Opinion: anti-Semitism is false, whether it comes from the right or from the left

A makeshift memorial near Chabad of Poway after the deadly anti-Semitic shooting of 2019. REUTERS / John Gastaldo

We know right-wing anti-Semitism through cries of “you will not replace us”. Left-wing anti-Semitism is carefully worded in criticizing Israel for “human rights violations.”

Leftists deny anti-Semitism, citing free speech to criticize another nation; however, the examples of anti-Semitism from the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance reveal this “free speech” ploy as a sham.

History reveals the development of anti-Semitism over 2,000 years. Anti-Semitic tropes range from bloody libel, world power, the slayer of Christ, clanism, and double loyalty; horny superstitions, sexual prowess, and contact contamination; cultural stereotypes about nose size, red or curly hair and more.

All groups can report prejudices and stereotypes. These become pernicious when they form barriers, justifications for expulsions and mass murder. Jews were expelled from many countries from the 8e century BC (from Samaria by King Tiglath-Pileser III) to ancient Rome, France, Portugal, Austria, England, Haiti and up to the last century in the Middle East.

And why? Force conversion to another religion? Occasionally. Unexplained hatred? Occasionally. Maintain racial purity as expressed in Germany for an ethno-nationalist Aryan culture? All of them were motivations for hatred of the Jews.

What about the hatred of Jews in the United States? Cloning anti-Semitism into different outfits suggests a different logic for everyone. The logics of the left and the right require a diversified vision of this virulent disease.

Right-wing anti-Semitism is generally straightforward. A typical statement was expressed by Andrew Anglin before a walk in Whitefish, MT, in 2016:

“Right now, my guys are saying we’re going to be able to get around 200 people together to take part in the march, which will be against Jews, Jewish businesses, and anyone who supports either one.” The commentary was accompanied by a graphic of the entrance to Auschwitz, a yellow Star of David and the word “Jude”.

It is the naked hatred of the Jews. And that hatred was broadened with the slogan: “You will not replace us.

According to the Anti-Defamation League, “The slogan speaks to a number of issues that preoccupy white supremacists – the preservation of the white race and white cultural history, and their fear that whites will become a powerless minority in the face. to change. demography. “

Left-wing anti-Semitism is generally masked by intersectionality, where groups perceived as marginalized find solidarity in oppression. And the Jews, who fought hard to be accepted in America, are now questioned as sufficiently oppressed.

For example, in an action filed with the EEOC last year, Jewish mental health workers at Stanford University sought to have anti-bias trainers include anti-Semitic content with anti-Semitic content. black. However, committee members “justified the omission of anti-Semitism by insisting that unlike other minority groups, Jews can hide behind their white identity.”

Another way to hide anti-Semitism is to attack Israel as an oppressor since, according to the argument, one can criticize a country like Israel and not be anti-Semitic. This approach recently surfaced in a resolution passed by a San Diego community college teachers’ union that claimed not to be anti-Semitic but launched statements that, based on the Department’s definition and examples of State, are in fact anti-Semitic. A similar resolution was rejected by a national union earlier this summer.

The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance provides examples of how such anti-Semitism can be spotted, including:

“Apply double standards by demanding behavior of him that is not expected or required of any other democratic nation.”

The San Diego union resolution states:

“However, let’s be clear: condemning Israel for its ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, occupation, apartheid and war crimes is not anti-Semitism.”

If the resolution were honest, it would point out that the small state of Israel is quite different from the surrounding Arab and Iranian states with over 200 million people compared to a state of 12 million with around 20% Arab population. Israel is democratic where many of its neighbors are not, especially Palestinian communities.

Israel did not indulge in a slow elimination of the Christian populations, but welcomed Ethiopians and Russians as well as the persecuted Muslim offshoot of the Baha’i faith. Israel is holding a gay pride parade while neighboring Arab countries have oppressed its gay population.

Where is the condemnation of Hamas from Gaza for indiscriminately launching over 4,000 rockets at Israel? Where is the condemnation of Hamas from Gaza for executing dissenting voices? And the list continues.

Obviously, there is a double standard and only Israel is singled out. It is hatred of the Jews in another form.

It is time to condemn all forms of anti-Semitism.

Joe Nalven is a former associate director of the Institute for Regional Studies of the Californias at San Diego State University.

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