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Total number of comments: 926 (since 2010-07-08 12:35:09)

tokyobk

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  • Jewish community is Humpty Dumpty-- it won't come back together again, and shouldn't
    • Tree - I mentioned her as someone who has been accused of anti-Semitism to make the point that people accused of anti-Semitism have not been barred from speaking at what Keith obviously thinks is some exclusive conversation that hides from critics of Israel or controversial speakers.

      Finkelstein, Weiss, Shipman have been -accused- of anti-semitism. Are they anti-semites? Of course not. Does my mentioning that they have been -accused- of anti-Semitism imply agreement. No. In fact, that I had them invited means I want them to have a chance to respond.

      I mentioned that were I still at that task, I would have no problem inviting Atzmon, Weir or anyone else to do what we did there, open debate, not moaning about victimisation.

      I understand the criticisms of the term Jew-hobbyist.

    • Sibiriak,

      I think it is useful in describing a type of person drawn to the I/P discussion. I think it is a shade of grey in what is otherwise considered a black and white scenario. I think I have used it to mean that while you cannot know whats in someones heart, you can know what their interests are. I don't believe I have ever called anyone who comments here regularly an anti-semite. It is clear, however, that there are several people here who are drawn to the increasingly visible/audible Jewish ID aspect of I/P.

      Though it has this descriptive utility, imo, you are correct it does lend itself like "racist" to being used as an ad-hominem that shifts focus to the alleged character of a person and away from the argument itself, and should be used carefully if at all.

    • Tree-

      Your last point I accept.

      I did ask Phil the question as you describe. I was not among those who wanted him to feel guilty, in fact I wanted Phil to make them feel guilty where appropriate.

      But yes, it was mostly a Jewish conversation,among a diverse crowd of Jews and non Jews, and moreover I can see how people as different as me, Keith, Phil could all be considered Jew hobbyists.

    • Tree-

      I am not sure why you see my being very careful about Weir is the same as slandering her or participating in her slander. Meaning, I am not instantly assuming she is a bigot just because someone, even JVP which I respect, says so. In fact, this is the opposite of jumping on the accusation bandwagon, the opposite of tossing around antisemitism accusations lightly.

      I find Jew-hobby a useful term because it can describe someone who likes to discuss Jewish power topics without lobbing the anti-Semitism accusation. A Jew hobbyist may or may not be an anti-Semite. This is again an effort to be more careful, not less.

      As for me and Hophmi? We may agree on some aspects of anti-Semitism. About I/P, no I stand firmly with all those here who completely reject the idea of Jewish supremacy of any kind over Palestinians. I find the use anti-Semitism charges to cover Israel to be especially despicable.

    • .. I don't know anything about Weir to evaluate whether the accusations are correct or not imo, I do know she has been accused of clustering legitimate criticisms of Israel with old school Jew baiting. My point to Keith was, contrary to his fantasy, I did and would indeed host people who have been accused of anti-Semitism (Finkelstein, Weiss, Shipman all came and others) and were I still there I would host Weir in a heartbeat.

      In fact, Keith and others only know of Eliezer, -because- I invited Phil so a bit strange for him to imagine it as a place that avoided this conversation or any side of it.

      Anything else?

    • Keith:

      You said this:

      "Anti-Semite? Keep talking like that and maybe Ben Karp will invite you to Eliezer where you and he can hobnob in plush surroundings, eat good food and enjoy fine wine (ask Phil), all the while basking in the reflective glow of shared victimhood."

      I responded with an accurate description of what went on at Eliezer, not your fantasy of Jews huddled around groaning about victimisation.

      You have indeed rejected the idea that anti-Semitism was endemic to Europe for much of its history, implying that I meant Europeans were essentially anti-Semitic when I never agreed that. So those are direct response to what you have said here. I may miss some of your comments so sorry if I seemed to have been avoiding responding to you.

    • Hi Tree --

      No swipe at Weir at all.

      Keith seems to think I hosted private Jewish meetings which exclude people like him. I replied that in fact I went out of my way to host people who were considered dissident to mainstream conversations about I/P and were I still there would have no problem hosting Weir, someone who has been accused of being anti-Semitic.

    • Keith -- you flatter yourself to think you are someone I would not have invited you to discuss anything, including anti-Semitism, were you around town. And yes it would have been over some nice bourbon. Why not.

      I don't have any reason to think you are particularly loathsome in person or a vulture. I do think you want to deny that anti-Semitism was an -endemic- (please refresh your understanding of this word it does not mean essential) feature of European society and also want to cast it as a rational response to Jewish malfeasance. I consider that despicable and not on tribal grounds because I fins it despicable when applied otherwise. I don't see any rational reason to pogrom or make Jews live in a ghetto or wear different color shoes etc... etc... etc...

      Fact is, the only person in my whole time arranging completely open discussions about a wide range of subjects who I refused to host was Pamela Geller.

      Were I still around I would have no problem hosting a debate with almost anyone of your Jew-hobby heroes, even Mr. Atzmon, certainly Israel critics who are perhaps on the line of some old school Jew clustering such as has been accused about Weir (I don(t know her work).

    • Jews have often been taken as either super or sub human, not as normal.

      Normalizing the Jew means becoming like other groups who are presumed to have a range of opinions, skills and allegiances. Not all Jews are untied under Zionism, whatever its pretentions (one of which I mentioned was precisely to turn Jews into a "normal" nation). But, most American Jews are correctly assumed to support Israel. That is changing, which is Phil's point and we both agree its for the good.

    • Ironically, one of the Zionist dreams was that Jews could finally be normal citizens of they town country, that the police officer would be Jewish as would be the criminal. Jews could be scholars and farmers and bus drivers.

      In fact it will probably be the collapse of Zionism and the split of the Jewish community into the same various camps you find in most groups, that will lead to full normalisation.

      I agree with Phil, most importantly its good for I/P and good for America and lastly, btw, good for the Jews.

  • A year after Shipman lost his Yale job for speaking out on Israel's actions, some Jews say the same thing
    • Kris --

      Most recent, imo.

      Dan Crowther asks:

      I want to ask a question here: does anyone here, after watching the “Iran debate” and “The Lobby’s” antics ever question the shibboleth that all of European “antisemitism” was irrational and based solely on a racist hatred? Cuz you can read a million and one French, German, English, Spanish, Russian (and others) writers describing THE EXACT SAME shit happening in their countries at different times and obviously in different places.

      Its a question Phil should answer. We’re watching a worldwide conspiracy and shakedown right before our eyes, and no one here denies it. I’m wondering if people think this is the ONLY time the stereotype or the accusation is true."

      Keith, of course agrees (and Henry Ford and Martin Luther...) . This is an old story. Its the Jews then and now. Antisemitism charges (which are always inflated - Annie (see even this thread) , and never really so bad -- Citizen (see under Keith following this quote were not so bad anyway), are effectively a cover for Jewish malfeasance.

      I said -some-. This does not define the pro Palestinian movement or MW, even the comment section.

      Dan's comment is about 2015 about an Iran deal that American Jews in fact support in the majority. Support their American president

      But, for him seemingly its just one dot on a long unbroken line.

    • I respect any persons reasonable self-identity where its no harm to others.

      But, you do know Chris Rock stopped performing this piece, right?

      He realised that white audiences were laughing just a little too hard.

      Judaism is thousands of years old. Zionism and Israel just a hundred and a half.

      There are affirmative ways to be Jewish that are not tied to armed nationalism or anchored to either a positive or negative stereotype.

    • Just a note: Bruce Shipman did not work for Yale. He worked for a private organisation that has official ties ti the campus ministry.

    • Thats not the right analogy, though.

      The correct comparative would be whether actions by ISIS in Iraq contribute to Islamophobia in the suburbs of Paris.

      I say no, not legitimately at least.

    • Kris--

      And that is my issue with the "Ewige Jude" (Eternal Jew) themes that -some- people attracted to the I/P issue return to over and again. Watch -some- comments here, even if grounded in legitimate criticisms of Israel or even American Jewish support of Israel, drift towards the theme of finally getting to be able to tell the alleged truth about the Jews, then, now and always.

      As if there is some particular Jewish essence, unchanging and unchangeable throughout all space and time.

      Certainly, many people within a group also claim a special Jewish or black or Japanese or white "soul," but its a very dangerous way of categorising human beings. imo.

    • tree -- well we definitely also agree that bigotry. true bigotry against a group is defined not by a particular criticism or even general critique of a particular time and place but through essentializing.

      It also happens to be an especially useful way to detect anti-semitism through all the BS (imo coming from all sides).

    • W Jones.

      Believe it or not were saying the same thing here as in my second point to tree.

      Your point about Puritans and Natives is exactly right.

    • tree --

      My second point, which I am curious what you think about is that power/no power is also insufficient as a moral or even rational indicator of which group is fair game for critique.
      Not only because all groups, perhaps especially Jews (my reference to the myths in which power/no power is -part- of the story) have in moments both.

      African Americans have speeding power near the equivalent of the South Korean GDP, over one trillion dollars, there dis a black president, and African Americans as a group dominate school boards in several major cities. But no one in their right mind would argue that Sandra Bland for a striking example, could happen in a country where black people have equal due process to whites.

      So, can White Anglo Saxon Protestants opine on black Americans, politically or culturally. and have their arguments taken on merit? I sure hope so. That neither race nor relative power disqualifies him.

      My point is that I think Phil, who I guess I should add I like a lot as a person, and whose larger project I support, seems to be creating a Jewish shaped exemption from what would be his normal position on who gets to say what. Of course this is in response to the very type of disqualifying from the self-appointed and assumed leaders of the Jewish community he often writes about.

    • Indeed. Though, strangely, Witzelsucht begins with a "W."

    • Phil ends his observations (which I think are correct regarding the double standard) with the following:

      "It’s one thing if only members of a persecuted minority get to comment on that minority; I understand that ancient prohibition. But when you have power– a lot, I say; or a “modicum of power,” as Foxman says — then you should be able to take some criticism."

      This is a shift from his earlier point that truth is truth regardless of the source. I am suggesting it is a kind of Jewish exemption. Since Jews have power they can take it. Since other groups don't the ancient tradition of only members of that group being able to criticise still holds. I am saying this is not morally or logically consistent.

    • Phil,

      If the first part is true, that the truth matters more than the source, and I think I agree, than your second part is not morally consistent, imo. I think this is important to you as a kind of Jewish exemption, a way out of a particular kind of community pressure, to be sure )which as you know I support), but also a way around liberal conventions you will still apply generally to other groups, especially those with whom you have empathy.

      In fact, groups can be powerful and not in different times and places and even in the same time and place. In the Jewish example, from the myths, Esther and Exodus both depend on this combination.

      Shipman is either right or not, as he might be opining about Palestinians or African Americans in another case, regardless of his ethnicity or religion.

  • Videos: 'Vanity Fair' story about anti-Semitic pogrom in Paris is falling apart
  • Over 1,000 Black activists, scholars and artists sign statement supporting freedom and equality for Palestinian people
    • I used to think that JH but actually Jewish fear is less important to me these days. All feelings are less important to me than all lives.
      Many whites feared and continue to fear racial change. So what? There are more compelling reason to look down on the Jew hobbyists imo.

      In any case, this is a major development. I could never have imagined, say, Black Students at Yale signing this.

      I am sorry to see that none of the Jews of color groups that I belong to have signed on. In fact most American (non Israelite or Black Hebrew) JOC's that I know are fairly supportive of Israel or liberal Zionist. That may change though. Everything is changing.

    • Page: 9
    • PeaceThroughJustice August 19, 2015, 1:44 am
      tokyoBK: ” and for some Jews are the interesting part of this”

      Said the founder of a Jews-only club.

      You're ignorant. Or, perhaps you believe that any Jewish engagement is necessarily exclusive.

      The club I founded was never Jews only. Members have been from every religious background and none. And my purpose was to bend normal rules of community engagement, which is the reason you know about it.

    • Jhitchcock:

      "And it still sounds like many of the commenters still need to figure out what antisemitism is exactly because while it is like other forms of racism and bigotry, like all specific forms of bigotry, it also has unique characteristics about which several commenters seem to be ignorant, not care, or even actually believe."

      Some are just tired of BS accusations of anti-Semitism.
      Some don't care and for some Jews are the interesting part of this, so they don't want that part diminished even though it would be quite helpful for everyone especially Palestinians (imho) . This , for example, describes much of Atzmon's audience for example.

    • Anti-colonialist:

      She wasn't clear enough in her statement about universal anti-racist principles?

      Or, does every #antisemtismmatters need an #allracismmatters rspsonse?

      While many claims of anti-semitism are ridiculous covers for Israeli bad behavior, I think I have never seen -any- claim of anti-Semitism not parsed into meaninglessness here. Even O'Keefe laughingly recalling his growing awareness of the truth in "Fuckin Jew" as a slur.

      Such as in just under the passage Kris quotes:

      "PeaceThroughJustice: I didn’t realize that O’Keefe didn’t actually say “F*ck’n Jews” like posters here have claimed. "
      ————————
      [Sibiriak August 18, 2015, 12:41 am]

      In fact, he referred to the expression “f*ck’n Jew” as the worst insult there was when he was growing up, and that looking back he realized that the expression embodied some truth, that it represented some generalized awareness of the [highly negative] Jewish impact on human history. In short, bigotry toward Jews is justified."

      But, that;s not anti-Semitism apparently.

  • Roundtable on the Palestinian solidarity movement and Alison Weir
    • I have no idea of the JVP - Weir situation. I haven't followed it as I mentioned. I did not comment on this thread until Daana included O'Keefe on a list of people accused (unfairly) of being an anti-Semite because he is clearly not like the others mentioned who have always avoided saying inflammatory things about Jews as a group.

      Where is the yes or no question?

      All religions, cultures, nations and tribes are open to criticism. Being a fierce critic of any of those categories does not make one a bigot.

      "Jew" has been since the Enlightenment a Venn diagram; culture, religion and heritage have all made one considered a Jew at different times in different places.. Jews and non-Jews both use this floating meanings as well as both philo and anti semites.

      Obviously someone who doesn't like ethnic Jews simply because they are Jews is a bigot. A person who ascribes all Jews (in every category essential qualities is also imo a bigot. A person who is a strong critic of the Jewish religion or culture may or may not be a bigot. I consider myself a critic of Jewish culture and religion in fact, and not an anti-semite.

      The problem with "tribal behaviors" is that its slippery towards essentialism. What does that mean? I think people should be careful in all cases whether dealing with Jews or any other group. Often this is a mask for bigotry (since it leans into essentializing) but certainly not always.

      I don't believe any criticism of Israel or Zionism is inherently anti-semitic. I agree with many critics of Israel that to insinuate natural Jewish allegiance to Zionism to be itself anti-semitism.

      I think threes another useful category, which I call a Jew-Hobbyist. A Jew Hobbyist is interested in Jewish power as much as any Jewish Nationalist. I don't automatically assume this person is a racial bigot, as many or perhaps most would help their Jewish neighbor as soon as any other or associate in a friendly way with Jews. However, the Jew Hobbyist will find the Jewish power element in any story and did so long before Israel. It seems to me a good deal of Jew Hobbyists gravitate to comments sections on I/P.

    • Actually, I swooped in to make a comment about including O'Keefe on a list of people who have been accused -unfairly- of being antisemites.

      I included a video showing why I think he has been -fairly- accused. But, then you pointed out it was acting like anti-semitism was the chosen bigotry because I did not also point out that he made bigoted remarks about Americans.

      About Weir and JVP I have said nothing because I have no idea about the situation.

    • You said the long thread on anti-semtism should "please" me since I "like" to comment on it. It doesn't. I would like nothing more than to not comment on it (I think we may agree here). But, I don't take my commenting on it to be a problem. I actually don't know of any other non or anti-Zionist (I consider myself the first) who does, so it ends up being people inclined to exaggerate who do so, and that also bothers me. And btw if indeed you take anti Jewish bigotry seriously that makes me happy. Happy to be wrong. I see the same pattern here however as always with you: Its not antisemitism or if it is its not worse than anything else and further even to mention it is to contribute to devaluing other forms of bigotry.

      As for linking articles, yes I m not going to do your search for you since its so easy.

      1) Hit search
      2) write Marc Ellis
      3) Look at number of comments
      4) often 3, 4 or 5 comments.

      If he writes about Jewish power he can get more. But my point was the above.

      My original point was that its easy to say that Jews and antisemitism is a diversion, and I agree it is, but its harder to acknowledge that for some/many here that is the very topic of interest.

    • "so like accusations against americans as being supremacists are dumb, but when they're said about jews they are bigoted. ok, that makes sense /not."

      Both are dumb and bigoted by definition.

      But, yes again I think generalizing about Jews and Muslims is more offensive than about Israelis and Pakistanis. I guess you disagree.

    • Annie; "what a bunch of BS"

      I actually can't remember a claim of anti-semitism that you didn't reject outright as BS. Or, if not reject, start to see the claim itself as implying that calling out bigotry towards Jews is simultaneously denying bigotry towards Gentiles. You have done that before as well as add the argument that we don't even need a word for anti-Jewish bigotry and to have one is more bigotry against everyone else! Since O'Keefe is not defensible you have gone with that. I missed the part where he slandered Americans! How Jewish supremacist of me!

    • Um, I mentioned anti-semitism because Danaa included him among people who were (and I agree) unfairly accused of it. O'keefe, however has been - fairly- accused of it.

      The eleven minute take included his statements, and also included his absolutely stupid generalization about Americans.

      In general though I am less offended by dumb statements about nationalities than about groups of people so I would be more offended by someone bashing Muslims than Pakistanis so no its not the same for me, and the rant is about Jews with Americans as an aside.

      So, in a thread about antisemitism I mentioned anti-semitism.

      Annie, you will always find a way to make any claim anti-semitism disappear (or be just as bad as or what about what about what about? because you think every mention of it is in the service of Israel.

      I'll remember to talk about Tibet and Syria next time I criticize Israel, okay?

    • To answer your quesiton;

      Marc Ellis. He can get more comments if he touches on the right type of power story. As I said, an affirmative non-Zionism has almost no interest here.

      You know what other stories get less hits here than stories about Jewish Power? Stories about Palestinians.

      Please me? You're wrong about my motives and interests.

    • W.Jones.

      I actually did not comment on this even though I do comment often on the theme here. Because I just don't know enough about her or her work.

      What I respond to is when people (re)contextualize, mitigate, parse, deny, rationalize, justify, -every- bigoted expression towards Jews to the point where its clear nothing was is or can ever be anti-semitism. That is just an attempt to mitigate outrageous Zionist claims, not to deal with history.

    • I guess you have no problem with what O'Keefe says or the way he says it. But if that's the case, you are probably not going to call anything antisemitism ever and that is vital info for weighing your statements on the subject.

      And by the way, either you or I need our ears cleaned because in his description of his childhood (very Michael Oren type landscape he paints there where people really do hate the Jews, go figure?) he says it. The worst insult you could imagine. And he also says there must be a grain of truth. Perhaps you agree?

      Further to my statement on Jewish non-zionism threads. A story on direct action to help Palestinians, an essay on Palestinian culture, a roundtable between several Palestinians (complete absent Jewish power themes) is probably not going to generate the volume and intensity of comments here. Only the lurking power of the Jews can do that, frankly. And that is a reflection of the tastes of this comment section.

    • ...meaning there are some people drawn to this because its the Jews and the distracting pilpul is from all sides.

      For a certain type of Jew-hobbiest the interesting part of this is precisely the Weir-JVP controversy because the hit they are after is the power dynamic of the Jews invading, manipulating, distracting, consciously or hive-mind, covering for Jews everywhere, even the Israel they claim to fight.

      Take action that away and boooooring. Back to 5 comments.

      Palestine?

    • Danaa,

      O'Keefe? If you don't see him as an anti-semite then you simply don't believe any statement about Jews can be anti-semitism ever, or that anyone no matter how much they generalize and essentials the Jews can ever be an anti-semite. You can also find him chumming with David Duke if you wish to google.link to youtube.com

      He posts a rebuttal and maybe thats enough for you but in this case, he belongs no where near any of the others you mentioned, intellectually as well.

      And I would also say, this thread has over 800 comments.

      Threads that are affirmative of Jewish non-Zionism get about 5 comments if that. A fair number of the people who comment regularly here -only- comment about Jews.

  • President Obama wants us to argue about the special relationship
    • OldGeezer-

      You write:

      "That said it is extremely clear that what you fail to grasp, or accept, is that Israel and it’s zionist supporters are perpetrating crimes against humanity. They are violating international law. They are stealing the property of others. They are denying millions of innocent people their basic human rights. They are killing women children and babies in the hundreds and thousands to add to their ill gotten gains. "

      Its amazing to me that you see that any where in what I am writing, that is a defence of Zionism or Israel, or denial of crimes against Palestinians. At all. In fact I agree with Phil and others that a religious state, including Jewish Israel, has no justification anywhere. I am simply saying, is exactly what I said, that Phil omitted and Islamic state and then in fact went on to say Hamas needs revisionism. And I think there are the meanings I implied in those omissions.

    • ...-some- Westerners do...

    • JLD -- Even if it were true that the CIA set the stage for the Muslim Brotherhood, it does not address the issue above and btw another thing Westerners do is assume that the West in general (and white people) are the authors of everything bad about the world, which flops but still endorses eurocentrism. The MB predates 9/11 by decades and has its own origins as a response to the West but also from forces within Islam.

    • JLD -- ok let's take that as a starting position and assume it as a fact: Israel created Hamas.
      Now, even before the passage on Max Blumenthal it struck me as interesting that Phil used the the US not being a Christian state as a comparative position to Israel not being Jewish.
      So, again, is an Islamic state as offensive an idea as a Jewish or Christian one.
      For me its all the same and as I said I don't see a logical or moral position where any group gets a pass on imposing their religion, even as a majority.
      I do think there is some substance to the criticism that some progressives in the West tend to excuse if not identify with very un-progressive forces in the non-West, under the banner of anti-colonialsm but with, imo, some lowering of standards.

    • Hamas may be the resistance, created by occupation, but its interesting your parallel to not wanting a Jewish State in Palestine is your belief that America should not be a Christian state.

      Yet, Hamas, which you clearly want re-evaluated into legitimate freedom fighters, tacitly argues for an Islamic state.

      Do you also not want an Islamic state and if not is this not a contradiction?

      I don't see any legitimate argument for change in Israel that is not based in universal rights which would allow people to worship freely but would not sanction a state religion, even that of the majority. Just as you argue for Jews and Christians.

  • It's not bigoted to call out the Israel lobby over Iran Deal
    • JWalters -- Its good advice but you are assuming that unverified wants to do something other than identify "The Jews". Clearly unverified does, as Annie writes, think of the Jews as a unified pack. As, "The Jews" and I have not seen anything that says other than his beef is with the Jews not with Zionists or any other variety of Jew.

  • Defying Obama on Iran deal, Schumer cites Hamas
    • As an aside, thinking of Kerry back in Viet Nam now as a diplomat not soldier and commemorating Hiroshima the other day here in Japan with many Japanese and American friends: We humans waving different flags go to war as hated enemies, killing one another in horrible ways, and then some years later are sitting around as friends. I wish we could cut straight to the friendship part.

  • Obama tells Americans it is 'abrogation of my constitutional duty' to defer to Israel on Iran Deal
    • Obama is a very measured person. He does not say things randomly and tries his best not to off-the-cuff which is not his talent (hence teleprompters always). It is a very specific and as you say historical point.

    • Actually most of the world considered the (usually forgotten) ethnically cleansed soil at their feet to be quite legitimate. Its a good thing if this has changed since cleansing should be illegitimate.

    • Qualthrough - Warmongering from a safe vantage is one of the several anti-war themes in the great movie All Quiet on the Western Front. Your comment reminded me of the jingoistic professor blathering about battlefield glory in his class and then, with other old men, pouring over maps discussing battles in which young men are dying in the thousands.

  • Reps Deutch, Lowey, and Israel choose Netanyahu over Obama-- and who will bring down the hammer for the Iran Deal?
    • "According to a survey conducted by the Los Angeles Jewish Journal on July 22, 49% of American Jews support the deal, while only 31% oppose it. Yet, AIPAC’s high-profile anti-Iran deal campaign, coupled with aggressive activities of some other Jewish organizations, depicts the entire American Jewish community as “objectionist.” "

      As have a good portion of the people who have been commenting here.

      It seems from the poll you quote that Jews are more clear how they feel about this issue, and that they are both more in favor and less opposed to the deal than the general American category.

      53% of American Jews think congress should support the deal. 41% overall Americans agree. 35% of US Jews think congress should oppose. All Americans: 38%.

  • Understanding the Partition plan
    • א חסרון: די כלה איז צו שיין

      Its Yiddish. The problem: The bride is too pretty. Used when someone finds a problem in anything.

      But who knows what point Mooser was trying to make other than he knows some Yiddish and that all stories here are, finally, about him and his humorous monologue.

  • Did the BBC cover up the anti-Semitism of Gaza's children?
    • As much as possible I think the second of those.

    • I think of course you are right that someone would have said something like that but we shouldn't cater to those who will make extreme interpretations in the name of their politics.

      To give avery neutral example of my point:

      An early translator of the Tale of Genji thought to put chairs into the story in translation.

      Why chairs?

      Because he did not think any Westerner would believe that aristocrats anywhere would sit directly on the floor as Heian era (and later) nobles did.

      Fortunately, this did not become a trend.

      So, should translators change things for the context of the reader/listener or express the worldview of the speaker/writer? As much as possible I think not.

    • I defer humbly to your specific experience but in general, with translation, I think its a mistake to translate inaccurately in the name of trying to be more accurate. "al-yahood" does not mean Zionist or Israeli.

      Related, documentaries about the Pacific Theatre started in about the 90's to edit out or even overdub the word "Jap" used by American soldiers recalling their experience of 50 years prior because in the American political context this would have not only caused angry phone calls and letters but (similar to what I think you are saying) would have made the soldiers less sympathetic. I thought that was a mistake as much as I hate that word. "Japs" too may have only meant the hated enemy not every Japanese person.

    • The emotional and political consequences and implications for every group are important but only secondarily.

      Meaning:

      1) the truth matters and should be presented.
      2) If violence is done to Palestinians in the name of Jews than Jews will have to accept that it is reasonable for Palestinian children to conclude Jews are bad people.
      3) If Palestinian rhetoric has elements of anti-semitism that needs to be out front as well.

      Finally, I do believe strongly that the lives of any people are more important than the feelings of others, so it would not matter to me if the kids were quoting Hitler, it makes their lives and property no less valuable. (after peace an justice I will debate them about anti-semitism).

    • When Palestinians say "Yahud" it should be translated as "Jew" full stop.

      The emotional and political consequences and implications for every group are important but only secondarily.

      Meanwhile, the "special victimhood" claim is an old canard, stretching from a time where Jews were indeed experiencing discrimination and violence. If the Jews would just stop being Jews and claiming to be discriminated against it would all go away. Old argument predating Israel by centuries. Anti-semtiism doesn't need Israel.

      There is no comparison between prejudice experienced by African Americans and by Jews in America, however saying that "anti-Semitism" is a superfluous or special term (itself aggressive) is not only the above described ancient tactic, but exactly like the lame #alllivesmatter retort to #blacklivesmatter. What its claiming (beyond these Jews and their constant kvetching) is -- your particular is already covered by our definition of universal.

      Thats not true for any minority group, not just Jews. Each has its own particular relationship with the world and the majority, and the majority tends to like to blame minority for not properly assimilating.

  • The extremism of the center in Israel
    • Which is worse, being completely cynical, not giving a crap about the lives and property of the people being disrupted by occupation and then condemning this horrible act with feigned shock, mostly politically/PR motivated?

      Or, being genuinely shocked, and yet unable to see the connection between "genteel" occupation in the "suburbs" of Jerusalem etc... and the inevitability of this type of crime, committed by the advanced guard that escorts colonial settlement every single time, everywhere, in all of history?

      I vote the second and I believe its the case of the majority of Israelis and US supporters.

  • In wake of January attacks, French Muslims have been demonized in manufactured 'clash of civilizations'
    • Actually, DoubleStandard, Islam was in Europe before many now Christian places were Christian, especially in the East of the continent. So, Islam is indigenous to Europe. Not at all a foreign religion, by the way, the exact thing motherf*kers did to us Jews, even though we resided in, for example, Germany for a thousand years So, shame on you! Moreover, if a Muslim is born in Europe s/he is an indigenous European Muslim.

      I do suspect, however, that some here who parse, contextualise and deny antisemitism, even that it should have its own name, will nonetheless find much worthy utility in Islamophobia.

  • It's time for American Jews to recognize they have been duped
    • Ok sure you have a point Mooser which I concede. "we," the Jews who bought the story.

      If you never did, good on you (no sarcasm).

    • Congrats on your moral purity and forwardness.

      The article is about Israel hoodwinking American Jews.

      The "we" refers to American Jews.

      Obviously.

    • Without a doubt. A many decades seduction.
      But, Israel as it is, not as we learned it, can't stay behind the curtain.

  • Christian Zionists expose their anti-Semitism at conservative summit in Iowa
    • Donald July 24, 2015, 2:50 pm
      Annie–I agree with all that. Interesting how several of us had similar reactions.

      Annie Robbins July 24, 2015, 4:18 pm
      yes, very interesting donald.

      Totally predictable. My first thought when I read this. No way its getting a pass even if its criticising Zionists. Because, here, "anti-Semitism" is largely a Jewish tactic, and disappears in historical context anyway.

    • This is a case of an author not understanding his audience.

      Norton obviously thinks that there is such a thing as anti-semtisim (that can have its own label).
      He thinks anti-Semitism is ipso-facto a bad thing.
      He thinks that by calling Zionists "bad" people here, and pinning the tail on the Christian Zionists he will earn support and praise here.

      But, if he stuck around the comment section he would "learn" from the scholars and historians and human rights activists here that:

      Anti-semitism was not endemic to pre-war Europe.
      Anti-semitism in fact does not even need to be a term because its just another bigotry. In fact its anti-gentile to use the term anti-semitic.
      Where it did exist (if) it has a rational context and explanation and by the way, everybody was hated by everybody anyway.
      Where it does exist (Jewish schools getting shot up or Jews murdered in grocery stores) its not a priority.

    • Giles--

      No.

      Goldenhagen's thesis is that the German people in specific and much of pre-war Europe generally had within it enough animosity towards Jews that they served as "willing executioners" rather than gullible dupes of Hitler and his regime.

      The people that talk the most about "pre-truamatic syndrome" etc... are mostly Jew-hobbiests, not any serious or informed people, Jewish and not-Jewish.

      Antisemitism, like any other idea, should be studied as much as possible in light of history not to suit the needs of Zionists or anti-Zionisists. Its impossible to remove presentism and politics form any history but we should, I think, try.

    • Joe --

      Do you believe that Jews believing (in various ways) that they are God's Chosen just represents another religious choice (theirs is the right one) or is that somehow distinct, and a form of prejudice against non-Jews?

  • 'If we don't take out Iran,' it will reenact the Holocaust in US and Israel -- Steven Emerson to Times Square rally
    • Giles-

      "communists" that is Leninists, Stalinists, Maoists and Kim Juche-ists etc... have done there fair share in fact more than to conflate communism with totalitarianism and to vilify the system they purported to represent.

  • There are 326,000 children near Tel Aviv who won't be hearing Caetano Veloso
    • Jon S,

      Shmuel is exactly right.

      Remember the old "if only the Palestinians had a Gandhi..?"

      Well now they do have a Gandhi strategy as Gandhi was the original BDS man.

      You can oppose it but mocking it is beyond crass and highly revealing.

  • Press can't justify red carpet for Oren tract and blackout for Blumenthal's 'definitive account' of Gaza
    • But unverified is not just saying Jews where Zionists would do all the work needed.

      Unverified is making claims about -THE Jews- which especially given that he is doing so on Mondoweiss about Max Blumenthal is incoherent and seems indeed like “a rant from a questionable person.”

  • 'We should seize it' -- Obama announces Iran deal as 'new direction' for the Middle East
    • That would be my exact math.

      Included in there in the "doing the right thing" category probably for Obama is rebalancing the historic power centres of the Islamic world and -- somehow trying to squeeze Israel as a permanent player. Quite the opposite of helping the Iranian regime wipe Israel off the map etc...

    • ... that a -stable- larger ME...

    • Obama, imo, along with other Democrats, is actually trying to reshape Israel into a country that can be supported (and protected) in this new millennium. Supported without the wrath of more progressive Democrats, and which (at least superficially) conforms more generally to American ideals, and increased expectations for the Middle East.

      I am not saying this is realistic or possible but I am sure that it is why Obama is generally confused and more than mildly p.o'd that people think he is trying to harm Israel. He does see himself as the tough intervener, the good friend who sticks with his buddy when when he's acting up but lays down firm rules of engagement.

      The deal itself was constructed (brilliantly or naively we will see) with Israel (and Saudi) stability in mind, with the idea that a larger ME (including Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan) is good for everyone, especially our two most important allies.

      Hillary, btw, is perfectly happy with 20th century whatever, whenever.

    • The current Israeli government is like a drug addict relative refusing an intervention (because everything is not just ok but great, in fact never been better.).

      Obama intervened.

      And/but this deal does not harm Israel, it helps Israel become a more legitimate state with more normalised relations.

      I think that may not have dawned on some celebrants here and widely.

  • Michael Oren misrepresents 1971 synagogue bombing that changed his life
    • Lastly, unless you want to continue, I actually find your original statement (which I did not read right away) about the distinguishing between, say, you and a woman suffering in a society where FGM is the norm and then you and a man in your own society, to be well phrased and imo correct.

      White Jews in the US in the 1970's compared to other white Americans, especially otherEuropean immigrants, no great difference.

      My conversation with Keith has been way beyond that delimitation.

    • tree-- do you think I need to tell Hophmi and other Zionists that I think Zionism is a moral disaster in order to have more leverage to tell MW comment section Jew hobbyists that I think they are hypocrites and double-standard bearers.

      I dont think so.

      Bornajoo has never come close to Keith in terms of denying the reality of anti-Semitism in Europe before the war, or minimising it so that it has no meaning. I have never seen bornajoo with Jew lists or rants about Jewish power. When he or she does, if I am around and have time, I would say something.

      That said, I don't doubt I treat a person who identifies themselves as a woman or Chinese or Muslim on issues which relate to those groups differently than someone who identifies themselves and not a woman, Chinese or Muslim. I know from what he has written that bornajoo has many experiences, positive and negative, with Jews and Judaism and that he (I think he mentioned a kippah once so he) has actually studied Judaism. I assume from the way he writes that Keith with his Shahak and Jew lists is like the Islamophobe who knows a couple of weak hadith, has read ibn Ishak, knows the word "taqquia" and yet styles themselves an expert on Islam.

      PS I brought up my relatives and the ensatzgruppen to point out that one can indeed talk about past wrongs without kvetching or implying they are worse than other crimes. I am genuinely sorry about your great-great grandmother and I would be offended anyone who made a statement like "people who descended from people who starved to death are really hungry for sympathy" which I find the very rude formulation of Jews "kvetching" about antisemitism to be akin. At best rude. Especially if I styled myself a "human rights activist."

    • No comparison between blacks and Jews in American history. The suffering of African Americans could only be compared to Natives certainly not any European group.
      Keith has stated repeatedly that Jewish identity is warped because it focuses on oppression. I am pointing out that other groups too incorporate a history of oppression into their identity and it does nit have to be a unhealthy thing in general. I suggested that in groups he might be more sympathetic with this could be seen as an element of strength. More importantly I am pointing out that the kind of calls for context on this thread are decried when used to minimize the suffering of sympathetic victims.

    • No need for straw. Keith made a few statement, Annie agreed with one, and I replied to both.

    • I hope you are right. I think it is definitely the majority but I was talking to someone who argues that anti-semitism, in the larger context was not such a big deal.

    • To a very small extent and nothing in comparison to African Americans.

      I am talking to Keith who consistently denies antisemitism, even in Europe, and who contextualises it in a way that is exactly how people who want to diminish Palestinian suffering do it.

      My point is that overcoming oppression does not have to be a negative identity trait as Keith implies in the case of Jews, a group he is clearly not sympathetic with.

      Annie is very deservedly slammed here as someone would be if they said feminists are always "bitching" about sexism etc...

      I disagree with just about everything Hopmi writes so no chance of that.

    • Talk to Keith.

    • Keith --

      When people compare the total deaths of Palestinians in the entire conflict to the deaths of Syrians in the last few years, when people say passing through a checkpoint is nothing compared to being hanged for being gay in Iran or thrown off of a building by ISIS, they are contextualising for the purpose of minimising.

      This is exactly the way you think reasonable people should do with claims of so-called antisemtisim (which you barely admit ever existed anywhere, even in Europe from the Middle Ages to the Reformation).

      My relatives were shot in a town square for the crime of being Jewish. That makes me really sad and to relate that as a fact of history in no way minimises the crimes committed by Japan against Asian civilians or by the Nazis against others. Its not kvetching to know and relate and even in some senses take past oppression into ones identity.

      Overcoming oppression is the tradition of African Americans and the sumud tradition of Palestinians. If you admire the group its "We Shall Overcome" and if you don't as in the case of you and Annie, its kvetching.

      Zionism might have been the worst possible solution but the problem of antisemitism was real.

    • Mooser--

      Not you in specific. I have very little problem with anything you write and with most of what you seem (though cryptic moments) to believe.

      My only beef with you is when you used to (much less now thanks) purposely misread what I was clearly saying so that you could launch some silly zinger. I also find it annoying when you carry your jokes over threads and expect even authors above the byline to be in on your inside humour, as if that is the main purpose of the comment section.

      Otherwise, were good.

    • Keith -- I wonder how many Jews you know or have talked to or what books you have read from within the Jewish tradition. My guess is very few and very few.

    • Really Keith and Annie --

      So when people contextualise Israeli oppression of Palestinians by citing the context of the Middle East, what do you call that?

      I think you call it Hasbara.

      Annie I find the use of kvetching and anti-Semitism to be despicable (and yes there is much exaggerated anti-semitism in Zionist rhetoric. I don't expect much from Keith but from you I find that respectfully disappointing.

    • Bornajoo, I actually don't disagree with anything you have written here.

      But, I stand by the observation that generally this comment section champions with anti-semitism the very kind of contextualisation, mitigation and rationalisation that would be spotted on a hair trigger were it aimed at reducing concern about Islamophibia or anti-Palestinian behaviour and attitudes.

    • Not sure why my edit function does not work so I'll amend here:

      Being a white, Jew, especially male, especially on the East Coast, by the 1970's was a category more of privilege than disadvantage...

    • I think its fairly clear that by the 1970's being Jewish in America was more an advantage than a disadvantage and most Jews of the time were living lives like Phils, not what Oren claims.

      But seriously, those who are not Jewish commenting on how the never noticed any anti-semitism (and therefore in conclusion, there was none) this is very much like men not noticing sexism and #alllivesmatter because whats all this droning on about racism.

      Secondly, I'm amazed at how when it comes to Jews here, context and mitigation become so important.

      Every act of prejudice and discrimination (and occupation and expulsion) has a context and in some way can be seen as rational in a historical context. So what.

  • I believe I can make a difference in my lifetime
    • RoHa is right DS.

      Not all of what you say is untrue but its a giant smoke-screen with little application to the real world as-it-is.

      Israel (especially the current government) has no intentions of giving an inch. There have been multiple opportunities to create safety with a cynical nod towards justice. No nod.

  • Activists call on Oprah Winfrey to distance herself from Leviev over human rights abuses
  • 'A traumatized society is dangerous'
    • Native Americans could not vote regularly and wearily until The Snyder Act of --- 1924.

      Oklahoma and Indiana, and other "Indian Territories" were precisely Bantu-stans until those lands were desired by new influxes of Europeans.

      You say you read American history (and academic books not websites no less) but then you say that the US enfranchised and did not push out the native or kill Natives but this is exactly what the US did. I think you should add a biography of Andrew Jackson to your reading list.

      Australia repopulated natives to Aboriginal only reserves from the outset. You're simply wrong on British policy which was explicitly white-only for almost all of its history and
      independent Australia as well.

      I agree with your statement that Australians now are far more reflective of their history than Israelis and imo United States Americans, but in fact your country had white-only and boarding school/white adoption reservation policies until the 19-70s and still has restrictions on Aboriginal communities on reservations.

      You say with great authority:

      "I do understand the American use of reservations, but as an Australian, I assure you, the English had no such policy from 1788 until 1901 and when an Australian Government existed from 1901, neither did they."

      But in fact, here is how you could not be more wrong (In your governments own words on NSW). The pushing of natives off their land started at first contact and became formalised in the British period and sustained from 1901. Just look at the timeline:

      link to environment.nsw.gov.au

      And what you say about then and now is true. Israel is trying to make colonial moves in a post-colonial time. Very true indeed.

    • US- Native history is precisely the history of disenfranchising and pushing natives into bantu-stans and killing where they resisted. and not to know that means not really knowing anything about the subject frankly.

    • Wait, what??
      You say below you have read American history but your post could not be more riddled with errors.

      Yes, the US disenfranchised Natives repeatedly both as individuals and as nations, from the 17th Century.

      Your distinction between intentions and results is irrelevant and from Bacons Rebellion, King Phillips War on the intentions were actually to drive them out and subdue them.

      When were Indians a minority? By what century did Indians become a minority? After how long after contact did indians become a minority?

      Finally WHAT?? Which American history did you read? Trail of Tears mean anything to you?
      Here is a hint The Cherokee, famous in Western movies, were a South Eastern tribe originally.

      "Neither did the US, or for that matter, other colonisers like Australia, Canada, New Zealand push their indigenous into concentration camps and bantustans and kill them if they resisted, as Israel does. "

      The US pioneered the reservation system. And yes Australia and Canada and New Zealand did the same.

      Spend some time here for all of this including essays about how Nazi's admired the US job on Natives.

      link to indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com

  • 'Obama coffee' is black and weak -- racist tweet from wife of Israel's vice premier
    • echi--

      In my experience most white American Jews have the same range of ideas about race as non-Jews -- if not slightly more liberal (at least since the 1960's), but whatever the thinking privately would never say such a stupid thing on Twitter. The general (polite and public society) American environment is far advanced from this kind of thing and I think the point of the reaction is to show again the difference between the US and Israel however much there is assumed to be no daylight.

      Now, are American Jews more liberal on Palestinians? Of course not, Pogressive Except Palestine is a real thing.

    • Israel is indeed diverse and the divide is not black and white its Jewish and not-Jewish.
      But its clear which Jews are in charge politically and socially: white Jews from Europe and the US. There is a thought bubble out of which this kind of "innocent" banter comes and the point being made, correctly, is there is much daylight between white American Jews and white Israelis in attitudes about race.

  • Charleston: Do Black and Palestinian lives matter?
    • Keith--

      I disagree that whether Ellis should make clear he is talking about white Jews and black relations hinges on whether black Jews have any power in the American Jewish community. In fact, that black Jews are indeed marginalised (out of existence even here) and a small minority within American Jews is precisely why someone who is anti-racist should not engage in a conceptually racist statement which leads to actual racist events -- such as being mistaken for the help (because after all Jews are white, right?) If Marc Ellis is going to speak as an informed anti-racist about Jewish issues, he should know this.

      Keith -- I don't think victim and privilege is relevant here either. This is clearly your issue not mine. I have stated elsewhere repeatedly that I know as well as you (if not better) how privileged American Jews are, though there was some discrimination towards Jews up until about the late 1950s in some areas such as education and housing, summer resorts etc... This is not surprising because while anti-Semitism was endemic to Europe from the Middle Ages through the Enlightenment - it was not innate or essential to European culture.

      I was privileged, my relatives who were shot by the einsatzgruppen in the ravine outside Stari-Sambor, not so privileged. My African American relatives were both victims and over-coming of victimhood. All told, they did comparatively well having left the South earlier than the great migrations. But I don't want to bore people here with my life story.

    • .... and all he has to do is write "white American Jews" one time at the beginning of his essay.

    • Mock away Mooser, its what your good at and the return you want on your investment of what 20 - 30 hours per week here? (for humanity's benefit of course).

      Ellis, on the other hand, is actually trying to make a positive and informed statement about something other than his own ego chatter, so I thought he would be receptive to something pretty much every Jew of color thinks when they hear someone talk about black Jewish relations as if they are separate and distinct categories.

      It actually does matter that someone writing from an anti-racist point of view not write something that is conceptually racist. Jews = white is both untrue (black lives certainly matter to black Jews and who exist in the US, in Nigeria, South Africa, Israel). Moreover, using Jew as a synonym for white is the reason why these really annoying things happen to those of us who share African American identity and the Jewish religion/culture/heritage.

      link to blavity.com

    • Thanks, its important work you do generally and here in specific.

      One request is not to use black and Jewish as necessarily distinct.

      You mean white Jews and/or ashkenazic Jews and African-Americans, but you should say so, at least once at the outset, since we Jews do come in other colours.

  • 'NYT's public editor slams anti-Irish bigotry in news story on Berkeley balcony deaths
    • I think Adelson will spin anything into his agenda but how does saying Irish kids beat him up mean being anti-Irish.

      Irish kids threw stones at my dad and called him a Christ-killer in 1950's Philadelphia.

      He never raised me to dislike Irish people as a category which would have never taken anyway since there were so many kind Irish people in our lives growing up.

      I do remember Irish jokes among some of my cousins, but I don't think Irish are a particular target of Jewish anti-goyish feeling. Not at least like Eastern Europeans.

    • You think there were no Jewish American war heroes?

  • Rivlin to announce 'joint Israeli society' -- and try to curb Palestinian house demolitions
    • "Something that the founders of zionism should have focussed on from the outset, which is protecting the rights of Jews as a viable and vibrant minority in any country they happen to be living in."

      Amen. That should have been the goal and, I believe, still can and should be the goal for all people of good will.

  • In the propaganda war, Israel will stop at nothing
    • ckg --

      Thanks. Here is an argument against either.
      link to time.com
      I think you make a good point above, intent matters a lot, especially with terms like Oriental or Colored that become dated.

    • Annie --

      link to en.wikipedia.org

      In part because that term rather than the proper transgendered is associated with a variety of porn, a fetish, a kink rather than an identity. Also, as other with some other contractions it connotes derision.

      It is used like "the n-word" or queer by some inside the community, supposedly in endearment, but I am pretty sure thats not the place Scott is coming from.

    • "trannys" is a derogatory slur and your hope is a weird one if you are a critic of Israel as promoting the areas where it is comparatively tolerant and like the US does help cover up the ways it is discriminatory and nothing like the US.

  • What I Was Told: Arabs hate Jews
    • RoHa,

      Yes -if- it is in the interest of the truth. All history writing to some extent is revisionism.

      No, I don't believe The Jews are the authors of Jewish misery. Why don't I believe that is not something I can answer briefly, because I do think it is a fair historical question however obnoxious and similar to Golda Meir's belief that Palestinian mothers murder their own children because they hate the Jews so much.

      I do believe this happens to be the preferred claim of all racists about the group they most dislike. (which of course does not invalidate it in itself).

      How about you?

    • Keith --

      You quote the wiki page on Shahak. I read that too, as well as the negative quotes.

      He is not considered an unblemished scholar among scholars of Judaism. He is a popular source for people who have qualms with Judaism. He is a hero to people like you much as ex-Mulsims are to those who need an essentially bad Islam.

      The Jews of America are extraordinarily privileged.

      Things changed because there is nothing essential about anti-Semitism. Not among Europeans nor among Arabs. I have never argued that, despite your insistence that I am arguing that.

      However, unfortunately, Jews in Europe experienced experienced segregation, lynching and irrational accusations for most of their history there. If you want to dispute that, fine but its you that is making myths.

      As for me being tribal or Zionist. No. I am a humanist above any of my ethnic or religious associations and I completely reject all aspects of the conquest of Palestine by a Jewish State. In fact, Jewish nationalism appals me probably mores because I identify as Jewish.

      But I also dislike Jew-hobbiests and historical revisionists who seek to minimise the suffering of people, and Jews did suffer terribly in Europe because they were Jews, culminating in the Shoah.

      The racism that ruled it was in good measure irrational, not because Europeans are innately racist anymore than they are sexist or Islamophobic though those are also endemic in European history.

      Me being a scholar or not hardly depends on me footnoting my observations about what you are up to. And if you want to be a scholar of Judaism and Jewish culture, you're going to need more than Shahak.

    • Mooser -

      "wouldn’t “outward signs of being Jewish” almost inevitably be taken as outward signs of being Zionist, and extremely so, and therefore, provocative to a lot of people? So yes, you might have trouble walking around in a kippah sneering at the natives, yes. "

      No one said anything about sneering at the natives.

      I mean walking around with a kippah or star of David. Or for that matter a hijab. I assume you agree that someone who attacks a Muslim woman with a headscarf doesn't get afforded mitigating context because of horrible things some Muslims have down elsewhere in the name of Islam, under flags with Muslim symbols.

    • eljay, nice to see you as always.

      RoHa, in this case of course there is some truth to what Shahak says about Jewish perceptions of non-Jews (though he also outright lied about a Jew's responsibility to break the sabbath in order to save Jew or non-Jew - It is the responsibility to save a life above all other commandments). I admire the young Sikh man who recently used his turban to stop the bleeding of a young boy. What a beautiful act of humanity.

      And revisionism does not have to be bad even when about touchy subjects.
      I do want to know the accurate numbers of Jews murdered in the Shoah or the number of Africans transported in the Trade . As a matter of history, not as ammo with which to fight for one's politics. So, first the facts as best they can be determined and then its important to ask what is the intent of the revisionist?

      The kind of revisionism Keith is partial to, seems to me akin to writing a history of America in which one showed all the terrible things that black people have said about whites from David Walker to Nat Turner through to Malcom X and then casting slavery and Jim Crow as the logical consequence of all that hate. It would be possible to throw in the brutality of the various slave revolts to show that Black Codes were rational, and even the cases where blacks owned whites and other blacks to make th point that it really wasn't about race and that racism is overstated. Or, at least race relations in the US was a struggle between two equal forces each trying to harm the other (that phrasing remind you of anything?). Jewish communities in Europe were ghettoised, forbidden from trades, brought up on witchcraft charges, lynched and assaulted repeatedly. I imagine in that climate the ancient texts about Jews and non-Jews began to fuel some hostile interpretations of the contemporary situation. Other rabbis throughout, even in those times, have argued that one cannot update the ancient texts to contemporary gentiles.

    • The Farrakhan reference is not a cheap shot. Im not saying you even know his speaches or agree with him. I actually do agree with him on some issues. (not this one).

      If you read his speeches about Jews you will see he does, as I suggest, what I perceive you as doing, saying that suspicion of Jews is in fact historically quite rational, the Jews are not victims and in fact instigators of their own misfortunes. That people criticise the Germans for what they did to the Jews but no one criticises the Jews for what they (in his allegation) did to Germany.

      This is 101 revisionism and the purpose goes way beyond muting the exaggerations of Zionists.

      By the way the phrase "you Zionists" towards me is simply incorrect. I don't believe or support any kind of political Zionism. The only kind of Zionism I find acceptable morally or intellectually is cultural Zionism, meaning if Jews want to speak Hebrew, live in (a democratic) Israel/Palestine. I also don't object to concepts of transhistorical and cross board nationhood. Not for the Muslim Ummah not for PanAfricans and not for Jews who want to think of themselves that way.

    • Keith,

      “Two central dogmas underpin the Holocaust framework: (1) The Holocaust marks a categorically unique historical event; (2) The Holocaust marks the climax of an irrational, eternal Gentile hatred of Jews.” (p41, “The Holocaust Industry,” Norman Finkelstein)

      About NF's quote. The slaughter of European Jewry is, like every historical event, unique with a specific set of variables. Genocide is not unique and WWII and its aftermath saw several. The conquest of the New Wold, the Belgian Congo, the Armenians before that. All with unique variables. Congo could never have happened without several hundred years of diminishing the humanity of black Africans. The ling pervasive, endemic (but not necessarily essential) denigration of black people allowed it not only to happen but to be largely ignored by history. More Chinese civilians died in WWII than Jews so not unique in that sense. However, part of the variables of the Jewish Holocaust were a long, long and irrational hatred of Jews.

    • Keith, do you have other sources about Judaism other than Shahak?
      You remind me of people with out any Arabic or training in Islam who can quote every scary hadith and have their wahhabi and ex-Muslim experts to back them up.

      Of course Zionists use antisemitism, real and imagined, to justify Jewish nationalism and a whatever-means-necessary approach. What does that have to do with trying to measure the extent to which it existed or not. It did exist, with some interruptions, as a pervasive trend in European history. Yes, Mooser is right that there is a context of religious wars that cannot be ignored. Brutality towards and hatred for Jews is exceptional even in that context.

      "TOKYOBK- “It does not surprise me at all that your source on Judaism is Israel Shahak. His purpose is precisely what I said you were doing as well as to collapse Judaism and Zionism into one essential identity.”

      KEITH: Wrong! He maintains that Zionism is essentially a throwback to Classical Judaism, an attempt to nullify the enlightenment. Remember, Shahak was an Israeli writing about the Orthodox Judaism of Israel, not American Reform Judaism."

      I don't see any useful distinction here. He sees them as a continuous expression of an essential Judaism.

      You have a beef with the organised Jewish community. I share some of that beef. Where we part ways is that I don't think Zionist exaggerations need a counterweight of minimisation.

    • airman -- endemic is an appropriate word to describe the pervasive trend of anti-semitism in Europe. It is not genetic and I made no such implication.

      Keith, I do not believe that Europeans or anyone else is intrinsically anything. I think the evidence is quite clear that irrational beliefs about super/sub human Jews were a normal part of European thought for much of its history.

      Classical Judaism believes, like classical Christianity and Islam, that the world can be divided into groups and each groups has its virtues and defaults in a hierarchy with (surprise) that group as the most righteous and worthy.

      I believe in the power dynamic of Europe was such for most of its history that what Muslims and Jews (when they weren't simply expelled) believed about the dominant society was of less political and social consequence than what society thought of them.

      Keith "My purpose is to point out that much of the Jewish version of never ending anti-Semitism is myth-history, not grounded in UNBIASED historical reality. "

      So, who has argued that there was unending antisemitism? Every educated person nows that there were periods of tolerance and acceptance. Even before Europe the Exodus and Purim stories are predicated on Jews sometimes rising to great heights of power.

      It does not surprise me at all that your source on Judaism is Israel Shahak. His purpose is precisely what I said you were doing as well as to collapse Judaism and Zionism into one essential identity.

      Sure the power dynamic you describe often happened and stoked anti-Jewish resentment. Jews as a group were not elites in Europe but individual Jews did wield great power at times.

      Farrakhan also said that the Holocaust was a crime and I never implied you don't think so as well. But what he further said is what you tend to imply (imo). That the Jews gave as good as they got, and were all told no victims, that antisemitism is in fact an anti-Gentile canard more than a historical occurrence and that this anti-Gentile bigotry explains "antisemitism"

      Is this not what you believe?

    • Thanks for sharing your thoughts and the video, Bornajoo.

    • Bornajoo,

      Its amazing to think that Baghdad was once as "Jewish" as Manhattan, except mores in that the Jews of Iraq had been there for a thousand years not a few hundred.

      I respect everything you are saying.

      But, do you/would you wear a Kippah on the streets of any European city? Do your cousins have any outward signs of being Jewish? Perhaps that is why they experience something you may not.

    • My "True" was for Annie's Comment.

    • Keith,

      So do you believe that pogroms and lynchings of Jews endemic in European history (including for supposedly baking goyish blood in to Matzah) were rational?

      Of course the Holocaust is the result of history. All such events are.

      It seems your purpose is to reduce all anti-semitism to the logical result of separation and anti-Goyish bias.

      This is the Farrakhan thesis: No one ever asks what the Jews did to Germany.

    • I thought RobertHeneyEller's comments were especially thoughtful too.

      But Bornajoo, do you think Zionists exploit or invent anti-semitism? I think most people here assume mostly the second.

    • Annie-

      Why sad?

      Is on national TV exposing, not promoting, the kind of closed group think that keeps people inside, when there are no actual walls holding them in.

  • Sam Harris and the dangers of false atheism
    • India always comes to my mind when talking about a massive and tolerant Islamic community as well but, in fact, there have been Indian Muslims who support and have fought for ISIS.

      It does not negate the larger critique of Harris, New Atheism or that everything is ultimately political (I tend to agree with that) but a simple google will show you support for ISIS in Tamil and also stories of lone Indian fighters, as well as fundraising from India. India has a recent attraction among younger people to Wahhabi led by preachers such as Zaik Nakir and others.

      What is certainly true is that Harris et al excuse and endorse all kinds of irrationality within the sanctioned ideas of modern secularism whom also basically accept and prefer the current geo-political situation which they see as best for smashing religion (especially the supposedly most scary one).

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