Warnings of Israeli fascism should be heeded, not condemned | The Electronic Intifada

Woman and children walk past wall spray painted with graffiti reading Death to the Arabs!

Israel lobby groups are pushing to codify into law worldwide a controversial definition of anti-Semitism with the intent of suppressing criticism of Israel. The definition has been rightly criticized for conflating criticism of a state and its political ideology with anti-Jewish bigotry. What has received less scrutiny is how it would also brand as anti-Semitic critiques of Zionism and Israeli policy expressed by Jews, including Israelis, for decades. This definition of anti-Semitism, adopted by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), provides what it says are 11 examples of anti-Semitism. One of the examples – “drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” – implicitly condemns as anti-Semitic the statements of Jewish critics, especially Jewish Israelis, who have made precisely that comparison. One of the most famous of these comparisons came as early as 1948 when Jewish Americans, among them the scientist Albert Einstein and scholars such as Hannah Arendt, Sidney Hook and Seymour Melman, published a letter in The New York Times protesting the planned visit of Menachem Begin, then the leader of Israel’s Freedom Party, to the US. The

Source: Warnings of Israeli fascism should be heeded, not condemned | The Electronic Intifada

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