In any case, any knowledgeable particular person is aware of that ‘From the river to the ocean’ is an anti-Semitic chant. It refers back to the violent purging of Jews from the entire space between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea. Regardless of the denials of anti-Israel activists, it’s primarily a name for the bodily annihilation of Jews the place Israel occurs to be. And but, within the form of this ‘Jews in opposition to genocide’ banner, some Jewish folks had been seemingly prepared to lend credence to requires Jews’ annihilation.

This phenomenon at first seems puzzling. Why are some Jews supporting demonstrations that almost all Jews would regard as anti-Semitic? In any case, these protests sometimes undertaking Israel because the epitome of all that’s evil on the planet: colonialist, racist and even Nazi.

Moreover, the presence of Jews permits anti-Israel activists to crow that this proves that their motion is just not anti-Semitic (regardless of the actual fact some protesters have been overtly calling for the killing of Jews). Anti-Zionists can then declare that Israel’s supporters are cynically weaponising the cost of anti-Semitism to silence criticism of Israel.

There are clearly some Jews who see no downside with supporting these protests. In Britain, these embody supporters of Na’amod (Hebrew for ‘we’ll stand’), a bunch dedicated ‘to finish[ing] our group’s help for Israel’s occupation and apartheid’. There’s additionally Jewish Voice for Labour, which describes itself as ‘Jewish-led’ slightly than Jewish. It defines itself versus the ‘apartheid state of Israel’.

In America, the place the Jewish group is much bigger than in Britain, Jewish anti-Israel organisations have many extra supporters. These organisations embody Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) and IfNotNow. Jewish Currents, a publication that has its origins within the pro-Soviet Communist Occasion of the USA, additionally performs a distinguished position. Certainly, JVP supplied the template for this week’s Liverpool Road protest, having organised an anti-Israel protest at New York’s Grand Central Terminal final week.

To make certain, there have all the time been some Jews against Israel. Along with Jews on the far left, the Neturei Karta, a tiny haredi (ultra-orthodox) sect, has usually featured prominently on anti-Israel protests. In its view, the Jewish state is evil as a result of it was caused by human political motion slightly than by God’s will. All the time sporting their distinctive non secular garb, this sect is welcomed by activists as an ostentatious approach of denying the existence of anti-Semitism at anti-Israel protests. The sect is often held up because the genuine voice of Jewry, even though the overwhelming majority of Jews, each within the US and the UK, absolutely help Israel’s proper to exist.

However one thing has modified in recent times. With the rise of id politics, an growing variety of folks, notably among the many younger, have embraced a worldview that divides folks up in response to a hierarchy of oppression. In consequence, Jews immediately are more and more seen as beneficiaries of white privilege on the expense of non-white teams. This in flip reinforces the horribly skewed view that Israel embodies white privilege within the Center East – that it’s an aggressor state victimising Arabs and Muslims. It’s maybe not stunning, then, {that a} current Harvard / Harris ballot confirmed that 48 per cent of American 18- to 24-year-olds facet extra with Hamas (versus the Palestinians) over Israel.

Jewish folks have been simply as affected by woke politics as different members of society. That’s why an growing quantity have embraced identitarian concepts. Certainly, they usually embrace an anti-Israel stance with extra zeal than others, as they see it as a type of rebel in opposition to their elders.

In consequence, the woke sections of the Jewish group make the identical horrendous errors as others who embrace id politics. JVP reacted to the murderous Hamas assault on Israel by declaring that ‘the basis of violence is oppression’ and referring to the Hamas killers as ‘Palestinian fighters’. It claimed that ‘Israeli apartheid and occupation – and United States complicity in that oppression – are the supply of all this violence’. By its identitarian perspective, JVP has successfully excused the actions of a genocidal Islamist organisation.

Or take the outline of Hamas’s pogrom by Ilan Pappe, an anti-Zionist Israeli historian who’s the darling of anti-Israel activists. He claimed that his understanding of ‘the settler-colonial nature of Zionism’ had led him to ‘admire the braveness of the Palestinian fighters who took over a dozen navy bases, overcoming the strongest military within the Center East’. He conveniently forgot to say the homicide and rape of many lots of of civilians. So far as he noticed it, Israeli oppression had pushed Hamas to assault. It ‘needed to act, and rapidly so’, he stated. It’s arduous to think about this as something aside from a justification for terrorism dressed up within the jargon of ‘decolonisation’.

Identification politics is embraced by many, from Christians and Muslims to atheists and Jews. However it is just the latter who’re being utilized by the management of the anti-Israel motion in an try and deny the blatant anti-Semitism in its ranks. This denial must be staunchly resisted by all those that stand in opposition to Jew hatred and for freedom.

Daniel Ben-Ami is an creator and journalist. He runs the web site Radicalism of Fools, devoted to rethinking anti-Semitism. Observe him on Twitter: @danielbenami

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