Sunday, October 22nd | 2 Heshvan 5778

Close

Be in the know!

Get our exclusive daily news briefing.

Subscribe
August 20, 2015 11:11 am

Anti-Zionism’s Mask Falls

avatar by Ben Cohen / JNS.org

Email a copy of "Anti-Zionism’s Mask Falls" to a friend
Jeremy Corbyn once defended himself on live television for calling Hezbollah and Hamas his "friends." Photo: Screenshot.

Jeremy Corbyn once defended himself on live television for calling Hezbollah and Hamas his “friends.” Photo: Screenshot.

JNS.org – The first Saturday in September will see Israel’s national soccer team travel to Cardiff, the capital of Wales, for a vital qualifying game for next year’s European Championship in France. As is becoming the norm when any Israeli athletes travel abroad, the team will also face protests off the field, led by activists who believe that Israel has no right to compete internationally in the first place.

I mention this forthcoming event because one of the speakers addressing the anti-Israel rally outside the soccer stadium is Jeremy Corbyn, a far-left member of the U.K. parliament for the opposition Labour Party and, more importantly, the current front-runner in the battle for that party’s leadership. If Corbyn ends up winning the contest— triggered by the resignation of former leader Ed Miliband, following his poor showing in the U.K.’s general election earlier this year—we will have a vocal supporter of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement at the helm of one of Europe’s more august left-wing parties.

Corbyn is a patron of the U.K.’s pro-BDS Palestine Solidarity Campaign, which is well known for its anti-Semitic targeting of Israel through its constant comparisons of the Jewish state with Nazi Germany and apartheid-era South Africa. But that, arguably, is the least of it.

During the last week, Corbyn has been confronted in the media over his connections to a London-based Holocaust denier and “Palestine solidarity” activist named Paul Eisen. In the past, he has vocally defended Ra’ed Salah, the leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel, despite Salah’s endorsement of the anti-Semitic blood libel and his claim that Jews were warned in advance of the September 11, 2001 al-Qaeda terrorist atrocities. When Salah got into a legal tussle with the British authorities during an extended stay in the U.K., Corbyn urged a parliamentary inquiry into the influence of the “pro-Israel Lobby” on government policy. This sinister statement was made after it emerged that the Community Security Trust (CST), a professional and highly-respected body that deals with security for the U.K.’s Jewish community, had provided evidence of Salah’s toxic views to the government.

Related coverage

October 20, 2017 1:51 pm
1

Hamas Supporter to Receive Award From Harvard Student Group

He has publicly endorsed Hamas, and secretly schemed with Hamas' supporters to thwart US-led peace efforts in the Middle East. Now Nihad Awad is preparing for a prestigious...

Now, Corbyn is seemingly going to lead the charge against the U.K. presence of the Israeli soccer team—which, ironically, only plays in European competitions because the Jewish state was expelled from the Asian Football Confederation in 1974, thanks to the diktat of the Arab League boycott of Israel. Since Corbyn is an enthusiastic supporter of dictators like the now-dead Hugo Chavez in Venezuela and the still-living Vladimir Putin in Russia, it won’t bother him that the Arab boycott was pushed by some of the worst human rights abusers in history. In fact, he won’t be content until Israel is completely isolated, not just in the Middle East but in every corner of the globe.

No wonder, then, that a poll from London’s Jewish Chronicle newspaper reveals that almost 70 percent of British Jews are “concerned” by the prospect of Corbyn leading the Labour Party, with an overwhelming 83 percent expressing alarm at Corbyn’s infamous description of Hamas and Hezbollah as “our friends.”

What does this tell us? Most immediately, it tells us that the vast majority of British Jews aren’t buying the nonsense that anti-Zionism isn’t anti-Semitism, and that BDS carefully separates between Jews on the one hand and Israelis on the other. Much of the crowd who will cheer Israel’s soccer stars will be composed of British Jews expressing their emotional and cultural affinity with the Jewish state. And because they will dare to do that, they will be harassed by a mob baying slogans about Israel’s supposed war crimes and racist roots, led by a man who aspires to become Britain’s prime minister.

Corbyn clearly doesn’t feel overly perturbed by the chatter about anti-Semitism that is dogging him; when the Jewish Chronicle published a series of questions addressed to him, instead of picking up the phone and calling them—as any politician who cared about the feelings of the Jewish community would naturally do—he appointed a spokesperson to engage in an email exchange with the paper. Thus did readers learn that “Jeremy” considers that “Holocaust denial is vile and wrong,” though at no point did “Jeremy” condemn by name any of the Holocaust deniers and conspiracy theorists (among them the followers of Lyndon Larouche, an American far-right leader) with whom he has associated.

Corbyn can take this relaxed attitude because he knows that his supporters regard accusations of anti-Semitism as a political smear with no credibility. This view is commonplace enough among progressives in America as well. By contrast, the term “anti-Zionism” is one they embrace warmly, regarding it as integral to their matrix of progressive values and goals, alongside opposition to austerity policies, environmental activism, “solidarity” with “progressive” regimes in the developing world, implacable hostility to any military actions undertaken by democratic governments, and so on.

Tellingly, the Jewish Chronicle poll includes a clever question that Jewish pollsters in America should also be asking: How do you feel when a politician describes himself or herself as “anti-Zionist?” The paper reported, “More than 44 percent say they ‘always’ think such a statement really means ‘anti-Jewish,’ with a further 27 percent saying they ‘often’ think the claim is anti-Semitic in its intent.”

It continued, “In total, almost 90 percent of Jews feel that ‘anti-Zionist’ is used as shorthand for ‘anti-Jewish’ by politicians.”

Slowly, slowly, does the mask fall: anti-Semitism has twisted itself into anti-Zionism. We saw that graphically in Spain this week, when a reggae festival disinvited the American-Jewish singer Matisyahu after he refused to condemn Israel. Encouragingly, the fact that the festival backed down after a wave of protest, reinstating Matisyahu’s invitation, shows that there are many non-Jews coming around to a similar view.

We need to send a wake-up call to proudly identifying anti-Zionists like Jeremy Corbyn: refraining from attacks on Jews as Jews isn’t enough to absolve them of the charge of anti-Jewish bigotry. Substituting the word “Zionist” for “Jew,” or consorting with active anti-Semites (and then distancing yourself from them only once these meetings become public knowledge), is a shabby trick, and we are smarter than that. Crucially, we understand that the immediate target of Western anti-Zionists isn’t Israel, but Jews in their own countries who identify with Israel.

Before I close, I should answer any reader who is wondering whether Jeremy Corbyn could actually end up as British prime minister. Given that many pundits are predicting that his own party will split if he wins the leadership, and that Labour has invariably been unelectable when it leans to far to the left, one would think that the chances are slim. But even as opposition leader, he will gain a bully pulpit that he could only have dreamed of just a decade ago.

Ben Cohen, senior editor of TheTower.org & The Tower Magazine, writes a weekly column for JNS.org on Jewish affairs and Middle Eastern politics. His writings have been published in Commentary, the New York Post, Haaretz, The Wall Street Journal, and many other publications. He is the author of “Some of My Best Friends: A Journey Through Twenty-First Century Antisemitism” (Edition Critic, 2014). 

The opinions presented by Algemeiner bloggers are solely theirs and do not represent those of The Algemeiner, its publishers or editors. If you would like to share your views with a blog post on The Algemeiner, please be in touch through our Contact page.

Share this Story: Share On Facebook Share On Twitter Email This Article

Let your voice be heard!

Join the Algemeiner
  • Looks like all the bribing, blackmail, threats, intimidations, lies and false flags that in the past helped shield Israel from reality are coming undone.

    No one to blame but yourself Israel. Your homicidal forays into the world’s largest concentration camp, Gaza, will be your undoing, the world has finally had enough.

    BTW, is it anti-Semitic to ask why the Jewish messaging service Odigo, warned its employees in NYC on 9/11 to get the hell out of the WTC two hours before it was attacked, and not by Muslims?

  • naro

    Jews must not allow their enemies to survive and gather strength like the Nazis did. we need an army of militiamen outside Israel willing to scarifice their lives for the Jewish people.

  • Is Jeremy Corbyn a fascist? Fascism can be defined in almost any way but its primary contemporary usage seems to have deteriorated so that it is now understood to be little more than an epithet to be used against those with whom we passionately disagree.

    It is truly simple. If he is not anti-Jewish he has no problem sharing a platform with those people who are anti-Jewish, or, calling them his friends and proclaiming the validity of their causes. What does that make of the morality of the man who would be Prime Minister of Great Britain?

    http://thebilateralist.blogspot.co.uk/2015/08/jeremy-corbyn-and-fascist-threat.html

  • Muzhik

    Personally, I find the prospect of Corbyn being elected head of ANY party terrifying. When I ask my friends here in America if they know how many people died in the revolution that brought Hitler to power, I get widely varying numbers. No one seems to understand that Hitler didn’t gain power through violence. He was constitutionally and popularly elected as German Chancellor.

    Giving this man a pulpit that grants him ANY kind of respectability is a very bad double-ungood idea.

    • Max Genghis Cohen

      It is not true that Hitler was popularly elected. The Nazi Party never got over 33% of the seats. It was Joseph Stalin’s orders to the Communist Party to reject a coalition with the Social Democrat Party that put Hitler into power. And violence played a significant role in that Hitler ordered the deaths of his important political enemies.

  • marian Lewis

    The voters who will support ‘Jeremy’ are the young who are fed up with the non socialist Labour Party and who are strongly in favour of Hamas Hizballah et. al.

    I predict a fascist government in ten years.

  • E Pluribus Wombat

    Wait till Corbyn brings Galloway back into the fold. Jew hatred has become a crucial and fundamental plank in the Labour party’s entire ethos.

  • The strongest anti-Israel and anti-Zionist supporters are the jewish organisations NIF (New Israel Fund) and its Agit-Prop arm “Shatil”, the “Jewish Voice for Peace”, JStreet and JCall and the swiss JVJP.

    They support ideologically and financially the infamous BDS-Movement. They support the defamation, delegitimation and demonization of Israel, its governemnt and institutions and our IDF.

    Members, board and staff of these anti-israeli and anti-jewish organisations must be outlawed. Ist the only possibility to stop them.

    • Robert Davis

      They are not the worst, I mean thos of most influence which are the maintreaim Jews, people like you and me ie zionists who do not understand the origin of antizionism and therefore cannot fight it. The origin is THE ABSENCE OF RECOGNITION OF ISRAEL SOVEREIGNTY OVER WESTZRN PALESTINE AND ITS LEGAL RIGHTS CONFERRED BY THE TREATY OF SAN REMO, let alone History. ISRAEL HAS THE LEGAL RIGHT OVER PALESTINE NOT THE ARABS. So why does the PM not claim Israel’s sovereignty? because he is a coward and afraid to do so and that is the reason why dogs bark at him.

      • Charlie Hall

        The San Remo conference produced no legally binding documents. And the State of Israel would not exist for another 28 years, so it couldn’t have granted it any rights.

        How so many Zionists can be so stupid as to make these kinds of arguments is beyond me. We are supposed to be an intelligent people.

        • Charlie Hall, August 25, 2015 11:39 am

          “How so many Zionists can be so stupid as to make these kinds of arguments is beyond me. We are supposed to be an intelligent people.”

          There are always exceptions. You are one, for example.

      • Robert Davis, August 22, 2015 11:42 am

        “because he is a coward and afraid to do so and that is the reason why dogs bark at him”

        As a Person living far away from Israel you are a bit too laud and wrong. Our PM is a war hero and expert on security. He is responsible for Israel and ist People.

        Stop eating pork, perhaps it will help you to think differently.

  • Peter Joffe

    The scourge antisemitism is driven by Muslims It is plain for all to see but being ‘politically correct’ nothing is said. We need to see that Islam is the curse of the 21st Century and it will not be eradicated by being the ‘nice guys’. Beware of ALL Muslims.
    Where ever you read Australia, you can substitute it with any country in the Free World. If we don’t look out we will no longer be free.
    This is very interesting and we all need to read it from start to finish. Â And send it on to everyone.
    Maybe this is why our Australian Muslims are so quiet and not speaking out about any atrocities.

    Can a good Muslim become a good Australian ?

    This question was forwarded to a friend who worked in Saudi Arabia  for 20 years.

    The following is his reply:

    Theologically – no. . . . Because his allegiance is to Allah, The moon god of Arabia .

    Religiously – no.. . . Because no other religion is accepted by His Allah except Islam . (Quran, 2:256)(Koran)

    Scripturally – no. . . Because his allegiance is to the five Pillars of Islam and the Quran.

    Geographically – no . Because his allegiance is to Mecca , to which he turns in prayer five times a day.

    Socially – no. . . Because his allegiance to Islam forbids him to make friends with Christians or Jews ..

    Politically – no.. . . Because he must submit to the mullahs (spiritual leaders),
    who teach annihilation of Israel and destruction of America , (the great Satan) , Australia and the rest of the free world.

    Domestically – no. .. . Because he is instructed to marry four Women and beat and scourge his wife
    when she disobeys him (Quran 4:34 )

    Intellectually – no. . Because he cannot accept the Australian Constitution since it is based on Biblical
    principles and he believes the Bible to be corrupt.

    Philosophically – no. . . . Because Islam, Muhammad, and the Quran does not allow freedom of religion
    and expression. Democracy and Islam cannot co-exist. Every Muslim government is either dictatorial or autocratic.

    Spiritually – no.. . . Because when we declare ‘one nation under God,’ The Christian’s God is loving and kind,
    while Allah is NEVER referred to as Heavenly father, nor is he ever called love in the Quran’s 99 excellent names.

    Therefore, after much study and deliberation…. Perhaps we should be very suspicious of ALL MUSLIMS
    in this country. – – – They obviously cannot be both ‘good’ Muslims and good Australians. Call it what you
    wish it’s still the truth. You had better believe it. The more who understand this, the better it will be for our
    country and our future.

    The religious war is bigger than we know or understand. …..

    Footnote: The Muslims have said they will destroy us from within. SO FREEDOM IS NOT FREE.

    THE AUSSIE DIGGERS WANT THIS TO ROLL OUT ALL OVER AUSTRALIA .

    • Robert Davis

      Your political diagnoistic is wrong. See my 2 comments.

    • steve specterman

      The Islamic world of 57 states purposely start wars among themselves.
      They kill each other and Muslims from other areas. Why?

      Simple. Islam wants to take over the Western world. It knows that it will never succeed with bombs and bullets or even chopping off heads.

      So , knowing how soft and gullible Western politicians are. It creates these wars so that it will drive the civilian Muslims to seek shelter through either legal or illegal means in the Western world.

      In the last 50 years we have seen the absolute exponential acceleration from Islamic states from Africa, Pakistan and the Middle East of Asylum seekers and more over the immigrants who know if they can hide long enough there will be an eventual amnesty to allow them to gain citizen ship.

      Hence the eventual take over as Muslims become more and powerful within by population- Gain seats in government by standing in future majority Muslim areas. Until finally their goal will be reached. And then the take over to the laws of Sharia and a Caliphate.

      As the Muslim brotherhood leader said “If it takes a thousand years”.

      So does that sound far fetched. Could it be the truth?

      You decide.

    • Charlie Hall

      “Theologically – no. . . . Because his allegiance is to Allah, The moon god of Arabia .”

      Allah is no moon God. It is the same God that Jews worship according to all legitimate Jewish sources. And religious Jews also put God first.

      “Religiously – no.. . . Because no other religion is accepted by His Allah except Islam . (Quran, 2:256)(Koran)”

      A lot of Christians say the same thing.

      “Scripturally – no. . . Because his allegiance is to the five Pillars of Islam and the Quran.”

      Christianity and Judaism have the same kind of allegiance.

      “Geographically – no . Because his allegiance is to Mecca , to which he turns in prayer five times a day.”

      Jews pray to Jerusalem three times a day. And Jerusalem is also a political capital. Mecca is not the political of anything.

      “Socially – no. . . Because his allegiance to Islam forbids him to make friends with Christians or Jews ..”

      Not true; I have had numerous Muslim friends.

      “Politically – no.. . . Because he must submit to the mullahs (spiritual leaders),
      who teach annihilation of Israel and destruction of America , (the great Satan) , Australia and the rest of the free world.”

      There are plenty of Christians who have the same attitude.

      “Domestically – no. .. . Because he is instructed to marry four Women and beat and scourge his wife
      when she disobeys him (Quran 4:34 )”

      I don’t know any Muslims married to more than one woman.

      “Intellectually – no. . Because he cannot accept the Australian Constitution since it is based on Biblical
      principles and he believes the Bible to be corrupt.”

      It is no more based on Biblical principles than is the US Constitution, which is to say, not at all.

      “Philosophically – no. . . . Because Islam, Muhammad, and the Quran does not allow freedom of religion
      and expression. Democracy and Islam cannot co-exist. Every Muslim government is either dictatorial or autocratic.”

      The last statement is false. Senegal and Tunisia are free democracies today according to Freedom House and there have been others in the past.

      “Spiritually – no.. . . Because when we declare ‘one nation under God,’ The Christian’s God is loving and kind,
      while Allah is NEVER referred to as Heavenly father, nor is he ever called love in the Quran’s 99 excellent names.”

      Allah is simply the Arabic word for God. And the US is a secular state.

      Jews who have been massacred in large numbers in the name of Christianity might question how loving the Christian God is.

  • Mr Trump, I do not even know whether you said what Issam Amira accuses you of, but to be ‘rejected’ by an ‘islamic cleric’ is the most cogent testimonial you could possibly receive! Congratulations.

  • Ephraim

    Your last paragraph is an interesting point. When the Democratic Party abandoned liberalism and progressivism in favor of far left doctrine, it too lost credibility and votes. Facing an incredibly anti-human party, proud to shut down the government and destroy its credit rating over not getting its rabid cruel policies passed, Democrats would seem to be the party of the future. The Democratic Party of the 1960s would have been. But this is not ‘your father’s’ Democratic Party. This is a consortium of antisemitic hate mongers, led by their god in the White House, who are about to approve one of the worst crimes against humanity ever conceived. As such, even with a situation which should make it the majority party, it embarked upon an extreme left-wing journey paying lies to their former support of human rights.

    I guess the only hope is that the party is beaten so badly, that true humanitarians finally learn the lesson and discard the bigots from the front ranks, especially their evil venal leader.

    • Robert Davis

      Right, the present democratic parti is REGRESSISVE, ANTISEMIT, COWARD,OPPORTUNIST, well very much like the obamination moslem and african, non american guy who squats the WH illegally since he lied to get the job and continues to lie and make an anti american Policy. He should be impeached and jailed.

      • Charlie Hall

        Obama is not Muslim, he is not African. He is a natural born US Citizen.

        And he is a lot smarter than you based on your multiple false and ignorant comments here.

  • enufizenuf

    “We need to send a wake-up call to proudly identifying anti-Zionists like Jeremy Corbyn…” oh, yeah, that’s really going to do the trick. Sorry, but the arabs are much more effective by using the threat of violence.
    It may be more civilized to not do so, but one can also wind up in a very precarious situation, as Israel has. People need to re-examine their approach.

    • Robert Davis

      arabs’ threats Policy is effective only against europe not against Israel nor the US. Israel should first claim sovereignty over W.Palestine and then expell arabs. Only thereafter can negociations be effective not before and only with arab states not with the mysticators!!! Lefters’ Policy is totally wrong from A to Z.

  • Texgotham

    The Labour Party will split with the moderates perhaps joining with the Liberals and left becoming a splinter group. The U.K. may devolve into a one-party state — the Conservatives.

    • Eric R.

      If Scotland secedes, then the Tories would rule uncontested. Relations with Israel would improve a little with England, but an independent Scotland would truly be a sick, evil, frothing, psychotic, Jew-hating, Israel-bashing state – an Iran in Europe.

  • Anti-Zionism is Jew-hatred. World Jewry is imperiled by a resurgence of Jew-hatred not seen since the 1930’s and 1940’s. Israel is a fact that is not going away. And the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement will continue to grow, unless it’s roundly delegitimized.

    • Robert Davis

      Yes but only Israel can do it by claiming sovereignty over W.Palestine and force everyone admit it. Anyway leftwing parties are soon going away but if Israel does not claim sovereignty the rightwing parties soon taking over will NOT be able to do a different Policy than the leftwing one. Which proves THE SOLUTION IS IN ISRAEL NOT EUROPE.

Algemeiner.com