Oh dear. it was bound to come sooner or later. As soon as anybody sticks their head above the parapet to criticise Israel, an attempt is made to slur them as an anti-semite. I now have the notorious Zionist propagandist Jonathan Hoffman on my case.
Hoffman is the Zionists’ equivalent of the Witchfinder-General. In July 2008 he produced a report on “Anti-Semitism on The Guardian Comment is Free”, in which his definition of anti-semites included “Those who question the Zionist aim of a Jewish Homeland”.
This blatant conflation of anti-Zionists with anti-Semites is typical of his methodology. It does not wash. There are a significant minority of anti-Zionist Jews, for one thing. My personal view is that all those now living in Israel and Palestine should be allowed to stay there, in a new secular and race-blind state. I do reject the state of Israel with its racially defined citizenship qualification. That is not an unusual position – Germany was only recently obliged by the EU to abandon citizenship laws based on race.
In 2004 Jonathan Hoffman made this laughable contribution as a submission in the consultation exercise on the BBC Charter:
I want to comment on the BBC’s persistent anti-Israel bias. They have
appointed Malcolm Balen as overall editor of programmes with a Mid-East
content but it has made no difference
It is, incidentally, interesting that he appears to have the impression that the appointment of Malcolm Balen was supposed to help Israel. Anyone know anything about Mr Balen?
It is worth comparing Hoffman’s complaint about the BBC to the comment by OrwellianUK after the blog entry before this.
Anyway, Hoffman is now onto my case. I have just had the following email exchange with him:
Dear Mr Murray
Are you content that your site is being used to propagate anti-Semitism? :
I am a newcomer to your site. I found it because rense.com linked to your
recent colourfully titled piece on Gordon Brown (though they applied
asterisks where you did not).
I am delighted to find a former member of the British Establishment who holds
the views that you do and also that you clearly take an active interest in the comments left by your readers.
If you feel so inclined, I would be grateful if you might consider giving
your opinion on an issue regarding Israel that troubles me often: why is it that the European nations’ response to Israeli atrocities is so feeble and
half-hearted when, if it were a Muslim country doing the same thing, they would be down on it like a ton of bricks? Is it because, as respected Israeli historian and military adviser Martin van Creveld has revealed, a sizeable proportion of Israel’s nuclear weapons is trained on Europe? Is it because so much of the Western financial system and media is controlled by Zionists? Is it because the Mossad has penetrated the higher echelons of the European political Establishment?
There are many comments on my site that I do not agree with, not only the anti-Jewish ones. There are some very rude comments about me, for example, some completely untrue. There are currently people defending the use of the word “Paki”. I disagree with them too. There have been a number of offensively worded pro-Israel comments, and I have not deleted them. But I tend to the view that freedom of speech is most important, so I almost never delete anything from comments. My own views are the bits of the blog which I have written.
I have only ever deleted, I believe, 36 comments from my site in four years; 2 because they were about children of politicians, and 34 for being anti-semitic. This post from five days ago explained my position:
“ I have not deleted a single pro-Israeli comment from discussion on these pages, though I disagree profoundly with many. I have deleted three anti-Jewish comments. I should make it plain that I am in profound disagreement with those commenters who conflate Israel with Jews in general. We have had commenters excusing anti-Jewish comments on the grounds Jews are not a race, and positing claims of a world conspiracy of Jews and freemasons. I have only deleted three of these, because in general I believe the suppression of any opinion to be an evil which requires major justification. I find it hard to define the exact line which leads to deletion.
The great John Stuart Mill said it was legitimate to express the opinion that all corn merchants are thieves of the people’s bread; but it was not legitimate to shout the same thing to a howling mob at night carrying torches outside a corn merchant’s house. He was, as ever, right.
So almost any opinion can be expressed here. But I would be grateful if those people who have a serious grudge against Jews in general, would go and express their views on their own websites.
Michael has overstepped the mark by a posting about “Jews with their Satanic Smirks” and then introducing the Protocols of Zion. All of his 31 comments have therefore been deleted.”
In addition I have added numerous comments in dialogue with commenters to the effect that one should not confuse anger at the killings by Israel, with racism against Jews in general.
It is an extraordinary and terribly sad and bad thing that anti-semitism still exists. It is to me genuinely incomprehensible.
But sadly any discussion forum on Israel attracts two kinds of malevolent people.
The first kind are anti-semites.
The second are those who seek to portray as anti-semites anyone who opposes Israel’s appalling actions in Gaza. I rather fear you may be one of that kind of malevolent people, Jonathan.
I have given a fair and full answer to your question. Let me now ask you, are you content with the murder by Israel of so many women, children and old people in Gaza?