The lesson from Canada's Israel Apartheid Week: Anti-Semitism is now a creature of the left

The writer below is perfectly correct. All he misses is that the Left (including the socialist Hitler) has been the principal home of antisemitism at least since the days of the furiously antisemitic Karl Marx. See here. There was a brief let-up in Leftist antisemitism after WWII but the dog has now returned to its vomit (Proverbs 26:11)

People speak of anti-Semitism as if it were a monolithic evil. But it's not. There are two distinct strains of Jew hatred. Unfortunately, our society is still fixated on fighting the one that went out of style four decades ago. The difference between the two begins with the way Jews are depicted. Look at the images on this page. The one on the left, a poster published in German-occupied Poland in 1941, exemplifies the Jew-hatred spouted by the Nazis. (The caption reads: "Jews and Lice: They cause typhus.") The image on the right, a poster circulated on Canadian campuses this week to mark "Israel Apartheid Week," typifies the more recent variant.

Aside from the obvious - the language and style of illustration - what crucial difference do you notice? In the Nazi poster, the Jew is a piece of filth - a rogue pathogen within gentile society. The image perfectly captures Hitler's view of Jews as a "bacillus infecting the life of peoples." Now look at the image on the right. Aside from retaining the general sense that the Jew (or, to give the fig leaf its due, "the Jewish state") is a scourge upon the world, everything has changed. The Jew is no longer diseased and wretched. Just the opposite: He is an omnipotent, teched up superman, murdering a defenseless Palestinian child from above.

In this latter detail - the use of a child victim to communicate the extent of the Jew's evil - the anti-Israeli propaganda of today is similar to the posters and textbooks of the Nazi era, which often showed shadowy Hebrews menacing German children. But the Nazis usually took care to personalize the Jew as a craggy, hook-nosed ghoul - an image meant to further the idea that Jews were so genetically inferior as to be literally inhuman. Aside from editorial cartoonists in the Arab world (many of whom faithfully copy Nazi-era stereotypes to this day), anti-Semitic propagandists of our own age typically omit the Jew's features altogether in favour of a faceless, Star-of-Zion-emblazoned tank or helicopter. As in the Nazi era, the Jew isn't fully human - but now he's an all-powerful Nazgul instead of a pitiful Gollum. What explains this radical transition in the presentation of anti-Semitic propaganda? Three factors.

The first is ideology: When the Nazis went down to defeat, they took with them the intellectual basis of "germ-theory" anti-Semitism - the toxic notion that certain races or groups are genetically inferior or parasitical. In our era, to compare Jews to leeches is to announce oneself as a bigoted creature from society's discredited fringe.

The second reason is tied up with the history of Israel itself: After the Jews established their own state in 1948, it became impossible to typecast them as mere parasites contaminating foreign hosts. This was especially true after the Six-Day War of 1967, in which Israel scored a crushing military victory against Egypt, Jordan and Syria - not the sort of maneuver you'd expect from typhus-stricken old men.

The third reason is political: The leaders who find anti-Semitism useful today aren't extreme nationalists such as Hitler, Stalin or Mussolini (though Hugo Chavez admittedly has been wandering into that territory). Instead, they are radical Muslims - and their allies in Western activist groups, who speak the tropes of anti-colonialism, anti-imperialism, anti-Americanism, anti-racism and all the other fashionable antis. In this left-wing intellectual climate, disparaging any race or religion per se is off limits. The preferred tactic is to disparage the allegedly colonial, imperialist, racist etc. nature of their actions.

In keeping with our society's obsession with victimhood, the propaganda strategy against Israel now is entirely passive aggressive. While the Nazis loved to dwell on the virility and superhuman indomitability of Aryans, the Jews' enemies now are represented in propaganda by 5-year-olds carrying teddy bears. (For more in this vein, watch the 60-second promotional movie on the Israel Apartheid Week web site, in which you will see a cartoon mock-up of Gaza's population that contains no men of military age - just a bunch of sorrowful kids, mommies and granddads.) The moral dimension of the conflict - terrorism versus counter-terrorism, a society seeking peace versus one that seems addicted to war - has been replaced by a sentimental Marxist-inspired tale of the virtuous oppressed rising up against an evil oppressor.

Broadly speaking, in other words, the locus of anti-Semitism has moved from the right side of the political spectrum to the left. Here in Canada, you still do see a few isolated anti-Semites of the Nazi persuasion here and there - David Ahenakew is one rare example. But for the most part, the neo-Nazi movement is confined to a few self-parodic Internet chat rooms (many of whose members, we've learned in recent years, are actually bored human-rights bureaucrats looking to stir up hate-speech charges). These days, the hatemongers targeting Jews' right to live peacefully spout the mantras of "social justice" and "peace studies," not racial purity. Their movement is dominated by the sort of leftists and minority activists whom the Nazis (neo or otherwise) would have up against the wall in a heartbeat if they had the chance. (Running down through the published list of 11 speakers at the University of Toronto's Israel Apartheid Week, for instance, you will find no fewer than three Canadian aboriginal activists. Who knew these people were such experts on the Middle East?)

It also must be admitted that the anti-Semitism of today is a lot more subtle than the old-fashioned variety: Except in clear cases of blood libel such as the IAH poster, it's often hard to tell where legitimate criticism of Israel ends and Jew-hatred begins. As a result, Jews themselves - middle-aged university professors and career feminists, most typically - are often drawn into radicalized campaigns against Israel, and sometimes even can be seen marching gullibly arm-in-arm with Kafiyeh-clad protestors chanting for Jewish blood in Arabic.

It's a disgusting spectacle, especially when you hear their maudlin rhetoric - "massacre," "crime against humanity," "genocide," "holocaust," etc. If these words may be applied to the unintentional killing of several hundred Gazans during a counterterrorist operation, how does one describe the wholesale slaughter of tens or hundreds of thousands in places such as Chechnya and Darfur? ("Mega-massacre"? "Giga-genocide"?) You don't have to be anti-Semitic to pervert language or logic in this way, but it certainly helps. And I can see why many of my correspondents want universities to ban Israel Apartheid Week, or at least the most vicious IAW propaganda.

Though I personally don't care much for censorship, one might even think that this is the sort of issue in which our country's human rights commissions (last seen defending a Muslim woman's right to appear masked in court) might take an interest. But you'd be wrong. Our entire human-rights establishment was built in the 1960s and 1970s on the assumption that anti-Semitism would always be a creature of the extreme right. And to this day, the dinosaurs who run the nation's HRCs - along with their allies in the identity-politics industry - persist in the ridiculous notion that the main threat to Jews emanates from drunken old fossils like Ahenakew, or the eight unemployed hamburger-flippers who get together in Calgary every year to exchange badly rehearsed Hitler salutes.

They treasure this conceit for an obvious self-serving reason: Vilifying Nazis is easy. Taking on politically correct Muslims and campus lefties on parade is hard. Anti-Semitism thrives when lazy people look the other way. That much, at least, hasn't changed.



The stupidity rational people are up against

Below is an email recently received from an antisemite, complete with strange grammar, spelling etc. I think it is just schizophrenic thought-disorder but Muslim comments about Jews mostly have a poor grip on reality too

Euthenasia law signed by Hitler Was never put into use because the rest of germany would not vote for it, plus, the intended targets of euthenasia were gone during the war - you know, they died from starvation and cold.

Your site is misrepresenting a lot of facts. It looks to me like you are on the jews side.

What are you going to do next, create a retirement community and leave the old people out to die like the jews did? I have family pictures of old people whose families were milked for a lot of money, as they were well off, and thought their old people would be well taken care of, who in fact had their old people left out to die, starved to death, their houses left cold, and the jews put on this big ruse with the family like they were still alive and kept taking their money. Plus, those hideours jews would go back to look all the time at the bodies, and would go to other towns to find more victims and bring them back. In addition, they spent the money they earned paying for hits on local law enforcement until they could take over a whole village and move more of their relatives in.

Also, the jews killed their own kind. They were killing the polish jews to the best of their ability by sucking them into the villages they ended up owning, and getting them sick as experiments and watching them suffer and die, in order to know more about "medicine". They were all worse than any dr. mendela. Dr. Mendela is mostly blame victim, and reason for the Germans themselves to end world war II - You know, they put him up there in order to get the allies to blame just one man instead of the whole german population for stuff the jews had been doing themselves. Because the germans got blamed for what the jews were doing in their country, you know, it's like "why did you germans let those jews get so out of hand?" Better cover up for your countries weakness by taking the blame, HUH? DUH? Because you've probably studied all this to a T and know it anyway. You are most likely evil people who want to continue to perpertuate blame on an innocent german country forever, because it's fun to see all the germans ever born on earth suffer, like they are all responsible for the nazi movement, which by the way was only the sociopathic germans, not the normal ones. I was born into a neonazi family, and the neonazis were responsible when they ran WW I and WW II, they never got out of hand like Hitler did. And by the way, during WW II, the brightest and best generals were in their 70's, so germany had plenty of espionage experience to draw from

Lisa Hawthorne []

Note: I make no claim that the "Lisa Hawthorne" who wrote the above email is in any way connected with the various Lisas Hawthorne to be found by a Google search. I simply have no information on that


The appallingly incompetent way in which Lisa has expressed herself led me to suspect schizophrenic thought-disorder, a symptom of psychosis. A reader however has what is in a way an even more depressing suggestion. He says that her words are typical of a postmodernist young adult's attempt at writing English.


By any criterion except ideology, Ashkenazi Jews are a highly intelligent group -- so it has long been a puzzle that Israelis do not score highly on IQ tests. Tests conducted on Israeli army intakes show an average IQ of 100, which is dead average for European countries. This post however gives a better explanation for the anomaly than my facetious one (that smart Jews stay in New York). It points out that a majority of Israelis are of Middle-Eastern (Sephardi and Mizrahi) origin rather than European (Ashkenazi) origin and that the large gap between Sephardi and Ashkenazi IQ is well-known. So an average of 100 for all of Israel still implies a quite high average IQ for Ashkenazi Israelis. Nice to have that puzzle solved.

Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your daily roundup of pro-environment but anti-Greenie news and commentary at GREENIE WATCH . Email me (John Ray) here

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