Israeli ambassador Isaac Bachman published a profoundly Islamophobic Facebook post (Haaretz Hebrew coverage) which I read thanks to Max Blumenthal and Dima S. He’s now deleted the post and replaced it with a mealy-mouthed “explanation” claiming his original post wasn’t directed against all Muslims (it was) but only against Muslim terrorists.
To be clear, this isn’t quite as bad as the foul, noxious hasbara hate emanating from Israel’s Dublin embassy. It’s not as flamboyant as that. But in its own way, it comes close to the Tinari-Modai “product” for anti-Muslim prejudice.
The opening section of his post repeats the stale claim of Islamophobes world-wide that the vast majority of terror in the world is Islamist. That, of course, discounts thousands of other acts of terror by religious, nationalist groups who are not Muslim. Among them, the IRA, Israeli settlers, anti-Castro Cubans, Uighurs, Hindu nationalists, Sikh assassins, not to mention numerous examples of state-sponsored terror from the U.S. to Israel to Russia.
Which leads to the second section. That’s where Bachman’s historical ignorance comes to the fore. He lists religions which supposedly have lived together peacefully, then follows this with religions Muslims have battled through history. I thought I would correct the historical record for his benefit:
Buddhists living with Rohingya Muslims= Problem
Israeli Jews living with Palestinian Muslims= Problem
Israeli Ashkenazi Jews living with Mizrahi Jews = Problem
Israeli Jews living with Black Hebrews = Problem
Israeli Jews living with African refugees = Problem
Israeli Jews living with Negev Bedouin = Problem
Christian Americans living with Native Americans = Problem
European Christians living with European Jews = Problem
Catholic Spaniards living with Spanish Moors (Muslims) = Problem
Catholic Spaniards living with Spanish Jews = Problem
Catholic Spaniards living with South American indigenous peoples = Problem
Indian Hindus living with Indian Muslims = Problem
Indian Hindus living with Indian Sikhs= Problem
Northern Irish Protestants living with Irish Catholics = Problem
Russians living with Chechen Muslims = Problem
Chinese Han living with Tibetans = Problem
Chinese Han living with Uighur Muslims = Problem
I got a real kick out of Bachman’s claim that Muslims in Europe are “happy,” along with the claim that Muslims in BJP-ruled India are happy as well. I guess you could tell that to the 1,000 Muslims slaughtered in Gujarat under the watchful eye of the country’s current prime minister, Nahrendra Modi.
Finally, I want to highlight Bachman’s closing statement which clearly is not Islamophobic in the least (wink-wink):
…For those who do not like to generalize – ask yourselves where are the peace pursuing Muslims and why they hardly have any voice and opinion at all on all that.
Only a rank, ignorant Islamophobe would miss the tens of thousands of Muslim individuals, organizations, mosques and national leaders who’ve denounced the Paris massacre. Nor is there any recognition from Bachman that it is these Muslims who are the vast majority of the world’s 1.3-billion Muslims. And that the Islamist fanatics are a small minority. In fact, I’d go farther to argue that one of the few places in which violent religious fanatics seem to own the major levers of power is in Israel.
Here is Bachman’s apologia of sorts. I’ll let you be the judge of how much hypocrisy, mendacity and disingenuousness there is in it:
Some clarifications, in response to the comments on this post:
There is no other country- Muslim or Arab, but Israel where Muslims live on an equal footing with full democratic and civic rights and as great contributors to our society.
My only intention in this post is to draw attention to the dangers of radical Islamist terrorism in an increasing number of places in the world. The prime victims of which are also “regular” and peaceful Muslims themselves. The reality of the threat of this terrorism has been amply demonstrated, lastly in Paris.
Those that are looking for hidden messages in my post are looking in the wrong place.
My message is that all of us, in democratic societies, will have to defend ourselves against the growing threat of Islamist fundamentalism and terrorism, as Israel has been obliged to do for decades.