28 thoughts on “The Israel Lobby, Jeremy Corbyn, and the Abuses of Anti Semitism for Character Assassination – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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    1. Hi Frank,
      This is exactly the kind of nonsense from the Telegraph that Richard mentioned in his post. Have you read it? The report is called a white wash because it concluded that “the Labour party was not overrun by anti-Semites.” Any other conclusion than that was apparently unwanted. Quit playing the innocent here.

      1. Hello Elisabeth,

        Yes I’ve read Richard’s article, and since he omitted mention of the Chakrabrati Report, I thought I’d bring it up.

        Elisabeth, have you read the Telegraph article I linked?

        Ms Chakrabrati’s nomination for a peerage weeks after her report was published raises ‘the appearance of bias’, and, her omitting her interview with Party Leader Corbyn from the report, is also suspicious.
        She had interviewed Corbyn regarding his calling Hezbollah and Hamas, his ‘friends’.

        1. Yes I read it. What he said about Hamas or Hezbollah was that he regretted using the term ‘friends’. Corbin bought her a peerage to keep that out of her report? Makes no sense, but by all means keep insinuating.

          1. Yep, the peerage was definitely for whitewashing the issue in her report. I mean, that’s clearly obvious, as it’s not like she has any history of distinguished public service in some high-profile role… oh, hold on.

          2. Hi Elisabeth,

            I relish the opportunity to have a ‘snark free’ exchange of views.

            I believe what some people in Britain are saying, is that the peerage was a reward for soft peddling Labour Party anti-Semitism in her report. At the very least the peerage nomination was poorly timed.

            Ms Chakrabrati’s own remarks also raise eyebrows, and serve as fodder for her detractors.

            Per the Telegraph, Ms Chakrabarti was asked if she had been promised a peerage, and she replied: “You can ask the question but I am going to evade it at this point.”

          3. @ Frank: I don’t think you know what anyone in Britain is saying. Jeremy Corbyn is the most egalitarian, grassroots, non-royalist politician imaginable. The idea that he would reward anyone with a peerage for anything is ridiculous. It’s like saying it’s likely Donald Trump will abandon all his businesses and move to India to cater to the poor.

            Nor do I believe that your alleged quotation is accurate. No sensible person would use the language attributed to her & I doubt very much she did. The Telegraph is Tory paper and severely prejudiced against Labour and anything reeking of the world “Palestinian.”

          4. Frank, you simply repeated your earlier insinuation, without adding any more credibility to it. What is the use of that? And you keep mentioning that ‘some people’ are saying something. Does that lend any credibility to anything? You can always find ‘some people’ to say the most crazy things. I have even heard that ‘some people’ used to say you need the blood of babies to make matzos. Now you tell me, does that lend any credibility to it?

  1. At the end of the day, the Israel lobby has reached the point where the only position it will accept from a political leader is one of groveling, unconditional support for Israel, no matter what crimes it is committing at the moment.

    …and it gets its wish! At least when it comes to America.

    Ellison was barred from the chairmanship of the Democratic National Committee and replaced with the colorless and pliant Tom Perez. Bernie Sanders won’t ever be president.

    Now they’re trying to impose the same straitjacket on Britain — but the Zionists are much less powerful there. Jews make up less than one-half of a percent of Britain’s population. Although Britain has quite a history with Palestine, at the moment, she’s simply not a significant player in the region. It’s not like here in the US, where every year, we send still more money, and every year, we talk about going to war somewhere on Israel’s behalf, and every year, we bar any effective international action to force her to obey international law and her own treaty commitments.

    Here, we’ve been brought to heel, and we serve Israel. In Britain, the concept is simply absurd. Britain just doesn’t have much to do with Israel. The equivalent would be something like demanding that the US take up the cudgel on behalf of the Romani.

    ? There are hardly any gypsies in the US. What would such an issue have to do with us?

    Hopefully, ditto for this campaign to force Britain to begin serving Israel. It’s going to fail out of sheer absurdity. It’s a distraction; Corbyn has to frame a few carefully-worded statements, and then he can move on.

  2. Of course even here in America, the term ‘anti-semite’ has been cheapened by the fact that it tends to be used as an epithet to abuse those hostile to Israel. For example, I have been labelled an ‘anti-semite’ at least twice — but not because I refused to rent my mountain cabin to Richard. It’s obviously been because of my frank and voluble hostility towards the Zionist entity.

    Naturally, the reality of life is that the presence of any perceptible racial, ethnic, or religious group implies a corresponding contingent of people who are bigoted against them. I know people who rant about Mormons. There are inarguably some virulent anti-semites out there.

    …but that can only be a reality to the extent that the ‘hated one’ is actually present. I doubt if many in Britain care about Mormons — and given that Britain only has a Jewish population of one half of one percent, the possibility of authentic anti-semitism is correspondingly reduced. Even at 2%, anti-semitism in America starts to fail for lack of a target. I know people who are simply unaware of the fact that Bernie Sanders is a Jew. ‘Jew’ isn’t a meaningful category to them.

    They CAN’T be anti-semites. Not because of innate goodness, but simply because they lack the necessary mental vocabulary. It’d be like me acquiring a ferocious dislike of the Ainu. How could I?

    Britain and the British obviously move towards that category. In Britain, ‘anti-semitism’ must be overwhelmingly what it usually is even here — a device to vilify those who are hostile towards Israel. Of course, hostility towards Israel is no more evidence of anti-semitism now than hostility towards Nazism eighty years ago would have demonstrated that one was bigoted against Germans.

    Especially in Britain, ‘anti-semitism’ is essentially a canard, an intellectually dishonest attempt to disable criticism of the otherwise indefensible.

  3. Mr Colin Wright,

    When a drunken Mel Gibson called Winona Ryder an ‘oven dodger’, you can bet that the State of Israel wasn’t on Mel’s mind. In fact, alt-Right anti-Semites like Richard Spencer love the State of Israel. That’s where Spencer and his ilk want to ship American Jews when the alt-Right start their purification of America.

    Aa you well know, anti-Semitism has been around a lot longer than the State of Israel, and it is absurd for anyone to suggest that an anti-Zionist can’t be an anti Semite as well.
    Personally, I am deeply suspicious of people who support Armenia for Armenians and the Czech Republic for Czechs, but won’t allow Israel for Jews; and BTW, one half of world Jewry now lives in Israel.

    Colin. What you can’t seem to get your head around, is that most Americans support Israel, and therefore, you really can’t fault their Representatives in Congress for supporting Israel as well.

    Lobbying is as American as apple pie, and if the pro-Israel lobby is smarter, richer and more sophisticated than the Palestinian lobby, than who’s fault is that?

    Consider also that American Jews excel in the Sciences, in Finance, in Entertainment and Industry. Consider as well, that Jews are disproportionate Nobel Prize winners.
    That said, why are you so shocked that American Jews have a strong influence on the United States government?


    1. ‘Mr Colin Wright,

      When a drunken Mel Gibson…’

      I don’t think one thing you said directly addressed anything that was in my post.

  4. amira hass from haaretz.com apparently attended the famous seder and posted an item (couldnt read it) describing what went down. perhaps someone can read it and post an open link to get another opinion, biased or not , depends
    so anyone

  5. You start to tire me out, with all these lengthy posts, I must say. I do want to react though, to your claim that a low percentage of Jews in a country means there can be no anti-semitism. That is nonsense. In Europe for instance, islamophobia is often highest in areas with hardly any Muslims. Just compare the percentages of each in former east and west Germany.

    1. ‘I do want to react though, to your claim that a low percentage of Jews in a country means there can be no anti-semitism. ‘

      I suppose that theory is flawed. However, the main point is that I don’t think anti-semitism in Britain is much of a problem. The accusation is usually little more than a device to intimidate critics of Israel.

      1. You flood us with posts, and between all the verbiage there are often remarks that are questionable, such as characterizing what happened lat week as “Jews shooting Palestinians” or something like that. That should have been “Israeli soldiers shooting Palestinians”. Words matter.

        1. ‘…there are often remarks that are questionable, such as characterizing what happened lat week as “Jews shooting Palestinians” or something like that. That should have been “Israeli soldiers shooting Palestinians”. Words matter.’

          Indeed. Words do matter. I object to the use of the term ‘Israeli’ in this way. A fifth of the Israelis are Palestinians themselves. Were any of the officers ordering this butchery Palestinian? Were any of the politicians applauding Palestinians? If polled, how many of Israel’s Palestinians would approve of the murders?

          ‘Israeli,’ in this case is indeed an inaccurate euphemism. It would be nice if the situation were otherwise, but the fact is that we are talking about not all Israelis, but the Jews of Israel.

          So ‘Israeli’ is to some extent a polite lie. Sometimes I use ‘Zionist’ — but since it’s questionable if the majority of the Jews who have found themselves in Palestine are there because of an active choice to adopt that creed, that term as well is problematical.

          Referring to the perpetrators as ‘the Jews who are in Palestine’ may rub your fur the wrong way, but it is the only formulation I can think of that’s accurate. After all, they are indubitably in Palestine, and it’s overwhelmingly the Jews who are the perpetrators of the crimes in question. Can you suggest a better term?

          1. @ Colin Wright: I do NOT accept use of the term “Jew” as a substitute for “Israeli” or “Israeli Jew.” If you persist in doing this I will consider it a comment rule violation and act accordingly. There are rules here and they are for a reason. You may not like or agree with the reason, but I make them, not you. So respect them.

          2. A term for them, referring to their ethnicity or religion? How about (in order of percentage): Jews/Druze/Muslim-Bedouin/Christians? Oh hell, let’ just call them Israeli soldiers shall we?

          3. @ Colin Wright: In fact it’s important to note that Israel is quite good at co-opting non-Jewish citizens into doing the state’s dirty work. So there are a great many Israeli soldiers who are Druze and Bedouin who serve and kill along with their Jewish brethren. There are of course numerous reasons why they serve that have to do with the nature of the state and its rewards for service. But serve they do. We shouldn’t ignore this by saying only Israeli Jews do bad things in military or police service.

    2. @ Elisabeth: I’ve asked Colin politely to restrain himself. He’s flooding the comment section and monopolizing it. I do not permit others to do this. I should not permit him to. I’m hoping Colin can exercise more self-restrain and comment a bit less and focus those comments more.

      As for the claims about anti-Semitism. There is a famous saying “anti-Semitism without Jews.” There are many countries in which anti-Semitism flourishes which have few or no Jews. As you say, the same holds true about Islamophobia.

  6. At the risk of provoking Richard into simply deleting my posts, let me further clarify something: I am not slipping in ‘Jews’ in the place of ‘Israelis’ in the hope no one will notice or something.

    I am consciously if somewhat reluctantly choosing the term. Sometimes, to type ‘Israeli’ is simply to lie. The ‘Israelis’ — not all of them — are not the ones committing these crimes. It is dishonest to imply that they are. It is in fact the Jews of that state that are. That’s an unpleasant fact, but a fact nevertheless. To deny it is to begin participating in that edifice of lies and half-truths that Israel relies on for its ideological defense.

    Simply start telling the truth, and Israel becomes a ghastly absurdity. Part of that truth is naming the killers — unpalatable as that may be.

  7. ‘@ Colin Wright: I do NOT accept use of the term “Jew” as a substitute for “Israeli” or “Israeli Jew.” If you persist in doing this I will consider it a comment rule violation and act accordingly. There are rules here and they are for a reason. You may not like or agree with the reason, but I make them, not you. So respect them.’

    Although I wasn’t aware it was a rule, I believe I have always conformed to this. Unless I am referring to Jews elsewhere, I have always tried to specify that I am talking about ‘Israeli Jews,’ or ‘Jews in Palestine,’ or sometimes ‘Zionists.’ Have I ever attributed the actions of Israeli Jews to all Jews?

    1. @ Colin Wright: Your criticisms of Israeli behavior and policies appear to favor using the term “Jew” either alone or accompanied by a suitable adjective. I disfavor using such a religious term in referring to Israelis who are Jewish unless religion plays a particularly important role in the criticism, or unless you are distinguishing them from Israelis who are not Jewish.

      1. ‘Your criticisms of Israel appear to favor using the term “Jew” alone…’

        Actually, I don’t think that’s so. Could you point me to the instance? It’s POSSIBLE I did, but I’ve tried to be scrupulous about this.

        ‘…or unless you are distinguishing them from Israelis who are not Jewish.’

        But that’s exactly my point. I do wish to distinguish those Israelis who are Jewish from those who are not. It’s absurd to associate the Palestinians of Israel with the crimes of that state. Whatever their shortcomings, they bear no culpability for those. In this context, ‘Israeli’ becomes a distortion, an evasion of the truth. It is NOT all Israelis who carry out and applaud these crimes. I get tired of reading and writing ‘Israeli’ when what is meant for all intents and purposes is ‘Israeli Jew.’ As I say, that may be unpleasant, but it is the truth.

        …and I will note that you yourself agreed (see above) that ‘Israeli Jew’ is acceptable. You merely objected to the notion that these crimes should be attributed to all Jews.

        …and before yet another self-appointed expert decides to abuse me for my imagined ignorance, yes I am aware of the Druze and Bedouin who serve in the IDF.

        Now, I’m no more interested in continuing to post at the moment than you profess to desire more posts from me. However, I do have to answer these accusations.

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