Quote of the Day

Dennis Prager, quoting and expanding on Bret Stephens’s explanation of how the New York Times could come to publish an obviously anti-Jewish cartoon:

“The reason is the almost torrential criticism of Israel and the mainstreaming of anti-Zionism, including by this paper, which has become so common that people have been desensitized to its inherent bigotry. So long as anti-Semitic arguments or images are framed, however speciously, as commentary about Israel, there will be a tendency to view them as a form of political opinion, not ethnic prejudice. But as I noted in a Sunday Review essay in February, anti-Zionism is all but indistinguishable from anti-Semitism in practice and often in intent, however much progressives try to deny this.”
Exactly right. As I wrote in “Why the Jews? The Reason for Anti-Semitism” 40 years before Stephens wrote his column, there is no difference between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism. Of course, one can criticize Israel, just as one can criticize any country, but that is not anti-Zionism. Anti-Zionism is not criticism of Israel. It is a hatred of Israel — a hatred greater than that of any other country and a delegitimization of Zionism, the movement to reestablish the Jewish national home. Imagine someone who argued that the establishment of the Italian state — Italy — was illegitimate and who hated Italy more than any other country in the world yet claimed that he was in no way anti-Italian, as he had Italian friends and loved Italian culture. No one would believe such an absurdity.

16 thoughts on “Quote of the Day”

  1. Anti-Zionism is a distant cousin to Trump hatred. Both are swimming against the current of history.

    Jews were the hated “other” for centuries. As a result, if you read “The 10,000 Year Explosion,” the Ashkenazi Jews of Europe were forced into a limited number of occupations that resulted in a higher IQ and talents that became extremely valuable in the 20th and 21st centuries. The “Knowledge Worker” of Peter Drucker became essential to the world of numbers and calculation the past 150 years.

    What followed was wealth and skills that were driven to Israel by the hostility of the Germans and to America by the Russian pogroms. The Arabs has occupied the Holy Land in the wars of the 8th to 10th centuries but had never made much of the land. It was sparsely populated and had no useful products. Mark Twain, in 1867, described it: “.[a] desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly to weeds-a silent mournful expanse….A desolation is here that not even imagination can grace with the pomp of life and action….We never saw a human being on the whole route….There was hardly a tree or a shrub anywhere. Even the olive and the cactus, those fast friends of the worthless soil, had almost deserted the country.”

    The Jews were driven out of Germany, those that survived, and returned to Israel after 2000 years. The Arabs decided to start a war and lost it, twice. The usual results of wars that are started and lost came to pass. The Arabs have been nurtured by the UN for reasons that probably are related to the anti-Semitism of Europe. It has done them no good.

  2. Italy is still illegitimate, as is Syria, Jordan, Iraq. Lebanon is a perpetual basket case. Probably Turkey too. They look like they could fly apart at any moment. The Balkans are always a mess. China has a million Muslims confined in re-education camps. And on and on…

    But it’s Israel they focus on. The UNRWA devoted solely to Palestinians has 30,000 employees and a $1.2 billion annual budget. The UN spends four times as much on Palestinians as they do on real refugees.

    Remember that the 1947 UN partition resolution called for a UN controlled Viceroy to rule Jerusalem. This is the ultimate goal. European Internationalists seizing control of Israel. Pan-Arabism, Palestinian nationalism, two-state solution, “peace process” are all just tools to accomplish the ultimate goal.

  3. A certain subset of Americans have always viewed ‘Europe’ as being culturally and morally superior to the United States; this subset is well-represented among writers, academics, and people in general who consider themselves as being ‘elite’.

    As anti-Israel views–and outright anti-Semitism–have been so normalized in Europe, it was inevitable that people of the above sorts would increasingly view them as acceptable here as well.

  4. The Arabs has occupied the Holy Land in the wars of the 8th to 10th centuries but had never made much of the land.

    It’s worse than that: The land declined because of the neglect and exploitative rule of the Arabs.

  5. It just burns Arab butts to see how few the Jews are, how well they’re doing in Israel, how well their agriculture is doing, and how badly the Jews beat Arabs, when attacked.

  6. It just burns Arab butts to see how few the Jews are, how well they’re doing in Israel, how well their agriculture is doing,

    There, but for Arafat and some other terrorists and the UN, could be the Palestinians. Bill Clinton put enormous pressure on the Israeli leader Barak to compromise beyond safety. Arafat walked away and began the Intifada. Barak’s party lost the next election,. Dennis Ross has written about how they had people lined up to invest in the West Bank. Instead, they wallow in self induced misery and try to harm others.

  7. Its intriguing gmurray Italy is split north to south with the Vatican going it’s own way the UK is split geographically City vs Midlands, and class based. A similar dynamic applies re France the countryside.

  8. The analogy fails. When the Italian state was established, nearly all Italians lived in Italy and always had; almost no non-Italians lived in Italy. Most ethnic Italians still live in Italy, and few non-Italians do.

    By comparison: when the Zionist project started, nearly all Jews lived elsewhere than Palestine, almost no Jews lived there, and many non-Jews lived there. The majority of Jews have never lived in Israel.

    The Zionist goal was, therefore, morally dubious.

    However, Israel is now justified as refuge for Mizrachi Jews displaced from Arab countries, who greatly outnumber Palestinian Arabs displaced in 1948.

  9. I think the comparison of nationalisms is accurate enough. People who have no interest in examining the legitimacy of other states put the Jewish state under a moral microscope. The anti-Semitism lies in this double standard.

    Zionism actually looks pretty good by the ostensible standards of the anti-Semites. Jews were always present in what’s now Israel. When European Jews migrated there in the 19th and early 20th Centuries they acquired land by purchase rather than force, and the local Arab population increased by immigration. The Arabs accuse the Jews of expelling them during wars that the Arabs themselves started and in which the Arabs probably would have killed Jews en masse if they had won. The history of most nations looks worse but the Jews get all the scrutiny.

  10. Italy is split north to south with the Vatican going it’s own way the UK is split geographically City vs Midlands, and class based.

    There’s the Lombardy/ Neopolitan split, but the Vatican is also part of a west/east split between Latins and the Byzantines.

  11. Mike K @May 1st, 2019 at 8:03 am:

    So, you want to give America back to the Indians ?

    1) One can make omelet from eggs, but not eggs from omelet.

    2) There were a lot of morally dubious actions in the establishment of the US. The Cherokee Removal, for instance, and the run-up to the Black Hawk War.

    but most importantly

    3) There were hardly any Indians, compared to the size of the country. In 1800, there were about 600,000 Indians in the entire area of the continental US – about 1 for every 13 sq km. And the Indian population was in decline, largely due to the ongoing impact of Old World diseases. America was almost empty.

    By contrast, there were about 600,000 Arabs in Palestine in 1920 – about 20 per sq km.

    The Zionists wanted to believe Palestine was like colonial-era America (“A country without people”), when it was not. That’s what made the Zionist program morally dubious.

  12. “That’s what made the Zionist program morally dubious.”

    There are no clean hands in this matter. Not the Europeans who committed pogroms against the Jews, drove them out, and then made Israel the “Twice Promised” land. And certainly not the Arab immigrants who have driven out the long-settled Palestinian Christians through violence and cultural genocide. Especially not those Western preening Leftists who have averted their eyes from the barbarities inflicted on ethnically-Arab Christians by ethnically-Arab Moslems.

    There really is no parallel with the European settlement of North America. That was an advanced culture (for its day) meeting a Stone Age culture. There could be only one outcome. We should be careful not to judge the actions of people centuries ago by the standards of today. If a similar advanced culture/Stone Age culture meet-up happened today, we would handle it differently from the way people did hundreds of years ago, mainly because the gap between the Stone Age culture and today’s advanced culture would be so much larger. However, the result would be the same — the relegation of the Stone Age culture to the pages of history.

  13. The Cherokee removal saved them. Had the army not moved the Cherokee they would’ve been annihilated by settlers. There were around 30,000 Cherokee in the 1830s, and today there are close to 300,000 registered tribe members. Compare that to the Seminoles who stayed and fought guerrilla campaigns for decades. Their population in Florida was estimated to be around 5000 or so in the early 19th century, and that is also how many are there today.

    Talk is cheap. Living, breathing people matter more than theories or slogans. A million and a half Arabs are thriving with equal civil rights inside Israel’s borders, but outside their borders war and poverty and strife are the norm.

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