The Anti-Defamation League put out an exhaustive poll to find out how much anti-Semitism there is in the world. The poll is fatally flawed, with questions that often don’t describe anti-Semitism but a broader fear of the other, a weak standard for passing the anti-Semitism bar and other issues. Yet, with all of that, it found that 26% of the world holds some of what they defined as “anti-Semitic views.” That is, actually, a remarkably low number, but the ADL and Israel sounded the alarm bells. I explore this further in Souciant this week.
Posts Tagged ‘Iran’
A slightly edited version of this article originally appeared at LobeLog.
April 28 is the day on which Jews all around the world commemorate the Holocaust. It’s an important day, a somber time for obvious reasons. One would think it would be treated with respect, especially by self-defined “Jewish leaders.” And yet, it comes as no surprise that at least one such leader, the Prime Minister of Israel, would cynically use the memory of the Holocaust to further a political agenda that presses for war and uses the Holocaust memory to further the goal of ongoing occupation.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas made what was probably the clearest statement of sympathy for the history of Jewish suffering in World War II ever by a Palestinian leader. He called it “…”the most heinous crime against humanity in modern history.” Abbas continued by offering his sympathy to the “families of the victims and the innocent people who were killed by the Nazis including the Jews and others.” That is a decidedly clear statement, acknowledging the Jews specifically, but also not forgetting that nearly an equal number of non-Jews were killed in the Nazi camps.
Many Jews around the world welcomed Abbas’ statement, as well we should. But Netanyahu used the opportunity to declare once again that “rather than releasing declarations aimed at soothing international public opinion, he must choose between Hamas and true peace.” Bibi dismissed Abbas’ statement as a public relations move. (more…)
Posted in Israel, tagged Abbas Milani, Avigdor Lieberman, Benjamin Netanayhu, Benny Begin, Dan Meridor, democracy, Iran, Israel, Israel Waismel-Manor, Israeli domestic politics, Jewish Home, Knesset, Menachem Begin, Miri Regev, Naftali Bennett, New York Times, Shas, Tablet Magazine, theocracy, Tzipi Hotovely, UTJ, Yair Rosenberg, Yesh Atid, Yisrael Beiteinu, Ze'ev Elkin on April 21, 2014 | 2 Comments »
An edited version of this article appeared first at LobeLog.
They were dueling op-eds, one in the New York Times and the other in the Jewish communal magazine, Tablet. The question being
bandied between them was whether Israel is becoming a theocracy. Not surprisingly, both pieces missed the mark. It’s not theocracy but unbridled nationalism that is the threat in Israel.
The Times piece was authored by Abbas Milani, who heads the Iranian Studies program at Stanford University and Israel Waismel-Manor, a lecturer at Haifa University who is currently a visiting associate professor of Political Science at Stanford. Their thesis is that Iran and Israel are moving in opposite directions on a democratic-theocratic scale, and that they might at some point in the future pass each other. Milani and Waismel-Manor are certainly correct about the strengthening forces of secularism and democracy in Iran, along with a good dose of disillusionment and frustration with the revolutionary, Islamic government that Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini ushered in thirty-five years ago. But on Israel, they miss the mark by a pretty wide margin.
Waismel-Manor and MIlani posit that the thirty seats currently held in Israel’s Knesset by religious parties shows growing religious influence on Israeli policies. But, as Yair Rosenberg at Tablet correctly points out, not all the religious parties have the same attitude about separation of religion and the state. Where Rosenberg, unsurprisingly, goes way off course is his complete eliding of the fact that the threat is not Israel’s tilt toward religion, but it’s increasingly radical shift toward right-wing policies, which are often severely discriminatory and militant. (more…)
Posted in Bibi Netanyahu, tagged AIPAC, Barack Obama, Bibi Netanyahu, Congress, Gaza, Iran, Iran diplomacy, Iran nuclear, Israel, Israel-Palestine Talks, J Street, Jewish State, John Kerry, Klos C, Mahmoud Abbas, Netanyahu US trip, Syrian civil war, US-Israel relations on March 13, 2014 | Leave a Comment »
My latest piece at LobeLog reviews the failure of virtually all of Benjamin Netanyahu’s objectives during his trip to the United States last week. I strongly recommend it.
I hope to have something up on LobeLog later today about the spasm of violence in Gaza and Southern Israel. Here’s a hint: I don’t think it is what it seems to be.
Posted in Peace Plans, tagged Avigdor Lieberman, Barack Obama, Beit El, Benjamin Netanyahu, Davos, Hebron, Iran, Jerusalem, John Kerry, Jordan Valley, Mahmoud Abbas, Moshe Ya'alon, Netherlands, Palestinian Refugees, Two-state solution, Yair Lapid on January 22, 2014 | 1 Comment »
This article originally appeared at LobeLog.
It’s a busy week for Secretary of State John Kerry. On Monday, he received Israel’s top two negotiators, Tzipi Livni and Isaac
Molho. Then he packed his bags and headed off to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Kerry will have any number of important tasks in Davos, but perhaps the highest profile of them will be a sideline meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. These meetings, it is said, are meant to “bridge the gaps between Israel and the Palestinians.”
If anyone was holding out hope that these talks were anything more than a sham, those words should end such hopes. The framing of the United States bridging the gap between Israel and the Palestinians belies the reality of Israeli anger and Palestinian disappointment bordering on feelings of betrayal in terms of the US’ relationship with both sides. Let’s just look at where things stand. (more…)