He May Be Jewish, but Eric Zemmour Is No Friend of the Jews

Last week, the far-right French pundit and provocateur Éric Zemmour announced his candidacy for the country’s 2022 presidential elections. His platform rests on social conservatism, hostility to immigrants, national pride, and nostalgia for an idealized past. Although Zemmour is himself Jewish, Ben Cohen offers this caution:

When you examine the depressing chronology of anti-Semitic attacks in France over the last twenty years, you note pretty quickly that many of the offenders were Muslims who were influenced in some way by radical Islam. . . . Some Jews, inside and outside France, believe that Zemmour will deal with the problem of domestic Muslim radicalism and that alone would justify voting for him. They will then point to his Jewish origins and his habit of occasionally attending synagogue for additional support.

Still, to reach that conclusion requires you to ignore other pertinent considerations, such as Zemmour’s nauseating Holocaust revisionism, which falsely depicts the Vichy regime as the savior of French Jews at the expense of the foreign-born, and his crackpot belief that Alfred Dreyfus—falsely convicted of espionage amid a surge of violent anti-Semitism in France at the end of the 19th century—might have been guilty after all.

You would have to forget that Zemmour described the victims of the 2012 Islamist massacre at a Jewish school in Toulouse as not truly French because they were laid to rest in the state of Israel. And you would have to overlook the fact that Zemmour has no experience of government, a past conviction for racist utterances, and a boorish side to his personality.

Read more at JNS

More about: Alfred Dreyfus, Anti-Semitism, European Islam, French Jewry, Vichy France

An Israeli Buffer Zone in the Gaza Strip Doesn’t Violate International Law

 The IDF announced on Thursday that it is safe for residents to return to some of the towns and villages near the Gaza Strip that have been abandoned since October 7. Yet on the same day, rocket sirens sounded in one of those communities, Kibbutz Mefalsim. To help ensure security in the area, Israel is considering the creation of a buffer zone within the Strip that would be closed to Palestinian civilians and buildings. The U.S. has indicated, however, that it would not look favorably on such a step.

Avraham Shalev explains why it’s necessary:

The creation of a security buffer along the Gaza-Israel border serves the purpose of destroying Hamas’s infrastructure and eliminating the threat to Israel. . . . Some Palestinian structures are practically on the border, and only several hundred yards away from Israeli communities such as Kfar Aza, Kerem Shalom, and Sderot. The Palestinian terrorists that carried out the murderous October 7 attacks crossed into Israel from many of these border-adjacent areas. Hamas officials have already vowed that “we will do this again and again. The al-Aqsa Flood [the October 7th massacre] is just the first time, and there will be a second, a third, a fourth.”

In 2018 and 2019, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad organized mass marches towards the Israeli border with the goal of breaking into Israel. Billed by Palestinians as “the Great March of Return,” its name reveals its purpose—invasion. Although the marches were supposedly non-violent, they featured largescale attacks on Israeli forces as well as arson and damage to Israeli agriculture and civilian communities. Moreover, the October 7 massacre was made possible by Hamas’s prepositioning military hardware along the border under false cover of civilian activity. The security perimeter is intended to prevent a reprise of these events.

Shalev goes on to dismantle the arguments put forth about why international law prohibits Israel from creating the buffer zone. He notes:

By way of comparison, following the defeat of Nazi Germany, France occupied the Saar [River Valley] directly until 1947 and then indirectly until reintegration with Germany in 1957, and the Allied occupation of Berlin continued until the reunification of Germany in 1990. The Allies maintained their occupation long after the fall of the Nazi regime, due to the threat of Soviet invasion and conquest of West Berlin, and by extension Western Europe.

Read more at Kohelet

More about: Gaza Strip, Gaza War 2023, International Law, Israeli Security