While most forms of anti-Jewish sentiments and behaviours are undebatable, at the heart of the ‘Anti Semitism on the Left’ controversy is the complex question of whether criticism of Israel or Zionism is charged by, and/or charges, anti-Jewish sentiments. As Israeli, British and Jew-ish, I touch on this complexity, while warning comrades and Jews of three effects of the debate.
First, that the outcry of these issues underestimates or distracts others from the more dangerous and immediate racism (against Jews and others) in the Right, due to being played by (or playing into) the ‘balancing’ mainstream media tendencies.
Second, from the way in which relatively-disproportionate coverage of anti-Jewish racism, in comparison to more urgent, broad and violent forms of British and European racism, is itself racist, too (e.g. Windrush, Grenfell, Acid attacks, drowning refugees, selling arms, etc.).
And, third, of avoiding the type of victimhood that this allows, one which makes excuses for racist practices and tendencies in Israel, and ignores our past mistakes of not doing enough to tackle them. We must therefore allow, even encourage, criticism and accountability of Israel/Zionism.