermon from a mosque that was broadcast on PA TV: “The loathsome occupation in Palestine – its land and its holy places – by these new Mongols and what they are perpetrating upon this holy, blessed and pure land…The Jews, the enemies of Allah and of His Messenger, the enemies of Allah and of His Messenger! Enemies of humanity in general, and of Palestinians in particular… Our enmity with the Jews is a matter of faith, more than an enmity because of occupation and the land… Oh Muslims! The Jews are the Jews. The Jews are the Jews. Even if donkeys would cease to bray, dogs cease to bark, wolves cease to howl and snakes to bite, the Jews would not cease to harbor hatred towards Muslims. The Prophet said that if two Jews would be alone with a Muslim, they would think only of killing him… The Prophet says: ‘You shall fight the Jews and kill them, until the tree and the stone will speak and say: ‘Oh Muslim, Oh servant of Allah’ – the tree and the stone will not say, ‘Oh Arab,’ they will say, ‘Oh Muslim’. And they will not say, ‘Where are the millions?’ and will not say, ‘Where is the Arab nation?’ Rather, they will say, ‘Oh Muslim, Oh servant of Allah – there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.’…”

[PA TV (Fatah), Jan. 29, 2010]

PA Chief Justice of Religious Court: Quran says Jews are evil

Dr. Tayseer Al-Tamimi, PA Chief Justice of Religious Court, and Chairman of Supreme Council of Islamic Law:
“Concerning the Jews, the Holy Quran says that they lack understanding, are void of wisdom, know nothing, violate agreements, etc. However, the Jews were known – it was known about them throughout history – that they make false claims, lies, forgery, slander, and fabrications, in order to justify their aggression, land theft, defilement of holy sites, appropriation of land, destruction of homes, murder of children, women, and the elderly.”

[PA TV (Fatah), June 9, 2009]

Official PA daily: Jews are sadists and liars

“[In his lecture, Dr. Yunes Amr, President of Al-Quds Open University] addressed the subject of ‘Jerusalem, capital of Arab culture,’ the characteristics of the Jews – their lies and their sadism.”

[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 25, 2009]

Jewish reaction to thousands of antisemitic Arab cartoons: No riots, no injuries, no deaths

Tom Gross wrote the following, in a recent post, about the non-existent “Israeli Jew” backed by non-existent “rich Jewish financiers” responsible for the YouTube video clip called the “Innocence of Muslims.”

Even after most Western news outlets corrected themselves last Thursday, a small minority of Western news columnists with a track record of attacking Israel continued to state that an Israeli Jew was behind the film.

Unsurprisingly, the media in the Arab world and Iran have continued this theme…blaming Jews for the anti-Islam film “Innocence of Muslims.” 

Here are a handful of the hateful cartoons in the Arab media, echoing these false accusations about the film, which didn’t inspire Jews to riot, engage in violence, nor the storm embassies of countries where such antisemitic depictions were sanctioned.

United Arab Emirates paper, Al-Bayan, Sept. 16, 2012: The caption reads “A joint vision of the production”

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

The Qatari paper Ar-Raya, Sept. 16, 2012. Note the stars of David on the filmmaker’s shirtsleeves. The caption reads: “The Killing of the US Ambassador in Libya.” 

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

The Omani paper, Al-Watan, Sept. 18, 2012: The movie clapboard says: “The film: Innocence of Muslims; Produced by The devil,” and the Jew is saying “Action”

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

The official PA daily published this cartoon on Aug. 23 that depicts Israel as a demonized religious Jew holding a knife dripping with blood.
Obama to Jew holding a knife dripping with blood:
“Don’t be afraid. There are no pictures or articles about you.”.

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

Iran’s Fars News Agency, Sept. 2012. Jewish devil

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

Fars News Agency, Sept. 2012. The Jewish serpent is being led by Satan.

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

Finally, going  beyond the current controversy over ‘The innocence of Muslims”, here are a couple of Arab “classics”.

Blood-drinking Jews are frequently portrayed in the Arab media. Shown here is one published in the Egyptian paper, Al Ahram in April 2001, showing an Arab placed into a flattening mill by two Israeli soldiers. Arab blood pours out & two Jews drink the blood laughingly.

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is shown drinking from a goblet labeled “The Palestinian Children’s Blood.”

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

This cartoon, with text in English designed for a foreign audience, was posted on the official website of the Palestinian Authority State on April 6, 2003

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

As Joel Kotek wrote in an essay published at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs:

The main recurrent motif in Arab cartoons concerning Israel is “the devilish Jew.” This image conveys the idea that Jews behave like Nazis, kill children and love blood. 

Palestinian cartoonists often place emphasis on the anti-Semitic accusation of “ritual murder” of children. This is underscored by their claim that Israelis target Palestinian children. To dehumanize Jews, Arab cartoonists often depict them as malevolent creatures: spiders, vampires or octopuses.

Here’s one last cartoon, which is cruel beyond words.

This cartoon, of Hitler and Anne Frank, was published in 2006 on the website of the Arab-European League (AEL), founded by Dyab Abou Jahjah, a Lebanese born Belgian Muslim leader

Aftermath: No riots, no injuries, no deaths.

Finally, these cartoons are anything but anomalies.  

There are thousands upon thousands of such hideously antisemitic depictions of Jews in the Arab media (in newspapers, magazines, and books), many of which can be found at the sites of Palestinian Media Watch, MEMRI and ADL.

The Guardian, as with most of the “mainstream” media, all but ignores such expressions of extreme hatred towards Jews in the Arab world.