The New McCarthyism – The “Anti-Semitism” Hysteria Gripping the UK 476


Tony Greenstein has been suspended from the Labour Party for alleged anti-Semitism. Tony is 100% Jewish from an Orthodox family. But he is also one of the founders of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, and in the current hysterical witch-hunt, being pro-Palestinian rights is sufficient indication of anti-Semitism. Just as making herbal medicine used to make you a witch.

The catalyst for the campaign is that one of the clearest dividing lines between Blairites and Corbyn supporters is Israel. Blairites are unanimously, unequivocally pro-Israel and prepared to defend even the most blatantly disproportionate Israeli attacks on Gaza, land grabs or checkpoint shootings as self-defence. Corbyn supporters unanimously have more sympathy for the plight of the Palestinians and are critical of what they view (and I agree) as the apartheid state Israel has developed.

Because of the dreadful persecution of the Jews in the 20th century, anti-Semitism is the most emotionally charged of all political accusations. As it should be. Anti-Semitism is an appalling racism, and while all racism is evil, recent history makes anti-Semitism especially charged.

The background is that the Blairites are in utter political disarray. They and the rest of the Right are struggling against popular revulsion at the massive wealth inequalities fostered by their extreme neo-liberal policies these past four decades. There are very few things they can say which gain any popular traction. So they reach for the dread accusation of anti-Semitism.

The other meme of the right which gains popular support is the massive exaggeration of the threat of “Islamist” terrorism, again fuelled by natural popular revulsion at events like Paris and Brussels. Government programmes like Prevent are designed to further inculcate Islamophobia. All these issues can then be merged as a symplistic lie that Muslims hate Jews, therefore those defending Muslims from Islamophobia are also anti-Semitic. The witch-hunt spreads further.

This is the background to David Cameron’s extraordinary parliamentary attack on Sadiq Khan. Less attention has been paid to an even more appalling parliamentary exchange yesterday as allegations of anti-semitism were thrown around with gay abandon:

– Matthew Offord: Just weeks after the co-chairman of the Oxford University Labour club stepped down, saying that a large proportion of both the OULC and the student left in Oxford “have some kind of problem with Jews”, I am sure my right hon. Friend will be incredulous to hear that students who attended the National Union of Students conference in Brighton yesterday debated boycotting Holocaust Memorial Day and then went on to elect as its president someone who described the University of Birmingham as “something of a Zionist outpost” in British higher education. May we have a Minister come to the Dispatch Box to set out measures that the Government will take to counter the rise in anti-Semitism that is being fomented on university campuses?
– Chris Grayling: That is simply unacceptable in our society. The views expressed yesterday are not acceptable. The shadow Leader of the House was absolutely right when he talked about anti-Semitism in his own party. All of us from all political parties should work to stamp it out across our society, as it is simply unacceptable.
– Bob Blackman: Further to the question by my hon. Friend the Member for Hendon (Dr Offord), it is ironic that the Holocaust Educational Trust was holding a reception and information session in this place at the same time as the National Union of Students was debating a motion to boycott Holocaust Memorial Day, and that speakers in favour of that were applauded for saying that Holocaust Memorial Day was not inclusive enough. Clearly, there is a great deal of work to be done on education to combat the scourge of anti-Semitism, so may we have a debate in Government time on what action we are going to take to root that out once and for all among all political parties and among all sections of society?
– Chris Grayling: My hon. Friend is right. We are seeing that happen time and again—statements about the Jewish population in this country, statements about Israel, that are unacceptable in a democratic society. Of course, there are legitimate debates to be had about the future of Israel and Palestine and the peace process, but some of the anti-Semitic views that are appearing in our society are simply unacceptable. [Interruption.] Labour Members mention Islamophobia. I have stood at the Dispatch Box time and again and condemned Islamophobia in this country, but that is not a reason for not paying attention to the issue of anti-Semitism, which is becoming more and more of a problem and must be addressed head-on now by all those in public life, including the Labour party.
– Barry Sheerman: [excerpt] After the unfortunate remarks by the Leader of the House about the Labour party being riddled with anti-Semitism, may I ask, as someone who has fought anti-Semitism in the Labour party and in this country all his life, whether we can have an early debate about that issue? That is so important on a day when the people who want to take us out of Europe have invited Marine Le Pen to come here and speak.
– Chris Grayling: On the issue of anti-Semitism and the Labour party, I would encourage Labour Members to have a debate. The shadow Leader of the House is absolutely right to have written the article he did, saying that anti-Semitism is not acceptable, but, of course, his words have to be turned into action by the Labour party.

I frankly find it very difficult to believe that anti-Semitism is rife in Oxford University, and find the prominence given to the unsubstantiated claims of one single extreme pro-Israel activist rather extraordinary. The attack on new NUS President Malia Bouattia is a truly horrible piece of witch-hunting. But it is useful in one thing; it makes the witch-hunt’s primary method, the conflation of anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism, absolutely explicit.

Daniel Clemens, the president of Birmingham J-Soc, said her response was “completely unsatisfactory”. “There is quite a bit of uproar among the wider campus and student community,” Clemens said. “I think that anti-Zionism and antisemitism are two and the same thing. Zionism is the belief that Jewish people should have a homeland to live in without threat of annihilation or war. This stems from a Jewish belief. So when someone attacks Zionism they’re indirectly attacking Judaism as a religion, because the two go hand in hand.”

The idea that the religious belief of entitlement to the land of the Palestinians, is such that it is racist to deny the land to those who hold that belief, is frankly crazy. But that is the entire intellectual basis of the current witch-hunt, which operates solely on conflating the anti-Zionism of Tony Greenstein with anti-Semitism. It is a constant theme in the media, led of course by the Blairite cheerleaders at the Guardian. I called out Nick Cohen on his hate speech a few weeks ago.

Andrew Gilligan in the Daily Telegraph even completely fabricated a story that DFID had withdrawn funding for the charity War on Want because it organised “anti-Semitic” conferences. I personally contacted the DFID spokesman, who said that no funding had been withdrawn at all. But more disturbing is that, again, Gilligan seeks to portray simple anti-Zionist statements as anti-Semitic. He objects to:

“At another rally – sponsored by War on Want – a speaker said that British government policy was created by “Zionist and neo-con lobbies”.”

That is a statement which I – and millions of others – would heartily endorse. But we are not anti-Semites. Unsurprisingly, Gilligan calls in precisely the same Oxford University student to back up his wild accusations.

Anti-Semitism does exist. In a membership as large as that of the Labour Party, there are bound to be a handful around, and if they can be identified they should indeed be expelled. I have seen a couple of examples quoted – people who talk of “big noses” and “jewish bankers”. Certainly such people must be shunned. In my lifetime’s experience, anti-Semitism is more prevalent on the right than the left, but fortunately does not infect a significant proportion of the population in the UK. I have yet to encounter any in Scotland.

But to conflate anti-Semitism with opposition to the apartheid state of Israel is to demean the very meaning of anti-Semitism. If they really had respect for its victims, they would not seek to do that.


476 thoughts on “The New McCarthyism – The “Anti-Semitism” Hysteria Gripping the UK

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  • Ross Mac

    I too have never come across anti-Semitism in Scotland. There were Jewish kids at my primary school in Glasgow (Shawlands, early Seventies) and there was racism (anti-Irish, anti-Pakistani) aplenty at the time. In fact I’ve only ever heard two anti-Semitic comments in my life – both times from elderly people in Yorkshire as it happens. Is it anti-Semitic to say that anti-Semitism exists largely in the imagination of Zionists?

  • Cameron Brodie

    antisemitism = a form of racism
    anti-Zionism = objection to’ race-based nationalism

    Conflating the two, only serves to further the Zionist agenda.

    Was Israel intended to be a pluralistic, secular democracy, or was it always intended to be an apartheid state?

    ERETZ-ISRAEL [(Hebrew) – the Land of Israel, Palestine] was the birthplace of the Jewish people. Here their spiritual, religious and political identity was shaped. Here they first attained to statehood, created cultural values of national and universal significance and gave to the world the eternal Book of Books.

    After being forcibly exiled from their land, the people kept faith with it throughout their Dispersion and never ceased to pray and hope for their return to it and for the restoration in it of their political freedom.

    Impelled by this historic and traditional attachment, Jews strove in every successive generation to re-establish themselves in their ancient homeland. In recent decades they returned in their masses. Pioneers, ma’pilim [(Hebrew) – immigrants coming to Eretz-Israel in defiance of restrictive legislation] and defenders, they made deserts bloom, revived the Hebrew language, built villages and towns, and created a thriving community controlling its own economy and culture, loving peace but knowing how to defend itself, bringing the blessings of progress to all the country’s inhabitants, and aspiring towards independent nationhood.

    In the year 5657 (1897), at the summons of the spiritual father of the Jewish State, Theodore Herzl, the First Zionist Congress convened and proclaimed the right of the Jewish people to national rebirth in its own country.

    This right was recognized in the Balfour Declaration of the 2nd November, 1917, and re-affirmed in the Mandate of the League of Nations which, in particular, gave international sanction to the historic connection between the Jewish people and Eretz-Israel and to the right of the Jewish people to rebuild its National Home.

    http://www.mfa.gov.il/mfa/foreignpolicy/peace/guide/pages/declaration%20of%20establishment%20of%20state%20of%20israel.aspx

    P.S. There are probably more Palestinians of Semitic ancestry than there are Jews of Semitic lineage. So, is Zionism antisemitic?

    • Rosemary Scott

      I don’t see any mention in the Balfour Declaration of protecting the people of Arab descent, who were living in Palestine in 1917.

        • Cameron Brodie

          Perhaps so, but it appears that the British Establishment understood how colonialism works, being of a colonialist outlook themselves. For example, didn’t Churchill consider the Palestinians to have forfeited their right to their homeland, as they had not followed progressive and enlightened paths to civilised development?

          “The phrase ‘the establishment in Palestine of a National Home for the Jewish people’ was intended and understood by all concerned to mean at the time of the Balfour Declaration that Palestine would ultimately become a ‘Jewish Commonwealth’ or a ‘Jewish State’, if only Jews came and settled there in sufficient numbers.” – Leopold Amery

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balfour_Declaration

  • K Crosby

    Antisemites always conflate Judaism and zionism; they do it because it is oxymoronic.

  • Silvio

    Here is a Youtube clip of Israeli politician Shulamit Aloni (Minister of Education 1992 – 1993) in an interview with Democracy Now’s host Amy Goodman. When asked about the usual knee jerk reaction of labeling any criticism of Israel as anti-Semitic, she replied, “Well it’s a trick. We always use it.”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uW3a1bw5XlE

  • Quentin Poulsen

    Zionism itself is itself anti-Semitic as it implies Jews don’t belong in Europe or anywhere else apart from Israel.

    In actual fact, Semitic is a language family not a race, with the vast majority of its speakers being Arabs. Jews are not a race either. They are the followers of a religion. The original followers of that religion were in fact the same race as the Arabs, originating in the Arabian peninsula prior to the great climatic and landscape changes of several millenia ago.

    Those who claimed they were ‘returning’ to the Jewish homeland at the onset of the Zionist movement were predominantly European in terms of their ethnicity; in fact, they were mostly Eastern European – escaping Stalin and the pogroms, not Hitler. But the demographics in Israel have changed greatly in recent times, with more and more Mizrahi from the Middle East and Africa showing up.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Why did you delete that? It wasn’t a Jewish joke. It was a joke on the people of Grimsby, and it didn’t even show the joke. It showed the Audience reaction to the joke on the people from Grimsby. It may be very funny. I don’t know. I haven’t seen it.

    Talk about censorship gone nuts.

  • Anon1

    The mods are very busy on this thread because it would be terribly embarrassing for Craig if many of his ‘anti-Zionist’ readers were shown to be raving anti-Semites. Just imagine the ammunition that would give his Twitter friends!

    • Node

      Anon1

      You have previously agreed that Israel’s treatment of Palestine is genocide. Surely then people of conscience are obliged to criticise that pariah nation. Obviously this isn’t a problem for you, but perhaps you would advise me on the correct form of words to use. You claim that it is anti-Semitic to criticise Zionism. Others claim that criticising Israel is anti-Semitic. Please describe an acceptable method of condemning this brutal inhuman behaviour.

      • Node

        Yes you did. In the context of the discussion we were having, it was so overwhelmingly undeniable that Israel’s behaviour conformed to the definition of genocide that you conceded the point. I remember being pleasantly surprised that you had a shred of decency.

      • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

        “Anon1

        You have previously agreed that Israel’s treatment of Palestine is genocide.”
        _______________________

        I find that difficult to believe.

        But Node is an honourable chap who wouldn’t dream of being economical with the truth and so I should be grateful if he could refer us to the post in which that agreement appeared.

          • craig Post author

            MOD is deleting any agent provocateur comments aimed to introduce unacceptable positions ascribed to other people or challenging others to address them. Stop it. You have been warned repeatedly over months.

          • Resident Dissident

            You forget that this mod only allows certain favourites to dish out abuse and lies and that any response in kind will be deleted while the original stands. – post soon to be deleted.

          • Resident Dissident

            Craig don’t you think that Node and Fedup might also be acting as agent provocateurs as well?

          • Anon1

            Craig, what on earth are you on about? They come out with their ‘unacceptable positions’ all by themselves. If it takes a gentle prod to uncover the true nature of their opinions then that is to be encouraged, no?

          • Resident Dissident

            Anon 1 – it was me in response to Mr Goss telling us that anti-Semitism wasn’t a problem – perhaps I should Have linked to one of his old posts instead.

          • Anon1

            To be fair, instances of anti-Semitism do seem to have decreased since a certain contributor, who has a superinjunction against naming her, ceased posting.

          • Resident Dissident

            Don’t mind being called a provocateur but being called an agent is perhaps the true sign of an agent provocateur

    • Node

      Anyway, Anon1, you didn’t answer my question. What is the politically correct way of criticising a nation that murders 3 children per week?

  • Andy Wright

    I completely agree with this article. I lived in Israel for 3 years and because of the contribution I made to the Kibbutz, Dafna, I was offered a permanent place on that kibbutz. (Apparently kibbutzim, because they existed before the state of Israel, can offer non-Jews residency in Israel.) My views have never changed: anti-Semitism is wrong: what happened to the Jews during the Second World War was one of the worst atrocities in history; it is not surprising that Jews wish to feel secure so that such an atrocity can never happen again; but this should not be at the expense of any other ethnic/religious group. Palestinians have been refugees, or living in occupied territory, for over 65 years. That is a scandal and one that needs to be rectified.

    We might understand why someone who has been sexually abused goes on to commit abuse on others, but it certainly does not excuse it. In the same way, the atrocities that occurred to the Jewish people does not give them, or their Government, any right to commit atrocities to the Palestinians. We need to forget political slogans, be less concerned about correct language and focus much more on fundamental human rights. These human rights have, and are still being, denied to Palestinians for a life time.

  • bevin

    There is one aspect of this which is very positive. The fact that the NUS elected a muslim student with sensible views on zionism reflects a general awareness among the younger generation that something is really wrong with the world and that putting those wrongs right is well within their power.
    This is a generation which is making BDS increasingly effective despite the hysterical over reaction of those who believe that the Israeili government can do no wrong and that, if by chance it did, it would be racist to draw attention to it.
    It is also the generation which, in the USA, shrugged off the unanimous advice of the punditocracy and voted en masse for Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primaries. In Scotland it was brave enough to defy the warnings of the Unionists, while in Ireland it elected an unprecedented number of Independents to the Dail.
    It may very well, in London, punish the Islamophobes by voting for the Labour Mayoralty candidate; while in the Labour party I imagine that it is solidly committed to reforming the Augean stable of Blairism which have produced a front bench full of Tories and a party bureaucracy in the best traditions of Blair, Mandelson and Arthur Deakin.
    It seems that the grandchildren of the Baby Boomers are reacting against their parents conformist pessimism in much the same way that Generation X reacted against the ’60s and radicalism.

    • Anon1

      The world of student lefty politics exists very much in its own little bubble. When your student lefty types are finished protesting bedroom taxes, campaigning for safe spaces, and advancing the rights of transgendered persons not to feel ‘triggered’ by hand-clapping, they take their worthless 2:1s and mostly get on in the real world and start to pay taxes (after which their views seem to miraculously change), while a few useless ones hang around in activism for the rest of their lives. This latter group is irrelevant and ignored by everybody.

      BDS is less sobering, though. I have to buy a case of Israeli wine every time I see it mentioned. 😉

      • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

        Now, before the change of blog format one used to be able to see the exact time Craig started off a new thread.

        This is no longer possible but it is possible to get a rough idea by looking for the first comment (comments are given a time).

        So we can be fairly sure that Craig started off this new thread at roughly 12noon.

        It is now almost 8pm.

        I wonder if any other thread of Craig’s ever managed to get over 120 “comments” in a mere 8 hours on a weekday.

        Could this extraordinarily rapid and numerous response have anything to do with its theme, I wonder?

        • Anon1

          I can’t imagine, say, China’s treatment of the Tibetans garnering such a reaction.

          • Herbie

            Richard Gere’s got that one covered.

            Now isn’t quite the time to ramp up the heat.

            Later.

        • Paul Barbara

          Hmmm, could it possibly be because most commenters are reasonably decent, fairly intelligent people, and have no time for repression and land-grabbing?
          Also, the majority don’t invest in rose-tinted glasses for viewing a certain ‘country’?

      • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

        And if it could, it would seem to indicate that that not Georgia but Israel, Zionists and the Jews are uppermost on the minds of many of the regular commenters. I find that a little curious.

        • Herbie

          Israel and its supporters are quite important players on the world stage.

          It would be very very strange were their activities not scrutinised.

          It’s not so surprising that their supporters wish to deflect that scrutiny, but they’ll have to come up with much better arguments than they’ve produced to date.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Our prosemites* are very insistent. Why do we – unspecified – deplore Israel and not IS? First answer, of course, is that I personally do deplore IS. It’s a revolting entity and does revolting things. But as a corollary:

    Islamic State (according to IS): Aims to establish a Muslim Caliphate, open to settlement by Sunni Muslims, only, who can enjoy freedom from persecution, under their own laws. It is surrounded by enemies bent on its total destruction. Its violence is in response to their warlike activities and its elimination or subjugation of non-Sunni people within its intended borders is wholly justified by Allah. It reserves the right to behave like a mad dog (see videos, if you have a strong stomach) irrespective of international law, and has demonstrated this in Iraq and Syria. Its excesses are intended to deter its enemies.

    (according to the antiISISic enemies of this entity): Violent incipient terrorist state pleading religion as its rationale.
    (according to some): Promoted and supported by USA to serve its regional interests.

    Jewish State (according to Regev): Has established the State of Israel, open to settlement by Jews, only, who can enjoy freedom from persecution, under their own laws. It is surrounded by enemies bent on its total destruction. Its violence is in response to their warlike activities and its elimination or subjugation of non-Jewish people within its intended borders is wholly justified by G-D. It reserves the right to behave like a mad dog (see Moshe Dayan, whose meme this is) irrespective of international law, and has demonstrated this in Lebanon and Gaza. Its excesses are intended to deter its enemies.

    (according to the antisemitic enemies of this entity): Violent terrorist state pleading religion as its rationale.
    (according to some): Promoted and supported by USA to serve its regional interests.

    Granted, there is a difference of scale. But very little of principle. If I accept Israel in its present form, I am bound to accept Daesh as it stands.

    *prosemitic proselytes, indeed

    • Tony_0pmoc

      Ba’al Zevul, You Wrote “Why do we – unspecified – deplore Israel and not IS?”

      a) Who’s we?

      b) Can you please tell me who does not deplore IS?

      I will tell you who does not deplore IS…and that is the people who are Responsible for the Creation and Support of IS.

      The Governments, and Private Companies of

      The USA, The UK, France, Israel,Turkey, Saudi Arabia…and a few others.

      I bet you didn’t know that….and you are even older than me???

      You don’t believe me do you?

      I won’t bore you with The Evidence.

      You are probably Faith Based.

      Tony

      • Ba'al Zevul

        I think you have misunderstood me, Tony. The question has repeatedly been asked or implied by our pro-Israeli contingent, not me. It’s one of the stock ploys -‘you’re being nasty about Israel, but you never talk about [insert unpleasant Muslim group here]’ – to change the subject. I’m saying it’s perfectly possible to conflate the two, if Israel insists, and not to Israel’s credit.

        • Ba'al Zevul

          And no, I am very emphatically not faith based. I have no idea where you get that from.

        • Tony_0pmoc

          Yeh, I’m embarrassed by posting the thing (I must tell the truth) 3 times (one on the wrong thread – but I claim it was a test..I even got my email address slightly wrong)…

          However, I did get a Comms Fault Message too..and my upload speed is pretty good…even when I have had a drink.

          sorry…There’s a good band on tonight so I’m off to have a bath.

          Tony

    • Paul Barbara

      But WHO created ISIS, and why? I won’t try to explain, at this juncture, except to say ‘Cui bono’?

  • Andy

    The Blairites have given up attacking Corbyn, for now, so now they are accusing his supporters of being anti-Semites, the Party has to be purged! The New McCarthyism it is.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    There is operative a parallel supremacist thought-process, which seems to me Swiftian in its absurdity.

    Those Jewish people who oppose Zionism often are slandered as being ‘anti-Semitic’. Similarly, those Muslims who oppose Islamism/Jihadism often nowadays are accused of being, ‘Islamophobic’.

    • giyane

      Yes Suhayl, it’s taken a lot of political and journalistic sweat to produce that stereotype of Islam as violent and mad. The fanatics at the time of the British Raj were those who refused to engage in this country’s age-old technique of dividing and ruling, employing one set of natives against another.

      Craig has helpfully deleted my comment to this effect earlier. Which tends to make me think that he is using the McCarthyist tide of anti-apartheid feeling against Israel where it suits his own political ambitions, while failing to condemn the new wave of colonialism of the war on terror which continues to divide and rule the Muslims. The Islamists and their politically correct stooges , the UK imams, are being set against the commonsense of the vast majority of Muslims who hate the bloodshed and homelessness that has been caused in Afghanistan, Somalia, Egypt, Yemen, Iraq, Syria Pakistan etc.

      Nothing that David Cameron has ever said in his life is remotely straight. The man is as bent as a weasel.

    • craig Post author

      It has always been the policy of this blog – openly stated – that anti-Semitic comments are deleted. Today is no different in that regard.

      That includes comments introducing anti-Semitic positions or subjects while purporting to oppose them.

      • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

        “That includes comments introducing anti-Semitic positions or subjects while purporting to oppose them.”
        ______________________

        Does that not infringe your principle of not assuming motivation?

        • craig Post author

          aaah, but it’s my blog. In practice, no judgement required. For example either ResDis or Anon1 introduced the name of a well known banking family onto this thread. Nobody else had mentioned them. Agent provocateur activity plain as a pikestaff. Deleted.

          • Resident Dissident

            I don’t care at all if you delete references to the name of a well known banking family, Kh****s, P**** of Z*** or even links promoting them providing it is done consistently rather than selectively – you might want to point the mods to the back catalogue.

          • Anon1

            The blogger ‘Nobody’ is well known for his anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. Granted, you weren’t to know that, but to delete posts pointing to the fact takes the piss.

          • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

            Craig

            then what should the consequences be when one of the most stalwart contributors to this blog – he writes from Birmingham – constantly brings that same well-known banking family into various threads?

    • bevin

      It is really very simple: ” unscrupulous provocateurs are making false or unfair or dated claims about people, especially in the Labour party being anti-semites.”
      Can you see the similarity now?

    • Paul Barbara

      Say again? The MSM are digging up Jeremy Corbyn being on platforms with alleged dodgies from years ago; and like one of the first comments on this post, ‘It’s a trick. We do it all the time’.
      It’s precisely like McCarthyism, and done with the same wilful intent to wrongfully demonise it’s victims.

  • Resident Dissident

    Most unfair the Moderator has deleted the post from our Nashi friends from Savuskina Street – I wanted to ask them is they believed in fairies and Putin earning about £90k last year.

    • Herbie

      Dunno why you’re so down on Putin.

      Seems to be one of the few friends Netanyahu has left on the international scene. A friendship that shall be very very important going forward.

      And the leaders of the World Jewish Congress, Lauder and Singer are impressed with Putin’s work on behalf of Jews in Russia:

      “A delegation of the World Jewish Congress (WJC) and the Russian Jewish Congress (RJC), led by WJC President Ronald S. Lauder, met with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Kremlin on Tuesday to discuss Jewish life in Russia, and the country’s continued positive relations with Israel.”

      “Lauder commended Putin for fighting anti-Semitism in Russia and praised the country for ensuring that its Jews continue to live an active and peaceful life. Jews have been part of the social fabric of Russia for more than 1,300 years, Lauder said, and have contributed to all areas of life – culture, science, academia and others.”

      “Over the course of a 90-minute conversation, the two discussed many issues pertaining to the Middle East, with Lauder praising the positive between Israel and Russia. Lauder called on the Russian leader to show more support for Israel in international bodies such as the United Nations. Lauder told Putin that the Jewish people are very grateful for the good relationship between Russia and the State of Israel, and called on him to translate this alliance into more international support in organizations like the United Nations Human Rights Council.”

      http://www.jpost.com/Diaspora/WJCs-Lauder-meets-with-Putin-to-discuss-Jewish-life-in-Russia-support-for-Israel-451751

      • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

        You seem to be trying to damn Netanyahu by saying he’s buddy-buddy with Putin.

        The implication is that Putin’s (also) a baddy.

        But usually, whenever you speak about Putin, you’re calling him a good guy.

        Is there not a contradiction there somewhere?

        • Herbie

          It’s not about goodies and baddies.

          That’s simply your own childish approach to politics. Res Diss’s too.

          No. It’s about new alliances in a changing world.

          Yourself and Res Diss will soon be receiving instructions to that effect.

          Putin is now officially a goodie, at least insofar as your childish analysis is concerned.

          All change!!

          • Anon1

            “It’s not about goodies and baddies.”

            Quite right, herbs. It’s about peeps, sheeps and elites.

            Only the masses don’t know.

            That’s my geopolitical analysis.

            Webster Tarpley gets it.

          • Herbie

            It’s curious, Anon1, that such a rabid racist anti muslim bigot such as yourself is concerned with anti semitism at all.

            Surely you see yourself in them.

            There’s no difference.

          • lysias

            Oceania has always been at war with — I don’t remember, was that Eurasia or Eastasia?

      • Resident Dissident

        I don’t like Netanyahu either – I think if you look close enough you will find not a little anti-Semitism among the Putin regime.

  • bevin

    Andrew Levine has a very good article today. It makes the point that I attempted to establish, but much more clearly:
    “…..The very idea of a Herrenvolk democracy in Israel-Palestine – of a democracy for Jews that superintends the colonial domination of Palestinians – is therefore antithetical to a basic principle of the American and French revolutionary traditions. Insofar as Kant and Hegel and the others were right, it is antithetical to the spirit of modern political morality generally….”
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/04/22/one-small-step-for-bernie-one-giant-leap-for-humankind/

  • stattersall

    Utter nonsense. Zionism is a 19th century ideological construct that was influenced by a 19th century pan- Germanic ideological construct that was brewing in Austria at the same time-hence: a jewish state for a jewish race – ein reich ein volk. Any criticism of the Zionist narrative is anti-semitism or self-hatred. For eg. Heaven forbid if someone tentatively suggests that DNA testing has proved modern day Israelis exhibit the Italian genotype or that Ashkenazis may be Khazars; or even more alarmingly, Palestinians might be the descendants of the ancient Hebrews.

  • Silvio

    It is good to see that increasingly US Jews are becoming aware that to uncritically accept the ongoing oppression of the Palestinians by Israel is a denial of their own Judaism, and furthermore, they are willing to engage in non violent protest and some even risk arrest to make their point.

    If Not Now, When? Young Jews Refuse to Stay Silent on the Occupation This Passover
    By Sammy Sass, Truthout | Op-Ed

    This Pesach (Passover), young Jews across the United States under the banner of IfNotNow are calling for a sea change in American Jewish consciousness and an end to American Jewish support for the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land. On April 19, I stood with 100 young American Jews in the office lobby of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) to say we support freedom and dignity for all Palestinians and Israelis. This week, in New York, Boston, Washington, DC, Chicago and San Francisco, hundreds of young American Jews are holding ritual protests and getting arrested to say we have had enough. I feel the yearning of a generation to tell a new story of what it means to be Jewish.

    [IfNotNow holds a ritual seder outside AIPAC with a hundred people in attendance. (Photo: Sam Boaz)] (pic in source article)

    Standing with this community, I feel a call to end my own silence. I used to think of myself as brave, speaking what is tacitly left unsaid, writing poetry about queerness and anger, war and assimilation. But as I’ve grown into adulthood I’ve felt the corners of my jaw ache as I keep my mouth shut to stop the words of dignity and occupation rising in my throat from pouring out. And it has been painful.

    I am surprised, but more to the point, I am disturbed. How did my voice dim and my jaw tighten and my hands begin to hesitate? These lessons in silence are learned; and most devastatingly, I learned them from the place that once taught me to know myself by the power of my own voice: Judaism.

    snip

    Some American Jewish leaders say that those of us who have walked away from the institutions that raised us have betrayed Judaism. I say that these institutions have betrayed us. They have taught us bravery and then asked for silence in return.

    http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/35759-if-not-now-when-young-jews-refuse-to-stay-silent-on-the-occupation-this-passover

  • Tony_0pmoc

    The closest I’ve been to Israel is The Sinai – Sharm-el-Sheikh in theory now back in Egypt…but it sure as hell felt like I was in Israel to me…

    The diving and snorkelling there is completely Brilliant – different and in some ways even better than some of the snorkelling and diving in The Maldives…

    Its probably even better now, cos there are no Fat American or Russian Tourists there destroying the coral with their guts and flippers.

    My lad said – even Tunisia was pretty good at the same time as We were bombing Libya to hell.

    So this war of terror on humans is pretty good for the coral – and the fish have learnt how to avoid the nets.

    Fish are incredibly tribal – and they protect their home where they live.

    Tony

    • Paul Barbara

      Ah, Sharm-el-Sheikh, just off of which the Israelis attacked the USS Liberty in the 1967 ‘Six-Day War’ – by ‘accident’, of course.
      Seeing as how you have mentioned previously about how you love to read (and all manner of other stuff), I’d like to recommend ‘Operation Cyanide’, by Peter Hounam (a great campaigner for Mordechai Vanunu).
      A good taster to it’s contents would be to watch ‘Dead in the Water’:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjOH1XMAwZA
      If the majority of US citizens were aware of this, it would be no more Mr. Nice Guy; end of aid, arms and diplomatic support for Israel, and a purge of the US Establishment.
      Hyperbole? I don’t think so; but no, I ain’t expecting it to happen, unfortunately.

  • BrianFujisan

    Stopwar. org Had a good piece on this subject today

    ” Guilt by association is a common form of scapegoating. The US writer Lillian Hellman described McCarthyism, which demanded to know are you or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party, as ‘scoundrel time’. Anyone remotely associated with the Communist Party, or connected to anyone so associated, was scapegoated and hounded, sometimes forced out of jobs and into exile.

    A similar process is now going on with Muslims who are told that they have to retract, disavow and deny contacts with ‘extremists’ (a term extremely widely defined) rather than being judged on their own politics.

    That Khan, who has made plenty of compromises with the status quo and who projects himself as a ‘moderate’, defending the City of London and distancing himself from Jeremy Corbyn, is under such attack tells you how insidious this process is….

    http://www.stopwar.org.uk/index.php/news-comment/1922-scoundrel-time-hounding-of-muslims-must-end

    • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

      Good link, Brian.

      If you want a good example of a most unscrupulous provocateur, just think of Roy Cohn trying to limit Ethel Rosenberg’s role,at best,to a dutiful typist, only to claiming that she was the conspiring Jewish traitor who led the most scapegoated group of spies in the hope of getting her husband to confess..

  • RobG

    I usually stay out of threads like this, because when I read them I despair even more of humanity.

    Forget whether you’re Jewish, Muslim, Christian (which all stem from the same ‘faith’), or whether you believe that lizard creatures control the universe. It matters not a jot in the great scheme of things.

    We are all human beings, feeble and primitive creatures living on a tiny blue planet, in a small solar system that’s part of a remote arm of the Milky Way, which is just one galaxy amongst trillions that makes up the Cosmos.

    We are nothing; by comparison just one grain of sand amongst all the grains of sand in the beaches and the deserts in our present existence.

    If/when the human race destroy themselves and the planet Earth, no one in the wider universe will take a blind bit of notice.

    The hubris of humanity is breathtaking beyond belief.

  • Republicofscotland

    Thinking of the conundrum, that is Israel and Palestine, and how a mutual, peaceful and fruitful coexistence can be found. It would, in my opinion appear that America, is the most significant stumbling block in the twisting road to peace and coexistence.

    It has mainly been Israel and Saudi Arabia, who have projected aggression in the region, in recent years, though that’s not to say other Middle Eastern nations haven’t contributed the blood shedding in the region. However, Israel in particular has the US, and a extremely generous funding programme to bolster its position.

    So why is the US, openly calling for peace between Israeli’s and Palestinians, and a de-escalation of violence in the region. Yet covertly pushing the complete opposite agenda.

    One of the possible answers could be down to rich US presidential funders, who pay for the campaigns, and in my opinion, have a profound affect on US Foreign policy. Those funders, and politicians have the interests of Israel at heart, possible even above, American citizens, with a view to pushing for control of the region, at the expense of other including the Palestinians.

    I’d also imagine to a lesser extent, that, they are well placed campaign funders and politicians within Westminster, who take a similar view, as to that, of their American counterparts.

    • Paul Barbara

      I saw an old clip on TV years back, of Moshe Dayan being asked if he thought there was a chance Jews and Muslims (or Palestinians) would ever live in peace (I think the footage was from the late ’40’s; Dayan was in Khaki shorts, next to a jeep; he already had the eye-patch). Dayan answered ‘No, because we have stolen (or ‘taken’) their land’.

      • Herbie

        Yup.

        The earlier leaders of Israel were much more honest, although that is creeping back in again with the younger generation, much to the annoyance of their Western “liberal” friends.

        He also said something about Palestinians, that they could live like dogs or leave.

        Some choice quotes from Meir, Ben Gurion as well.

        And they’re supposed to be the goodies.

  • The Hook

    Antisemitism purges are not hysteria at all. No sophisticated member of the public takes them seriously. Unsophisticated UK citizens do not give a toss.

    The original witch-hunts were centrally-directed repressive programs. McCarthy’s red scare was a centrally-directed repressive program (against rule-of-law internationalists rather than communists.)

    Labour’s ‘antisemitism’ frenzy is the same. It’s a last-ditch defense of a disintegrating state against the strongest case to be made for rule of law: that the Israeli state and its complicit British agents are hostis humani generis and the gravest threat to peace.

    This feckless stab at Zionist repression is built on deadpan laugh lines from Likudniks without a legal leg to stand on, such as, ‘Any challenge to the morality of the IDF is outrageous,’ from Netanyahu. A US Jew is challenging that dogma within a state-sanctioned party campaign. America’s Zionist genocidaires have fled the GOP to find a new home. Israeli state impunity is running out. Their color revolution is in train.

  • John Goss

    “Anon 1 – it was me in response to Mr Goss telling us that anti-Semitism wasn’t a problem – perhaps I should Have linked to one of his old posts instead.”

    Resident Dissident, you are no better than your right-wing Tory friends, Offord, Grayling et al. At least they quoted actual words written but you have, not for the first time, tried to ascribe a point of view to me I do not hold. But then your history for this kind of thing has already indelibly blotted your copybook beyond redemption.

    I challenge you to find an anti-Israeli link of mine. I am proud of many Jewish visionaries, Einstein, Marx, Aaron Russo, Jesus and others who never had a racist or bigotted bone in their bodies. I despise Zionists and their supporters.

    • Resident Dissident

      Yawn – Offord and grayling are no friends of mine. I quoted the actual words written in the post the mods deleted. I think I could find quite a lot of anti Israeli links – I think you meant Jewish – and I could find plenty of anti Jewish ones – but we cannot refer to the Jewsih family concerned or the other nastier things on the linked pages.

      I think you will find Marx said quite a lot of racist and bigoted things https://www.worldsocialism.org/canada/marx.and.antisemitism.1960.v27n214.htm

      • John Goss

        Yes, well Marx became an atheist, but despite your link, which I scan read, it needs to be borne in mind that the modern distinction between Zionism (those who would move mountains to sit on the poor for their own gains) and Jewish people (for whom I have great respect) was not available to Marx, and being ensconced in London was subject to the derogatory parlance of ‘Jews’ and ‘Niggers’ that imperialism had brought to the ‘New Jerusalem’. His battle was against the imperialists and capitalists who had exploited Nigerians (from where the word Nigger is probably derived) and other Africans, together with the poor of England and elsewhere. He was not perfect and it was long before the world of race, gender and other equalities.

        • John Goss

          To concrete the chronological point today is the quadcentennial anniversary of the death of our greatest bard. Usury was the plot of The Merchant of Venice. Shakespeare may have valued a word better-suited to usury than Jew, but that I don’t know. There have been a good few pounds of flesh taken in Palestine without any legal right. We need more lawyers like Portia to bring an end to the carnage.

          “PORTIA
          Therefore prepare thee to cut off the flesh.
          Shed thou no blood, nor cut thou less nor more
          But just a pound of flesh. If thou takest more
          Or less than a just pound, be it but so much
          As makes it light or heavy in the substance
          Or the division of the twentieth part
          Of one poor scruple—nay, if the scale do turn
          But in the estimation of a hair,
          Thou diest and all thy goods are confiscate.”

        • Resident Dissident

          So Marx did have racist and bigoted bones in his bodies – even if that was the norm for the time. There are quite a lot of Zionists who believe in the State of Israel who do not support the excesses of the Israeli State – there are also a lot of Jews who interpret their religion as being their Promised land to which they are entitled. It is also the case that a lot of the founders of modern day Zionism were good socialists, and were supported by most other good socialists at the time, especially as they saw what had happened during the Holocaust and the Russian pogroms so long before that. I am afraid things are no where near as simple and straightforward as you and your friends like to make out. A majority of modern day Israelis are Mizrahi who have left from Moslem countries very often having been driven out by official and unofficial bigotry against which I have never heard a whisper on your part and a denial that there is a problem with anti-Semitism.

          Just to counter your chronological point – it is worth noting that although Dickens, like Shakespeare, indulged in some then customary anti-Semitism with Fagin he did later on show a good deal of remorse by creating the character of Riah in Our Mutual Friend – so atonement has been possible for quite a long time. Our Mutual Friend was published in 1864 while Marx was living in London.

      • John Goss

        As to the distinction between Israeli and Jewish I have no problem with Jewish (worldwide) or Israeli (located in Israel) people if they are not bigots, warmongers or land-stealers. The State of Israel is a bigoted, warmongering, land-stealing, Zionist entity.

        Your comment did imply that I was anti-Jewish, and I am no psychic, so what appeared in a comment I did not read could hardly be applied to me or my beliefs.

        As your response is one of the more polite responses, for which I thank you, you are probably right that I should have said anti-Jewish.

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