A reflection on the hatred of Jews

The author, Stephen Pollard, is the editor of The Jewish Chronicle in the UK. He writes, The Left’s hatred of Jews chills me to the bone.

And it’s not the terrorists. They threaten me, of course, as they threaten us all. Yet to me, the real chill comes from their fellow travelers – the useful idiots of the terrorists and Jew-murderers who say they do not have a racist bone in their body, but when it comes to Jews, a blind spot emerges. The likes, to be blunt, of the now suspended Ken Livingstone, who claims never to have come across a single example of Anti-semitism in the Labour Party. He clearly has never looked in the mirror. Much has been written – especially by the brilliant Nick Cohen – on the “Red/Green Alliance”; the phenomenon by which a swathe of the Left has linked up with radical Islam, leading to the bizarre spectacle of Leftist feminists supporting Islamists who would cut off the hands of women who read books.

With “anti-Western-imperialism” as part of the glue binding the alliance, everything else falls into place. So Hamas and Hezbollah might have as their defining goal the elimination of an entire people from the face of the earth, but that unfortunate consequence for Jews is by the by, because Hamas and Hezbollah are freedom fighters.

And because Israel is part of the Western imperium, as well as a key target for Islamists, it is also enemy number one for progressives. So an obsessive preoccupation with the Jewish state becomes the default position of the Left. China, Zimbabwe, Saudi Arabia – pah! The focus must be on Israel and Israel alone. From that springs an entire worldview that encompasses “Zionist” control of the media, of business, of everything. And we can’t be accused of targeting Jews because we don’t use the word. We say Zionist, not Jew.

So deep does this warping of what it means to be Left and progressive now run that it is almost prosaic to assert Zionist control. But now, to cap it, we have a Labour leader whose entire political career has been in this milieu – feeding it, growing it and pushing it.

For months now, week by week, examples have been emerging of cut and dried anti-Semitism – most dressed up, oh so cleverly, as anti-Zionism, but much not even bothering to hide it. And the Labour leader’s response to the criticism that he is soft on anti-Semitism and that it’s his political mindset that has fuelled its rise is not to get hard on anti-Semitism. It’s to get irritated.

This is not some academic exercise or interesting political theory. This is reality – the reality that the Labour Party is now run by a cadre for whom anti-Semitism really is ok, so long as it is dressed up as anti-Zionism. Because Zionism is the enemy of all good people.

Anti-Semitism is also far from being the preserve of the Left, but is a universal hatred from which almost no part of the political spectrum appears immune.

AND ALSO PUBLISHED TODAY: There is obviously something going on in the UK for this to be published as well. From The Spectator: Labour’s anti-Semitism problem stems from its grassroots.

Now everybody is talking about the Jews and Labour’s anti-Semitism problem. Yet they still refuse to get to the point. Because it is not as though anti-Semitism is simply transferred in the water-supply. Of course there are anti-Semitic tendencies in every strain of politics. I could point to a strain within the Conservative tradition. But in the Conservative tradition it is dying. The problem for Labour is that anti-Semitism in their party is a growth industry. And the simple reason for that is a demographic one.

And this is why it is seen as a particular problem of the left:

Why did that happen? The simple reason is, as Mehdi Hasan once said, that anti-Semitism among Britain’s Muslim communities is ‘routine and commonplace.’ It is, as Mehdi said, the ‘dirty little secret’ of Britain’s Muslims. Numerous polls have shown a glimpse of the same thing. And that, right there, is Labour’s problem: the more Muslims you have, the more anti-Semitism you have. Of course the party will not admit this. Not least because it goes directly against New Labour’s policy of mass immigration. The architects of that grand policy in the late 1990s thought that the more people you brought into Britain the more ‘diverse’, ‘vibrant’ and ‘tolerant’ our society would become. Instead they have imported, among other things, a new generation of racists.

John Stuart Mill once observed that democracy could work only among a unified homogeneous people. This ominous passage is from Chapter XVI of his Considerations on Representative Government:

“Free institutions are next to impossible in a country made up of different nationalities. Among a people without fellow-feeling, especially if they read and speak different languages, the united public opinion, necessary to the working of representative government, cannot exist. The influences which form opinions and decide political acts are different in the different sections of the country. An altogether different set of leaders have the confidence of one part of the country and of another. The same books, newspapers, pamphlets, speeches, do not reach them. One section does not know what opinions, or what instigations, are circulating in another. […] For the preceding reasons, it is in general a necessary condition of free institutions that the boundaries of governments should coincide in the main with those of nationalities.” (Mill [1861] 1991*: 291-294).

There is nothing there we do not see at every turn. What a dark future there must be if this is actually right.

* Mill, John Stuart. [1861] 1991. Considerations on Representative Government, In J. Gray (ed.) On Liberty and Other Essays. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 203-467.

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