We have repeatedly pointed out that New York Times opinion editor Bari Weiss demands loyalty of American Jews to Israel on Zionist principle: we are one Jewish people, and the Jewish state reestablished Jewish sovereignty after the millennia. Her expectation is not so different from that of Donald Trump, who has said that Jews who vote Democrat are being “disloyal” to Israel.
Weiss’s new book, “How to Fight Anti-Semitism,” presses the point by attacking anti-Zionist Jews as enemies of the Jewish people, according to excerpts posted by cartoonist Eli Valley and the book’s publisher at Amazon.
Anti-Zionism is not just anti-Semitism because of current reality. Anti-Zionism is also anti-Semitism because of history… As many well-intentioned people look to understand why a very small but very vocal group of Jews seems as deeply opposed to Jewish interests as many of our community’s enemies, these Jews ought to be understood in context, as part of a long history of leftwing anti-Semitic movements that successfully conscript Jews as agents in their own destruction.
Weiss lumps these anti-Zionist Jews in with Stalinist Jews and other disloyals. “Whereas Jews once had to convert to Christianity, now they have to convert to anti-Zionism,” she writes.
Once again, this is Zionist doctrine. To be Jewish in the 20th/21st century means to support Israel. Weiss’s idea of “Jewish interests” is a familiar loyalty oath re Israel. Here is Irving Kristol on Jewish interests 46 years ago, very much in the same mode:
Senator [George] McGovern is very sincere when he says that he will try to cut the military budget by 30%. And this is to drive a knife in the heart of Israel… Jews don’t like big military budgets. But it is now an interest of the Jews to have a large and powerful military establishment in the United States.
Eli Valley tweets,
@bariweiss ‘s lies about the Jewish left—that we’re ignorant of our history, that we’re not motivated by Jewish values, that we’re concerned simply w/social acceptance—are an obscene replay of Trump’s antisemitic “disloyalty” trope. That it’s hyped by the Forward is astounding.
Valley refers to Batya Ungar-Sargon of the Forward. She has been promoting Bari Weiss’s book, and herself has sought to marginalize anti-Zionists as a lunatic fringe.
I think 95 percent of the American Jewish community is pro Israel. We are all still pro Israel. What we are not is willing to give it unconditional support… You can be pro Israel and criticize Israel, that is what it means to be an American Jew. We are no longer willing to give unconditional support.
Ungar-Sargon has herself posted excerpts from Bari Weiss’s book containing criticisms of the anti-Zionist left. “It’s true that anti-Semitism on the left isn’t actively threatening Jewish lives. Instead it demands that Jews renounce other Jews/Jewish history or face moral condemnation in progressive spaces,” Ungar-Sargon writes.
“So now anti-semitism can be about hurting certain people’s feelings,” Scott Roth has remarked.
Will Menaker jibes: “It’s complicated and truly hard to say which is worse: being killed or having to face any criticism of Israel at all ever.”
Mairav Zonszein cites Weiss’s book in a tweet about the new definition of anti-Semitism: “I think it’s fair to say this is war.” And if it is, how many anti-Zionists have platforms in the mainstream media? Zero. So it’s a generational war of social media voices versus entitled establishment voices, on one of the great ideological issues of the day, Is Zionism a failure?
Thanks to Donald Johnson.