2 January 2015
In a year-end joint media release, Israel’s Government Press Office and the Jewish Agency trumpet that “aliyah” has hit a “ten-year high.”
According to the emailed release, more than 26,500 Jews moved to Israel in 2014, up about a third from the previous year.
The surge represented a huge increase in “the number of Jews who reached the conclusion that they have no other country,” according to Sofa Landver, minister of “aliyah and immigrant absorption.”
“Aliyah” is the term Israel uses for when Jews emigrate to historic Palestine (Israel and the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip) under the racist “Law of Return” which benefits only Jews and excludes indigenous Palestinians displaced in and since 1948 from returning home.
“I am excited to see the fruits of our many efforts to encourage aliyah, but we have not yet reached our goal,” the Russian-born Landver adds. “Our ministry continues to work … to promote the ingathering of the exiles, a vision that has accompanied the people of Israel since the state’s establishment.”
In other words, the Israeli government will not be satisfied until Jewish communities around the world, especially in Europe, have been totally eliminated.
The release does not mention the number of Jews who left Israel during the year for Europe, North America and other places which they deem preferable to live – an estimated one million Israelis live abroad.
Why are they coming?
“For the first time ever, France tops the list of countries of origin for immigrants to Israel, with nearly 7,000 new immigrants in 2014, double the 3,400 who came last year,” the release proclaims.
“This development has spurred The Jewish Agency and the Ministry of Aliyah and Immigrant Absorption to encourage Aliyah from France,” it adds.
The Jewish Agency is the government-backed organization that encourages such colonization.
“Additionally, some 5,840 new immigrants have come from Ukraine over the course of the year, compared to some 2,020 in 2013,” the release states, attributing the dramatic increase to “the ongoing instability in the eastern part of the country.”
“This year also saw a historic shift: for the first time in Israel’s history, the number of immigrants who came to Israel from the free world is greater than that of immigrants fleeing countries in distress,” Jewish Agency chair Natan Sharansky is quoted as saying.
This trend, Sharansky claims, is “evidence of Israel’s attractiveness as a place.” But this positive spin flatly contradicts Israel’s and the Jewish Agency’s own propaganda: they habitually insist that French Jews are now in greater danger than at any time since the Nazi occupation and must flee to Israel for their lives.
The release does admit that Ukrainian Jews are departing not due to the positive pull of Israel, but because of “instability.”
This means that the more there are incidents or reports of “instability” or prejudice affecting Jews, the more “excited” the Israeli minister of absorption will become.
The term anti-Semitism has historically referred to European Christian hatred of European Jews, as Joseph Massad explains, but it has since come to mean hatred of Jews as Jews in general. It has never meant historically, and should not be used, to mean a generalized hatred of people of the Middle East – mislabeled as “Semites” – including Palestinians.
A decade ago, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon caused outrage when he urged French Jews to move to Israel as soon as possible to escape a life-endangering surge in anti-Semitism. At the time, France deemed Sharon’s comments “unacceptable.”
Yet Israel has continued to target France’s Jewish population because it is the largest in Europe – estimated at half a million people – and is therefore an irresistible reserve in Israel’s attempt to fight off the supposed “demographic threat” from Palestinians who will soon, if they don’t already, outnumber Jews in all of historic Palestine.
Racism and anti-Semitism
Manifestations of bigotry against Jews do still exist in France. At the most extreme there have been violent and thankfully very rare incidents such as the murders of three children and an adult at a Jewish school in Toulouse in March 2012 by a gunman with a troubled history. The shooter, Mohammed Merah, had also killed three French paratroopers who he had targeted for being Muslim.
In addition to anti-Jewish prejudice, France and Europe more generally have a problem with racism and bigotry against many people who are not seen as coming from a traditional European Christian stock, principally those of African and North African ancestry, and Muslims.
The horrifying mass rallies against Muslims in Germany – which even German Chancellor Angela Merkel lately felt a need to condemn, despite her earlier encouragement of nativist and racist sentiments – attest to that.
Yet attacks on Jews have repeatedly been distorted and exaggerated by Israel and Zionist organizations for the purpose of creating the impression that Jews face such danger in France that they must leave.
This was the case last summer, when French, Israeli and international media spread false reports of an attack on a Paris synagogue by hordes of Muslim youths protesting Israel’s bombardment of Gaza.
The French journalist Nabila Ramdani, who witnessed the events, called these reports “pure fabrication.”
“I was in rue de la Roquette,” where the synagogue is located, Ramdani wrote last August of the 13 July incident, “and what actually happened was that a vigilante group called the LDJ (Ligue de Défense Juive, or Jewish Defence League) stormed away from the synagogue towards a largely peaceful protest in Place de la Bastille. Armed with metal batons, gas canisters and café chairs and tables, they initiated street fights with their enemies while chanting ‘F*** Palestine.’”
Yet the Jewish Agency’s online propagandist Avi Mayer didn’t wait for the facts to emerge to begin spreading incendiary reports:The listed media contact on the Israeli government’s press release about rising “aliyah” numbers is none other than Mayer.
The president of the synagogue, Serge Benhaim, can be seen on video a few days after the events categorically denying any attack on the synagogue. But this did not stop media from spreading the false reports even further.
This falsely reported incident was specifically cited by Liam Hoare as an example of the “factors pushing Jews out of France” in an article for The Jewish Daily Forward headlined “Brazen Anti-Semitism Sends French Jews Racing To Leave in Record Numbers.”
Based on the pretext of anti-Semitism at Palestine solidarity rallies, Paris authorities immediately banned demonstrations protesting Israel’s attack on Gaza, which at that moment was killing dozens of Palestinians every day.
(For an excellent analysis of these incidents, also read Richard Seymour’s article “The Anti-Zionism of Fools.”)
Conflating Judaism and Zionism
In addition to such false reports, Israel and its lobby groups have worked relentlessly to redefine “anti-Semitism” to include not just hatred of Jews as Jews, but any criticism of Israel’s racist and colonial practices toward Palestinians.This attempt to silence criticism of Israel by claiming it is anti-Semitic is neatly encapsulated in a statement from Jewish Agency chair Natan Sharansky last May. In the wake of the lethal shooting at the Jewish Museum in Brussels, Sharanksy admonished European leaders for allegedly failing to declare “all-out war against the demonization of the Jewish state.”
“While Jews as individuals are no longer demonized in Europe as they were in previous centuries,” Sharansky acknowledged, “the demonization of Israel – the collective Jew – continues to rise to new heights, creating a toxic atmosphere in which Jews live in fear and those who target them flourish.”
In Sharansky’s disturbing conception, Europe’s Jews are not only identified totally with Israel, but Israel actually comes to supplant them. Individual Jews and local Jewish communities in all their diversity are replaced by Israel, which claims to be the “collective Jew.”
“When Israel is singled out for condemnation and scorn, even as crimes against humanity and genuine humanitarian catastrophes rage throughout the Middle East and around the world, the message to those seeking a pretext to harm Jews is clear,” Sharansky added. “Until Europe declares war on the demonization of Israel, no security measure will help.”
Muddying the waters in this manner makes it much harder to identify and fight real instances of anti-Jewish prejudice. It also encourages the poorly informed to conflate Judaism with Zionism and to falsely blame Jews collectively for Israel’s policies.
The Israeli army’s use of the Paris Grand Synagogue as a recruitment center is perhaps the most insidious and dangerous way that Israel conflates its interests with those of Jews, to the detriment of Jews.
The false report of the attack on the Rue de la Roquette synagogue is not an isolated case. In 2013, for instance, the Jewish Agency’s Avi Mayer actively promoted false claims that Israeli filmmaker Yariv Horowitz had been the victim of a brutal anti-Semitic beating “by a gang of Arab teens” while visiting France.
The report was first disseminated by Israel’s Haaretz and then spread to US and other media.
Richard Prasquier, head of CRIF, France’s main Jewish communal body, later apologized for his organization’s dissemination of the report, admitting it was “false news.”
But Prasquier – one of the most prominent pro-Israel advocates in France – raised an important question about why the false report spread so widely.
“Did this testimony not receive all this publicity precisely because it bolsters the common sentiment in Israel that anti-Semitism is rife all over France and a Jew is at risk the moment he sets foot on the street?” Prasquier asked.
“If yes, then this is a typical case of what the Americans call ‘self-fulfilling prophecy’ because such false reports cannot but generate anti-Semitism in response,” he concluded.
Prasquier seems to implicitly understand that fabricated and exaggerated reports of hate crimes are bad for Jews, bad for harmonious community relations in France and bad for everyone committed to fighting racism in all its forms.
Such false reports, it should be added, which typically blame Arabs or Muslims, may very well contribute to Europe’s surging tide of Islamophobia.
But it is “good” for Israel and the consistent strategy of Zionism, past and present. As Joseph Massad has written, Zionism has from its inception relied on and sought alliances with anti-Semites in pursuit of its goals.
The excitement of Israeli minister Sofa Landver shows that nothing has changed.
Principled anti-racists should not be less vigilant about fighting anti-Semitism just because Israel and its Zionist affiliates habitually exaggerate, exploit and on occasion fabricate reports of hatred directed against Jews.
But they should be prepared to call it out and refuse to play along.
Fighting racism means fighting Zionism and anti-Semitism.
- Jewish Agency
- Avi Mayer
- Natan Sharansky
- Sofa Landver
- Israelis living abroad
- Ariel Sharon
- Joseph Massad
- demographic threat
- Angela Merkel
- Nabila Ramdani
- Yariv Horowitz
- Richard Prasquier
- Liam Hoare
Why Sharon said it then
Permalink eGuard replied on
As mentioned, in 2004 Sharon urged French Jews to move to Israel. The linked BBC report says, "A week ago [in 2004] President Jacques Chirac rushed to condemn an apparently anti-Semitic attack on a Paris train that turned out to be a hoax".
First reports said: "In the incident Friday, six young men accused the woman of being Jewish, then used a knife to cut her clothing and drew three swastikas on her stomach with a marker. The attackers also overturned the stroller carrying the woman's 13-month-old baby. [...] The attackers, who appeared to be of North African and African origin, ...".
One day later, after all politicians had rushed to judge, it came out she had fabricated the whole story. http://www.jewwatch.com/jew-ha...
It was right after this false accusation of ant-Semitism that Sharon made the remark about Jews in France. It deflected attention.
Quicksand of the Big Zionist Lie
Permalink Anthony Shaker replied on
What a tragedy that so many Jews have found their "new identity" in the hollow, self-destructive lie of racial supremacy. But we should shed a similar tear for the thousands of young people flocking to the Wahhabi cause in Syria and elsewhere with no hope of success.
Even in this tribal world order imposed by the West, seemingly created to measure for Israel, a Zionist racial colony with no borders or constitution has no future. Ask Zbigniew Brzezinski and the Trilateral Commissioners.
The present phase of its "existence" has dimmed its future to nil, Congress or no Congress. In fact, I would venture to say that Israel has entered its terminal phase, where new developments have already entered the realm of possibilities. For one, Istael runs a good risk of being liquidated by its own Western handlers, in one fell swoop, who so far have been shamelessly incompetent or unwilling to stop Israel's genocide of the Palestinian people.
To avoid this fate, Israel will have to sue for peace and negotiate the continued presence of its non-indigenous population with the indigenous population. The Crusaders had to do the same, and we know that most of them stayed on.
The trouble for Israel is that history repeats itself only as a farce. Israel has no Holy Roman Empire, Church of the Inquisition or tribal Franks ready to horde to its aid. It simply has no chance of continuing in its present form. The United States, like Western Europe, has only recently come to fathom this. And because it has, neither it nor the European Union fears any longer Israel's nuclear arsenal, which incidentally has been a running joke as well as an "open secret." Westerners only fear the likeliest outcome of their routing in the Middle East: namely, a mass Jewish return.
This return is inevitable if Israeli Jews do not quickly renounce their racist ideology and bury any flicker of hope that may stay on to dominate the region and extinguish the last roots of Palestinian society.
Is the left losing?
Permalink Saeeda Bukhari replied on
The rise of Islamophobia has become a product pumped by the Zionist far right and has neatly dove tailed and provided fertile ground for the traditional far right fascist groups to grow in strength.
The hate arguments are sophisticated and the left has been left floundering. Unable to combat Islamophobia and hence unable to cut away the feeding ground for the far right.
A growth in support for Palestine has not corresponded to a rise in anti-Islamophobia, inadvertently this undercuts the practical ability to change the course of Israel, as far right politicians and laws take hold, laws that disable dissent and opposition to Israel.
While the left is still unable to squarely confront the issue that a Zionist far right exists in Europe that has strongly united with more traditional elements, It is powerful and intent on creating a far right reality in Europe.
The left in countries like the UK is also unable to adequately tackle that the war on terror, has become a racist profiling of Muslims internationally, this leaves the Muslim community without left wing allies. This is a scary development as it leaves the most persecuted vulnerable. It also leaves the left morally bankrupt and unable to mobilise their natural allies.
Re-migration OUT of Israel: big secret...
Permalink Fennie Stavast replied on
Israel does not give any information on the jewish Israeli leaving Israel. In the Netherlands the number of Israeli's with double nationality, returning to the Netherlands, is a big secret too. A well-informed journalist mentioned 10.000 living in Amsterdam.
FROM A PASSIONATE ANTI-ZIONIST....
Permalink Peter Loeb replied on
The above article by Ali Albuminah and the comments by eGuard, Anthomy
Shaker and Saeeda Bukhari are all excillent.
Where does Joseph Massad discuss anti-Semitism (book, article etc.) to
nail down the source?
In Michael Prior CM's work THE BIBLE AND COLONIALISM: A MORAL
CRITIQUE Swee page 114, especially fottnote 11:
"In popular usage the disparaging epithet "anti-Semitic" is applied with little
to a perpatrator of any form of perceived anti-Jewishness, covering the
spectrum from Hitler's FINAL SOLUTION to a human rights critique of the
behavior of the State of Israel. The term is imprecise and problematic. The
eighteenth century division of peoples into racial categories reflected patterns
of similarity between (continued)...
FROM A PASSIONATE ANTI-ZIONIST, PART II
Permalink Peter Loeb replied on
languages. Because similarities between one group of languages were detected,they were clustered within a category SEMITIC languages. On that basis, a people (race?), SEMITES, was designated introducing the terms SEMITIC and ANTI-SEMITIC. The term.."Jew hatred" [is] more appropriately conveyed by the German terms JUDENHASS or JUDENFIENDSCHAFT."
---Peter Loeb, Boston, MA, USA
Zionists have always allied with actual Jew-haters
Permalink Brent replied on
The alliance and close operational link between European Zionism and actual European anti-Jewish movements and figures goes back to the very inception of the fascistic European Zionist movement. A movement which was itself of course formed in the image of anti-Jewish European nationalist-racialist movements of that time: just see the work of Shlomo Sand on this history.
Theodor Herzl himself famously wrote in his personal diaries: "The anti-Semites will become our most dependable friends, the anti-Semitic countries our allies."
Historian Lenni Brenner has also written important works documenting the shameful collaboration of Zionism with European fascism: particularly the Zionist alliance with Nazi Germany. See Lenni Brenner's books "Zionism in the Age of the Dictators" and "51 Documents: Zionist Collaboration With the Nazis".
Permalink Zionism Is Not Judaism replied on
1. "The term anti-Semitism has historically referred to European Christian hatred of European Jews, as Joseph Massad explains, but it has since come to mean hatred of Jews as Jews in general. It has never meant historically, and should not be used, to mean a generalized hatred of people of the Middle East – mislabeled as “Semites” – including Palestinians."
Whether one chooses to acknowledge it or not, it is no accident that the term "Semite" have been applied to the Turkic Ashkenazim ("Ashkenazi Jews" ) whose "ancestral lands" were based in the north Caucasus and not in historic Palestine/Canaan. That is, the great antipathy that Europeans had for Arab (Semitic) culture and custom, dating back at least to the time of the Crusades.
Labeling the Ashkenazim as "Semites" made them easier to vilify and attack.
2 The issue of fighting Zionism is not a "leftist" issue, it is a human (human rights) issue. Discrimination and preferential treatment given to a group based on their religion or ethnic background is just plain wrong. It does not matter what one's politics are. Not to mention, we haven't even mentioned the matter of ethnic cleansing/pogroms.
Good essay overall.