It is interesting the Beast should say Mr Neumann’s story shows that critics of Israel aren’t necessarily anti-Semites and not necessarily anti-Israel, even if anti-Zionist.
Because there are some who are arguing passionately that Israel, Jewry and Zionism are the same.
Perhaps they think it is now the only way they can win their argument that people like Naz Shah and Ken Livingstone are anti-Semitic, after she voiced anti-Israel sentiments following a vicious attack on Palestinian civilians and he… quoted established historical fact at Vanessa Feltz.
I know. When one puts it like that, it’s hard to understand exactly why Ken Livingstone has been suspended by the Labour Party.
Anyway, I asked the commenter on Facebook, Dave Kryński, not to run Israel and Judaism together. “They are NOT the same thing. Will you include Zionism in there as well? All three are different and should be treated as such.”
In response, he wrote: “No they are NOT “different”. The Left would like to think so, but original Zionism was responsible for an Israeli (JEWISH) State. Learn some history before accusing me.”
Anti-Zionist Jews will no doubt wish to dispute his suggestion, as will anti-Israel Jews (by which – and I know I’m forever clarifying in this argument but it is important – is meant Jews who disapprove of the current policies of the state of Israel).
We must ask whether Mr Kryński’s outburst is indicative of widespread feeling.
If so, is the witch-hunt against Ms Shah and Mr Livingstone based in a desire to squash their reasonably-held political viewpoints about Israel, rather than any fictional hatred of Jews?
Neumann’s an American philosophy professor, whose family were the victims of Nazi persecution, and who grew up strong disposed towards Israel.
Neumann is critical of both the establishment of Israel, Zionism and the occupation of the West Bank.
He squarely blames Israel for the … carnage of the wars and terrorism between the two peoples.
Neumann does not argue from this that Israel should be destroyed or abolished. He points to America, which is similarly the result of the genocide, massacre and exploitation. He argues instead that Israel’s existence is tainted, not sacred, but it is protected by the same useful international conventions that allow others, in the name of peace, to retain their ill-gotten gains.
Instead, Israel should ensure its survival by withdrawing from the Occupied Territories.
I realise this is very controversial stuff, but the author’s own family history and his statement that he is indeed pro-Jewish and pro-Israel, should carry weight. If nothing else, it should show that critics of Israel are not necessarily anti-Semites and not necessarily anti-Israel, even if anti-Zionist.
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