YIISA to close down

This piece, by David Burt, is from Yale News.

The Yale Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Anti-Semitism (YIISA), which has operated since 2006, will not continue next year, Director of the Institution for Social and Policy Studies Donald Green said in a statement.

The decision to end the program has met criticism from groups across the nation that show support for Jewish people, such as the American Jewish Committee and the Anti-Defamation League. But Green, a political science professor, said YIISA generated little scholarly work that earned publication in highly regarded journals, and its courses attracted few students.

“YIISA suffered the same fate as other initially promising programs… that were eventually terminated at ISPS because they failed to meet high standards for research and instruction,” Green said, citing the Center for the Study of Race, Inequality and Politics as another example of an underachieving program.

By contrast, he said, other ISPS programs, such as the Ethics, Politics and Economics major and the Interdisciplinary Bioethics Center, draw “hundreds” of students to their classes each year, and programs such as the Field Experiments Initiative has produced “an extraordinary number” of articles in “top-tier academic journals.”

But several leaders of organizations that stand up against anti-Semitism have issued statements condemning Yale’s decision to close the initiative. Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, said in a statement that Yale should have addressed the shortcomings of the program instead of ending it.

“If there were problems that the university raised, they needed to be dealt with and resolved,” he said. “The decision to end the Center was a bad one on its own terms, but it is even worse because it leaves the impression that the anti-Jewish forces in the world achieved a significant victory.”

David Harris, executive director of the American Jewish Committee, echoed Foxman’s sentiment. He said in a statement that he hopes Yale will reconsider and keep the program.

“We hope Yale will review this unfortunate decision so that YIISA’s critical work can continue,” Harris said. “In our experience working with YIISA, AJC has been impressed by the level of scholarly discourse, the involvement of key faculty, and the initiative’s ability, through conferences and other programs, to bring a wide range of voices to the Yale campus.”

A column published Monday in the New York Post claims that Yale closed the program because YIISA “refused to ignore the most virulent, genocidal and common form of Jew-hatred today: Muslim anti-Semitism.”

But Frances Rosenbluth, deputy provost for social sciences and faculty development, said the committee that reviewed YIISA based its assessment “solely on the issue of faculty leadership and involvement.”

“Yale is strongly committed to freedom of speech, which gives rise to a rich diversity of views on campus,” she said.

This piece, by David Burt, is from Yale News.

YIISA published some interesting working papers on antisemitism.

Here is YIISA’s seminar series.

Here is YIISA’s video archive.

Clemens Heni’s blog piece about the closing down of YIISA is here.

Ben Cohen’s piece on Pajamas Media.

102 Responses to “YIISA to close down”

  1. modernityblog Says:

    Pity, I hope they put their lecture archive on YouTube or something similar.

  2. Inna Says:

    Just e-mailed donald.green@yale.edu and thomas.conroy@yale.edu . As it seems that YIISA is being shut for at least partially political reasons (studying anti-Semitism is “controversial”) it is quite important that Yale be made aware that not studying anti-Semitism is also controversial.

  3. Zkharya Says:

    Obviously, this is upsetting, but programs are being cut right, left and centre. It is a shame if this goes the same way as Hebrew A Level, but it is a numbers game, and Jews and their associates are relatively few.

  4. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    “But Frances Rosenbluth, deputy provost for social sciences and faculty development, said the committee that reviewed YIISA based its assessment “solely on the issue of faculty leadership and involvement.”

    “Yale is strongly committed to freedom of speech, which gives rise to a rich diversity of views on campus,” she said.”

    Hmmm…but not, apparently, quite so strongly if those views are about the importance of studying _all_ aspects of antisemitism.

    And if it is only a coincidence that the closure follows complaints and objections from Moslems (no less than the PLO Ambassador to the US, among others), why so coy in not saying so. It makes it appear that “the Lobby” ain’t so powerful after all. You reading this Mearsheimer and Walt? Greg Philo? et al

  5. Blacklisted Dictator Says:

    The closure is quite chilling, especially when one reads Clement Heni’s blog piece.

    It is worth noting that for a long period after the second world war ( at least ,up until the mid 1970’s?), antisemitism was not properly examined in academic studies about the Nazi era. There seemed to be a reluctance on the part of most historians to study the holocaust. Of course, there were many complex reasons why this was the case.

    Perhaps the closure of YIISA is in some way connected to this previous unwillingness to carefully analyze the then relatively recent history of the extermination of the Jews. So one should not be too surprised if the study of today’s antisemitism is too complex, too demanding and too politically incorrect for post-modernist Yale.

  6. David Rubin Says:

    The closer of YIISA reflects anti-Israel trends and is already celebrated by rabid anti-Zionists.

    http://mondoweiss.net/2011/06/challenging-anti-semitism-must-be-rooted-opposing-racism-not-defending-israel.html

  7. Blacklisted Dictator Says:

    Caroline Glick’s take on the YIISA closure:

    http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Columnists/Article.aspx?id=224374

  8. Carlo Says:

    Anti-Semitism used to mean discrimination against Jewish people. For example, in Britain in the 1950s, despite the lessons of WWII, some British landlords and some employers discriminated against Jews and many golf clubs and other institutions would admit only WASPs as members. That has all changed, Jews are now socially integrated at all levels, serious discrimination occurring these days mostly with regard to more recent non-European immigrants.
    In France, the large community of immigrants from North Africa tend to sympathize politically with Palestinians, a similar social underclass, and sometimes express hostility towards Jewish neighbours, occasionally with tragic results.
    But there is no official, administrative discrimination against Jews in Europe as existed in a number of European countries in the 1930s. Discrimination today, and frequently physical violence, is directed primarily at foreign immigrants and refugees, and Roma.
    I suspect that a similar situation prevails in the United States. There doesn’t seem to be much concern in US Jewish publications for the problems of African Americans or Mexican immigrants for example.
    Today, Jewish and Israeli advocacy groups conflate criticism of Israel and Israeli policies with discrimination against Jews so it’s not surprising that the topic is considered “controversial”.
    Jewish and Israeli ethnocentrism prevents Jewish nationalists from viewing the larger picture. If they protested against racial and religious discrimination and prejudice across the board instead of focusing only on anti-Semitism, and using it as a ruse to defend Zionism, they would have a sounder ethical basis and find many allies on the left – including within academia.

    • Paul M Says:

      What a load of tosh. If prejudice against Jews isn’t “official, administrative” then it isn’t antisemitism? Jews are under an obligation to talk about discrimination against blacks and latinos before we’re permitted to talk about the bigotry we see affecting us?

      Talk about a double standard. What other group’s concerns do you dismiss on like grounds? Are African American fears to be waved away now that they can enter golf clubs through the front door and there are black men in the White House and the Supreme Court? Are Muslim publications disqualified from bringing up cases of anti-Muslim bigotry if they don’t also protest antisemitism, colour prejudice, homophobia, the Armenian genocide and the occupation of Tibet?

      Jews protest antisemitism because it affects them directly, and because so few non-Jews lift a finger when it matters. They rightly interpret the massively hypocritical treatment of Israel as effectively antisemitic, no matter what motivates it. That self-protective focus is both their right and their responsibility, but it doesn’t and never has stopped Jews being active on human rights and social justice issues far beyond their own community.

      “Carlo” and all the other Carlo’s of the world are determined to continue the demonisation, delegitimisation and double standards against Israel. To be able to do that they have to insist that all this targeted vitriol is merely “criticism”, ignore the antisemitism inherent in it, and slander genuine, consistently stated Jewish fears as a disingenuous “ruse”. So many of us, Carlo, telling you that anti-Zionism is poisoned with antisemitism, and all of us lying to shield Israel from fair scrutiny. It’s enough to make you think there’s something uniquely dishonest about the Jews.

    • conchovor Says:

      ‘But there is no official, administrative discrimination against Jews in Europe’

      But there is/was in the Arab, Islamic world; which is why most left, mostly for Israel; and there is the wider discrimination against the descendants of approximately half the Jews displaced or effectively driven from Europe and the Arab world in their state, national existence, Israel; whose fundamental legitimacy is ‘criticised’ (more like attacked or assaulted) widely, including in the Europe you say is effectively free from antisemitism.

      That Europe isn’t discriminating against the small number of its Jews that are left: it’s (or quite a few of its non-Jewish citizens are) discriminating against about 1/2 the Jews it effectively forced to leave in the first place.(the other half having gone to America up to about 1914).

    • Blacklisted Dictator Says:

      Carlo,

      Some Jews in The UK feel threatened by the anti-semitic nature of Islamist ideology. Although much of the latter is publicly directed against Israel, when one investigates a little deeper, one also finds that it is directed, more broadly, against Jews.

      Are you suggesting that UK Jewry should ignore this ideology? Should they not, for example, be concerned about a recent report which warns of Islamic radicalisation in UK universities?

      Even if much of the “old-school” (no Jews in golf clubs etc) anti-semitism no longer exists, some Jews are sensitive to the newer variant which seems to be making head-way in the UK and beyond. Of course, I grant you that not all Jews perceive this to be a problem, but then again prior to WW2, it is worth noting that many European Jews underestimated the threat posed by The Nazis.

  9. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    Carlo is either naive, the victim of wishful thinking or (as Paul M suggests) being very witting in an effort to diminish any apprehension of antisemitism in the west. What other religious group in the UK has to provide its own security for its religious and cultural buildings? Which other religious groups in the UK regularly have their cemeteries vandalised and gravestones smashed and graffitied on with antisemitic and nazi symbols and slogans? What members of which other religious groups are regularly attacked (including physical attacks) for their presumed support of another country – purely because of their religion, note – which is a legitimate member of the United Nations in good standing?

    Carlo should be able to answer these questions with evidence to support what are, at the moment, mere assertions. And mere assertions butter no parsnips on this website. And there is abundant evidence for a similar situation in other European countries: Aftonblad of Sweden on alleged organ theft, anyone?

    On other matters: Caroline Glick’s article is a gem, going further than the article at the head of this thread on this matter. Perhaps, permissions permitting, it could be published in its own right as an article?

    Secondly, given that Daedalus, the Journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (published on its behalf by MIT), has devoted its Winter and Spring 2011 issues (published as Vol 140, Nos. 1 & 2) to the question of Race in the US (No. 1 by historians – Race in the Age of Obama; No. 2 by social scientists – Race, Inequality & Culture), the editors might be persuaded to devote a future issue to the question of antisemitism. That is, publish the papers produced for that critical and apparently seminal YIISA conference in 2010 on global antisemitism.

    I’d certainly be interested in buying it: I picked up the issues referred to above in a Barnes & Noble in Manhattan. Unfortunately, we’re quite unlikely to see its equivalent in bookstores like Blackwells here in the UK.

  10. Carlo Says:

    I may be naive as Brian suggests but I do believe that anti-Semitism in the West is less significant than the discrimination and abuse suffered by other minorities. “Which other religious groups in the UK regularly have their cemeteries vandalised?” Can’t answer that as I don’t live in the UK, but such desecration occurs regularly in France where the affected graves are both Jewish and Muslim. The most recent case was in a military cemetery. Unable to supply details as I don’t keep a file on these things. Sorry about your parsnips.
    What I was trying to say was that while all racial and religious discrimination including anti-Semitism is wrong, the terminology applies to victimisation of people, not to hostile or critical attitudes toward countries or their policies.
    Criticising UN Member States Indonesia for genocide in East Timor, Egypt for discrimination against Copts, Algeria for mistreatment of the Kabyl etc. is either accurate and justified or is not, but is hardly evidence of Islamophobia. Similarly, criticism of “legitimate member of the United Nations in good standing” Israel’s treatment of minorities is either accurate or inaccurate but doesn’t equate with anti-Semitism.
    The “double standards” to which Paul refers are applied frequently to international affairs by those nationalists and chauvinists who consider their state to be exceptional and not subject to the requirements of international law.

    • Blacklisted Dictator Says:

      Carlo,

      I note that you have not addressed my above questions/comments.

      The sad truth is that historically ant-zionism and anti-semitism have gone hand-in-hand. Many Jews are aware of this
      and are, moreover, concerned that this hatred towards them, extends beyond Israel’s borders to Western Europe and the USA.

      Of course, people like yourself should be encouraging Hamas to delete the anti-semitic elements in its charter. However, I rarely, if ever, hear such voices and I can only conclude that this virulent hatred does not concern anti-racists like yourself. Moreover, it does not even seem to bother David Cameron or William Hague.

  11. Absolute Observer Says:

    Carlo thinks that because Jews have assimilated antisemitism is an impossibility.
    Carlo seems to think that because Muslims suffer both political and social racism Jews should shut up about antisemitism.
    Carlo thinks that until Jews care about everyone “across the board” they should shut the fuck up.
    Carlo thinks that Jews shout antisemitism to defend Israel.

    Carlo’s statements comes from a long antisemitic tradition.

    He thinks that because Jews are assimilated, antisemitism is a thing of the past (the same argument made in the 1890’s in France and Germany).
    He thinks that because the State is not pursuing antisemitic policies then there is no antisemitism. If this was the case, there would have been virtually no antisemitism for most of the 20th century in most of Europe.
    Jews make too big a fuss about the harms that they suffer.
    Jews only care about themselves and that until they demand emancipation for all they are selfish and wrong to care about emancipation for themselves (this is the antisemitic Bruno Bauer’s position taken to pieces by Marx in the Jewish Question).
    Carlo believes that Jews lie.

    What Carlo thinks is what passes for analysis (i.e. denial) of antisemitism on many sections of the left.

    In one post, Carlo manages to articulate precisely what Engage and others recognise as the racism that confronts Jews in general today and those who dare raise the question of contemporary antisemitism.

  12. Absolute Observer Says:

    Carlo thinks that if Israel is the object of “criticism” then antisemitism is impossible. If only that were the case!

    Antisemitism attached to Jews because of their denial of Christ; then, with seculalrism and emancipation, antisemitism was thought to be at an end, but then,
    Antisemitism attached to Jews as secret rulers of the world, then,
    Antisemitism attached to Jews as the rulers of capital, then,
    Antisemitism attached to Jews as Bolsheviks, then, but then with the Shoah, the post-war settlement, the rise of the EU, etc, antisemitism was at an end. But then,
    Antisemitism attaches (sometimes and in some circumstances) to Jews as Zionists and as Israel as a state (as evidenced by “the Lobby” argument, the idea that Israelis kill children for their organs, the idea that ZIonists are immoral that Zionists (and Jews) care only for themselves).

    Carlo’s is a classic case (repeated at various points in time) that always locates antisemitism in the past and never in the present. And it is in this context that Carlo can only conclude that Jews are lying, making it up, using claims of its existence as an excuse, etc., etc., etc.

  13. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    Carlo: ‘“Which other religious groups in the UK regularly have their cemeteries vandalised?” Can’t answer that as I don’t live in the UK, but such desecration occurs regularly in France where the affected graves are both Jewish and Muslim.’ Actually, Carlo, with that sentence of yours, you answer my question. Namely, that Jewish graves get desecrated, certainly in France. Why? Presumably because of antisemitism. Or do have another reason?

    You talked about _Europe_ in general, though you now admit you know only about France, where you live. Without evidence, which you admit (at least tacitly, by not presenting any) you don’t have, you are unable to talk about anywhere else in Europe. You want sources that it actually happens in the UK? Google Community Security Trust. They present reports every year as to what the position is in the UK. You have no idea what the reference to Aftonblad is about? Go to “Search old and new Engage together”, click on it, and type Aftonblad into the box. You’ll find a lot there.

    Do that, and any other searches you might think of concerning, say Germany today, and then come back and, if you still believe that there is no antisemitism in contemporary Europe, refute that evidence. After all, it doesn’t stand alone, it needs to be _interpreted_.

    And, by the way, talking about France is not an answer to evidence about the UK. And I would be quite surprised if you turned up evidence that _every_ mosque (unlike _every_ synagogue) in the UK needs security outside it, every time the building is occupied.

    If you fail to produce evidence (or an apology for getting it wrong), then your motives for writing what and how you did becomes highly suspect, as Absolute Observer says.

  14. Bill Says:

    “Which other religious groups in the UK regularly have their cemeteries vandalised?” Can’t answer that as I don’t live in the UK

    Those would be the Jewish ones, Carlos. And I don’t live in the UK (hell, I even eat Cheezeburgers) and I know that. There are datapoints on that and plenty else. Just as the new study from Canada that has Jews surpassing Blacks in hatecrime victimization. But I guess we can’t talk about that until you let us.

    Are muslims victims of discrimination and hate crime? Yes. Blacks? Oh yeah. Latinos? You betcha? And Jews? Yes! But you can get away with the latter, and the UK’s UCU is working overtime to make getting away with it damn easy by blowing off the EUMC working definition of antisemitism — into which you can plug-and-play any member group within a protected classification (such as those I list above) and it will fly like an eagle. Put in Jews? And guess what? No-can-do.

    What’s more you can even link to David-freaking-Duke.com** on an listserve that’s marinated in the BDS movement by someone everyone insisted wasn’t racist or antisemetic. And people were feigning innocence wondering how that happened and invested more attention on killing news of the posting rather than actually confronting the reasons someone thought it was just fine to submit it, with others defending the article (rather like defending that stack of Hustler The Missus finds in the attic). And yes, Carlos that actually happened! And do I even need to discuss Voz-de-Azlan that certain latino student groups linked to? (Not sure if they still do, it’s not a piece of swill that I follow?) That little gem is low hanging fruit to be sure so I better not mention their pre-9/11 article on that “‘Jewess’ Chandra Levy.” That was classy — and informative in soooo many ways back when our priorities were on Gary Condit’s wandering whoo-diddly. And we’ll stay off the NOI and similar rhetoric since they can say what they want and without a word about antisemitism — unlike — you know — those uppity Jews.

    There was even a formal letter by the BDS movement submitted to the British Medical Journal arguing to discriminate (it’s ok when you say it’s a boycott) against Jewish Israelis and only Jewish Israelis (as opposed to everyone else) as Jews by explicitly leveraging classical Jewish stereotypes. Ironically Hickey’s favored stereotypes were those that emerged in response to centuries of anti-Jewish discrimination. But there was no antisemitism there.

    And certainly Jews should not be the only group isolated and expected to read off of scripts written by non-Jews for non-Jewish consumption before antisemitism just might be taken under consideration — after everything else. That’s what’s happening. That’s what you are suggesting.

    You are free of course, strongly encouraged even, to focus on whatever forms of racism and discrimination you wish. But please. Don’t you dare insist that those of us who have had raw antisemitism rubbed in our face to shut up about what we or our colleagues are going through so you don’t have to have any part of your consciousness inconveniently raised.

    And don’t even think of implying that there can’t be any center or institute to study this so-called antisemtism (the “mythical” oldest and most virulent prejudices in the west) until the people who ignore it, blow it off, and even binge on it or just taste it everyone once in a while, say that it’s time.

    —-
    **(with such informative links in plain sight to news-you-can-use like as “Jewish Supremacy” and “What ever happened to Eugenics?” – that’s my favorite – and the predictable complaining about welfare for minorities – because that’s just you know… what antizionist?)

  15. Carlo Says:

    Thanks for telling me what I think Absolute. But rather than an Absolute Observer you come across more as an Absolut imbiber.
    I never said that anti-Semitism is impossible, that there is none, or that Jews should shut up about it. Moreover, I didn’t say that Jews are liars, although some are, just like other people. All I suggest is that people like yourself get a sense of proportion.
    Thanks too for your history of anti-Semitism – it reveals how you overlook or ignore the broader geopolitical significance of the newish nation state, protégé of a superpower, its raisons d’état, its claims to represent not only its own citizens but a scattered Diaspora, and the way that has altered the inter-communal ball game in other countries. You treat Israel as though it were just another shtetl.
    That you have seized the occasion to construct your elaborate diatribe on what I didn’t say suggests that there are few critics on this site and that the posters here are used to agreeing among themselves.

    • Bill (Channeling Sid the Sexist) - Satire at work kids. Says:

      Thanks too for your history of anti-Semitism – it reveals how you overlook or ignore the broader geopolitical significance of the newish nation state, protégé of a superpower, its raisons d’état, its claims to represent not only its own citizens but a scattered Diaspora, and the way that has altered the inter-communal ball game in other countries.

      So.. If I’m mad at Mary and hit Susan, regardless of any reasons real or imagined for my dispute with Mary, I am not a misogynist, but rather an anti-Mary-ist? Same goes for acts against Jews. Or is that different? Is something different I’m missing about the significance of Mary and her role in building up the company’s contracts, her being a protégée of that bull-in-the-china-shop Steve (who also does a lot for the company and makes the rest of us look lazy)? And god! What about her reasons for being Mary (you know – as opposed to her being Frank who’s much more fun at the water cooler). And don’t get me started about her annoying tendency to speak for Susan when people, who are not misogynists, take Mary (or whatever was Mary before we hired Mary) out on her? What’s up with that?

      Darn Mary for messing up what was a nicely self-selected office before we had to start hiring those damn women. I wish they knew their place. I think I’ll pull the chair from under Jennifer, now. Stupid Mary. If only we didn’t have people like Mary around… or Jennifer… or Susan or Kathy. Hey, I’m just striking a blow for the working guy. No sexism in my heart at all. Human resources will agree with me. Right?

    • Jimbo Says:

      ‘Thanks too for your history of anti-Semitism – it reveals how you overlook or ignore the broader geopolitical significance of the newish nation state, protégé of a superpower, its raisons d’état, ‘

      Israel exists because, in the 19th and 20th centuries, European, North African and Asian Christendom and Islam either killed or effectively drove out most of ‘their’ Jews: before 1914, mostly to America; after 1914, mostly to Palestine, or what became Israel.

      Which is why Israel is the second or largest Jewish communities in the world today.

      It’s ‘raison d’etat’ is to defend and preserve its existence, against those who would rather Jews not lived in the land in above the tiny number to which imperial Christian and Islamic apartheid had accustomed them.

      ‘its claims to represent not only its own citizens but a scattered Diaspora,’

      No. Antisemites claim that.it claims that. Like you perhaps?

      ‘And the way that has altered the inter-communal ball game in other countries.’

      i.e. Arab Muslims and Christians who expelled Arab Jews (alluded to in my first paragraph in this post) are not primarily responsible for doing so, but Israeli Jews are. i.e. Israeli Jews are moral adults, while Arab Muslims and Christians are moral infants.

      i.e. Carlo is an Orientalist.

      ‘You treat Israel as though it were just another shtetl.’

      No, you treat it as antisemites treated those shtetls: fundamentally illegitimate, with no fundamental right of place, or even existence, in the first place.

    • Jimbo Says:

      “…the newish nation state, protégé of a superpower…”

      Which one did you mean? The USSR? Of which most of the Arab states which bordered Israeli became protegés? Including Egypt, whose military dictatorship it cultivated and nurtured?

      Surely not the UK, which abstained from the partition vote which birthed Israel.

    • Jimbo Says:

      ‘And the way that has altered the inter-communal ball game in other countries.’

      Do you mean that Israel is a priori responsible for the fact that Europe killed or effectively drove out most of its Jews?

      And does the fact that it treats the small number who remain relatively well compensate for that, somehow?

  16. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    “…the newish nation state, protégé of a superpower…” Which would be which one of the 100 or so created since the end of WW2? Any of those no longer British colonies? Or, come to that French ones either? (Both Britain & France were superpowers at the time) . If you mean Israel, say so. Not saying so is so cute as to be cloying.

    You claim that you “…never said that anti-Semitism is impossible, that there is none…”

    Hmmm…what you did say, in your first posting, was “That has all changed, Jews are now socially integrated at all levels, serious discrimination occurring these days mostly with regard to more recent non-European immigrants.” If that isn’t so close to what you claim you didn’t say, then you are trying to take us for ignorant poltroons. If you really think that Jews are now socially integrated, how come Tom Hickey, a member of the National Executive of the Universities and Colleges Union (both when he said it and now) can write the following in the British Medical Journal, and never have to withdraw or explain it: “In the case of Israel, we are speaking about a society whose dominant self image is one of a bastion of civilisation in a sea of medieval reaction. And we are speaking of a culture, both in Israel and in the long history of the Jewish diaspora, in which education and scholarship are held in high regard. That is why an academic boycott might have a desirable political effect in Israel, an effect that might not be expected elsewhere.”

    And if this isn’t antisemitic, to say nothing of racist (only Jews care about educating their children, but, e.g., Zimbabweans or Chinese don’t) , then what is? So much for all the other states in the world: they, clearly, care nothing for education!

    And as for “its (you do mean Israel, don’t you Carlo – don’t be so coy) claims to represent not only its own citizens but a scattered Diaspora…”, well, given that so many other people transparently don’t give a damn about Jews, why express surprise. Do you really think that anyone else was going to rescue those Jews from Entebbe airport, Carlo? And how many relatives did you lose in the Holocaust? The family genealogist tells me that we lost a couple of hundred, at least.

    So let’s have some facts to back up your assertions.

    And you have failed to answer any of the direct questions or requests for evidence from anybody here.

    That speaks volumes.

    • Bill Says:

      Do you really think that anyone else was going to rescue those Jews from Entebbe airport, Carlo?

      Story was that the Black Panthers had their planes in the air but had to circle France. Had they not been beaten to the scene by those meddling israelis, all of the hostages would have gotten out alive, and of course that uppity Bibi would never have been elected PM.

      • Bill Says:

        ( And while making smart-arsed responses about Entebbe, I forgot one major matter: Let’s recall that vaunted “international law” and a uncomfortably large lion’s share of the “international community,” lead by of all people, UN Sec General Kurt Waldheim, sided with the hijackers, and “Doctor” Idi Amin. I think I’ll put a tack on Jennifer’s chair now – that seems to be how the world works. Peace. Out.)

  17. Blacklisted Dictator Says:

    Here are the seminars at YIISA:
    http://www.yale.edu/yiisa/seminars.htm

    • Brian Goldfarb Says:

      So that’s 15 papers over two semesters (an academic year) of which 3 relate (and one of those indirectly, _very_ indirectly) to Islamic antisemitism. And that’s enough to get YIISA closed down because someone who isn’t even an accredited diplomat complains.

      It would appear that it’s not just Israeli academics who have their academic freedom threatened.

  18. Absolute Observer Says:

    You said,
    “Anti-Semitism used to mean discrimination against Jewish people. For example, in Britain in the 1950s, despite the lessons of WWII, some British landlords and some employers discriminated against Jews and many golf clubs and other institutions would admit only WASPs as members. That has all changed, Jews are now socially integrated at all levels, serious discrimination occurring these days mostly with regard to more recent non-European immigrants.”
    “Discrimination today, and frequently physical violence, is directed primarily at foreign immigrants and refugees, and Roma”.
    I said
    “He thinks that because Jews are assimilated, antisemitism is a thing of the past (the same argument made in the 1890′s in France and Germany).” You have said nothing to intimate why this is not the case other than to point to Muslim antisemitism in France. which you put down to “sympathy with the Palestinians”.

    You said,
    “If they protested against racial and religious discrimination and prejudice across the board instead of focusing only on anti-Semitism, and using it as a ruse to defend Zionism, they would have a sounder ethical basis and find many allies on the left – including within academia”.
    I said,
    “Carlo thinks that until Jews care about everyone “across the board” they should shut the fuck up.”
    “Jews only care about themselves and that until they demand emancipation for all they are selfish and wrong to care about emancipation for themselves (this is the antisemitic Bruno Bauer’s position taken to pieces by Marx in the Jewish Question)”

    You said,
    “Today, Jewish and Israeli advocacy groups conflate criticism of Israel and Israeli policies with discrimination against Jews so it’s not surprising that the topic is considered “controversial” and
    (use the claim of antisemitism) as “a ruse to defend Zionism”.
    I said,
    “Carlo believes that Jews lie”.

    “Moreover, I didn’t say that Jews are liars, although some are, just like other people.”
    True, just those Jews who raise the issue of antisemitism when it attaches to “criticism” of Israel (the unethical selfish Jews who their “allies on the left” won’t touch with a bargepole until they care about others).

    It must be irritating to hear what you have actually said as opposed to what you thought you had said.

    As to Israel as a “protege of a superpower”; I assume you are forgetting about the anti-imperialist war Israel has to fight against the Britain to gain independence and instead take the US’s current support (which begun in the 1970’s for very specific geo-political reasons) as eternal What a naive understanding of politics you have..

    “its claims to represent not only its own citizens but a scattered Diaspora,”
    Funny how when it comes to Israel, somehow the state is said to speak the truth of the matter as opposed to nothing more than nationalist rhetoric. After all the Pope claims to speak for all Catholics, or the President of Iran for all Muslims. However, people are rarely so stupid to take it at face value nor to use it as a means attack those for whom the claim is made.

    “and the way that has altered the inter-communal ball game in other countries.”
    Really!!

    “That you have seized the occasion to construct your elaborate diatribe on what I didn’t say suggests that there are few critics on this site and that the posters here are used to agreeing among themselves.”
    You said exactly what I said you said.

    Carlo, many people come to Engage and try to get away with repeating the crap that other sites think is “insightful” and “clever”,
    In fact, not one point you have raised has not been raised a thousand times before (in some instances, going back several decades and centuries).
    It is tired nonsense.
    Of course, you are also not the first to have to resort to insults when confronted with the meaning of your own words.

  19. NIMN Says:

    “All I suggest is that people like yourself get a sense of proportion”.

    Yes, you’re right. Carlo.
    You excellent critique of antisemitism just happened to turn on the idea that,
    Jews are unethical and care only about themselves.
    Antisemitism is a ruse made by Zionists,
    Israel/Zionists have, what was the word you used, “altered” inter-communal relations.
    That what one Zionist says in Israel can be used against all ZIonists and Jews everywhere.
    That there are two types of Jews, universal and ethical ones who speak the Truth and join others and particularist, selfish and unethical ones who only care about antisemitism.

    So, yes, let’s keep a sense of proportion here.
    After all, if a staunch defender of Jews (well, some Jews anyway) can put their argument so forcefully and cogently, then we can all agree that Jews are overreacting when they criticise your view and bring into relief their provenance.

    After all it’s not like the idea that Jews are overreacting, are hypersensitive to antisemitism, indeed, that they have a chip on their shoulder has ever been thought before.

    You truly are an original and novel thinker and, what is more, allow me to thank you for all your sterling work in combatting that tiny, teensy remnant of antisemitism that still excists today.
    You are a true mensch.

  20. Carlo Says:

    ‘You treat Israel as though it were just another shtetl.’ — No, you treat it as antisemites treated those shtetls: fundamentally illegitimate, with no fundamental right of place, or even existence, in the first place.
    ++ Not so. It is a legitimate UN member state. Unlike the shtetl though, it’s an aggressive, highly militarized state backed by the US superpower. How does the Jewish campaign against the British during the Mandate period invalidate this?
    ‘And the way that has altered the inter-communal ball game in other countries.’ — Do you mean that Israel is a priori responsible for the fact that Europe killed or effectively drove out most of its Jews?
    ++ Hardly, when Israel didn’t exist at the time. Nazism was responsible for that. What I meant was that unfortunately more anti-Jewish incidents occur abroad (in France at least) when Israel hammers the Palestinians, as during Operation Cast Lead.
    ++ Regarding Jewish integration into European society, because a British academic makes a tendentious statement and generalizes about Jews and Israel it doesn’t prove that Jews in Britain are not integrated. British people demonstrated against the Pope. Does that mean that Roman Catholics in Britain are not integrated?
    ‘So many of us, Carlo, telling you that anti-Zionism is poisoned with antisemitism, and all of us lying to shield Israel from fair scrutiny.’
    ++ Before WWII, Zionists did not have the clout among Jewish communities that they have today. Many, if not the majority, of those Jews in Europe who were trade unionists and political activists were Bundists, socialists and communists. Their first language was Yiddish. Some were Zionists but many were anti-Zionists. Were they too “poisoned with antisemitism”? Marek Edelman, the Bundist who assumed the final leadership of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising was also an anti-Zionist. Another poison victim?
    ++ Concerning numbers of relatives wiped out by the Nazis, I don’t play that game. Neither do I claim that “my Holocaust is more significant than your genocide”. Some of those who do so only admitted that there had been a genocide of Armenians, for example, after Turkey objected to its citizens being killed on the high seas by Israeli commandos.
    ++ Champions of Zionism are poorly placed to determine impartially what qualifies as “fair scrutiny”. Unlike Tzipi Livni and those to her right, most democrats believe that international law deserves respect. (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jan/24/papers-palestinian-leaders-refugees-fight)
    ++ I drifted onto Engage from one of those sites that you deride, and took you all for run-of-the-mill Israel apologists. But I’ve just read your sweetness-and-light mission statement and see that I was wrong and that there are certain distinctions to be made.
    You’re skeptical about nationalism, are against racism and support the Israeli peace movement although it’s not clear whether you mean Shalom Archav or Gush Shalom.
    You object to the the BDS movement but don’t suggest an alternative tactic to help alter the iniquitous status quo. BDS is already having an effect. (http://www.haaretz.com/weekend/week-s-end/netanyahu-in-the-land-of-lod-1.365714)
    When you express concern about the “demonization” of Israel, you don’t say where you believe valid criticism stops and demonization begins.
    You use the word as some use “delegitimization”, framing discussion around objection to Israel per se whereas in reality most informed criticism is of what the state does – how it behaves internally and towards its neighbours. Legitimacy relates to law. That Israel, like the US, disregards international law (the fourth Geneva Convention for example), suggests it also has some responsibility in the matter.

  21. conchovor Says:

    ‘You treat Israel as though it were just another shtetl.’ — No, you treat it as antisemites treated those shtetls: fundamentally illegitimate, with no fundamental right of place, or even existence, in the first place.
    ++ Not so. It is a legitimate UN member state. Unlike the shtetl though, it’s an aggressive, highly militarized state backed by the US superpower.’

    Exactly. The antisemite harkened on the alleged power and aggression of Jewish communities, backed by higher powers, and which communities they essentialized, like you, as aggressive, predatory and menacing. Measures they took to protect and defend themselves were considered automatic acts of aggression (in Islam they could not carry weapons, or strike a Muslim, even in self-defence. They could not even raise their hand to fend of a Palestinian Arab Muslim child’s stones, which they might hurl at Jews for an idle game).

    If Israel were not strong, Israel would not exist. It would have been wiped out long ago. It would never have been born.

    ‘How does the Jewish campaign against the British during the Mandate period invalidate this?’

    What invalidates it is the exclucivism, expulsionism and eliminationism of Palestinian and other Arab Muslims and Christians against Palestinian and Israeli Jews since the late 19th century, and which Jews have had to Resist for a century or so.

    If Israel were not strong, Israel would not exist.

    Israeli, Palestinian Jews had to Resist the Resistance of Palestinian and other Arab Muslims and Christians to Jews living in the land in above the tiny numbers to which imperial Christian and Islamic apartheid had accustomed them.

    A case can be made that Israeli Jews still have to Resist that Palestinian Resitance, rooted, as it is, in historical imperial Christian and Islamic apartheid.

    In any case, pretty much every Jewish minority in the Arab, Islamic world has been ended. Israeli Jews have no intention of being made a minority in their own state, by BDS de facto antisemites (I think), like you.

    ‘And the way that has altered the inter-communal ball game in other countries.’ — Do you mean that Israel is a priori responsible for the fact that Europe killed or effectively drove out most of its Jews? ++ Hardly, when Israel didn’t exist at the time. Nazism was responsible for that. What I meant was that unfortunately more anti-Jewish incidents occur abroad (in France at least) when Israel hammers the Palestinians, as during Operation Cast Lead.’

    But that is down to antisemites, not Israel. Just as Arab Muslim and Christian antisemites expelled almost all the Arab Jews, mostly to Israel. It is antisemites who says that Israel says it represents all Jews. Like you, perhaps?

    ++ Regarding Jewish integration into European society, because a British academic makes a tendentious statement and generalizes about Jews and Israel it doesn’t prove that Jews in Britain are not integrated.’

    Nor said I so.

    But now ignorant Europeans like you are discriminating against about half the European Jews that Europeans effectively drove out in the 20th century, those that comprise by descent about half Israeli Jews (the rest descended from Arab or Asian ‘Islamic’ Jews).

    ‘ British people demonstrated against the Pope. Does that mean that Roman Catholics in Britain are not integrated?’

    No. But European, North African and Asian Christians and Muslims did not kill or effectively drive out most Roman Catholics (actually in Islam it is a little different: they drove out quite a lot).

    ‘‘So many of us, Carlo, telling you that anti-Zionism is poisoned with antisemitism, and all of us lying to shield Israel from fair scrutiny.’
    ++ Before WWII, Zionists did not have the clout among Jewish communities that they have today.’

    In 1939, over 10% of European Jews subscribed to Zionist societies, the largest political grouping of Jews since antiquity.

    ‘Many, if not the majority, of those Jews in Europe who were trade unionists and political activists were Bundists, ‘

    The Bund were the largest single organized group. And they were Jewish nationalists.

    ‘socialists and communists. Their first language was Yiddish. Some were Zionists but many were anti-Zionists.’

    So what? Not after the war they weren’t, those that lived. You still think it’s 1939, or 1945.

    ‘Were they too “poisoned with antisemitism”? Marek Edelman, the Bundist who assumed the final leadership of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising was also an anti-Zionist.’

    So what? He still fought under a Zionist leader, Mordechaj Anielewicz.

    ‘Another poison victim?’

    No. After the war, a minority of a minority. Atypical of most Polish Jews, whom Soviet Polish cultural Christians drove out, after the war.

    + Concerning numbers of relatives wiped out by the Nazis, I don’t play that game. Neither do I claim that “my Holocaust is more significant than your genocide”.’

    Nor do I/We. And, did you have a genocide?

    ‘ Some of those who do so only admitted that there had been a genocide of Armenians, for example, after Turkey objected to its citizens being killed on the high seas by Israeli commandos.’

    Sooner than the Turks or most of the Islamic world, though. And they are far more than 6-7 million Israeli Jews.

    Why pick on the Jews concerned? Why must Jews out Islam Muslims, or Christianity Christians?

    Why seek to perfect only the one Jewish state from existence?

    Thanks, but no thanks. Go perfect yourself out of existence.

    ‘++ Champions of Zionism are poorly placed to determine impartially what qualifies as “fair scrutiny”. Unlike Tzipi Livni and those to her right, most democrats believe that international law deserves respect. (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jan/24/papers-palestinian-leaders-refugees-fight)’

    So does she. It depends on interpretation, subject to which is international law. Tzipi Livni followed the parameters of the Geneva Accord, thrashed out Israeli and Palestinian negotiators, 2001-2003, and launched with the blessing of Yasser Arafat.

    Jonathan Freedland wrote a Guardian editorial promoting the Geneva Accord in 2003:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2003/nov/05/comment.jonathanfreedland

    In 2008, Olmert and Livni followed it. Mahmoud Abbas chose not to follow that path.

    Unfortunately in 2011, Freedland suffered a bout of amnesia, and forgot he had blessed the Geneva Accord, 7 years earlier.

    ‘++ I drifted onto Engage from one of those sites that you deride, and took you all for run-of-the-mill Israel apologists. But I’ve just read your sweetness-and-light mission statement and see that I was wrong and that there are certain distinctions to be made.
    You’re skeptical about nationalism, are against racism and support the Israeli peace movement although it’s not clear whether you mean Shalom Archav or Gush Shalom.’

    Peace now, probably.

    ‘You object to the the BDS movement but don’t suggest an alternative tactic to help alter the iniquitous status quo. BDS is already having an effect. (http://www.haaretz.com/weekend/week-s-end/netanyahu-in-the-land-of-lod-1.365714)’

    The BDS of PSC and most organizations seeks the end of Zionism and the Jewish state i.e. = a continuation of Palestinian Arab and Christian, but anti-Jewish, nationalism, by other means. Full ROR for Palestinian Arab Muslims and Christians to Israel, and the end of Jewish ROR to all of Palestine, would mean the end of Israel within a short time.

    i.e. it does not = peace, more like war.

    ‘When you express concern about the “demonization” of Israel, you don’t say where you believe valid criticism stops and demonization begins.’

    e.g. Zionism is colonial evil. Jewish nationalism is fundamentally illegitimate, and the Jewish state should be dissolved, by coercion if necessary. Zionism should be ended, by coercion if necessary.

    I think that is en effait antisemitism, or what antisemitism has become today, or constitutes its most dangerous form.

    ‘You use the word as some use “delegitimization”, framing discussion around objection to Israel per se whereas in reality most informed criticism is of what the state does – how it behaves internally and towards its neighbours.’

    But few states are essentialized as the embodiment of colonial evil, based on a nationalism that is fundamentally illegitimate or evil.

    Many states, nations and societies have killed and expelled far more than Israel e.g. Russia, Turkey, even the US and UK, yet no one questions their legitimacy today.

    Most Palestinian refugees, for instance, still live within the borders of original British ruled Palestine. Most of the rest live very close to those borders. Those refugees occurred in a war in which the same or worse was threatened against Palestinian Jews, who were entitled to do pretty much anything to avert it.

    (Some) Palestinians only accepted partition, in principle, in 1988, 40 years late, after waging expulsionist or eliminationist war against Israel for that time, and before e.g. Palestinian Arab Muslims expelled the Jews of Hebron and East Jerusalem in the 1920s and 30s. From the Old City in 1948. Whither Jews could only return in 1967.

    By 1988, everything had to be negotiated. Jerusalem, the settlements, refugees etc.

    The best plan remains the Geneva Accord.

    BDS that seeks the exact 1967 borders, all the Old City to the Palestinians, full Palestinian ROR to Israel, the end of Zionism or the Jewish state, is not calculated to make peace.

    It is calculated to end any kind of Israel in a short space of time.

    i.e. it is not peace, it is war, en effait.

    ‘Legitimacy relates to law. That Israel, like the US, disregards international law (the fourth Geneva Convention for example), suggests it also has some responsibility in the matter.’

    But dissolving the one Jewish state for its alleged apartheid qualities into the surrounding sea/desert of Arab, Islamic states and societies, including the Palestinian, all of which are apartheid, at least with regard to Jews, by those very same criteria is not justice.

    It is injustice.

  22. Paul M Says:

    I will reply to only one item on your long list, which seems to be addressed to me. It’s all I have time and interest for right now; possibly someone else will do you the courtesy of taking some of your other points seriously.

    I don’t need your potted history of pre-war Zionism and its relationship to the Bund and I doubt there are many others here who do. It’s not only familiar, it’s irrelevant. I will put this as simply and clearly as I can: If someone says “I experience such-and-such tactic as antisemitism” you don’t get to say “No you don’t. You’re making it up. If you insist on doing that, you might as well also go around with a neon sign that says “I’m a Bigot” because what you’re actually saying is I don’t have to listen to you; you’re all liars and manipulators. It’s as simple as that. There are some people who carry their prejudices knowingly, defiantly and in the open. Some others are furtive, ashamed to publicly own to them. Many more, perhaps a majority, are unaware of the prejudice built into their attitudes and resist understanding to avoid having to surrender cherished beliefs. It’s not important to me to know what category to put you in. All that matters is the functional consequence, which is that you espouse and excuse ideas that are antisemitic in practice and are willfully deaf to even the possibility that they are. I’m afraid that makes you — regardless of what you think you think of Jews — a practicing antisemite.

  23. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    I must apologise to the moderators for putting them through the task of reading the following, but, even allowing for other responses already posted, there are points that need to be made and, regrettably, at length.

    I notice that, yet again, apart from a couple of references to newspaper articles, Carlo ignores requests for evidence for his claims. He further refuses to indicate whether he has looked at the sources we point him to, in my case, among other things, CST reports demonstrating the continuation of high levels of antisemitic events in the UK. To do so would undermine his case that antisemitism in the west is minimal compared with other groups.

    Not that he produces anything that passes for evidence to support anything he says, come to that.

    Then, in his latest posting, we have, among much else, the following points:

    “What I meant was that unfortunately more anti-Jewish incidents occur abroad (in France at least) when Israel hammers the Palestinians, as during Operation Cast Lead.” And this isn’t antisemitism? Jews, outside Israel, being attacked for what Israel does. That is, they are being treated as though they are responsible for what Israel does. If he wants to know how silly this sounds, he should read Anthony Lerman on the subject of antisemitism and support for Israel.

    “Regarding Jewish integration into European society, because a British academic makes a tendentious statement and generalizes about Jews and Israel it doesn’t prove that Jews in Britain are not integrated.” Maybe, maybe not. But Carlo’s assertion isn’t evidence either way, and has absolutely nothing to do with antisemitism. In case he hadn’t noticed, Jews in Germany were highly integrated in 1933. During WW2, many British Jews served in the UK armed forces, and there was even a Jewish Brigade, formed of Jews in Mandate Palestine. Despite this, there is still antisemitism in the UK and throughout Western Europe, which Carlo treats as of no account.

    “++ Concerning numbers of relatives wiped out by the Nazis, I don’t play that game.” This is plainly a response to my comment above, where I said “And as for “its (you do mean Israel, don’t you Carlo – don’t be so coy) claims to represent not only its own citizens but a scattered Diaspora…”, well, given that so many other people transparently don’t give a damn about Jews, why express surprise. Do you really think that anyone else was going to rescue those Jews from Entebbe airport, Carlo? And how many relatives did you lose in the Holocaust? The family genealogist tells me that we lost a couple of hundred, at least.” Carlo’s snide (and it _is_ snide) response is no answer, contains no evidence to refute the essential point, that Israel seeks to represent Diaspora Jewry because no-on else does. And does so in part _because_ of the Holocaust, when the world signally failed to do very much about the murder of Europe’s Jews when they had the chance. Can we have a response to _that_ point, please?

    I thought not.

    “You object to the the BDS movement but don’t suggest an alternative tactic to help alter the iniquitous status quo. BDS is already having an effect.” Well, let’s start with the fact that no-one is proposing a serious BDS programme against any state _other_ than Israel, even though the claimed (at least by those who aren’t openly antisemitic) basis for BDS is Israel’s flouting of the human rights of the Palestinians. Even if we don’t bother with the flouting of human rights of the inhabitants of Gaza by Hamas, or those of the inhabitants of South Lebanon by Hezbollah, there is a multiplicity of cases of states flouting the human rights of their _own_ citizens at least as seriously (if not more so) as the Israelis are alleged to be flouting those of the Palestinians. But do we hear of demands of a BDS campaign against them? I’m waiting, Carlo. And if Carlo can’t write the list for himself, then either he is a fool or he really does take us for fools. Oh, and please demonstrate just _how_ BDS “is already having an effect”? Perhaps he has started to suffer problems with his computer because he won’t use Israeli-developed software or hardware? Or incipient illness because he refuses to use medication based on Israeli r & d?

    And, BTW, he acknowledges that he has read “About us” (or claims he has), yet can’t bring himself to acknowledge that both there and throughout these columns, many alternatives to BDS have been suggested. But, oddly enough, democratic states have to be changed by their citizens, just like in France.

    “When you express concern about the “demonization” of Israel, you don’t say where you believe valid criticism stops and demonization begins.” This takes the biscuit. Carlo demonstrates here that he _really_ does believe us to be fools and poltroons. Just reading “About us”, the Euston Manifesto, and endless discussions in these columns would have shown him that we have offered numerous examples of how to criticise Israel without demonising it. Plainly, he doesn’t read these columns. Plainly, he is a troll. Plainly, he isn’t up to his self-appointed task of confronting us.

    At the very least, he should bring some evidence to the table. However, what he does is what so many others do: make assertions, repeat these when challenged, possibly change the subject, hoping we won’t notice, when we keep demanding evidence and argument. I’ve got news for him: we _do_ notice, and we _will_ keep challenging and demanding evidence.

    And, BTW, we really don’t care where he “wandered in” from: perhaps he should go back to where his failure to produce evidence and merely repeat cliches will be welcomed with applause. Which it won’t be here.

    • Bill Says:

      “What I meant was that unfortunately more anti-Jewish incidents occur abroad (in France at least) when Israel hammers the Palestinians, as during Operation Cast Lead.” And this isn’t antisemitism? Jews, outside Israel, being attacked for what Israel does. That is, they are being treated as though they are responsible for what Israel does. If he wants to know how silly this sounds, he should read Anthony Lerman on the subject of antisemitism and support for Israel.

      I guess he does think it’s ok to punch Susan when you’re mad at Mary…

      • Thomas Venner Says:

        “What I meant was that unfortunately more anti-Jewish incidents occur abroad (in France at least) when Israel hammers the Palestinians, as during Operation Cast Lead.”

        I don’t know all the statistics from France, but I know this definitely isn’t the case in the UK. Anti-Semitic hate crime over here started to rise at the beginning of the recession, not with Operation Cast Lead. The periods during which Israel was “hammering the Palestinians”, as Carlo puts it, only saw a tiny, almost negligible peak in the rate of anti-Semitic incidents.

        Israel’s actions do not “cause” anti-Semitism, they simply give anti-Semites a method for claiming some kind of justification. Rational, non-anti-Semitic people do not see the IDF bombing Gaza and decide after this to go and attack some Jewish guy who lives down the road, in the same way that rational, non-Islamophobic people did not decide to attack Muslims after the 9/11 or 7/7 bombings. The only people who would target Muslims in general after a terrorist attack carried out by some other entirely unrelated Muslims would be people who hated Muslims already and were just looking for an excuse, and, likewise, the only people who would target Jews in general in response to Israel’s actions would be people who already had it in for the Jews. The idea that someone with no previous hostility to Jews would somehow spontaneously become hostile to Jews because of Israel’s actions makes no sense whatsoever.

        I’m no fan of the current Israeli government, and I don’t think they’re doing Jews elsewhere in the world any favours by handing anti-Semites a string of convenient excuses. But it’s important to recognise that the invocation of these excuses by anti-Semites does not give their actions any justification.

  24. Carlo Says:

    Thank you for taking time to reply to my apparently tired old arguments that you’ve heard a thousand times before. I’ll try to keep this brief.
    No thanks for the label though. If one’s ideas are sound, it is possible to exchange views without attaching abusive labels to people.
    I mentioned the Bund because they were distinctively Jewish socialists without being Zionists. Their point of view was perfectly legitimate.
    The crimes against Jews in the past stemming from Christian, Moslem, or whatever religious bigotry, do not justify injustice to Palestinians today. (See, for example, B’Tselem, and other Israeli human rights NGOs.) Neither does a hypothetical “existential threat”.
    Ethnic cleansing in European history is now “accepted” because it happened in the past – but it doesn’t make such action admissible. Following forced transfer of people during and immediately after WWII, international humanitarian law was developed. There have been serious breaches, of course, but the law sets the norm for acceptable international behaviour.
    No-one expects Israel to be perfect, or even “a light unto the nations”, but it is not unreasonable to ask that it respect international law.
    It’s probably fair to say as Conchovor does that “If Israel were not strong, Israel would not exist” – in terms of its early years. In those days it was certainly a haven for Jewish refugees with few choices. But today it is has become a nuclear-armed garrison state and behaves like a neighbourhood bully.
    To cite such realities on this site elicits accusations of anti-Semitism – this being a standard Zionist response to criticism of Israel. Jimmy Carter’s an anti-Semite, Desmond Tutu’s another one, and of course Judge Goldstone. Noam Chomsky (probably another S-HJ!) is denied entry, and on and on. Don’t know how you categorize Michel Warschawsky, Uri Avnery or other Jewish Israeli dissidents. No matter.
    Despite the possibility that you’ve heard them before, I’ll leave you with the words of the late Yeshayahu Leibowitz: “There is a path that leads from nationalism, through militarism, to barbarity. Prussia took that path and, since 1967, Israel has been following it too.”

    • Bill Says:

      It’s probably fair to say as Conchovor does that “If Israel were not strong, Israel would not exist” – in terms of its early years. In those days it was certainly a haven for Jewish refugees with few choices. But today it is has become a nuclear-armed garrison state and behaves like a neighbourhood bully. (emph. mine)

      Sorry Carlos, but you’ve dug yourself into a hole of self parody and are literally channeling Bob Dylan.

    • Paul M Says:

      There are possibly some interesting things still to be said about the Bundists but not here, because they are as irrelevant now as they were when you first introduced them.

      My argument with you will not go anywhere until it gets beyond this:

      “using it — antisemitism — as a ruse to defend Zionism”

      When you are able and willing to acknowledge that, just as with any other form of racism, the charge of antisemitism can’t simply be waved away with “They’re faking it” — when you can straightforwardly and genuinely retract your slander, quoted above, and engage with what it is that Jews see in certain kinds of anti-Israel activism that they identify as antisemitic — then we can move on. Perhaps then we can argue about why “criticism” of Israel is so different in form, intensity and objective from criticism of other entities. Perhaps then we will no longer need to: Your new understanding of the first point will illuminate the second for you.

    • conchovor Says:

      ‘I mentioned the Bund because they were distinctively Jewish socialists without being Zionists. Their point of view was perfectly legitimate.’

      And irrelevant by virtue of their either becoming extinct or fleeing persecution rather than fighting it, in vain.

      ‘It’s probably fair to say as Conchovor does that “If Israel were not strong, Israel would not exist” – in terms of its early years. In those days it was certainly a haven for Jewish refugees with few choices. But today it is has become a nuclear-armed garrison state and behaves like a neighbourhood bully.’

      Except you patently overlook the anti-Israeli, anti-Zionist and antisemitic discourse of its neighbours, state, intellectual and popular, that is overwhelmingly representative.

      An Arab world that expelled almost all its non- or anti-Zionist Jews; and now, in its alleged Spring, is still in denial about the prejudice that didi it, is not a friendly neightbourhood.

      Now many in the BDS movement want to storm Israel’s borders with millions of Palestinian Arabs. While Iran, Hizbullah and Hamas openly espouse Israel’s ultimate extinction; Egyptians seek to cancel the 1979 peace treaty.

      ‘To cite such realities on this site elicits accusations of anti-Semitism ‘

      If you cite Israel’s nuclear weapons while omitting to mention the eliminationism or expulsionism she has faced since before her birth, and still faces today, it is unjust. Which may be antisemitic, yes.

    • conchovor Says:

      ‘‘It’s probably fair to say as Conchovor does that “If Israel were not strong, Israel would not exist” – in terms of its early years. In those days it was certainly a haven for Jewish refugees with few choices. But today it is has become a nuclear-armed garrison state and behaves like a neighbourhood bully.’

      Except she has only gotten to these days by being strong, and she still faces expulsionist or eliminationist threats today, including a BDS movement that ‘merely’ seeks full Palestinian ROR and the end of a Jewish state and/or the ZIonism that bore her; heralding, as it would, the end of any Israel qua Jewish Israel shortly thereafter.

  25. Absolute Observer Says:

    No one on Engage has called Chomsky a self-hating Jew.
    No one on Engage has called Goldstine an anti-semite or self-hating Jew.
    No one on Engage has called Tutu an antisemite without referencing his comments about “Jewish Power” and “telephone calls” and even then it has been said that he is utilising antisemitic ways of thinking and not that he is an “antisemite”.

    “To cite such realities on this site elicits accusations of anti-Semitism; – this being a standard Zionist response to criticism of Israel.”
    Not quite true is it Carlo?
    I, and others, using your own words, indicated where some of your thinking intersects with antisemitic ways of thinking.
    Rather than relfect on those comments, you resorted to abuse – “absolute imbiber” – and repeated the claim that you can’t say a word about “Israel” (or, in this case “Zionists”) without being “accused” of antisemitism.
    You accuse “Zionists”/Jews of using antisemitism as a “ruse”.
    People point out to you that such a claim is itself problematic (the claim that ZIonists and Jews know they are lying when they raise the issue of antisemitism, they are acting in “bad faith” and they know it; that they are using the claim dishonestly to shut down debate.)
    And, when this is brought to your attention, you fall back on your initial claim that you can’t criticise Israel without being called an antisemite.
    Well, when popl;e stop falling back on antisemitic ways of thinking, then the “accusations” of antisemitism will stop.
    Not that hard really.

    It’s a pity that Carlo, like so many others, is not content with demanding Israel act according to international law; he is not content to make references to highly respected (and threatened) NGO’s in Israel, but has to add “hidden extras”, such as the claim of antisemitism by those who oppose racism is a “ruse by Zionists”; that “ZIonists” and Engage call all critics of Israel self-hating Jews and antisemites, etc..

    If anything taints the the current debates about Israel and Palestine, Carlo’s willingness to turn two blind eyes to the existence of antisemitism with one as well as “blaming the victim” with the other, is a perfect example of this latest version of the poverty of politics.

  26. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    “I mentioned the Bund because they were distinctively Jewish socialists without being Zionists. Their point of view was perfectly legitimate.” Of course it was, but they lost the argument by virtue of failing to appreciate just how much the Nazis meant it. At least the Zionists attempted to get people out – with frighteningly little success, of course. Anyway, we’ve had this discussion here before (not with you). Go to “Search old & new Engage…” and type in something like Bund v. Zionists to see what it brings up.

    You may be happy repeating yourself, we’ll just refer you to the earlier debate.

    And as for “The crimes against Jews in the past stemming from Christian, Moslem, or whatever religious bigotry, do not justify injustice to Palestinians today. (See, for example, B’Tselem, and other Israeli human rights NGOs.) Neither does a hypothetical “existential threat”.”, well, you really aren’t bothering to read these pages with any degree of attention, are you, Carlo? There is nothing “hypothetical” about the clauses in the Charters of both Hamas and Hezbollah (to say nothing of the clauses in the PLO Charter or Ahmanadinejad’s threats to Israel): they call for the elimination of Israel and the expulsion of Jews (unless they are prepared to lived under a Caliphate. These Charters (of Hamas and Hezbollah) also threaten the lives of Jews all over the world. Try googling them, in English or French, as appropriate, and as has already been suggested to you.

    So there’s nothing “past” about threats to Israel or Jews worldwide. And you plainly haven’t read “About us” (despite your claim to have done), because you will know that few, if any, here defend the infractions of Palestinian human rights by Israelis nor the failure of the Netanyahu government to be serious about a two-state settlement.

    Now, how about some responses to the direct points I’ve made to you, both 3 days ago and last night (the latter might not have been up when you posted your comment). Some proper evidence would be nice, too, but I’m not holding my breath for that.

  27. Blacklisted Dictator Says:

    Carlo,
    You conclude with a quote from Yeshayahu Leibowitz: “There is a path that leads from nationalism, through militarism, to barbarity. Prussia took that path and, since 1967, Israel has been following it too.”

    The implcation of the above is that Zionism, since 1967, equates to Nazi “barbarity”. It really is a more roundabout way of saying that Israel is a Nazi state. Of course, there are a minority of Jews who will concur. However, I don’t think that this will prevent more mainstream Jewry from concluding that Leibowitz’s quote, is an inherently antisemitic re-writing of history.

  28. conchovor Says:

    ‘But today it is has become a nuclear-armed garrison state and behaves like a neighbourhood bully.’

    If that is the case, Israel exists despite a neighbourhood of bullies, particularly towards Jews.

  29. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    Actually, if Carlo wants to know ” where [we] believe valid criticism [of Israel] stops and demonization begins”, he could do worse than to go to:
    http://www.talkingsquid.net/archives/1702.

    He might find it interesting and, more importantly, an instructive answer to his query.

  30. Carlo Says:

    As I mentioned before, Engage’s statement of intent is reasonable enough. And I’m glad you haven’t denigrated Chomsky, Tutu or Goldstone and that you recognize abuse of Palestinian rights.

    The problem seems to be that when it comes to discussion of Israeli realities the posters here scrutinize my words for sub-texts and hidden meanings, parallel significances and areas where my “thinking intersects with antisemitic ways of thinking”. Thought police anyone?

    You’re entitled to express gut feelings if you’re feeling threatened in the area of your identity but it’s not a constructive way to discuss the problems of Israel and the Middle East, Jews, Palestinians, and people’s statements about them.

    Contrary to what some of you have written or implied I have never said that anti-Semitism does not exist. But neither is it unreasonable to say that accusations of anti-Semitism are also used politically. And I don’t mean with regard to dreck like the Dukes and Irvings of this world.

    Sorry Absolute Observer. Didn’t mean to upset you, just made a silly pun. “Absolut” (no “e”) is a brand of vodka.

    Blacklisted Dictator says: “Leibowitz’s quote, is an inherently antisemitic re-writing of history.” You may think so, but it was the considered opinion of a pious Jew and eminent philosopher who lived in Israel for many years.

    Paul M and Blacklisted Dictator might be interested to learn that: ‘Roger Cukierman, leader of France’s Jewish community at the beginning of the 21st century, proudly related to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz how he recommended to Ariel Sharon that Israel quell the harsh international criticism of its October 2000 massacre by opening a new front: the front of anti-Semitism. . . . Cukierman told Ariel Sharon that “instead of attempting to come up with unconvincing excuses, we would attack on a new front: anti-Semitism.” . . . a terrible accusation in Europe, fifty years after Auschwitz.’
    (http://www.alternativenews.org/english/index.php/blogs/michael-warschawski/3657-solidarity-with-palestinians-and-anti-semitism-)

    Conchovor accuses the Bund of not having fought the Nazis. As I pointed out, the Warsaw Ghetto Bundists did, and Marek Edelman became the central commander. After the war he was decorated by Poland and by France, but not by Israel.

    Conchovor also says: “Iran, Hizbullah and Hamas openly espouse Israel’s ultimate extinction”. True. Israeli politicians also espouse a pre-emptive strike against Iran. But in recent years Israel attacked Lebanon twice: 17,000 killed the first time, 1,400 the second. Cast Lead: 1,200 killed. Deeds not words. Is it “unjust and antisemitic” to say so?

    It’s not anti-Semitic to condemn Israeli militarism and Israel’s drift even further to the right. Neither is it anti-Semitic to condemn the actions of a state that not only ignores international law but that disregards the decisions of its own supreme court. The last time I looked Israel was still occupying Palestinian territory (rather than the reverse) and extending illegal settlement. After so many years might it not be such factors, rather than simple anti-Jewish prejudice and Arab propaganda, that are responsible for Israel’s declining international image?

    • Paul M Says:

      It’s interesting that the source for your claim about Roger Cukierman reads like a checklist of far-left slurs against Israel, from its colonialist essence to the discredited lie about al Dura. It’s interesting that when I went in search of more information about Cukierman, whom I don’t know, I got back link after link of him displaying a far more nuanced and cautious view of antisemitism than your source suggests, and that the one link I saw presenting him in a similar light to the one you do was written by Akiva Eldar, whose ideological position is also far left.

      All of this is interesting, but once again no more germane than your detours to the Bund, of blessed memory. Suppose I make you a gift of M. Cukierman. For the sake of argument let’s grant that your source takes impeccable care with the facts and is unimpeachably honest in presenting them. Where does that leave you? It leaves you with one man making claims in bad faith, and an attempt to use him to escape your obligation to take anyone else’s claims seriously.

      You get no such absolution. If someone insists that they are feeling the impact of antisemitism, the presumption is that they mean it. If you want to call them a liar, the onus is on you to prove it in each case — or, if you want a lower bar to clear, to at least prove it in so many cases as to demonstrate a clear pattern of dishonesty. So far, you have a series of one.

    • conchovor Says:

      Hi, Carlo, briefly:

      [Conchovor accuses the Bund of not having fought the Nazis. As I pointed out, the Warsaw Ghetto Bundists did, and Marek Edelman became the central commander.]

      Because the Zionist leader gave his life. So what? And most fighting units were Zionist. The Bundists only deigned to join the Zionists to fight the Nazis after most of the Jews of Warsaw had been deported to the camps.

      ‘After the war he was decorated by Poland and by France, but not by Israel.’

      a) he is honoured. i have been to the Ghetto Fighters’ Museum near Nahariya, where he is honoured.

      b) he was atypical of Polish Jews as a whole, who mostly left because of continued antisemitism after the war, under th Soviets. Edelman was a ‘special’ case, who escaped much of that, and was able to have a better quality of life. Again, so what?

      [Conchovor also says: “Iran, Hizbullah and Hamas openly espouse Israel’s ultimate extinction”. True. Israeli politicians also espouse a pre-emptive strike against Iran.]

      The Iran should stop speaking and acting so aggressively towards Israel.

      [But in recent years Israel attacked Lebanon twice: 17,000 killed the first time,]

      a) the P.L.O. hugely exaggerated the casualties, as it was in their interest to do so,

      b) it was only by defeating the P.L.O. in Lebanon that Israel compelled Arafat to come to negotiations. Why does Israel have to apologise for that?

      [1,400 the second. Cast Lead: 1,200 killed. Deeds not words.]

      a) Hizbullah should not have started a fight.

      b) it should should not have started a fight it couldn’t finish.

      c) Hamas shouldn’t profess eternal jihad until the extinction of any kind of Israel

      d) it shouldn’t have been digging a tunnel under the Gaza Israeli border

      e) again, so what?

      [Is it “unjust and antisemitic” to say so?]

      Asides the exaggerated Lebanon figures, no. But asides the casualty figures, what exactly are you saying?

    • conchovor Says:

      ‘It’s not anti-Semitic to condemn Israeli militarism and Israel’s drift even further to the right.’

      Not necessarily, though it could be, and is a bit dubious without mentioning Palestinian Arab nationalism’s being increasingly rejectionist of negotiations (e.g. Abbas’ effective rejection of the Geneva Accord at Annapolis 2008), now fed by the Arab Spring.

      ‘Neither is it anti-Semitic to condemn the actions of a state that not only ignores international law’

      Sometimes, like many other states and societies, including parts of Palestinian Arab society e.g. those that vote for Hamas. What is dubious is that U.N. focuses on the one Jewish state like no other.

      ‘but that disregards the decisions of its own supreme court.’

      Sometimes, it seems, as do others, so what? Why single out Israel.

      ‘The last time I looked Israel was still occupying Palestinian territory’

      Because Palestinians are still occupying Israeli security concerns, short, medium and long term. But the barrier implies Israel will shortly withdraw behind it, pretty much.

      ‘(rather than the reverse) and extending illegal settlement.’

      Not very much. Most of the fuss is about housing within existing areas assumed by the Geneva Accord to be annexed to Israel, in exchange for other land withing Israel. The area of land extended is fairly tiny. And most Israeli settlements are in places no one lived before.

      ‘After so many years might it not be such factors, rather than simple anti-Jewish prejudice and Arab propaganda, that are responsible for Israel’s declining international image?’

      It might., though it’s not very likely. The Organization of Islamic Countries successfully steers most U.N. General Assembly focus on Israel, to ridiculous, perhaps farcical, degrees, successfully deflecting pretty much all criticism from its member states. Arab, Islamic nationalist polemic and propaganda has a lot to do with it. And these very same states ethnically cleansed themselves of almost all their Jews, so it is highly unlikely that antisemitism plays no part.

  31. Carlo Says:

    Sorry, the figures were reversed. It should of course read 1,400 killed in Cast Lead and 1,200 in Lebanon.

    • Paul M Says:

      Sorry, the figures were plucked out of the air. It should of course read 1,159 killed in Cast Lead (over 60% combatants) and 850 in Lebanon (ratios unknown because both Hizballah and the Lebanese government have been completely opaque in their reporting).

      • Carlo Says:

        Thanks for the correction – that’s OK then. Along with infrastructural damage, use of white phosphorous and DIME weapons, cluster bombs etc.

        • Paul M Says:

          … terrorisation of the populations of Sderot, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Beersheva and various kibbutzim, kidnapping and burial alive (figuratively — or for all anyone knows, literally) for five years of lone teenagers, rocketing of school buses and sundry other violations of humanitarian law.

          Perhaps you meant these to be tucked away in your etc., but they somehow don’t stimulate the condemnation, the marches and rallies, the boycotts, the shouting down of speakers, and the UN special investigations that the exaggerated and decontextualised claims of Israeli wrongdoing do. Which brings us back to double standards and effective antisemitism.

          Which brings us back to where we need to be, Carlo. Are you ready to start taking antisemitism seriously yet?

        • conchovor Says:

          ‘Thanks for the correction – that’s OK then. Along with infrastructural damage, use of

          ‘white phosphorous’

          Not illegal as a marker or even an anti-personnel weapon, at times. But it was an incidental ingredient in old smoke shells. When the IDF learnt of this, it stopped using it.

          ‘and DIME weapons, cluster bombs etc.’

          Neither illegal. Hizbullah shouldn’t use cluster katyushas, shouldn’t fire from inside towns and villages, and hide its munitions there.

    • modernity Says:

      Carlo,

      Following your exchanges I can see that you (like many others) are not really very serious about antisemitism, are you?

      What comes through time and again in your contributions is not a connection to British Jews who get attacked approximately twice a day (600+ attacks a year), rather a geopolitical view of the world, where “Israel is *the* baddy, must be opposed and if, as a consequence, there is antisemitism then whilst its regrettable that’s what happens.”

      If you could make an elementary divorcement, for a moment, separate your views about the Middle East with those on the issue of antisemitism then you might see where your interlocutors are coming from.

      And in doing so, you would educate yourself on antisemitism, and these exchanges would be less acrimonious.

  32. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    “Contrary to what some of you have written or implied I have never said that anti-Semitism does not exist.” Given that you _did_ say that “Jews are now socially integrated at all levels, serious discrimination occurring these days mostly with regard to more recent non-European immigrants”, what’s the difference? The second comment is as close to saying that discrimination against Jews (and/or acts of antisemitism, to the extent that the two are different) either no longer happens or is insignificant. So, how come you didn’t say what you did say? And have you looked up the Community Security Trust’s Annual Reports on antisemitism in the UK. Bet you haven’t. The evidence would fatally undermine your claims.

    “But neither is it unreasonable to say that accusations of anti-Semitism are also used politically.” If so, how about some evidence, then, instead of bland, repeated assertions? Who has said it? When? What did they say? Proper references, please, not the usual unsubstantiated assertions.

    And your blanket statements about Israel’s military wickedness are entirely without context. How about a context, Carlo? How about 3000 Hamas rockets into Israel, all aimed indiscriminately at Israeli civilians (or are they legitimate targets?), which is a crime against humanity in itself. How about repeated warnings by Israel to Hamas as to what would happen if these rocket attacks didn’t stop? How about Hamas’s use of civilians as human shields? Hamas’s use of UN buildings both to store munitions and as rocket-launching bases? How about Judge Goldstone’s statement that all this happened and that Hamas were at least as guilty as Israel for any offences against international law?

    However, no surprise here, unlike the IDF, Hamas have carried out no inquiries into these allegations by Goldstone. That’s zero, zilch, nada, Carlo.

    Proper answers to these and all other points aimed at you would be the least you can do. Note, in line with your failure to provide this up to now, I’m not confident you’re about to start.

    Oh, and while I’m here, I don’t see a source for that claim that “‘Roger Cukierman, leader of France’s Jewish community at the beginning of the 21st century, proudly related to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz how he recommended to Ariel Sharon that Israel quell the harsh international criticism of its October 2000 massacre by opening a new front: the front of anti-Semitism. . .” To me, that makes it suspect. And it is the source itself that fails to offer a link. We need this if we aren’t to suspect that it’s a fabrication.

    Which wouldn’t be the first time this has happened: Tsarist Secret Police and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, anyone?

  33. modernityblog Says:

    Carlo,

    I have followed this discussion with interest and wonder if you have yet informed yourself about antisemitism in Britain?

    I am talking about physical assaults on Jews in Britain. You would do well to educate yourself in this matter:

    639 antisemitic incidents were recorded by CST in 2010. This is the second-highest annual total since CST began recording antisemitic incidents in 1984.”

    639, that is nearly two every day.

    Some 53+ antisemitic attacks every month.

    For more information, see http://www.thecst.org.uk/index.cfm?Content=7

    Downloadable here as a PDF, http://www.thecst.org.uk/docs/Incidents%20Report%202010.pdf

    I would particularly recommend reading the Antisemitic Discourse Report 2009, http://www.thecst.org.uk/docs/Antisemitic%20Discourse%20Report%20for%202009%20-%20web1.pdf

  34. Blacklisted Dictator Says:

    Carlo,
    So you conclude that it is accurate to dub Israel a “Nazi” state (one up from an apartheid state?). But do you believe that there are any differences between Hitler’s Germany and Netanyahu’s Israel? Is Israel’s persecution of the Palestinians really identical to Hitler’s extermination of the Jews?

    And just for the record, should Jews be concerned about the anti-semitic content in the Hamas Charter? Must we assume that it is uninfluenced by Nazi ideology?

  35. Carlo Says:

    I overlooked a request by Brian Goldfarb:

    + Israel seeks to represent Diaspora Jewry because no-on else does. And does so in part _because_ of the Holocaust, when the world signally failed to do very much about the murder of Europe’s Jews when they had the chance. Can we have a response to _that_ point, please? I thought not. +

    Representatives surely require a mandate. If half of the world’s Jews live in Israel, as someone here reminded us, the other half choose to live elsewhere. While many Jewish community leaders express unqualified support for Israel and what it does, there is growing discontent among those Jews who do not endorse Israel’s excesses, hence the emergence of J Street and J Call, not to mention Jewish Voice for Peace and other more radical Jewish organizations.
    The world’s response to Nazism was first to defeat it militarily and secondly to introduce international human rights law. Slaughter of innocent civilians because of their ethnicity or religion is wrong whoever the victims or the perpetrators or whatever the pretext. I’m sorry, but Jews have no exclusive rights in the matter.
    There were genocides before the Holocaust and there have been others since, but the flaw in the Zionist procedure was to concentrate Jews in a territory that was not “a land without a people”. Martin Buber and others urged the newcomers to at least make an effort to come to terms with the indigenous populace and culture, but few listened.
    Are increasing numbers of Jews today wrong to object to being “represented” by Israel’s government of reactionary businessmen, generals and religious bigots?

    + And your blanket statements about Israel’s military wickedness are entirely without context. How about a context, Carlo? +

    The context is Israel’s refusal to comply with its obligations under the fourth Geneva Convention and its preference for military responses to a problem that is fundamentally political.

    + Oh, and while I’m here, I don’t see a source for that claim that “‘Roger Cukierman, leader of France’s Jewish community at the beginning of the 21st century, proudly related to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz how he recommended to Ariel Sharon that Israel quell the harsh international criticism of its October 2000 massacre by opening a new front: the front of anti-Semitism. . .” To me, that makes it suspect. And it is the source itself that fails to offer a link. We need this if we aren’t to suspect that it’s a fabrication. +

    I regret the poor quality of the text but the original source if you will is the writer Michel Warschawsky. He arrived in Israel at age 16 from a religious family in Strasbourg. Initially a Talmudic student, he eventually became a radical leftist. He has authored several books about his adopted country and some are available in English. Try his “Towards an Open Tomb – The Crisis of Israeli Society”, Monthly Review Press, 2004. He has no need to fabricate evidence of political manipulation – plenty is readily available.

    Take Hamas, for example, and the way that it was originally encouraged by Israel in order to undermine the PLO (much as the original Taliban was nurtured in Afghanistan by Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and the CIA to counter the Soviets). Here’s a link: http://globalresearch.ca/articles/ZER403A.html The historian mentioned, Ze’ev Sternhell, is not normally suspected of fabricating evidence either.

    I’ve now looked at the CST report and find it pretty shocking. It’s not to diminish its significance though to wonder how the figures for hate acts against Jews in Britain compare with those involving other minorities – the general climate of inter-communal relations being relevant “context”.

    + “Contrary to what some of you have written or implied I have never said that anti-Semitism does not exist.” Given that you _did_ say that “Jews are now socially integrated at all levels, serious discrimination occurring these days mostly with regard to more recent non-European immigrants”, what’s the difference? +

    The difference, Brian, is that between established citizens, educated, employed, and housed – and people on society’s margins, who often even lack adequate documentation. The first can count on the authorities for support, the latter have reason to mistrust them and are more vulnerable to exploitation and abuse.

    Despite the fondness here for mind-reading and palimpsests, I didn’t say that Israel was the equivalent of Nazi Germany. I quoted Leibowitz as an Israeli sage saddened what he’d seen in his lifetime and horrified by the direction in which he saw Israel headed. While Israel has several fascistic characteristics, its inhabitants fortunately still have the right to express dissent and the freedom to demonstrate (though for Arabs it can be costly), and they also enjoy a free press.

    • conchovor Says:

      ‘The context is Israel’s refusal to comply with its obligations under the fourth Geneva Convention and its preference for military responses to a problem that is fundamentally political.’

      That is just complete rubbish. Other states are far worse offenders, few of which face anything like the same existential threats to their existence, short, medium and long term. I am no fan of Netanyahu. I think he is complacent and, for a smart guy, very stupid. But Ehud Olmert, for instance, with Tzipi Livni, attempted to negotiate with Mahmoud Abbas on the basis of the 2003 Geneva Accords, generally approved even by Yassir Arafat, and were rebuffed. That says little hopeful about the Palestinian Arab leadership’s willingness to reach a negotiated solution. Likewise the P.L.O.’s NY representative’s refusal to sign about a year ago the principle ‘2 states for 2 peoples’, lest one of those peoples be interpreted as the Jewish one.

      It may well be that the BDS movement has encouraged Fatah and Hamas that, if they wait long enough, they can bring about the end of Zionism and the Jewish state, by other means. In which case, why bother negotiate.

      But that hardly gives Israel incentive to look to anything but its own best interests, as it sees it, and its survival.

  36. conchovor Says:

    ‘Take Hamas, for example, and the way that it was originally encouraged by Israel in order to undermine the PLO ‘

    Even is that is the case (and Hamas’ origins are in the original Palestinian Arab nationalist leadership, which was Palestinian Muslim Brotherhood), Hamas didn’t prove very grateful, did it? Professing eternal jihad until Israel’s extinction wasn’t a good way to thank Israel, was it?

    Characters like you are constantly complaining that Israel should let Hamas be because it was democratically elected and thus representative. Now you’re complaining about Israel’s having acted as its midwife.

  37. conchovor Says:

    ‘There were genocides before the Holocaust and there have been others since, but the flaw in the Zionist procedure was to concentrate Jews in a territory that was not “a land without a people”.’

    a) what has A to do with B and

    b) why state B in the first place?

    So what? You are clearly implying, insinuating something by that statement, but it in a very cowardly way i.e. Jewish exceptialism.

  38. conchovor Says:

    ‘Representatives surely require a mandate. If half of the world’s Jews live in Israel, as someone here reminded us, the other half choose to live elsewhere. ‘

    So what?

    The other half, mostly in America, are descended from those European cultural Christians effectively drove out up to 1914?

    They were regarded not as properly nationally Europeans, but nationally Jews/Judeans, or ‘Palestinians’, too.

    Before 1900, 90% of the world’s Jews lived in Europe. Now it’s about 12%.

    ‘there is growing discontent among those Jews who do not endorse Israel’s excesses’

    i.e. Jewish support for Israel is nuanced, as it always has been. But the vast majority remain highly sympathetic and pro-Zionist, albeit a lot more nuanced than antisemites make out.

  39. Blacklisted Dictator Says:

    Carlo writes: “but the flaw in the Zionist procedure was to concentrate Jews in a territory that was not “a land without a people”.

    Where should Jews have gone? Should they have stayed where they were?

    • Paul M Says:

      BD,

      That’s just Carlo groping around for more diversions from the issue of antisemitism. It falls apart as quickly as most of his other tries.

      My personal view is that people who say the surviving Jews post-WWII should have passed up their one chance of self-determination and just started over again where they were are saying no more than “Shame about the Holocaust. Better luck next time.”

      Perhaps he just thinks we should have picked somewhere like the Atacama, Queen Maud Land or South Georgia. What’s wrong with those places, after all?

  40. Absolute Observer Says:

    Modernity gets it quite right……..again!!

    That’s the problem with people like Carlo…………
    Notice how he has tried to shift the discussion from antisemitism and its study to the hackneyed cliches he makes about Israel.
    Carlo accuses Jews of raising antisemitism as a “ruse” to silence critics of Israel. But in fact he shows the truth is the opposite.
    He answers questions of antisemitism with cliched criticisms of Israel.

    One could even say that he raises the question of Israel to silence those who dare raise the question of antisemitism.

    “The difference, Brian, is that between established citizens, educated, employed, and housed – and people on society’s margins, who often even lack adequate documentation. The first can count on the authorities for support, the latter have reason to mistrust them and are more vulnerable to exploitation and abuse”.

    Historically, modern antisemitism arose at precisely the moment when Jews became intergrated, assimilated and free from (formal) state discrimination, when they became “established citizens, educated, employed, and housed”.
    Antisemitism was first coined as a term exactly when Jews were intergrated into the nation-state. On Carlo’s recokoning, one would not be able to raise the question of antisemitism in relation to the Dreyfuss trial (and, indeed, for the longest time, the “left” presented it in precisely the same way – it was an inter-class struggle that had nothing to do with Dreyfuss’ being Jewish. No doubt, Zola would have been accused of “sliencing debate” and perpetuauting a “ruse” to silence criticism of the ruling-class.

    However, I do find the idea that a society that produces the type of racism he is talking about (i.e. contemporary Islamophobia) is either incapable of producing antisemitism or that if there is the one there cannot be the other.

    Antisemtism, Islamophobia, racism based on “colour” et, etc. are universal aspects of contemporary society. That does not mean, as Carlo implies, that the causes for each can be reduced as a cause for all and those that does not fit, excluded as a “ruse”.

    Typical unidimensional thinking that hides precisely what needs to be known.

    • Bill Says:

      And below he is still doing it. I can only presume that he believes that Israel justifies (or excuses or “explains”). I also have to assume that he thinks that feminism justifies misogyny, and that the rise of underrepresented groups in the workplace justifies racism.

      • Bill Says:

        And of course, the topic heading this thread has nothing to do with Israel, but rather shutting down a center whose job is to study antisemitism.

  41. Carlo Says:

    Conchover: Been rather busy, haven’t we? But you did lose your cool – descending to low invective. To use the expression you apply to states, there are “far worse offenders” than myself – which by your logic should absolve me. But what language I wonder do you reserve for them?

    My real “offence” of course is not backing the team, not seeing the conflict as though it’s an ethno-religious dispute between evenly matched adversaries – but as a geopolitical one – and measuring the realities against international legal instruments.

    Regarding Tzipi Livni and her outrageous rejection of international law, it’s not a question of interpretation. Her words were perfectly clear. That with Barak (who “called a halt” to the Taba talks) she may have sought negotiations based on the Geneva Accords changes nothing as far as that was concerned. Respect for international legal instruments is one thing, attempting to strike a deal (however praiseworthy) is another.

    Blacklisted Dictator asks: + Where should Jews have gone? Should they have stayed where they were? +
    Well, perhaps they should. Many former Israelis have had second thoughts and have gone to live in the US, Germany (!), and elsewhere.

    “According to the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics, as of 2005, 650,000 Israelis have left the country for over one year and not returned.” The great majority of these were Jews. In addition, polls show that at least 60% and as high as 80% of remaining Israeli Jews “sympathize with those who leave the country.” (http://www.counterpunch.org/davidson06152011.html)

    Paul: Regarding “the issue of antisemitism”, I tend to agree with what Anthony Lerman wrote in Haaretz in 2008, that: “Practically the entire business of studying and analyzing current anti-Semitism has been hijacked and debased by people lacking any serious expertise in the subject, whose principal aim is to excoriate Jewish critics of Israel and to promote the ‘anti-Zionism = anti-Semitism’ equation.” (http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/jews-attacking-jews-1.253684)

    • Blacklisted Dictator Says:

      Carlo,
      You seem to imply that Israelis should follow the example of some of their compatriots and start a new life in the US and Germany.

      Of course, Israel’s survival will ultimately depend on the Jews who stay, but you should accept the fact that, for the time being at least, the majority of them will remain. I would hope that they will be able to live in peace with the Palestinians, but if they can’t, it would be wrong to lay the blame solely at their feet. The sad truth is that most people in the Middle East are not entirely happy with their lives. One has only to look at Syria, Libya, Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Yemen etc to conclude that the cause of such dissatisfaction cannot rationally be blamed on the Jews. It is about time that Israel’s detractors around the world started to ask some meaningful questions about the multiplicity of problems in the Middle East. I know that you will be reluctant to do so because you feel so passionately about human rights, but you should give it a try and start thinking “out of the PC box”.

    • conchovor Says:

      ‘Conchover: Been rather busy, haven’t we? But you did lose your cool – descending to low invective.’

      I shouldn’t have. I apologise. It hardly invalidates my arguments, though.

      ‘To use the expression you apply to states, there are “far worse offenders” than myself – which by your logic should absolve me.’

      Of cussing me, perhaps. Am I intent on dissolving your state, though?

      ‘But what language I wonder do you reserve for them?’

      I probably would dispense with words, at that stage.

      ‘My real “offence” of course is not backing the team,’

      Why? Should you have been on ‘my’ team? Were you ever on my ‘team’? What ‘team’ are you on? Did I suggest you were or should/shouldn’t be?

      ‘not seeing the conflict as though it’s an ethno-religious dispute between evenly matched adversaries’

      Why? Am I?

      ‘– but as a geopolitical one’

      Am I not?

      ‘ – and measuring the realities against international legal instruments.’

      So am I.

      ‘Regarding Tzipi Livni and her outrageous rejection of international law,’

      Well, I beg to differ on that. The Geneva Accord is not that.

      ‘ it’s not a question of interpretation.’

      Of course it is.

      ‘Her words were perfectly clear.’

      Yeah. The Geneva Accord.

      ‘ That with Barak (who “called a halt” to the Taba talks)’

      No.

      ‘she may have sought negotiations based on the Geneva Accords changes nothing as far as that’

      i.e. you

      ‘was concerned. Respect for international legal instruments is one thing, attempting to strike a deal (however praiseworthy) is another.’

      Nope.

    • conchovor Says:

      ‘as though it’s an ethno-religious dispute’

      It is, at least in part

      ‘between evenly matched adversaries’

      It is fairly even: Israel is militarily stronger, Arabs far more numerous. The net balance keeps Israel in existence, more or less.

  42. Paul M Says:

    Regarding “the issue of antisemitism”, I tend to agree with what Anthony Lerman wrote in Haaretz in 2008, that: “Practically the entire business of studying and analyzing current anti-Semitism has been hijacked and debased by people lacking any serious expertise in the subject, whose principal aim is to excoriate Jewish critics of Israel and to promote the ‘anti-Zionism = anti-Semitism’ equation.”

    No doubt you do, but the issue at hand is not one of studying and analyzing antisemitism but of recognising it. You came into this thread complaining of Jewish and Israeli ethnocentrism and bad faith. Surely there is important work to be done regarding the desperate determination to make slanders like these, rather than to acknowledge and deal with the realities experienced by Jews. There are penetrating studies to be written on why educated, right-thinking people who wouldn’t dream of denigrating black and latino complaints of colour prejudice, Muslim concerns about Islamophobia or women’s experiences with the nuances of sexism, are so completely comfortable shutting Jewish perceptions out of consideration, even as they shut Jews out of participation. That’s work for scholars and with or without YIISA I hope they dig into it, but unless antisemitism is radically different from colour prejudice, Islamophobia, sexism and every other form of bigotry, it does not require an academic’s seal of authenticity to certify each real world instance of its existence.

    Your options are these:
    1 – Accept that the complaint is sincere and examine it carefully;
    1a – Argue persuasively that the complaint is misguided;
    1b – Accept that it has a genuine basis and do something about it;
    2 – Prove bad faith;
    3 – Allege bad faith without proof and be known as a bigot.

    So far, you’re clinging tightly to 3.

    • Bill Says:

      There are penetrating studies to be written on why educated, right-thinking people who wouldn’t dream of denigrating black and latino complaints of colour prejudice, Muslim concerns about Islamophobia or women’s experiences with the nuances of sexism, are so completely comfortable shutting Jewish perceptions out of consideration, even as they shut Jews out of participation

      Indeed, Paul. We’re often confronted with the issue of internalizing sexism, racism and other areas (be it sex, race, religion, vet status and the other protected classifications). It’s a valid part of race studies and, dare-I-say more imporantly, HR best practices. I’ve brought it up here to other apologists and denialists of antisemitism before and they either dismiss it when applied to Jews or pretend that they have never heard of internalization of biases..

  43. History 101 Says:

    ‘Blacklisted Dictator asks: + Where should Jews have gone? Should they have stayed where they were? +
    Well, perhaps they should. Many former Israelis have had second thoughts and have gone to live in the US, Germany (!), and elsewhere”.

    Facts…….
    Those few that survived tried to stay in their country of birth on their return from the concentration camps and death camps.
    They were met with pogroms in Poland, anti-Jewish riots in Belgium, France and elsewhere.
    They were met with antisemitic persecution in the Soviet Union.
    They were met with disdain in Germany; accused of fleeing the country in its time of need.
    They were met in Holland and elsewhere by demands that they shut up about their suffering.

    It is interesting to note that Carlo’s views on what Jews should have done in 1945 echoes that of the official Communist Party who, during the period of nazism, met Jewish immigrants to Palestine (illegal immigrants following the British quotas) with leaflets telling them to go back to Germany.

    Only someone without any sense of historical knowledge or sensitivity would compare a current Israeli’s decision to emigrate from Israel with those who having survived the concentration camps and the death camps, tried to make their way, first, back to the country of origin and, when that was forbidden them, made their way to Palestine. Having been told they had no place in Europe, they were then told they had no place in Palestine. And, at that time, that meant no place in the world, period.

  44. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    Carlo is proving a most interesting (but, unfortunately, not in a good sense) character. He responds (after numerous promptings) to some specific requests from me. To start with, but not at the beginning of his comment (of 18 June), he quotes me – repeating myself – ‘Oh, and while I’m here, I don’t see a source for that claim that “‘Roger Cukierman, leader of France’s Jewish community at the beginning of the 21st century, proudly related to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz how he recommended to Ariel Sharon that Israel quell the harsh international criticism of its October 2000 massacre by opening a new front: the front of anti-Semitism. . .” ‘

    Carlo has not only failed to provide a source in Ha’aretz for the quote, he now cites one Michel Warschawsky (his spelling). When I go onto Amazon, both .com & .co.uk, I find no trace of this person, let alone the title in question, even under variant spellings of the surname. If the original reference was in Ha’aretz, then Warschawsky would have referenced it in 2004.

    I begin to suspect the absence of any such article. Furthermore, a google search on Roger Cukierman failed to turn up any references to this article, either, in the first 3 search pages, before the results start to repeat themselves. Curiouser and curiouser. Then I remembered a long effort, some months ago, to get another commenter to properly reference a claim he was making. When he finally did, it turned out to be to Tikkun Olam, which had put a spin on an article in Ha’aretz (to which it linked), not a serious spin, but it was there, and had also omitted an important element in the original article. But Tikkun Olam’s spin was as nothing compared with that of the commenter. Neither the Tikkun Olam article, let alone the original, read anything like his.

    Perhaps that’s why we can’t get a proper reference out of Carlo. Until he does, he is, at best, being mischievous. At worst, I won’t say in polite company. And while I’m in this general area, I turned up a reference to what I assume is Carlo’s massacre in some 30 seconds. It was to a Tikkun Olam article – it’s linked to in my response to Alan S. above. If I can do _that_, why can’t _you_?

    Elsewhere, Carlo says that: “There were genocides before the Holocaust and there have been others since, but the flaw in the Zionist procedure was to concentrate Jews in a territory that was not “a land without a people”. ” Both parts of this sentence are true. So what? Does this mean that we must therefore diminish the importance of the murder of a third of the world population of Jews and some two-thirds (if we include Russian Jews) of Europe’s Jews? If you really believe that, Carlo, say so. As for the second part, also true: the land was not without people. There is solid archaeological and other historical evidence for the presence of Jews in the land between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean (and beyond, on the Golan Heights, for example) for some 3000 years – and I’ll repeat the argument from an earlier comment of mine if you insist. And it wasn’t the Jews of the Yishuv who rejected the UN Partition Plan. Ditto to the sentence immediately before that. And as for: “Martin Buber and others urged the newcomers to at least make an effort to come to terms with the indigenous populace and culture, but few listened.” I don’t know which “others” you are talking about, but, again, a quick google search turned up nothing even vaguely resembling this from Buber. Linkable reference, please, Carlo, for what is fast becoming a farrago of unverifiable assertions. And many leaders of the Jewish Agency, including David Ben-Gurion, tried to do just this, without success. I can’t lay my hands on the exact source, but it’s a book of essays by Prof. Dina Porat of Tel Aviv Uni, and I’ll find it if you insist.

    “I’ve now looked at the CST report and find it pretty shocking.” Well, good for you. I notice, however, that you don’t retreat one iota from your original statement on antisemitism in the UK. As for your statement below _that_ one, that “The difference, Brian, is that between established citizens, educated, employed, and housed – and people on society’s margins, who often even lack adequate documentation. The first can count on the authorities for support, the latter have reason to mistrust them and are more vulnerable to exploitation and abuse.” (in response to my deconstruction of your assertions that Jews are less (or almost not) discriminated against in the UK and evidence to the contrary), how come, therefore, that the Jewish community in the UK has to provide for its communal buildings out of its own funds? This is hardly being able to “count on the authorities for support”.

    Others have responded to other parts of your non-answer to me.

    What this all amounts to is that you, Carlo, are repeating assertions, over and over, and failing, conspicuously, to provide evidence for them, except _very_ occasionally. And we don’t take counterpunch very seriously here, either. You’ve got to better than that.

    You have conspicuously failed to give any reason for us to take you seriously: no evidence, no argument based on evidence, merely a mass of assertions; and even those assertions linked to sources appear to be suspect sources.

    I think that you are, at best, mischievious; at worst? I’ve already said I’m not prepared to dsay in polite company.

    • Brian Goldfarb Says:

      “the Jewish community in the UK has to provide for its communal buildings out of its own funds?” should, of course, read “…has to provide _security_ for its communal buildings out of…etc”

  45. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    Further to my last major comment: Warschawski (not y) has now turned up on Amazon.co.uk. Guess what: no mention in the index of Cukierman. If Warschawski is “the original source if you will is the writer Michel Warschawsky” then why isn’t he mentioned in the index. If you think I’m going to spend £1126 just because that’s the only source you can find (strange that there’s no link anywhere to Ha’aretz), you are deluding yourself.

    Warschawski does have a short, 4-5 page, chapter entitled “…And to the Jenin Massacre”. Given how much this “event” has now been downgraded to relatively few deaths, most of which were of Hamas fighters, this starts to make him look like an unreliable witness.

    In summary, I’m still waiting for a reliable link to the Ha’aretz report for Cukierman’s alleged letter to Sharon.

  46. Carlo Says:

    Blacklisted Dictator says: + You seem to imply that Israelis should follow the example of some of their compatriots and start a new life in the US and Germany. +
    I’m accused here of implying many things, whereas most of the time I simply make observations and draw attention to items that other posters prefer to ignore. I’ve no objection to Jewish Israelis staying put, except for those established illegally on Arab land.

    Paul M says: + the issue at hand is not one of studying and analyzing antisemitism but of recognising it +
    Of course I recognize it. Attacks on Jewish people because of their religion or ethnicity, and attacks on Jewish property occur and are abhorrent. As for anti-Semitic remarks, they’re not new in British discourse – which is not to justify them either.

    Brian Goldfarb says: + “Martin Buber and others urged the newcomers to at least make an effort to come to terms with the indigenous populace and culture, but few listened.” I don’t know which “others” you are talking about, but, again, a quick google search turned up nothing even vaguely resembling this from Buber. Linkable reference, please. +
    Brian also complains: + I’m still waiting for a reliable link to the Ha’aretz report for Cukierman’s alleged letter to Sharon. +

    Well, I’ll have to concede you that one Brian – after a quick look I can’t find the piece either. But the Ha’aretz retrieval system has improved and it may turn up. On the other hand, the statement may have been in the Hebrew edition and, as you will know, not everything from the Hebrew Ha’aretz is translated into English. In any case, I don’t believe Warschawski would concoct a source. He writes, by the way, in Arabic, English, French and Hebrew.

    It may sound a bit old-fashioned, but does anyone here remember books? They’re made out of paper. The world is a little wider than linkable references Brian. I just picked up a real, not virtual, copy of Martin Buber’s “A Land of Two Peoples”. It’s actually a compilation of articles and speeches, edited by Paul Mendes-Flor, published by OUP in 1983. The copy I have is a University of Chicago edition with a new preface by PM-F and was printed in 2005. Opening it almost at random, I found:

    We are now faced, however, with the added responsibility for that nation which has become our neighbour in Palestine and which in so many respects shares a common fate with us. No contradiction could be greater, if we continue to preserve the idea of our internal mission, than for us to build a true communal life within our own community, while at the same time excluding the other inhabitants of the country from participation, even though their lives and hopes, like ours, are dependent on the future of the country.
    . . . It is said that when the Zionist leader Max Nordau first heard that there were Arabs in Palestine, he rushed excitedly to Herzl proclaiming: “I didn’t know that! If that is the case, then we are doing an injustice.”

    That’s on page 86 of the UOC edition, in a speech called The National Home and National Policy in Palestine, delivered in October 1929. I didn’t make it up.

  47. Paul M Says:

    “Paul M says: + the issue at hand is not one of studying and analyzing antisemitism but of recognising it +
    Of course I recognize it. Attacks on Jewish people because of their religion or ethnicity, and attacks on Jewish property occur and are abhorrent. As for anti-Semitic remarks, they’re not new in British discourse – which is not to justify them either.”

    And when people point out to you that there is an antisemitic contribution and an antisemitic aspect to anti-Zionism you refuse to see it, accusing them of bad faith and manipulation. And when they point out to you the hypocrisy and bigotry inherent in such a dismissal of concerns, you become not just blind but deaf: You have yet to deal directly with that central issue, which is after all one of the primary focuses of Engage.

    In case you missed them, I repeat the choices I described above, and give you one more to pick from:

    1 – Accept that the complaint is sincere and examine it carefully;
      1a – Argue persuasively that the complaint is misguided;
      1b – Accept that it has a genuine basis and do something about it;
    2 – Prove bad faith;
    3 – Allege bad faith without proof and be known as a bigot
      3a – Carefully avoid the issue thereafter, confirming that you understand it and have no intention of facing it.

  48. modernityblog Says:

    “Of course I recognize it. Attacks on Jewish people because of their religion or ethnicity, and attacks on Jewish property occur and are abhorrent. As for anti-Semitic remarks, they’re not new in British discourse – which is not to justify them either.”

    Do you really recognise it?

    From your extensive contributions here I am left with the feeling that any of your condemnations of antisemitism will soon be followed by a “but” or something similar, as in your comment of:

    “I’ve now looked at the CST report and find it pretty shocking. It’s not to diminish its significance though to wonder how the figures for hate acts against Jews in Britain compare with those involving other minorities – the general climate of inter-communal relations being relevant “context”. “

    When you finally managed to read about antisemitism in Britain, after prompting, you then gently detract from the issue by wondering about comparisons.

    Carlo, you are NOT serious about antisemitism in Britain, this is evidenced by three factors:

    1. Your inability to find out the basic facts, before discussing them.

    2. Your persistent “ah, but” approach to the topic.

    3. Whilst you believe physical attacks on Jews and Jewish property are abhorrent, you haven’t addressed in any meaningful way the issue of intellectual antisemitism, that is the discourse which provides the rationale for these attacks in the first place.

    Carlo, if you earnest then address the issue of the question of discourse and the intellectual underpinnings to these physical attacks.

  49. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    “Brian also complains” No I don’t, that’s your attempt to reduce the effect of my comment. What I’m doing is demanding, for about the fifth time now, a proper source for your alleged Cukierman comment. And what do we get? “Well, I’ll have to concede you that one Brian – after a quick look I can’t find the piece either.” _That_ is patronising, Carlo. What you really mean is that it never existed and you trusted to luck that we’d never twig. But we did and we do: you are a joke, and to assert that you are doing is simply making observations is less than honest of you. You clearly arrived here to make mischief, with no intention of backing up any claim you made with evidence. Especially when you go on to say that not everything from Ha”aretz is translated into English. This is evasion on a massive scale: the Warschawski book is available in English and therefore such an important point would be referenced by him in English – or haven’t you bothered to search the book.

    Perhaps it’s all an invention by you.

    Unless, of course, you’re now going to tell us that you, Carlo, read all these languages.

    In short, I don’t believe a word of it. And I’m pretty dubious about your Buber quote, come to that. All rather sudden, this rush of “aw, shucks, you found me out” type confessions and, “look, here’s that quote by Buber, from this obscure book I just happen to have acquired, by the merest chance and greatest good fortune. And if it’s in your possession, perhaps you’s enlighten us with the original printing information? It is after all, “a compilation of articles and speeches, edited by Paul Mendes-Flor”, so there should be a printing history. And I don’t believe that you opened it “almost at random”. Far too convenient.

    You will gather that I remain a huge sceptic of Carlo’s scholarship.

    And, BTW, patronising people who are making demands of your for information, etc, is a sign of weakness: it demonstrates that you don’t have answers.

  50. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    Further, I notice that Carlo ignores all the other points I have made and the requests (demands by now, given his reticence in answering) for evidence. Among other things, he ignores my and others comments on antisemitism in the UK, references to the continuous presence of Jews in Israel/Judea over the last 3000 years, no comment on the eliminationist nature of Hamas and Hezbollah…

    The list goes on, but that will do for a start.

    In other words, Carlo is just trying to wind us up and is hardly serious about his assertions, otherwise he would produce something closer to evidence.

    But, in that, he resembles so many who visit here, intent on refuting us with the sheer force of their unrooted argument. As I said much earlier, unrooted assertions butter no parsnips here. Proper evidence and argument based on that evidence does.

  51. Carlo Says:

    Paul M writes:
    ++ when people point out to you that there is an antisemitic contribution and an antisemitic aspect to anti-Zionism you refuse to see it ++

    No I don’t. It’s simply that I see it from a different perspective. And I don’t accept that the doubtful motivations of some invalidate the legitimate convictions of others.
    While there can be an anti-Semitic aspect to some anti-Zionism, I pointed out that Jews aren’t obliged to give blanket approval either to Zionism or to its consequences. That’s why I cited the Bund, Martin Buber, Yeshayahu Leibowitz and Michel Warschawski.
    Regarding Buber, here’s another quote from the book I mentioned. Brian Goldfarb doubts its existence, and asks for printing details, although I indicated earlier that the Oxford University Press brought out the first edition in 1983.

    ++ What is really needed by each of the two peoples living one alongside the other, and one within the other, in Palestine is self-determination, autonomy, the chance to decide for itself, but this most certainly does not mean that each is in need of a state in which it will be the sovereign. The Arab population does not need an Arab state in order to develop its potential freely, nor does the Jewish population need a Jewish state to accomplish this purpose. Its realization on both sides can be guaranteed within the framework of a joint bi-national socio-political entity, in which each side will be responsible for the particular matters pertaining to it, and both together will participate in the ordering of their common concerns. [. . .] ++

    That’s from a talk given by Buber on Dutch radio in June 1947, entitled: “Two Peoples in Palestine”.

    Brian G writes:
    ++ Warschawski (not y) has now turned up on Amazon.co.uk. ++

    Great sleuthing Brian! Scholarship indeed. If you’re looking for book titles why do you confine yourself to Amazon? A search for Michel Warschawski at the British Library website, for example, gives nine results.
    I didn’t suggest that there was a book by Warschawski that mentioned Cukierman, I said simply that Warschawski existed and that I considered him a credible writer who didn’t need to fabricate source material.
    To enlighten you further on Martin Buber, as you seem a little text-starved, even Wikipedia offers a brief aperçu:

    ++ Already in the early 1920s Martin Buber started advocating a binational Jewish-Arab state, stating that the Jewish people should proclaim “its desire to live in peace and brotherhood with the Arab people and to develop the common homeland into a republic in which both peoples will have the possibility of free development.”
    Buber rejected the idea of Zionism as just another national movement and wanted instead to see the creation of an exemplary society; a society which would not, he said, be characterised by Jewish domination of the Arabs. It was necessary for the Zionist movement to reach a consensus with the Arabs even at the cost of the Jews remaining a minority in the country. In 1925 he was involved in the creation of the organisation Brit Shalom (Covenant of Peace), which advocated the creation of a binational state, and throughout the rest of his life he hoped and believed that Jews and Arabs one day would live in peace in a joint nation. Nevertheless he was connected with decades of friendship to Zionists and philosophers like Chaim Weizmann, Max Brod, Hugo Bergman and Felix Weltsch, who were close friends of his from old European times in Prague, Berlin and Vienna to the Jerusalem of the 1940s, 50s, and 60s.
    After the Israeli state gained independence in 1948, Buber advocated Israel’s participation in a federation of “Near East” states wider than just Palestine. ++

    Brian says I ignore references to:
    ++ the continuous presence of Jews in Israel/Judea over the last 3000 years ++ and
    ++ the eliminationist nature of Hamas and Hezbollah…++

    So what legal rights does such continuous presence confer on others professing a similar religion or ethnicity in other parts of the world? In which statutes are such legal rights set out?
    While holding no brief for either Hamas or Hezbollah I’d remind you that both entities emerged as a consequence of Israeli policies and Israeli military action. Whatever the organizations’ nature, Israel is clearly responsible for their very existence.

    modernityblog observes:
    ++ When you finally managed to read about antisemitism in Britain, after prompting, you then gently detract from the issue by wondering about comparisons. ++

    Are anti-Semitic incidents in the UK not comparable then to other acts of intolerance in Britain? Should such incidents be observed only in strict isolation? Why set them apart from other hate crimes?

  52. modernityblog Says:

    “Are anti-Semitic incidents in the UK not comparable then to other acts of intolerance in Britain? Should such incidents be observed only in strict isolation? Why set them apart from other hate crimes?”

    Carlo,

    Well, you can compare everything with everything else if you want. It won’t tell you much, you’ll end up with very generalised results and it certainly won’t be scholarly, but that is your method.

    It is very clear from your statements and ignorance on this topic (needing to be directed to the reports, etc) that you have no intrinsic interest in antisemitism, rather you have a geopolitical outlook which takes precedence over humans.

    There’s no problem in that, if you are candid about your intent, but to feign interest in antisemitism merely to use it against Israelis, as you do, is intellectually cheap, obvious and rather boring.

  53. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    “Great sleuthing Brian! Scholarship indeed.” Stop patronising me, Carlo, you’re the one it makes looks small. Furthermore, it doesn’t add to the sum of knowledge. I notice that we merely have a further quote from the Buber book. I could claim quotes all day long, especially given that nothing like any of them turn up on websites devoted to Martin Buber.

    “I didn’t suggest that there was a book by Warschawski that mentioned Cukierman”. No? In that case what’s this? Scotch mist? “I regret the poor quality of the text but the original source if you will is the writer Michel Warschawsky.” Either you’re telling us that the source for Cukierman quote is Warschawski, or you are deliberately misleading us, hoping the sleight of hand will confuse us. Well, it doesn’t. Trouble is, there isn’t an acceptable way of saying that you are being economical with the truth other than using the actual words. And we still have evidence for the Cuikerman quote – or many other alleged quotes, either, come to that.

    You are either, to repeat myself, deliberately distorting what people have actually said or written, or manufactured what you claim people have said or written to try and bolster your case, or you actually don’t give a damn about the truth and are being totally mischievous. Whichever it is, you consistently fail to provide anything like sources, you insult and patronise us. Frankly, I think you are a charlatan, Carlo.

    You then have the temerity to write this: “Brian says I ignore references to:
    ++ the continuous presence of Jews in Israel/Judea over the last 3000 years ++ and
    ++ the eliminationist nature of Hamas and Hezbollah…++

    So what legal rights does such continuous presence confer”

    Well, given that you said ‘the flaw in the Zionist procedure was to concentrate Jews in a territory that was not “a land without a people”’, I was merely pointing out that the Land of Israel, the Two Kingdoms of Israel and Judah, Judea, Palestina (as the Romans dubbed it), the Turkish province of Southern Syria and the British Mandate territory of Palestine had _always_ had a Jewish population over that 3000 years, I agree that the land wasn’t “without people”, but very much among them were Jews. Probably _not_ the people you were thinking of, Carlo. Further, the reference to Hamas and Hezbollah and their eliminationist Charters was to point out that, while one doesn’t make peace with one’s friends, but with one’s enemies, those enemies have got to be willing to come to a settlement, not just sit there vowing to destroy you.

    Or do you have another interpretation of the Hamas and Hezbollah Charters, Carlo? That they’re joking, perhaps? They don’t really mean it? That they are really loveable people who don’t terrorise those among whom they sit?

    And the continuous presence points to the reality that Israel is the historical homeland of the Jews, and that they are far from interlopers. If anything, it is the Arabs who are the “people come lately.”

    You say “Are anti-Semitic incidents in the UK not comparable then to other acts of intolerance in Britain?” Actually, given the number of such incidents in the UK, it is reasonable to wonder if such incidents are, actually, on a higher scale, given comparative numbers. And anyway, you were the one who sought to diminish to the point of invisibility the scale of antisemitism in the UK. But perhaps, as always, you have a different take on what you wrote: you _really_ meant something else entirely. Like I use to tell my students, I can only mark what they actually write, not what they thought they’d written or what they wished they’d written. We are commenting on what you actually write, not what you pretend, later, you wrote. Thus the continual stream of quotes from earlier comments of yours. And thus my final comment below:

    “I didn’t make it up.” How do we know, without sources?

  54. Paul M Says:

    Paul M writes:
    ++ when people point out to you that there is an antisemitic contribution and an antisemitic aspect to anti-Zionism you refuse to see it ++

    No I don’t. It’s simply that I see it from a different perspective. And I don’t accept that the doubtful motivations of some invalidate the legitimate convictions of others.
    While there can be an anti-Semitic aspect to some anti-Zionism, I pointed out that Jews aren’t obliged to give blanket approval either to Zionism or to its consequences. That’s why I cited the Bund, Martin Buber, Yeshayahu Leibowitz and Michel Warschawski.

    To repeat: Your opening salvo here was that people who claim to see antisemitism in much of anti-Zionism were lying to control the debate. You have never recanted that position: Until your latest post you’ve never even been willing to confront it again, and even now you’re not so much addressing it as trying to sidle past it.

    Right after stating that you don’t refuse to see the antisemitism in current anti-Zionism, you’re off into the long grass again. You see antisemitism from a different perspective? What perspective is that, that makes it in some sense OK? Tell me more.

    Next up it’s doubtful motivations. Overlooking the choice of “doubtful”, it’s not simply about motivations and this has been pointed out over and over again. Engage and others have spent half a decade and more delivering a message that has long been understood in regard to other forms of prejudice: Motivations are often opaque, but effects are less so and they matter just as much. If you hold Israel to a standard that is unrelentingly more severe than that used to judge either its enemies or any other nation, and you can’t argue a compelling reason why you should do that, you are practicing a prejudiced form of anti-Zionism. Since Israel is the one and only state in which Jews have sovereignty and which a vast majority of Jews want, that means you are also acting in an antisemitic way regardless of your opinion of Jews. Why you would do that might be interesting to know, but it doesn’t change the effect. And as for doubtful motivations invalidating legitimate convictions, they only do that if the anti-Zionist movement doesn’t root them and their effects out.

    Finally, it’s Jews aren’t obliged to give blanket approval either to Zionism or to its consequences. That’s what’s known in the trade as a straw man, and it’s the refuge of someone who can’t argue a real position.

  55. Absolute Observer Says:

    “Are anti-Semitic incidents in the UK not comparable then to other acts of intolerance in Britain? Should such incidents be observed only in strict isolation? Why set them apart from other hate crimes?”

    Excellent observation.

    Although why it is directed at Jews is baffling.

    Jews have been arguing for the past decade that antisemitism should be recognised as a “hate-crime” akin to that suffered by other groups in the UK and elsewhere.
    Unfortunately, when Jews try to argue that antisemitism is of a kind with other hate crimes, people like Carlo come along and tells anti-racists not to believe them.
    People like Carlo tell anti-racists not to be concerned with antisemitism because, to quote his own words, it is used “as a ruse to defend Zionism”.
    People like Carlo tell anti-racists not to think too much about antisemitism since he believes that, “Practically the entire business of studying and analyzing current anti-Semitism has been hijacked and debased by people lacking any serious expertise in the subject, whose principal aim is to excoriate Jewish critics of Israel and to promote the ‘anti-Zionism = anti-Semitism’ equation”.

    At the same time as telling anti-racists that Jews are dishonest. are lying, are engaged in a sleight of hand when raising the question of antisemitism, he comes along to Engage and accuses Jews and non-Jews concerned with antisemitism of selfishness, of only caring about themselves, of not joining within a broader front of anti-racist struggles.
    As anyone with even a passing knowledge of the content of antisemitism knows, these views have a very long and very nasty pedigree.

    And people like Carlo think they have something pertinent to say about antisemitism and how to oppose it.

    You couldn’t make it up – even if you tried.

  56. Netshuke Says:

    In making antisemitism exceptional, Carlo makes of Jews the exception.

  57. Carlo Says:

    When I wrote: “Are anti-Semitic incidents in the UK not comparable then to other acts of intolerance in Britain? Should such incidents be observed only in strict isolation? Why set them apart from other hate crimes?” modernityblog replied: “Well, you can compare everything with everything else if you want. It won’t tell you much . . .” – which seems to be evading the issue.

    There was no wish to compare “everything with everything else” but to compare a category of hate crimes in Britain with other categories of British hate crimes. Why do you have a problem with this? Brian G even thinks it “reasonable to wonder if such incidents are, actually, on a higher scale, given comparative numbers”.

    Paul M objects to Israel being singled out for particular treatment compared with other states, yet when British anti-Semitism is the topic, it should apparently be considered in isolation from other British racial and religious prejudice. Odd, that.

    But Absolute Observer says no, “Jews have been arguing for the past decade that antisemitism should be recognised as a “hate-crime” akin to that suffered by other groups in the UK and elsewhere.” Yet no-one seems to want to provide comparative data.

    Brian Goldfarb claims: “Either you’re telling us that the source for Cukierman quote is Warschawski, or you are deliberately misleading us, hoping the sleight of hand will confuse us. Well, it doesn’t. Trouble is, there isn’t an acceptable way of saying that you are being economical with the truth other than using the actual words.”

    The actual words first mentioning Cukierman were in quotes and excerpted from an article (for which I supplied a link) written by Michel Warschawski. This surely was clear enough. I then expressed a belief that Warschawski was an honest and credible writer (and by implication, source). So where’s the untruth? Yet Brian Goldfarb has been worrying away at this ever since.

    Brian also asserts that I had the temerity to ask, referring to the enduring Jewish presence in Palestine: “So what legal rights does such continuous presence confer [?]”, but doesn’t answer the question. In reality, I asked: “So what legal rights does such continuous presence confer on others professing a similar religion or ethnicity in other parts of the world? . . .”

    His response is that: “the continuous presence points to the reality that Israel is the historical homeland of the Jews, and that they are far from interlopers”. But “Jews” in this case would then apply to the “continuously present” Jews – not to anyone else.

    Paul M makes an assertion that seems to represent a common belief here: “If you hold Israel to a standard that is unrelentingly more severe than that used to judge either its enemies or any other nation, and you can’t argue a compelling reason why you should do that, you are practicing [sic] a prejudiced form of anti-Zionism. Since Israel is the one and only state in which Jews have sovereignty and which a vast majority of Jews want, that means you are also acting in an antisemitic way regardless of your opinion of Jews.”

    A key phrase of course is “unrelentingly more severe”. In other words, you believe that too many anti-Zionists are unfairly biased in their assessment of Israel’s activities.

    What I suggest then is that you consult Western-based international human rights NGOs such as Amnesty International or Human Rights Watch that hold all states to the same standards.

    Or, regarding obligations under international law, you could measure Israel’s actions in the Occupied Territories against the requirements of the fourth Geneva Convention (to which Israel is a signatory).

    Concerning the “right of return” of Jews and Arabs, see the Universal Declaration of Human Rights or the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

    Targeted assassinations, use of stolen identities by hit squads operating abroad, and so forth could be similarly measured against the appropriate international legal instruments.

    If such research were undertaken in strict privacy however – thus excluding any obviously biased or “unrelentingly more severe” middlemen, mediocre scholars, or shootable messengers, between the expert intellectual-anti-Semitism detectors that you profess to be and the unvarnished facts – you might find yourselves at a loss. You would be unable to employ your considerable powers of textual analysis, deconstruction, comparison of thought patterns etc. to discredit a message. You would be confronted directly with the reality of Israel’s behaviour, and the global rules.

    Blacklisted Dictator claims that Leibowitz’s view that since 1967 Israel has been following a path comparable to that of Prussia “is an inherently antisemitic re-writing of history”.

    Well, take a look at this recent video of certain Israeli youth celebrating Jerusalem Day. Are you honestly not reminded of another time and place?

  58. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    You know, I don’t think that Carlo even reads (let alone remembers) his own comments. He clearly stated, in his very first comment on this thread, that: “Anti-Semitism used to mean discrimination against Jewish people. For example, in Britain in the 1950s, despite the lessons of WWII, some British landlords and some employers discriminated against Jews and many golf clubs and other institutions would admit only WASPs as members. That has all changed, Jews are now socially integrated at all levels, serious discrimination occurring these days mostly with regard to more recent non-European immigrants.” He now has the temerity, after three weeks of back and forth, to say that “There was no wish to compare “everything with everything else” but to compare a category of hate crimes in Britain with other categories of British hate crimes.”

    Managing to resist, with difficulty, the temptation to be extremely rude (it isn’t, after all, his fault that Carlo suffers from severe memory lapses), I will merely point out that comparing everything with everything else is _exactly_ what he has been doing these many days. And is still doing.

    It is though nothing we have said has been read accurately by Carlo. Or rather, he has read the words accurately, he just doesn’t interpret them correctly. But then, living (by his own confession) in France, maybe English is very much his second language, despite his apparent felicity in it.

    Evidence for this reading of Carlo is supplied by the following, further down his column: “The actual words first mentioning Cukierman were in quotes and excerpted from an article (for which I supplied a link) written by Michel Warschawski.” Actually, Carlo admitted in a later comment that he couldn’t find the Ha’aretz link (perhaps because there isn’t one and, yes, that means that I’m accusing Carlo of fabricating it, without any further evidence to the contrary), and then proceeded to fail to defend his claim about Warschawski. Carlo’s actual original words were “I regret the poor quality of the text but the original source if you will is the writer Michel Warschawsky.” The supposed link was the title of a book: no page reference, no footnote guide, nothing. No admitting that, in conventional intellectual terms, the last thing this was was an actual link. Heaven forfend we should get one of those.

    And as for ““So what legal rights does such continuous presence confer [?]“, but doesn’t answer the question. In reality, I asked: “So what legal rights does such continuous presence confer on others professing a similar religion or ethnicity in other parts of the world? . . .”, well, the first formulation by Carlo ended at confer. And if he wants to play _that_ game and ignore the continuous presence of Jews in the Holy Land (for want of a better term) from c1000BCE, then how can he justify the occupation and domination of Canada, the USA, the whole of the Caribbean, the whole of Central and South America, South Africa, Australia by groups from Europe (for the most part) at the expense of the original inhabitants? Answers in a PhD thesis, please.

    And this paragraph: “His response is that: “the continuous presence points to the reality that Israel is the historical homeland of the Jews, and that they are far from interlopers”. But “Jews” in this case would then apply to the “continuously present” Jews – not to anyone else.” actually makes no sense. Or it does, in a peculiar sense, because he would wish to exclude any Jews who were later arrivals. Does this mean that Carlo denies that Jews share an ethnicity? Or that, in some mysterious way, they exiled themselves, and therefore have forfeited any right to “return”? Or that by not returning in or immediately after 1948 or some unspecified time before, Jews in the Diaspora have so forfeited their rights? His answers would
    be fascinating on this topic. If he deigns to supply any.

    And almost finally, Carlo reposts a video that Amos posted here on another thread (we actually read all the articles and threads, Carlo, so we know what goes on) which shows that Jews (in this case Israeli Jews) can be as racist as any equivalent group of, say, French youth. And His point is? I suspect he doesn’t have one: Carlo is just trying to wind us up.

    I’ve got news for him: he’s not good enough to do that.

    I’m also fascinated to notice that Carlo manages to miss my comment that “Frankly, I think you are a charlatan, Carlo.” This is not meant as an insult, but as a character assessment.

  59. Carlo Says:

    If I overlooked Brian Goldfarb’s “character assessment”, it may have been because I didn’t take it too seriously. Public weighing machines on British railway station platforms once provided similar information. Do such machines still exist?

    Brian writes quite fluently. The trouble is that he’s a creative writer and on the topics discussed here, rather than being inventive, he’d do better to stick to facts.

    Take that book that he’s so obsessive about: it’s a figment of his imagination. There never was such a book. I’d mentioned a text, the text of an article (admittedly poorly translated), but not a book. I also supplied a link to the said article. Here it is again:
    http://www.alternativenews.org/english/index.php/blogs/michael-warschawski/3657-solidarity-with-palestinians-and-anti-semitism-

    Yet Brian persists: “The supposed link was the title of a book: no page reference, no footnote guide, nothing. No admitting that, in conventional intellectual terms, the last thing this was was an actual link. Heaven forfend we should get one of those.” Pure delirium.

    On another theme, I reminded Brian that I’d asked: “So what legal rights does such continuous presence confer on others professing a similar religion or ethnicity in other parts of the world? . . .”. Brian responded: “well, the first formulation by Carlo ended at confer.” Is Brian honestly mistaken here or is he counting on the likelihood of no-one checking? See my input (of June 24, 2011 at 12.20 am) above.

    Misquotation hardly advances Brian’s argument, when the original text is there for all to see – but it certainly undermines his credibility. What might his former students make of it?

    Brian continues: “And if he wants to play _that_ game and ignore the continuous presence of Jews in the Holy Land . . . “. But I didn’t ignore them. In fact I acknowledged their presence. Either he’s not bothering to check or he’s writing off the top of his nob. (Not in bad faith of course.)

    He goes on: “then how can he justify the occupation and domination of Canada, the USA, the whole of the Caribbean, the whole of Central and South America, South Africa, Australia by groups from Europe (for the most part) at the expense of the original inhabitants? Answers in a PhD thesis, please.”

    Surely “continuous presence” is one topic, colonization is another. Is Brian losing it completely, or is he just being careless?

    Brian further questions whether: “Carlo denies that Jews share an ethnicity? Or that, in some mysterious way, they exiled themselves, and therefore have forfeited any right to “return”? Or that by not returning in or immediately after 1948 or some unspecified time before, Jews in the Diaspora have so forfeited their rights? His answers would be fascinating on this topic.”

    Of course there are genetic links between some groups, but whether Jews “share an ethnicity” globally, depends on the term’s definition. As for Diaspora Jews forfeiting their “rights”, Brian has yet to identify the elements on which he believes such unspecified rights to be predicated.

    Similarly, on Israel’s consistent disregard for its obligations under international law, as mentioned earlier, the usually garrulous Brian prefers to remain silent.

  60. Brian Goldfarb Says:

    That link to alternative news only tells us that Warschawski alleges that Cukierman, etc, as published in Ha’aretz. No link to the actual issue of Ha’aretz, which Carlo later admits he can’t find, if it ever existed. Then you later wrote:

    “I regret the poor quality of the text but the original source if you will is the writer Michel Warschawsky. He arrived in Israel at age 16 from a religious family in Strasbourg. Initially a Talmudic student, he eventually became a radical leftist. He has authored several books about his adopted country and some are available in English. Try his “Towards an Open Tomb – The Crisis of Israeli Society”, Monthly Review Press, 2004. He has no need to fabricate evidence of political manipulation – plenty is readily available.”

    Either you forget what you have written or you are using that well-known literary equivalent of the magician’s quickness of the hand deceiving. Except that you haven’t. You are still alleging that Cukierman wrote this (or said it to a Ha’aretz reporter). Either way, nothing that would pass for evidence. And the quote in the second sentence is a clear evidence of a reference to a book. Or is that now something you don’t remember writing? Or perhaps it was someone who stole your identity?

    Then we come to this: “Surely “continuous presence” is one topic, colonization is another. Is Brian losing it completely, or is he just being careless?” Actually, no it’s not: you have just raised the topic of colonisation, for the first time, and it’s not relevant here. The question of continuous presence is plain, and, while we on the topic, the Arabs are relative late-comers to the area in question. The area in question is the area after the truce of 1949.

    Carlo continues: “Of course there are genetic links between some groups, but whether Jews “share an ethnicity” globally, depends on the term’s definition. As for Diaspora Jews forfeiting their “rights”, Brian has yet to identify the elements on which he believes such unspecified rights to be predicated.” Now Carlo is being beyond rude (which he has been from the start of this latest comment) to downright reworking of what I actually said, and what has been said on these pages many times. Jews share a genetic history much closer than sheer chance would allow (trawl your way through this lot:
    http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2010/06/tracing-the-roots-of-jewishness.html
    “Studies Show Jews’ Genetic Similarity”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/10/science/10jews.html
    http://www.newsweek.com/2010/06/03/the-dna-of-abraham-s-children.html
    “This study demonstrates that European/Syrian and Middle Eastern Jews represent a series of geographical isolates or clusters woven together by shared IBD genetic threads.”
    http://www.cell.com/AJHG/abstract/S0002-9297%2810%2900246-6
    “Jews’ Genetics Make Them A ‘Distinct Population’”
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/06/04/jews-genetics-make-them-a_n_600384.html
    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp/2010/06/genetics-the-jewish-question/
    “The genome-wide structure of the Jewish people.”
    Nature. 2010 Jul 8;466(7303):238-42.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20531471)
    and as for shared ethnicity, the link is beyond doubt. If you don’t accept that, then you display a lack of understanding of what ethnicity is.

    Then, we have this: “Similarly, on Israel’s consistent disregard for its obligations under international law, as mentioned earlier, the usually garrulous Brian prefers to remain silent.” Actually, I do remain silent – partly because the point has never been addressed to me, but also because way up this thread, others have dealt more than adequately with that aspect of your apparent desire to deny israel legitimacy. You didn’t take it up at the time, don’t take up with me now – either that, or go back and argue with those who debated with you at the time, and, furthermore, demonstrated how you were wrong in your allegation.

    Finally, Carlo has been consistently rude to me in this comment and patronising throughout. He has failed to provide links that actually lead to where he says that all will be revealed, he has dismissed others’ arguments as nugatory, he has attempted to discredit us _and_ sell us a bill of goods. In short, he is a charlatan, whether he pretends to ignore it or not.

    Charlatan 1. A mountebank who descants volubly in the street; esp(ecially) an itinerant vendor of drugs, etc. 2. An empiric who pretends to wonderful knowledge or secrets…; an impostor, a quack. (Shorter Oxford English Dictionary)

  61. Carlo Says:

    1. Regarding the “missing link”, I’ve asked the Alternative Information Center to provide it.

    2. As for the imagined book, Brian Goldfarb continues doggedly: “And the quote in the second sentence is a clear evidence of a reference to a book.”
    The sentence in question: “He has authored several books about his adopted country and some are available in English.”
    So it’s perfectly clear that there’s no precise indication of the specific contents of any one book at all, let alone reference to a particular title. The sentence is simply a general statement on Warschawski’s capacity as a writer.

    3. Brian again: “you have just raised the topic of colonisation, for the first time, and it’s not relevant here.”
    He believes colonisation is not relevant here yet earlier he asked: “then how can he justify the occupation and domination of Canada, the USA, the whole of the Caribbean, the whole of Central and South America, South Africa, Australia by groups from Europe (for the most part) at the expense of the original inhabitants?”
    Such a process is normally referred to as colonisation, so the first mention of the topic was by Brian himself. A memory lapse, perhaps.
    Regarding “justification”, the values of the expansionist empire-builders of the past no longer apply today when international legislation sets norms for the respect of individual human rights and of those of indigenous peoples.

    4. Regarding Jews I agreed: “Of course there are genetic links between some groups” – so Brian responds with a whole slew of links to indicate just that. He must enjoy pushing at open doors.

    5. Brian further accuses me of harbouring an “apparent desire to deny Israel legitimacy”.
    As I pointed out earlier, Israel’s legitimacy is not in question: the country is a globally recognized member state of the United Nations.
    What is evident to any objective observer however is that Israel flouts the provisions of several international legal instruments, which I invited readers to consult for themselves.
    Again, it’s not the state that’s illegitimate, but its behaviour.
    On the topic of “delegitimization” see Shlomo Avinery: http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/no-one-is-questioning-israel-s-legitimacy-1.370169

    6. This thread has become repetitive and somewhat tedious – evidenced by the falling away of contributors.
    If The Alternative Information Center produces the requested Haaretz link I shall forward it.
    In the meantime, as Brian will be delighted to hear, I’ve a whole lot of “voluble descanting” to do.

    • Brian Goldfarb Says:

      I think I’ll leave modernity blog to answer your latest comment.

      He says it so much more succinctly than I would.

  62. modernityblog Says:

    Carlo,

    The academics here at Engage are invariably polite to their interlocutors. However, I am not thus compelled.

    Carlo, you are a poor interlocutor. You argue in bad faith. You make plenty of assertions and you can’t provide cogent evidence to back them up. Obviously you have an agenda, which is unrelated to antisemitism (evidenced by your ignorance of the topic).

    Therefore, it is clear that no one gives a damn about your views, evasions or intellectual wriggling.

    Please do us all a favour, take your axe and grind it elsewhere.

    After all, it is your contributions which make this thread so repetitive and tedious.

  63. When all is said and done Says:

    “Jews lie. They lie to protect Israel.
    Antisemitism is bad. Other forms of racism are worse.
    Jews don’t want to compare with those other forms of racism. Why?
    Because they know they’ve never had it so good.
    Jews lie about antisemitism to protect Israel.
    Israel is evil.
    Look at all the Israeli nazis.
    This who the lying Jews want to protect.”

    All those words.
    The result is the same old stinking garbage.
    Lying Jews. Evil Jews.

    “Are you honestly(!) not reminded of another time and place?”

    Indeed I am, indeed I am.


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