266. Criticism of Israel isn’t anti-Semitism

On Feb. 13, The Journal News published two articles by Gary Stern concerning anti-Semitism.

The impression a fair-minded person gets upon reading them is that the accusation of anti-Semitism has been used as a political tool by Israel's apologists to fend off any criticism of Israel for its appalling behavior in the occupied territories.

"It is widely agreed," one article states, "that European support of the Palestinians morphed into general anti-Semitism." By the same logic, we should say that American support of Israel morphed into general anti-Islam; and that Jewish opposition to Mel Gibson's film "The Passion" morphed into anti-Catholicism etc. Such reasoning is nonsense.

As long as Jewish organizations consciously blur the distinction between Israel and Judaism, criticism of Israel will be perceived by the public at large as anti-Semitism.

The American Jewish Committee went a step further. The same article states: "A recent AJC publication explored the mixing of anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism as a 'new frontier' of bigotry." AJC now is trying to blur the distinction between Israel and America.

Since when can opposing the policies of a country be characterized as "bigotry"?  This can only happen if this country is America or Israel since the same report says: "Anti-Americanism functions in much the same way anti-Semitism has over the centuries." This is a worrisome development.
It is very doubtful that the Jewish lobby will ever be mature enough to admit that a difference exists between anti-Semitism and the criticism of Israel.

February 24, 2004