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Why Universities Have Ignored the New Anti-Semitism

Taking as his point of departure the late Robert Wistrich’s 2013 essay “The Changing Face of Anti-Semitism,” Charles Small examines the long history of the hatred of Jews and the causes of its durability. He also elucidates the connections between old-fashioned European anti-Semitism—manifested as religious or racial prejudice—and its newer incarnations in radical Islam and in the anti-Zionism of the far left. Most troublingly, Small points to, and explains, Western academia’s unwillingness to confront these manifestations of anti-Semitism even as it produces much scholarship on its older forms, as well as on the anti-Semitism of today’s far right. (Interview by Jonathan Silver. Audio, 46 minutes. Options for download and streaming are available at the link below.)

Read more at Tikvah

More about: Academia, Anti-Semitism, Anti-Zionism, History & Ideas

Being a Critic of Israel Means Never Having to Explain How It Should Defend Itself

April 23 2018

The ever-worsening situation of Jews in Europe, writes Bret Stephens, should serve as a reminder of the need for a Jewish state. Israel’s critics, he suggests, should reflect more deeply on that need:

Israel did not come into existence to serve as another showcase of the victimization of Jews. It exists to end the victimization of Jews.

That’s a point that Israel’s restless critics could stand to learn. On Friday, Palestinians in Gaza returned for the fourth time to the border fence with Israel, in protests promoted by Hamas. The explicit purpose of Hamas leaders is to breach the fence and march on Jerusalem. Israel cannot possibly allow this—doing so would create a precedent that would encourage similar protests, and more death, along all of Israel’s borders—and has repeatedly used deadly force to counter it.

The armchair corporals of Western punditry think this is excessive. It would be helpful if they could suggest alternative military tactics to an Israeli government dealing with an urgent crisis against an adversary sworn to its destruction. They don’t.

It would also be helpful if they could explain how they can insist on Israel’s retreat to the 1967 borders and then scold Israel when it defends those borders. They can’t. If the armchair corporals want to persist in demands for withdrawals that for 25 years have led to more Palestinian violence, not less, the least they can do is be ferocious in defense of Israel’s inarguable sovereignty. Somehow they almost never are. . . .

[T]o the extent that the diaspora’s objections [to Israeli policies] are prompted by the nonchalance of the supposedly nonvulnerable when it comes to Israel’s security choices, then the complaints are worse than feckless. They provide moral sustenance for Hamas in its efforts to win sympathy for its strategy of wanton aggression and reckless endangerment. And they foster the illusion that there’s some easy and morally stainless way by which Jews can exercise the responsibilities of political power.

Read more at New York Times

More about: Anti-Semitism, Gaza Strip, Israel & Zionism