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Anti-Semitism and Criticism of Israel


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Initial post: Dec 1, 2012 10:22:41 AM PST
neonpisces says:
This post is prompted by another thread regarding a Jerusalem Post editorial that calls for an extreme position on Gaza that border on eliminationism.

In that thread, predictably, the charge of anti-Semitism has been made multple times against those who are advocating on behalf of the Palestinians in the occupied territory and in Gaza.

I see this as both a libel and a deflection away from the initial discussion.

So let's talk about it here. Is criticism of Israel inherently anti-Semitic?

Here's a starting point:

http://www.counterpunch.org/2003/12/30/criticism-of-israel-is-not-anti-semitism/

<snip>

We hold groups responsible for things, good and bad, all the time: The Germans started World War II, the French opposed us in Iraq, the British supported us. The strongly pro-Israel columnist Jonathan Rosenblum states, "The Jews have built an advanced, industrial state, while the Palestinians have built nothing."

Clearly, it is not just anti-Semites who attribute responsibility to the Jews. And just as clearly, this is neither racist nor to be taken literally. Rosenblum does not mean that every last Jew, including children and the mentally disabled, built that state. He means that most adult Jews made some contribution to it.

If so, should definitional inflation be allowed to make anti-Semites out of all those who hold Jews responsible for Israel's actions and character? My childhood, in largely Jewish suburbs of New York and Boston, was full of Israel bond drives and calls to support Israel. Can't Rosenblum say that "the Jews," meaning a substantial majority of adult Jews, have some responsibility for what Israel has become? And can't Amnesty International or Human Rights Watch say that Israel has committed war crimes and violated human rights?

One might justly call it dangerous to conclude that Jews, generally, had some responsibility for war crimes and human rights violations. But to call it anti-Semitic seems just as dangerous, because in some loose, though not unreasonable, sense, the conclusion is hard to escape. That's why there are whole Jewish organizations, like Not in My Name, that exist to enable Jews to dissociate themselves from Israel's actions.

In short, you can't have it both ways. You can, if you like, inflate the definition of "anti-Semitism" to capture even Jewish political opponents of Israel. But you can't do this and keep "anti-Semitism" as a term of intense moral condemnation. Nor will the inflationary gambit successfully isolate the truly reprehensible anti-Semites.

The best way to reserve "anti-Semitism" as a term of condemnation is to define it as hatred of Jews, not for what they do but for what they are.

<snip>

- Michael Neumann, "Criticism of Israel is Not Anti-Semitism", Counterpunch, 30-Dec-2003

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 10:31:06 AM PST
Some Jews and/or Israelis themselves don't like what the Israeli government does. You do not have to be an anti-Semite to dislike what goes on over there. Palestininans and Israelis both are to blame for the situation in that area.

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 11:00:12 AM PST
Ironic given how fast and furious the charge of "racism" is thrown around. Sauce for the goose.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 11:22:57 AM PST
Katrina says:
neonpisces says: "
So let's talk about it here. Is criticism of Israel inherently anti-Semitic?"
_________________________________________
It's 'politically correct' not to say anything bad about Israel or the 'Jews'. (the Holocaust, and all that)

Same as it's not 'politically correct' to say anything negative about 'blacks' in this Country. (the slave thing and all)

The 'anti-Semite/racist' epithet is too easily thrown out, which stifles most honest discussion. Jews and blacks can have 'honest' discussions amongst themselves,...outsiders are suspect.

Also, here in America, it's easy to identify with the 'european' jews as frontiersmen, against the 'dark skinned' (Indian Natives) Palestinians. We pushed the Native Tribes onto 'reservations', same as the Israelis are doing to the Palestinians. Hard to condemn your own culture/heritage,...even if it is wrong.

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 11:28:37 AM PST
Mickey Ryan says:
Same thing with calling people racist for criticizing Obama's bungling gang that couldn't shoot straight. Liberals are quick to call them racists and then cry when the table is flipped on them regarding Israel.

You guys set yourselves up for it. Suck it up and deal with it. Wipe those tears. Maybe you and the hard right can start a false-accusation-of-racism/anti-semitism support group together. This way you're actually useful for something for the very first time in your lives.

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 11:41:49 AM PST
DarthRad says:
Have to bring into the first page of this thread a point from the other thread: The internecine warfare of Jew on Jew hate has exploded, primarily in the form of right wing Jews spewing hate and venom on liberal Jews, and liberal Jews turning their backs on Israel and ignoring the whole issue as a result.

Key examples:

http://www.masada2000.org/list-A.html

Woody Allen as a Self-Hating Israel Threatening Jew?

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/04/24/the-crisis-of-zionism/

Krugman is a Nobel Prize winning economist. He isn't on masada2000.org's list, but may well be after that brief comment. The key excerpt:

The truth is that like many liberal American Jews - and most American Jews are still liberal - I basically avoid thinking about where Israel is going. It seems obvious from here that the narrow-minded policies of the current government are basically a gradual, long-run form of national suicide - and that's bad for Jews everywhere, not to mention the world. But I have other battles to fight, and to say anything to that effect is to bring yourself under intense attack from organized groups that try to make any criticism of Israeli policies tantamount to anti-Semitism.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 12:45:11 PM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Feb 25, 2013 5:23:32 AM PST]

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 12:53:30 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 1, 2012 12:59:29 PM PST
DarthRad says:
Diva,

Merry Christmas! Here's my gift for you, it will help:

Magic Brain Thinking Cap MTC1

Er ... except ... are you Jewish? I honestly can't tell, since you spew so much venom against other posters who are Jewish and criticize Israel.

Well, just in case, Happy Hanukkah! This is for you!

Hanukkah Coloring & Activity Book

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 1:38:08 PM PST
Zippy says:
In using the word 'Anti-semite', or 'Anti-semitic', or 'Anti-semticism' one must remember that Arabs are semites... and European jews (the demographic used in coining that word) are not...

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 1:49:06 PM PST
DarthRad says:
Diva,

Merry Christmas! Here's my gift for you, it will help:

Magic Brain Thinking Cap MTC1
____________

Hope it comes with clear instructions.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 2:03:47 PM PST
Oh, puh-leeze! Not that nonsense, again!

"Anti-Semite" has been used as a "term of art" from the beginning of its use. "Anti-Semite" has never meant discrimination against Middle Eastern Arabs.

Let's not bog ourselves down in absolutely unnecessary idiocy.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 2:05:26 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 1, 2012 2:06:34 PM PST
Why, Zippy, you are such a pedant....

I like it!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 2:12:33 PM PST
Zippy says:
cobaltspectre:

That word is based on a false racist doctrine that the nazis later embraced... and to use it in its popular, but false meaning is to support nazi ideology...
It's no different than calling a pencil a car, it's nonsensical and jibberish...

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 2:23:37 PM PST
You can't fight against the established meanings of words. "Gay," didn't always mean, exclusively, "homosexual." I still have a toy from when I was a toddler with the now strange-looking lettering on the sides reading, "GAY SCHOOL BUS." That toy company had to change its name.

You can protest all you like about what, "anti-Semite," means. But, all you're going to do is side-track genuine discussion in an effort to remove a word from use whose meaning is clear to everyone, and which only you wish to muddy, and look like a disruptive, officious jackass in the process.

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 2:51:54 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 1, 2012 2:53:25 PM PST
Zippy says:
cobaltspectre:
Quite the opposite...
This entire situation/problem/conflict is based on a false paradigm, propaganda, and mythology sold as factual history. So by stating what I stated; it's just a small example that the masses who are brainwashed by the television have no clue what they are talking about...

PS: 'Gay' wasn't a slang word for homosexuals until misinformed people started using as such...

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 3:03:00 PM PST
Katrina says:
Conclusion:
cobaltspectre is a Nazi.

(how's the discussion coming along, neonpisces?)

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 3:12:48 PM PST
Yo says:
Well look at this way. You've got folks like "Street Professor" (aka Sniffy), who are Holocaust deniers as well as Israel-bashers. So draw your own conclusions ...

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 3:15:43 PM PST
Katrina says:
And, neonpisces is a 'closet jew hater'.

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 3:16:46 PM PST
Katrina says:
(have we started talking about Israel yet?)

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 3:37:15 PM PST
"PS: 'Gay' wasn't a slang word for homosexuals until misinformed people started using as such..."

Cary Grant used, "gay," as, "homosexual," in, "Bringing up Baby," in 1938. When did the people start being, "misinformed?"

And, again, you're trying to fight the evolutionary progress of the English language. The meanings of words change over time. Some words have archaic meanings which no longer even make any sense to anyone, anymore.

Out of curiosity, what synonym-- if there is one-- do you prefer to, "anti-Semitism?"

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 3:59:22 PM PST
Katrina says:
I wonder if the 1967 Borders are cool with everybody?

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 4:02:36 PM PST
Zippy says:
cobaltspectre:
Again, Arabs are semites, that has not changed, and European Jews are not, that has not changed.

Wilhelm Marr (a racist) used a false, incorrect racist ideology as a basis for that word... just as the nazi ideology of 'Aryan' is false, there is no such thing as a European, white Aryan...

'Judophobia' is a more appropriate word...

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 4:09:11 PM PST
Katrina says:
Ummm, should Jerusalem be a Capitol,....or, should we just nuke it?

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2012 4:09:53 PM PST
"The irrational fear of Jews?" That replaces, "unreasoning hatred of Jews," to you?

To me, those are not synonyms, at all.

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 4:13:39 PM PST
Katrina says:
Maybe we should just let the Arabs and Israelis have at it with each other,...and winner take all?
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This discussion

Discussion in:  Politics forum
Participants:  45
Total posts:  1174
Initial post:  Dec 1, 2012
Latest post:  Feb 11, 2013

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