Smantha Lishak on the Durban Review Conference

Samantha Lishak, second from the right

Samantha Lishak, second from the right

This piece is written by Samantha Lishak, Chair of Leeds University UJS

This week, one week after returning from the facade that was Durban II, has been a week of reflection for me. I have spent a lot of time thinking about what went on at that conference, and when people ask me “how was Geneva?” I’m never certain how to respond. How to explain what I went through at Durban II… According to my previous notes people had gathered that I’d gotten rather rageous, and been struck with dissapointment, at the United Nations. The truth is that there was so much emotion flying about that it was sometimes difficult to identify what I was actually feeling.

It is fair to say that Durban II was tainted from the start. The moment President Ahmadinejad was allowed to give the opening address to the UN, months after hosting a Holocaust Denial Conference, there was no way the conference could be seen as a legitimate conference against racism. Ahmadinejad’s racist, antisemitic speech overshadowed the entire week. Beyond his hateful words, what affected me was the repercussions of them. Speaking to NGO’s, I was told that actually Ahmadinejad’s speech was factually correct, that there is a force that controls the world. I was offered the chance to ‘admit’ the War in Iraq was my fault. I was offered the chance to explain how I controlled the media. I personally. I, because I am a Jew.

Never have I been more disheartened with the state of global affairs than after returning from Durban II. I went to Geneva with the naive hope of being able to “make a difference” by participating in a conference ‘against racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerances’. As a Jewish Student, human rights issues are of utmost significance, and it is frustrating that human rights abuses across the world are being absolutely ignored; Abuses in Darfur, Sri Lanka, India, to name a tiny few, were finally going to be given the opportunity to speak to the world, at this conference. NGO’s had come from all over the world, many of whom had spent 8 years waiting to afford to come to Europe, to present their plea to the United Nations that their suffering be recognised, and be offer helped. The Jewish student delegations from across the world arranged a rally with Darfuri people against the silence of the UN with issues in Darfur. I learnt so much from that rally. I learnt more about the politics of the Sudan, and most importantly the personal experiences of Darfuri people. Experiences that were inexcusably not heard in the UN General Assembly.

One week later, having celebrated 61 years of Israel’s independence in Leeds on Yom Ha’atzamut, remembered fallen Israeli soldiers on Israel’s Remembrance Day – Yom Ha’zikaron, and having been asked again, by a student, if I thought the um, the um, ‘Israeli’s’ controlled the global media and were using Gilad Shalit as a means of deflection, I am still ‘getting over’ the conference. I am continually asked “how was it?”, and every time I give a different response. Every time another story. Some beaming with joy, such as the clown who threw a nose at Ahmadinejad in the circus we call the UN, some with sadness, such as Tibet being thrown off the podium due to China’s objections to their speech, some with concern, such as the last NGO I heard speak claim that 9/11 was an unsolved mysery that didn’t happen, and that his organization were starting a lobby to remove the word antisemitism from the Oxford English Dictionary as it is clearly racist, and so many more stories and emotions in between.

I’d thought by now I would be able to give a calm response to the question “how was Geneva?” but I guess it will take more time for my blood not to boil when I think about Durban II, the farce it was, and the tragic neglect of what is so urgent to talk about.

This piece is written by Samantha Lishak, Chair of Leeds University UJS

43 Responses to “Smantha Lishak on the Durban Review Conference”

  1. Bill Says:

    “How was Geneva?” is the new “But what did you think of the play, Mrs Lincoln?”.

    “Speaking to NGO’s, I was told that actually Ahmadinejad’s speech was factually correct, that there is a force that controls the world. I was offered the chance to ‘admit’ the War in Iraq was my fault. I was offered the chance to explain how I controlled the media. I personally. I, because I am a Jew.”

    I’m sure we’re going to hear apologists say this is Israel’s fault — not that of the enabled anti-Semites in her midst. And especially those who sit quietly by and do nothing when example after example is brought to the forefront.

  2. Gil Says:

    ‘…such as the last NGO I heard speak claim that 9/11 was an unsolved mysery that didn’t happen, and that his organization were starting a lobby to remove the word antisemitism from the Oxford English Dictionary as it is clearly racist…’

    Absolutely shocking. And even more so when you read that the NGO is mentioned is Canadian:

    Talk about the Red-Brown-Green alliance…

  3. David Says:

    It might be nice to have just a tiny morsel of the power that people believe that we have in this world – maybe not. But believe it they certainly do. That is why they deny the Holocaust because we were powerless to stop it. It points more to the failings of their eductation as well as that of their governments that they actually believe this rubbish. You and your colleagues did a great job in Geneva. Keep on shouting!!

  4. modernityblog Says:

    “I was told that actually Ahmadinejad’s speech was factually correct,”

    I had a similar encounter with a Green on that topic, see

  5. JJfp watch Says:

    JJfp are pushing the “Jewish conspiracy theory” as well,

    Apparently, the Jews lobbied on Durban II (considering the racism of Durban I quite rightly). No doubt they did.

    But for Kuper more was at play. The “Jewish Lobby” is, however, endowed with a super power that they succeeded in forcing some of the most powerful countries (including Germany) in the world to follow their will.

    God forbid that the thought ever occurred to the libel-pushing Kuper that, many, just maybe, Germany and the 17 other countries oppose antisemitism; that the sights and stink of Durban I was unacceptable even to western capitalist states that, they too, oppose antisemitism. Not at all. Just because those governments are not as prone to antisemitic thinking as Kuper, he can only believe that their hand was forced by a malevolent and absolute power.

    So, for JJfp Ahmadinejad was speaking truth to power.

    This is what Richard Kuper who speaks “as a Jew” believes.

    This is what Kuper and jjfp think is “legitimate criticism of Israel”.

    This is what Richard Kuper and jjfp feels is right to use classic antisemitic propaganda tp push his agenda

    Richard Kuper and jjfp think antisemitism is a legitimate tool with which to beat Israel and those who dare raise the question of antisemitism.

    Richard Kuper is pushing the same line as the BNP.

    Richard Kuper cannot believe that civilised countries oppose antisemitism as a principle.

    And because he cannot believe that those countries oppose antisemitism he, like so many disreputable characters before him, can only fall back on anti-Jewish libels for an explanation.

    What next, Richard, a discussion that Zionism created swine flu? If not, why not? SInce you believe Jews have the power to determine the outcome of international bodies and domestic governments, a little bit of N1HI would be a piece of pie.

    Is this what Jewish “progressives” have been reduced to; pushing the canards of 150 years of antisemitic thinking.

  6. JJfp watch Says:

    To make it clear. Kuper is agreeing with those in the article who call (legitimate) lobbying when done by Jews “blatantly dishonest”; and who call lobbyists against antisemitism and demonisation of Israel as “Zionist agitators” and that “The Zionists here are making people hate Jews”.

    • Bill Says:

      This is one of those things that drives me nuts. People who hate Jews don’t need the Lobby to get their juices flowing. If it wasn’t for the Lobby there would be another excuse that would be just as good, and just as de-legitimizing. It’s no different than the people who are relieved now that Israel has N&L at the top so that they can now “stop” holding back their restraint in criticizing Israel when they never really held back. They now have their “proof,” as we saw on another thread, of all the prejudices they held before hand.

  7. jjfp watch Says:

    How about this Richard……………..fits in nicely from the artilce you cite,
    “A staffer from a major nongovernmental organization said there was just one reason why a European country like Germany would help draft the conference’s resolution on the Friday before the conference, only to decide to boycott it that very weekend.

    “The Jewish lobby,” said the staffer, who refused to be identified by name or organization.

    “What I’m afraid of is if you put that in my mouth, it will sound like a conspiracy theory, and then readers will say we’re anti-Semitic,” said the staffer.”

    (note the Livingstone Formulation)

    Today NATO expelled four Russian “spies” putting the US in a difficult position.

    It is clear what has happened. The US is no longer towing the Zionist line. So, instead, they turned their influence to NATO and made NATO to do something to make Obama feel awkward and get them to to do the Zionists bidding.

    I mean what other possible explanation can there be? There can be ” one reason”only ?

    As I noted, you seem to think they have the power to influence/determine government policy so, why not NATO?

    How do you separate this from what the NGO staffer and others talked about the power of the Jewish lobby and Durban II? After all, this is just as “credible”, is it not?

    And here is some support for the argument………..

    “But the political scene is dismal, despite the overwhelming unpopularity of US-NATO/Israeli wars, as governments continue to bow to Zionist pressures — both internal and external.” From Al Ahram (Egypt)

    “The lives, properties and rights of the people of Georgia and Ossetia and Abkhazia are victims of the tendencies and provocations of NATO and certain western powers, and the underhanded actions of the Zionists.” Ahmanijahad (in Geneva – so the Jewish conspiracy was real successful eh Richard?)

    “the Zionist-controlled NATO”

    So, Richard, we are waiting……….

  8. toby esterhase Says:

    Richard Kuper is playing with Jewish conspiracy, legitimizing the use of the trope and further eroding the ability of antiracists who take him seriously to recongize antisemitism.

    He doesn’t know anything, evidently, about what happened at Durban, about the discussions which went on in the years leading up to the review conference, or what happened at Geneva.

    He thinks that this was a bona fide antiracist movement which was sabotaged by a Jewish conspiracy.

    Richard Kuper couldn’t sniff antisemitism if it slapped him round the face. And one day it will.

  9. modernityblog Says:

    Anyone got any evidence of Richard Kuper’s thinking?

    Please can you post a link to his comments? I didn’t see one.

  10. modernityblog Says:

    Thanks Toby,

    Reading those links I was struck by the thought, how interesting it is that Richard Kuper doesn’t give us his own opinion, rather he chooses to push things indirectly via the words of others, which is an old political trick, he should know better.

  11. Bill Says:

    I see they’re calling for a trollfest over here as well..

    I for one am waiting for people to show which card carrying member of the ZOG, which Elder of the Protocols, which we-don’t-even-have-a-name-for-it-cause-they’re-so-damn-powerful-and-secret-but-you-KNOW-they’re-out-there wrote Ahmadinejad’s speech, invited him in the first place, choreographed the meeting Lishak had with the NGOs who insisted she herself was in control of the media, and all the rest of the stupidity.

    No doubt someone’s out there surfing the net to find the Microsoft Project 2007 file (come on, you know there’s only one group in the world that could write software that evil) that has all the Gantt charts and task/resource assignments of the conspiracy that scuttled Durban 2.0.

    It must have been a cushy job to be a member of the great anti-Durban conspiracy (except for the project manager’s secretary) since everyone just has to sit back and watch the worlds antisemites, and of course, their enablers do their job for them.

  12. Saul Says:

    From the article,

    “This time, however, the Jews actually did conspire, albeit openly, to sabotage the conference.”

    Erm, so using the definition of “conspiracy”, this was no conspiracy but rather open discussions with various government and other bodies.

    Kuper seems to miss Jordan’s irony which forms the context of the comments of the conspiracy nuts later on which he implies he agrees with. He also misses the irony of what it was that was being “sabotaged” – the nasty, vindictive antisemitism of Durban I and which is evidenced in the conspiracy nut’s comments.

    So, the question for Kuper is what was it that Jewish groups did was so “dishonest”. WHat is the evidence, not of lobbying, but of the underhand, dishonest way it was done that is so allegedly clear?
    Let us see the evidence about the Jews forcing Germany’s hand?

    Evidence is always the sticking point for conspiracy fantasy.

    But, of course, the question of evidence will be seen as an irrelevant question since it is not necessary for what “everyone knows”, just as “everyone knows” Jews control the press, just as “everyone knows” Jews started the war in Iraq; just as “everyone knows”, Jews were forcing the US to attack Iran, just as “everyone knows” Jews spread swine flu and control NATO.

    Anti-racists and anti-antisemites, as well as those serious about a solution to the conflict in the Middle East, owe a debt of gratitude to those lobbying to ensure that the antisemitism and demonization of Durban I was not repeated. Instead, they are rewarded with antisemitic slurs from someone who claims to speak in the name of “Jews”.

  13. Siggy Says:

    The fact that jjfp put up the post indicates just how little they know.

    Kuper seems to think that what the Lobby [sic] sabotaged was a form in which a legitimate debate about racism was to have taken place, rather than a free-for-all for “progressives” antisemitism.

    Where has he been??

  14. Jonathan Hoffman Says:

    Welcome to the world, Samantha.

    I’m only sorry my generation let it get like that.

  15. Ron Says:

    Kuper was in charge at Pluto Press when they refused to publish Steve Cohen’s book on left antisemitism.

    He was a speaker at the same meeting where Jenny Tonge did her infamous protocols accusation of zionist control of finance. He never objected

    Kuper never took up Malchi’s offer to debate him (Malachi was a Board of Deps deputy).
    But even with all Kuper’s form I didn’t think he would stoop so low as he has done on Just Peace.

  16. Absolutely Observer Says:

    So, from Kuper’s perspective, the only true hero of Geneva is Ahamijehad. Not only was he the only party not to be silenced, stiffled and shut down by the all-powerful “Jewish lobby”, but was the only one who spoke the “truth” when talking about Jewish “penetration” of governments, media, etc..

    Interesting how this notion of conspiracy is also one that IJV spouts when trying to account for their inability to be taken seriously by the majority of Jews in the UK.

    I mean, what better way to convince Jews to come join them than by the repetition of antisemitic libels. If it weren’t for the evil BoD, I can see the queues forming now.

  17. Richard Kuper Says:

    The article in question, posted on the JfJfP website is introduced simply with the sentence: ‘This article, by Michael J Jordan, comes from the website of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, 28 April 2009.’ I made no comment on it.

    The link to it is given. It is

    Could I suggest that any complaints are taken up with the JTA.

    The JTA describes itself in these words: “JTA is the definitive, trusted global source of breaking news, investigative reporting, in-depth analysis, opinion and features on current events and issues of interest to the Jewish people. An unaffiliated not-for-profit organization, we pride ourselves on our independence and integrity.”

    It has a Board of Dirctors which it describes in these terms: “JTA is governed by an independent, volunteer Board of Directors that numbers a maximum of 75 members. The Directors, who are elected for three-year terms, are drawn from communities throughout North America, as well as Israel, Europe and other international localities. Every effort is made to keep the Board as diverse as possible and broadly representative of the Jewish community. Among the many constituencies represented on the Board are the Jewish newspaper publishing industry, the Jewish federation establishment, the Zionist movement, and leaders in the media and Internet industries.”

    They clearly have a lot to answer for…

  18. Stephen Marks Says:

    About two hours ago I wrote the following draft;

    ‘Congratulations on satirising yourselves better than any of your critics could have done. You seem not to have noticed that the article which Richard Kuper cited and which you denounce so hysterically as ‘antisemitic’ was actually published by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency – the official news agency of the Zionist movement’.

    I should have posted it then but I am afraid to say I could not resist holding off to see how long it would take any of you lot to realise what fools you had made of yourselves.

    Richard however, as he has every right to do, has decided to put you out of your misery. I suppose you will find some way to argue yourselves out of the hole you have dug for yourselves. I suppose an apology to Richard is too much to ask for…

  19. Toby Esterhase Says:

    So what was your motivation for putting this piece on the website of JFJFP Richard?

    What did you want us readers of your site to gain from reading this article?

    What is your view Richard?

    Do you think that the Durban conference and the Durban review process was a serious attempt to address racism?

    Did you think that the Zionism=Racism obsession detracted from the central mission?

    Did you think that the huge and shocking Jew-hatred which occurred at the Durban conference in 2001 was significant?

    How did you think antiracist activists should have prepared for the Durban Review Conference cognisant of the threat of antisemitism?

    How should antiracists have responded to the invitation of a genocidal and state-empowered Jew-hater to give a keynote speech?

    I’m not very interested in what the JTA has to say. It is some mainstream Jewish organisation from America, is it not?

    I am interested in what JFJFP has to say – because I am on the left, I am British, and I am for Justice for Palestinians, I am Jewish, and I am worried about antisemitism.

    I want to know why JFJFP posted this Jewish Conspiracy piece on its website.

    I want to know whether JFJFP thinks that the Jewish and antiracist groups who went to Geneva to oppose antisemitism were wrong.

    I want to know what JFJFP, as an NGO, did to oppose antisemitism in the Durban process.

    I want to know if JFJFP thinks the best way to oppose antisemitism is to fight against Zionism – or the excesses Israel.

  20. Toby Esterhase Says:

    But why past this article on the JFJFP website, without comment?

    Is it because you thought it was a good article which expressed some important political truth?

    Is it because you thought that it was an interesting article because it seemed to be an – “out of their own mouths” confession by the American/Jewish right – the lobby admits to being a Jewish conspiracy?

    Or is it because you thought it was an antisemitic article produced by an idiot right-winger in America and anybody with any political sense would understand how damaging it was?

    Or is it because you think that if some right wing American is talking about the Jewish conspiracy then this legitimates such talk for antiracists?

    Do you agree with the concluding remarks from Malaak Shabazz, who seems to think that “Zionists” conspired to de-legitimize an important conference against racism:

    “The Zionists here are making people hate Jews,” Shabazz said. “I was unfamiliar with the tactics of Zionists. But I got a crash course on it here.”

    I think JFJFP – Kuper and Marks – have absolutely no understanding of any of this.

  21. Siggy Says:

    Stephen Marks,

    Forgive us taking seriously Kuper’s pushing of conspiracy theory, but he does have form on this type of thing.

    In response a while ago to a post on Walt and Mearsheimer, Kuper demanded that we have a “rational discussion” on the fantasy that Jews determine US foreign policy.

    As Ron pointed out, Kuper kept quiet when sharing a platform with an MP espousing the same antisemitic libel.

    The essence of irony is to reverse the meaning of something. Kuper’s “irony” of posting a conspiracy theory is lost since it is something he not only appears to believe but also stays silent about when confronted with it.

    Rather than presenting a “satire” of Kuper’s views, it appears as quite an accurate representation.

    And your comment about not resisting “making fools” of those opposing antisemitism whilst your leading lights propogate it and remain silent in the face of it isn’t very impressive.

  22. Saul Says:

    Stephen Marks,
    One of the lines pushed by members of jjfp, jsg and IJV is that the “Jewish establishment” silences Jews wanting to criticise Israel. Pushing conspiracy theory about the alleged power of Zionists is part of your general output. That is why your argument about “satire” is really not very convincing and, as anyone can tell, a rather poor “save”.

    But, glad to know your having some fun at the expense of those concerned about contemporary hostility to Jews. Good for you to know who your “real” enemies are.

    Sure it will play well with the constituency who won’t go near you with a bargepole. How about this slogan to the mainstream Jews whose support and recognition you crave.

    “Come join us – we take the piss out of you like no-one else does”

  23. Saul Says:

    Here is jjfp posting on Freeman’s conspiracy thinking.
    Maybe that too was ironic?

    • Bill Says:

      And of course it’s all about The Lobby. Not a word about The Memo — the dumbest statement from someone aspiring to the Office of Stupid since James Watt uttered the career ending “…a Woman, a Black, two Jews and a Cripple” (maybe the Lobby, rather than Jerry’s Kids, had something to do with that too!). No matter how much he blames the lobby, Freeman will be known for the guy who said it was super-dooper for the army, be it Chinese or US with his explicit examples, to plow under peaceful, articulate and justifiably-miffed protesters embarrassing the sitting government in its capitol. Boy! Lucky he wasn’t at the job when MLK had a dream!

      But of course, it’s so much easier to blame a Jew. Or better still a whole Lobby of them.

  24. Saul Says:

    This link appears under jjfp’s headline,
    “The Israel lobby – who got Charles Freeman?”

    The satire “save” is dissolving as we speak……………

  25. Shachtman Says:

    Amazing that JFJFP spoke at a fundraising dinner for MPAC earlier this year. Is this satire as well ?

  26. Saul Says:

    And, if one goes to the JJFP webpage, one will find amongst the links on the left hand of the page a series of topics on their website. Just under “impunity” is one titled “Israel Lobby”.

  27. Saul Says:

    Oh, and clink on the link “antisemitism” on JJFP’s page and you come across this headline,
    “Jewish Canadians Concerned About Suppression of Criticism of Israel”

    og and this one is good too “”

  28. modernityblog Says:

    Richard Kuper,

    please, so that no one can misconstrue your meaning, please could you give us your view of Ahmadinejad?

    Do you think it is right that Ahmadinejad, who organised a Holocaust denial conference and invited neo-Nazis to Tehran, was given the right to address a conference on anti-racism?

    Do you agree with that decision?

    Please, feel free to give us your views, go on be bold, debate your views, if you can 🙂

  29. Siggy Says:

    “No racism is justifiable, of any kind.

    We have to deal with it when it occurs and cannot avoid the fact that anti Semitism – classical prejudice against Jews as Jews – both exists and is on the increase. But we have to be wary of it being used as a way of silencing debate and spreading fear. The story in The Sun recently about targeting British Jews for attack as revenge for Gaza demonstrates how cynically people use the accusation, but it does exist.

    JfJfP has been especially impressed with the attitude we have found on demonstrations in support of the Gazan people where people have welcomed us, asked to be photographed with us, stand and march with us. We have been impressed with the emails we have received from British Muslims, stating they have no issue with an Israel within the 1967 borders and praising the stand we take.

    Anti-semitism is bad in and of itself, but it also plays into the hands of our critics. There was no place for Islamophobia after 9/11 or 7/7. Unjustifiable as it was, it grew and has produced the situation we are in now, with suspicion and fear greatly increased.”

    jjfp at MPAC,

    “We have to deal with it when it occurs and cannot avoid the fact that anti Semitism – classical prejudice against Jews as Jews – both exists and is on the increase.”

    Do tell us why…….do tell us from where it is coming from…..

    note also,

    “But we have to be wary of it being used as a way of silencing debate and spreading fear.”

    Used by whom and when? Do tell us

    • Bill Says:

      jjfp at MPAC,

      “We have to deal with it when it occurs and cannot avoid the fact that anti Semitism – classical prejudice against Jews as Jews – both exists and is on the increase.”

      Do tell us why…….do tell us from where it is coming from…..

      That statement above sounds sorta like the “ceremonial” sensitivity to racism/sexism/etc where you say in a one-sentence blowoff, “we must be sensitive to ‘it,'” but little is discussed on where the boundaries are, not even a discussion of the Reasonable Person Threshold, or the formal legal definitions of H&D, and hypothetical examples of seemingly “normal” things that will get your company’s tail sued.. There’s always something more important to talk about and everyone is expected to follow common sense so it’s all cool…

      UNTIL someone gets busted with a hoochie-mama screen saver, does a really tasteless racist parody gets the performer’s nose moved to the other side of his face, or someone leaves for a “better offer” across town but rumor has it there he/she got a really good exit package that nobody’s supposed to talk about.

      And everyone says, “gee we didn’t expect that to happen.” But it practically guaranteed. But they sure were sensitivie to racism, sexism, antisemitism and the whole range of new retirement bennies…

      Don’t believe it? Then why did someone on the UCU moderated Activist list link to David Duke.Com? Why did a bocyotteer have links to a holocaust deniers on her page? Why did a UCUer argue that they should boycott only Israel because, you know… Jews are smart and are more likely to go to college. How could any of that happen when they were clearly “aware” of racism and antisemitism.

  30. W.H. Smith Says:

    Stephen Marks said :

    “I should have posted it then but I am afraid to say I could not resist holding off to see how long it would take any of you lot to realise what fools you had made of yourselves”

    Sounds a bit like “it’s not my dirty magazine mummy – I’m just minding it for a friend.

  31. emabarassing stains Says:

    So, jjfp thinks its fun to take the piss of anti-antisemites (although, I think we have all seen through that one). So, instead they spend their time making nice to groups with this on their website,

    “Is Britain’s Foreign Policy Being Dictated By The Pro-War Israel Lobby?”

    Tegenlicht, a documentary program by the Dutch (Couldn’t have been done here due to the Israel Lobby) public broadcast organization VPRO…………..(love the bit in parentheis)………..

    And this from a commeter called Kathy,
    “This shows the cancerous way that Zionists take control of governments such as America. It is not that America chose to become a friend of Israel but rather that the Zionists get themselves into powerful places and they gradually pull their power to Israel. By the time anyone realises, it is too late.

    I have no doubt that there are such people at work here in our country for sadly Zionism is a cancer for which there is no cure, it spreads with its greed for power and Israel is at its heart.”

    To be fair, I did look to see if RK intervened in this discussion, but not a squeak, as meek as a mouse. Look like the cat had got his Tonge.

    Looks like MPAC and jjfp have a great relationship………….
    One serves up shit and the other makes it fit for human consumption.

    Good on you Richard, you’re doing a great job!

    [Needless to say, MPAC and the views expressed in that post and its comments (whose site this gem came from (under the heading “Israel Lobby Exposed”) are as representative of British Muslisms as JJFP is of British Jewry…………..]

    allows several interesting opinion makers to speak on the future of the American and Israel relationship and the reception of John Mearsheimer’s and Steve Walt’s controversial article. The Israel Lobby and US foreign policy. Among others John Mearsheimer, former chief of staff to United States Secretary of State Colin Powell Lawrence Wilkerson, cofounder of the “Christians United for Israel” lobbying group John Hagee, neoconservative Richard Perle and historian Tony Judt express their views in Marije Meerman’s and William de Bruijn’s documentary.

  32. emabarassing stains Says:

    the final paragaph should be inverted commas……… the word “allows”……………….
    Gee, the Lobby is useless at its job!

  33. zkharya Says:

    I must say, it seems to me, both Kuper and Marks were oblivious to the irony in Jordan’s piece.

    • Bill Says:

      I think they’re oblivious to antisemitism in the real world period.

      Their Lobby Obsession reminds me of internalized bigots harping over affirmative action wen neither the Lobby or AA/EO don’t play “the role” to which they fantasize in policy or hiring/promotion. But they’re great to have around when you don’t get what you want so you have an excuse and something (and someone) to blame… And all the while, it creates undercurrents of resentment that eventually spiral into genuine discrimination and harassment (read: racism and antisemitism). Indeed, if they were asked if obsession and resentment over affirmative action can lead up to racist acts in the workplace you know they’d say, overwhelmingly, “Yes, probably so!” Changing it to “The Lobby” and “antisemetic” and of course the response would be different. Because we all know the omnipotence of the lobby as opposed to the incompetence of the Durban organizers, the stupidity of Freeman, and the clever trick The Lobby did to fool us all when they let the AWAC sale to Saudi Arabia happen (my personal favorite).

  34. Siggy Says:


    Notice also that Kuper has refused to respond to Toby’s questions…………….but he has time to sanitise antisemitism for those willing to use it in their “legitimate criticism of Israel”.

    Does he really think that the fact he speaks “as a Jew” means he is protected against antisemitic ways of thinking………..those he speaks to think that; no doubt he does as well.

  35. Siggy Says:

    I read a review of David Aaronovitch’s new book on conspiracies in yesterday’s Guardian. I was (not) surprised to read that many in the States believed that the attack on Pearl Harbour was organised by the Jews to get the US into the war; just as the Lobby is no doubt forcing the US into war against Iran (whoops, that was before the Lobby managed to ensure Obama’s presidency!)

    No doubt, had Kuper been politically active then he would have said that, of course, that whilst antisemitism was on the ascendancy (it did increase in the US during WWII), “we have to be wary of it being used as a way of silencing debate and spreading fear”, which, as we know, was precisely the claim made by the antisemitic far-right in the US to stop that country’s entry into WWII

    I guess that is why that classic film on Pearl Harbour is titled, “Torah, Torah, Torah”.

  36. Siggy Says:

    Other posters have noted the following,

    Start with acknowledging antisemitism and how terrible it is……

    “No person with a sense of the dignity of mankind can condone the persecution of the Jewish race in Germany. But no person of honesty and vision can look on their pro-war policy here today without seeing the dangers involved in such a policy both for us and for them. Instead of agitating for war, the Jewish groups in this country should be opposing it in every possible way for they will be among the first to feel its consequences.”

    Move on then to show how it [is] being used as a way of silencing debate and spreading fear”,

    “A smear campaign was instituted against individuals who opposed intervention. The terms “fifth columnist,” “traitor,” “Nazi,” “anti-Semitic” were thrown ceaselessly at any one who dared to suggest that it was not to the best interests of the United States to enter the war. Men lost their jobs if they were frankly anti-war. Many others dared no longer speak.”

  37. NIMN Says:

    I am a Jew who supports justice for Palestinians………………I am a Jew who opposes antisemitism.

    How dare Kuper speak in my name.

  38. Inna Says:

    “How dare Kuper speak in my name.”

    As far as I’m concerned Kuper speaks for Kuper. Jews for Justice for Palestinians speak for no-one: not for Jews, not for Palestinians and certainly not for justice.



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