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OPEN LETTERS TO OAKLAND "ANTI-SEMITISM" CONFERENCE! - by Jeffrey Blankfort; & Jim Harris
by Posted by Joseph Anderson
Friday Aug 20th, 2004 7:01 PM
I met with anti-Zionist Israeli activists in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, all of whom I informed, as an example of the sorry state of affairs on this side of the water, about the subject of your upcoming [Oakland "Anti-Semitism"] Conference on what is alleged to be anti-semitism on the part of what passes for the left in the United States.
Facing A Challenge Within:
A Progressive Scholars' and Activists' Conference on Anti-Semitism and The Left.

August 21 - 23, 2004
Oakland Marriott Downtown
Oakland, California

http://www.facingachallenge.com/schedual.htm


Re: "Anti-Semitism and the Left" - Oakland "Anti-Semitism" Conference

Friday, August 20, 2004

Dear Judy Andreas, Conference Co-ordinator:

I have just returned from three weeks in the Occupied Palestinian lands of the West Bank and Gaza, where I saw the effect that Israel's apartheid wall, it's continued theft of Palestinian land, and its Jewish-only roads in the West Bank have had on the lives of Palestinians. In Gaza, I saw the wreckage of what had been scores of homes and farms that had been destroyed by Israeli bulldozers, and spoke with and recorded the voices of those now forced to live in tents as they try to salvage the broken pieces of their lives.

Later, I met with anti-Zionist Israeli activists in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, all of whom I informed, as an example of the sorry state of affairs on this [US] side of the water, about the subject of your upcoming conference on what is alleged to be anti-semitism on the part of what passes for the left in the United States. (If there actually was a "left" of any substance in the US, such a conference would be laughed out of existence, since the notion that Jews are an oppressed group in the US, which seems to be your basis for organizing the conference, is palpably false by any reasonable standard.)

Judging from the agenda of the conference, the Israelis with whom I met, as well as I, would, no doubt, be considered self-hating Jews by your conference attendees, particularly since bringing justice to the Palestinian cause has a higher priority with the former than does maintaining what has been described as "the Jewish character" of the State of Israel. In fact, not only does that not seem to concern them at all, they would think, as I do, that the latter is the root of the problem.

Given that they are a tiny minority, it is nevertheless significant at this point in time, that in one instance, over 200 Israeli Jews, academics, journalists, etc., have signed a statement, drawn up on August 12, 2004, and known as the Olga Statement (named for Givat Olga, the location in which it was written), which recognizes the legitimate rights to live, in the land now called Israel, of those Palestinians who were expelled or fled from their homes in what was then called Palestine in 1948, as well as their right to participate as equals in determining the future of the whatever state will exist on that soil.

Another group, known as Zochrot (ref. Ha'aretz Magazine, 8/13/04), which has been in existence for more than two years, has been going throughout Israel, placing markers on the spots where more than 400 Palestinian villages once stood, explaining how the inhabitants of each village were driven from their homes in 1948 and their villages were destroyed. This, of course, has not stood well with most of their fellow Israelis, who would rather forget the crimes that were committed in creating the state of Israel and that continue to be committed in maintaining it. Zochrot ("Remembering" in Hebrew), formed originally by an Israeli reservist who had refused to serve in Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 1982, also supports the Palestinian right of return, a position that, judging from your conference agenda, would be considered "anti-semitic," or, at the very least, offensive to "Jewish sensibilities."

All Jewish sensibilities, of course, are not the same. My own, for example, accumulated over 70 years and admittedly in the minority, were offended by a statement attributed to you in the August 6, 2004, issue of J, the Jewish Bulletin, in which you "emphasized that while the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will certainly play a major role in the conference, no solutions or statements will be made regarding it."

And, as if that were not enough, in a follow-up letter to J (Aug. 13, 2004) you were anxious to make sure of that point, noting that the magazine's headline ("Unlearning anti-Israelism") "may have left the impression that the conference holds a position relating to Israel, Palestine or the conflict. It is important to know that the conference itself has taken no position on these issues."

Excuse me, but I find that "position" morally repugnant. But rest assured, I will not be attending such a conference.

Jeffrey Blankfort,

San Francisco, CA


=============================================
=============================================


Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Re: "Facing the challenge?" - Oakland "Anti-Semitism" Conference

Judy [Andreas, Conference Co-ordinator],

I appreciate that there may be noble intentions behind this conference. We do need to unite against any forms of racism, including any form of hostility towards Jewish people. I do not pretend to know fully what will take place at the conference, or what perspective speakers and workshop leaders will be sharing with the participants. Yet, from my reading of the Workshop titles, and what has been written in the media about this conference so far, I have reason to be concerned.

I have seen a number of attacks against Jewish people here in the Bay Area, yet it has all stemmed from the work on behalf of justice in the Middle East. A Berkeley city official, a Jewish father of a young child, pleads for an investigation into the death of human rights advocate Rachel Corrie, and receives a phone threat. A man writes to the Berkeley Daily Planet and accuses Jewish individuals he names, because of their work for Palestinian rights, as “Jews who hate Judaism”. Speakers with the most extreme anti-Arab-Muslim stances and pro-militaristic, pro-torture solutions are invited on Berkeley campus by Hillel, and Tzedek, a Jewish group that was actually affiliated with Hillel, is forced to leave the organization when it questions the choice of speakers. And a few years ago on Berkeley campus I saw dozens of copies of a leaflet that advocated “retaliation” against those Jews who criticized Israel. (I gave a copy of this leaflet to the police for them to investigate, but it was of no concern to the pro-Israel group I approached).

These are real incidents of hostility against Jewish people, and yet this is not what the conference will address, it appears to me. Neither does it seem to address the attacks that non-Jewish dissenters are subject to, especially Arab-Americans, and the way anti-Semitism is used to fight any questioning of U.S.\Israeli policy. It does not address, for example, the fact that large, established organizations such as the ADL are quite openly advocating policies that are viciously anti-Arab, and yet calls itself a fighter against anti-Semitism.

It is in this context that you say that there is “a prevalence of unchallenged anti-Semitism on the Left"? I just confess to being mystified by your apparent position. Despite claims that this conference is opposed to all forms of racism, there is a workshop that says that all must embrace Zionism, a political movement that has dispossessed millions of their land, homes, and their dignity. But then it promises silence on international issues. No dissent will be expressed here to oppose U.S./Israeli policy.

This conference, from what I can see, is as helpful to the cause of justice as those who warned obsessively about “communists” in the civil rights movement. I am concerned it will be used to stamp out dissent. Despite the participation of some good speakers, it just seems unlikely to be helpful.

Jim Harris,

http://www.tomjoad.org/

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Aaron S
Saturday Aug 21st, 2004 1:50 AM
For more discussion of this issue, see:
 
by Joseph Anderson
Saturday Aug 21st, 2004 1:32 PM

OPEN EMAIL TO OAKLAND "ANTI-SEMITISM" CONFERENCE!
- by JA Saturday, Aug. 21, 2004 at 1:22 PM

http://www.indybay.org/news/2004/08/1692588.php

EXCERPT:

Jews are *NOT* an "oppressed" minority group in the United States. As an African American I can say this as a matter of fact, while still opposing incidents of real anti-Semitism, which do exists, and exposing real anti-Semites, which I have done. To say that Jews are oppressed in America is anywhere from an insult to a joke to those traditional minorities of color in America who really are oppressed.
 
by Jim Harris
Saturday Aug 21st, 2004 4:13 PM
Please see this post, or go directly to the website, for more information on the Olga Statement referred to by Jeffrey Blankfort.

I think it is important to support such positive initiatives.

The "facing a challange" conference that we find in some ways troubling, will in no way impede or slow down our work in seeking justice for Palestine. I do not think it will have even a minimal impact in stopping the growing realization in the progressive community that we must end support Israeli apartheid.
 
by Nate Collins
Sunday Aug 22nd, 2004 3:12 AM
To address anti-semitism in any real and honest way entails first and foremost confronting anti-Arab and anti-Muslim racism which is yes a form of anti-semitism, and in distinction to anti-jewish injustice is actually a reality in todays world and deserves to be addressed. Claims of anti-jew hate and injustice are shallow attempts at glossing over the everpresent crimes of the State of Israel and perpetuating myths of perpetual jewish victim status.



If anyone has any intention to seriously address anti-semitism the first, most blatant, prevalent and obvious anti-semitism is that racism aimed at Arab and Muslim people. Yes Arabs, those other semitic people you didn't hear about, the avowed and persecuted enemies of the state of Israel are none other than a semitic people. So I would like to counter all the whimpering and crying about “crimes against jews” and get real for a second and SHOUT ONE TIME about the real and not made up anti-semitism of the white Israeli government! You wanna talk about the biggest most racist anti-semites in the world, that would be the State of Israel in their persecution of Palestinians, those darn persistent semitic cousins of the Jews.
Where did this Israeli society and government come from anyways? Why it came from Europe and it came to conquer non-white lands, and rule over non-white people and it did this rather recently. Gee no wonder the injuns over there are still trying to skin the whites, they haven’t been completely wiped out yet and they already got em all in camps and reservations within a couple years. Now that’s quick conquerin’ boy. There were Indian wars here about a hundred years ago, and that was 125 years into this here re-pub-lick. Israel’s been around for 50, I’m surprised their not getting battered, but I forgot the anomaly, no not God on their side, they got the backing of the most powerful ally of all, the good ole U S of A. But they are still prone to everpresent and consistent whining and crying about racism against them and their people and their perpetual status as victims. The poor white victims that they are, Jeeeezus, their reasoning is about as good as that other viciously oppressed white group in America, the nazi white supremacists. All I can say is Boo Hoo.
The State of Israel is the purveyor of some of the most disgusting behavior in the modern era, some of the most blatant and persistent ethnic cleansing, and they are still claiming to be underdogs. Hatred of extremist Jews is a self-fullfilling prophecy, by violating everyone elses rights, manipulating and claiming racial supremacy, they have done everything to ensure that they will be hated, and rightly so. Then they claim to be acting on behalf of all jews and claim that all jews hold their same beliefs even though they are the most extreme, and because of their manipulation other Jews will undeservingly be harmed by the repercussions of their crimes, seems to be what is happening inside of the State of Israel when non-combatants are killed there.
Hatred of Extremist Jews is progressive hate, it is a good thing, entirely necessary.to fight these criminal conspirators. On the other hand, anti-semitism that is on par with Nazism is that which comes from the right wing to further genocide and conquest. Anti-semitism that is on par with Nazism should certainly be challenged. That anti-semitism which is on par with Nazism is coming from the right wing governments of the US and Israel and is aimed at Arabs and Muslims.
That hatred and readiness for action against oppressive State power and repugnant social politics, it is spreading on the left and the namby pamby assimilationists should be worried. They should probably be having conferences about it too, but there is one correction, it’s not called anti-semitism, It's called Cajones. God save the King, the day it arrives on the left.
 
by Honest Guy
Sunday Aug 22nd, 2004 7:49 AM
are indicative of the immorality and subhumanity of today's left. When so-called "people" like him start burning synagogues, physically attacking and killing Jews as they are doing in France and throughout Europe (where anti-Jewish attacks FAR OUTNUMBER those directed against Muslims as all hate crime surveys show) the only proper response is to track him and others down and CRUSH THEIR SKULLS! Find Nate Collins, Jeff Blankfort, Joe Anderson and others and give these fascist neo-nazi ANIMALS exactly what they've got coming to them!
 
by gehrig
Sunday Aug 22nd, 2004 10:43 AM
What do you _possibly_ hope to gain by such transparent trollery?

@%<
 
by A Concerned Jew
(anonymous [at] indybay.org) Sunday Aug 22nd, 2004 12:32 PM
Articles like this one -- and its stream of commentary -- sadden me.

I read this as completely denying the existence of anti-Semitism (ok, and let's not split hairs about what the term means -- "anti-Semitism" meaning rhetoric and actions directed against Jews motivated only by the fact that Jews are Jews; i.e. racism against Jews).

This is simply absurd. Regardless of your opinion on Israel, it is simply a denial of fact to believe that Jews are and have not been an oppressed people for many, many centuries in many, many places.

This is simple historical fact, well researched and documented. Seriously -- no matter who you are -- if you don't know anything about the history of Jews, you should probably be reading up on it.

I'm not saying this to invalidate anyone's point of view; I'm saying it to educate. The best way to confront your "enemy" is to know his/her worldview, right? The more you know, the stronger you are.

Just consider it...
 
by Jeff B
Sunday Aug 22nd, 2004 2:27 PM
This comment is typical of those Jews who would have us believe that the history of Jews for the past 2000, 3000, 4000 years, depending on who is making the point, has been nothing but unmitigated suffering which was only relieved by the ascendancy of Zionism and the creation of Israel which, unfortunately required the expulsion of the Palestinians from their land in 1948 and the continued confiscation of their land up to the present moment.

As the late Israeli professor and Nazi Holocaust survivor Israel Shahak pointed out, "I don't think the Jews have suffered any more or any less than many other persecuted or minority nations. We have suffered like many other peoples have suffered...There were some periods when we suffered more..there were periods when we suffered much less......"

Any looking at the position of Jews in the US (as well as in other Western societies) would have a hard time denying the incredible political and economic power that it's organized factions wield over its governing institutions and the media, even without considering the tiny percentage of Jews in the national population. The fact that some people are anti-Jewish for one reason ot another does not translate into oppression of Jews unless those people are in a position to act on it and desire to do so. There is not the slightest evidence of this in US society.

Now, of course, that foregoing statement is considered a classic example of anti-Semitism (or, self-hatred in my case) when it comes from one of Israel's critics, such as myself, but not when it comes from one of Israel's supporters such as JJ Goldberg, editor of the Jewish national weekly, Forward (http://www.forward.com) whose book, "Jewish Power" should be required reading for the paranoids who will be gathering at the Oakland Marriot this weekend to complain about "anti-Semitism on the left."

I will add to their "evidence" of such by repeating a statement made to me in 1988 by a Native American leader (who, for his safety and reputation, will go unnamed) after the so-called left and peace organizations, Marxist and non-Marxist, of the Bay Area refused to issue a statement condemning Israeli occupation during the first year of the first Intifada. What he said rings true today: "The problem with the movement is that there are too many liberal Zionists." To which, I add, Amen!
 
by ny pagan jew
Sunday Aug 22nd, 2004 4:49 PM

born in nyc, no problem being a jew there.

moved to exas, much antisemitism there.

now in california, no problem at all.

it all depends on where you are.

but compared to the holocaust committed by the zionist regime or against african americans here at home, what i've suffered as a queer and a jew is insignificant.

jews survived well in diaspora--good survival strategy. when we concentrate we make more of an easier target.

 
by AFP
Sunday Aug 22nd, 2004 6:29 PM

Arsonists burn Jewish center in Paris: 'Islamists' make claim

Sun Aug 22, 5:41 PM ET


(AFP) - In one of the worst recent anti-Semitic attacks in France, arsonists destroyed a Jewish center in Paris after daubing it with racist graffiti and swastikas, provoking condemnation by the entire political class Sunday and touching off a manhunt for the attackers.

An Arabic-language statement posted on an Islamic web site said the attack was carried out by "a group of young mujahedeen" (fighters), but the claim could not be independently verified.

President Jacques Chirac strongly condemned "this indescribable act" and underlined "the absolute determination" to capture the perpetrators "so they are judged and convicted as severely as possible".

The center, situated in an apartment bloc in a popular quarter of eastern Paris and adjacent to a synagogue, was both a community center and a restaurant for poor members of the Jewish community.

About 50 firefighters took an hour to extinguish the blaze early Sunday.

"When the smoke cleared, we discovered anti-Semitic inscriptions in several places and we called the central police laboratory," one of the firefighters said. Officials said that had the fire spread to apartments above, many lives would have been at risk.

Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin, who visited the scene, said it was "an insult to see swastikas at a time when we are celebrating the liberation (in World War II) of our country."

The owner of a cafe 20 meters (60 feet) from the center, said the building was a home for many old and poor Jews in the area, which is within walking distance of the historic Jewish area in the Marais district.

"They are doubly traumatized because they lived through the roundups during the war, and now they have this fire," he said.

The attackers daubed swastikas in red ink on two refrigerators and badly spelled anti-Semitic slogans such as, "Without Jews we would be happy," and "The world would be pure if there no more Jews," according to police and a rabbi at the synagogue.

The statement posted on the Internet in the name of the Jamaat Ansaw Al-Jihad al Islamiya (Group of the Holy Islamic War Supporters) said the attack was "in response to racist acts by Jews in France against Islam and the Muslims" and "as a simple response to the racist and savage acts by Jews in Muslim countries like Palestine."

The cultural center was a meeting place for the large Sephardic community in Paris. "It was a place full of spirit and life for our community," said Claire Romi, a member of the Judeo-Spanish association that uses the center. "To see it like this breaks my heart -- it's a whole piece of our history that has collapsed," she said.

In Jerusalem, the chairman of the The Jewish Agency for Israel, Sallai Meridor, urged France to "act forcefully against the perpetrators of anti-Semiticism, who are turning the lives of many French Jews into a nightmare."

Meridor said political statements were not enough. "The French legal system must change its attitude without compromise and hand down deterring punishments against the perpetrators of these crimes."

Assistant prosecutor Philippe Maitre said the arsonists risked 20-year prison sentences. Paris police chief Jean-Paul Proust, who visited the scene, vowed: "We will find those responsible and take them before the courts."

The attack seemed certain to worsen diplomatic relations between France and Israel, which were rocked last month when Israeli Prime Minister Arieli Sharon urged French Jews to move to Israel to escape "the wildest anti-Semitism."

The country is home to Europe's biggest Jewish and Muslim communities, estimated at 650,000 and five million respectively, out of an overall population of 60 million.

The number of anti-Semitic acts committed in the first half of 2004 has soared, according to interior ministry statistics, with 135 acts of physical violence against Jews and 95 against north African and other ethnic groups.

Incidents this month included a swastika painted on the ground in front of the Notre-Dame cathedral in Paris, and swastikas and anti-Semitic messages painted on 60 Jewish graves in Lyon allegedly by a neo-Nazi Frenchman who turned himself into police.

The mayor of Paris, Bertrand Delanoe, who also visited the crime scene, said, "Nazi and anti-Semitic inscriptions daubed around the centre are revolting."

And the Representative Council of Jewish Institutions in France, the community's central body, said there was no reason to doubt the "stupid and criminal" motivation of those who burned down a soup kitchen. "It was hatred of the Jews that animated them," the council said.

Copyright © 2004 Agence France Presse. All rights reserved.
 
by Antifascist
Sunday Aug 22nd, 2004 7:39 PM
"Jeff B" is of course Jeffrey Blankfort-a close friend of awowed Nazis and holocaust deniers Wendy Klanbell and Israel Shamir. He shares their positive assesment of David Duke's approach to Jews and Judaism (i.e that they should be decimated and destroyed) as his mirroring of Duke's views about Jewish "control of the media and financial system" make clear. It is people like Blankfort and his associates who are responsible for the widespread acts of terror directed against Jews in France (far outnumbering Anti-Muslim assaults in a country in which Muslims vastly outnumber Jews), inevitably claiming that such attacks are either "staged by zionists" or "if real" that the Jews-all Jews!-deserved them because of Israel's misdeeds. In other words, Blankfort, Klanbell and Shamir are neo-nazi subhuman scum of a type very prevalent in the Bay Area and on today's left. The only appropriate response to these "people" is to see that they are thoroughly and utterly CRUSHED!
 

Honest Guy, Sunday, Aug. 22, at 7:49 AM: "Find Nate Collins, Jeff Blankfort [Jewish], Joe Anderson and others [Jewish and non-Jewish] and give these fascist neo-nazi [hey, isn't it "anti-Semitic" to call a Jew a "Nazi"...?] ANIMALS [...and certainly an "ANIMAL"] exactly what they've got coming to them!"

When I came out here to the Bay Area, I discovered the irony that Zionist Jews often behaved the way those Zionists typically attributed to *Arabs*!!

The only everyday 'terrorism' in the United States is that perpetrated by Zionists and the pro-Israel lobby against anybody with status who criticizes the European-initiated, settler-colonialist, nationalist political ideology of the state of Israel: i.e., Zionism. It's the terrorism that attempts (often successfully) to, indeed, "CRUSH" -- through political terrorism, economic terrorism, character-assassination terrorism (as with ironically and so-called "Antifascist" against Jeff Blankfort), vandalistic terrorism, and/or physical threats terrorism -- the articulation of an opposing perspective and its critical analysis; this, so that other people cannot even compare and intellectually, historically, and morally weigh the two perspectives.

In short, it's would-be *CENSORSHIP*, because any public debate or comparison -- beyond indymedia, onto the television screens of the mainstream/corporate media and into millions of American households -- would easily reveal Zionism and the apartheid state of Israel for what it is.
 
by Honest Guy
Monday Aug 23rd, 2004 6:47 AM
As you can see, all of my points were confirmed. Joseph Anderson does not even bother to deny the Pro-nazi allegiances of Jeff Blankfort-e.g his friendship with Klanbell and Shamir (both associated with the National Alliance), his positive assesment of David Duke's views about Jews, his "protocols of the elders of zion" approach to discussing the Jewish so-called "domination" of the media and American politics. This are confirmed beyond a doubt. Also likely are the involvement of they and/or their followers in recent anti-Jewish attacks in the Bay Area, e.g Assaults on Jewish students at Berkeley, rocks thrown through synagogues, swasticas on liquor stores etc. Of course, Nazi Jeffrey will claim that every one of these incidents was in fact "staged by zionists and the ADL" just as his friend Klanbell says about what she labels the "hollow cause". It is of course no more anti-semitic to label such vermin (Jewish-born or otherwise) neo-Nazi scum than it would be "racist" for Joe Anderson to label Clarence Thomas an "Uncle Tom". Blankfort is the moral equivalent as a supposedly "Jewish" person.
 
by gehrig
Monday Aug 23rd, 2004 7:41 AM
Guy: "This are confirmed beyond a doubt. Also likely are the involvement of they and/or their followers in recent anti-Jewish attacks in the Bay Area, e.g Assaults on Jewish students at Berkeley, rocks thrown through synagogues, swasticas on liquor stores etc."

You're doing a damn fine impersonation of nessie, flinging around serious charges like rice at a wedding, with nothing but nebulous guilt-by-association as an excuse.

What do you _imagine_ you're accomplishing?

@%<
 
by Nate Collins
Monday Aug 23rd, 2004 10:41 AM
Exactly, we need less zionists on the left so all we need to do is speak honestly on the topic of Dirty israel and their shallow cries of 'victim' and all the zionists come out of the woodwork foaming at the mouth. Zionism is a racial supremacist right wing ideology that has no place in progressive discourse except to be denounced. Evidence of the savagery and incivility of zionists is their foul actions, repugnant words, and uneasy demonic demeanors. These zionists are becoming more hated and unpopular the more they rear their ugly heads. The more the world learns about dirty Israel, the more the world says NO! All zionists please continue to open your sewage spewers and pour out your excrement so that the world can come to hate and oppose you that much sooner. You are no defenders of Jews, you are the bringers of great misery upon the head of innocent jewish people. You are an extremist minority, and will continue to be exposed as such. Thanks for the bile.
 
by JA
Monday Aug 23rd, 2004 11:29 AM
DisHonest Guy, Monday, Aug. 23, at 6:47 AM: "As you can see, all of my points were confirmed. Joseph Anderson does not even bother to deny the Pro-nazi allegiances of Jeff Blankfort..."


Now *why* would I debate this with a ZIO-IDIOT like you?
 
by Honest Guy
Monday Aug 23rd, 2004 12:04 PM
In other words, all of my points are correct and you can't refute them. Thanks for acknowledging this.
 

Cross-Reference:

A PERSONAL REPORT-BACK FROM THE OAKLAND "ANTI-SEMITISM" CONFERENCE
- by Joseph Anderson

http://www.indybay.org/news/2004/08/1692778.php
 
by shakes, the amalgam
Monday Aug 23rd, 2004 6:45 PM
Thank you to the IMC's for maintaining this forum.

Earlier I wrote a statement, well thought out and I was hoping it would be useful.Then I lost it, so I wrote another. I will say this now, because it's been erased and I'm irritated.

Comparing anyone to Nazis is irresponsible. I noted that America, under every president has had places where certain people are not allowed, as a government has implemented strategies allocating natural resources to the ruling class, thus taking them away (from native americans, from mexicans...); that america has had for a long time, and still has ghettos (places where the undesirables are forced to live in squallor produced by epidemics, and economic 'inequality', to name a couple), and that this sorry state of affairs continues under each and every 'elected' leader. My point being you don't have to go as far as hitler to find extreme examples of idealogues and repressive regimes.

I wrote also that an anti-semitism conference can only help, and, since I'm now externally irritated I'll say, that it's irresponsible to call out this conference with out having any intention of going or at least finding out what it's about. It's as though you're saying, "Well, since there are only X-amount of jews in the world, and only x-amount are targeted by hatred, there's no need to address the hatred that is directed at the rest of them." That's gross. Look up the meaning of conference before you get into semantics.

And another thing. The constant pissing contest that occurs is ridiculous. It matters not that more muslims are targets of violence and racism than jews, or that more blacks are targets of racism than any one else in the US, it's that anyone is targeted at all. Don't try and discount one experience in order to promote another. It's cyclical. It's sick. And it's very far from progressive.

My father often finds irony in the fact that the whole world gets up in arms about a jewish state when there are entire countries where Islam is THE religion, where christianity is the religion, and if you don't like it, you can't live there. Or you can be tortured. Or killed. Where's the discussion about the vatican?

And Zionism? A movement adopted in the late 1890's by a group of people who wanted to get back to Israel 'cause they were sick of being fucked with. (See RUSSIA, POGROMS, etc.) Unfortunately, they didn't think about the people already living there, under imperialist rule, and so they went and displaced them, torched their houses and killed them in an effort to get their place in the sun. The there was the holocaust, and it was confirmed that jews needed to have a place to go that they could not be kicked out of. Progressives in america were on that tip for a while. Now, zionism is simply the idea that there should be a state solely for the jews, run by the jews, at the jews' whim. That does seem wrong. See the above paragraph for the irony.

Anti-semitism. That's hatred, anyway you cut it. If you hate semitic people, think them evil, duplicitous, inferior... you're an anti-semite. If you think Arabs are terrorists, you're an anti-semite. If you think Jews are out to get you and that they are all the root of evil, you're an anti-semite.

You lose the purpose when you jump into competing for victimhood, for righteousness. It's not to say that these issues are easy, but they do become complicated when we forget what people have said. thanks for reading, even if you hate me now.
 
by Robert Sprye
(beowulf [at] affv.nu) Monday Aug 23rd, 2004 11:29 PM
Thanks, Shakes!

Your clarification of the futile dialogue that often is passed back and forth between individuals incapable of sustaining rational discourse or even honest and open posting concerning the issue:

Anti-Semitism

is well put and I agree with your disappointment.

Antisemitism against Jews because the ill informed equate them all with the small pack of inordinately privileged corporate criminals who also happen to call themselves Jewish when they are but morally repugnant materialists soon to be destitute as the ramifications of human existence change rapidly around us...

Know your enemy. How true.

Against Arabs and other Muslims because they demand & defend their inalienable rights just as others do and because they have the resources needed to continue fuelling our corporate owned and controlled charade of fools and their victims yet a while longer.

We have seen the enemy and he is US.

To use the term "anti Semite" and equate it to ONLY mean the Semites that one personally chooses to "allow" their ethnic identity is, to be blunt, a racist, fascist ideology.

To attempt to contradict the obvious is to render yourself irrelevant in the eyes of others.

The people of Arabic descent in Palestine and Iraq are Semites. Where, I ask, is the charity and compassion for these maligned and murdered Semites?

The future for those trying to live and survive in The Holy Land is neither bright nor desirable unless changes are wrought on the social context of the politically constructed state of "Israel" soon.

Zionists are racist. They attempt to prop the legitimate needs of Jewish peoples up with racist slander and outright theft & murder of the innocent. Then they attempt to make others pity their predicament caused by the iniquity of their own policies.

Rational people living in The Holy Land do not attempt this; witness the 200 scholars and other leading figures from Israel who denounce and decry the policies of the wanted criminal Sharon and his so called "leadership". There is hope, and the situation is not in any way beyond recovery.

I believe that Israel would be far better served by sustaining a direct dialogue between The Arab League, representatives for Palestinian Arab Semites, and Jewish Semites, soonest.

One state, many peoples.

There is a large need to remove foreign interests entirely from the equation of The Middle and Near East. To my mind, the western corporate oligarch has done more harm to "Jews" and "Arabic Muslims", ie Semites, than any other entity.

The interests of that oligarch are false, it´s words are lies, it´s purpose is entirely criminal.

Some of them are Jewish. Some of them are Muslim. Some of them are Chinese. Some are Russian, some are British, some are French, some are even German or anything else you can think up, and rumour has it that some are even African. Morally repugnant and characterless men exist in all cultures and in all walks of life, there is no need to pretend that any single group of men has the market for greed, avarice, and crime for profit cornered.
 
a difficult piece, a response, by "shakes, the amalgam", Aug. 23, 6:45 PM: "Comparing anyone to Nazis is irresponsible."


"It would be my greatest sadness to see Jews do to Palestinian Arabs much of what Nazis did to Jews."

-- Albert Einstein


.
 
by shakes
Tuesday Aug 24th, 2004 2:48 PM
I do not disagree that Einstein made that statement. I do not disagree that jews and gentiles alike, empowered by the Israeli government have murdered under the pretext of freedom and for the purpose of imperialism. I mean to state, emphatically, that the Nazi comparison is too easy, and not all together accurate. I feel that in order to make comparisons, we must stray from generalization into point to point fact.

What was the purpose of the Nazi party and the third reich?
What were there tactics?

One could go on with point to point compare and contrast facts, but again, this is not the correct forum, and, since I guess I'm as entitled to my opinion as any one else, I would say that Josef Mengele, Goebbels, Himmler and 100,000+ brown shirts committed, in such a short time, such atrocities that I think are not quite equivalent to the tactics of the government of Israel.

However, if you believe that an atrocity is an atrocity, if it's more important to draw an extreme likeness than to define another meaning - one that this current round of victims surely is entitled to own - than I suppose comparing anyone to Nazis is quite acceptable.

Just 'cause I'm far from the original topic...

The institution of capitalism in the so called western world has many repercussions. Not only have Native Americans, Blacks, Mexicans, etc. paid in blood for the ground work to be laid for this institution, but so have so many other nations. Torture, mutilation, rape, murder, beatings, psychological abuse... all to keep this machine running.

Comparably, the Nazi party exploited, raped, murdered, etc... for the purpose of keeping its machine going. It's participants, yea, the very citizens that did nothing to stop it are/were as complicit as the decision makers themselves.

In this view, we're all Nazis. This very format, this computer we gain information from, the paper we use, the oil that drives us or flies us - all comes with a cost. A high, human cost.

If we're going to round one people up and put the label on them, we should put the label on ourselves.

Or wait, is it something different altogether?

I just got home from work. I'm rather tired.
 
shakes, Tuesday, Aug. 24, at 2:48 PM: "In this view, we're all Nazis."


Not even all the Nazi era Germans were "all Nazis".

There was -- within Germany -- at the time -- *German* -- especially underground opposition to the Nazi party and the Nazi regime and Hitler AT *EVERY* MOMENT OF ITS/HIS POLITICAL EXISTENCE!!

Even at the height of Nazi street thuggery, Hitler could never even get a majority in the German parliament: he had to *dissolve* it using dictatorial powers and the Nazi version of 'The Patriot Act' (Bush's bill) and 'The Anti-Terrorism & Anti-Crime Act' (Clinton's bill).

This, while the Nazi party, the Nazi regime, and Hitler himself, from the Spanish Civil War up until the invasion of Poland, were getting much support from many elites/politicians/newspapers in the West.

Many Western elites/politicians/newspapers loved his regimentation of society, they loved his opposition to labor unions, they loved his persecution of progressives, socialists, and other leftists. They loved his subjugation of minorities. They appreciated his desire for empire and economic spheres (as long as he didn't threaten the West's/Allies'.) They loved everything but his invasion of the West itself, their colonies, or their critical, strategically located, allies.

So much for the Germans supposedly being 'genetically' disposed to evil.

The problem was that to many of the ordinary or the educated of "the good Germans", internally, waited too long to speak up, before they safely could not. And externally, no less than Winston Churchill himself said that WWII could have been won _without firing a single shot_ ! -- if there had merely been stronger politcal opposition to Hitler, and the Nazis, from the West before it was too late.

The German's are scapegoated as 'genetically' prone to evil as a way for the West to morally evade its own genocidal enterprises. After the war Churchill said, "the victors will write the history books to tell the stories the way they want."

As for further comparisons of Zionism with Nazism, NOTE!:

Israeli newspaper revelations (notably Ha'artez -- do an archive search) revealed that the Israeli IDF was studying NAZI METHODS for use in the towns of the Occupied Terrirories (the newspapers probably said "West Bank" or just named the towns, like "in Jeinin").

(This information is also available at an Israeli Refusenik website:
"A Letter To American Jews From An Israeli Refusenik"
http://www.seruv.org.il )

AND NOTE!:

history of Zionism & Israel scholar Lenni Brenner's book:

"51 Documents: Zionist Collaboration with the Nazis",

where in one part, Brenner reveals that the Zionist terrorist gang, former Israeli prime Minister Menachim Begin's old terrorist gang, the Irgun, were quid pro quo ZIONIST JEWS WHO OFFERED, TO HITLER, TO FIGHT ON THE SIDE OF THE **NAZIS**!!!
 
by shakes
Tuesday Aug 24th, 2004 9:47 PM
I appreciate your continued devotion to this issue. I certainly looked at the link and intend to look in the ha'aretz archive as well. Thanks for the information, it is very useful, though I still can't see the importance in referring to anyone as nazis, unless it's to humiliate, and I'm just not a fan of that style. Thanks again! I really have appreciated this dialogue.
 
by JA
Tuesday Aug 24th, 2004 10:04 PM

shakes: "thanks for the meaningless insult"

It's not meant to be an insult (*NO* WE'RE *NOT* "ALL NAZIS"!! -- That's an intellectually meaningless statement): it's meant to be a logical statement. To just summarily say, and just *glibly* cast off, that "we're *all* nazis" contains no useful analytical information for the purposes of morally, intellectually, or historically examining the issue.


shakes: "I still can't see the importance in referring to anyone as nazis, unless it's to humiliate..."

It's meant to draw a stark moral comparison -- what we all were supposed to historically have learned from the Nuremberg trials.
 
by AZ
Sunday Aug 29th, 2004 7:54 PM
"[The Palestinians] are beasts walking on two legs."-Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, speech to the Knesset, quoted in Amnon Kapeliouk, "Begin and the 'Beasts,"' New Statesman, June 25,1982.
"We must do everything to ensure they [the Palestinian refugees] never do return."-David Ben-Gurion, in his diary, July 18, 1948, quoted in Michael Bar Zohar's "Ben-Gurion: the Armed Prophet," Prentice-Hall, 1967, p. 157.

"We must use terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation, and the cutting of all social services to rid the Galilee of its Arab population."-Israel Koenig, "The Koenig Memorandum."
"We shall reduce the Arab population to a community of woodcutters and waiters."-Uri Lubrani, Israeli Prime Minister Ben-Gurion's special adviser on Arab Affairs. Source: "The Arabs in Israel" by Sabri Jiryas.

 
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