As you may or may not have noticed, the Obama Administration has appointed a “Special envoy to combat anti-Semitism,” Hannah Rosenthal. Jennifer Rubin interviewed her for the Washington Post today. Rubin writes,
I began with a simple question: What are the consequences for countries in Europe, South America and the Middle East that spew anti-Semitic rhetoric or condone and encourage anti-Semitism? In a lengthy interview, I never quite got an answer. She responded that her own hiring is more than “a baby step.” She said that it is important that she has a “seat at the table” and has “made major observations” in her year on the job. She touted her ability to spur non-Jewish leaders to speak out about anti-Semitism. That is all very commendable, but what are the consequences for those who persist in peddling anti-Semitism?
The State Department employs Natan Sharansky’s methodology for distinguishing anti-Israel criticism from anti-Semitism. Namely, language or conduct that demonizes, delegitimizes or imposes a double-standard on the Jewish state is anti-Semitism. Rosenthal enthusiastically described internal training for State Department officials to help them understand the distinction. — Washington Post
The State Department and Rosenthal are missing Sharansky’s point, which was that most anti-Zionism today simply is an expression of antisemitism, even if pictures of identifiable Jews eating babies are left out. They are devoting far too much effort to carefully distinguish between antisemitism and anti-Zionism, not so much to condemn antisemitism as to justify anti-Zionism.
It is important to understand that calls for Israel to be replaced by an Arab or Islamic state, whether they come from Fatah, Hamas, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or Noam Chomsky, are both political — anti-Zionist — and antisemitic.
The alliance between Hitler and the Grand Mufti al-Husseini, as well as the protection of Nazi war criminals by Arab states after WWII points to the identity between Jew-haters and Israel-haters.
So I am going to tell you what I would like to hear someone associated with the administration say. I doubt that Rosenthal, a former member of the board of the phony ‘pro-Israel’ group J Street, would agree:
In 1948, after almost 2000 years, Jewish sovereignty was re-established in the historical land of Israel. Today, antisemitic hatred and fear of the Jewish people as individuals (or members of an imagined conspiratorial community) has become focused on the Jewish state, the concrete manifestation of the Jewish people in the political world.
The primary manifestation of antisemitism today, then, is anti-Zionism: the concerted attempt to delegitimize the Jewish state in order to weaken it and thus deny self-determination and self-defense to the Jewish people.
The US affirms the proposition that anti-Zionism is antisemitism, and that it will support the right of the Jewish people to defend and keep its state in its historical homeland.
A demand for self-determination for a Palestinian Arab people is only acceptable insofar as it does not conflict with or detract from the right of the Jewish people to live peacefully in the Jewish state of Israel.
I’m not holding my breath.