…because it increasingly seems that the first 3 digits must be one, nine, and three.
Denis MacShane, a British member of Parliament, writes:
Hatred of Jews has reached new heights in Europe and many points south and east of the old continent. Last year I chaired a blue-ribbon committee of British parliamentarians, including former ministers and a party leader, that examined the problem of anti-Semitism in Britain…Our report showed a pattern of fear among a small number of British citizens — there are around 300,000 Jews in Britain, of whom about a third are observant — that is not acceptable in a modern democracy. Synagogues attacked. Jewish schoolboys jostled on public transportation. Rabbis punched and knifed. British Jews feeling compelled to raise millions to provide private security for their weddings and community events. On campuses, militant anti-Jewish students fueled by Islamist or far-left hate seeking to prevent Jewish students from expressing their opinions.
More worrisome was what we described as anti-Jewish discourse, a mood and tone whenever Jews are discussed, whether in the media, at universities, among the liberal media elite or at dinner parties of modish London. To express any support for Israel or any feeling for the right of a Jewish state to exist produces denunciation, even contempt.
Once again, the children of Israel are the canaries in the coal mine of Western Civilization.
Traditional anti-Semitism was motivated in part by the feeling that Jews were “different” from their surrounding societies. But a lot of the modern hate of Israel–much of which has bled over into outright anti-Semitism–is motivated by the belief that that country is too similar to the societies in which its European and American opponents reside. Many leftists oppose Israel not in spite of the fact that it is an economically-successful, technologically-advanced, Enlightenment-based capitalist democracy, but because of these factors. These are the same things they dislike about their own societies.
Note also this statement in the MacShane document:
…the bulk of the West’s university intelligentsia remains hostile to the Jewish state.
Western democracies, and particularly the U.S., have invested heavily in universities in part because of a belief that higher education tended to reduce prejudice and to encourage more universalist attitues. It is not at all clear that things have in practice worked out that way.
Previous What Year is This? post here.