Sunday, July 13, 2014

How today's anti-Zonism continues the old antisemitism

By Elliott a. Green

This article was originally published in Midstream magazine [New York] in the Spring 2012 issue

Today’s anti-Zionists like to claim that their stance is something new, something unrelated to the old antisemitism which they typically pretend to reject. They usually claim that they oppose Israel because of its supposed cruel treatment of those Arabs now fashionably called “Palestinians” or of its colonizing Arab land (or “Palestinian land”) or, even deeper into fantasy, of being an “apartheid” state. In other words, it is Israel’s conduct that makes them anti-Zionist.

One problem with these claims is that there never was a “Palestinian people” in all history, although there always was a population of some size or other, however small it may have been, in the land that Arabs and their partisans now typically call “Palestine.”  Indeed, the notion of a “Palestinian people” is a new one and only came into widespread use in the 1960s, especially after the Six Day War.

Leaving aside the historicity of a “Palestinian people,” there are at least three major ways in which anti-Zionism today –as a set of notions or themes-- continues the legacy of the old antisemitism:

1. The Myth of Jewish evil, Jewish original sin, and Zionism or Israel’s original sin.
2. The Alien nature of the Jews, alien wherever they are.
3. Jewish domination whether of society in one country or of the world.

A. The Belief in Inherent, Irremediable Jewish Evil and Original Sin & Israel’s Original Sin

If we focus on European, Western that is, Christian antisemitism, setting aside Arab and Muslim Judeophobia, we see that the Jews’ original sin is their alleged causing of the crucifixion of Jesus, who is typically depicted as ever innocent and innocuous, harmless, meaning to bring only good to the world. The Four Gospels, on the whole and as a whole, despite various contradictions and discrepancies, show that ancient Jews brought about the Roman crucifixion of Jesus. Yet Joel Carmichael (former editor of Midstream) pointed out that many fragments of a different narrative, a different characterization of Jesus, are still scattered throughout the Four Gospels.[i] Jesus in one place is quoted saying: “Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also” (Matt. 5:39 NIV). However, in another place he tells his audience: “I did not come to bring peace but a sword” (Matt. 10:34). Moreover, one of his followers is described as a Zealot (Matt. 10:4), another is called Rock (Simon called Peter = Rock; Matt. 4:18,10:2), two others are the Boanerges brothers, described as “Sons of Thunder” (Mark 3:17; perhaps from the Hebrew Bney Ra`ash). Further, we read that he overturned moneychangers’ tables. So much for the pacifistic Jesus. Nevertheless, Christian tradition stresses the pacifistic, innocent and innocuous Jesus. That characterization of Jesus was hegemonic over the centuries. And it is the view of Jesus as a mild innocent that magnifies the horror of the Jews’ allegedly urging the Romans to crucify him.

Jewish “original sin” naturally gives rise to a belief in inherent Jewish evil. Hyam Maccoby and Joshua Trachtenberg  both analyzed “the myth of Jewish evil.” The first considered this myth in early Christianity in a number of books and articles; the second took up the medieval stereotypes still prevalent in the 20th century, in his The Devil and the Jews (1943).

It may not be necessary to point out, but hatred of Jews based on the crucifixion theme has lasted well into modern times. Consider some of the resistance to Pope John XXIII’s proposed changes to Catholic dogma on the Jews at the Vatican II Conference, 1962-1965. Here is an earlier expression of this mood from the French Catholic La Croix, specifically directed against emancipating the Jews:
To admit the Jews into Christian society is like declaring that the deicide, for which they bear a perpetual curse, no longer has to do with our generation. But if we are Christians, they remain cursed.” (La Croix, 6 XI 1894)[ii]

Georges Montaron, editor of the French “left Catholic” weekly, Témoignage

Chrétien, updated the tableau of crucifixion by the Jews to the Six Day War. He wrote not long after the war in the summer of 1967:

Should Tel Aviv [that is, Israel] need money, the billionaires come together at the foot of Golgotha.[iii]

Golgotha, skull in Aramaic, is the name of the hill where Jesus was crucified, according to the New Testament. The super rich, the billionaires (and we know that the Jews have all the money), support Israel’s acts of crucifixion, chief among them the Six Day War. Montaron had the virtue of writing explicitly what others were insinuating, perhaps in a secular mode and unconsciously. In other words, avowedly “secular” or “leftist” writers may have shared the crucifixion paradigm in Montaron’s mind.

The notion of a “Palestinian people” emerged in the early 1960s but the label did not become dominant in the media until after the Six Day War. The notion conceptually transformed Palestinian Arabs into a separate people. Thus this section of Arabs could be viewed as “underdogs” in the Arab struggle with Israel. The notion left the Arab states off the political stage in the wings and concealed behind the sets and scenery, despite their populations, armaments, oil money and UN influence much greater than Israel’s, not to mention support from other Muslim states, as well as the political influence flowing from control of an essential raw material, oil. The notion also encompassed an identification of this section of Arabs with Jesus (in the Western mind) which would have been nearly impossible if the pan-Arab belief in one great Arab nation had continued to prevail in the West. The cloudy notion of “Palestinians” as somehow connected to the Arabs but separate from them facilitated the view identifying these Arabs as a collective Jesus. They too are innocent, peaceful, innocuous and crucified by Jews, that is, by Israel representing the collective Jew. Georges Montaron entitled an editorial “Jesus Christ, a Palestinian Refugee.”[iv]

This view became common in anti-Israel circles, particularly but not only in anti-Israel church circles. Among the more secular, this view tended to be an unconscious paradigm.

As the “Palestinian people” notion gained momentum after the Six Day War, it allowed public opinion to forget that the actual armed conflict began as a pan-Arab war against Jewish independence in Israel, starting shortly after the Nov. 29, 1947, UN General Assembly Partition Plan recommendation. Indeed, in the first four Arab-Israeli wars –1947-49, 1956, 1967, 1973— the military role of the Palestinian Arabs was relatively minor.

If we examine TV news presentations, consider the BBC. “Palestinians” repeatedly suffer the equivalent of crucifixion by Israel. We see nightly passion plays when we watch TV broadcasts of Arab clashes with Israelis, of Arab violence against Israel and/or Israeli civilians, and the Israeli suppression of or defense against such violence. The “Palestinians”, the collective Jesus, undergo a passion over and over again. The Middle Ages have returned in force, in both religious and secular garb.

Officials and leaders of the PLO have seen the advantage in identifying Jesus as a Palestinian Arab. The official Palestinian Authority paper, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, wrote: “We must not forget that Messiah [Jesus] is a Palestinian, the son of Mary the Palestinian” (Nov. 18, 2005).[v] Nevertheless, this claim has not ensured good treatment for Arab Christians living in the Palestinian Authority zones. But that is another story.

For an example of many news broadcasts about Israel as repeated versions of passion plays, consider the Muhammad al-Durah Case. This affair has also been properly described as a ritual murder libel or blood libel. But a ritual murder libel, like a passion play, is also a recreation of the crucifixion. It also entails a harmless, innocuous, innocent, typically a boy before puberty, and here Muhammad al-Durah fits in with William of Norwich, Hugh of Lincoln, and Simon of Trent. It also typically asserts Jewish use of the murdered innocent’s blood in a Jewish religious ritual, such as eating Passover matsoh baked with his blood. That element is missing from the al-Durah Case although it does turn up in the Damascus blood libel of 1840, where the two victims were not boys but a priest and his servant. A priest of course is commonly represented as an innocent. The advantage for Israel in the al-Durah Case is that the full film of the event, including the “rushes” shown in a French courtroom in Philippe Karsenty’s second trial for libel but not shown on France2 on that fateful evening in September 2000, shows that the boy did not die at the publicly reported time and place, if at all. This is confirmed by other evidence. Pierre-Andre Taguieff, an expert on conspiracy theories and mass delusions, particularly involving Jewish and Jewish-masonic plots, places the al-Durah Affair in the tradition of anti-Jewish frauds like the Protocols forgery.[vi]

Blood also enters of course into the notion of Jews as capitalist blutsaugers common in German Judeophobia of the 19th and 20th centuries up to the Holocaust, and sometimes beyond that horrendous event.

Although today Israel’s original sin is often specified as Jewish settlement in the country –labeled “colonization” rather than immigration—Israel’s original sin was seen after the Independence War as the alleged expulsion of Arabs in 1948. Many people have the image in their minds of Holocaust survivors, cruel, insensitive, brutal, having become Nazis in their turn, descending from refugee boats to drive Arabs or –since the 1960s— innocent “Palestinians” from their homes where they had lived since time immemorial. This narrative misses the fact that the first refugees in Israel during the Arab war to prevent Israeli independence were Jews, starting in December 1947. And that the first refugees in the war who could not go home after it were Jews from the Shimon haTsadiq, Nahalat Shimon and Siebenbergen Houses quarters in Jerusalem, driven out in December 1947-January 1948.[vii] It also misses the bellicose, blood-thirsty Arab threats before and during the war. For instance, Abdul-Rahman Azzam, secretary general of the Arab League, threatened –in the form of a warning of course: “This will be a war of extermination and a momentous massacre which will be spoken of like the Mongol massacres and the Crusades."[viii] Moreover, in the first months of the war the Arabs had the upper hand in the combat and very frankly boasted of it. That fact too is missed nowadays as is what Jamal Husseini, the Palestinian Arab spokesman, told the Security Council (April 16, 1948): The Arabs “did not deny” that they had “begun the fighting. . . We told the whole world that we were going to fight.”[ix]

All in all, it has become chic to see Jews and Israelis as Nazis, as doing to the innocent Arabs, innocent Palestinians, what the Nazis had done to them, etc. To be  sure, this belief is very deeply ingrained among Judeophobes whose own minds could not accept that Jews were innocent victims of the Shoah. That is, among those who resented in any event any sense of Western guilt for the Holocaust. That sentiment was another reason for wanting to see the “Palestinians” as innocents – and to concomitantly see the Jews as guilty of harming them. In other words,   many people in the West felt a psychological need to reject --or divest themselves of--  any sense of guilt over the Holocaust. French mainstream journalist Catherine Nay stated on TV: “The death of Muhammad [al-Durah] cancels, erases, that of the Jewish child, hands in the air before the SS in the Warsaw Ghetto.”[x]

The mental operation of seeing Israelis as guilty enables these people to maintain a sense of their own rectitude, comfortably maintaining the Judeophobic tradition. The fact that the chief Palestinian Arab leader, Haj Amin el-Husseini, had encouraged Eastern European Nazi satellite governments to send Jewish children to Poland (where they would be “under stringent control,” he wrote[xi]) is either unknown to many or felt to be irrelevant. The Arab (or especially the Palestinian) narrative helps to restore and maintain European moral self-esteem.

As early as December 1948, an American academic coming back from the UNESCO meeting in Beirut declared “that the Jews had thrown the Palestine Arabs out of their villages and towns in order to fill them with Jewish refugees.”[xii] It was satisfying or comforting to many to feel that Israel was treating Arabs cruelly or even doing to Arabs what Nazis had done to Jews. Furthermore, alleged Israeli crimes against Arabs were made to seem even worse, when compared with alleged tolerant, even kindly treatment of Jews by Arabs over the centuries. The refrain has long been widespread that, as Walt and Mearsheimer expressed it a few years ago: the Christian West... Jews suffered greatly from the despicable legacy of Anti-Semitism... But ... the creation of Israel involved additional crimes against a largely innocent third party: the Palestinians.[xiii]

This too is false as I, among others, have shown (see my “The Forgotten Oppression of Jews under Islam and in the Land of Israel,” Midstream, September-October 2008). Where the Walt-Mearsheimer claim differs from similar claims made around the time of the War of Independence was that then innocence and kindly treatment of Jews were ascribed to Arabs generally. But viewing Arabs –and now Palestinian Arabs particularly—as historically innocent towards Jews is psychologically helpful for many in the West. The Arab anti-Israel narrative, Arab grievances --true, false, or hyperbolic-- help restore the European self-image, European self-esteem.

Stefano Levi della Torre has stressed the importance of understanding that
. . . antisemitism is a tradition; it is transmitted as a tradition; it persistently progresses, albeit with fluctuations, as does a tradition. That is to say, it is an anthropological-cultural fact of Christian and post-Christian Europe.[xiv]

Levi della Torre understands that the simple fact of the Holocaust and an ostensibly “new Europe” did not erase an age-old tradition. So does Jean-Claude Milner who wrote a provocatively titled book in this vein, Les Penchants criminels de l’Europe démocratique [the criminal inclinations of democratic Europe] (Paris: Verdier 2004).

In the overwhelming intellectual confusion of our times, the “Palestinian people” notion with its sundry connotations has become a mystique. Brendan O’Neill, a reporter for The Australian, demonstrates that the “Left” is not exempt from this mood, this tradition, this mystique. He reports an obsession with Israel on the part of a crowd in London supposedly demonstrating in favor of Egyptians suffering repression by their own government. Yet, the demonstrators in London show that their concern is more with Israel as a hate symbol than with the ongoing sufferings of real Egyptians, albeit they express their hatred for Israel through adoration for Israel’s symbolic antithesis, Palestine:

The speakers had trouble getting the audience excited about events in Egypt. … Yet every mention of the word Palestine induced a kind of Pavlovian excitability among the attendees. They cheered when the P-word was uttered, chanting: “Free, free Palestine!”

This reveals something important about the Palestine issue. … [It] has become less important for Arabs and of the utmost symbolic importance for Western radicals at exactly the same time. (Brendan O’Neill  –The Australian, 16 February 2011)

They chant: Free Palestine; not: Free Egypt. We see that the fixation on Israel as a hate symbol, or on “Palestine” as an adored object, if you like, is facilitated by the notion of a Palestinian people. It is understood that this “Palestinian people” is repeatedly crucified. Indeed, crucified by those who crucified Jesus. The “Palestinian people” notion has become a mystique of suffering and struggle.

Pierluigi Battista sums up the mystique at work here. A widespread mind-set, he writes:

. . . has made the Palestinians –in these years and decades— into, not a historical entity, but the incarnation, the paradigm, the symbol, of the Victim. The emblem of the outcast, the synthesis of all the “wretched of the Earth.” The People par excellence that takes up the burden of all the sufferings, the atrocities, the forced labor that the oppressed peoples undergo. A symbol that necessarily leads to its opposite, to the other protagonist of this drama that is more cosmic than historical, more ideal than real and concrete: the figure, the incarnation, the paradigm of the Persecutor. And if a colossal stupidity is taking hold and spreading about “yesterday’s” victim who is transforming into “today’s” executioner, it is because you, you anti-Zionists have found grounds for reassuring certainties in this grotesque representation of Good and Evil that clash in a universal struggle. . . . It is very difficult to break away from such a toxic Manichean spell.[xv]

B. The Alien Nature of Jews

Indeed, Jews first came to Europe as immigrants, yet the belief that the Jew is alien also grows out of a religious tradition. Kenneth Stow elaborates on the notion of Corpus Christi, the Body of Christ, in medieval Europe. The body of Christian believers belonged to the Body of Christ, while urban communes and political entities were viewed in the same way. [xvi] Obviously, Jews were not and could not be part of the Body of Christ. Hence, they were aliens whose very presence violated the sanctity of the Corpus Christi.

Jews are still perceived as aliens in the West, no doubt with the help of interested governments and psychological warfare services. It is strikingly ironic to realize how Jews were perceived as alien in many European countries 100 years ago. They were then seen as alien precisely because they were Oriental or Asiatic in origin. That means that the Jews originated in what is now called the Middle East. Yet today, anti-Zionists loudly assert that Jews are alien to the Middle East and to the historic Land of Israel in particular. This view seems to be as much rooted in Western tradition as in Arab-Muslim beliefs. To be sure, the conceptions of Jews in both the West and the Arab-Muslim domain are complex. Some Arabs, particularly among Islamists, see today’s Jews as precisely the descendants of the Jews of Muhammad’s time who opposed his new religion.  Jihadists sailing on the Turkish ferryboat, the Mavi Marmara, seeking to break the blockade on Gaza, thereby favoring Hamas, sang a charming ditty on shipboard:

Khaybar Khaybar ya Yahud

Jaysh Muhammad sa ya`ud

[Remember] Khaybar Khaybar O Jews,
Muhammad’s army is coming back

The Khaybar oasis in northern Arabia was inhabited by Jewish farmers in Muhammad’s time who refused to surrender to Muhammad’s Muslim forces and were eventually defeated, despoiled, and killed or enslaved. Thus, fighting Jews is nothing new in the Arab-Muslim imagination. The Jews are seen as hated, despised enemies but not especially as aliens from another continent. Indeed Israelites, later Jews, have lived in the Middle East for thousands of years. Rather, it is the pro-Arabs in the West who are more likely to see the Jews and Israel as alien to the Middle East, insisting that Jews are really Europeans, if not quintessential Europeans, thereby also casting Europe’s sense of guilt for colonialism onto the Jews. Ironically, as said above, 100 and 200 years ago, European Judeophobes saw the Jews as Orientals alien to Europe. Now the Jews are said to be really Europeans alien to the Middle East. The basic accusation remains the same, although the locus of where the Jews are alien has shifted. Essentially, some perceive Jews as alien wherever they are.

More than 200 years ago, Kant and Hegel, the leading lights of German philosophy, defined the Jews as inferior Orientals, as Asiatics, therefore incapable of reason, science, and progress.[xvii] This view was less widespread in France during that Enlightenment period, although shared by Voltaire and d’Holbach. Highlighting the Jews’ alien nature, Kant explicitly described the German Jews as “the Palestinians who live among us.”[xviii]  These were the beginnings of post-Christian Judeophobia, although flowing from medieval Christian beliefs.[xix]

Exemplifying belief in the more recent locus of the Jews’ alien nature is Helen Thomas, a journalist long privileged among the White House press corps. She displayed an especially perverse version of this anti-Zionist belief. She said Jews who live in Israel should "get the hell out of Palestine" and “go home." When asked where home was for Jews, Thomas offered "Poland, Germany...” Perhaps most shocking in her remarks was her assertion that Germany and Poland were “home” for Jews as she disregarded a thousand years of history, culminating in Hitler’s death camps. Moreover, Thomas seemed unaware of the absurdity of her position. After all, as an American born of Lebanese parents, why could she not be told: Go home to Lebanon, by someone speaking on behalf of the native American Indians? Again, like Georges Montaron, what she said explicitly is believed and affirmed implicitly or more quietly by many.

Arguments based on alleged Jewish skin color also emerged to support the notion of Jews as alien to the Middle East. In the 1960s, some extreme “left” and other publications claimed that the Jews (or “Zionists”) had built their homeland in a country of “non-white people.” This insinuated that Jews were “white” in contrast to “non-white” Arabs, and hence did not “belong” in the Middle East. This argument overlooked the traditional Arab self-image as “white” vis-à-vis Black people.[xx] Further, the Nazi dogma of “non-white” inferiority had not stopped most Arab nationalists from allying or sympathizing with the Nazis.

It is interesting in this context, that George DuMaurier’s novel Trilby, a best-seller in Britain in the 1890s, featured a Jewish villain who was both swarthy and personified evil. The villain takes advantage of a pure white, innocent maiden, thus combining the themes of the Jew as dark alien and the Jew as evildoer. Note that DuMaurier identified the swarthy evildoer as a Polish Jew.[xxi]

In fact, a wide range of skin colors characterizes both Jews –including European Jews, Ashkenazim-- and Arabs. Perhaps for this reason, the charge of “white” Jews despoiling “non-white” Arabs is nowadays seldom to be found. But reasoning based on empirical facts is in any case in short supply nowadays, indeed it is out of fashion when speaking of Israel where often unreason rules.

C. Jewish Domination over One Country or over the World

The paranoid notion of Jewish domination is facilitated by belief in a Jewish or Zionist inherent evil and sinfulness and in the Jews’ alien nature. But it has its own history. The classic statement of Jewish aspiration to world domination, the forgery and plagiarism, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, has had an immensely murderous impact. Norman Cohn described this work as a “Warrant for Genocide” in the title of his book on the subject. Their impact has been huge. In the United States, Henry Ford, the wealthy auto manufacturer, produced his own Judeophobic work or pastiche, based on the Protocols, what he called The International Jew. The Protocols came out of a certain ideological/historical background. They did not emerge out of thin air.

As early as 1806, Louis de Bonald, a French Catholic aristocrat yearning for return of the ancien régime, had warned of emancipated Jews obtaining political power which would lead to Jewish domination.[xxii] In 1845, Alphonse Toussenel, a socialist, a follower of Fourier, made the point more graphically. He entitled his book, inspired by Bonald, The Jews, Kings of the Age (Les Juifs, Rois de l’époque). By the late 19th century, the prominence in the economic life of several Western countries of Jews, emancipated not so long before, evoked fantasies of Jewish domination.[xxiii]

John Buchan wrote such a fantasy in Britain, early in World War I. This novelist, the author of mystery-cum-foreign intrigue thrillers, placed Jews at the top of the hierarchy of those plotting a world war. Buchan’s narrator recounts what he heard from a mysterious interlocutor. The Jewish connivers included both anarchists and capitalists. The anarchists

looked to see a new world emerge. The capitalists would rake in the shekels, and make fortunes by buying up wreckage. Capital  . . . had no conscience and no fatherland. Besides, the Jew was behind it, and the Jew hated Russia worse than hell. . . .

“. . . The Jew is everywhere, but you have to go far down the backstairs to find him. Take any big Teutonic business concern. If you have dealings with it the first man you meet is Prince von und zu Something, an elegant young man . . .  But he cuts no ice. If your business is big, you get behind him and find a prognathous Westphalian with a retreating brow and the manners of a hog. He is the German business man that gives your English papers the shakes. But if you're on the biggest kind of job and are bound to get to the real boss, ten to one you are brought up against a little white-faced Jew in a bath-chair with an eye like a rattle-snake. Yes, sir, he is the man who is ruling the world just now, and he has his knife in the Empire of the Tsar, because his aunt was outraged and his father flogged in some one-horse location on the Volga.”

I could not help saying that his Jew-anarchists seemed to have got left behind. . . .

[emphasis added; J Buchan, The Thirty-nine Steps (Edinburgh: Blackwood 1915); chapter 1]

Buchan’s reader might easily infer that in Britain’s enemy of the time, Imperial Germany, the true holder and wielder of authority --the real decision-maker in Kaiser Wilhelm’s Reich-- was a Jew who sat at the pinnacle of power. Buchan’s fantasy conveyed the message that the British Empire was not simply fighting Germany but concealed Jewish power.[xxiv]

In Germany on the other hand, not long after World War I, the Nazis too warned of Jewish domination, pointing to the Protocols. Yet, years after the end of Nazi rule in 1945, a major political leader of Western Europe and the European Community, Charles de Gaulle, explicitly called the Jews: “a domineering people.”[xxv]

Some even feared that the Jews, scattered until then [establishment of the Jewish National Home, circa 1920], but who had remained what they had always been, that is, an elite, self-assured, domineering people, might, once they were reunited on the site of their ancient grandeur, turn the very moving hopes they had formed over nineteen centuries: “Next year in Jerusalem,” into a burning ambition of conquest. (De Gaulle, press conference, 27 November 1967)[xxvi]

Need we add that de Gaulle himself was an imperialist. Perhaps he was projecting. Yet, through the cunning of history, the gist of this statement has been taken up by hordes of those who call themselves “anti-imperialist.”

Whereas the Protocols –coming to prominence in the 20th century—had claimed to reveal a Jewish plot to obtain world domination, in the 21st century, Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer, mainstream academic specialists in international relations, argued that Jews and Israel had already achieved domination over American Middle Eastern policy. This was the thrust of their “working paper” published in the London Review of Books, later expanded and published as a book, or what years ago used to be called a non-book, The Israel Lobby. They did not explain why –if Israel and its friends exercised hegemony over US Middle Eastern policy-- the Bush administration (preceding Obama’s) had asserted that Jews living over Israel’s 1949 armistice line were -- “an obstacle to peace.” Their book or non-book is itself ridiculous and cannot be considered serious research or analysis, the previous reputations of Walt and Mearsheimer notwithstanding. It was generally panned by critics ranging from Walter Russell Mead[xxvii] to Martin Peretz to Jeffrey Goldberg, and even to academics themselves hostile to Israel.

American Communists once argued that Israel was an “appendage of the State Department,” an imperialist tool of the US, as it were. This was not true when Communists asserted it in the 1950s and 1960s. Be that as it may, today’s “leftists” often reverse the claim. That is, they often argue that Jews and/or Israel control American foreign policy in the Middle East to the detriment of US interests. Thus, so to speak, the US government is “an appendage” of Israel.  Yet the claim of Jewish (or Zionist) control of the US has long been a claim made by American Nazis and “ultra-rightists.” The latter favored the acronym ZOG, meaning “Zionist-Occupied Government.” We now view the spectacle of  “leftists” echoing “right-wing” or “neo-Nazi” arguments.

Walt and Mearsheimer made the foolish notion of Jewish control acceptable to many of those who consider themselves right-thinking or bien-pensant. Walt and Mearsheimer were the ones who –more than anyone else-- built the bridge between the “left” and the “ultra-right” on this issue, through their “Working Paper” –available on the Internet-- and later their book It seems that there isn’t much that the State Department or President Obama can say or do to persuade the believers in this notion that it is no more than a myth. Obama and Secretary Clinton’s strictures against Jews living in Judea-Samaria and “East Jerusalem” cannot persuade the True Believer that Israel does not control the White House. Unreason rejects reason and fact. And cannot be persuaded.

Today’s anti-Zionists follow old themes, old paradigms and archetypes of antisemitism, of Judeophobia. Old wine in new bottles.

[i] Joel Carmichael, The Death of Jesus (New York 1963).
[ii] Quoted in Michele Battini, Il Socialismo degli imbecilli (Torino: Bollati Boringhieri 2010), p 21
[iii] Témoignage Chrétien, (31 August 1967), p 4.
[iv] Témoignage Chrétien (18 December 1969). On the “Christianization . . . of the Palestinian people,” see Information Juive, December 2009.
[v] Quoted by Palestinian Media Watch:
[vi] Pierre-André Taguieff, La nouvelle propagande antijuive, Du symbole al-Dura aux rumeurs de Gaza (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France 2010), pp 366-368.
[vii] Elliot Green, “Simon’s Tomb and Jewish Refugees,” Jerusalem Post, December 15, 2010 [ ]; Palestine Post, 4 January 1948 (p 1); Elliott A Green, “France and the Jewish Heritage in Jerusalem,” Midstream, July-August 2005.
[viii] Quoted in I F Stone, This Is Israel (New York: Boni & Gaer 1948); cf. Akhbar al-Yom (Cairo), 11 October 1947.
[ix] Quoted by I L Kenen, Israel’s Defense Line (Buffalo: Prometheus 1981), p 53.
[x] Quoted by Ivan Rioufol, Le Figaro, 13 June 2008.
[xi] Bartley Crum, Behind the Silken Curtain, New York, 1947; 112.
[xii] Joseph Dunner, The Republic of Israel (New York 1950), p 160.
[xiii] Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer, The Israel Lobby (New York 2007), p 92
[xiv] Quoted in  Battini, p 11.
[xv] Pierluigi Battista, Lettera a un amico antisionista (Milano: Rizzoli 2011), pp 24-25.
[xvi] Kenneth Stow, “Holy Body, Holy Society: Conflicting Medieval Structural Conceptions,” in BZ Kedar and RJZ Werblowsky, Sacred Space: Shrine, City, Land (Jerusalem: The Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities 1998).
[xvii] Eliyahu Green, “Reason, Science and Progress; Modern Pretexts for Judeophobia, Left and Right,” Nativ (January 2007; Hebrew); English version at:
[xviii] Quoted in Robert Misrahi, Marx et la question juive (Paris: Gallimard 1972), p 149.
[xix] Green, op cit.
[xx] Black Africa was named in Arabic “Land of the Blacks” (bilad as-Sudan). Also see the framework tale in The Thousand and One Nights, of King Shahzaman and King Shahriyar, as well as “The Ensorcelled Prince” and other tales in that collection.  Also see Bernard Lewis, Race and Slavery in the Middle East (New York: Oxford University Press 1990).
[xxi] On literary depictions of Jews as swarthy and Oriental, see Linda Nochlin & Tamar Garb, The Jew in the Text (London: Thames & Hudson 1995), particularly Brian Cheyette, “Neither Black nor White: The Figure of the Jew in Imperial British Literature,” pp 31-35, and Tamar Garb, “Introduction: Modernity and the Jew,” p26.
[xxii] Battini, pp 34, 37.
[xxiii] Battini, pp 21-22.
[xxiv] On Buchan, see op. cit., Cheyette, pp 31-35.
[xxv] See Raymond Aron, De Gaulle, Israel and the Jews (London 1969), p 9, 22, for a variant, defective translation.
[xxvi] « Certains même redoutaient que les Juifs, jusqu’alors dispersés, mais qui étaient restés ce qu’ils avaient été de tout temps, c’est à dire un peuple d’élite, sûr de lui-même et dominateur, n’en viennent, une fois rassemblés dans le site de leur ancienne grandeur, à chan­ger en ambition ardente et conquérante les souhaits très émouvants qu’ils formaient depuis dix-neuf siècles: L’an prochain à Jérusalem.». For a video of the press conference, see
[xxvii] Walter Russell Meade, “Jerusalem Syndrome,” Foreign Affairs (November-December 2007).

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