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Marcus Leach
Marcus Leach
4 months ago

Musk’s point is perfectly clear. He simply says that Jews who support identity politics and vote Democrat are complicit in a movement the demonises and spreads hatred towards white people.
As Jews are white for the purposes of identity politics, Musk makes the observation that those Jews supporting identity politics are harming themselves and their own community.
There is nothing remotely anti-Semitic in this. Musk’s word’s have been wilfully twisted by the Leftist dominated media, who have been out to get him ever since he stopped Twitter censoring those on the right.

Last edited 4 months ago by Marcus Leach
Andrew Roman
Andrew Roman
4 months ago
Reply to  Marcus Leach

What exactly did Musk say? The media’ interpretation of his comments may distort both what he said and what he didn’t say.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
4 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Roman

I think the gist is when Jews start adopting progressive beliefs, like oppressor vs oppressed, they might not like the result. That’s my interpretation anyway.

Robin Whittle
Robin Whittle
4 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Roman

In the video at: https://www.unz.com/aanglin/in-the-wake-of-elon-affirming-the-jews-are-out-to-get-us-ben-shapiro-plays-good-cop/ Ben Shapiro argues that Elon Musk’s like of the original tweet was antisemitic, because that tweet made a negative value judgement about all Jews. He cites Elon Musk’s follow-up tweets which were more specific and, I think, argues that these – and so Elon Musk’s overall position – are not antisemitic.
The left-leaning mainstream media and political groups are aghast at Elon Musk throwing out the censorious corporate and U.S. government tentacles into Twitter/X which for years have been suppressing views critical of the woke, identity politics, narratives which dominate what now passes for the Left.  So they take every opportunity to claim the company is failing, that Elon Musk is an antisemite or whatever: https://public.substack.com/p/democrats-need-to-censor-and-spread .

Robin Whittle
Robin Whittle
4 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Roman

In the video at: https://twitter.com/stillgray/status/1725224334070071524 Ben Shapiro argues that Elon Musk’s like of the original tweet was antisemitic, because that tweet made a negative value judgement about all Jews. He cites Elon Musk’s follow-up tweets which were more specific and, I think, argues that these – and so Elon Musk’s overall position – are not antisemitic.
The left-leaning mainstream media and political groups are aghast at Elon Musk throwing out the censorious corporate and U.S. government tentacles into Twitter/X which for years have been suppressing views critical of the woke, identity politics, narratives which dominate what now passes for the Left.  So they take every opportunity to claim the company is failing, that Elon Musk is an antisemite or whatever: https://public.substack.com/p/democrats-need-to-censor-and-spread .

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
4 months ago
Reply to  Marcus Leach

Whatever he did say exactly he did not talk about ‘Jews who support identity politics and vote Democrat’. He talked about Jews. That is where the antisemitism comes in. If you had it in for a group of plumbers ‘who support identity politics and vote Democrat’, you would not use it to attack all plumbers as a group. He may well have a point that the white people who support identity politics are indulging in a plot to subdue the group that they, themselves, are part of. But it is not on to blame that on ‘Jews’.

Rob C
Rob C
4 months ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

But hasn’t it been shown that Musk is, himself, Jewish?

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Rob C

No. And he isn’t. And even if he were, it wouldn’t matter one little bit.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
4 months ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

I’m pretty sure he wasn’t referring to all Jews

Judy Englander
Judy Englander
4 months ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Correct. I saw the comment he ‘liked’ and it came across as the alt-right trope that Jews are responsible for identity politics and all that goes with it. I always hesitate before I accuse anyone of ‘antisemitism’, but the comment – like all such tropes – didn’t take into account the many Jewish commentators who oppose identity politics or the many non-Jews who support it. It was the collective ‘Jews’ and identity politics lumped together. Therefore I believe it was antisemitic.

Last edited 4 months ago by Judy Englander
Emmanuel MARTIN
Emmanuel MARTIN
4 months ago
Reply to  Judy Englander

Dear JudeoJudy, you don’t get to decide on the issue, epecially not alone.
And deference to leftist academia is definitely not where you can keep the right border of the Overton window.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago

No but she does get to opine on the issue without some smartass telling her she doesn’t get to decide. And by the way, neither do you.

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
4 months ago

Judy Englander’s impression of the comment at the center of this kerfluffle corresponds with mine. You and I have been reading different accounts.
No need for name-calling. Please.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
4 months ago
Reply to  Judy Englander

Musk then later clarified his comment. You forgot that part.

Martin Johnson
Martin Johnson
4 months ago
Reply to  Judy Englander

Yes, and Musk made a quick, off-the-cuff tweet in agreement. A day or two later he clarified that he was not thinking of all “Jewish” groups, but specifically groups such as ADL that have prioritized Left identity politics over their original missions to support Jews.
X (Twitter) is an environment where short, cryptic messages get misinterpreted all the time. A person in Musk’s position should be more careful in tweeting off the cuff, but that just makes him one of about 200,000,000.
If Ben Shapiro, of all people, is satisfied–as he is–I can be, too.

Last edited 4 months ago by Martin Johnson
harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Judy Englander

I think JE is 100% correct that the tweet was antisemitic. Of course it was, it’s a staple accusation of the very far right. But I don’t think “liking a tweet” matters all that much. Musk has been the best proponent of freedom of speech that we have. Taking him down would be a disaster.

Micah Dembo
Micah Dembo
4 months ago
Reply to  Marcus Leach

Musk is no anti semite. All he said is that there are always collaborators who hope to achieve or keep their social power by joining the winning side. I feel the same way. Hamas and its supporters, in essence, are simply a bunch of thugs and extortionists who care nothing for the Palestinians if there are such a thing. Over the last 20 years they have been paid billions by western governments and the U.N. and other agencies, and all they have done is hold the population hostage and proceed with a Gobbles inspired PR campaign tp create a generation of antisemetic Orcs. Now the Gaza population. The fact is there is no longer any hope of a Palestinian state and all the Palestinian arabs would be much better off as Isralie citizens or Egyptian or Jordanian or Saudi or Iranian citizens. But no one wants them. Why don’t all the rich western kids who love them so much offer a solution?

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
4 months ago
Reply to  Marcus Leach

I thought when it came to identify politics, the Jews advocating for it were quick to claim not to be white.
The motive of those concerned is a more challenging question. It is not uncommon to hear the desire see white populations reduced so that they become minorities in their own countries
As to the article “For almost a decade, this schism has seemed inevitable, with Jewish theology graduates embracing the same “progressive fads” Most of these progressive fads are Jewish in origin

Last edited 4 months ago by Ethniciodo Rodenydo
harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago

No they aren’t. That’s an absurd statement only an antisemite would make. As for the rest, you don’t know what you’re talking about. Jews advocating for identity politics generally do feel the same self-revulsion as other progressive whites. Another epic fail.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
4 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

I am sorry, but the issue was Jews who support identity politics and who are complicit in a movement that demonises and spreads hatred towards white people.
For the last 8 or 9 years and particularly in the last 3, war has effectively been declared on me because I was born white. I was born with the original sin of whiteness from which I cannot be absolved and for which I cannot atone, which if you think about it leave only one unspoken alternative. Best of all if I have the temerity to challenge this new orthodoxy that only confirms my guilt.
However it is still hate even if it is dressed up in pseudo-scientific language, and even if it originates in what passes for academia and finds support in the MSM and seemingly amongst our ruling elites, and I am entitled to ask questions, to lift the veil, to do what I can to identify those behind the attack and ask what drives them.
As to the first point, that many of the Jews who support identity politics claim not to be white, I direct you to the following articles, chosen almost at random from amongst many, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/13/magazine/im-jewish-and-dont-identify-as-white-why-must-i-check-that-box.html  and https://forward.com/opinion/404482/white-jews-stop-calling-yourselves-white-passing/  and https://www.jewishrenaissance.org.uk/blog/beyond-white-other. Case proven beyond reasonable doubt I believe
As to the second point, I suggested that the issue of motivation for the attack of white people was more challenging but suggested one motive was to see the white population  reduce to minorities. Without comment I give you Noel Ignatiev on abolishing whiteness ttps://www.aljazeera.com/opinions/2019/11/17/abolishing-whiteness-has-never-been-more-urgent , Paul Gottfried explaining why many Jews “push anti-white racism” https://twitter.com/Lucas_Gage_/status/1724920359114231828, a picture taken of a chart on the wall of Mark Potok (Southern Poverty Law Centre) showing the decline of the white population of the US, an extract from an interview with Barbra Spectre about how Jews are to play a leading role in turning Europe non-white https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G45WthPTo24&t=13s and the book “You Gentiles” by acclaimed Jewish writer Maurice Samuel available at Amazon https://www.amazon.co.uk/You-Gentiles-Maurice-Samuel/dp/1643701169 in which he “he discusses the dangers presented to Jews by intermarriage with Gentiles, and concludes by saying that there will never be peace between Jew and Gentile until the last European state has “lost its racial homogeneity.” Motives can be many and varied but the point was validly made
As to the third point, that the “progressive fads” being embraced by Jewish theology graduates are mostly Jewish in origin, I give you the leaders of Frankfurt School Herbert Marcuse, Max Horkheimer, Theodor Adorno , Leo Löwenthal and Friedrich Pollock, the ADL, the SPLC and George Soros as a starter. Again point proven I think.
You can, as you did and many have done, hurl accusations of anti-Semitism at anyone who expresses a view that could be deemed critical of Jews or Israel, and it does not wash. All it tells me is that I am shining a light on something you would prefer I people did not see. As I said above, I have had years of abuse directed at me because of my whiteness so I think I am entitled to ask questions, and  I think you need to come clean and declare your allegiances Mr Windy Miller.

William Brand
William Brand
4 months ago
Reply to  Marcus Leach

Calling Israel white is not correct. Most white Jews died in the Holocaust only a remnant remained to establish Israel. Most Israelites were Sephardic Jews expelled in 1948 from Arab countries that were outraged at the establishment of Israel. A large number are black Jews from Ethiopia. That African country was full of black Jews. Most of them came from the Northern Lost tribes. During the Babylon exile, there was a Jewish temple at Elephantine in Egypt that may have had the ark of the covenant. As they moved north, they carried the ark, and it now lies in a church in Ethiopia. Israel admitted all of these black Jews and there were a lot of them.

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
4 months ago
Reply to  Marcus Leach

Specifically picking out the Jews in the progressive political and cultural movement, and not the greatly more numerous white members, is an indication perhaps of unconscious anti Semitism. Holding Jews to a higher standard than anyone else is subject.

Phil Re
Phil Re
4 months ago

A good article, but we can go further in one regard. The example of the so-called Jewish Voice for Peace is instructive. This is a well-funded, hard-left hate group that uses its titular Jewishness to provide camouflage for its fellow travelers. It produced the “Deadly Exchange” campaign in 2014, which fictitiously attributes police brutality in the US to law enforcement exchanges with Israel. After the death of George Floyd, it distributed a map of Jewish sites to mainly Muslim protesters in San Diego and other cities. Its members have been allowed to hold panels on campuses in which they tell Jewish students that the antisemitism they’re experiencing isn’t real. The purpose of their agitprop is to normalize antisemitism and to dissolve the normative fabric of the West. JVP’s budget comes mainly from the Open Society Foundations and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
4 months ago

“Life of Brian” anybody?

Rafi Stern
Rafi Stern
4 months ago

So which are you from – the The People’s Front of Judea or Judean People’s Front? Part of the genius of The Life of Brian is that the script shows familiarity with stories of the Roman occupation of Judea as told by the Rabbis and by Josephus.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
4 months ago
Reply to  Rafi Stern

Well now that you ask neither. I would undoubtedly have been on the side of B*ggus D*ckus, the Legatus Augusti pro praetore.

Red Reynard
Red Reynard
4 months ago

Fwow him to the gwound fenturian 🙂
Absolutely priceless:-))

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
4 months ago
Reply to  Red Reynard

Surely unacceptable in this day and age to derive humour from a speech impediment?

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
4 months ago

Certainly not.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
4 months ago

That was me with someone else’s woke hat on

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
4 months ago

This is a thought-provoking article. Thank you, Prof. Kotkin, for posting it. Just for the record, I believe you made an error of fact regarding the Union for Reform Judaism. It did not call for an immediate ceasefire but supported Biden in his call for a brief humanitarian pause: “We join in the call from President Biden and Secretary Blinken for Israel to implement a humanitarian pause to ensure that food, water, medicine, and other humanitarian aid can flow more quickly into Gaza. Likewise, the Reform movement joins them in a belief that a ceasefire at this moment would be a tragic mistake and a strategic advantage to Hamas in its quest to eliminate the Jewish state.” https://urj.org/press-room/reform-movement-calls-swift-release-hostages-humanitarian-pause-hasten-aid-palestinian
Happy Thanksgiving.

Milton Gibbon
Milton Gibbon
4 months ago

Not sure the Black Hebrew Israelites are a good example of anti-zionist Jews. Calling yourself a jew does not make you one. A bit like the Nation of Islam calling themselves muslims. It might be true semantically but it does nothing for understanding of the issues within Judaism because these people believe in radically different things to the mainstream.

Similarly, is it “extreme Orthodox Jews” who oppose zionism or just a (minority) branch of Orthodoxy which the writer disagrees with?

Judy Englander
Judy Englander
4 months ago
Reply to  Milton Gibbon

The ‘extreme Orthodox Jews’ he refers to are one tiny sect – Naturei Karta with their fur hats and side curls – who are always trotted out at demos to provide a strong visual image of Jews against Zionism. I can see what’s in it for the organisers but not what’s in it for Naturei Karta. The ultra-orthodox usually like to keep a low profile.

Last edited 4 months ago by Judy Englander
harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Judy Englander

Satmars, who are a much larger group, also oppose the existence of the state of Israel, certainly theologically. They may be shifting on a practical level.

Judy Englander
Judy Englander
4 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

Yes, but the Satmars don’t turn up at anti-Israel demonstrations.

Peter Samson
Peter Samson
4 months ago

It’s ibn Khaldun’s tribal mentality that’s the problem. Solidarity with your tribe while living nomadically in the desert might have made sense in 1300, but it’s a recipe for disaster today. We inevitably live now in mixed communities and need to reject us-versus-them thinking and practice. Judaism ought to be a religion, not a locus for tribalism.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Peter Samson

Judaism isn’t a locus for tribalism. But people who have a problem with Jews always talk about how tribal they are. If anything, it seems to me it’s the Muslims around the world who are being tribal supporting inhumane butchery.

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
4 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

Ridiculous to say Jews aren’t tribal ! Look how hard it is to convert to Judaism . Even liberal Jews or secular Jews are quite tribal . But then so are pretty much everyone else . Which is why monocultures are more harmonious than multicultural societies experiencing mass migration

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
4 months ago
Reply to  Peter Samson

That is just naive. Multicultural societies are massively tribal , which is why they work less well than monocultures . How can you say the Jewish religion isn’t tribal ? Good grief

William Hickey
William Hickey
4 months ago

Now that they have a successful and capable state of their own, Jews must come to grips with the fact that they are no longer the Top Victim.

In practical terms that means the cult of the Victim no longer serves them, nor does the Oppressor-Oppressed binary.

It’s time to drop that old moral framework, which is after all just an 80-year postwar invention, and devise a new narrative that better preserves the unity of the Jewish people.

Ray Andrews
Ray Andrews
4 months ago

“For instance, a significant portion of liberal and centrist Jews rightfully object to the poor treatment of non-Orthodox Jews, as well as the relentless march of the settlers in the West Bank.”
Yes. Articles such as this — and I’m reading several like it every day — would have it that the current wave of ‘antisemitism’ is just Jew hatred plain and simple. That’s a lie. Sure, ‘plain vanilla’ antisemitism is always there, and we do have the brainless twits of the woke left who automatically know that brown people are always the good guys even if they do burn babies, but some honesty would help: There is also, finally, a worldwide movement of decent, liberal, democratic people — very many of them Jews — who think that the oppression of the Palestinians needs to come to an end, Hamas notwithstanding.

H simmens
H simmens
4 months ago
Reply to  Ray Andrews

Hamas notwithstanding does a lot of the work in your comment.

Nardo Flopsey
Nardo Flopsey
4 months ago

Another ancient Arabic proverb: “Me against my brother; me and my brother against my cousin; me and my cousin against the world.” This applies quite well to all Semitic tribes.

Howard S.
Howard S.
4 months ago

“My mind in made up. Don’t confuse me with the facts.” … V.K. Krishna Mennon, quoted in the New York TImes many years ago.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
4 months ago

Why must all Jews support Israel unconditionally? Apart from sharing a religion why should a Jewish person raised in London or New York, who has never set foot in the Middle East, never be allowed to criticise the policies of a completely foreign country?
I often criticise the left for their willingness to treat any ethnic minority as a homogeneous bloc who should all think and vote the same way, but it appears the right expect the exact same of any Jewish person

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

If you have any knowledge at all of their particular history you would start to understand.

Caradog Wiliams
Caradog Wiliams
4 months ago

The problem being that there are a lot of different histories. How far do you go back?
European Jews have had a bad time but not African Jews or Jews who have lived in the Middle East.
At some time history stops and today takes over.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
4 months ago

Not sure you are right there. Jews in the Middle East were second-class citizens in a Muslim empire. Rather less well treated, at a guess, than Israeli Arabs. It would take a historian to tell us whether they were really free from persecution for all of that time.

Last edited 4 months ago by Rasmus Fogh
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
4 months ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Well you say that but in Muslim conquered lands Jews were granted special privileges’ over and above the Christians

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
4 months ago

Over the Christians – but well below the Muslims, presumably? It would take a historian to evaluate just how safe and relatively privileged lives Jews had over the many centuries of Muslim rule. I am not one. Are you?

Anyway, Caradogs claim seems to be that it is not true that Jews, as a group, have a history of persecution, so there is no reason for them to feel threatened or to show particular solidarity to each other. Quite apart form the fact that Jews are definitely threatened in Muslim lands today, it would take more than a fairly unsupported claim for one particular realm in one particular period to override the actual experience of the people themselves.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago

No they weren’t. More BS. Both Jews and Christians were “people of the book” and were treated equally as 2nd-class citizens, dhimmis.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
4 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

No you are wrong again
Take any city conquered by the Muslims, say Rhodes, there was always a Jewish quarter inside the walls while the Christians were most certainly outside

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
4 months ago

European Jews have had a bad time but not African Jews or Jews who have lived in the Middle East.

This is a myth. Jews living in the Arab world suffered just as badly as European Jews throughout history and particularly after the rise of Wahhabi ideology in the nineteenth century.

Gorka Sillero
Gorka Sillero
4 months ago

“European Jews have had a bad time but not African Jews or Jews who have lived in the Middle East.”
not sure if you are intentionally lying or just showing your ignorance on the topic. Either way, you do show your true colours with this comment

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago

African and ME Jews also have had a bad time, just not nearly as bad as their European co-religionists. And yes, today should take over. Israel has been a country for 75 years. People should stop drooling over the possibility of its annihilation.

Leejon 0
Leejon 0
4 months ago

There is only one history, and lots of bullshit.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

I think it’s totally fair to criticize settlers taking territory in the West Bank. I think a lot of Jews inside and outside Israel criticize it as well.

Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh
4 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Perhaps, but these criticisms are hard to take at face value when they are accompanied by complete silence on other, larger scale, human rights abuses, including against Arabs and Muslims.
Just in the last decade, 600,000 Arabs have been killed by other Arabs in Syria, and 250,000 Arabs killed by other Arabs in Yemen. These figures are multiples higher than the entirety of the number of Arabs killed in the conflicts with Israel since 1947. Meanwhile, Pakistan has announced it intends to expel 2 million refugees back to Afghanistan. Ancient Christian communities are literally being cleansed across the
Middle East. Over 1 million Christians have been forced out of Iraq. None of this is of any interest because it can’t be blamed on Jews. “Displaced Palestinians”? Join the club. After 1948, all the Arab states expelled 900,000 Jews, representing 99.9% of all Jews. How about a
Right of Return? Many millions of Indians were displaced to create Pakistan in that same period of 1947-8.

Last edited 4 months ago by Stephen Walsh
Ray Andrews
Ray Andrews
4 months ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

Yet you use those examples as deplorable things, yes? So how, then, do they justify more of the same? Do two wrongs make a right? Jews lament their mistreatment, and then turn around and inflict the same on the Palestinians while claiming to be the more civilized people. If Jews are more civilized, then they should not draw examples of how to behave from the worst episodes of human history. Timur buried alive the populations of entire cities ergo the IDF burying alive a few thousand Gazan kids is obviously OK, yes?

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
4 months ago
Reply to  Ray Andrews

I do not know if you noticed, but the Palestinians were doing a fair bit of mistreatment of their own. So Israel went to war as a result, and war is terrible, even if you try to limit the damage (as Israel has done. How many Palestinians do you think they could have killed if they had tried?).

But the main question is: What would you propose that Israel should have done instead? And what do you think Hamas would have done as a result? Israel does have a primary duty to try to safeguard the lives of its citizens – and the primary duty to safeguard Palestinian lives does fall on their own government – Hamas – not on Israel. I know that Jesus said ‘If anyone slaps you in the face, offer him the other cheek’. But would he also have said ‘If anyone r**es and murders your sister, offer him also your daughter’?

Last edited 4 months ago by Rasmus Fogh
Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
4 months ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

That’s what I don’t get with progressives. They are literally supporting the oppressors of Palestinian people in Gaza. Hamas has caused more suffering in Gaza than the Israelis ever will.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

He won’t answer; they never do.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Ray Andrews

Utter rubbish. It’s you who expect Jews to have learned some lessons from their own genocide. You’re just another anti-Israel obsessive who completely ignores the butchery of 1200 Jews, the sort of thing that would set any country at war with the perpetrators. I don’t recall the Abbasid Arabs having butchered thousands of Mongols before Timur buried their cities.

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
4 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

Ok the mongols under Timur and earlier Genghis Khan were worse than Netanyahu . We’ll grant you that

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
4 months ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

I fully support Israel and its war with the monstrous barbarian Hamas. It does not make them above reproach. The US has done more to deliver freedom and prosperity than any other nation in the history of the world. It’s still done some pretty crappy things too.

Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh
4 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Perhaps. But it is difficult to accept such criticisms at face value when they are accompanied by complete silence on other human rights abuses, including against other Arabs and Muslims, just because these can’t be blamed on the Jews. 600,000 Arabs killed mainly by other Arabs in Syria. 250,000 killed so far in Yemen. Almost 2 million Afghan refugees facing expulsion from Pakistan.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

And no serious supporter of Israel says otherwise.

Rafi Stern
Rafi Stern
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Two reasons.
1 – Jews have been praying and waiting to return to Palestine/Israel/Judea for two millennia. Not all Jews agree with the way it was/is being done but most wish it well.
2 – Half of the World Jewry live there, so the better and for worse the fate of the The State of Israel and its Jews matter to most Jews.
I agree with you that it is wrong to attribute collective thinking and collective responsibility to all Jews everywhere. The joke runs that two Jews have three opinions. And that’s fine. As an Israeli Jew I request basic tribal solidarity from our Jewish brothers and sisters. I also think that Israel as a state doesn’t do enough to reciprocate this. There will always be an inherent tension, but just as Israeli society was pulling itself to pieces just months ago, but knew how to unite under a common threat, I would like to see that in all directions in all quarters between the wider Jewish tribe.

Judy Englander
Judy Englander
4 months ago
Reply to  Rafi Stern

Very well said, Rafi.

Rocky Martiano
Rocky Martiano
4 months ago
Reply to  Rafi Stern

I’m curious as to why Israelis believe that ongoing security in their homeland can only be attained by militarily means.
Do they not realise that obliterating Hamas (if indeed that can be achieved) will simply create another generation of potentially even more violent jihadis, determined to eliminate Israel and perpetuate the hatred of the last two millennia? Why have their elected governments of the last 30 years shown no genuine interest in any initiative aimed at securing a lasting peace?
Surely the example of Northern Ireland shows that it can be done.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
4 months ago
Reply to  Rocky Martiano

Israelis have tried very hard to find peace. Unfortunately, no Arab leader can agree to it because, as Yasser Arafat put it: ‘I can’t sign that, they’ll kill me’.
Neither side in Northern Ireland were followers of a religious ideology that specifically mandates the slaughter of their opponent as does Wahhabi Islam where Jews are concerned.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
4 months ago
Reply to  Rocky Martiano

I’m curious why you believe that Israel could achieve security by making a deal with Hamas.

In Northern Ireland the deal was made with the terrorist group. The IRA was eventually convinced that a continued terror campaign was not going to lead to victory, and that they had a good chance of getting their United Ireland eventually by democratic/demographic means. In Palestinians terms that is a one-state local government with power-sharing, continuing British sovereignty and a commitment to give the IRA everything they wanted if they could win a referendum on it. Meanwhile both sides could rely on the UK/Eire to keep them safe from a hostile take-over, and to take over government any time that the power-sharing government broke down.

To do something similar in Palestine you would have to convince Hamas that they could not win by continuing terror, and that they were more likely to obtain their goals by peaceful means. But there is no external power who could keep sovereignty and guarantee the rights and safety of both sides while the game played out. Anyway, the Israelis would never, ever accept a one-state deal with a commitment to give the Palestinians full control of the country if they could win a referendum – they’d end up massacred or expelled. So Hamas cannot hope to get what they want from a deal. And it is Hamas, and its followers, that you need to convince to get a peace. It is not enough to convince the peaceful majority of Palestinians (even assuming that there is one). As long as there is a sizable group of violent Jihadis ‘determined to eliminate Israel and perpetuate the hatred’, there will be continued war. A peace requires either a change of heart in Hamas (Ha!) or someone on the Palestinian side with the determination and the strength to suppress Hamas and keep them from doing further atrocities and/or reigniting the war. And in the absence of that, perpetual war may look to Israel like the better bet.

Of course a peace also requires someone on the Israeli side who can suppress the settler movement and keep them from reigniting the war. That is not necessarily easy, considering that the democratic choice of Israel for years has been pro-settler governments, and that the settlers or their friends were the ones who killed Rabin to prevent a peace deal. But for Israel, with a large group willing to give up the claim to all the land and a strong civil society, there is at least a reasonable hope.

Last edited 4 months ago by Rasmus Fogh
Desmond Wolf
Desmond Wolf
4 months ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Interesting thoughts. What do you make of the prisoner swap under way right now? Could this indicate that Hamas has more interest in peace than we might have thought? And if not, does it at least make those who were calling for a ceasefire (or at least some alternative approach to all out war) earlier on here sound not quite as deluded as most were suggesting they were? I may be speaking prematurely, but I understand that 25 hostages have already been released thanks to this pause in fighting, brought about partly through international pressure (ie what a blessing for the hostage families that not all western leaders share the average unherd commentator’s views on this)
Now I’m imagining you’ll claim that the evident effectiveness of this temporary ceasefire (for the hostage families at least) would not have been possible without Israel’s demonstration of strength the last few weeks, but I struggle to see that given that from the start Hamas have been clear that they would not consider a prisoner swap without a cessation of Israel’s military operation.

Last edited 4 months ago by Desmond Wolf
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
4 months ago
Reply to  Desmond Wolf

I think that Hamas has zero interest in peace. Their aim is to exchange the hostages in return for the maximum possible concessions, and causing maximum political damage to Israel, suffer minimum damage themselves, and prepare for their next attack. A ceasefire, a cessation of hostilities (until Hamas thinks the time is ripe for starting again on their terms) would be a major victory for Hamas. They would have proven that they could slaughter a lot of Jews and Israel could not get rid of them in return. For now they settled for what they could get, 50 hostages in return for four days. That gives them a respite to resupply and regroup, allows them to get the news media in to showcase the (quite genuine) suffering of the Palestinian population, and gives them a chance to use diplomatic pressure to prevent Israel from restarting the war. Which for them would be a victory.

It is clear that making a ceasefire and exchanging hostages minimises the casualties over the next few weeks. The problem is how the calculation goes in the longer term. In return for the release of Gilad Shalit in 2006, Israel released over a thousand Palestinian prisoners, including the current leader of Hamas. I wonder how many have been killed by those released prisoners since then?

Last edited 4 months ago by Rasmus Fogh
Desmond Wolf
Desmond Wolf
4 months ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Well most of Palestinian prisoners are ordinary women and minors convicted for throwing stones (and two accused of murder) so not sure how much of a threat they pose.
Your analysis sounds fair otherwise. It’s not a good situation but I’m not sure what a better alternative is. As you say, I’m sure Hamas will try to regroup during this time and then, everything going the way RS below suggests, be ready to launch an attack like the October one at some later date. BUT I don’t see how a full scale invasion – even one that takes out all the leaders (many of whom aren’t even there) – will be any more successful in the long run in ending Hamas (quite the reverse given how many revenge-thirsty parents this confluct must have already created).
In anticipation of your point that this is what we did to get rid of the Nazis, well no, German bitterness at the end of the war was seen off by a ton of marshall aid and help with rebuilding efforts. Again, name me one conflict against an insurgent resistance that has ended well for the foreign offensive without some kind of peace deal? Northern Ireland? Vietnam? Afghanistan?
For all this I am back to thinking a ceasefire is the best way forward, followed up by efforts from the rest of the world to try and grow the more moderate sections of Gaza (businesses), reverse the occupation of the West Bank (ie Israel’s constant breach of the supposed ceasefire over there) and perhaps some mass population exchange, in the manner of that successfully brokered between Greece and Turkey (1919-22).

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
4 months ago
Reply to  Desmond Wolf

There was a ceasefire in place Oct. 7. What’s the point if one side doesn’t respect it? If this is a ceasefire rather than a pause, I can only assume Israel has met its objective with the war.

Rafi Stern
Rafi Stern
4 months ago
Reply to  Desmond Wolf

The Hamas stated purpose when they opened this war was to secure release of all the Palestinians held in Israel. Their initial offer was all the 240 hostages in return for some 6000 prisoners. Israel’s response was a “no” and counter-attack with the stated goal (that nobody believed (not Hamas and not the Israeli public) of fighting this time to the end – that Hamas would have no fighting force left and all its leaders captured or preferably killed.
In the weeks that followed it became apparent that this was likely what was going to happen, so Qatar stepped up its efforts and Hamas and Israel agreed to a Hudna of 4 days, release of 50 women and children for 150 imprisoned women and children (aged 14-18) not including murderers (though many are in for attempted murder).
Israeli public opinion is split on this with most people seeing it as a necessary evil to do business with Hamas and a partial deal. Some point out that as soon as you do business with Hamas, you are on the slippery slope to eventually agree a ceasefire. Many fear that restarting fighting after the end of the Hudna will be difficult globally-politically. The military point out that without clearing Khan Yunis of fighters we will not have achieved anything. What is at stake is that people will not go back to live in the Otef ‘Azza: the land bordering the Gaza Strip.
What Hamas gets out of this is a vital breather to regroup, re-supply and prepare. Qatar will then offer an extension in return for more hostages and another and they hope the indefinite pause will turn into a full ceasefire with them still on their feet and at least half of their fighting force still alive and equipped. They then hope to engineer a come-back as well intentioned Westerners pressure Israel to allow a Palestinian Authority to take over Gaza and pump in loads of money to rebuild the city… and its military infrastructure. And then we start all over again.

Desmond Wolf
Desmond Wolf
4 months ago
Reply to  Rafi Stern

Thanks that was informative. See my comment above to RF which is in part an answer to yours

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
4 months ago
Reply to  Rocky Martiano

The two state solution has been rejected repeatedly by Hamas and the PLO, not Israel.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Rocky Martiano

Surely not. Big differences in culture. Also, you nail your sentiments to the mast by asking why Israel’s governments have shown no genuine interest in peace — they have, in 1999, 2000, and 2008. All offers rejected out of hand by palestinians without even a counteroffer — without even acknowledging that it is the Palestinian side that has been rejectionist since before 1947 and continues to be so to this day, as exemplified by Hamas’ threat to continue massacring Israelis whenever they’re able to.

Leejon 0
Leejon 0
4 months ago
Reply to  Rafi Stern

Quite right. You also have the right to request support from any civilised person too, and you have mine. Rape and murder should never be tolerated, it should be punished.

Desmond Wolf
Desmond Wolf
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Yes and why does supporting anything Netanyahu does make you not anti-semitic? There have been plenty of anti-semities (from Holoc*ust mastermind Reinhard Heydrich to Victor Orban) who were perfectly happy with Jews – so long as they were fighting Arabs abroad and not living here among us.The existential threat the Nazis thought the Jews posed was not through their existence anywhere in the world but in their ‘infiltration’ of German society.

Last edited 4 months ago by Desmond Wolf
Desmond Wolf
Desmond Wolf
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Ignore this comment – I accidentally posted the above twice (why isn’t there an option for deleting comments?)

Last edited 4 months ago by Desmond Wolf
Martin Johnson
Martin Johnson
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

All you are seeing is normal disagreement among people who have something, but not everything, in common. Nobody is trying to stifle other opinions, but everyone is trying to persuade others to their side.
Given the history, some of this is painful, but in the Jewish discourse people are not being repressed. There is no central authority that could do that, anyway.

O. M.
O. M.
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Your question strikes me as very secularist and very modernist in its nature. Sure, if you subscribe to the view that the perimeter of your life is where it all starts and ends, then yeah – why should a Jewish Londoner feel anything when it comes to Israel? However, if you can’t help but feel like a part of the reason you exist is because of the Judaic culture, in its multiplicity, that survived and persevered, you just might get affected when it looks like the bastion of this culture is under threat. That’s how I would explain to myself why many Jews around the world might care, if you will.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

You know nothing. Jews around the world criticize israeli policy regularly. But the vast majority support the existence of Israel, as they should, because if/when the countries they live in turn against them — and that is not as farfetched as it used to sound — they need a sanctuary.

Desmond Wolf
Desmond Wolf
4 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Yes and why does supporting anything Netanyahu does make you not anti-sem*tic? There have been plenty of anti-sem*tes (from Holoc*ust mastermind Reinhard Heydrich to Victor Orban) who were perfectly happy with Jews – so long as they were fighting Arabs abroad and not living here among us.The existential threat the N*zis thought the Jews posed was not through their existence anywhere in the world but in their ‘infiltration’ of German society.

William Brand
William Brand
4 months ago

The Orthodox Jews who say that Israel must not be established until the Messiah comes should reminded that Christ came in the year 0. His return is imminent, and Jews will have 7 years to convert the world to Christianity after the born-again Christians fly off to heaven. God ordained the creation of Israel. He may have ordered the Holocaust to chase the Jews back to Israel. Too many European Jews had forsaken him to follow Marx and communism. Most Communists in the 1930 period were Jews. God punished the Jews for this. It’s the sort of collective punishment he often did in the bible. All the signs listed in Revelation show the Apocalypse is nigh. The biggest is the recreation of Isarel. The prophesy of the valley of dried bones living is fulfilled. Next event: We now are seeing some of the prophet Daniel’s prophies being fulfilled. The invasion of Israel by Gog (Probably Russia) and the Gog army being broken on the mountains of Israel by what sounds like Neutron bombs.

William Brand
William Brand
4 months ago

What Israel should have done was to cut off the water supply to Gaza. Destroy any wells and Desalination plants. Add sea blockade. Do not enter Gaza. Thirsty people will come out begging for water. Make them emerge naked to ensure that they are unarmed. Hang any identified as Hamas. As thirsty people come out, load them aboard ships. Place them in lifeboats off the coast of Iran. Let Iran live with its new minority group. Equip them with risk collars to ensure behavior. GPS equipped location monitored. Remote monitoring by satellite. Explosive anti tampering. Any attempt to remove or damage collar fatal. Attempts to get away from satellite signal fatal. Remote detonation command available. Failure to recharge collar radio fatal. An AI can keep track of all inmates. Collars contain Satellite phone to enable inmate to contact parole officer and receive orders or ask permission to do something. Collar to warn inmate when he is in improper place or proximity to forbidden collared person. Inmate must pay a cell phone bill and for his collar. Musk star link can provide collars and monitoring. Since inmate is free to get a job and live at his own expense he can afford to pay for his collar and monitoring expense.

Last edited 4 months ago by William Brand
Leejon 0
Leejon 0
4 months ago
Reply to  William Brand

So this is why the words of st. John the mad were included in the bible, to catch out those who didn’t bother reading the other 26 books
.

Walter Schwager
Walter Schwager
4 months ago

This article confuses anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism, an old and tired failure to recognize important differences in an attempt to score political points.

Sue Sims
Sue Sims
4 months ago

In principle, it should be perfectly possible to separate anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism, and some of the Haredi do just that: there should be no state of Israel until ha-Masciach comes. Outside Judaism, there’s very little separation: those who oppose Israel (not just specific policies, but Israel in toto) will use ‘Israel’ and ‘Jews’ indiscriminately, and attacks on synagogues and individual Jews outside Israel demonstrate the lack of distinction made by anti-Zionists/anti-Semites.

Ray Andrews
Ray Andrews
4 months ago
Reply to  Sue Sims

“Outside Judaism, there’s very little separation:”
That’s because Israel defines itself as the Jewish state. Also, it’s comparable to the way that American Germans were attacked during the world wars without anyone bothering to ask them where their loyalties were — as Germans they were convenient targets for anti-Nazi rage.

harry storm
harry storm
4 months ago

It’s becoming exceedingly clear that antizionism IS antisemitism. It’s just the most recent mask, which lately has been slipping a lot.