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‘Little Jewboy’ moment highlights coming divorce between US Jews and Israel

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You’ve surely seen the coverage of the “Jewboy” insult aimed at the US ambassador to Israel by a former aide to the Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu. Aviv Bushinsky was speaking on television about Ambassador Daniel Shapiro’s criticism of Israeli settlements. “To put it bluntly, it was a statement typical of a little Jew boy,” Bushinsky said. What did Shapiro do wrong? Reuters:

Shapiro’s supposed misstep was to observe in a speech to a security conference that Israel applies the law differently to Israelis and Palestinians living in the West Bank. “There seem to be two standards…”

Shapiro was raised in Illinois but speaks Hebrew and studied at Israel’s Hebrew University. Yet his criticism is the most direct so far by an American official. Indeed it has led some to wonder whether the US is giving up on Israel.

The flap demonstrates an important sociological trend: American Jews, even mainstream ones indoctrinated to love Israel, are breaking more and more publicly with the Jewish state. The Netanyahu government is proving to be embarrassing to American Jews; they do not want to be associated with rightwing apartheid policies.

The Netanyahu documentary on PBS was very mild, but a shot across the bow. The divorce that we have long predicted on this site is now on the horizon; and in years to come this separation will yield an even bigger reward: mainstream American Jews will declare themselves anti-Zionist.

But let me put away the crystal ball and list the new evidence for the divorce.

Gary Rosenblatt of the Jewish Week

Gary Rosenblatt of the Jewish Week

First, Gary Rosenblatt is a hard-core Israel supporter. But in the Jewish Week ten days ago, he reveals that Jewish leaders say it’s getting impossible to sell Israel to young Jews:

American Jewish leaders confide that generating support for the Jewish state is becoming increasingly difficult these days — even within the Jewish community, and especially among younger people.
The hard fact is that Israel’s leadership is moving in a direction at odds with the next generation of Americans, including many Jews, who want to see greater efforts to resolve the Palestinian conflict and who put the onus for the impasse on Jerusalem. It is not only President Obama who feels that way… Whether or not it is fair, the strong perception today is that the Israeli government is moving further right, and intransigent, at a time when the rest of the world is fed up with the Israel-Palestinian impasse
And this political change will be licensed by fundraisers.
Federation executives worry privately that when the generation of major funders who vividly remember Israel’s struggle for statehood and the anguish of the 1967 and 1973 wars passes from the scene, raising substantial dollars for the Jewish state will be that much harder.

Next, and again in the Jewish press — this trend is not very visible in the American mainstream yet– Haaretz has a Q-and-A with an Israeli leader describing her frustrations in getting U.S. Jews “to engage and support” Israel. Liran Avisar Ben Horin is head of Masa, a pro-Israel group, and she says that US Reform Jews tell her, “I will never set foot in Israel.” Did you hear that?  Ben Horin:

When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did his “silence” stunt in the United Nations [last October], I thought to myself maybe he was complaining about the world. But we are really entering an era in which the young Jewish people in North America are partners in this silence….

Anger and disagreement isn’t that bad, because it comes from concern. I’m worried not about Iran but those who are silent. They’re checking out from our discussion. We must ask ourselves how it will look in 30 years. The traditional Jewish leadership is aging, the young leadership is depleted and silent – that’s the story in a nutshell.

About all the anti-Israel stuff and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement. They say to themselves, “Israel isn’t a brand I want to identify with, so I’ll just quit the discussion.” We haven’t been able to develop a sense of belonging. All the battles of Birthright, Masa and others come down to this fight…

I met Reform Jews who told me, “I will never set foot in Israel.”

I always tell them, “Come and be part of the story, help find a solution.” I invite them to participate in the largest enterprise of the Jewish people.

[Once] they would have turned to youth movements as part of the Zionist discourse. Today, we tell them it will improve their résumé. They come here for half a year or a year, and intern at Google, Check Point, Waze, and in startups too.

Another item from Haaretz. Kathleen Peratis is a liberal Zionist, a former J Street board member who has been very clear-eyed about the occupation. In Haaretz, she authors a piece that is highly favorable to the BDS movement (boycott, divestment and sanctions) because it is the only thing that puts pressure on Israel. Her piece invokes an American civil rights struggle as a guide to Jewish response to Israel:

Progressive American Jews are generally not reluctant to criticize the occupation, but few in the “mainstream Jewish community” (those who get invited to the White House Hanukkah party) will advocate serious measures to hold anyone accountable. At the HaaretzQ conference in New York in December, for example, not a single Jewish speaker advocated any kind of BDS. A few vaguely referred to putting “pressure” on Israel (Colette Avital, former Israeli consul general to New York City; and Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum) or to making sure there were “consequences” (Lara Friedman, legislative director Americans For Peace Now), but no one got too specific. BDS is high treif and they know it. Calling for it explicitly would be illegal in Israel and the kiss of death in America.

Too many progressive Jews think criticizing Israeli policies on the occupation is enough, but it’s not working. Challenging settler businesses to shut up shop is the new frontier for BDS……While the Jewish world dithers, the world is moving on, developing more consequential tools to hold accountable those who commit or are complicit in occupation-related abuses…

Does ending the abuse of Palestinian rights need to wait for the Israeli political elite to be convinced to change government policy?

As we have just celebrated Martin Luther King Day and Shabbat Tzedek, who thinks Palestinians and the rest of us should put justice on hold?

Right: if not now, when?

Next, even Todd Gitlin sees the writing on the wall. A religious liberal Zionist who is dedicated to opposing the BDS movement, Gitlin nonetheless makes an important concession in his latest assault on BDS in Tablet. He says that filmmaker Bruce Robbins of Columbia  is “right” about the growing international appeal of BDS. And not only that, Israel is undermining its “right to exist.”

He’s right, too, if he means that, outside Israel, belief in the nation’s right to exist has been undermined by Israel’s dreadful national policies and flagrantly illiberal direction.

Questioning Israel’s “right to exist” used to be a radical position. No more.

Again outside the US mainstream: Al Jazeera has published a piece focusing on several Jewish critics of Israel, including Brant Rosen, Tami Gold, and Henry Herskovitz. The piece cites the disquiet inside the Jewish community over Israel.

A study released in 2013 by the Jewish Council on Public Affairs found that almost half of the rabbis surveyed refrained in the preceding three years from publicly expressing their views on Israel. Nearly 40 percent of them sometimes or often avoided expressing “true feelings about Israel and its conflict with the Palestinians” for fear of offending their listeners or those around them, according to the study, entitled Reluctant or Repressed? Aversion to Expressing Views on Israel Among American Rabbis.

Tami Gold, documentary film maker

Tami Gold, documentary film maker

The article contains a crushing anecdote, about a conflict within filmmaker Tami Gold’s family on the right way to memorialize her late mother in 2012:

Her uncle arrived and approached Gold to give her an envelope. It contained a formal letter acknowledging that he had donated money in the name of her mother to the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces, a New York-based group that channels donations to the Israel Defense Forces.

“I was honouring my sister,” Raymond Rickman, the uncle, said of his action.

But for Gold, 66, that was a “horrible” gesture.

“My sister wrote a handwritten letter and sent it to him, saying what he did was a violation of my mother’s spirit and commitment in life, and that he sabotaged our memorial for my mother,” she said.”It is these kinds of grotesque atrocities against the Palestinian people that motivates me to speak out as a Jew,” she said.

Finally, there is this oblique report from England that suggests the brand is toxic all over.

The national pro-Israel rally supported by all major communal organisations has been cancelled because the venue has pulled out.

The “Say No To Terror: Stand With Israel” event was due to take place in Manchester’s Sheridan Suite function rooms on January 31, with around 2,000 people expected to attend.

But it will now happen in March at another location, after the venue in the north-east of the city decided against hosting the event.

Things are changing fast. Gosh when will the U.S. press catch up? We are pleased to be in the thick of this movement, as advocates and journalists, and pleased to see statements that were heretical a couple years ago come into the mainstream. Israel has no right to exist? Reform Jews refuse to set foot in Israel? Here is another prediction. This crisis will not end until American Jews declare, Zionism is racism. And one day they will.

Thanks to Dorothy Zellner, Max Blumenthal, Annie Robbins and Terry Weber.

Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is senior editor of and founded the site in 2005-06.

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46 Responses

  1. amigo on January 21, 2016, 12:23 pm

    I am traveling to Dublin on Friday 22nd to see Gideon Levy give a lecture at the Abbey Theater.I will try to pass on this article to him–somehow.It should help to raise his spirits.It certainly did raise mine.

  2. David Doppler on January 21, 2016, 1:15 pm

    I look forward to a debate question that puts the issue out there bluntly – both in the primaries and in general election. If Hillary is to win, let her explain her no-daylight, BFF-with-Bibi-positions when Netanyahu, Dermer, Bennett, Hotovely, etc., are the right-wingnuts she’s cuddling up to. Let Bernie explain whether he’s a Zionist, politically, and, if so, what does that mean to him?

    I think Trump’s right-wing red meat comments about excluding Muslims (“until we figure out what’s going on over there”) then in front of the Republic Jewish Coalition “I don’t know if the Israelis want peace [boos] I don’t KNOW that” and “I understand you want a candidate you can own and that’s not me, and I respect that,” suggest he may have some zinger-tweets and taunts to strip away hypocrisy, just as he did when Hillary tried to play the sexist card.

  3. gingershot on January 21, 2016, 1:32 pm

    Shaprio has just experienced the phenomenon of getting ‘Indyked’, which is similar to getting ‘Fisked*’ but much deeper, and by members of one’s own tribe, rather than by strangers as was the case with Robert Fisk

    It’s the traditional shunning but with a lot more attitude and rigor

    The ritual was eponymously named for Martin Indyk, after he complained of the famous brutalization he experienced after blaming Israel/Netanyahu for the failure of the Peace Talks during the last gasp with John Kerry a year or so ago.

    The list of ‘Indykees’ is rapidly growing, Gladstone experienced it as well, Hillary is going to get the treatment soon too as she desperately tries to cut her bondage cords from her moribund AIPAC/Saban horse that the Israeli Lobby/Jewish Lobby strapped her too

    *coined by Neocons/Pro-Israelis after Robert Fisk (veteran ME reporter/The Independent) was beat up by Afghan refugees on the AfPak border he was reporting on, much to the delight of the Pro-Israel crowd

    • annie on January 21, 2016, 1:57 pm

      Hillary is going to get the treatment soon too as she desperately tries to cut her bondage cords from her moribund AIPAC/Saban horse that the Israeli Lobby/Jewish Lobby

      ginger, do tell! i have not heard a peep about hillary making any attempts (much less ‘desperate’ attempts) to severe cords w/saban or aipac or anything. is this wishful thinking or is there a source? if so, please link.

      • on January 22, 2016, 7:01 am

        I very much doubt it, she’s in too deep to pull out now, especially in this stage of her career. Without Saban or AIPAC, she has no real backers that need her to win the presidency in order to achieve their goals, especially in today’s political climate that is screaming for a candidate like Bernie. It’s all or bust for Hillary, and based on various reports on the ground, it’s most likely going to be bust. The revolution is coming, and Bernies our man.

    • DavidDaoud on January 22, 2016, 1:27 pm

      Who cares about J.B.? Why did you post this?

      • W.Jones on January 22, 2016, 11:44 pm

        Because I can’t remember hearing the epithet before. It sounded strange to me. So I went online to see if it had ever been used. Is it something you heard before?

        I was old once that I looked like a “little English boy”, although I am probably only about half or so English.

  4. Emory Riddle on January 21, 2016, 2:00 pm

    The Zionists are deeply embedded into all the power centers of America. Media, finance, funding of politicians, government, propaganda (Hollywood).

    They see no difference between American Jews and Israeli Jews.

    While I would love to be hopeful about America getting out from under their power/influence in the near future, I’m not.

    Not one mainstream media outlet, not one politician, and very few celebrities will even acknowledge their power in our system never mind challenge it.

    I suspect they will not be confronted until they have caused such horrific damage to the USA (as they have already done to the ME) that the system falls.

    • JWalters on January 21, 2016, 5:10 pm

      “Not one mainstream media outlet, not one politician, and very few celebrities will even acknowledge their power in our system never mind challenge it.”

      Very true. It seems to me, though, that there are many who are very ready to go there as soon as they know they won’t be immediately fired. So when the dam breaks, things could change rapidly.

  5. on January 21, 2016, 4:12 pm

    Here we go again. Phil assuring the gentiles the cavalry is on the way.

    Sounds more like the Carpathia to me.

    “The flap demonstrates an important sociological trend: American Jews, even mainstream ones indoctrinated to love Israel, are breaking more and more publicly with the Jewish state.”

    How good of them.

    “The Netanyahu documentary on PBS was very mild, but a shot across the bow. ”

    Nothing, in other words.

    “This crisis will not end until American Jews declare, Zionism is racism. And one day they will. ”

    So the rest of America (the, uh, ninety-eight percent) can just wait?

    I admire much of the work and am grateful for the information on MW. But that an ostensibly anti-bigotry site can be so elitist — without seeming to have any awareness of that — gives new definition, and breadth, to Jewish exceptionalism.

    • annie on January 21, 2016, 4:43 pm

      broadside, i wouldn’t characterize this as “assuring the gentiles the cavalry is on the way.” however, i was a tad dismayed phil saw this as “a divorce between US jews and Israel” — as if shapiro is the representative of US jews, because he isn’t. frankly i think this was big moment myself, but i thought it was about me too. i do think it represents a looming division between the US and israel. the comment was a big FU to the government, shapiro represents the gov and i’m sure he didn’t make those statements ‘as a jew’ vs, as our ambassador.

      but, as long as our gov and media like the nyt keep exclusively appointing jews to represent them at the exclusion and detriment of the rest of us, then it perpetuates this illusion the relationship between the US and israel doesn’t impact the rest of us or doesn’t belong to all of us. which is BS. but phil being jewish, i guess he still (primarily) sees it that way.

      • on January 21, 2016, 8:26 pm

        In Georgia (USA) there’s a radio show on NPR after Morning Edition called On Second Thought hosted by a Celeste Hedley, and she is very good, almost unique: an intelligent, curious radio host asking interesting guests the questions a reasonably intelligent and curious person would ask. Not NPR’s usual modus operandi.

        Today she had a show on foraging. Foraging in Georgia. And wouldn’t you know it, within a few seconds one of her guests mentioned foraging in Israel. True.

        Some years back during a presidential debate that included a faux audience the host, the dreadful Tom Brokaw, said, “We have time for one more question,” and, wouldn’t you know it, picked a guy from the audience who asked a question about Iran, which at that point hadn’t been sufficiently bashed.

        I don’t believe that guy happened to ask a question on Iran any more than I believe there just happened to be a guest on a show on foraging in Georgia that mentioned foraging in Israel. And that’s what we’re up against. I don’t belittle Gary Rosenblatt’s words in Jewish Week, nor what the other Jews Phil mentioned said — but they’re not telling anyone anything they don’t already know. It’s just appearing in print.

        The people who DON’T know is the issue, is the battlefield, and that’s where the Zionists — and in this case I think that is the proper word — have ALL the bases covered, from state houses to the Capital to Pennsylvania Avenue, to the guests that get to ask the questions during presidential debates, to an otherwise excellent radio program in Georgia.

        Carpathia is probably optimistic. Probably the ship has yet to be built that will come to the rescue of Palestinians.

    • JWalters on January 21, 2016, 5:04 pm

      It seems to me the crisis would indeed end if Jewish Americans publicly proclaimed Zionism as racism, because it would greatly facilitate criticism of Israel going mainstream. I suspect that’s Phil’s real point. But it’s also true that criticism of Israel may start going mainstream before that happens, pushed from the grassroots. It would be better for the Jewish American community to get out in front of this change, which is part of Mondoweiss’ mission.

    • Qualtrough on January 21, 2016, 11:55 pm

      The Carpathia eventually rescued a number of Titanic passengers. I think a more appropriate reference might be the S.S. Californian, whose captain did nothing to help despite the crew having seeing the Titanic’s distress rockets.

      • on January 22, 2016, 8:55 am

        Lot of controversy still on the Californian — interestingly, a liner named New York also had a part in the doomed ship — but it’s generally agreed the crew did not recognize those as distress rockets. Power in America, in government and media, has for years been very much aware of Palestinian distress rockets. Just this week Israel announced it would be stealing hundreds more acres West Bank farm land, it went unmentioned in the NY Times. Power in America simply couldn’t care less.

        Either way, though, you’re right. No rescue coming. One person, one president, could make the difference. That was Ralph Nader. It is not Clinton, it is not Trump, it is not Sanders.

  6. JWalters on January 21, 2016, 4:55 pm

    Thanks for this informative article on the sea change occurring.

    An American songwriter of Jewish heritage wrote in The times they are a’changing

    Come Senators, Congressman please heed the call
    Don’t stand in the doorway, don’t block up the hall.

  7. Ismail on January 21, 2016, 5:09 pm

    Here’s my question: many US Jews, younger ones especially, are rightly horrified by the overtaking of Israel’s political establishment by monsters and thugs. Fine. But what happens if “Zionism with a human face” returns to Israel? Livni, Shavit et al, all far more consoling to US Zionists despite their being more in line with the current crop of fascists running Israel than not on the most basic issues.

    Obama extends the wars against Muslim countries, prosecutes whistleblowers, is cozy with the financial establishment, yet b/c he’s a law professor and hip and intelligent, he gets a pass from liberals that they’d deny to the coarser, dumber Bush. This is not to say that there’s no difference between the last two presidents, only that their commitments to the deep structural military and financial requisites of the US establishment are very similar.

    In the same way, if the Israeli electorate were to sweep the current oafs from office in favor of “liberal Zionists” like Shavit, far cuddlier than the ex-bouncer from Belarus and the other ogres who populate the Netanyahu cabinet and Knesset, would that change the US Jewish disgust/disillusion the article cites?

    Of course, there’s no reason to believe that Livni or similar wolves in sheep’s clothing would make one particle of difference to the lives of Palestinians – same ridiculous commitment to the “peace process”, same double standards regarding Jews vs Palestinians in the WB, etc.

    The problem is Zionism, and I guess I fear that US Jews and US gentiles both would be placated by an Israeli government that proposed a gentler version.

    That is, are folks getting fed up with Zionism, or are they getting fed up with the barbaric yokels who are running the joint for now?

    • annie on January 21, 2016, 5:17 pm

      i don’t think a softer image would help at this juncture ismail because too many people are now aware of the states actions and policies. the policies would have to change, something that has been relatively consistent regardless of who’s in charge.

      for example, the whole peace process charade. i don’t see palestine entering into negotiations with israel putting a comprehensive proposal on the table prior to them starting. because what became apparent (w/livni too) during the last process was they would not talk borders. so what’s the point? palestinians were placated w/the 9 month delay for going to the UN, but once that 9 months was up they went there. the train has left the station. and i don’t see the EU going backwards, backing off their recent initiatives, unless they see policy change. new faces on old policies won’t cut it.

      • italian ex-pat on January 21, 2016, 8:28 pm

        Annie, I wish I could share your optimism, but I’m afraid Ismail’s view is more realistic.

        With a more likeable and diplomatic Israeli PM the current wave of disgust toward Israel’s brutal treatment of Palestinians would lose its momentum and we’d be back to the old con game of ‘peace negotiations’ going on in perpetuity, with the same results. I believe it’s Netanyahu’s arrogance and disrespect for our President that caused this sudden shift in the American public opinion, rather than a new-found sympathy for the Palestinians. True, this may not be the case in the EU, but since when have they taken a position contrary to the US’?

        In any case, the Israelis themselves, not just the government, would need to change, and my impression is that they are, if anything, getting even more racist and intolerant of the Palestinians occupying the land they believe is theirs. This is due, in no small part, to the ever increasing power of the religious ultra-right. It is said that people get the government they deserve; in the case of the Israelis, they get the government they – or at least their majority – WANT.

        And no, I don’ t think it’s the American Jewish community distancing itself from Israel that’s going to cause a seismic change in the I/P status quo. First of all, it ain’t gonna happen; AIPAC and its subsidiaries are going to see to that. It’s the rest of the American people who must say ‘enough is enough’ and demand an end to the financial and military aid, which is the main enabler of the illegal occupation. But given the fact that every administration since Truman’s has allowed itself to be blackmailed (what else can you call it?) by powers too great to defeat, I don’t see that happening, either.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on January 22, 2016, 4:44 am

        “Annie, I wish I could share your optimism, but I’m afraid Ismail’s view is more realistic”

        Have to say I agree completely.

        Last year, “liberal Zionists” were confidently predicting a victory for the ‘moderate’ Herzog, and couldn’t restrain their dismay when he lost. Not because they thought he was interested in justice for Palestinians (since when have they cared?) but because they thought he would provide the ‘fig leaf’ which would allow them to take ‘pride’ in Israel once again. That was why I was happy Netanyahu was reelected – with this thug on course to be the longest-serving PM in the country’s history, it made it much harder for the lib-zios to shrug him off as an aberration.

        However, if/when a more affable person is elected in Israel, we’ll be back to Square One. The same inane talk of ‘both sides’, the ‘peace process’, ‘painful sacrifices’, ‘no partner for peace’ and so on. That said, with Israeli politics lurching ever more to the extreme right – Netanyahu would now be considered a moderate in the Israeli context – the chances of a ‘moderate’ being elected are getting slimmer all the time. Israel is destroying itself from within, as many of us long predicted it would do.

      • eljay on January 22, 2016, 9:15 am

        Yup, Israel needs leaders who understand the value of shooting and crying.

  8. pabelmont on January 21, 2016, 7:12 pm

    I don’t feel good that young Jews are silent and DON’T CARE. I want them to care a lot and be very angry (echoes of Trump?).

    I just read a fine and short book, “The Fragility of Goodness: Why Bulgaria’s Jews Survived the Holocaust” by Tzvetan Todorov. It explains that the people of Bulgaria — legislators, lawyers, Bulgarian Orthodox Church leaders, and many ordinary people reacted against a law that prepared to send Bulgaria’s Jews to Auschwitz — and by these protests and reactions somehow prevailed and these Jews (sadly, not some others from Thrace and Macedonia) were saved. The book tells how the Bulgarians wanted to save their OWN reputations for decency (as well as to be decent) and risked German and official Bulgarian wrath to oppose the anti-Jewish law.

    Well, I’d like to see Jews of all ages protest Israel’s treatment of non-Jews (mostly but not entirely Palestinian Arabs). For me, silence and non-concern don’t cut it. Disinterest and impartiality are out. Strong concern and decency (is there at long last no decency here? so to speak) is what’s required.

    • niass2 on January 22, 2016, 12:18 am

      how, by not buying kedem juice. I did yell at my Congress persons staff and the senators staff (Warren and the calcified and increasingly clueless Markey) numerous times about the Iran deal and how they should vote. I assure you, they are not very smaht when u call its fascinating how clueless and unable to even discuss any issue their staff is……… As far as their staff is concerned, they probably think Iran is near Mexico and is part of an Ethanol problem. Think of Ed Markey as progressive being from Mass? Think again he voted for every war he could since I was in high school in1986 Israel is run by fanatics and so is the USA, if you think we the USA can help good luck I am all in but really who runs your country” Its Raytheon, if you weren’t aware. Israel is flattening itself like a pancake, so all u little jew boys don’t worry its almost all over now. netenyahu will be living with Chris and Sadaam Hussein in hell just like in South Park by February 23rd, 2017.

  9. JLewisDickerson on January 21, 2016, 7:55 pm

    RE: “You’ve surely seen the coverage of the “Jewboy” insult aimed at the US ambassador to Israel by a former aide to the Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu.” ~ Weiss

    MY COMMENT: Apparently this sort of thing has become pretty routine.*

    * SEE: “Attempts to Silence Critics of Israeli Policies As ‘Self-Hating Jews’ a Failing Strategy” | By Allan C. Brownfeld | Washington Report on Middle East Affairs | Nov. 2009 | Page 53

    [EXCERPTS] For some time, the Jewish establishment in the United States, Israel and other countries has attempted to silence Jewish critics of Israel as “self-hating Jews” in an effort to stifle discussion and debate—just as non-Jewish critics have been accused of “anti-Semitism.”

    Recently, it was reported that Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu denounced two top aides to President Barack Obama—Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod—as “self-hating Jews” for urging a policy calling for a freeze on Israeli settlements in the occupied territories.

    A July 9 story in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that Netanyahu used the epithet “self-hating Jews” to describe Axelrod and Emanuel, who are viewed by the Israeli government as the driving force behind Obama’s push to pressure Israel to freeze settlement activity. Only when the quote was picked up by American newspapers did Netanyahu’s spokesman, Mark Regev, issue a statement denying that the prime minister had used that term. . .

    . . . In its Aug. 14 issue, The Forward noted that there has been “a long tradition of targeting Jewish administration officials.”

    According to The Forward, “For Martin Indyk, former ambassador to Israel, it was the image of the late Cabinet minister Rehavam Ze’evi calling him ‘Yehudon’ — translated loosely to ‘Jew boy’ — that came to mind.” ” ‘I told him that the last time someone called me that was in school,’ said Indyk, who added that he had punched his tormentor in the face. Ze’evi replied with a repetitive taunt: ‘Yehudon, yehudon.’ This time it ended with no punching. Prodded by Israel’s chief rabbi, Ze’evi later went up to Indyk and apologized.”

    When Daniel Kurtzer, an Orthodox Jew, was U.S. ambassador to Israel, right-wing lawmaker Zvi Hendel referred to him from the Knesset podium as “that little Jew boy.” The same term was used when Kurtzer was part of former Secretary of State James Baker’s Middle East team, alongside two other Jewish officials, Dennis Ross and Aaron David Miller, during the administration of George H.W. Bush. “The reality is that it is more a statement about the person saying it than on those who are being called it,” said Kurtzer.

    Miller, as well as other former Jewish officials, said that after being attacked by Israelis, he received no backing from Jewish leaders at home. “I never had the feeling the organized Jewish community is willing to stand up against these things,” he said. . .


  10. Qualtrough on January 21, 2016, 11:58 pm

    I much prefer ‘self-hating’ Jews to the ‘other-hating’ Jews known as Zionists.

  11. niass2 on January 22, 2016, 12:08 am

    Your all running around in circles,…Good Morning Little Schoolgirl, I’m a little Jew boy too. Chicago New York Detroit and its all on the same street. A typical city involved in a typical daydream. hangit up and see what tomorrow brings. Dallas…. about whether Jews here will break from Israel. I am not attached to Israel. I follow Bob. Israel is more or less a despiccable me 2 fascist area, where they rule like the supreme Zionist racist morans that they are, andthey read backwards.. There are no connections between this household and Israel, just a realization that we are the same ethnic group as the criminals that control and govern Israel, and that people down the street like paying for it, by themselves and through taxes. And that our parents Love It, and can’t be told its wrong without them thinking we are attacking them. yet try talking to your Congress peoples staff about ANYTHING. How should Jews act? Like anyone else who realizes some far off place is run by fascists….condemn it,, boycott it,, flush it down the toilet like Rush limbaugh. You can put a picture of netanyahu in your toilet and poop on it, or use his face as a doormat and videotape yourself doing it and put it on YouTube and send it to both your Senators. Whatever works. Bernie is too busy mumbling and Hillary is an idiot, so were done. do whatever and send israel an anvil, kind of like we are doing to Hillary. Their language is great, we can just watch as they act like little jew boys, one and all. It sounds just like it is, completely unbelievably gross and yucky and perfect for people like them. “It” is a book. Obama will do nothing at all, he’s gone, and nothings gonna bring him back. He’s Gone. Any day now the whole thing will blow sky high, yet not in the winter. . wont be much longer…..soon.

    • Mooser on January 22, 2016, 1:16 pm

      “Good Morning Little Schoolgirl, I’m a little Jew boy too.”

      Thanks! Gotta keep those old lyrics current.

  12. yourstruly on January 22, 2016, 3:33 am

    At a time when Zionist Israel’s violence against Palestinians is stoking Antisemitism throughout the world, Jews who speak out against Israel are self-haters? Pure nonsense, since it is the Israeli perpetrators of said violence (along with their Jewish supporters elsewhere) who are the self-haters. After all it is their actions that endanger world Jewry, not the words or deeds of Jews who oppose them and Israel. Indeed, always being on the side of the oppressed, even (better, especially) when the oppressor happens to be Jewish, for many of us, goes to the essence of what it is to be a Jew.

    • MHughes976 on January 22, 2016, 4:54 am

      The sentiment building up around the world might be strong objection to what is being done by certain people who are Jewish – and who remind you twice a minute that they are operating a ‘Jewsish Stste’ – but I hope and believe that it is not anti-Semitism but something more to do with our common humanity.

      • yourstruly on January 22, 2016, 6:40 pm

        Undoubtedly for some if not most who oppose the Zionist regime the reason for their doing so has to do with our common humanity, but for others there’s enough antisemitism building up in them that they’re committing antisemitic acts (including violence), such that police have been assigned to guard synagogues in France, Spain & other European nations. Israeli leaders, of course, are ecstatic over this. For some time now they’ve been appealing to French Jews to “come home.” They must figure that six hundred thousand French Jews (a significant percentage of whom are “chosen” (ie Ashkanazi) might stave off the much feared but inevitable demographic turnabout (whereby Palestinians outnumber Jews) for a year or so. Such indifference to actual Jewish suffering has a long history, with the infamous statement by David Ben Gurion at a meeting of “left” Zionists telling it as it was and still is – “If I knew it would be possible to save all the children in Germany by bringing them over to England and only half of them by transporting them to Eratz Israel, then I opt for the second alternative.”

      • MHughes976 on January 25, 2016, 3:17 pm

        I do see what you mean, yt. I admit that anti-Zionism, even if rooted in belief in common humanity, can itself go wrong and produce excesses and crimes but it is still a different thing from anti-Semitism, whose roots are not in that belief. I understand that even humane anger at events such as the Gaza horrors may lose its good sense and produce, but not excuse, anti-Zionist excesses. However I hope that the element of humanity and sense of shared humanity in this sentiment will always act as a major restraint.

  13. Kay24 on January 22, 2016, 6:45 am

    To many things still stay the same. The parasites extracting the most from us, are at it again.
    This time playing the “oy vey, we are afraid of big bad Iran” card, to their benefit. Their nutty leader is having a tantrum and demanding even more. Have they no shame? Nah, in fact they are quite thick skinned too.

    Israel is the millstone around the neck of the US.

    It is a shame that President after President in the US, keeps enabling the criminals. When will the wealthy Jewish millionaires and billionaires step in
    and give their motherland the dough to continue their illegal settlements, and
    weapons, to kill civilians? How long will Israel sponge off the US?

    “Netanyahu demands more billions from US after Iran Deal, insults US Envoy, Steals more Land”

    • Kay24 on January 22, 2016, 7:12 am

      It is so ugly to see a man like Nutty throw a tantrum.

  14. Ossinev on January 22, 2016, 8:01 am

    @Annie Robbins
    “i don’t think a softer image would help at this juncture ismail because too many people are now aware of the states actions and policies. the policies would have to change, something that has been relatively consistent regardless of who’s in charge”

    I fully agree plus there is of course the elephant in the room which the Israelis and their Elder brethren in the US really fear = the inevitability of the implosion of the PA and direct responsibility for the stolen territories and the indigenous population being laid squarely at the feet of the Zionist thieves. Whatever changes take place in the format and character of current and future Israeli governments will be irrelevant. There will be no possibility of continuing with the two state charade since Abbas and his fellow collaborators will be yesterday`s men. As has been pointed out by a wide range of commentators from Kerry to Levy Israel will then be faced with a stark choice = a Jewish Apartheid state a la South Africa or a state without a Jewish majority. Given their history I think the Zionists will plump for in your face apartheid as opposed to the current “softer” version.

  15. Talkback on January 22, 2016, 9:10 am

    Shapiro has still a lot to learn to become a fully grown Zionist. Criticizing the only Apartheid state in the milky way is certainly not the right way. One has to embrace Jews disenfrenchasing Nonjews. And to become a Zionist sage one has do disenfrenchase them personally.

  16. Laurent Weppe on January 22, 2016, 9:30 am

    The flap demonstrates an important sociological trend: American Jews, even mainstream ones indoctrinated to love Israel, are breaking more and more publicly with the Jewish state

    Any system solely built upon tribalistic loyalty is fated to devolve that way. Eventually, the community’s “gatekeepers” become its de facto absolute rulers (because any leader who disagree with them ends up either thrown out or beaten into submission), then proclaim that any expression of dissent toward their rulership is tantamount to treason. Members of the community are therefore left with few choices: with debate and dissent stifled, they can either cravenly repeat that deers are horned horses, leave their community to join another, cause an internal schism, or finally try to cut the gatekeepers’ heads.


    what happens if “Zionism with a human face” returns to Israel? Livni, Shavit et al, all far more consoling to US Zionists

    They can’t “return” for the same reason that he people who wanted “gentler” colonial empires or a “gradual” abolition of slavery in the previous eras failed to impose any meaningful change: in both case, the de facto aristocracies of profiteers sustained by the abusive systems:
    1. Viewed even the meekest voices calling for even the slightest reforms as arch archnemeses to be crushed
    2. Had enough clout, money and firepower to make the threats of burning their whole country to the ground in a final, suicidal ditch of spite very credible
    And effectively bullied into submission everyone apart from the most determined.

    Even if other right-wingers cumulating
    • More moderate personal world-views
    • Awareness of the long-term unsustainability of the Greater Israel & “Ethnically” pure Israel projects
    • Not callous enough to simply think “I’ll just get a second passport, get out of here before the final collapse and fuck the fools and the plebs who didn’t or couldn’t take the appropriate precautions
    Were to beat the religious-nationalist coalition in the ballot box, the colonization apparatus would almost certainly succeed in forcing them to keep the business as usual approach.

    Something similar can be said about Obama’s presidency: what Obama the individual citizen who happened to win two presidential elections thinks on the matter doesn’t matter much if the US’ security-industrial complex can sabotage the American Republic in retaliation against any attempt to rein them in and limit their privileges.

    • JWalters on January 22, 2016, 5:19 pm

      Good analysis of the “gatekeeper” to “tyrant” transition, and the inertial power of big money in sustaining the status quo.

  17. Boo on January 22, 2016, 12:30 pm

    “Little Jew boy”, eh? Gosh, Aviv Bushinsky has outed himself as an anti-Semite!

    • Talkback on January 23, 2016, 5:20 am

      Not at all. Shapiro can be considered genetically inferior, a kind of “Lebensunwertes Leben” according to the minister who is responsible for educating Jewish children in the only Apartheid state in the milky way:

      ‘Dr.’ Naftali Bennett wants to eradicate the toxic, highly contagious condition known as ‘opposing the occupation’
      The education minister attacked the country’s diplomats last week by suggesting they had ‘problematic DNA.’

      Still, having “problematic DNA” is better than not being human at all, right?

      “Most Jewish first-graders attend ultra-Orthodox and religious schools. The majority of them are educated along the lines of “The King’s Torah.” A Jew is human. A non-Jew is non-human. “Thou shalt not kill” does not apply to non-Jews. And this is not delivered in the form of incitement, but as a simple statement of a fact. As simple as calling a chair a chair.”

  18. RobertHenryEller on January 22, 2016, 3:32 pm

    “You’ve surely seen the coverage of the “Jewboy” insult aimed at the US ambassador to Israel by a former aide to the Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu.”

    You didn’t see this story if you rely on the New York Times.

    Instead, the NYT continues to publish op-ed pieces by right-wing Israelis like Shmuel Rosen and Yoav Gallant, conspicuously refusing to allow NYT readers to respond via comments.

    The New York Times might as well be owned by Sheldon Adelson, who publishes the free paper Hayom, which is nothing but a pro-Netanyahu, pro-Likud, propaganda rag.

  19. Stephen Shenfield on January 23, 2016, 6:45 am

    I wonder how long it is since Mr. Shapiro was called a “Jewboy” or subjected to any other anti-Semitic slur by a Gentile fellow American (if he ever was). For that he had to go to Israel! It may help him understand the real nature of Zionism.

    • echinococcus on January 23, 2016, 7:06 am

      Being probably a Zionist himself (fat chance he would get an ambassadorship –and to where!– without it), Mr. Shapiro is likely to greet this spittle by an “it’s raining!”. He was not speaking in his own name, as another poster already observed; his reaction to what he had been told to convey is unknown. And Weiss is as usual trying to make a spring out of a single swallow, as if the inside-Zionist Jewish moodswings re the current politics of the Zionist entity had any importance.

      • lysias on January 23, 2016, 8:48 am

        David Remnick’s piece on Ayman Odeh in the current New Yorker shows how former Zionists are capable of revising their thinking.

  20. Mooser on February 1, 2016, 6:51 pm

    “how former Zionists are capable of revising their thinking.”

    Or vicey-versa? Well, anyway, Roseanne Barr has decided to weigh in on the “little Jew-boy” incident via “Jews sans frontieres” blog.

    She seems to be revising her thinking, too!

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