Saturday, May 15, 2010

Worth reading:

@ Sign and Sight: The origins of left- wing antisemitism

Stefan Frank interviews the writer and politician Fiamma Nirenstein (homepage) about left-wing anti-Semitism which, she believes, started during the 7 Day War. "The people saw that the Jews were no longer the Jews as they imagined them: a poor minority despised by society who hid themselves away in their houses and synagogues, praying, and who needed permission from non-Jews to do everything. Suddenly the Jews were strong enough to defend themselves against Egypt, Syria and Jordan and even to conquer territory – in a war which should have sealed their fate."

More on the same subject, by Nick Cohen reviewing Pascal Bruckner:

The hatred of Israel in Europe is the best example Bruckner produces. Hardly anyone mentions that the Arab and Iranian dictatorships find anti-Semitism as useful a method for distracting their subject people from examining their worthless regimes as the tsars and the Nazis did.

For Europeans, criticism of sagging Arab nationalist states and resurgent theocracy would mean accepting the existence of alternative sources of sin outside the West and confronting the racial prejudices in Europe's Muslim minorities. Better to blame Israel as a source of danger to Europe for its failure to behave as true penitent.

Bewildered outsiders look on a continent where Holocaust commemoration is a civic religion and wonder how guilt for an anti-Semitic past can coexist with rising anti-Semitism and the singling out for perpetual attack of the world's only Jewish state. Bruckner's convincing answer is that because Israel stands up to its enemies it is in European eyes the root cause of the rage against it. Europe copes with the guilt of the Holocaust by transferring it to Israel, which involves the recycling of the revolting trope that Jews are now Nazis.


@ Michael Totten's: A skinhead in a headscarf:

"I am a Jew," he said. "The head of Hezbollah has said that he hopes that we will gather in Israel so he doesn’t have to hunt us down globally. For or against it?"

"For it," she said.

More, here in the comments


@ CIF Watch: Some facts about Palestinian "Right of Return"

The article goes on to highlight the “extraordinary surplus of the Government and the immense increase in the Customs revenue”, which are attributed to “the increasing immigration”. Quoting an “authoritative estimate”, the number of Jewish immigrants for 1934 is given as 50,000; compared to 38,000 in 1933, and 15,600 in 1932.

But the report also notes:

“The immigration, however, is not restricted to Jews. There has been a steady infiltration into Palestine of Arabs from Syria (the Hauran) and from Trans-Jordan. And it is notable that the illicit immigration of the non-Jews recorded in the report of the Government is more than double that recorded for the Jews.”

Obviously, this means that if some 100 000 Jews immigrated to Palestine between 1932-1934, more than 200 000 Arabs immigrated illegally in the same period – and, interestingly enough, some of these illegal Arab immigrants came from the very part of Palestine that the British had decided to cut off from the Mandate area to create an exclusively Arab state from which Jews would be barred.

Of course, even back then, it was fashionable to claim that Jewish immigration caused terrible hardship for the “natives” of Palestine – but, as one contemporary British official dryly noted:

“This illegal [Arab] immigration was not only going on from the Sinai, but also from Transjordan and Syria, and it is very difficult to make a case out for the misery of the Arabs if at the same time their compatriots from adjoining states could not be kept from going in to share that misery.”


At 9:55 PM EDT, Anonymous K2K said...

"the Jews were no longer the Jews as they imagined them"

Absolutely. Jews with guns fighting back and winning? That is so Old Testament. On May 4, in
"The Banality of Good" New York Times op-ed columnist (who only appears in the Inernational Herald Tribune edition, NOT the NYT read by a million Jews in the NYC metro area), Roger Cohen asks:

"What was it like in the leafy Grunewald neighborhood [of Berlin] to watch your Jewish neighbors — lawyers, businessmen, dentists — trooping head bowed to the nearby train station for transport eastward to extinction?"

Heads BOWED? Is that not Roger Cohen's left-wing imagination at work???? Even the Nazis were not stupid enough to march the professionals of Grunewald off to the train station in front of their neighbors. Those who were left disappeared when they lost title to their homes.

I maintain this is why the film "Defiance" did so poorly in international markets. Daniel Craig as a Polish or French partisan killing Nazis would have been a blockbuster.

At 2:39 PM EDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you read Crossroads to Israel by Christopher Sykes [1966] you will see that British left-wing anti-semitism was alive and kicking in the Macdonald Labour Government.

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At 1:05 AM EDT, Anonymous Migreli said...

In her book "From Time Immemorial" Joan Peters described Arab immigration into Palestine in the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s, when Jewish immigrant numbers were subjected to severe restrictions by the British. She was rewarded with a barrage of ridicule and venom in the Anglo-Saxon countries, and also at the hands of Israelis like Yehoshua Porat. In the London Spectator, Ian Gilmour wrote that every page in the book was a forgery.

The subject is clearly sensitive, since it exposes the underbelly of anti-Jewish malice that existed among the soon-to-be Allies as well as everywhere else during those dark years, when desperate Jews were prevented from fleeing the European death trap. It contains, amongst other documents, copies of letters sent by Amin El Husseini to Heinrich Himmler, calling upon him to solve the Palestine Jewish question with the same methods used to solve the Polish Jewish question.

Peters book also gives a comprehensive account of the persecution and oppression of Jews in the Arab world.

I personally know Arabs living in Israel today whose grandparents came to Palestine from Syria in the 1930s. Such provenance is commonplace, and is one of the reasons for the strong Syriaphilic sentiments of many Israeli Arabs.

At 11:46 AM EDT, Anonymous TNC said...

As I've mentioned at my blog, left-wing antisemitism predates the Seven Day War (1967) by a little over a century and goes all the way back to the Old Left.

The war may have been the motivating factor for the New Left but left-wing antisemitism is found in the works of anarchists like Proudhon and Bakunin as well as Marxists, including Marx who wrote:

"Let us consider the actual, worldly Jew, not the Sabbath Jew, as Bauer does, but the everyday Jew.

Let us not look for the secret of the Jew in his religion, but let us look for the secret of his religion in the real Jew.

What is the secular basis of Judaism? Practical need, self-interest.

What is the worldly religion of the Jew? Huckstering. What is his worldly God? Money.

Very well then! Emancipation from huckstering and money, consequently from practical, real Judaism, would be the
self-emancipation of our time."

It's absolutely insane that so many Jewish Marxists fail to come to terms with Marx's antisemitism.

At 1:51 PM EDT, Anonymous TNC said...

Forgot to add the following:

I realize Marxists try to get around these horrendous comments by a number of means:

1) Differentiating the "young" Marx and his early writings from the "old" Marx and his later writings;
2) Claiming he is being humorous;
3) Claiming this is a use of irony;
4) etc.

But I think the words pretty much speak for themselves.

More on antisemitism and the Old Left here:


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