The new anti-Semitism?

Category: Americas, Faith & Spirituality Topics: Judaism, Occupation, Racism Views: 11088
11088

Anti-Semitism, like some plague-inducing virus, is "evolving" -- or so warns Holocaust scholar Daniel J. Goldhagen in the American Jewish weekly The Forward. According to the author, the lessons of the Holocaust are slowly being forgotten and a "free-floating" globalized hatred of Jews is being spread via the Internet and television.

Goldhagen's piece, "The Globalisation of anti-Semitism," is one of the latest contributions to a growing body of reports by American and Israeli journalists and research centers purporting to show that a powerful new strain of racism is sweeping the globe. None of the authors is as disinterested as he claims: each hopes to silence criticism of both Israel and the muscular Zionist lobby groups within Washington that support Israel.

Goldhagen's trick is to turn traditional Christian anti-Semitism on its head. Where once the anti-Semites accused the Jews of being the contagion carriers -- harming their neighbors by spreading their uniquely "diseased" financial, professional and moral ideas -- now it is the non-Jew who must be quarantined. We are all anti-Semites unless we can prove otherwise.

"Globalized anti-Semitism has become part of the substructure of prejudice in the world," Goldhagen writes. "It is relentlessly international in its focus on Israel at the center of the most conflict-ridden region today, and on the United States as the world's omnipresent power."

The rise of Arab anti-Semitism, which has no obvious connection to historic European hatred of Jews, is explained away: "Essentially, Europe has exported its classical racist and Nazi anti-Semitism to Arab countries, which they then applied to Israel and Jews in general."

The process, however, has not stopped there, according to Goldhagen. "Then the Arab countries re-exported the new hybrid demonology back to Europe and, using the United Nations and other international institutions, to other countries around the world. In Germany, France, Great Britain and elsewhere, today's intensive anti-Semitic expression and agitation uses old tropes once applied to local Jews -- charges of sowing disorder, wanting to subjugate others -- with new content overwhelmingly directed at Jews outside their countries."

The only way to prove one is not infected, Goldhagen implies, is by abstaining from any criticism of Israel and Zionist influences -- Christian as well as Jewish -- currently dominating Washington's policy-making circles.

Goldhagen makes a solitary concession: that "fair" criticism can be made of Israeli policies, although who is to be the arbiter is left unclear. Even were genuine peace in the Middle East to be achieved, he believes "anti-Semitism's deep roots in the ever more globalizing consciousness, and its tenacity and plasticity, make its dissipation unlikely."

There is little basis for any of Goldhagen's conclusions. Research consistently shows that for many years the most insidious form of anti-Semitism has been directed not against Jews but Muslims. In the wake of September 11, that is truer than ever, with unthinking stereotypes of "the Arab" promoted in the mainstream media, Hollywood films and much of the language used by the White House.

A report published in 2003 by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) found a disturbing rise in hate crimes against American Arabs since 9/11. The first such report produced on this scale, the ADC document notes 700 violent attacks against Americans perceived to be Arabs or Muslims in the the first nine weeks after September 11, including several murders. It also records at least 80 cases of officials illegally removing passengers from planes and more than 800 cases of employment discrimination against Arabs.

A chapter of the report also identifies regular anti-Muslim and anti-Arab incitement in the American media and among senior politicians. Just imagine, for example, the outcry at the media headline "Why is Islam a threat to America and the West?" had it been applied to Judaism.

The success of Zionist academics and journalists in winning a disproportionate share of world attention for the plight of the Jewish Diaspora, thus eclipsing the concerns of the Arab Diaspora, is proof in itself that global Jewry today enjoys a far more protected status than its inferior Semitic cousin.

Nonetheless, it is accepted without question by scholars like Goldhagen and by policymakers in the US capital that eternal vigilance is needed in the battle to defeat anti-Semitism. Such an assumption recently led to the Orwellian double-think of senior Republican senator Rick Santorum. He announced in April that he would be introducing "ideological diversity" legislation to empower officials to cut funding to any college that allows its staff or students to criticise Israel openly.

The urgent need for legislation to protect Jews on campuses across America was justified by the Zionist pressure group the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which reported a 24 per cent rise in anti-Semitic "incidents" at US colleges last year. Even allowing for the fact that the ADL is vague about what constitutes an "anti-Semitic incident", mixing "assaults" with "harassment", this percentile rise represents a mere 21 additional incidents on college campuses in all of the United States in 2002.

One need only look at the list of Washington's most powerful lobby groups -- from the ADL and American Israel Public Action Committee (AIPAC) to the Zionist Organization of America and the American Jewish Committee -- to understand that the Jewish community and Israel have a forceful voice on Capitol Hill safeguarding their interests.

There are no equally influential Arab lobbying groups, which may explain why attacks on Muslims and the increasingly draconian administrative measures being taken against Arabs and Muslims in the US and Europe go largely unreported and thus unprotested.

What does get reported -- repeatedly -- is a supposed huge surge in anti-Semitic attacks around the world. Conferences and think-tanks endlessly draw our attention to the rise in the number of incidents. Few of these authorities agree on numbers, however. For instance, a meeting organized by the United Nations and Simon Wiesenthal Centre in Paris this month said 1,300 anti-Semitic "acts" had been identified in France alone since 2001, while Israeli researchers backed by the ADL identified 311 "serious incidents" globally last year.

Such glaring disparities stem from the inherent difficulty of defining an "anti-Semitic act." The Wiesenthal Centre apparently includes almost anything -- from a knife attack, to a journalist's vitriol against Ariel Sharon, to the mere title of the Electronic Intifada website, which the Wiesenthal Centre cited as evidence -- along with the blathering of American neo-Nazi organizations and existence of some tasteless but low budget video games apparently produced by teenagers in the Arab world -- in a report on anti-Semitism's spread through the Internet.

Israeli researchers from Tel Aviv University tightened the definition a little, admitting that there had been only 56 incidents involving a weapon around the world last year -- six more attacks than that of the previous year.

Professor Dina Porat of Tel Aviv University's Project for the Study of Anti-Semitism did at least admit there was a methodological problem in calculating anti-Semitism in quantitative terms. "I cannot say with total confidence that every incident reported in these figures was motivated by anti-Semitism," adding that a report of a monument damaged in the Netherlands "turned out to be nothing more than a homeless person looking for shelter for the night."

Unfortunately, however, whatever the definitions used, the same hyperbolic conclusions are drawn. Prof. Porat observed that most of those responsible for anti-Semitic attacks were Muslims, inadvertently suggesting that the motive was not the "age-old hatred" of Jews supposedly characteristic of Europeans, but rather, a more modern phenomenon: Muslims retaliating against fellow Jewish citizens for Israel's military strategies against the Palestinians.

Disturbing though this trend may be, it clearly is not evidence of the return of traditional European anti-Semitism -- whatever Goldhagen and the other prophets of the new anti-Semitism claim. It suggests, rather, that in the "new Europe" extreme passions are being unleashed among Arab immigrant populations by the increasingly violent and brutal policies of Ariel Sharon in the occupied territories. Jews are a symbolic and easy target for such attacks.

In other words, a microcosmic re-enactment of the Middle East conflict is being played out by a few Arabs -- remember, just 56 armed attacks last year, according to the Israeli study -- in cities like London and Paris. These Muslims, however deluded, believe they are restoring an honor to an Arab or Islamic nation that they feel has been humiliated by Israel's violence and cruelty towards the Palestinians. They feel they represent the weak striking out at a group perceived as strong. The success of Zionist lobby groups in America and the international community's failure to compel Israel to respect and obey international law only reinforce the perception of Jewish strength in the face of Arab impotence.

Nevertheless, Prof. Porat's colleague Dr. Avi Becker of the World Jewish Congress sees such incidents in more apocalyptic terms. "I don't think it would be right to speak in terms of a new Holocaust at this stage, but there is no doubt that Jewish communities are at war."

Dr. Becker was also keen to mix criticism of Israel into his pot. Apparently forgetting the toll of six million Jews in Nazi death camps, he said: "The rise of anti-Semitism in Western Europe comes in the disguise of freedom of expression. As far as I am concerned, this is the worst type of anti-Semitism."

In equally deceiving style, the Wiesenthal Centre at its conference tried to link the attacks by Muslims with the Jew hatred of 1930s Europe. The center's Rabbi Marvin Hier said: "These are critical times. Never since the end of the Second World War have we witnessed such a proliferation of anti-Semitism."

To underline his point he added: "There is nothing new about the oldest hatred. Some will hide behind what Israel is doing ... but those are just excuses, that's a ruse."

The diagnosis from Goldhagen and others is that we, the non-Jews, are doomed to our age-old racism. It's in our genes: we are born in thrall to our prejudice.

Where does such a thesis lead? In another time and place, it may -- like other philosophies of uniqueness and disease that preceded it -- take us along a route that leads to the horrible gas chambers of a warped imagination.


  Category: Americas, Faith & Spirituality
  Topics: Judaism, Occupation, Racism
Views: 11088

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Older Comments:
H.A. FROM YATHRIB said:
Jews are good people.

It's the small number of ZIONISTS and the .. U.S. politicians who ally with the zionists for their political gain are making the Jewish people look bad all around the world...

Very sad.
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PETER FROM SOUTH AFRICA said:
Albert Einstein once remarked that the essential food of the Jews is victimhood (or words to that effect). As long as they can play the victim while in fact being the oppressor, they literally get away with murder.
Harry Truman wrote in his private diary that the Jew, when he has the upper hand, is savage, brutal and merciless. We see that in Palestine today. If Jews want to find a cause for Jew-hatred, they need only look at events in Palestine since Sharon came to power after having provoked the second intifada on 29/9/2000 when he desecrated the Haram al-Sharif.
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J. BROWER FROM U.S. said:
Excellent description of the current political climate in the U.S. The Zionist thought police are stripping away, piece by piece, the culture of free speech that was built over centuries of political strife and war in this country. They've used their VAST monetary resources to build an army of pro-Israel zealots who's sole purpose is to publicly rebuke any citizen who dares to criticize apartheid Israel. Professors are under attack. Politicians are muzzled or coerced into supporting the racist state. Activists are imprisoned and even killed.

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JUDY ANDREAS FROM USA said:
Hide behind what Israel is doing? Pleeeeeeze.
Nobody is HIDING. Israel, from its inception, has been a Rothschild Fifedom. The Zionists are no friend to the Jews. (read Lenni Brenner, Ralph Schoenman and Norman Finkelstein..for openers) Until the Jewish people catch on to the game....they will be duped by the Zionists. Unfortunately.....the game is being so deftly played that criticism becomes impossible.


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FRANK FROM UNITED STATES said:
Daniel Goldhagen is a scholar? Who says?
Yes, the lessons of the Holocaust have been forgotten by the victims primarily. This is because they became more concerned with museums and statistics than the origins of anti-Semitism, which was more rampant in Poland and Russia than Germany. That Russian anti-Semitism is growing rapidly at present should be no shock to any scholar, and that has nothing to do with Israel. If Goldhagen was a real Holocaust historian or "scholar", he would already know that.
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JODY FROM US said:
How come no-one ever talks about anti-GENTILISM? It is anti-GENTILISM that is the root cause of "anti-semitism". Just read the old-testament, and consider the terms Gentile, Goyim, etc. It is the inherant hatred of all NON-jews, a keystone of judaism, that is real problem. When are the jews going to renounce the Genocidal Xenophobia of the old testament?
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CARROLL FROM USA said:
Speaking as an American (and as white European American whose family has been here since the 1600's)..and being neither Jewish nor Muslim...and looking at the situtation as an uninvolved observer....I have to say that I agree with this article.
I have studied the mid east, the history of the Isr/Pal conflict and followed closely the events there since the 911 here in America.
Here in the US it seems to me that a certain element of the Israelis and some fanatics in the Jewish camp in the US are trying to stir up anti-semtism for their own political purposes.
I am sure there are some very small numbers of hard core anti-Jewish-semitics and there are some hard core anti-Arab-semitics also among the Jews.
But from what I see here, the current rantings about anti-semitism are overblown and are coming from groups who hope to use it to further the Israeli agenda of expanding and taking over resources in Palestine and other areas of the Mid East with US backing.
I think this effort to raise the specter of anti-semitism in order to gain support will eventually backfire.
Historically I think the Arabs got a bad deal from the British after WWII. Since then everyone, the UK,the US and the Arab States themselves have all fallen down on the job of reigning in Israel agression and setting up a Palestine state.
I also have to admit that our government has been the most guilty in allowing this to go on.
But to get back to the question...anti-semitism is being used I think because Israel is against the wall now and her supporters are using anti-semitism and every other tool to try and get as much as they can before they are forced to accept a Palestine state.
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ED HUNTER FROM USA said:
Typical Jewish supremacist garbage, nothing new here. What a total presstitute the author is to parrot Goldhagen like he has here, why is he allowed to publish crap like this piece on your site?

I often think the Jews were the first adopters of the strategy that says "the best defense is a good offense". To hear the professional liar Goldhagen tell it, so-called "anti-semitism" is not the legitimate and healthy reaction of good and honest people to bad behaviors and treachery by some Jews, rather, it is a genetic defect in all non-Jews throughout history. I ask you my friends, what is the more plausible explanation, and which doesn't ring true? Basic common sense and your understanding of Human Nature should be your guide.

As for the "lessons of the Holocaust"??? Read the book "the Holocaust Industry" by the brave Jew Norman Finkelstein and you'll quickly understand what those lessons really are.

Most good people in the world today are far more concerned about the 60 year old ongoing Jewish Holocaust against the Palestinian People and the devastating impact it is having on the entire world, then they are about an over-hyped 60 year old tragic sidelight to WWII. And with good reason do they feel this way: just look where the policies and behaviors of today's Master Race have brought us all, the very brink of WWIII.


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ABU UMAR FROM USA said:
i have a question, is not the arab people a semitic people like the jewish people. arabic is a semitic language?
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RAHIM AKBAR FROM JA[AN said:
Why should peace and truth loving people even care about what they the Zionist think? Truth was created with the world and it will be here as we all pass one by one. Semite are Africans and Asian linguistic roots, they are neither Africans nor Asians. They are just jonnie come lately trying to be what they are not. The chosen people of God are the people with high moral character. When God chose the Israelis as a yardstick in which morality will be measured, they failed. They have misunderstood the word of God, that they are the chosen people of God. Do you think God will chose killers, murders, bullies, liars and cheaters to represent him??? God has now chosen the people who were considered nothing slaves and has putting his words and works in them as a yardstick in which morality will be measured now in this present time.
A mother or a father will always chose from among the children the most obedient one to take charge of affairs when they leave home. That does not mean the father or mother don't love the rest of the children, he just want the rest of the children to be obedient and Wright and he is using one of the children as an example for the rest of the children. None of us as a people are so sacread that we can not be critisize. A father or a mother will buy a bike to the obedient child and will not buy for the disobedient one and when the disobedient one ask the brother to ride on the bike, the obedient will tell his brother Mom says your actions are decietfull, lost, tyranny, wickecd and dissobedient. untill you change from that behavior you will never get a bike like this one.
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NANCY FROM USA said:
We Americans may be trying our best to purge anti-Semitism but at the same time are also doing our best to promote an anti-Muslim & anti-Islam agenda. I think to every action there is an equal reaction, if not more and the following article well reflects that. I wonder if we still think God is on our side?

http://www.onlinejournal.com/Special_Reports/040105Rockwell/040105rockwell.html
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H.A. FROM YATHRIB said:
May God bless the Jewish people...
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L ALAHEM FROM USA said:
Asalaam alikum,

Very interesting. If I criticize Israel, then I am an anti-semite. Very interesting indeed. So criticizing me, the muslim, makes you a patriot?

Let's cut the double standards and the double talk. Walk the walk if you're gonna talk the talk. Until Israel has to account for the blatant disregard of International Law, written in response to the Holocaust and atrocities, then they have no room whatsoever to talk.

To the builders of that hateful wall: How dare you put that wall up, after Wausau who on earth should know better? You have become the storm trooper! Shame on you, may those who lost there lives in the gas chambers never cease to convict you for your sin against your neighbor!
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MOMINAH said:
muslims should have their own word, same as the jews have their own word when people discriminate against them. [anti-semitism]
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A RATIONAL BEING FROM USA said:
Jews have always used the word "Anti-Semitism" as an excuse for being accepted amongst the people under whom they reside. They held up the Holocaust card to gain the sympathy of the western world. They took away the lands from the Palestinians and have killed thousands of them over the last few decades. Everyone knows that they are a dangerous people, as can be judged from their history. Some of them are fighting this generalization, again by attempting to use the Holocaust in their favor, but that is an even that happened half a century ago. They now have a nation of their own and one of the strongest military in the world. Yet, the reason why people despise them so much is because they are two faced. One one side, they talk about peace to the rest of the world and on the other side, they have occupied the Palestinian people for the longest time. That is only one reason why "Anti-Semitism" is so common. Instead of blaming people for being Anti-Semitic and racist, they should look at themselves and ponder why it is that so many people dislike them. I personally do not dislike or hate Jewish people, but at the same time, I do not have any sympathy for them, untill they discontinue their hostile actions towards the Muslims. They seem to blame all their problems on the Arabs, and that's probably one of the many reasons why the Arabs supposedly passed on the Anti-Semitism "back to Europe" as the author claims.
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AMAL FROM USA said:
I think that the jewish people should realize that just because they were involved in a deadly act of genocide doesnt mean that they are immune from hatred and discrimination among many people in this world. personally I think that they are way behind their common status of being the chosen people, the peacemakers and all of these characteristics that people of God are supposed to have.
for example, Jews had and have been participating in Slavery of African Americans As well as Arabs for centuries, they have killed people, raped women, and demonized nations, and above all they have participated in taking away spiritual, ethical, and cultural values and have made nations without even the slightest bit of wonder about who their people are and where they come from. I am not anti-semitic, because I love people who worship one God and one God only. But I am anti-terrorist. and I believe very much that if you are committing these types of acts against not only muslims but all people of many different nations than you are a terrorist and as with any terrorist jewish or not they must be stopped.
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SUSANA FROM CANADA said:
http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/ is a good source. Every time Isreal is facing criticisms abroad, the anti-semitism card is played.
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