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From the European Frying Pan Into the Israeli Fire
Is There a New "New Anti-Semitism"? Part 5
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An analysis of the available data points ineluctably to the conclusion that, if Israel wants to put a stop to anti-Semitic incidents, it should stop killing Palestinians.

Former Israeli Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami denies a causal nexus between spikes in Israeli violence against Palestinians and upticks in anti-Semitic violence. But that’s what all the data collected over many years demonstrates.[1]Norman G. Finkelstein, Beyond Chutzpah: On the misuse of anti-Semitism and the abuse of history (Berkeley: 2008), pp. 77-85; for updated data, see Zack Beauchamp, “It’s Not Just Paris and Copenhagen,” Vox (16 February 2015). Each time Israel launches another of its murderous assaults, anti-Semitic incidents peak in Europe, often perpetrated by disaffected, angry Muslim youths. (Far-rightists/neo-Nazis also perpetrate a significant portion—in some countries, such as Germany, a majority—of the anti-Semitic violence.) Even the authoritative Tel Aviv University report on anti-Semitism concedes in passing: “Experience shows that as soon as the situation between Israel and the Palestinians, or some of the Arab neighbor states, turn[s] violent, the number of antisemitic incidents increase[s]”; one of the “‘trigger events’ that caused the number of recorded incidents to temporarily increase, or ‘spike’” in Britain was “an escalation in fighting between Israel and Hamas in Gaza and southern Israel in November 2012.”If in recent times, a larger fraction of these incidents is violent, it’s the blowback from the brutish fanaticism currently plaguing the Arab-Muslim world. If the goal is to contain these spurts of anti-Semitism, the prudent thing would be for Israel to cease carrying out massacres or just stop calling itself a Jewish state, or for official Jewish organizations in the diaspora to cease defending Israel’s criminal actions. It surely hasn’t helped matters that Netanyahu has now donned the mantle of “representative of the entire Jewish people.”[2]Barak Ravid, “Netanyahu: I will go to Congress like I went to Paris—to speak for all Jews,” Haaretz (9 February 2015). When Muslim youths in Europe take him at his word, and exact revenge on those whom he claims to represent, it is not right, but it’s not surprising either. Meanwhile, in the face of the alleged “new anti-Semitism” scourge, Netanyahu has been prodding Europe’s endangered Jewish species to migrate to the safe shores of their homeland in Israel. But it’s hard to make out the sense of this counsel if, also according to him, the Jewish state confronts the imminent prospect of a “second Holocaust” from Iran.


[1] Norman G. Finkelstein, Beyond Chutzpah: On the misuse of anti-Semitism and the abuse of history (Berkeley: 2008), pp. 77-85; for updated data, see Zack Beauchamp, “It’s Not Just Paris and Copenhagen,” Vox (16 February 2015).

[2] Barak Ravid, “Netanyahu: I will go to Congress like I went to Paris—to speak for all Jews,” Haaretz (9 February 2015).

(Republished from Byline by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Anti-Semitism, Israel/Palestine 
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  1. Rehmat says:

    Anti-Jewish feeling among Christians are 2,000 years old. But, according to former UN special envoy, professor Richard Falk, this feeling only began among Muslims after the creation of the Zionist entity in Palestine.

    “It’s also relevant to observe that anti-Semitism was relatively rare in the Islamic world, which upheld freedom of worship by religious minorities although claiming a hegemonic role for Islam, especially in the era of Ottoman Caliphate. Until the problem generated by Zionism, anti-Semitism was not a serious issue in the Middle East, where Jews in most Arab countries were treated as an authentic religion and a respected minority. Throughout modern history Jews suffered from European anti-Semitism with Russia considered part of Europe,” he said.

  2. For the Israeli government, that wants to encourage Jews to immigrate to Israel, antisemitic incidents in the Diaspora are a feature, not a bug.

    In fact, if there are no antisemitic incidents, they will manufacture them for this reason.

  3. Art says:

    Mr Finkelstein,

    It is incomprehensible that the Jew really believe, that after their government mass murders Palestinians that what good people feel and express is ancient anti-Semitism. How vicious – protest and you are labeled as inherantly evil.

    Labeling justified outrage as anti-Semitic is an insult – the Jew adds insult to injury. Labeling protesting Semitic ME Muslims as anti-Semitic is an even greater insult.

    Is it not, little wonder that the Jew are so disliked – even hated?


  4. Priss Factor [AKA "The Priss Factory"] says: • Website

    When Jews do wrong to others, should it be called ‘pro-semitic violence’?

  5. Priss Factor [AKA "The Priss Factory"] says: • Website

    Islam is powerful stuff, but it needs to be reformed into Prislam.

    Israel is an impressive nation, but it needs to become Prisrael.

    Indeed, the Prisrael Option is the only long-term solution to the Israel-Palestinian Crisis.

    There must be a huge one-time population swap. All Jews in West Bank go to Israel, all Arabs in Israel go to West Bank. Then, keep the big wall between the Jews and Arabs.
    And let time do the healing.

    Homogeneity alongside homogeneity is the only thing that will work.

    Diversity is problematic but not necessarily fatal. Walloons and Flemish aren’t crazy about one another in Belgium but they get along. It’s because they don’t have a history of grievance.

    But Jews and Palestinians have a recent poison-history. Palestinians were expelled from their homeland, and Jews remember many terror attacks.

    When there’s a lot of blood between two groups, only two things will work:

    Total victory for one group that also comes to demographically dominate. It’s like Anglos vs the Indians. Anglos won totally and came to vastly outnumber the Indians. Indians had no choice but to call it quits. It was too hopeless to fight on.

    In contrast, there are still enough Arabs in Israel and lots of Arabs in West Bank. Jews got lots more power, but Arabs got the numbers.
    In that case, only separation will work. Separation into two homogeneous states.

    Now, I know it’s difficult to pull off the Prisrael Option, but it is the ONLY ONE that will work.

    Why is it difficult to pull off? Jews in West Bank will shriek, and Arabs in Israel will flip out.
    Also, Jews in the West will be nervous about acknowledging that homogeneity is preferable since such an idear may spread to gentile nations as well, and that will make Jewish minorities in the West nervous.

    But the Prisrael Plan is the ONLY thing that will work.

    • Replies: @dfordoom
    , @NoseytheDuke
  6. dfordoom says: • Website
    @Priss Factor

    But the Prisrael Plan is the ONLY thing that will work.

    But there’s the danger that might bring peace. Do you really think Israel wants peace? I’m sure some Israelis would like peace, but I’m quite sure that peace is the last thing the Likud Party wants. There would no longer be any reason for them to exist.

    It’s a bit like NATO. NATO only existed because of the Cold War. When the Cold War ended there was no longer any need for NATO. But there were a lot of people whose careers and wealth depended on NATO. Therefore a new Cold war had to be created.

  7. Mark Green says: • Website

    Let’s retire the insidious word ‘antisemitism’. It’s a manipulative term. Why does Norman insist on using it? Is Finkelstein a critic?–Or an enabler?

    ‘Antisemitism’ is kosher mumbo jumbo. This word projects sin and wrongdoing on those accused of harboring ill-will towards Jews. This is absolutely wrong. Antisemitism is not a crime nor should it be. Sometimes Jews deserve all the hatred they arouse. This is equally true of Muslims or Frenchmen or Americans. So let’s dump these special words for special people since it’s discriminatory and dishonest.

    Jewish suffering and Jewish peril is neither unique and nor constant. Indeed, modern data indicates that Jews tend to be happy with their lives, culturally unified, wealthy, and powerful (when compared to other groups). So what’s with their perennial victim status? Is it not a ruse?

    Besides, the politicized concept of ‘antisemitism’ elevates Jews above the rest of humanity. This is unfair.

    People or nations should be celebrated or shunned based on their conduct. It’s that simple. There should be no special protections or guaranteed status. But ‘antisemitic theory’ functions as a kind of shield. A badge.

    Therefore, Jews must come back down to Earth with the rest of us mortals.

    The ‘Chosen People’ misconception deserves every bit as much derision as the short-lived ‘Master Race’ identity. Both kinds of thinking are dangerous. So why the double standards?

    Jews can keep their pride, but they must also be encouraged to see themselves as a people among many; not inherently ‘chosen’ or special. Being ‘chosen’ can lead a people to feelings of innate superiority. This is called racism. Let’s not indulge it. It causes friction and war.

    After that, Jews–like everyone else–must earn goodwill and then maintain it by doing good deeds. As it now stands, Jewish hubris, duplicity and arrogance are in high gear.
    Why is that? When will their victims be given equal time?

    But ‘antisemitism’ (the charge) creates fear. This in turn confers license. Who benefits? The narrative that trades in ‘antisemitic theory’ enables Zionist wrongdoing. Reject it.

    After all, people are suffering right now at Jewish/Zionist hands. Wars are being waged and orchestrated by the same people who are protected by the term/taboo of ‘antisemitism’. This strategic fallacy permits institutionalized injustice. It must be resisted.

    Antisemitism is a far less urgent problem than its opposite: Jewish supremacism. Let’s address that problem now and going forward. That is where the real crisis lies.

    • Agree: SolontoCroesus
  8. @Priss Factor

    Apparently what the world needs is a new type of US Prissident.

  9. If the Palestinians wish to end the killings, they will have stop trying to throw Jews out of Israel. The idea that Muslim anti-Semitism did not exist until the re-establishment of Israel is ahistorical.

    • Replies: @Art
  10. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    “Far-rightists/neo-Nazis also perpetrate a significant portion—in some countries, such as Germany, a majority—of the anti-Semitic violence.”

    Any sources for this claim?

    • Replies: @matt
  11. Art says:

    “If the Palestinians wish to end the killings, they will have stop trying to throw Jews out of Israel.”

    Oh my God – what nerve you have – everyone in the world knows that it is the Jews who throwing the Palestinians out of their county.

    The Jew are insufferably dishonest – PERIOD.

  12. matt says:

    “Far-rightists/neo-Nazis also perpetrate a significant portion—in some countries, such as Germany, a majority—of the anti-Semitic violence.”

    Any sources for this claim?

    Here you go:

    Next time try using the handy website ‘Google . Com’

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  13. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    That report is more than vague with regards what constitutes an “anti-semitic” attack, and the prominence of Green party politicians and left wing “human rights” groups in it makes it even more suspicious. If there had been really a violent attack by German “neo nazis” on Jewish people in Germany, it had been widely publicized. Instead all instances of attacks on the Jewish community which made the news (arson attacks on synagogues, attacks on Jewish students) would later surface to be perpetrated by Muslims (which is incidentially also the moment when the media lost interest in these cases.)
    No wonder the report also uses the word “incidences” instead of “attacks”. Guess a swastika painted on a cemetry wall is an act of anti-semitic violence.

    But well, in America we all know that white right wing militias are the greatest internal security threat.

    • Replies: @matt
  14. matt says:

    Again, you can use the amazing power of the Internet to just search for stuff to see whether it is true or not.

    Since I’m feeling generous, take a look at p. 37 here. As you can see, right wingers make up the vast majority of “politically motivated acts of violence with an antisemitic motive” (emphasis my own). Those with “foreign ideology” make up a relatively small number of these attacks, though, just as Finkelstein points out, they tend to spike during years in which Israel decides to punctuate its normal colonial brutality with a fresh burst of aerial murder.

    What I’m most suspicious of is the category of “antisemitic attacks” by “left-wing extremists”. Since these “incidents” are almost never violent (as you can see on p. 37), my guess is that these “antisemitic attacks by left-wing extremists” are mainly anti-Zionist acts of vandalism, like defacing Israeli flags or something. But that’s just a hunch; unlike you, I don’t believe things to without sufficient evidence.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  15. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Still neither definition nor examples provided what constitutes an “anti-Semitic act of violence. That as the source for these number Anetta Kahane’s (ex-Stasi informer and now Merkel’s chosen commissar to watch the internet for wrongthink) Antonio Amadeu foundation is cited does more than confirm my Initial suspicion.

    • Replies: @matt
  16. matt says:

    That as the source for these number… Antonio Amadeu foundation is cited does more than confirm my Initial suspicion.

    You are an incredibly stupid man. The Antonio Amadeus foundation is cited on p. 39 as the source for unofficial statistics on antisemitic crimes. The chart I cited (p. 37, Table 18) was in the section having to do with official statistics. If you take a look at the bottom of table 18, it gives the source: KPMK-PMD, which is the branch of the German Police that deals with politically motivated crimes (see p. 36). So these are official German government statistics.

    Are you feeling dumb yet? Good. You should be.

  17. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Still no mentioning what the actual nature of these incidences is. That nothing of this is reflected in any actual news reports is telling as are the actual overall low numbers in these statistics.
    That they have to prop up their meager data with “unofficial” numbers from such a dubious source is indicative of the ideological implications here.

    Why do you get so emotional over this? Are you somehow personally invested in upholding a certain narrative?

  18. Donna says:

    …but is it really “anti-Semitism” that increases after each of Israel’s vicious slaughters of Palestinians, or justified anger against an apartheid and genocidal state? Let’s not fall into the trap of conflating anti-Semitism with anti-Israeli policies.

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