The New Face of American Progressivism Is Illiberal and Anti-Semitic

Leading the much-ballyhooed “Women’s March” that took place in Washington in January, and the simultaneous marches in cities across the U.S., were four women who have since become the face of the progressive left in the U.S. In keeping with the current obsession with racial quotas, one is white, one black, one Hispanic, and one Arab. Bari Weiss notes that they share a fondness for bigots, especially of the anti-Semitic variety:

Start with [Linda] Sarsour, by far the most visible of the quartet of organizers. It turns out that this “homegirl in a hijab,” as one of many articles about her put it, has a history of disturbing views. . . . “Nothing is creepier than Zionism,” she wrote [on Twitter] in 2012. And, oddly, given her status as a major feminist organizer, there are more than a few statements that seem to make common cause with anti-feminists, like this from 2015: “You’ll know when you’re living under Shariah law if suddenly all your loans and credit cards become interest-free. Sound nice, doesn’t it?” She has dismissed the anti-Islamist feminist Ayaan Hirsi Ali in the most crude and cruel terms. . . .

Largely overlooked have been the similarly outrageous statements of the march’s other organizers. Tamika Mallory, in addition to [joining Sarsour] in applauding [the convicted police-killer] Assata Shakur as a feminist emblem, also admires Fidel Castro, who sheltered Shakur in Cuba. . . . [Carmen] Perez also expressed her admiration for a Black Panther convicted of trying to kill six police officers.

But the public figure both [Mallory and Perez] regularly fawn over is Louis Farrakhan. On May 11, Mallory posted a photo [of herself] with her arm around Farrakhan—the eighty-four-year-old Nation of Islam leader notorious for his anti-Semitic comments—on Twitter and Instagram. “Thank God this man is still alive and doing well,” she wrote. It is one of several videos and photos and quotes that Mallory has posted of Farrakhan. . . .

Readers born after 1980 will probably have little idea [of Farrakhan], since he has largely remained out of the headlines since the Million Man March he organized in 1995. But his views . . . remain as appalling as ever. “And don’t you forget, when it’s God who puts you in the ovens, it’s forever!” he warned Jews in a speech at a Nation of Islam gathering in Madison Square Garden in 1985. . . . He called Hitler “a very great man” on national television. Judaism, he insists, is a “gutter religion.”

Yet, Weiss notes, even those progressives who find such sentiments and associations distasteful turn a blind eye to the dubious connections of their new leaders.

Subscribe to Mosaic

Welcome to Mosaic

Subscribe now to get unlimited access to the best of Jewish thought and culture

Subscribe

Subscribe to Mosaic

Welcome to Mosaic

Subscribe now to get unlimited access to the best of Jewish thought and culture

Subscribe

Read more at New York Times

More about: Anti-Semitism, Louis Farrakhan, Politics & Current Affairs, Progressivism, U.S. Politics

Will America Invite Israel to Join Its Multinational Coalitions?

From the Korean War onward, the U.S. has rarely fought wars alone, but has instead led coalitions of various allied states. Israel stands out in that it has close military and diplomatic relations with Washington yet its forces have never been part of these coalitions—even in the 1991 Gulf War, when Iraqi missiles were raining down on its cities. The primary reason for its exclusion was the sensitivity of participating Arab and Muslim nations. But now that Jerusalem has diplomatic relations with several Arab countries and indeed regularly participates alongside them in U.S.-led joint military exercises, David Levy believes it may someday soon be asked to contribute to an American expedition.

It is unlikely that Israel would be expected by the U.S. to deploy the Golani [infantry] brigade or any other major army unit. Instead, Washington will likely solicit areas of IDF niche expertise. These include missile defense and special forces, two areas in which Israel is a world leader. The IDF has capabilities that it can share by providing trainers and observers. Naval and air support would also be expected as these assets are inherently deployable. Israel can also provide allies in foreign wars with intelligence and cyber-warfare support, much of which can be accomplished without the physical deployment of troops.

Jerusalem’s previous reasons for abstention from coalitions were legitimate. Since its independence, Israel has faced existential threats. Conventional Arab armies sought to eliminate the nascent state in 1948-49, 1967, and again in 1973. This danger remained ever-present until the 1978 signing of the Camp David Accords, which established peace between Egypt and Israel. Post-Camp David, the threats to Israel remain serious but are no longer existential. If Iran were to become a nuclear power, this would pose a new existential threat. Until then, Israel is relatively well secured.

Jerusalem’s new Arab allies would welcome its aid. Western capitals, especially Washington, should be expected to pursue Israel’s military assistance, and Jerusalem will have little choice but to acquiesce to the expeditionary expectation.

Subscribe to Mosaic

Welcome to Mosaic

Subscribe now to get unlimited access to the best of Jewish thought and culture

Subscribe

Subscribe to Mosaic

Welcome to Mosaic

Subscribe now to get unlimited access to the best of Jewish thought and culture

Subscribe

Read more at BESA Center

More about: IDF, U.S. military, U.S.-Israel relationship