The Dishonest Smearing of a British Philosopher as an Anti-Semite

April 11 2019

Yesterday, the philosopher Roger Scruton lost his largely advisory position as the head of a UK housing commission on the grounds of allegedly anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, and anti-Chinese statements cited in an interview by one George Eaton, published in the New Statesman. Douglas Murray comments:

It appeared that Scruton had said that Islamophobia is “a propaganda word invented by the Muslim Brotherhood in order to stop discussion of a major issue.” Which is true. He also said that “Anybody who doesn’t think that there’s a Soros empire in Hungary has not observed the facts.” A fact which is also true.

Obviously since the British Labor party became a party of anti-Semites it has become exceptionally important to pretend that anti-Semitism is equally prevalent on the political right in Britain and that to criticize any of the actions of George Soros is in fact simply to indulge in anti-Semitism equivalent to that rolling through the Labor party. A very useful play for the political left, but wholly untrue. Anyway, I say “it appears” that Scruton said this because there seem to be a few journalistic problems here.

Though Eaton says that Scruton said the above I am not confident that this is so. Eaton . . . claims, for instance, that what Scruton said about Soros was in actual fact a quote “on Hungarian Jews,” as though Scruton had attacked all Hungarian Jews, rather than one very influential and political man who happens to be a Hungarian Jew.

Scruton’s remarks about Hungarian Jewry, it turns out, were quoted by Eaton—with liberal use of an ellipsis—from a speech Scruton had given in Hungary. A closer examination of the paragraph of the speech cited by Eaton shows that Scruton was expressing sympathy for Hungarian Jewish supporters of Soros and expressing his concerns over Hungarian anti-Semitism.

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More about: Anti-Semitism, Hungary, Labor Party (UK), Muslim Brotherhood, United Kingdom

Is There a Way Out of Israel’s Political Deadlock?

On Tuesday, leaders of the Jewish state’s largest political parties, Blue and White and Likud, met to negotiate the terms of a coalition agreement—and failed to come to an agreement. If none of the parties in the Knesset succeeds in forming a governing coalition, there will be a third election, with no guarantee that it will be more conclusive than those that preceded it. Identifying six moves by key politicians that have created the deadlock, Shmuel Rosner speculates as to whether they can be circumvented or undone:

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More about: Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli Election 2019, Israeli politics