Tuesday, March 31, 2009
3/31/2009 11:35:00 AM
1. Want to know why England has survived so long as a stable country?
The secret is the House of Lords!
What's that, you say? The House of Lords? But they do not DO anything at
England survives politically because it can get rid of incompetent and
aging political hacks, people to whom the system "owes" favors, by dumping
them in the House of Lords. There they get all the honors the country can
bestow but where they cannot do very much damage.
If only Israel had its own House of Lords, the country would be in much
better shape! We would not be witnessing the spectacle of a government
cabinet that consists of a quarter of all the members of the parliament.
Bibi is announcing a cabinet with 30 different ministers, about twice the
maximum number that could be justified. Most do not really have any job
at all. Paraphrasing Nehemia Strassler at Haaretz, these may be described
as the Minister of Nothing with the Minister of Squat with the Minister of
Gar Nichts and the Minister of Doodly. Avishai Braverman is one of these
myriad Ministers of Nothing. His job is "Minister of Minorities," meaning
Arabs, meaning he can try to do to the government what he did previously
to Ben Gurion University.
2. I really think the time has come for Meretz to change its name to
the Israeli Ku Klux Klan.
The Klan, you recall, used to hold noisy demonstrations every time a
black family moved into an area that the Klan regarded as "white." Every
single American Jewish organization took to the barricades to protest such
The Israeli Klan is led by Meretz and is dedicated to preventing
religious Jews from moving into neighborhoods it regards as secularist.
No American Jewish organizations are taking to the barricades.
The latest battle ground is Kiryat Yovel in Jerusalem, a neighborhood
in which I lived as a student. It seems that religious and even
ultra-Orthodox black-coat Jews are moving there. The secularists claim it
is a big plot to "take over" their neighborhood. Haaretz devotes a long
article today (not on line) to celebrating the Meretz campaign to prevent
the religious from entering Kiryat Yovel. The same newspaper that could
not contain its bliss when Obama became the first black Prez is now loudly
Jim Crowing against a different sort of black (those with black coats).
They cite with approval the Meretz city councilman Papa Allo (that is really
his name), who screams, "Those who think one can get along with the
religious just do not know what they are talking about." Indeed.
Similar secularist hooliganism has taken place in other places,
including the Old Romema neighborhood in Haifa, where secularists even
invaded a neighborhood synagogue and beat religious Jews to drive them out
of the neighbohood. In a Jerusalem secular neighborhood, enraged parents
called the cops to remove a woman who was handing out sabbath candles to
high school kids on Friday near the school yard. Had she been handing out
pot there would have been no problem.
3. Jenin - a hotbed of "moderates"?
4. More Leftist First Amendment:
5. Sderot under attack in America:
6.. Yuli Tamir's last surgery:
. 7. Anti-Semitism on Stage:
. OPINION: GLOBAL VIEW
. MARCH 30, 2009, 11:30 P.M. ET
The Stages of Anti-Semitism
An avant-garde play revives an ancient hatred.
. By BRET STEPHENS
Here's a sketch for a racist play about "moral decline" in black America
since the civil rights era.
Act I: Heroic protestors gather at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma,
Ala., in 1965 to march in defiance of a segregationist state. Act II: The
scene moves to San Francisco in the early 1970s, where the radical
politics of the Black Panthers quickly give way to robbery and murder. Act
III: A New York City crack house, circa 1985. Act IV: the trial of O.J.
Simpson. Act V: The present, in which a black man on a prison furlough
goes on a murder spree.
Appalled? I hope so.
Now substitute the word "Jewish" for "black" and change the scene to
Europe and Israel and you have, roughly, the plot of celebrated British
playwright Caryl Churchill's "Seven Jewish Children," which debuted last
month to some controversy and much acclaim at London's Royal Court
Theater. It is now in the U.S., playing in small but respectable venues to
sophisticated audiences that -- judging from the performance I attended in
New York last Thursday -- are overwhelmingly disposed to like it.
Ms. Churchill's short play unfolds over seven scenes, beginning, dimly,
sometime during the Holocaust and concluding, sharply, with Israel's war
with Hamas. Characters appear as parents or older relatives of an offstage
child, and the dialogue revolves around what the girl should or should not
know about her political circumstances as they unfold over the decades.
So, for the first scene we have the line, "Don't tell her they'll kill
her" -- the "they" presumably referring to Nazis. Yet by the final scene
the tables have turned. Now it's the Jews who behave like Nazis: "Tell
her," says one of the play's Zionist elders, "I wouldn't care if we wiped
them out . . . tell her we're better haters, tell her we're chosen people,
tell her I look at one of their children covered in blood and what do I
feel? Tell her all I feel is happy it's not her." (My emphases.)
Just what is this supposed to mean? Michael Billington of the Guardian
grasped Ms. Churchill's point when he wrote that the play captured "the
transition that has overtaken Israel, to the point where security has
become the pretext for indiscriminate slaughter." Ms. Churchill herself
has written that she "wanted [the play] in some small way to reflect the
shock and enormity of what happened in Gaza. I think it does that
relatively mildly." (My emphasis again.)
All this makes perfect sense -- provided you're willing to reduce the
Arab-Israeli conflict to caricature, magnify it to the exclusion of all
others, assign blame (and moral agency) wholly to one side, and suppose
that Israelis use the memory of the Holocaust cynically or neurotically as
an alibi for gratuitous and wanton bloodletting.
In other words, if you're prepared to manipulate history as dishonestly as
our vile little "play" about black America does, then it's easy to draw a
damning moral. And if you're clever enough to cast the indictment as a
story about some blacks or some Jews, or as one of generational decadence,
then you might also acquit yourself of charges of racism or anti-Semitism,
since you can point to a few Jews or blacks worthy of your considered
Of course Ms. Churchill does just that, even as she mocks Jewish claims to
statehood ("Tell her her great great great great lots of greats grandad
lived there"). Of course she cites the authority of Israel's many internal
dissenters and Jewish critics as another method of self-justification,
thereby using Israel's own openness as a club with which to bludgeon it.
Yet if you say, for instance, that Israel is a fascist state and cite the
testimony of Israelis who freely argue as much, then you have done nothing
except instantly disprove your own premise.
But logic is not the issue here, nor, really, are the facts: Try arguing
either with someone determined to ignore them. The issue is about taboo --
a word easy to mock until you realize it often upholds what is best in
society. Racism has become taboo in American society, and that's a very
good thing. Anti-Semitism used to be taboo, but that's been eroded by an
obsessive criticism of Israel that seems to borrow freely from the classic
anti-Semitic repertoire ("tell her they're filth") while adopting the
brilliant trick of treating Jewish victimization as a moral ideal from
which modern Israel has sadly deviated.
Readers may wonder why Ms. Churchill's trite agitprop, a cultural blip on
the vast American stage, deserves a column. Maybe it doesn't; maybe it's
best ignored. But I'm reminded of what a better Churchill -- Winston --
wrote about the German decision in 1917 to put V.I. Lenin on a sealed
train to Petersburg, "in the same way you might send a phial containing a
culture of typhoid or cholera to be poured into the water supply of a
great city." Something foul has now gotten into our water, too.
8. Europeans been reading Haaretz?
9. Tel Aviv University's moral equivalent to Holocaust Deniers:
Monday, March 30, 2009
3/30/2009 02:08:00 PM
(re-post of older item)
Deconstructing the Hebrew University of Jerusalem
by Steven Plaut
24 June 2003
This past week the Hebrew University of Jerusalem decided to grant an
honorary PhD to Jacques Derrida, the godfather of the pseudo-philosophy of
"Deconstruction" or .Deconstructionism..
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem decided to make itself into an even
bigger laughingstock than it already has been thanks to its legions of Far
Leftist and Anti-Zionist professors. This past week it decided to grant
an honorary PhD to Jacques Derrida, the godfather of the pseudo-philosophy
Deconstruction is a shallow form of Non-Thinking that has gained
popularity among some of the more simpleminded disciplines of the academic
world. Essentially the same as .post-modernism. (how is that for a true
nonsense word, something no woodchuck could chuck?), Deconstruction
argues that there do not exist any such things as facts, truth, logic,
rationality, nor science. Nothing in the world exists beyond subjective
.narratives,. each as legitimate as the next. Language is the ultimate
form of tyranny and source of control of us oppressed folks by those evil
elites. There are no false narratives, just different subjectivities.
And the only thing we can be truly certain about in this meaningless world
is that the United States and Israel must be destroyed.
Deconstruction was defined nicely by Robert Locke: .It is also known
as poststructuralism, but don.t ask what structuralism was, as it was no
better. It is based on the proposition that the apparently real world is
in fact a vast social construct and that the way to knowledge lies in
taking apart in one.s mind this thing society has built. Taken to its
logical conclusion, it supposes that there is at the end of the day no
actual reality, just a series of appearances stitched together by social
constructs into what we all agree to call reality. But not agree
voluntarily, for society has (this is the leftist bit) an oppressive
structure, so we are pressured to agree to that version of reality which
pleases the people in charge.. Left-wing pseudo-intellectuals love
substituting polysyllable-invention for thinking and analysis.
Among the .founders. of the .School. of Deconstructionism was Yale
professor Paul de Man, a close friend of Jacques Derrida's, who had
published pro-Nazi collaborationist and anti-Semitic articles in two
Belgian newspapers in the early Forties. The other Deconstructionists
have always tried to deconstruct the Nazism of de Man so that it would not
look too bad.
Deconstruction has long been linked with Marxism, a rather strange
combination - given the insistence by deconstructionists that they should
never claim to .know. anything. Marxists claim to know everything, based
on ridiculous .theories. by Marx disproved 150 years ago, making the
Marxist-Deconstructionist axis rather queer. It also sometimes calls
itself post-colonialism, apparently because some of its Frenchie inventors
came from Algeria, although I have never understood how it can be certain
that anything or anyone was ever colonized or colonizer.
For deconstructionists, proof and disproof are unimportant. They accept
as axiomatic the claim that social power structures control everything in
the world, I guess including all .narratives,. and that literature and art
are nothing more than reflections of or protests against such power and
oppression. Never mind that the Decon conmen have no way of measuring nor
assessing power, control, class, nor privilege; they are SURE that these
things are out there and control the world like the Council on Foreign
Relations in a Barry Chamish conspiracy .theory..
Robert Locke has said that Deconstruction is the opiate of an obsolete
intellectual class. It is little more than sophistry and absolute moral
relativism. Deconstructionists insist that even words themselves have no
meaning. Hence we all live in a meaningless universal in which we are
all no better than noisy mutts, making silly barking sounds, which of
course is already obvious to any of you out there who have listened in to
comparative literature courses from lefty profs. As one critic pointed
out, all of Deconstructionism is founded on the paradox of using language
to claim that language cannot make unambiguous claims (John Searle, "The
World Turned Upside Down," The New York Review, October 27, 1983).
Deconstructionists oppose being .judgmental. about anything except the
absolute evil of capitalism and America, which is why it is popular these
days mainly among American tenured leftists (the French berets have by and
large moved on to other amusements). They believe in an absolute
justice, although cannot tell you what and where it is, nor how to achieve
it. They think it is something we all simply need to sit back and await,
like a Messiah on a deconstructed donkey, although we can hurry it along
by joining the Far Left. Deconstruction attracts a certain sort of
adolescent mind (regardless of the age of the accompanying body) because
of its cynicism and dismissal of rational thought and science. In Locke.s
wonderful words, .It raises to the level of a philosophical system the
intuition that everything grownups do is a fraud. It is the metaphysics of
Holden Caulfield. It enables the practitioner to tell himself that he is
among the privileged group of insiders who know that the Wizard of Oz is
behind the curtain..
Among the forms of knowledge dismissed by them, especially in the case of
the Deconstructionist .philosopher. Michel Foucault, is medicine, because
medical science is merely an elite knowledge system that confers power on
doctors. I have long believed that one of the funniest things in life
must be a Deconstructionist professor of comparative literature in need of
an emergency root canal, being treated by a deconstructionist dentist.
(.Your pain is not real, it is subjective, let me narrate about it to you,
there is no pain in reality, Novocain will interfere with your
Jacques Derrida is one of the fathers of this .school. of
Deconstruction. (Do not confuse it with Reconstructionism, which
differs from Deconstructionism mainly in the fact that it is spelled with
an .R..) He is best known for his attack on .logocentrism;. that is, on
the cruel oppression by rational thinking. What a poster boy for the
Hebrew University! He even dismisses Stalin as a logocentrist, which
explains the Gulags and Red Terror that ruined what otherwise would be the
great blessings of Marxism. We should all seek salvation through
resistance to logic.
As Deconstruction has become regarded more and more as a laughingstock
even among French leftwing intellectuals, it has gained popularity in some
of the darker corners of American and Israeli campuses. Israeli leftists
and media columnists (pretty much the same people) like to toss around the
Newspeak of Deconstructionism, and long ago decided that the whole war is
because those insensitive Jews refuse to accept the Palestinian .Other..
Palestinians blowing up dozens of young .Others. on buses do not seem to
bother them much.
The weaker the level of intellectual analysis and formal standards of
scientific evidence and proof, the more popular Deconstruction is.
This is why professors of comparative literature have trouble controlling
their sexual excitement stimulated by it, professors of education adore
it, sociologists sometimes applaud it, and members of all real scientific
fields tend to place Deconstruction in the same category as the Ra-El
To Derrida.s credit, he never bought in to the Stalinism so popular among
most French .intellectuals.. And Derrida is only one of the better-known
clowns in the three-ring Deconstructionist Big Top. Michel Foucault is
perhaps even better known than Derrida. He was a great celebrator of
psychedelic drug use, sado-masochistic anonymous gay sex, cruelty and
violence as expressions of liberation and deepness. He , however, could
not be honored this week by the Hebrew University - because he died from
AIDS in 1984. There have been allegations that after discovering that he
had picked up AIDS, he intentionally continued .cruising. the San
Francisco gay scene to infect as many gay men as possible with the virus.
In the autumn of 1983, after Foucault's health had collapsed and less than
a year before his death, he continued to frequent gay bathhouses and bars.
He is best remembered for his motto: .Sex is worth dying for.. According
to Mark Lilla (The Reckless Mind: Intellectuals in Politics), Foucault
laughed at the idea of 'safe sex' and apparently said, 'To die for the
love of boys: what could be more beautiful?'
Derrida is only the latest example of Israeli universities honoring
fatuous trendy leftist know-nothing Eurotwit pseudo-thinkers. A few
years back Tel Aviv University gave a similar honorary doctorate to German
.philosopher. Jurgen Habermas. Habermas' theory is watered down
Peres-ism, where there are no actual conflicts of interests on earth,
where all conflicts in the world are the result of poor communications,
and where all conflict may be resolved through .communicative actions.
(psychobabble for talking it out). I would like to see Herr Habermas get
himself out of a mugging situation in gang turf in some of my old
Philadelphian stomping grounds using communicative action. But Habermas
had at least been a vocal critic of German skinheads and neonazis,
creating some sort of figleaf for Tel Aviv University honoring him.
Derrida has no such track record. He has not even renounced de Man.
While technically born Jewish, Derrida has a long record of endorsing the
Left.s sets of liberation solutions to the .problem. of Israel.s
existence. Far-Left Haaretz defines him as a Zaddik, which pretty much
tells you everything you need to know about his position on Israel.
Hebrew University was once the leading academic institution in Israel.
It has long since been surpassed in most fields by Tel Aviv University,
the Weitzmann Institute, and other institutions. Its campus is
increasingly dominated by Tenured Radicals and leftist extremists among
the faculty. So - on second thought, and I mean this in the most
anti-logocentric sense of the word - perhaps the honoring of Derrida by
the Hebrew University makes a great deal of sense after all, or at least
it is a telling .narrative...
Steven Plaut teaches at the University of Haifa.
3/30/2009 12:17:00 PM
Seems I fell for the same sort of spoof that others sometimes fall
for when I send out a spoof. Turns out that the "Financial Times"
anti-Semitic piece I
sent earlier is actually a spoof from a web site that mocks the Financial
Times, like the "Onion" in the US, at http://ft2020.com/israel/
I was thrown off cause the page header does look like the Financial Times.
Not that there is any shortage of bash-Israel pieces in teh Financial
Times, which - I guess - is the point the mock site was trying to make....
3/30/2009 10:47:00 AM
1. Time to boycott the British "Financial Times." The Financial Times
ran this obscene call for Israel's total annihilation: http://ft2020.com/israel/
The time has come to annihilate the Financial Times.
Anti-Semitism on decline since Israel wiped off map
. By Eli Wurzel in New York and Ehud Qassam in Jerusalem (Eli
Wurzel evidently does not really exist)
. Published: April 1 2020
Anti-Semitic behaviour has dropped off sharply since the new state of
Kanaan came into being on 14 May 2018, according to a United Nations
The world.s newest independent country, Kanaan incorporates all of the
territory formerly known as Israel, as well as the territories that Israel
Although many feared a Middle Eastern Holocaust after the disuniting of
the American states, and despite threats of terrorism by the Provisional
Stern Gang and the Ariel Sharon Memorial League, the transition of the
highly militarised Jewish state into a modern secular democracy has been
Pockets of prejudice persist, the study found, but their influence on
popular opinion is now marginal.
Formal recognition of the right of return of all Palestinians forced into
exile, and of Jerusalem.s status as an international city, have together
had .a significant positive impact. on the incidence of anti-Jewish
feeling around the world, the UN researchers say.
Kanaan.s new government stoked controversy last year when it admitted to
possession of an arsenal of nuclear weapons.
Successive Israeli administrations had refused to confirm or deny the
weapons. existence, in the interests of maintaining regional stability.
In a wide-ranging series of proclamations, Kanaan also condemned suicide
bombings, and issued a formal acknowledgement of the .many crimes and
injustices. which took place during Israel.s birth.
It also caused indignation in parts of North America by stating that
occurrences recounted in scripture .are not considered an appropriate
foundation for national policy in the present day..
Please order a subscription to the Financial Times under a pseudonym and
then do not pay for it!
Please let the editors of the Financial Times know that all FT staff will
be attacked with shoes wherever they appear in the civilized world.
2. More on British anti-Semitism:
Caryl Churchill's Seven Jewish Children
By Kenneth Levin
FrontPageMagazine.com | 3/30/2009
"... [T]he Islamic Resistance Movement aspires to realize the promise of
Allah, no matter how long it takes. The Prophet, Allah.s prayer and peace
be upon him, says: 'The hour of judgment will not come until the Muslims
fight the Jews and kill them, so that the Jews hide behind trees and
stones and each tree and stone will say: "Oh Muslim, oh servant of Allah,
there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him..."."
So declares the charter of the Palestinian organization Hamas, now ruling
Gaza. Nor is this genocidal agenda limited to a statement in Hamas.s
founding document. It is taught in Hamas-controlled schools, preached in
its mosques, and promoted in Hamas media, including children.s television.
The same incitement to genocide is purveyed in the schools, mosques and
media of the PLO, or Palestinian Authority. In addition, both Hamas and
elements of the PA, such as the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, aggressively
seek to translate their murderous agenda into action, attacking Israelis
with rockets, mortar barrages and suicide bombings and particularly
Successful terror operations against Israeli civilians are celebrated by
both PA and Hamas operatives by the handing out of sweets to Palestinian
children and adults, reinforcing the message of what actions Palestinians
ought most to emulate and delight in.
Yet in the United Kingdom, it has become popular in various circles to
stand this reality on its head: to ignore the incitement to genocide and
excuse the terror that it inspires, and even to claim falsely that it is,
rather, the Israelis who seek to dehumanize the Palestinians and delight
in their slaughter.
Thus in Caryl Churchill.s play, Seven Jewish Children, the Jews of Israel
are murderous interlopers who are sensitive only to their own pain and
feel justified in coldly visiting pain on their Arab neighbors. One
"... [T]ell her [that is, tell the Jewish child] they're animals living in
rubble now, tell her I wouldn.t care if we wiped them out, the world would
hate us is the only thing, tell her I don.t care if the world hates us,
tell her we're better haters, tell her we're chosen people, tell her I
look at one of their children covered in blood and what do I feel? tell
her all I feel is happy it's not her."
Are there some Israelis, or non-Israeli Jews, who feel this level of
hatred? No doubt. Churchill.s Big Lie is the implicit claim that this is
commonplace among Israelis or other Jews, when in reality every major
organ of Israeli and Jewish society, including Israel.s political parties,
consistently condemns such hatred, while every major organ of Palestinian
society explicitly promotes it.
What inspires Churchill and those like-minded in the UK to this inversion
of reality? Obviously, it.s difficult to plumb from a distance the
psychological warp of any particular individual. What can be said is that
such views have a pedigree in Britain.
George Eliot, writing largely of her fellow countrymen, observed in an
1878 essay, "It would be difficult to find a form of bad reasoning about
[the Jews] which has not been heard in conversation or been admitted to
the dignity of print."
Even Churchill.s silence on and apparent indifference to the genocidal
agenda of the Palestinian leadership and its effort to translate that
agenda into action has entrenched precedent in Britain. There have long
been circles who have had such a distaste for the Jews as to be impervious
to efforts to exterminate them and, indeed, have regarded such efforts as
having attractive pragmatic advantages. For example, a spring, 1943,
Foreign Office memo to the State Department urging rejection of any
efforts to save European Jews, declared - expressing sentiments conveyed
in other communications as well - "There is a possibility that the Germans
or their satellites may change over from the policy of extermination to
one of extrusion, and aim as they did before the war at embarrassing other
countries by flooding them with alien immigrants."
Anti-Jewish bias of murderous dimensions was so rife that Winston
Churchill was prompted during the war, as well as at other times, to warn
against what he described as "the usual anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic
channel." In response to such concerns, Churchill was attacked for being,
in the words of one colleague, "too fond of Jews."
Given this tradition, it is perhaps not surprising that promotion and
pursuit of the extermination of the Jews by Palestinian groups hardly
merits comment in Britain. Rarely is it noted, for example, by the BBC or
the most respected British print media or other outlets of what
constitutes the UK.s chattering classes. That silence, like Caryl
Churchill.s, to Hamas.s program, and to the similar agenda of competing
major Palestinian parties, extends also to their explicit declarations
that their determination to kill the Jews is unrelated to borders or
"settlements" but is a response rather to the Jews. temerity in claiming
rights of national self-determination routinely accorded other peoples and
doing so in land Palestinians regard as properly the exclusive preserve of
Muslims. The absence of this reality from British commentary on Israel and
the Palestinians can only be construed as reflecting widespread perception
of the latter's murderous agenda as not particularly noteworthy or
troubling. Moral outrage is reserved, instead, for Israeli attempts to
defend themselves from the genocidal assaults of their neighbors.
Reflective of this bias was the response in Britain to the terror war
launched by Yasser Arafat against Israel in 2000. As Israelis were being
killed by the score each month in suicide bombings, roadside shootings and
other terror attacks, media coverage in Britain tended to portray the
slaughter as nothing worthy of exceptional attention. In April, 2002,
however, the Israelis finally launched a ground offensive in response to
the terror assault - after 133 people had been killed in anti-Israel
attacks the previous month. Israel invaded the terrorist safe-haven in the
center of Jenin, an operation that, according to a UN investigation and
reports by Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, resulted in about
23 Israelis and 52 Palestinians killed, the latter mostly armed combatants
even as the terror groups used civilians as human shields. The Israeli
operation was almost universally decried in Britain as the "Jenin
massacre," and Israel condemned in the most lurid of purple prose:
"We are talking here of massacre, and a cover-up, of genocide," feverishly
exclaimed A.N. Wilson in London.s Evening Standard. (He also accused
Israel of "the poisoning of water supplies," perhaps throwing this in
because the other accusations didn.t satisfy his appetite for traditional
"Rarely in more than a decade of war reporting from Bosnia, Chechnya,
Sierra Leone, Kosovo, have I seen such deliberate destruction, such
disrespect for human life," emoted Janine di Giovanni, the London Times
correspondent in Jenin.
"Every bit as repellent" as Osama Bin Laden.s September 11, 2001 attacks
on the United States, was the measured assessment of the Guardian in a
Similarly, Hamas.s incessant rocket and mortar attacks on Israeli
communities in the three years since Israel.s total withdrawal from Gaza,
attacks undertaken with the exclusive aim of killing civilians and forcing
survivors to flee the area for safety, received minimal coverage in
British media. Instead Israel was condemned for not being sufficiently
forthcoming in allowing supplies to this government bent on its
annihilation. It was also falsely charged with withholding essential food
and medical supplies from Gaza. In fact, there has never been a shortage
of either, except to the extent that Hamas has commandeered provisions and
either offered international contributions for sale to Gazans or diverted
them to the organization.s own use.
And, of course, when Israel sought to end Hamas.s attacks by an air and
ground offensive this past December, there was little in British reporting
about the precipitating Hamas assaults or Hamas.s use of civilians as
human shields. And there were few truthful accounts of the number of Hamas
fighters and civilians killed or factual assessments of damage to
buildings not part of Hamas.s infrastructure or not used as launching pads
for Hamas attacks.
Instead, there was the familiar shoddy, biased reporting of the "Jenin
massacre" ilk, and there is Caryl Churchill.s Seven Jewish Children, to
satisfy what for many in Britain is an apparently insatiable thirst for
anti-Jewish libels and indifference to the targeting of Jews.
Kenneth Levin is a psychiatrist and historian and author of The Oslo
Syndrome: Delusions of a People under Siege (Smith and Kraus, 2005;
Why Are the British Leaders in Anti-Semitism?
Interview with Robert Solomon Wistrich
Institute for Global Jewish Affairs
. Antisemitism has been present in Great Britain for almost a
thousand years of recorded history. In the twelfth century, Catholic
medieval Britain was a persecutory society, particularly when it came to
Jews. It pioneered the blood libel and the church was a leader in
instituting cruel legislation and discriminatory conduct toward Jews.
. English literature and culture are drenched in antisemitic
stereotypes. Major British authors throughout the centuries transmitted
culturally embedded antisemitism to future generations. Although they did
not do so deliberately, it was absorbed and has had a long-term, major
impact on British society.
. In the new century the United Kingdom is a European leader in
several areas of antisemitism. It holds a pioneering position in promoting
academic boycotts of Israel. The same is true for trade-union efforts at
economic boycotts. There is also no other Western society where jihadi
radicalism has proved as violent and dangerous as in the UK.
. In the UK the anti-Zionist narrative probably has greater
legitimacy than in any other Western society. Antisemitism of the
"anti-Zionist" variety has achieved such resonance, particularly in elite
opinion, that various British media are leaders in this field. Successive
British governments neither share nor have encouraged such attitudes-least
of all Prime Ministers Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. They have shown
concern over antisemitism and the boycott movement and tried to counteract
them. However, Trotskyites who infiltrated the Labour Party and the trade
unions in the 1980s have been an important factor in spreading poisonous
attitudes. The BBC has also played a role in stimulating pro-Palestinian
and anti-Israeli attitudes over the years.
"The United Kingdom has been a European leader in several areas of
antisemitism in the new century. It holds a pioneering position in
promoting academic boycotts of Israel. The same is true for trade-union
efforts at economic boycotts.
"Although the anti-Zionist narrative is worldwide and widespread in the
European Union, this discourse in the UK probably exceeds that of most
other Western societies. Thus antisemitism has achieved a degree of
resonance, particularly in elite opinion, that makes the country a leader
in encouraging discriminatory attitudes. Trotskyites who infiltrated the
Labour Party and the trade unions back in the 1980s are an important
factor in spreading this poison."
Prof. Robert Wistrich holds the Neuberger Chair for Modern European and
Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Since 2002 he has
been director of the Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of
Antisemitism at that university and has been vigorously involved in the
struggle against its inroads.
He adds: "There is also no other Western society where jihadi radicalism
has proved as violent and dangerous as in the UK. Although antisemitism is
not the determining factor in this extremism, it plays a role. This
Islamist radicalism has helped shape the direction of overall antisemitism
in the UK.
"Another pioneering role of the UK, especially in the area of
anti-Israelism is the longstanding bias in BBC reporting and commentary
about the Jewish world and Israel in particular. Double standards have
long been a defining characteristic of its Middle East coverage. This has
had debilitating consequences. The BBC plays a special role owing to its
long-established prestige as a news source widely considered to be
objective. It carries a weight beyond that of any other Western media
"One characteristic of English antisemitism has been its often understated
nature, in keeping with British tradition. That makes it more effective
because one does not become aware of it so easily. One example among many
is the British journalist Richard Ingrams, who was editor of the satirical
magazine Private Eye for twenty-three years starting in the 1960s. He once
wrote in the Observer that he threw away unread all correspondence he
received from people with Jewish names regarding the Middle East because,
he thought, they must be biased on the subject. If someone were to tell
him he is an antisemite he would, of course, reject that. But would he
publicly write the same thing about Arab correspondents?"
Medieval England: A Leader in Antisemitism
Wistrich observes that analyzing current antisemitism requires looking
back in time. The present motifs often resemble ancient ones and have
their roots there. "Nothing is ever as new as it appears. Antisemitism in
Great Britain has been around for almost a thousand years of recorded
history. Medieval England was already a leader in antisemitism.
"In the Middle Ages, England pioneered the blood libel. The Norwich case
in 1144 marked the first time Jews were accused of using the blood of
Christian children for their Passover matzot. In the twelfth century,
medieval Britain was a persecutory Catholic society, particularly when it
came to Jews. In this environment the English church was a leader in
instituting cruel legislation and discriminatory conduct toward Jews,
unparalleled in the rest of Europe.
"From the Norman Conquest of 1066 onward there was a steady
process-particularly during the thirteenth century-of persecution, forced
conversion, extortion, and expropriation of Jews. This culminated in the
expulsion of the Jews from England in 1290 under Edward I. It was the
first ejection of a major Jewish community in Europe. It is important to
bear this in mind because it is not widely known, least of all in England.
I grew up there and went to grammar school and to Cambridge University and
do not recall that this was ever mentioned. On the contrary, we were
taught at school about the chivalry of Richard the Lionheart, not the
massacres of Jews by Crusader kings.
"Britain was not only the first country in medieval Europe to expel Jews
but also one of the last to take them back. It took slightly more than 350
years for this to happen. The return of the Jews to the British Isles
began very quietly and informally in 1656 under Oliver Cromwell. This was
the beginning-drop by drop-of the formation a new community that over time
would contribute a great deal to British society."
Antisemitism without Jews
"The long absence of Jews from the shores of the British Isles did not
mean that in the intervening period, antisemitism disappeared. This is an
instructive early example of how society does not need the physical
presence of Jews for the potency of the anti-Jewish stereotypes to
penetrate the culture.
"I grew up on English literature. When I was sixteen we had to prepare for
the advanced-level certificate. In our syllabus were several of the
classic English works. They included Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales
from the late fourteenth century; Christopher Marlowe's The Jew of Malta
from the late sixteenth century; and William Shakespeare's The Merchant of
Venice of the same period, which until today has remained one of the most
popular plays of the English theater.
"One interesting question is how could Shakespeare draw such a portrait of
Shylock probably without ever encountering a real flesh-and-blood Jew?
There are many theories about that. Yet he and Marlowe before him managed
to portray the Jews as major villains whom the populace would instantly
recognize as the .antitype.' I am not, of course, saying Shakespeare was
an antisemite in the ideological sense (his portrait of Shylock is more
complex than that). But the force of the anti-Jewish stereotype is so
powerful that this is what is ultimately retained in the .collective
unconscious' of English culture.
"This Shylock image influenced the entire West because it fits so well
with the evolution of market capitalism from its early days. Shakespeare
portrayed the subject in a way that is to a certain extent realistic,
reflecting the rise of a commercial society in Venice and of economic
competition. But Shylock has come to embody an image of the vengeful,
tribal, and bloodthirsty Jew, who will never give up his pound of flesh.
Rightly or wrongly, this is what most people remember. Shylock is the
English archetype of the villainous Jew. Those who talk about how
humanistic, universal, and empathetic his portrait is, are ignoring not
only how it was perceived at the time but its historical consequences."
Literature Drenched in Antisemitism
"We also studied Charles Dickens's Oliver Twist, from the Victorian era,
in which a Jew is again the archetype of the villain. In addition, there
were modern twentieth-century authors who portrayed their characters in a
partly antisemitic way. Among them were Edwardian writers like John
Galsworthy, H. G. Wells, and Nobel Prize winner T. S. Eliot. The latter
was the major twentieth-century poet whose work we had to study. There
were few authors devoid of any antisemitism. One exception was George
Eliot (Mary Anne Evans), an eccentric though remarkable woman who
understood the Jewish plight. Her book Daniel Deronda can be considered a
pro-Zionist work, as well as being a classic Victorian novel.
"From my experience with this syllabus, all these authors, however
admirable their contribution to English and world literature, were
unintentionally transmitting culturally embedded antisemitism to future
generations. The influence of such a process should not be underestimated.
It is difficult to neutralize antisemitic images like that of Judas-the
betrayer of Christ-in the Gospels.
"English literature and culture are drenched in anti-Jewish images,
perhaps even more than many of the great literary traditions of Europe.
Obviously, though, there are analogies in France, Spain, Germany, Romania,
and Russia. One cannot understand attitudes toward Jews in Britain today
without taking into account the antisemitism embedded in the national
culture. It exists without even being noticed and is often silently soaked
up. Many well-educated and well-meaning people fail to understand the
long-term impact of such a cultural factor on their society, and are not
even aware of their own latent prejudices. That was my experience during
the thirty years I lived in Britain and it has got much worse because of
The Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries
During the nineteenth century, matters evolved more favorably for the
English Jews. Says Wistrich: "The British Empire reached its pinnacle of
power and influence. England had become a relatively liberal society. Jews
could feel proud and self-confident in proclaiming that they were British
citizens. In the Middle East, Britain was even considered a protector of
the Jews. It was more tolerant than most of its rivals and more open to
intervening and trying to correct the disabilities of Jews in other parts
of the world. So this was a kind of .golden age.'
"Yet here, too, the picture is more ambivalent than is often assumed. This
was particularly so in the late nineteenth century with the immigration of
Jews from Russia and Eastern Europe into Britain. At that time there was
strong xenophobia. This dislike of foreigners has always been a factor in
the insular British mentality. There was a conservative antisemitism
resistant to the Jew as an alien who could never be fully English. The
Aliens Bill of 1905, directed at halting the immigration of Russian Jews,
was a case in point.
"In the twentieth century, after the Russian Revolution, a linkage between
Jews and communism that was intertwined with antisemitism became a
pronounced theme in British public discourse. There was considerable
publicity around the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. This ended when
Philip Graves, a London Times correspondent, exposed it as a forgery.
Until then, one could read editorials in The Times that were based on the
belief that Britain had spilled much blood in the First World War only to
fall into the hands of a world Jewish conspiracy-a Pax Judaica!
"Similar accusations had been made before that, during the Boer War in
South Africa. There were insinuations that a small clique of cosmopolitan
Jewish financiers had dragged the British Empire into a futile, useless,
expensive, and wholly destructive war for their own narrow financial
interests. It was stressed that these .foreign Jews' were well-connected
in the upper echelons of British politics. Such claims could also be heard
from leading figures in the emerging British Labour Party and trade
unions, which were promoting an antiwar sentiment resonant with
"In the literature around 1900, one often finds examples of a full-fledged
left-wing conspiracy theory in which British imperialism is being
manipulated and controlled by .Anglo-Hebraic' financiers. The entire issue
was connected to the discovery of gold in South Africa. This theory was
promoted by distinguished English intellectuals, enlightened journalists
and writers, as well as the prominent liberal economist John Hobson.
"The entire episode shows striking similarities with trends in left-wing
political circles in recent years. The radical Left asserts that former
prime minister Tony Blair was led by the nose into a disastrous,
neo-imperialist war in Iraq by a clique of rich British and American Jews.
The so-called American neoconservative conspiracy had spilled over to
Britain, serving Ariel Sharon and the Likud government that was then in
power in Israel. British trade unionists, then and now, proved susceptible
to this kind of conspiracy theory."
"The theme of .warmongering Jews' became especially popular in the 1930s
with the rise of British fascism under its aristocratic leader, Sir Oswald
Mosley, who came originally from the Left. British fascism was stopped by
active mobilization against it. Contrary to what would happen a few years
later, the communists were among the most militant antifascists in the
East End. The Jewish community, which included many working-class Jews,
had a kind of unwritten alliance with the Left to stop fascism. That
tradition unfortunately seems to be dead and buried today.
"In the Second World War, Britain was not willing to attempt to rescue the
Jews of Europe in any meaningful way. It was not only imperial Realpolitik
that made the British close the gates of Palestine. We know that officials
in the Colonial and Foreign offices and people in the administration in
Palestine were far from immune to antisemitic sentiment while supporting
an Arab state after the 1939 White Paper.
"During the war the British government was obsessed by the fear that their
fight against Hitler could be construed as a war on behalf of the Jews. To
avoid .fighting a Jewish war' became a kind of alibi for the British
authorities to do almost nothing for the Jews. Britain's solemn commitment
to create a Jewish National Home in Palestine was in fact betrayed in the
hour of greatest need for European Jewry. This is a serious stain on the
British record, which until then had many positive sides."
Toward Israel's Creation
"After 1945-in the three years before the creation of the state of
Israel-relations between Britain and the Yishuv, the Jewish community in
Palestine, reached their lowest point. For example, in 1946 the commander
of British Forces in Palestine, Lt. Gen. Evelyn Barker, ordered his men to
avoid fraternization with Palestinian Jews and to .punish the Jews in the
manner this race dislikes as much as any, by hitting them in the pocket,
which will demonstrate our disgust for them.' Antisemitism was also
very virulent in Britain at that time.
"After the Mandatory Government in Palestine executed members of the
Irgun, a Jewish underground organization, the latter reacted by hanging
two British sergeants. This led to anti-Jewish riots in 1947 in a number
of British cities including Liverpool, Manchester, Glasgow, and London. No
lives were lost, but it was a very nasty time. Britain was far from immune
in this postwar period to the kind of antisemitism that existed elsewhere
on the European Continent, in the Americas, or the Middle East.
"Ernest Bevin, the foreign secretary in the Labour government of Clement
Attlee, was convinced that a Jewish conspiracy existed, supposedly in
alliance with the Soviet Union. A commonly held view, both in London and
Washington at that time, was that .the Jews' were determined to bring down
the British Empire. The empire did indeed crumble, though it was not due
to any Jewish conspiracy but to more mundane economic and political
factors. The war against Hitler had sapped British strength.
"Bevin made a number of antisemitic statements. He made remarks about Jews
trying to jump to the head of the queue even after Auschwitz and the
Holocaust. His attitude was also recorded by people who knew him well. The
young Labour MP Richard Crossman, who was close to Bevin, emphasized that
he was .obsessed by the Jews' and wanted to teach them a lesson they would
"Another eyewitness testimony was that of James McDonald, the first
American ambassador to Israel, who had been actively involved in the
refugee issue in the 1930s. In London, on his way to Israel in August
1948, he had a conversation with Bevin. McDonald mentions in his diaries
how shocked he was by the antisemitism emanating from the British foreign
secretary. It was hatred of Israel, of the United States and, in
particular, of the Jews.
"Winston Churchill's record on Zionism was, of course, far more positive.
But it was not as unequivocal as we often assume. There is a discrepancy
between his wonderful rhetoric and what Churchill-as a lifelong
Zionist-actually did for the Jews when he was in power. He was very
intransigent on key issues. The gates of Palestine were kept shut under
"During the Second World War, Churchill was in favor of the White Paper
and kept it in place, despite his strong condemnation of it in 1939 when
in opposition. His wartime actions regarding the Jews were no better than
those of Franklin D. Roosevelt, which is to say, unimpressive. Nor, after
becoming prime minister again in 1951, was Churchill's record on Israel
particularly brilliant, though he had the historical vision to understand
that Israel's re-creation was a major event in modern history. In
expressing its meaning Churchill was at his best."
The British Roots of "Zionism Is Nazism"
"It is important to remember that in the 1940s the .Zionism is Nazism'
libel was rather popular among highly placed Englishmen. True, the
Nazi-Zionist equation was predominantly a Soviet contribution to postwar
antisemitism. But it did not originate there. Indeed, a number of
Britishers can claim first-class honors in this field. An example is Sir
John Glubb Pasha, who was commander of the Arab Jordanian Legion fighting
against Israel in 1948. He was an upper-class conservative Englishman and
a lifelong Arabophile, with a special love for desert Arabs. He was also a
"Glubb was obsessed with the idea that Jews had anticipated Hitler's
master race theory. Nazism, in his view, was a pale copy of the Hebrew
original as revealed in Old Testament sources. In memos he sent to London
he branded Jews as Nazis who combined their East European fanaticism with
a narrow Hebraic cast of mind, based on biblical vengeance and hatred. He
described Israel from the outset as a Nazi state, as the historian Benny
Morris has demonstrated.
"Glubb was not alone. One can find in British documents similar statements
from high-ranking officials in the Palestine administration. Most probably
when all the papers of the High Commissioner for Palestine from the last
years of the Mandate are revealed, further statements of this kind will
come to light. One figure high up in the Palestine administration was Sir
Edward Grigg, later Lord Altrincham. He referred to what he called the
National Socialist character of what became the Israeli Labor Party
(Mapai) and of the Hagana (the core of the Israeli army). He saw in the
Zionist youth movements a copy of the Hitler Youth.
"The perverse theory that the Jews were not .Semites' or connected to
Palestine but descendants of the Khazars in Asia was also very popular
among important people such as Sir Edward Spears, who headed the Committee
for Arab Affairs in Britain in the late 1940s. Even today one can hear
this theory cropping up in conversations with certain members of the
British elite after a few glasses of port."
"In the 1950s and 1960s Arnold Toynbee, the renowned British philosopher
of history, was immensely popular. I had to read him at school and as an
undergraduate at Cambridge University. He came to shockingly anti-Zionist
conclusions presented in the grand style of historical generalization. As
an Englishman he felt superior to the German Gentile barbarians who had
infamously inflicted the Holocaust on the Jews. But he also claimed that
the Jews were worse than the Nazis because they had knowingly imitated
their evil deeds and become ruthless persecutors. Today, a disturbingly
large number of English people-misguided, intoxicated, and
half-brainwashed by parts of the media-would probably agree with Toynbee.
"Toynbee ranted on about the .expulsion' of the Palestinians, which he
considered a crime of a greater order than that committed by the German
Nazis! Israeli ambassador Yaacov Herzog demolished his arguments in a
debate in the early 1960s in Montreal. But the mud stuck. After all
Toynbee was an elite figure of the British establishment. He promoted
these ideas before they became fashionable. The Left only fully embraced
these distorted views after 1967.
"In the 1970s, I was actively involved in such debates when I wrote my
doctorate at University College, London. The campus war had heated up and
was at full blast in 1975 after the UN .Zionism is racism' resolution.
There were efforts to ban all Jewish societies on British campuses. This
was stopped by a militant and determined campaign. The time was not yet
ripe for the brazen antisemitism of the kind we find today in Britain and
much of Europe, but it was certainly there beneath the surface.
"In the 1970s, the anti-Zionists in Britain-some of them Jews and
expatriate Israelis-were already vilifying Israel as an .ethnic cleansing'
and .racist' state. Even then there were claims that Zionism equals
apartheid. Among the most extreme demagogues were Jewish Trotskyites, who
were the most vitriolic in their loathing for Zionism."
"It is a curious fact that Trotskyites have been influential in left-wing
circles in the UK-at least in comparison to other European countries. Only
in France does one find anything equivalent. There seems to be no obvious
reason connected to British society or culture. Perhaps it is related to
the weakness of the Communist Party, which faded quickly in the 1950s in
Britain. Unlike in France and Italy, communism was never very powerful on
the British Left. Trotskyism could therefore fill the vacuum. It is an
alternative form of communism that bears many parallels with the Stalinism
that the Trotskyites love to hate and vilify. Of course, the Trotskyites
were hunted down in the Soviet Union and eliminated by Stalinist
communists. This persecution had antisemitic undertones.
"Trotskyites have been characterized by an intense polemical energy and
have often been in the forefront of the .anti-imperialist struggle.' With
the collapse of official communism after 1990 in most parts of the world,
they saw a chance for themselves to become what they call a .revolutionary
"In their concept of the world, Zionism has for decades been inextricably
linked with global capitalism and American imperialism. These were also
the hackneyed phrases of Soviet propaganda. The communist empire has
collapsed, of course, but the Trotskyites are still running with the ball.
Their numbers are small but they have tenacity, ideological discipline,
and use clever tactics of infiltration. They have practiced these more
effectively in recent decades in the UK than perhaps anywhere else.
Trotskyites infiltrated the Labour Party and the trade unions in the
pre-Blair era. We see the bitter fruits in boycott actions today against
Israel, sparked by people who went through this anti-Zionist
indoctrination and have passed it on.
"Trotskyites are organized in the Socialist Workers Party, which was very
active in the 1970s. It has become a larger political factor in recent
decades. I watched the huge antiwar demonstration in London in February
2003. The two main organizers were the Muslim Association of Britain-close
to the Muslim Brotherhood-and the Socialist Workers Party. They formed a
Marxist-Islamist alliance against the war in Iraq and on the issue of
Palestine-which was a major unifying factor. In my forthcoming book on
global antisemitism since 1945 I analyze this .Red-Green Axis' at
"In the demonstration there were antisemitic insinuations and intonations
in the slogans and catchwords used. The protest came at the time when the
.cabal' theory that the Jews had seized control of American and British
foreign policy was being widely advanced. It was crudely asserted in
Britain, Europe, the Middle East-and to a lesser degree in the United
States-that Bush's war in Iraq was being fought on Israel's behalf. This
echoes the antisemitic notions of the late 1930s about .warmongering Jews'
pushing the West into an unnecessary conflict with Nazism."
The Respect Party
"There is also a relatively new party called Respect led by MP George
Galloway from Scotland. He was on the left of the Labour Party before he
went independent. Galloway at one time received generous assistance from
Saddam Hussein and defended him regularly on British television. He has
always been a militant anti-Zionist, an antiglobalist, and is ferociously
anti-American. The actual name of his Islamist-Marxist movement is a
complete misnomer. The Respect Party shows no respect for anyone, much
less for Jews or Israel, which it constantly vilifies.
"Galloway is an intellectual lightweight and rabble-rouser. He sees a
revolutionary potential in the Muslim immigrants in Britain, a kind of
.substitute proletariat' that could help revive the lost dreams of
international socialism. Being against Israel and America is what brings
the far Left and radical Islamists together. They have very little in
common on issues such as feminism, attitudes toward homosexuals, or
"Then there is the more general Muslim contribution to antisemitism in
Britain, which is growing all the time and has become a significant
factor. The exploration of Muslim attitudes in the UK is still in its
infancy. Nevertheless, it appears that close to half of British Muslims
believe in a Jewish conspiracy that dominates UK media and politics.
The percentage of Muslim perpetrators of violent antisemitic acts is
nearly ten times greater than the Muslim percentage of the general
population. Muslims from Britain have been involved in a series of
high-profile cases. One leading terrorist was Omar Sheikh, the alleged
mastermind of the beheading of the American Jewish journalist Daniel Pearl
in Karachi. The horrific video emphasized Pearl's Jewish origins. Sheikh,
an Anglo-Pakistani, was born and bred in Britain and educated at the
London School of Economics.
"In 2003 Abdullah al-Faisal, a black Jamaican who had converted to Islam
was tried on charges of racial hatred and incitement to murder Jews in a
London criminal court. His videotapes included statements about the need
to kill .filthy Jews.' He also called for the murder of Hindus, another
target of Muslim extremists in Britain.
"Al-Faisal encouraged British Muslims to carry out bombings in Israel. One
of his cassettes was prophetic. He called upon British citizens to fly
into Israel and carry out mass murder as a contribution to the global
jihad and to Allah. Not long afterward, two British Muslims executed a
suicide bombing at Mike's Place, a bar on the Tel Aviv waterfront. I was
the historical adviser for a British TV documentary that dealt with this
topic in 2003.
"At the other extreme, the far-Right British National Party sees a climate
emerging where it might do better than in the past. The fascists would
frankly like to see a Britain without Muslims. On the other hand, they
also see eye to eye with many Muslim extremists on issues concerning
Israel and the Jews. These British fascists admire Osama bin Laden."
The BBC and Other Media
"Since the Second Intifada, the BBC as well as some major British
newspapers have reported daily on Israel in an often tendentious, biased,
and one-sided fashion. Under no circumstances will the BBC refer to any
act of Hamas or other Palestinian terrorist organizations as terrorism.
These killers are always referred to as militants, which has trade-union
connotations in Britain. It is the term used when, for instance, shop
stewards advocate a factory strike.
"Within the distorted BBC system, the reporting of Israeli civilian
fatalities and Palestinian suicide attacks made them seem no more than
minor pinpricks compared to the retaliations by Israel, the definitive
.rogue state.' The BBC invariably disconnects jihadi terrorism from any
notion that it is part of a hate culture and the result of ideological
indoctrination. The explanation is that these murderous deeds are driven
by the relentless, .racist actions' of the Israeli government. It is
Palestinian misery and oppression that allegedly brings about suicide
bombings and other terrorist attacks. I believe this is a false,
simplistic, and one-sided account. Terrorism is mentioned without
connection to an ideology and the issue of antisemitism in the Arab or
Islamic world is virtually nonexistent."
The Jewish Lobby
"Another favorite topic of the British media is the power of the Jewish
lobby. One well-publicized example occurred when the veteran Labour MP Tom
Dalyell said in a 2003 interview in Vanity Fair that Tony Blair was
surrounded by a .cabal' of Jewish advisers. Of the three people he
mentioned, only one was Jewish, Lord Levy.
"A second exemplar, Peter Mandelson, did have a Jewish ancestor but never
claimed to be a Jew; while the third was Foreign Minister Jack Straw, whom
many Jews consider anti-Israeli. Straw, it turned out, did have a Jewish
grandfather but had never advertised the fact. Dalyell claimed these
people were linked up with the neocons in Washington in a pro-Israeli
Jewish world conspiracy. Many others on the British Left have held
virulently anti-Israeli views, including former minister Claire Short who,
at one point, blamed the Jewish state for global warming!
"There are exceptions to the anti-Israeli attitude. The most important was
former prime minister Tony Blair, who was as sympathetic to Israel as one
can reasonably be under the circumstances. The paradox is that, while
Blair and his successor Gordon Brown have been pro-Israeli and pro-Jewish,
Britain is still one of the leaders of current European antisemitism. That
is the sobering reality and it needs to be honestly addressed.
"There is much to be said for the claim that Blair's support for Israel
during the Second Lebanon War was the straw that broke the camel's back
and brought him down as prime minister. He was undefeated in elections yet
had to resign under pressure from his own party. Blair and Brown fit into
a line of statesmen who came out of the British Christian tradition, which
has a historic affinity with Zionism. These leaders include Arthur
Balfour, David Lloyd George, Winston Churchill, Harold Wilson, and
Margaret Thatcher-individuals of vision and great political talent. In my
opinion they represent the best in the British political tradition.
"Britain can also pride itself on the publication of the Report of the
All-Party Inquiry into Anti-Semitism, which did a fair and thorough-though
not perfect-job of investigating the rise of anti-Jewish sentiment in the
UK. I gave extensive evidence to that inquiry, though for some reason the
recording equipment did not function properly and hence there was only a
brief summary in the final document. The Report does not contradict
anything I have been saying, though it was too soft on Muslim antisemitism
and lacked any historical perspective."
"Among those who have contributed to the current hostile mood is Ken
Livingstone, the mayor of London until May 2008. In the 1970s, he knocked
on my door to ask for my vote in a local North London election. It turned
out he was a passionate admirer of Leon Trotsky and was enthused to learn
that I had just written a book on the Bolshevik leader-the kind of Jew he
could empathize with-a radical leftist, an international socialist, and an
"A few years later he became a coeditor of the Labour Herald, the Labour
Party's paper in London. In 1982, during the First Lebanon War it
published on its front page a caricature of then-Israeli prime minister
Menachem Begin in full SS uniform with the skull-and-bones insignia on his
head. He was standing atop a mountain of skulls. The caption was in big,
black Gothic script: .The Final Solution.' Underneath it Begin was saying:
.Who needs shalom when you have Reagan behind you?' This cartoon could
have come straight out of Pravda.
"Livingstone always presents himself as an antiracist. He claims to be
against any form of discrimination that affects minorities and outsiders.
Supposedly he was the friend of gays, lesbians, new immigrants,
Afro-Caribbeans, and Muslims. Yet Livingstone has often related to
Anglo-Jewry as a kind of Israeli fifth column in Britain and as
accomplices of its .racist' policy.
"Livingstone not long ago gratuitously insulted a Jewish reporter of the
Evening Standard by likening him to a concentration-camp guard. Even
though then-prime minister Tony Blair asked him to apologize to the Jewish
community for his offensive remarks, he consistently refused to do so. On
the contrary, he insisted on attacking Ariel Sharon as a .war criminal'
and it didn't hurt him with the general public in Britain.
"Another case concerned his remarks about the Reuben brothers, who are
property developers in London. They are of Iraqi Jewish origin and have
lived in Britain for forty years. Livingstone was apparently exasperated
by the prices they charged. He accused them of parasitic behavior and told
them to .go back to the Iran of the ayatollahs.' At that time Iran's
president was already threatening to wipe Israel off the map.
"On two occasions Livingstone gave red-carpet treatment to Sheikh Youssef
Qaradawi whom he invited to London. This Egyptian sheikh lives in Qatar
and has supported suicide bombings as being consistent with Islam. He was
presented by Livingstone as a .progressive' and the kind of moderate who
could positively influence British Muslims. In reality, Qaradawi is a
bigot and a homophobe as well as being a blatant antisemite.
"What is interesting is that in Britain, as in much of Europe, the
proclaimed antiracism of the left-wing variety often feeds the new
antisemitism-which is primarily directed against Israel. Of course, if one
suggests that such leftists are antisemites in disguise, they are likely
to become enraged and retort that one is .playing the antisemitic card.'
This has become a codeword for saying, as it were, .You are a dishonest,
deceitful, manipulative Jew' or a .lover of Jews.' Zionists supposedly use
the .accusation of antisemitism' to distort and silence the fully
justified criticism of Israel and its human rights abuses. The word
.criticism' in this context is misplaced. It is a euphemism or license for
the demonization of Israel. And that in turn is a major form of
antisemitism in our time."
* * *
 Sidney Sugarman, The Unrelenting Conflict: Britain, Balfour, and Bevin
(Sussex: Book Guild, 2000), 200.
 James G. McDonald, My Mission in Israel, 1948-1951 (London: Gollancz,
 See Rory Miller, Divided against Zion (London: Frank Cass, 2000),
 The Times, 7 February 2006.
 Report of the All-Party Parliamentary Inquiry into Anti-Semitism
(London: HM Stationery Office, Ltd., September 2005).
* * *
Prof. Robert Solomon Wistrich has held the Neuberger Chair for Modern
European and Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem for
almost twenty years. Since 2002 he has been director of the Vidal Sassoon
International Center for the Study of Antisemitism at the Hebrew
University and is editor of its journal Antisemitism International. He is
the author and editor of many prize-winning books and over three hundred
academic articles. His most recent published book, Laboratory for World
Destruction: Germans and Jews in Central Europe (University of Nebraska
Press), appeared in May 2007. Prof. Wistrich has just completed a book on
global antisemitism to be published by Random House at the end of 2008.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
3/29/2009 12:32:00 PM
1. Allow us to introduce you to Hannah Safran
), an aging Israel-hating
far-leftist "academic." She teaches feminizt dogma at the Galilee
Academic College in Afula and used to spout her nonsense at the "Women's
Studies" program at the University of Haifa. Safran is one of the most
open detesters of Israel pretending to be an academic in Israel. She is a
founder and long time activist in the pro-terror "Women in Black" group,
which has never heard of a terrorist atrocity against Jews it does not
think they deserved.
A few days ago Safran had a column in the leftwing Neo-Nazi web
magazine Counterpunch, published by Alexander Cockburn and his band of
jihad cheerleaders. The title of her rant is, and I am not making this
up: "Ready to be Traitors: The Israeli Resistance." It can be read at
http://counterpunch.com/safran03262009.html . In it she calls for
Israeli "resistance" against Israel, the code word used by leftists for
In it she also hails the violent "anarchists" who attack police and
soldiers in their efforts to sabotage Israel's security wall and so allow
the Palestinian mass murderers to enter Israel. She proclaims an
infantile anti-Ashkenazi racism in her rant: "These groups have not yet
been able to formulate a common platform for change, and they are facing
the resistance of the hegemonic Ashkenazi (Jews of European descent)
establishment, which refuses to recognize their existence and importance.
But in spite of their orchestrated attempt to make the entire
left-peace-resistance movement invisible, these social forces, together
with the new left, might one day group together to effect change." Then
without blinking an eye she denounces Israel itself for being racist:
"The .only democracy in the Middle East., as Israel portrays itself, does
not allow dissent. If you are against its military offensive you are
immediately branded a traitor. From this, the idea follows that all
Palestinian citizens of Israel who oppose the war should be stripped of
their citizenship. Such racism is what all of us, Jews and Arabs, have to
suffer when we decide to publicly oppose the war." She concludes with a
salute to Israeli traitors (HER term for them) and calls for much more
treason against Israel. She issued this call for treason on the web page
of a magazine that claims Jews were behind the 911 attacks on the US.
(Safran has mooed there before - see this
Please take a moment and let the heads of Galilee College know what you
think of this creature teaching the hapless students at their college. To
do so write
Dr. Gen (ret.) Baruch Levy Chairman, Board of Trustees
Dr. Joseph Shevel President
Mr. Zalman Gordon Academic Director, Social Development Programmes
By the way, Galilee College has a track record of moonbatism . it used to
feature Ilan Pappe in some of its special programs and it still has a
massive collaboration effort with "Palestinian" organizations (see
Safran's email is: email@example.com
The new Minister of Education in the Netanyahu government is
to be Likud member Gideon Sa'ar. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org. His
fax is 972- 2-6753525
Why not urge him to make his first act in office an unconditional demand
from Gelilee College that Hannah Safran be canned at once for her
celebration of treason?
Safran is cited at this excellent web site in trying to explain her
treasonous agitprop against Israel:
There she says (in 2006): "Without this, I don't have a life. I am
scared. I am desperate," said Safran, 56, who was making anti-war signs in
Hebrew, Arabic and English at a women's center in Haifa days before the
July 29 protest. "This is what gives me the ability to cope, the hope that
we can change, that our life has meaning."
Translation: I am bored and do not know what to do with myself and
destroying Israel is my hobby.
2. One of the biggest national disgraces in Israel is the "Israel
Prize," a prize generally awarded to the very worst anti-Israel extremists
in Israel from various fields. When the Left is in office, its hacks
award the prize to leftist haters of Israel, and when the Likud is in
office it usually does exactly the same thing. Zev Sternhell, an
anti-democratic McCarthyist who opposes freedom of speech for those with
whom he disagrees, got one. Junkyard "sculptor" Yigal Tomarkin, who
thinks Orthodox Jews deserved to be annihilated by the Germans, got one.
Judd "Destroy Israel" Ne'eman, a film professor at Tel Aviv University,
also just got one. Ultra-anti-Semite Shlomo Sand, a Stalinist
pseudo-historian at Tel Aviv University who just published a book claiming
that the Jews are not a people but the Palestinian "nation" goes back at
least to Adam, will no doubt get the prize next year. Unless it goes to
Ariel Toaff for his book claiming that Jews drank gentile blood for
Passover. The above mentioned Hannah Safran has already gotten a "human
rights award" from the anti-Israel Association for Civil Rights in Israel
so she could still get an Israel Prize from the Likud.
In any case, as her last act of abasement while she is still Minister
of Education, Yuli Tamir, better known for her endorsements of female
"circumcision" and her insisting that Israeli children be taught that the
existence of their country is a catastrophe or Nakba, has decided to give
the Israel Prize to the "Israel Institute of Democracy." The IID is a
partisan far-leftist "think tank" that cranks out policy paper after
policy paper to endorse the Far left's political agenda. It is the main
force pushing its own "Consensus Constitution" and hopefully this
monstrosity is at least dead. It is a consensus constitution in the sense
that there is consensus among the leftists at IID that it is a good idea.
It has strongly supported crackdowns on the use of freedom of speech by
anti-Oslo dissidents (or what it calls incitement), supports affirmative
action, and supports "political education" in Israeli schools. Political
education means guess what. The IID often supports the agenda of Israel's
radical Arabs. It is a leading agitator against Israel's using
"disproportionate force" against Hamas terrorists. It has supported
Palestinians from the "territories" who sue Israel for damages caused by
Israel's fighting terror.
The IID is "qvelling" that other leftists think that it is deserving of
the Israel prize. See
3. The mall Marxists and the pre-adolescent Trotskyites were out in
large numbers in London yesterday, and their ilk will be out in other
cities soon, to demand an end to capitalism. Their slogan is "Capitalism
is not Working."
Let me rephrase that. A group of over-fed pampered people showed up at
the London protest in their Nikes and designer jeans and video cameras,
carrying their Blackberries and advanced cell phones, where their most
common health problem is having TOO MUCH to eat, having driven downtown in
their cars with their MP3s blasting, hoping the protest ends before they
need to take off for their seaside vacations or at least so they can catch
some good movies on their DVDs, and they ran about London screaming that
capitalism does not work.
4. Selective condemnation of those who "betray their party":
5. Column from the Left's favorite new bogeyman:
6. Update on the Ward Churchill affair:
A Radical Takes the Stand Article
more in Life & Style Email Printer Friendly Share:
By KATHERINE MANGU-WARD
Old hippies with gray-streaked ponytails, sporting their best Indian
radical-chic finery, arrived early and waited in a marble hallway of the
District Court here, chowing down on breakfast burritos from the
cafeteria. They came to support Ward Churchill -- you could tell by their
"I Am Ward Churchill" buttons -- in his wrongful-termination lawsuit
against his former employer, the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Ken FallinAlready a big man in his own field of Native American studies,
Mr. Churchill achieved national notoriety in 2005 when an essay he wrote
on the afternoon of 9/11 resurfaced. He had described some of the people
who died in the World Trade Center that day as "little Eichmanns," a
reference to a technocrat who facilitated the killing of Jews in Nazi
Germany. The essay's gist was that, on that day, America got what was
coming to it.
An uproar inevitably followed. But something else followed as well: a
close look at Mr. Churchill's academic career. Charges of shoddy
scholarship, false credentials and even plagiarism surfaced. Eventually,
the University of Colorado let Mr. Churchill go. His lawsuit is the final
chapter in this drama.
And so the aging activists gathered here. Mr. Churchill walked among them
in the hallway outside the courtroom on Wednesday, eating a burrito. He
could be overheard chatting about traffic and politely inquiring about the
well-being of one of his more prominent supporters, attorney Lynne
Stewart, currently out on bail after being convicted in 2005 of passing
messages between her client, Egyptian cleric Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman, and
a terrorist organization.
Mr. Churchill's family was here, too. On Wednesday, Natsu Taylor Saito,
Mr. Churchill's wife and an ethnic-studies professor at the University of
Colorado, was called to the stand. As the storm broke over Mr. Churchill's
essay, titled "Some People Push Back: On the Justice of Roosting
Chickens," the department (in which Mr. Churchill also taught) received
many threats, she said, and no university support. She also spoke of her
family's exhaustion and despair at being left alone to defend themselves.
Whether the university offered the ethnic-studies department "support" or
not, it is certainly true that the administration did not, at first, rush
to defend Mr. Churchill's First Amendment rights. At the time, the
Colorado legislature had called the essay "evil and inflammatory"; Gov.
Bill Owens had denounced it, too. At first, the Regents of the University
of Colorado issued an apology and promised an inquiry into Mr. Churchill's
actions. Eventually, it determined that Mr. Churchill had every right to
say what he had said.
By this time, however, Mr. Churchill's offensive essay had goaded angry
readers to examine his larger role as a scholar and activist. A few raised
legitimate concerns about the quality of his scholarship. To take three
examples: Mr. Churchill has long contended that Capt. John Smith or his
agents, in the 17th century -- and later the U.S. military -- handed out
smallpox-infected blankets to Native Americans with genocidal intent, but
he supported his claim by citing only the Native American "oral tradition"
of the Wampanoag and Mandan tribes. Mr. Churchill also plagiarized the
work of a Canadian professor. And finally, he ghostwrote an essay and then
cited it in his own work as third-party confirmation of his views. As a
succession of people testified this week, once such complaints had been
submitted to the university in writing, administrators were duty-bound to
investigate. They appointed a committee to do so, and it found enough
truth in the charges to dismiss Mr. Churchill in 2007. He filed suit the
Without the controversy over the 9/11 essay, would Mr. Churchill have been
fired over otherwise unrelated charges of academic sloppiness and
dishonesty? Mr. Churchill and his lawyers say "no" and demand that he be
reinstated. In the second sentence of its report, the university's
investigative committee admits that there is no way to separate the
original furor from the subsequent investigation, noting "its concern
regarding the timing and, perhaps, the motives for the University's
decision to initiate these charges at this time." Still, it asserts that
Mr. Churchill's scholarly malfeasance was real and serious.
From the stand, Todd Gleason, the dean of Arts and Sciences, noted that no
academic inquiry originates from strictly neutral ground: "It's only
common sense to expect that the source of most complaints against a
faculty member is going to be someone who nine times out of 10 has a
personal or professional disagreement with the author." Pure motives can
be in short supply, even in the supposedly collegial world of higher
education. And which is worse: To check out some footnotes after an
inflammatory essay brings shame on your profession, or to submit a
complaint about a colleague's work after he snubs you in the faculty
As the specifics of his academic fraud started to circulate in 2006, Mr.
Churchill began to lose support among his colleagues. Fewer and fewer
signatures appeared on each new petition circulated on his behalf. Mr.
Churchill has periodically expressed surprise that his friends in the
ivory tower sided against him. And perhaps he is right to wonder why they
were suddenly so preoccupied with rigorous, bureaucratic adherence to
university policy, after he had enjoyed so many years of promotions and
awards in the ethnic-studies department without regard for the usual
credentialing and publication requirements.
Mr. Churchill, for his part, remains unrepentant. On the stand this week,
he repeated his position that the attack on the World Trade Center was
"perfectly predictable," saying: "When you bring your skills to bear for
profit, you are the moral equivalent of Adolf Eichmann." And he refused to
acknowledge that the objections to his scholarship had merit, explaining
that history written by white men is full of lies and that he is simply
trying to correct for that historical imbalance. The "technocratic corps
at the very heart of America's global financial empire," dead in the World
Trade Center, were legitimate targets, Mr. Churchill insisted, while he is
an innocent victim. Perhaps, instead, it was simply that Mr. Churchill's
own chickens finally came home to roost.
Ms. Mangu-Ward is associate editor at Reason magazine.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
3/26/2009 07:49:00 PM
(see web page for links and illustrations)
Stalinism Day at Tel Aviv University
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Stalinism Day at Tel Aviv University
To the right, the President of Tel Aviv University's notion of academic
research and scholarship
On March 25, 2009, Tel Aviv University ran a full-day indoctrination
session in communism, misrepresented as an "academic conference" to
discuss the history of the Israeli communist party. We had been posted
numerous warnings about this before it was held.
Every single speaker at the conference was either a member of Israel's
Stalinist party MAKI or a pro-communist fellow traveler. The most
"moderate" speaker was Yair Tsaban, a leader in Israel's Marxist MAPAM
party, and he was booed by the communists in the audience.
When challenged by a worldwide wave of public denunciation and criticism
for allowing the campus to be used for such purposes, the president of Tel
Aviv University, Prof. Zvi Galil, issued a defense of this communist
indoctrination congress, defending it as a legitimate academic activity.
(His letter was reprinted here). In part he justified it because the
Zionist scholar Anita Shapira would be participating in it. But Shapira
merely greeted the participants at the beginning of the "conference" and
dd not lecture about the subject at hand.
News details about the conference had appeared in the media before it took
place, including here and here. The complete program for the event, with
the list of speakers, can be seen here. The defense by the Tel Aviv
University president of the misuse of campus facilities for Stalinist
indoctrination was all the more alarming when coming from the very same
campus officials who had censored a student protest exhibit exactly a year
ago about human rights abuses in communist China and had ordered the
student exhibit shut down. Academic freedom at Tel Aviv University is
The content of the talks at the "conference" was exactly as expected.
Several of the speakers were party henchmen from the Stalinist MAKI party
and not academics at all. Representatives of the communist party were on
the scene distributing party "literature" and propaganda books. Every
single speaker celebrated and praised communism, and most spent time
attacking Zionism, Israel and Israel's very existence, praising Arab
terrorism as "resistance" to Zionist colonialism.
Among the speakers was Elana Kaufman, who teaches a pro-Arab "narrative"
course at Israel's Open University. She had been a collaborator with the
late pro-terror Marxist sociologist Baruch Kimmerling, best known for his
long pseudo-academic fabrication of the history of the "Palestinian
nation." She spoke at the conference about the communist party's wonderful
role in organizing Arab resistance to Zionism. She denounced Zionism for
coercing the Arabs to become dependent upon the marketplace and for
stealing their lands. She hailed the communist party for organizing the
early violent "Land Day" protests among Arabs to "protest" Israel's
supposed policy of "inflicting injury" on its Arab population. This led to
the party's greatest electoral victory, she said, in which it won 80,000
votes in 1976.
She was followed by Dr. Amal Jamal, currently head of the department of
political science at Tel Aviv University. He bewailed the fate of the poor
Arab communists in Israel. He objected that the communist party is first
and foremost the communist party of Jews, a rather curious observation
given its voter support and membership makeup, and objected that Arabs who
wish to be communists also have to be Israeli.
He was followed by Samiach Al-Qassam, presented as a "Druse poet," whose
lecture was supposed to be on "literature and politics." Instead, his talk
was devoted to the thesis that Jews and Arabs could not be equal in Israel
and so Israel should be dismantled and enveloped within a larger
bi-national Palestinian state with an Arab majority. In other words, a
sort of Middle Eastern version of Rwanda.
Al-Qassam denounced President Obama and ex-President Bush of the United
States for trying to create a Palestinian state alongside Israel instead
of a state that replaces Israel. He then launched a lengthy sycophantic
celebration of how wonderful communists are, how they not only defended
the downtrodden workers but even the middle class. He declared that the
Israeli communist is the true patriot, whereas American capitalists are
phony patriots. He then bragged about how he had been hosted by the
Romanian dictator Ceau.escu and by Russian's Gobachev, although claimed
that as a poet he feels somewhat constricted in formal communist
discipline. Thus when he was in Romania he preferred to dine with his
Romanian security service guide and not with Comrade Ceau.escu himself.
Later in the "open discussion" section of the "conference," Al-Qassam also
bragged about how he had been arrested and later was on Israel's wanted
list for his seditious and illegal activities. Al-Qassam insisted that
Israel stop looking upon the Hamas and the Fat'h as its enemies and
instead should look upon the Jewish political right, which he described as
"racists," as the true enemy. To loud applause he added that while he
understands the suffering of the family of Gilad Shalit, the Jews have to
understand that there are 11,000 Palestinian "Gilad Shalits" imprisoned by
Israel. In other words, Gilad Shalit is the moral equivalent of imprisoned
mass murderers, terrorists, bombers and ordinary criminals in prison.
He was followed by Marxist Gadi Algazi, a radical anti-Zionist from Tel
Aviv University's department of history. Algazi has long denounced Zionism
as a form of colonialism and vilifies every attempt by Israel to defend
its civilians from terrorists, including Israel's security fence. For a
sampling of his anti-Israel propaganda writings, see this. His talk was
devoted to celebrating the Arab "resistance" to Israel and to Zionism, a
resistance that just happens to take the form more often than not of
atrocities and terrorism.
Yair Tsaban, who had long served in the Knesset as a representative of the
Marxist MAPAM party and later of MERETZ (into which MAPAM was merged)
enraged the hostile audience, most of whose members made little secret of
their violent anti-Israel political sympathies. He was the closest thing
to a Zionist participating in the conference. Tsaban aroused the enmity of
much of the audience when he suggested that commemorations for any
suffering of Palestinians be separated from Israel's own celebrations of
its Independence Day. For this he was booed and denounced as
Dov Chanin, a Stalinist Knesset member from Israel's Maki-Hadash communist
party, gave a dry boilerplate denunciation of Western capitalism as the
true danger to human civilization, because capitalism is based on the
pursuit of profit for its own sake. Communism, he insists, represents the
future hope of humanity.
Want to let the heads of TAU know what you think about all this?
Tel Aviv University:
President, Professor Zvi Galil
Tel Aviv University
P.O. Box 39040
Tel Aviv 69978
Fax: 972-3-6422379 and 972-3-642-2752
Rector: Prof. Dany Leviatan
Tel Aviv University
P.O. Box 39040
Tel Aviv 69978
American Friends Offices of Tel Aviv University:
Other "Friends of" Groups: http://www.tau.ac.il/friends-eng.html
2. I frequently describe Ehud Barak as being personally responsible
for the firing of 4000 rockets at northern Israel. His policies directly
produced that and made him morally responsible for those rockets as if he
had fired them with his own hand. Ditto for Ehud Olmert (and also Ehud
Barak) regarding the 8000 Qassam rockets fired from Gaza at the children
of southern Israel. And ditto for them being responsible for Gilad Shalit
rotting in captivity.
Some people object to this characterization of Israeli political leaders.
The Talmud, however, is on MY side in this!
I owe a large hat tip to Jeff Jacoby, columnist for the Boston
Globe, who drew my attention to this:
Here is a Plautian teaching if there ever was one:
The story of Gedalia b. Achikam is told in Jeremiah 40 and 41. Gedalia
was warned by Yochanan b. Kare'ach that a Jewish traitor named Yishma'el
b. Netanya was plotting to kill him. Gedalia refused to believe it.
warned him again, and asked for permission to preemptively kill Yishma'el,
pointing out that if Gedalia were killed, it would prove a disaster for
remaining Jews in Judea ("ve-avda she'erit yehuda"). Gedalia refused.
Sure enough, Yishma'el murdered Gedalia, and slaughtered many other Jews
as well, dumping their bodies in a mass grave.
Now check out the gemara in Niddah 61:
One taught: That was the pit which Ishmael the son of Nethaniah had
filled with slain bodies, as it is written, "Now the pit wherein
Ishmael cast all the dead bodies of the men whom he had slain by the
hand of Gedaliah." But was it Gedaliah that killed them? Was it
in fact Ishmael that killed them? . But owing to the fact that he
should have taken note of the advice of Johanan the son of Kareah
did not do so Scripture regards him as though he had killed them.
A perfect lesson, no?
3. Netanyahu betrays his voters:
4. More Israeli auto-annihilation - paying army "salaries" to leftist
traitors who refuse to serve in the army:
5. Dersh on anti-Israel "Investigations":
6. Rushing aid to the HAMAS:
7. Much too little, much too late:
RAMALLAH, West Bank . Israel rounded up 10 Hamas leaders in the West Bank
early Thursday, two days after indirect talks between Israel and the
Islamic militant group on a prisoner swap broke down.
Among those detained were four Hamas lawmakers, a university professor and
a former Hamas deputy prime minister.
8. Interesting column at the Jewish Week:
9. What Israel Lobby?
10. http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/130500 New health
care program by Palestinian Authority
11. From a moderate:
12. Israeli Philistines: