Anti-Zionism is bigotry

Melanie Phillips nails it when she calls out anti-Zionism for what it is – bigotry. Ms. Phillips is never backwards in coming forwards in pointing out the double standards relating to Israel, but this latest article of hers is outstanding.

… I have been brooding over the fact that Zionism has become a dirty word in Britain and the west.

For many in these societies, Zionism has now become equated with racism. This group libel, once regarded with revulsion by decent people when the Soviet-Arab axis got the UN to endorse it in 1975, has now become the prism through which the BBC, academia, the artistic and theatrical world and much of the rest of the cultural establishment now frame all references to Israel.

This helps explain the attempted boycott of the Israeli theatre company Habima, playing Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice at London’s Globe theatre this evening in conditions of the tightest security (apparently the expected interruptions by bigots have so far been relatively minor). The profound malice and ignorance behind such reflexive demonisation of Israel are rendered all the more hallucinatory by the sanctimonious and unchallenged assumption of the moral high ground which these idiots believe they occupy.

This is as grotesque as it is terrifying. Zionism is no more nor less than the self-determination of the Jewish people – as a people, and not just as adherents of the Jewish religion. Jews are in fact the only people – as a people — for whom Israel (ancient Judea and Samaria) was ever their national homeland. Those who deny Zionism thus deny Jewish peoplehood and the fundamental right of Jews to live as a people in their own ancestral homeland, Israel.

[...]

Bad enough that for so many people in Britain and the west, Israel has been successfully demonised as a pariah state on the basis of a unique systematic campaign of falsehoods, distortions and libels about its history and behaviour, untruths which have nevertheless become the unchallenged basis for public discussion.

But far worse even than this is the assumption underlying this lazy defamation, that Zionism is a creed that is itself a particularly aggressive kind of racism or colonialism. This vicious prejudice has turned truth, reason and decency inside out. The right of the Jews to their own historic national homeland has been recast, entirely falsely, as a usurpation of the ‘right’ to that land of ‘Palestinians’ – who never actually existed as a discrete people in the first place. Those Jews who are Zionists now find themselves as a result cast as racists and social pariahs – merely for asserting the right of the Jewish people to self-determination in their own historic homeland.

Those who are driven by a vicious and bigoted hatred have thus been allowed to cast the victims of their hatred as themselves hateful people. Zionist Jews are thus defamed and victimised many times over…

[...]

This is a truly chilling situation, reminiscent of the mass brainwashing and hijacking of thought that took place in the Soviet Union

[...]

But just as in the former Soviet Union, there are plenty of decent, rational people who do understand very well what is happening here, and its broader and lethal implications for the safety of the entire western world.

Read the whole thing, I urge you, and spread the word.

This entry was posted in Boycotts and BDS, Judaism and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

48 Responses to Anti-Zionism is bigotry

  1. annediamond1 says:

    it is more worrying what is happening in Europe with the football matches comes a great deal of antisemitism, this is what Jews have to bear along with those who are not white, bullied and attacked….. please realise that as world changes. It does not change the challenges that we have to face in our schools and Universities.

    The television pictures really worried a lot of Jewish famillies here in the UK….

    • anneinpt says:

      You’re quite right about the antisemitism in Europe in football matches and the like, but I would classify those as the “regular” antisemitism, which is usually identified and condemned as such even by liberal and progressive circles. It is anti-Zionism, as opposed to the classic antisemitism, which Melanie Phillips is addressing in her article, and which she shows to be as bad as the old fashioned type of antisemitism, although it is much harder to persuade progressive circles that it’s the same bigoted trope.

  2. Sam Kriss says:

    all this nonsense about ancestral homelands should be regarded as the repulsive 19th-century volkish nationalism that it is. the only people who spew out similar discredited ideological atavisms are chauvinist serbs and other such unsavoury types. zionism is a colonial movement, and as such it is intrinsically racist.

    • anneinpt says:

      Your comment simply goes to prove what Melanie Phillips said.

      Do you have the same negative feelings about Palestinian nationalism? Or Pan-Arab nationalism? Or is it only Zionism that is colonial and racist in your eyes?

      Why are Americans entitled to a country, why can the English live in England and the French in France, but the Jews cannot live in Israel? You are denying the Jews their right to self-determination as a nation and therefore you are the one who is racist.

      As for a colonial enterprise, that is really too funny. Since when do colonialists give up on territory (see: Lebanon, Gaza, north Samaria).

      You are spouting bigotry on auto-pilot.

      • Sam Kriss says:

        palestinian nationalism isn’t based on some anachronistic apocrypha about an ‘ancestral homeland’ but on the quite reasonable complaint that the palestinians have been dispossessed of their land and subjected to occupation and blockade. given that palestinians are the indigenous inhabitants of the country, no, i don’t consider palestinian nationalism to be colonialist. what a question.

        i don’t think i ever said that jews cannot live in israel. if you’re going to accuse me of spouting bigotry on autopilot it’s probably best that you then make sure you’re responding to the points i’ve actually made rather than regurgitating hasbara catchphrases.

        colonial regimes have withdrawn from their colonies since ancient greece. early zionists seeking british approval to settle in palestine explicitly connected their project with that of colonialism. to be honest the idea that zionism is anything other than colonialism is pretty absurd.

        and as for the whole ‘no YOU’RE the racist’ thing… we’re both london jews here, i think you can give that a rest

        • anneinpt says:

          palestinian nationalism isn’t based on some anachronistic apocrypha about an ‘ancestral homeland’ but on the quite reasonable complaint that the palestinians have been dispossessed of their land and subjected to occupation and blockade. given that palestinians are the indigenous inhabitants of the country, no, i don’t consider palestinian nationalism to be colonialist. what a question.

          So few words, so many lies, distortions and reversal of chronology.

          The Palestinians were never the indigenous inhabitants of the country. What nonsense! Read Mark Twain’s account of his travels through Israel (called Palestine then) and see how many – or how few – inhabitants there were. Even then, the majority were Jewish. Regional Arabs, who were never called Palestinians, moved into Israel when the Jews began to arrive and make the desert bloom. With the Jews’ arrival, the economy prospered, and local Arabs, sensibly enough, wanted to take advantage of the higher standard of living.

          The only people called Palestinians until 1964, when the PLO was established, were Israeli-born Jews. There was no Arab-ruled country called Palestine. It was part of the Ottoman Empire, and then ruled under the British Mandate – as a homeland for the Jews, not the Palestinians. There was no Palestinian language. It was Arabic, the same as their brothers throughout the Middle East. There was no Palestinian currency. There was no Palestinian capital – not even Jerusalem. It was only demanded as their capital after the Israelis recaptured it in 1967. There is no mention of Jerusalem in the Koran whereas it is mentioned over 600 times in the Tanach.

          You consider Jewish claims to Israel “anachronistic apocrypha” yet you swallow the Palestinian “indigenous claim” whole. You are either blind, stupid or bigoted. You tell me.

          i don’t think i ever said that jews cannot live in israel. if you’re going to accuse me of spouting bigotry on autopilot it’s probably best that you then make sure you’re responding to the points i’ve actually made rather than regurgitating hasbara catchphrases.

          I did not accuse you of saying that. I asked why you deny the Jews their right to a homeland in Israel when you do not deny that right to any other nation. Although as an avowed Marxist, you probably do deny that right. In which case there’s no point in debating this with you. We’re on different planets.

          colonial regimes have withdrawn from their colonies since ancient greece. early zionists seeking british approval to settle in palestine explicitly connected their project with that of colonialism. to be honest the idea that zionism is anything other than colonialism is pretty absurd.

          So let the Arabian colonialists withdraw from their colonies. Tell Syria to withdraw from Lebanon, Iran to withdraw its proxies from Lebanon and Gaza, tell the Saudis to leave Kuwait alone, and tell Egypt to leave Sinai to the Bedouin. The Arabs have 22 countries to call their own, the Jews have one.

          Early Zionists did not connect their project with colonialism! What a load of utter tripe! Zionism is simply the “executive branch”, the practical expression, of the Jewish political and national aspiration for a homeland. They never wanted to rule over another nation or to expand into any other territory. You really must get your nose out of you Marxist library and take a look at some real history books.

          and as for the whole ‘no YOU’RE the racist’ thing… we’re both london jews here, i think you can give that a rest

          I’m not a London Jew thank G-d. I left London long ago and am jolly glad I did seeing what is happening in the UK today. I am an Israeli Jew and have been for well over 30 years. As for being a racist, what has being a Jew, from London or anywhere else, got to do with it? If you deny the Jews what you allow the Arabs, then you are a racist.

          • Sam Kriss says:

            congratulations of having read ‘from time immemorial.’ i hope you realise its scholarship has been thoroughly discredited. i’m well aware that an independent nation of palestine has not existed since the 20th century. so what? ethnicity is not objective. a palestinian nation exists now, so it doesn’t matter how long it has existed. the point of the matter is that there are palestinians in refugee camps in the west bank, gaza, jordan, lebanon and elsewhere who still have the keys to the houses that their families owned before the ethnic cleansing of 1948′s nakba. for you, a colonial transplant from the uk, to seek to deny them what they are owed is repulsive.

            jerusalem is, in fact, mentioned in the qur’an, but even if it weren’t, that fact would be irrelevant. syria withdrew from lebanon a while back, syria is an ally of iran, and the bedouins of the sinai are not facing colonia enroachment on their territory. if an arab state were to practice the same level of discrimination as israel, i would condemn them. i condemn jordan for its institutional racism against palestinians, for instance. the difference is that pro-jordanism is not hegemonic and untouchable in my community, my government, or in the media.

            • cba says:

              ” if an arab state were to practice the same level of discrimination as israel, i would condemn them. ”

              Hahahahahahaha!

              ” i condemn jordan for its institutional racism against palestinians, for instance”
              That’s a start. What about Lebanon? Iraq? Egypt? Saudi Arabia?

              Or, come to that, the Palestinian Authority–which has said it will not give citizenship to Palestinians who came from (or are the descendents of those who came from) areas that are now part of Israel?

            • cba says:

              “jerusalem is, in fact, mentioned in the qur’an”
              There is a reference to “the farthest mosque” (Masjid al-Aqsa), where Mohammed landed and prayed on his Night Journey, and by tradition this is accepted as being Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa mosque that stands on the Temple Mount. Jerusalem is not mentioned by name, and as a matter of historical fact* the Al-Aqsa mosque wasn’t built until long after Mohammed had gone to the Great Mosque in the Sky.
              * My apologies for using the word “fact”–I know that’s just another filthy bourgeois concept.

            • anneinpt says:

              I’ve never read From Time Immemorial. Stop your sneering and your condescension. Amazingly enough, there are educated people who form opinions on their own, from seeing reality and living in the place, rather than from propaganda and Marxist ideology.

              The Palestinians in the refugee camps could have been resettled by their Arab brothers with their billions of petro-dollars, but have deliberately been kept in misery and poverty in order to become a weapon against Israel. Only the weapon has backfired hasn’t it?

              They’ve got their keys? Too bad, The locks have been changed. If those keys ever opened the door to a real house that is.

              Ethnic cleansing in 1948? Hah! What nonsense! There was a population exchange of about 400,000 Arabs for 800,000 Jews. The Jews aren’t in refugee camps are they? And Israel managed that with no outside help besides from fellow Jews. In fact the Jews were hindered by the UN, the Arabs and the British, and yet Israel prevailed. The Arabs left their “beloved” brothers to rot. Serves them right. The Arabs who stayed in Israel are now Israeli citizens with full civil rights. Unlike how they are treated in their own Arab countries.

              Jerusalem is NOT mentioned in the Koran. Bring me the Sura, Hadith, and page number to show me.

              Arab countries are so much more discriminatory than Israel that your statement is breathtaking in its bigotry. Jews cannot set foot in Saudi Arabia. Any Arab selling land to a Jew anywhere in the Middle East gets an automatic death sentence. Palestinians are not allowed to own property in Jordan. Need I go on? Obviously I do for an ignoramus like you, but I won’t becuase I’ve got a life.

              “pro-jordanism is not hegemonic and untouchable in my community, my government, or in the media.

              So THAT’s your problem with Israel! It is an embarrassment to you. Well, go and hide in shame. We will live very happily without your support.
              You’ve never been to Israel, I’m betting.

              • cba says:

                “Ethnic cleansing in 1948? Hah! What nonsense!”
                Far be it from me to contradict you, but in fact there WAS ethnic cleansing–the Etzion Bloc, for a start.

                And here’s the rule by which sam kriss and his buddies live: Once Jews have been ethnically cleansed from an area (for example, the Etzion Bloc), then even if they subsequently aquire that area in a defensive war, THEY ARE REQUIRED BY “INTERNATIONAL LAW” TO STAY ETHNICALLY CLEANSED! No going back to the houses they and their parents and grandparents built. No “old keys” for them! No sirree! They have to stay in Tel Aviv. Or send different bits of themselves to Yemen/Germany/Iraq/Jerusalem. But only the “unoccupied” parts of Jerusalem–we can’t have any Jews thinking they can live in the Jewish Quarter!

              • Sam Kriss says:

                as it happens i was born in israel. and on the newest post on my blog, i recount some experiences from being in the country. i’m not going to respond to the rest of your post because i’m drunk and tired, but i’ll just say that it’s sickening to see the relative of holocaust survivors deny ethnic cleansing.

                • cba says:

                  “i’m drunk and tired”
                  Finally! NOW I understand why sam kriss is posting the crap he is. Being drunk is at least SOME excuse.

                  “it’s sickening to see the relative of holocaust survivors deny ethnic cleansing”
                  Much as it pains me, Anne, I have to agree–I’m rather shocked you forgot about the Etzion Bloc.

            • anneinpt says:

              I’m a “a colonial transplant from the uk,”?! How dare you! Who am I colonising? Where’s my colony? Who have I displaced? Your chutzpah is outrageous! I should sue you for slander.

              Are you a colonolialist for having moved to the US? If not, why am I a colonialist for having moved to Israel?

              Double standards, here we come.

              • cba says:

                “Double standards, here we come”
                In fairness, “double standards” is exactly where we started.

              • Sam Kriss says:

                last time i checked, the united states wasn’t continuing to actively and violently oppress the native americans. of course, i still have some issued with us government policy, but as you so perceptively noted, i’m an internationalist.

                • cba says:

                  “last time i checked, the united states wasn’t continuing to actively and violently oppress the native americans”
                  Anne, I do believe our noble and moral internationalist is recommending that Israel kill off most of its Arab citizens and then insist the rest live on reservations (God forbid). Maybe the next thing he’ll suggest is letting the survivors run casinos.

                  Interestingly, Canada still has major problems with ITS First Nations, including lots of outstanding land claims. On most northern reservations, unemployment is something like 50%, and there’s a horrifying degree of substance abuse and suicide (and every other kind of abuse). I’m sure the Zionists forced them to do it.

        • cba says:

          “colonial regimes have withdrawn from their colonies since ancient greece”

          OK, Sam, maybe you could explain to me–if Jews were to withdraw from their “colony” in Israel, to where would they “return”? What is the Jewish colonial power from which they set forth to colonize Israel?

          • Sam Kriss says:

            i’m not proposing the complete depopulation of the jewish colony of israel. i’m saying the intrinsic racism which attends the idea of a jewish state is repulsive and untenable. an equitable binational solution is perfectly feasible; an equitable two-state solution isn’t.

            • cba says:

              You didn’t answer my question. I’ll rephrase it:
              If (some of) the “colonialists” were to withdraw from the “colony” and go “home”–where would “home” be?

              • Sam Kriss says:

                if we’re talking about the the palestinian territories, then tel aviv. if we’re talking about israel proper, then wherever. the united states. britain. germany. australia. wherever their parents or grandparents came from. but it’s an academic question. even the absurd and grandiloquent hamas charter recognises the right of israeli jews to remain.

                • cba says:

                  “even the absurd and grandiloquent hamas charter recognises the right of israeli jews to remain”
                  Please quote chapter and verse.

                  “if we’re talking about the the palestinian territories, then tel aviv”
                  No other part of Israel? Only Tel Aviv? Fascinating…

                  “if we’re talking about israel proper, then wherever. the united states. britain. germany. australia. wherever their parents or grandparents came from”
                  I know someone whose grandparents are from Germany and Yemen (on one side), and Iraq and as-far-back-as-can-be-traced Jerusalem (on the other). Do they get to pick? What about the ones who came from Morocco or Tunisia? We already know (from that case earlier in the year) that Libya has no intention of letting any Jews back in–not even to clean up a synagogue at his own expense.

                  (Anne, it appears that Sam Kriss considers capital letters to be a bourgeois concept with which he will not sully his keyboard. Sorry, I meant “sam kriss” of course… )

                  • Sam Kriss says:

                    chapter and verse? this isn’t the bible mate. article thirty-one.

                  • cba says:

                    Ooo, looky! Little furry creature has slept off his bender.
                    Here’s the Hamas Charter in all its glory (English translation, of course) http://www.thejerusalemfund.org/www.thejerusalemfund.org/carryover/documents/charter.html. And sure enough, Article Thirty-One includes the following:
                    “…it is possible for the members of the three religions: Islam, Christianity and Judaism to coexist in safety and security.”
                    That sentence begins “Under the shadow of Islam” and is followed by “The members of other religions must desist from struggling against Islam over sovereignty in this region.”
                    So, as we have seen in many other places, Christians and Jews can live as long as they accept their second-class status.

                    I hope other interested readers will read the charter in its entirety. I draw their attention to the following in particular:
                    * The end of Article Seven
                    * The start of Article Twelve (might be a tad upsetting to sam kriss, the anti-nationalist–unless vicious, intolerant Islamic nationalism is an exception to his “nationalism is bad” rule)
                    * Pretty much the whole of Article Thirteen
                    * Article Twenty, which refers to “The Nazism of the Jews” (note: NOT “the Zionists” but “the Jews”)
                    * The end of Article Twenty-Eight: “Israel, by virtue of its being Jewish and of having a Jewish population, defies Islam and the Muslims. “Let the eyes of the cowards not fall asleep.” ”

                    Plus there’s the standard heapin’ helpin’ of conspiracy theories and other lunacy.

                    Makes ya feel all warm and fuzzy about how Jews would be treated in a Hamas-ruled country, doesn’t it?

                • anneinpt says:

                  What, all the Israelis have to retreat to Tel Aviv? You in your generosity are going to grant us one little city? Oh sire, you are so generous and bountiful!

                  /sarc.

                  Where is Israel “proper”? Who has ever recognized any of Israel’s borders? What is proper about Israel in the 1949 armistice lines? Why does 19 years of Arab conquest of Judea and Samaria make them the Palestinian homeland, denying thousands of prior years of Jewish sovereignty?

                  • Sam Kriss says:

                    thousands of years of jewish sovereignty? i take it then that the ottoman and arab empires were puppets of some nefarious jewish cabal? because that’s the only way that statement would make any sense whatsoever.

                    as i think i pointed out in my first comment, this perverse obsession with national homelands is a strictly zionist monomania. it’s not important whose historical pedigree has more mould on it. what matters is that palestinians are currently facing a system of institutionalised repression and delegitimisation.

                  • anneinpt says:

                    That’s so funny it almost makes me laugh. “Perverse nationalism is purely Zionist monomania”? You are definitely nuts. You’ve never heard of the pan-Arab nationalist movement? The Palestinian nationalist movement? The French are not nationalist? The Americans or the British or…? Oh, sorry, they’re not Jews so that’s OK then.

                    I’m not having any more of your nonsense on my blog. Go and play on your own blog and pollute someone else’s space.

                • anneinpt says:

                  You said above “Article 31″. Nonsense. You are reading what you want to see and not what’s there.

                  Here’s what Article 31 of the Hamas charter says:

                  Under the shadow of Islam it is possible for the members of the three religions: Islam, Christianity and Judaism to coexist in safety and security. Safety and security can only prevail under the shadow of Islam, and recent and ancient history is the best witness to that effect. The members of other religions must desist from struggling against Islam over sovereignty in this region.

                  A few sentences along they call Zionism Nazism:

                  The Nazi Zionist practices against our people will not last the lifetime of their invasion, for “states built upon oppression last only one hour, states based upon justice will last until the hour of Resurrection

                  So yeah, sure, Hamas will allow Israeli Jews to remain. No sovereignty mind. Only under the shadow of Islam. And no Zionists please, we’re Nazis.

                  You are either an outright bigot, a total ignoramus, or a 10 year old child with a grave problem of reading comprehension who needs remedial teaching.

            • anneinpt says:

              The only intrinsic racism is that which attends those who deny the Jewish people the right to a homeland, alone amongst all the nations of the world.

              Equitable binational solution – hah! No one but Marxists like you propose such a thing. Even the Palestinians don’t. They want a one-state solution – all of Israel plus all of the Arab countries – and Jews have no place in any of them.

              Look in the mirror. You are a racist bigot.

      • cba says:

        Anne, you have to give sam kriss a break–he doesn’t like ANY nationalism, certainly not one based on religion. He’s against India and Pakistan for the same reason, and absolutely HATES Saudia Arabia (Christians cannot even bring a Bible into the country, or hold private prayer services in their own homes) and all the other Muslim countries. As for Britain, whose head of state is also head of the Church, and whose flag consists of three superimposed crosses… that’s just beyond the pale. He wants them all to stop existing.

        But first of all Israel has to stop being a country whose statutory holidays are Jewish holidays and whose weekend is the Jewish weekend and whose language is Hebrew and where Jews are the majority. That’s THE MOST IMPORTANT THING!!! In the end, EVERYONE has to dismantle their own countries, but Israel has to go first. Because it’s only fair, after all, since Jews have so many other countries. Or something…

        • anneinpt says:

          You nailed it cba.

          There’s no point in continuing with these circular arguments. He’s a Marxist troll, but I admit he’s given my keyboard good exercise. Unlike his shift and caps lock key. :-)

  3. Roxymuzak says:

    I was always of the opinion that Zionism is just a sexy word for nationalism, namely Jewish nationalism. Likewise, are we also opposed to American “Zionism”, Leprechaun “Zionism” – there’s lot of them over here insisting on the right to self-determination, ahem, -
    or for that matter Palestinian “Zionism”.

    • anneinpt says:

      LOL! When you define it like that then all becomes clear.

      • Roxymuzak says:

        Your spot on with the view that anti-Zionism is really just anti-Israel dressed up in a cloak of respectability. Meantime, they say that Zionism is a God send for anti-Semites. These days they don’t frog march anymore, do them there darn anti-Zionists, but they still search in vain for that final solution. Thankfully, like Bono, they still haven’t found what they’re looking for. However, if the rats do pour fourth to try and infest a happy city (Albert Camus) for the second in a 100 years and try to drag the Jews to the gates of Hell again, this time out there will be an IDF reception committee waiting to greet them in the rematch.

        • anneinpt says:

          Yes, exactly. I think the anti-Zionists, or the modern antisemites, simply can’t get their heads around the fact that today the Jews have power, at least in their own country. This negates 2,000 years of persecution and they have a hard time accepting that.

          They much prefer the Jews as victims. Hence even the worst anti-Zionists will still decry the Holocaust (unless they deny it of course).

  4. tzfonit rechoka says:

    I don’t hnow why you even bothered answering Sam the Troll.
    Totally useless, & just gets your blood pressure sky high.
    There’s no talking, or convincing, a Marxist fanat….

    • anneinpt says:

      Now she tells me… :-)

      Seriously, I know I’m not going to convince him but I felt it was important to answer him for the sake of “passing traffic” – i.e. other readers who see his comment should see a coherent answer from us.

Add your comment here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s