Anti-Zionism, Anti-Israel Unrelated to Anti-Semitism

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Anti-Zionism, Anti-Israel Unrelated to Anti-Semitism

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.orgHome – Stephen Lendman)

Justifiable criticism of ideologically extremist Zionism and ruthless Israeli policies have nothing do with with anti-Semitism.

Claiming otherwise is a long ago discredited canard – still surfacing, disgracefully denigrating Israeli critics, ignoring enormous Jewish state harm to Palestinians and others.

Zionism is tyranny by another name – extremist, undemocratic, hateful, ruthless, racist, destructive, and hostile to peace, equity and justice.

It’s contemptuous of fundamental legal, moral and ethical principles – a monster threatening anyone and anything it opposes, a cancer infesting Israel, America, other Western societies and elsewhere.

It considers Jews and others unequal, Muslims especially demeaned, Palestinians viciously persecuted and otherwise harmed.

Anglo-Zionism is a hugely destructive force threatening everyone everywhere. Israeli persecution of Palestinians is well documented.

Occupation harshness enforces institutionalized state terror. Fear is constant, collective punishment official policy.

High crimes are committed against Palestinians daily – unaccountably because the world community does nothing to challenge them, letting Israel get away with mass murder and much more.

Peaceful Palestinian demonstrations are assaulted, including by live fire – in Gaza and elsewhere. 

Free expression and movement are prohibited throughout the territories, Gazans held hostage under suffocating blockade. 

Population centers are isolated, borders closed, normal daily life denied. Economic strangulation and institutionalized racism are imposed under apartheid rule far worse than South Africa’s. 

Neighborhood incursions, land, sea and air attacks, bulldozed homes, land theft, ethnic cleansing, slow-motion genocide, targeted killings, mass arrests, torture, and gulag imprisonment reflect daily life for praying to the wrong God.

Fundamental civil and human rights are denied. Crimes of war and against humanity repeat without redress. Wanting to live free in sovereign Palestine is considered terrorism.

Palestinian journalists are silenced for truth-telling – Palestinian lawmakers imprisoned for belonging to the wrong party.

Police state harshness and denial of fundamental rights reflect daily life in Occupied Palestine.

The Netanyahu regime and media scoundrels blame Palestinian victims for Israeli high crimes committed against them.

Growing numbers of Jews in America, the West, and elsewhere, especially younger ones, freely criticize Israel – their actions unrelated to anti-Semitism.

Jewish Voice for Peace executive director Rebecca Vilkomerson spoke for countless other Jews (and non-Jewish Israeli critics), saying:

“We’re enormously proud to stand with over 30 Jewish organizations worldwide to say no to…harmful definition(s) of anti-Semitism and yes to human rights and the freedom to protest.”

As of July, over 40 Jewish groups worldwide oppose equating anti-Semitism with criticism of Israel. One has nothing to do with the other.

These organizations expressed alarm about actions against individuals and groups supporting Palestinian rights, notably the BDS movement and others – falsely accusing them of anti-Semitism for opposing Israeli ruthlessness.

A joint statement by the Jewish groups criticized the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism, stating:

It’s a “perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

Examples include targeting Israel, accusing Jews with conspiring against humanity, blaming Jews for “why things go wrong” – criticism expressed in speech, writing, and actions, using derogatory stereotypes and negative character traits.

At the same time, criticism of Israel similar to what’s leveled against other countries cannot be regarded as anti-Semitic. 

Where is the line crossed from acceptable to unacceptable criticism? Nothing should be off the table if supported by cold, hard, indisputable facts.

According to the Jewish groups, the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism “is worded in such a way as to be easily adopted or considered by western governments to intentionally equate legitimate criticisms of Israel and advocacy for Palestinian rights with antisemitism, as a means to suppress the former.”

“This conflation undermines both the Palestinian struggle for freedom, justice and equality and the global struggle against antisemitism. It also serves to shield Israel from being held accountable to universal standards of human rights and international law.”

“We urge our governments, municipalities, universities and other institutions to reject the IHRA definition and instead take effective measures to defeat white supremacist nationalist hate and violence and to end complicity in Israel’s.”

UK Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn has been viciously smeared by Israel, Zionist organizations, and supportive media scoundrels for supporting Palestinian rights, justifiably criticizing Jewish state harshness against them.

On Tuesday, Labor’s ruling body adopted the IHRA’s flawed definition of anti-Semitism in full, rejecting additional remarks Corbyn wanted included.

Labor’s National Executive Committee (NEC) governing body said it “adopted all of the IHRA examples of anti-Semitism,” along with the IHRA definition Labor adopted in 2016.

Rejected remarks Corbyn wanted  included said:

“It cannot be considered racist to treat Israel like any other state or assess its conduct against the standards of international law.”

“Nor should it be regarded as antisemitic to describe Israel, its policies or the circumstances around its foundation, as racist because of their discriminatory impact, or to support another settlement of the Israel-Palestine conflict.”

During debate, NEC members refused to accept Corbyn’s above remarks and others without amending them.

Many Corbyn Labor supporters opposed adopting the IHRA definition because it inhibits legitimate criticism of unacceptable Israeli actions.

The power of Israel and interests supporting the Jewish state most often get their way in the West – undermining efforts to hold its ruling authorities accountable for high crimes too grievous to ignore.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.