Washington Post’s racism map omits Israel

Israel/Palestine
on 73 Comments
racism map3
(Image: Washington Post)

The Washington Post has published “A fascinating map of the world’s most and least racially tolerant countries,” and it lives up to its billing, it’s fascinating. Arab and Muslim countries are revealed to be intolerant, and Israel is out of the picture!

The Washington Post’s findings are based on an academic study of 65 countries. Here’s the Post graphic illustrating national responses to the following issue:

“Share that answered, ‘People of another race’ when asked to pick from groups of people they would not want as a neighbor.”

The United States scores under 5 percent. Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Algeria, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Balkans, France and Turkey all score in the 20s and 30s.

There is ample evidence that Israelis would register on this scale. Nearly half of Israeli Jews oppose having Arab neighbors, according to an Israeli news site.

But Israel is not counted in this map. Nor is Palestine, for that matter. Our guide to racism at the Washington Post, Max Fisher writes:

Here’s what the data show:

• Anglo and Latin countries most tolerant. People in the survey were most likely to embrace a racially diverse neighbor in the United Kingdom and its Anglo former colonies (the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand) and in Latin America…

• The Middle East not so tolerant. Immigration is also a big issue in this region, particularly in Egypt and Saudi Arabia, which often absorb economic migrants from poorer neighbors.

The map is based on a Swedish study about whether economic freedom makes societies more tolerant. And though Fisher raises an eyebrow over the fact that Pakistan scored well on tolerance, he has not a word to say about Israel.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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73 Responses

  1. Obsidian
    May 16, 2013, 12:54 pm

    Maybe Israel was left out because it is a tiny country.

    For some people, though, little Israel casts a giant, terrifying shadow.

    • eljay
      May 16, 2013, 2:45 pm

      >> Maybe Israel was left out because it is a tiny country.

      The oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist “Jewish State” of (Greater) Israel may be physically tiny, but it contains an astonishing amount of Zio-supremacist injustice, immorality, hatred and supremacism.

    • Bumblebye
      May 16, 2013, 3:19 pm

      Obdurate
      If you look at the map with your magnifying glass, you’ll be able to see a few specks of countries which have been included in the survey. Singapore is smaller than Israel, is it not? So is Albania, which also appears to be there.

    • Ecru
      May 16, 2013, 3:30 pm

      Yes of course that’s it. So why did it include Andorra?

    • marc b.
      May 16, 2013, 5:36 pm

      new Zealand is on the map, too. it has a smaller population than Israel. or were you referring to ‘tiny’ as in not many square miles. either way, you’re wrong. again. but congratulations on posting the first comment.

    • irmep
      May 16, 2013, 7:41 pm

      This is really interesting. If, for example, the US and Israel results were radically different, it would provide a quantitative verification of the Mearsheimer/Walt thesis that the US and Israel don’t really share common values.

      The WAPO certainly isn’t the first place one would look for that sort of data point. But perhaps the reason they didn’t publish Israel data, is that the study did not include Israel.

      link to ifn.se

      So the question becomes, why wasn’t Israel data included? The data used in the cited study appears to come from the World Values Survey Association.

      link to worldvaluessurvey.org

      Unhappily, simple data links to “Country 54″ World Values data appear to be broken.

      link to worldvaluessurvey.org

      But if a statistically-minded Mondoweisser with SAS or SPSS wants to solve this mystery, and be more informative that the Post (easy) and study authors (not so easy), some data through 2005 on Israel appears to be available at:

      link to wvsevsdb.com

      It is 43 MB of data. (SPSS)

      As Tim Berners Lee says, open data can change the world…(but only if you can analyze it!)

      • German Lefty
        May 17, 2013, 5:45 am

        @ irmep
        Follow the link:
        link to wvsevsdb.com
        Click on “Online Data Analysis”, “Begin Analysis”, and “Four-wave Aggregate of the Values Studies”.
        Choose “Israel 2001″ and/or any other box. Then click on “Confirm selection”.
        For the field “Which variables should be shown”, you need to choose either “Variables having data for ALL samples” or “Variables having data for ANY sample”.
        Then, if you click on a question, you see the text of this question. To find out how the people answered this question, you need to click on “Cross-tabs”.
        Apparently, not all questions were asked in Israel. For the question about the neighbours, there are no Israeli data available.

      • German Lefty
        May 17, 2013, 5:58 am

        Results from 1999:
        Question: “On this list are various groups of people. Could you please sort out any that you would not like to have as neighbors?”
        5.5 % of Germans chose “people of a different race”. (US citizens: 8.0 %)
        6.3 % of Germans chose “Jews”. (US citizens: 9.1 %)
        12.4 % of Germans chose “Muslims”. (US citizens: 10.7 %)
        12.9 % of Germans chose “homosexuals”. (US citizens: 23.3 %)
        32.0 % of Germans chose “Gypsies”. (no data)
        74.8 % of Germans chose “right-wing extremists”. (no data)

  2. Justpassingby
    May 16, 2013, 1:09 pm

    Races?! There is the Human race. Nothing else.

    Quite funny that Iran is light-red, a state with multiple ethnicities and have embraced millions of iraqi and afghan refugees from western wars far more tolerant obviously than Israel that is a state based for jews. But sure Israel is apparently more tolerant…right.

  3. IL1948
    May 16, 2013, 1:21 pm

    Israel is not listed because it is not a racist nation. It is, in fact, the most tolerant nation in the region. Muslims living in Israel enjoy more freedom than those living in most Arab countries.

    Palestine is not listed because it doesn’t exist outside the imagination of self hating pseudo intellectuals like yourself.

    • James Canning
      May 16, 2013, 2:36 pm

      IL – - The fact a person is a “Muslim” does not mean that person is of a different race from a Christian. Or a Jew.

    • Dutch
      May 16, 2013, 2:40 pm

      @ IL1948
      “It is, in fact, the most tolerant nation in the region.” [etc.]

      I have a suggestion for you, Ilyushin. Go to one of the settlements – say Maale Adumin –, look up a couple of white guys with beards, and tell them this joke. I’m sure they’re gonna love you. As in ‘fascists among each other’.

    • Tzombo
      May 16, 2013, 2:49 pm

      Lol. In Israel they would have to change the map to show over 60%…

    • W.Jones
      May 16, 2013, 2:52 pm

      Israel is not listed because it is not a racist nation.
      To undergo the study, you would need participants. Perhaps the potential participants are not interested in answering questions about this topic?

      Anyway, why are there whole communities there that exclude people from other ethnicities in joining their community?

      The Washington Post, which publicized the map itself above, has found it worthy enough to discuss Israeli racism.

      Allegations of racism and questions about a town’s character
      link to washingtonpost.com

      “area rabbis issued a religious ruling several months ago forbidding residents to rent apartments to Israeli Arab students from the local community college.”

    • eljay
      May 16, 2013, 2:53 pm

      >> Israel is … the most tolerant nation in the region.

      “Israel: We may not be as good as the best but, hey, at least we’re not as bad as the worst!” (c)

    • tree
      May 16, 2013, 3:09 pm

      Israel is not listed because it is not a racist nation.

      The rankings were listed according to what percentage of people would not want to live next to someone of another race. According to this Ynet article citing the Israel Democracy Institute (linked in Phil’s post),

      Almost half of Israeli Jews – 46% – wouldn’t want to have Arabs as neighbors, a survey conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute indicated Tuesday.

      Meanwhile, 39% of the participants said they would not want to live near migrant workers and mental patients in rehabilitation, while 23% said that the ultra-Orthodox would make the most difficult neighbors. A quarter of the participants consider gay neighbors the least desirable.

      Israel would be a bright red on that map if it was included in the survey.

      And on the same page as the above article there was a link to this:

      The State Prosecutor’s Office ordered police on Sunday to investigate the distribution of fliers against Safed’s mayor and the city’s Arabs.

      The fliers took aim at Mayor Ilan Shohat because, they say, his support of the establishment of a medical school in the city will attract secular students.

      Mayor Shohat wants to “found a refugee camp and a shelter for sadistic, deranged Arabs” in the city, the fliers say.

      If found, distributors of the fliers are expected to be charged with incitement to racism and insulting a public figure.

      Meanwhile, an indictment was filed with the Nazareth Magistrates’ Court against a 17-year old boy who allegedly called out “Death to Arabs” and “Stinky Muslims” during a protest held two weeks ago in the city, after rabbis called on its residents not to rent apartments to Arabs.

      The indictment charges the teen with incitement to racism, rioting, and destruction of property, saying he threw stones at apartments being rented by Arab students. The prosecution has also called for a restraining order keeping the teen out of Safed until the termination of legal proceedings against him.

      Racism is rampant in Israel.

      • seafoid
        May 16, 2013, 4:25 pm

        Israel is so tolerant that they don’t even use the word “Palestinian” in surveys. FFS.

    • Justpassingby
      May 16, 2013, 3:35 pm

      Why is that you lie?
      A state based on a current ethnic cleansing in modern times is “tolerant”?!
      Thats says about you.

    • pjdude
      May 16, 2013, 4:03 pm

      More lies from morally challenged Zionist bigots. Israel is the least tolerant of states( not nation). And Palestine is a country just because thugs like you don’t recognize the state you zionists conquered doesn’t mean it’s fake

    • Woody Tanaka
      May 16, 2013, 5:38 pm

      LOL. The Jews in Occupied Palestine are among the most bigoted people in the world. Typical zios were the soccer fans who protested a goal by their own team because the scorer was a Muslim from Chechnya. Bigots and ingrates to boot.

    • marc b.
      May 16, 2013, 6:12 pm

      It is, in fact, the most . . .

      another case of superlative delusional psychosis. Israel can’t be mentioned without attaching a superlative to its description. I seem to remember a 3 stooges short with this theme. whenever curly saw a mouse, he went spastic, flailing his arms and involuntarily shouting superlatives about the state Israel. (‘the most … the least … the most …’) the only cure was to be force fed cheese. ‘moe! larry! the cheese!’ that was a great bit.

    • Shingo
      May 16, 2013, 6:41 pm

      Israel is not listed because it is not a racist nation.

      Obviously you have never been to Israel and know nothing about it.

      “We are racist. Israel is a very racist society. I know what olim have gone through over the past 20 years. Our nation does not know how to receive new immigrants,” Landver says in a wide-ranging interview ahead of next week’s Ashdod Conference on Immigration and Absorption. The main topics to be discussed during the event will be “Racism in Israeli Society,” “The Immigrant Youth Crisis” and “Absorption Economics – Government Policies Versus Implementation.”

      link to jpost.com

      Israel is the most racist state in the industrialized world. It actually institutionalizes racism.

      A night of apartheidA succession of speakers at a three-hour conference in Jerusalem broadly agree that the ‘A word’ describes the status quo; the one dissenting panelist gets seven minutes
      link to timesofisrael.com

      South Africa is already here
      The government is trying to build a protected autonomy for the Jewish majority and a stunted autonomy for the Arab minority.

      link to haaretz.com

    • Patrick
      May 16, 2013, 8:19 pm

      “Muslims living in Israel enjoy more freedom than those living in most Arab countries.”

      Ah, so then they have the same rights and freedoms as Jews do in Israel? Does everyone in Israel have the same rights and freedoms?

      How about in the Occupied Territories? Granted these aren’t really part of Israel (are they?), but Israel is the Occupying Power there. Do all the people living in the OT enjoy the same rights and freedoms?

    • Reds
      May 16, 2013, 9:11 pm

      Guest who below?

      link to electronicintifada.net

      Israeli Jewish hate rally against Africans in Tel Aviv caught on video as Haaretz deletes article about it
      Racism Report: Africans in Israel
      Report for the African Refugee Development Center (ARDC) to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD)

      link to youtube.com

      Or any International Human Rights groups will so the state of Israel is quite racist

    • a blah chick
      May 16, 2013, 9:24 pm

      “Muslims living in Israel enjoy more freedom than those living in most Arab countries.”

      Israel deserves you.

    • Blank State
      May 16, 2013, 10:00 pm

      “It is, in fact, the most tolerant nation in the region. Muslims living in Israel enjoy more freedom than those living in most Arab countries”

      Yeah, well, that must be when the batshit crazy orthos aren’t spitting on bus riding women, or throwing rocks at them because they wanna pray at the wailing wall. But, gee, just because they spit on and stone thier own Jewish folk, we mustn’t think they’d be intolerant of Muslims, eh???

    • RoHa
      May 16, 2013, 10:09 pm

      “Israel is not listed because it is not a racist nation. It is, in fact, the most tolerant nation in the region….Palestine is not listed because it doesn’t exist outside the imagination of self hating pseudo intellectuals like yourself.”

      Love the tolerance.

      • James Canning
        May 17, 2013, 2:18 pm

        Bravo, RoHa. Palestine does exist, even if this annoys Mitt Romney, Sheldon Adelson, AIPAC, etc etc et al. et al.

    • K Renner
      May 21, 2013, 10:55 am

      And smoking two packs of cigarettes a day, eating only the most processed red meats, and not doing any exercise at all is the best way to stay consistently healthy and have a long life.

  4. German Lefty
    May 16, 2013, 1:24 pm

    I just had a look at the map. Germany is between 5 and 10%. The USA is between 0 and 5%. Honestly, I find it hard to believe that US citizens are more racially tolerant than Germans. Also, France is between 20 and 30%. That’s even higher than Hungary or Russia. This can’t be true!

    Survey: Why does Israel need to be defined as the Jewish state?
    link to youtube.com

    From the 2012 Israeli Democracy Index:
    “The most common preference among the Jewish public (41.9%) is for the dual definition of Israel as a “Jewish and democratic” state. A total of 34.3% ascribe greater importance to the Jewish component, while only 21.8% favor the democratic one.
    In categorizing the areas of friction in Israeli society, the tension between Jews and Arabs ranks as the most severe, followed (in descending order) by the tension between religious and secular, rich and poor, right and left (in terms of views on politics and security), and Mizrahim and Ashkenazim.
    The sense of feeling part of the state and its problems differs greatly between Jewish and Arab respondents (72.9% and 27.7%, respectively).
    A majority of the Jewish respondents (58.3%) feel that Israel’s Arab citizens are not discriminated against, while a majority of the Arab respondents (74.9%) hold that they are subject to discrimination.
    A majority of the Jewish sample (89.1%) are proud to be Israeli. Among the Arab respondents, the sense of pride is lower, representing a minority view (44.5%).”
    94.2% of Jewish Israelis say that they trust the army (IDF).
    link to en.idi.org.il

    See the pages 124 and 125 for religious and ethnic tensions in Israel compared to other countries:
    link to en.idi.org.il
    (The higher the score, the less the tension.)

    • James Canning
      May 16, 2013, 2:31 pm

      @German Lefty – - I too find it unlikely that Americans are more “racially tolerant” than Germans.

    • Dutch
      May 16, 2013, 3:02 pm

      @ German Lefty

      Absolutely right. This map is a joke. Looking at the colors it must be American-made. Probably in Washington. Oops.

      • lysias
        May 16, 2013, 4:16 pm

        The study appears to have been done by a couple of Swedish free market enthusiasts. And look what countries came out on top!

        This study is a very good example of one of the corollaries of Murphy’s Law: Prolonged research tends to confirm your conclusions.

        I bet the study involved no controls for untruthful responses. So what we get is a study that finds those societies most nonracist where the public declaration of racism meets the most social opprobrium.

      • Stephen Shenfield
        May 16, 2013, 7:24 pm

        The trouble is that the results are based on what people say, not what they do. If an overwhelming majority of Americans really don’t mind living next to people of a different “race” why are most residential areas in the USA still racially segregated? Obviously Americans are more careful than people in some other countries to observe the rules of political correctness when they answer questions from pollsters.

    • Woody Tanaka
      May 16, 2013, 5:41 pm

      It depends on who you ask and what part of the country. There’s racism in the USA, for sure, but it’s not like it used to be. (also, it’s self reporting, so there’s that.)

      • James Canning
        May 17, 2013, 2:29 pm

        @Woody – - Isn’t the real issue typically more one arising from issues of “social class” rather than race?

        • Woody Tanaka
          May 19, 2013, 9:09 pm

          James Canning: No, there are a lot of people in the US that are flat out bigots. They usually don’t limit themselves to race, but include religion and ethnicity, as well.

          There are some class conflicts in the US, to be sure, but the people I’m talking about simple hate people who people who aren’t like them.

    • Ron Edwards
      May 16, 2013, 10:19 pm

      This graphic artifact can’t be taken seriously.

      For one thing, it shows only that the Americans surveyed *said* certain things. How that relates to their actual values, and whether they even know that relationship, is entirely slid past.

      For another, if you want to study X with a survey, the only way to do it is to ask questions about actual behavior that are related to X, preferably many questions, preferably oblique enough so that X is not entirely obvious. Otherwise people lie like rugs, whether to preserve their self-image, or to please their perception of the readers of the results, or any number of other mental ploys.

      It’s propaganda – and *lousy* propaganda at that. What next, graphs to show how happy Americans and white Europeans are compared to everyone else?

  5. quercus
    May 16, 2013, 2:15 pm

    The Washington Post is a worthless rag. Who cares what they write?

    • James Canning
      May 16, 2013, 7:12 pm

      @Quercus – - I assume you are aware of how important the Washington Post was, in helping to end the Vietnam War.
      Still an imporant influencer of opinion, but sadly in the wrong way more often than not (in matters pertaining to Israel/Palestine).

  6. James Canning
    May 16, 2013, 2:29 pm

    Another race? Or, is it another religion? This would seem likely explanation for Indian figure.

    • German Lefty
      May 16, 2013, 3:03 pm

      Another race? Or, is it another religion?

      No! I looked it up. The different options were: drug addicts, people of a different race, people who have AIDS, immigrants/foreign workers, homosexuals, people of a different religion, heavy drinkers, unmarried couples living together, people who speak a different language, militant minority, Muslims.

      USA Germany
      Drug addicts 93.8 % 74.2 %
      Heavy drinkers 72.9 % 78.5 %
      Homosexuals 26.0 % 17.3 %
      People who have AIDS 15.9 % 18.3 %
      Immigrants/foreign workers 13.2 % 15.7 %
      People who speak a different language 11.1 % 10.3 %
      People of a different race 4.1 % 8.6 %
      People of a different religion 2.6 % 5.1 %
      Unmarried couples living together 8.4 % 2.7 %

      In India, each percentage is between 40 and 60 %. Perhaps there’s this big difference, because people of different cultures interpret the question differently and attach a different weight to the question. Indians are known for their hospitality. I really don’t think that they are hateful people. Also, it could be that Indians want to choose their neighbours more carefully, because the population density is higher.

      • seafoid
        May 16, 2013, 4:27 pm

        A lot of Hindus in India would not live beside Muslims. Especially the middleclass BJP Hindus.
        And forget about sharing an apartment block with untouchables or the gloriously un PC classification of “other backward classes”

        link to en.wikipedia.org

        • James Canning
          May 17, 2013, 6:45 pm

          @seafoid – - But “Muslims” might be of identical race to Hindus objecting to their presence next door.

      • Tzombo
        May 16, 2013, 4:55 pm

        I suspect the main difference is that Indians answer more honestly.

        • piotr
          May 19, 2013, 11:40 am

          There is definitely something to be suspicious about here. One conjecture that I have is that Indians perceive caste/income distinctions as related to “race” even when we think about all these groups as being uniformly of “Indian race”. After all, the caste groups are exogamous etc.

          The second conjecture I have is that predominant factor of segregation in USA is by income, with people striving to be in “as good neighborhood as possible”, and racial segregation is a bit of a side-effect. Additionally, admitting to racists attitudes is a bit shameful in USA. On the other hand, you can see a river separating lower-middle class white ethnic neighborhood (with some Black Brasilians?!) from purely Black neighborhood, so I guess it is not simply income that people care about. But the river I have in mind also separates so-so school district from a really bad school district and so on and so on.

        • James Canning
          May 19, 2013, 7:45 pm

          Notion of “caste” is Hindu. Religious, not racial.

      • James Canning
        May 16, 2013, 6:56 pm

        @German Lefty – - I think some people regard a “Muslim” as by definition someone of a different “race”, when the difference may be religious. So, they admit they would object to someone of a different race when they would in fact be objecting to that person’s religion.

      • eGuard
        May 17, 2013, 5:10 am

        So, the study was broader (more options), but the map here only pictures the race question.

      • James Canning
        May 19, 2013, 7:49 pm

        One factor may simply be that many Hindus do not want their children to marry Muslims. Or to “date” them, for that matter. (And the reverse is also true, often enough.)

  7. Ecru
    May 16, 2013, 3:38 pm

    Unfortunately, the Swedish economists did not include all of the World Values Survey data in their final research paper. So I went back to the source…

    Well I looked at his link and in the World Values Survey Aggregated File 1981-2005 there’s Israel listed between Iraq and Italy. OK it’s late, I’m knackered after a long day and there’s no way I’m going to sift through numbers right now but how did the author of this map miss it? Or have I missed something (which wouldn’t be too surprising right now).

    • irmep
      May 18, 2013, 4:50 pm

      That cited 43 megabyte SPSS dataset only lists Israel survey data for a single year: 2001 (column S020, rows 130600 to 131798) or 1198 registries (responses).

      The SPSS Israel dataset for the neighbors question that fed the WAPO map (A124_02) scores -4 in every cell which seems to be the designator for no response, so it doesn’t look like the question was even asked. Actually, if that assumption is correct, many survey questions were not asked.

      There seems to be valid year 2001 survey data only for less politically sensitive questions like “How often discusses political matters with friends.” And “the importance of child obedience.” (A042).

      I’ve written the World Values Survey organization (which claims its survey results cover 90% of the world’s population) to determine why the Israel data is so scant. Obviously, given Israel’s huge influence in the US, and despite the flaws in any survey, it would be valuable to have comparative quantitative survey data, rather than only rely on the constantly trumpeted assertions of “shared values” (especially from WAPO).

      g.

      • Ecru
        May 19, 2013, 2:11 am

        Thank you for that Irmep. I HATE chugging through figures, I’ve frankly done enough of it to last me four or five lifetimes. Interesting that the Israeli date-set is so sparse though.

        • irmep
          May 19, 2013, 8:19 am

          I emailed several people in charge of fielding the survey, mentioning this discussion. Two of them responded with essentially the same answers:

          Response #1
          “many thanks for making us aware of this discussion. As concerns your
          question, the only reason why the survey has been only conducted once in
          Israel and why responses to many of the questions we usually ask are
          missing is deficient funding.If we were able to raise sufficient funds, we
          had surveyed Israel more frequently and with a more complete questionnaire. I hope this explanation answers your questions.”

          Response #2

          “We would love to have more complete data from Israel. The problem has simply been one of obtaining funding. The World Values Surveys are generally funded from within each country and up to now, it has been difficult to obtain funding there. Nevertheless, we hope to include Israel in the present wave…the University of Haifa is currently seeking funding to carry out the (complete) current wave of the World Values Survey in Israel.”

        • Ecru
          May 19, 2013, 2:45 pm

          Ha! So Israel doesn’t want to fund a survey that’ll show it for the bigoted hell hole that it is. What a surprise!

        • German Lefty
          May 19, 2013, 5:22 pm

          “Bigoted hell hole” – that’s a good label!

  8. maggielorraine
    May 16, 2013, 5:41 pm

    Racism is a hell of a lot more complex than who you want to live next door to. Structural racism anyone? Having a black friend or a Muslim neighbor or a gay nephew doesn’t mean you aren’t bigoted, that everything is good and fair and there aren’t structural barriers to equality that must be addressed. This survey is a b*llshit whitewash of oppression.

  9. Keith
    May 16, 2013, 7:14 pm

    This poll is pure propaganda! Imperial B.S.! Oh, the US, Canada and Australia are soooo tolerant! Perhaps a review of how we treated, and continue to treat, the aboriginal population would suggest a different level of tolerance. The notion of these three countries being the embodiment of “post racial” enlightenment doesn’t rise to the level of a bad joke. Actions speak louder than words, and slick pollsters can make it all disappear, even as they reinforce the “clash of civilizations” theme.

  10. ritzl
    May 16, 2013, 9:08 pm

    An interesting first pass. The methodology needs to be reviewed and expanded though. Ireland, Denmark, Portugal, Austria, Greece, and Estonia are notably also not characterized, all within the OECD framework which includes Israel. Tough to objectively compare and conclude a universal with a good portion of the data missing.

  11. RoHa
    May 16, 2013, 10:12 pm

    I’m dubious about light-blue Japan. I would have expected it to rank with to South Korea. I’m sure the place has become more tolerant since I lived there, but I suspect there were plenty of people who gave an “approved” answer rather than what they really thought.

    • tokyobk
      May 17, 2013, 6:37 am

      In my opinion and experience Japan and Korea were on par in terms of xenophobia in the 1980′s but now Japan is far more advanced than Korea in this regard as well as in women’s rights.

      Now, this is true for foreigners in general but particularly regarding Westerners (of all colors). The regard for other Asian groups in both countries is still retrograde, though here again, imo, Japan is a little more advanced than Korea.

      • RoHa
        May 17, 2013, 7:02 am

        “In my opinion and experience Japan and Korea were on par in terms of xenophobia in the 1980′s but now Japan is far more advanced than Korea in this regard ”

        I left Japan in 1990, so this may be so.

  12. Qualtrough
    May 16, 2013, 11:21 pm

    In all the Asian countries I have visited or lived in, skin color is an obsession to an extent that you would be hard to find even among Western racists. Alabaster white is at the top of the scale and darker shades at the bottom. This is seen as normal, and hardly worthy of comment, even by those with darker skin tones, who have internalized those values and will quite openly tell you how ugly their skin color is and how beautiful white skin is. It should therefore be no surprise that the opinions of Africans or black people in general are not very positive, even if they have had zero actual dealings with them.

  13. James Canning
    May 17, 2013, 2:21 pm

    @Qualtrough – - Some observers say much the same thing obtains in South America.
    Perhaps even in Cuba, and elsewhere in North America. Haiti, especially.

  14. MichaelSmith
    May 18, 2013, 12:07 pm

    Much of what’s measured here is how honest or how afraid or how indoctrinated people are, and we really don’t know what the methodology was. How did they get enough data on some very small countries or very large countries or countries it would have been hard to conduct a survey in? What to do about people who have an intense antipathy to one particular group who don’t profess any general hostility to people “of another race”?

    Also, people often judge their own country based on where they live and their immediate circle of acquaintances. Few nations are that small or that homogeneous. I don’t have a problem believing that Germany is 5% more prejudiced than the United States (whatever that may in fact mean), or that the United States is 5% more prejudiced than Germany, or that a few highly bigoted people in one country are outweighed by many more people who are certainly prejudiced though to a lesser degree (or that the results are skewed by the means used to gather them). Every country has its affluent, educated, metropolitan “bubble” and its more insular hinterland (but is the “bubble” really as unprejudiced and cosmopolitan as it supposes?).

    • German Lefty
      May 19, 2013, 1:58 pm

      What to do about people who have an intense antipathy to one particular group who don’t profess any general hostility to people “of another race”?
      That comment reminded me of this Mondoweiss article:
      link to mondoweiss.net
      As one soldier explained to me that day, “We’re not racist. It’s just Arabs who can’t come here.”

      Every country has its affluent, educated, metropolitan “bubble” and its more insular hinterland
      Please don’t be prejudiced against non-urbanites. Just because we don’t like crowds, noise and pollution doesn’t mean that we are bigoted.
      Also, you have to consider that in Western countries the living standard in villages is very similar or the same to that of cities. In countries like India, however, there are huge differences between cities and villages in terms of living standard. These differences probably also contribute to different attitudes.

  15. James Canning
    May 18, 2013, 5:08 pm

    @German Lefty – - I have difficulty answering your questions because my posts often get held up for days, and longer.

    You wanted me to confess I was a “Zionist” because I think it difficult for the programme to succeed, by which Israel would be replaced by Palestine.

    • German Lefty
      May 19, 2013, 1:34 pm

      @ James
      I have difficulty answering your questions because my posts often get held up for days, and longer.
      Well, you had no difficulty posting THAT comment! So, why didn’t you just send your answers instead?

      You wanted me to confess I was a “Zionist” because I think it difficult for the programme to succeed, by which Israel would be replaced by Palestine.
      Nope. Don’t twist my words. I didn’t ask you about which solution you consider most likely or least likely. My questions were about what you WANT, what you SUPPORT, and what you think SHOULD be done. Whether these goals are easy to achieve or not is an entirely different issue.
      If you believe that people should only have achievable goals, then we’d better bury our ideals and stop fighting for world peace and social justice, because that’s a waste of time.
      Besides, you stated that you want Israel to get out of the West Bank. Do you seriously believe that a two-state solution is MORE likely than a one-state solution? Certainly not. Currently, ANY solution seems equally unlikely.
      However, that’s irrelevant to my questions. I want to know how your ideal solution looks like, regardless of its achievability. Do you want one state or two states? What should happen to the right of return (for Palestinians) and the law of return (for Jews)? Should Jews and Palestinians be treated equally in the area of historical Palestine or not? Should state and religion be separated or not? Tell me now! If you don’t reply, I’ll categorise you as Zionist.

      • James Canning
        May 19, 2013, 7:53 pm

        @German Lefty – - I strongly endorse the 2002 Saudi peace plan.

        The art of diplomacy is the pursuit of what is possible.

        Bashar al-Assad said time and again he would sign a peace deal with Israel immediately, provided Israel got out of the Golan Heights.

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