Image 01 Image 03

Among the far-left, Islamists, and violent white supremacists, anti-Israel antisemitism is the common theme

Among the far-left, Islamists, and violent white supremacists, anti-Israel antisemitism is the common theme

Anti-Israel venom has normalized antisemitism, and it’s reached a tipping point. The NY Times cartoon is a sign it’s gone mainstream as well.^tfw

It’s not like we haven’t been warning about this for the ten-plus years Legal Insurrection has been in existence. We have.

In posts too numerous to link, we have warned that the anti-Israel movement, including anti-Zionist and far left-wing Jews, has been so relentlessly demonizing and dehumanizing Israel that they were normalizing antisemitism.

It’s not just that the gross lies about Israel, and holding Israel to a standard no other nation is expected to meet, were in themselves antisemitic. Though that is true.

It’s that there was a thin line between holding up the Israeli Jew as the cause of the worlds’ ills and having that demonization turn into hatred of Jews as Jews. That thin line has disappeared.

There are plenty of culprits.

Without a doubt, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and its related campus faculty and student supporters, such as Students for Justice in Palestine, bear much of the blame. There is a campaign to delegitimize Israel that is staggering in its scope, far beyond what most people comprehend. That campaign of delegitimization is aided and abetted by left-wing anti-Zionist groups like Jewish Voice for Peace, which spread blood libels that Israelis and American Jewish groups are responsible for police shooting of blacks in the inner city.

There is a unifying doctrine behind this campus and leftist activism, “Intersectionality.” I wrote about it in December 2015, How student activists turned anti-rape group into an anti-Israel group:

The phrase “All evil in the world must be traced to Israel” is how researcher Nurit Baytch perceptively characterized the propaganda tactics of anti-Israel activist Max Blumenthal.

It’s a phrase that increasingly characterizes the anti-Israel campus movement. Every real or perceived problem is either blamed on or connected to Israel.

The concerted effort to turn the Black Lives Matter movement into an anti-Israel movement has at its core the claim that Israel is the root of problems of non-whites in the United States. Thus, if a police chief somewhere attended a one-week anti-terrorism seminar in Israel years ago, every act of brutality by a cop on the beat is blamed on Israel. So too, Students for Justice in Palestine protesters in New York City even blamed high tuition on Zionists, leading to rebukes by administrators against such thinly-veiled anti-Semitism.

The Jew once again is made the source of all evil, the conspiratorial puppet-master controlling all and responsible for all. And Israel alone receives such treatment and is used as the link to connect all injustices in the world. That some of the worst perpetrators are Jewish progressives doesn’t change the nature of the attack.

Antisemitic propaganda emanating from Palestinian terror groups, and even the Palestinian Authority, incites another generation not just against Israelis, but against Jews. In Europe, for many years of our coverage we documented how Jews were harassed on the streets by Muslim men shouting Islamist rhetoric, what I called in 2010 Malmö Syndrome.  But now it’s spread beyond that demographic. “Walking while Jewish” is impossible almost anywhere in Europe now.

The energy in the Democratic Party — the Democratic Socialists and their cohorts such as Ilham Omar and Rashida Tlaib — have brought this anti-Israel fanaticism into the heart of a major American political party.

The clearly antisemitic cartoon run in the NY Times is an example of how these anti-Israel antisemitic themes have worked their way into the mainstream media.

Bret Stephens, a regular columnist at the NY Times, took the Times to task, and also pointed out the core problem being the normalization of anti-Israel antisemitism, A Despicable Cartoon in The Times:

The problem with the cartoon isn’t that its publication was a willful act of anti-Semitism. It wasn’t. The problem is that its publication was an astonishing act of ignorance of anti-Semitism — and that, at a publication that is otherwise hyper-alert to nearly every conceivable expression of prejudice, from mansplaining to racial microaggressions to transphobia. Imagine, for instance, if the dog on a leash in the image hadn’t been the Israeli prime minister but instead a prominent woman such as Nancy Pelosi, a person of color such as John Lewis, or a Muslim such as Ilhan Omar. Would that have gone unnoticed by either the wire service that provides the Times with images or the editor who, even if he were working in haste, selected it?

The question answers itself. And it raises a follow-on: How have even the most blatant expressions of anti-Semitism become almost undetectable to editors who think it’s part of their job to stand up to bigotry?

The reason is the almost torrential criticism of Israel and the mainstreaming of anti-Zionism, including by this paper, which has become so common that people have been desensitized to its inherent bigotry. So long as anti-Semitic arguments or images are framed, however speciously, as commentary about Israel, there will be a tendency to view them as a form of political opinion, not ethnic prejudice. But as I noted in a Sunday Review essay in February, anti-Zionism is all but indistinguishable from anti-Semitism in practice and often in intent, however much progressives try to deny this.

Add to the mix the media’s routine demonization of Netanyahu, and it is easy to see how the cartoon came to be drawn and published: Already depicted as a malevolent Jewish leader, it’s just a short step to depict him as a malevolent Jew.

In the mainstream media, on campuses, and in the Democratic Party, this anti-Israel antisemitism is driven almost entirely from the left and from Islamists. But it exists among violent white supremacists as well. The shooters at synagogues in Pittsburgh and California both expressed an intense hatred of Donald Trump because he was too favorable to Israel and Jews.

Hatred of Israel is not a mainstream U.S. phenomenon. Israel remains overwhelmingly popular among the general population.

But among the far-left, Islamists, and violent white supremacists, anti-Israel antisemitism is the common theme.


Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.


ottovongrubner | April 29, 2019 at 3:31 pm

Bret Stephens proves himself a fool by parroting the “accident of a sole editor working in haste” excuse for this heinous cartoon’s publication. It was not a passive, accidental or hasty effort. This was a willful decision made by people who consider this a perfectly acceptable frame of thought.

Oh, and can we, please, dump the phrase “anti-Semitic tropes?” The light connotation of the word trope does not fit with the vile ideology that birthed and nurtured this cartoon.

    tom_swift in reply to ottovongrubner. | April 29, 2019 at 4:20 pm

    I’m afraid “tropes” is going to be this decade’s “in” word, just as “narcissist” was last decades’, and “hypocrisy” the decade before that. It would be nice if users knew what these words mean, but that ain’t gonna happen.

    Personally, I don’t expect much; I’d be happy if the lame “popcorn” jokes were retired.

I must ask: what at this point is the difference between the left and the “far” left?

How would the NY Times feel about having kristallnacht put upon them? A thousand bricks through the windows of the Times offices would be quiate a history lesson, wouldn’t it?

The Times ‘apology’ is b.s. A hundred heads need to roll over there. If they don’t, well, we know exactly what that swamp/leftist/islamic/neo-Nazi axis rag stands for, and we should act accordingly.

    The Times ‘apology’ is b.s. A hundred heads need to roll over there. If they don’t, well, we know exactly what that swamp/leftist/islamic/neo-Nazi axis rag stands for,
    I’ve known what they stand for a long time. They have a love with russia and anything not American. They can’t go bankrupt soon enough.

Far-left, Islamists in union with a left-wing ideology, rabid diversitist, and color supremacists.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to n.n. | April 29, 2019 at 6:17 pm

    It is funny and sad that they think they are superior, entitled to rule the roost, when in fact they are grossly inferior. There is a reason that for the most part Muslims life in their self created shit holes, and once they are allowed into countries which are doing well, they simply create enclaves of ever expanding shit holes just like they had before. Churchill nailed their nature, it has not changed.

I started to notice an uptick in anti-Semitic themed cartoons about ten years ago. The contextual nature these images are leftist tropes built around anti-American or anti-western-capitalist propaganda. The actual components of the images are sourced from 1930’s NAZI propaganda drawings and themes.

A lot of this next generation stuff is generated by Europeans and hosted on EU servers.

And then BBC, Die Welt and NPR notice this stuff and falsely (purposefully) attribute it to alt/far-rightists when the real culprits are white EU anarcho-leftist-Eurasianists like black bloc etc.

anti-Zionism is all but indistinguishable from anti-Semitism in practice and often in intent

So . . . is Stephens claiming that criticism of Zionism as a political program is verboten, in the same way that criticism of Barack Obama’s policies was, ipso facto, “racism”? Are there approved “flags” a critic must append so that a perfectly reasonable political discussion isn’t reflexively denounced as a hatred rant?

Unfortunately, we moved into “the boy who cried Zionism!” territory many years ago. Any attempt, reasonable or otherwise, to discuss Zionism in anything but a fawning, reverential manner was instantly denounced as antisemitism. Now that same effect is being more widely used, but it may be too late to do much about it. On this matter, rationality has long since left the building.

I’m not much excited about Zionism one way or the other, but denouncing something for being what it isn’t is an intolerable tactic when the leftoids do it, and it should be intolerable when anybody does it.

    Milhouse in reply to tom_swift. | April 29, 2019 at 4:54 pm

    As far as I can tell, there are exactly three non-antisemitic grounds on which one can oppose zionism:

    1) Anarchism. If one opposes the existence of all states, then of course one opposes Israel’s existence too. But of course one will be even more opposed to a “Palestinian” state, since it will inevitably be more repressive than Israel is.

    2) Pacifism. If one believes all violence is wrong, even in self-defense, then of course one will oppose Israel’s using force to defend itself and its people. But of course one will be even more opposed to the “Palestinian” violence against which Israel is defending.

    3) Belief in the Jewish theological idea that the Jews were sent into exile by God and must remain there until God declares the exile over and allows them to return home. But of course one will be even more opposed to the “Palestinians” taking advantage of the owners’ absence to invade, occupy, and colonize the Land of Israel and establish a state there.

    Any opposition to zionism as a political program on any grounds but these three can only be motivated by antisemitism. If you can think of a fourth ground please let me know.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to tom_swift. | April 29, 2019 at 6:22 pm

    Zionism is a well justified response to being persecuted.

      Zionism doesn’t need persecution to justify it. Jews have the same inherent right to national self-determination in their native land as any other nation does. If one acknowledges that the French have the right to govern themselves in France, and the Japanese in Japan, then denying the Jews this same right in Judæa can only be an expression of antisemitism. (It’s different if one acknowledges the right, but believes now is not the right time to exercise it.)

LukeHandCool | April 29, 2019 at 4:22 pm

” … anti-Israel antisemitism is the common theme.”

This is quite right.

Case in point: David Duke.

I’m sure he does not look favorably upon Islam and Muslims, to say the least.

But have Congresswoman Omar tweet something sinister about AIPAC or Israel hypnotizing the world and Duke transmogrifies instantly into Omar’s long-lost best friend. He retweets her and tweets in her defense.

Their shared anti-Semitism trumps all their other disagreements and hatreds of each other.

They are enemies with mutual Jew- and Israel-hating benefits.

Speaking of Omar, I wonder if she’s upset that the NYT has disproved her Israel the Great Hypnotist claim.

    alaskabob in reply to LukeHandCool. | April 29, 2019 at 5:11 pm

    Classic “but” used by them.. “Oh we aren’t against Jews, but just against Zionism.” The re-establishment of the State of Israel was almost 2 thousand years in the making and not dreamt up in the last 150 or so years. Hate to break it to the Dukes and Omars of the world… humans didn’t make this happen all by their lonesome.

I would replace “far left” with just “left”.

The point about anti-Israel sentiment having gone mainstream is taken.

Still, I’m surprised a cartoon lousy as this gets so much attention.

I couldn’t make sense of it. Still don’t. It wasn’t clear the dog represents Netanyahu. Its pointed eyebrows are not that great a signifier. A dachshund is certainly not a seeing eye dog. A brace is used for that,a loose leash wouldn’t work. Everyone knows that, even a NYT cartoonist. It’s not clear the dog is leading, it could simply be taken for a walk. Trump is taller than most, not short as a short dog. The whole thing is poorly conceived and just f’k’n weird. The idea is not original. It’s as if a rather dumb child conceived it and an even dumber child drew it. There are literally thousands upon thousands of much better anti-Israel anti-Jewish cartoons already flooding print media, and have been for ages. This is the least of them, actually the poorest I’ve seen. It’s the equivalent of tossing a crap doodle on a heap of serious well conceived caricatures and propaganda. Any Arab with learning disability could have done better than this idiotic poorly rendered cartoon. It’s ineffective as propaganda, it’s terrible as art, and it shows that NYT really is a newspaper by and for retarded people. (This shows even in their crossword puzzle which isn’t even worth the trouble of solving anymore on days Monday through Wednesday. Its like filling out a doctor’s office form.)

    JusticeDelivered in reply to bour3. | April 29, 2019 at 6:26 pm

    how about a cartoon featuring Omar and the other three women as reward virgins, with a martyr pitching a fit that he does not want them, that they are so ugly?

    Trump is shown as blind, wearing a Jewish skull cap. The dog is pictured as Israel’s Bibi.

    The ‘dog’ is leading the blind ‘secret Jew’ around.

    It is a blantant homage to Nazi propaganda.

    An homage should be given to the NY Times in return. A Dresden-inspired fire-bombing by the Allies seems fitting.

    Barry in reply to bour3. | April 29, 2019 at 10:47 pm

    “I couldn’t make sense of it. Still don’t.”

    The poorly read and informed might fail to see “it” at first glance. After a zillion explanations if you “still don’t” then you are either an apologist for the anti-Semitic left or denser than unobtanium.

Does anyone actually believe this B.S?

I understand it. I don’t know why anyone falls for it.

Because it’s so obvious.

Here’s a good read,

About the code breakers who won the battle of Midway. And BTW, after I blew out both my shoulders and hips early on I and lost any chance of being any kind of diver I was a damned good intel officer.

    Arminius in reply to Arminius. | April 29, 2019 at 8:25 pm

    I still kept playing rugby, though. And I don’t have a sane explanation for that. Stubborn pride, I suppose.

    Arminius in reply to Arminius. | April 29, 2019 at 8:29 pm

    Now I am using a walker. And every time I get up off the couch I feel every hit I ever took.

    And I laugh at myself.

Bret Stephens, who is Jewish himself, should have actually announced his resignation from the Times in his column as a real form of protest. Anything less is self-serving and morally bankrupt.

It’s time for Leftists to stand up and be counted. Either unabashedly join the goose-stepping, Jew-hating, genocide-aspiring Muslim jihadists and their gleeful, historically/theologically ignorant and morally bankrupt dhimmi, non-Muslim allies, who rationalize their Jew-hatred under the contemptible and fact-averse conceit of “intersectionality” and contrived/fallacious myths of Muslim victimhood, or, take the only stand that a person possessing a modicum of moral probity can take — firmly and unequivocally against Jew-hatred, in all its forms.

“But among the far-left, Islamists, and violent white supremacists…”

I’d suggest that the “violent white supremacists” are a very tiny part of the problem. They are few in number.

Oh, that horrible treatment of the Palestinians by the Israelis!

Still, we get stories now and again about Egypt discovery and destruction of Palestinian tunneling on the Egyptian border. Yet no one is curious enough to ask why? That the Egyptian border is sealed tighter than Israel’s, and that it is more brutally enforced are things that the Lefties don’t want to talk about.

I’m getting very tired of talking.