I’ve been doing this work far too long not to recognize the attack on Weir for what it is – to telegraph a message of absolute censorship and destruction should others want to expose what she has exposed to the general public eye and a way to split, decimate, and neutralize the solidarity movement at a point it is finally gaining ground .
This attack is not about racism and never was. If racism were the concern of JVP and US Campaign, they would have condemned ALL racism. Instead they make self-righteous statements of opposition to racism and then name TWO only: anti-semitism and Islamophobia, while the racism that is at the core of this struggle, Zionism, is not even hinted at. What hypocrisy, and it is this that gives the lie to their purported reasons for their attack on Weir.
One of the most puzzling aspects of JVP’s and Campaign’s justification of this attack on Alison is their statement that she has “legitimized” racism by appearing on certain shows (Joseph Munyer of USC said exactly that on FB posts), yet the organizations refuse to see the contradiction and hypocrisy when they work with Zionist groups, thereby giving “legitimacy” to the racism of Zionism – remembering that across the globe, Zionism is recognized as racism. It IS, on its face, racism.
The reason for the attack against Alison is that she exposed Jewish power in the US, the rather stunning power that resulted in the establishment of Israel as a Jewish state. She was certainly not the first to do that – it’s been written about for years (long before Atzmon), including extensively in the Daily Forward for decades – but she put it into easily readable form available to the public and substantiated and confirmed it with solid research and references. This is not allowed. It is “beyond thinkable thought”, as Chomsky says.
The Jewish community speaks with pride about it’s presence and influence in many areas, as would any oppressed or formerly oppressed group. That in itself is not a bad thing, but to destroy a movement because someone outside that community said the very same thing, is evil. The hypocrisy and contradictions in this attack are almost beyond comprehension.
I also believe concern about that revelation is why Chomsky and Bennis, so good on nearly everything else, refuse to recognize the power of the Lobby in the face of all evidence to the contrary. They, and certainly we, are all concerned about a real rise in anti-Jewish racism.
It’s a very slippery slope, isn’t it? No sane person wants to see a repeat of the 1930s and 40s, so we avoid talking about things that might generate a similar anger again. And yet the things being done by Israel in the name of Jews everywhere are exactly the things that generate deep anger and contempt against nations that do such things and against people who are perceived to support them. It is those actions, that state in its current configuration, that must end, not the work of people exposing them.
As long as that state insists that it is the state for all Jews, and that it speaks for all Jews, all Jews get tarred with the ugliness, even my Jewish husband who has been in the struggle for Palestinian freedom longer than I have – almost 35 years.
For Jewish groups, or Jewish-led groups, to split the movement (one simply cannot deny that is what has happened, and what was surely expected to happen) is so transparent and completely unacceptable that there is almost nothing more to say on it.
I have been saying for years that there would come a time when our erstwhile allies split away from us, for many are not in the struggle for Palestine – they are in it for Israel. They want to end the occupation because it is clearly harmful to Israel. They believe that once the occupation and siege are ended, Israel can continue to live as an apartheid state and the world will leave them alone.
After we lose those folks, I thought, the next to go will be those who are afraid of the exposures needed to finally get to justice. Perhaps I had the timing backward, for this is where we are now. It will take great courage on all our parts to lay out the reality and to demand a change, to demand that power be used for justice, not for continuing apartheid and a false sense of security.
Just for the record, I’m thoroughly familiar with the arguments against racism, about ends and means, about the need to fight racism wherever we find it and have been a significant part of that struggle all my life. That is NOT what this is about, and the very people saying it is are themselves working with racists.