Tuesday, February 03, 2009
Yale University's Edward H. Kaplan and Charles A. Small found "that anti-Israel sentiment consistently predicts the probability that an individual is anti-Semitic, with the likelihood of measured anti-Semitism increasing with the extent of anti-Israel sentiment observed." [abstract and citation given below]
Europe Reimports Jew Hatred
The mythical Arab Street now reaches deep into Paris, London, Berlin and Madrid.
By DANIEL SCHWAMMENTHAL
Give Giancarlo Desiderati credit for his unintellectual honesty. While most left-wing detractors of Israel claim their animosity toward the Jewish state has nothing to do with anti-Semitism, the head of a small Italian union, Flaica-Uniti-Cub, wasted no time with such sophism. Having long called for a boycott of Israeli goods, Mr. Desiderati last week made the logical next step. "Do not buy anything from businesses run by the Jewish community," his group's Web site urged Italians.
Jews around Europe are increasingly under attack since Israel decided two weeks ago to defend itself after years of rocket fire at its civilian population. There have been arson attempts on synagogues in Britain, Belgium and Germany. Police last week arrested Muslim protesters who wanted to enter the Jewish quarter in Antwerp. Several Danish schools with large Muslim student bodies say they won't enroll Jewish kids because they can't guarantee the children's safety. In France, a group of teenagers attacked a 14-year-old girl last week, calling her "dirty Jew" while kicking her.
At rallies in Germany and the Netherlands over the past two weeks, protesters shouted, "Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the Gas." In Amsterdam, Socialist lawmaker Harry van Bommel and Greta Duisenberg, widow of the first European Central Bank president, marched at the front of one such "peace" demonstration. They didn't join in the background chorus calling for another Holocaust. Instead, they chanted, "Intifada, Intifada, Free Palestine." Mr. Van Bommel later insisted this wasn't a call for Jewish blood but for "civil disobedience" -- a laughable defense given that terrorists during the last intifada murdered more than 1,000 Israelis.
Most of the anti-Jewish violence and protests in Europe come from immigrants. In what may have been a Freudian recognition of the changing face of Europe, CNN two weeks ago used footage of anti-Israeli protesters in London in a report about the growing anger in the "Arab and Muslim world." The mythical Arab Street now reaches deep into Paris, London, Berlin and Madrid.
After a burning car was rammed into a gate outside a synagogue in Toulouse last week, President Nicolas Sarkozy issued a statement that was as morally confused as his judgment of Israel's Gaza offensive. Mr. Sarkozy, who condemned both Hamas terror and Israel's attempt to stop it, also blurred the distinction between the victims and perpetrators of anti-Semitism in France.
His country "will not tolerate international tensions mutating into intercommunity violence," he warned, suggesting that the violence in France comes not only from French Muslims but Jews as well. Mr. Sarkozy's comments also suggest that the fighting in Gaza is the cause for attacks on Jews in France -- that is, that the Mideast conflict is fueling anti-Semitism in Europe. It is exactly the other way around.
The rage against the Jews that is exploding in Europe has been carefully nurtured; it is not spontaneous sympathy for fellow Muslims in Gaza. How else to explain the silence when Muslims in other conflicts, from Darfur to Chechnya, are being killed?
The depth of anti-Semitic propaganda in Palestinian and other Muslim societies is one of the most underreported facts about the Middle East. It is this anti-Semitism that predisposes Muslims in Europe to attack Jews and fuels the Mideast conflict. The hatred predates Israel's creation. To illustrate this point: The Palestinian leader during World War II, Hajj Amin al Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, conspired with Hitler to bring the Holocaust to Palestine. Luckily, the British stopped the German troops in Africa. The Mufti spent the war years in Berlin and was later indicted for war crimes but with the help of the Muslim Brotherhood escaped to Egypt. Hamas is the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Hamas and other Islamists continue what the Mufti had helped to start: a blend of European anti-Semitism and Islam-inspired Jew hatred. The rejection of Israel's right to exist is what drives their attacks. The media, though, largely ignores Hamas's ideology and its crimes of hiding its leaders and weapons among its own civilian population, and demonizes Israel's attempt to protect its citizens.
Hamas and other Islamists are not even trying to hide their ideology. Just read the Hamas charter or check out Hamas TV, including children's programs, for a nauseating dose of murderous anti-Semitism. Last week, the French broadcasting authorities banned Hamas TV for inciting violence and hatred. Unfortunately, just like Hezbollah TV, which is also banned in Europe for its anti-Semitic and jihadi content, audiences here can still receive these programs due to Saudi Arabia's Arabsat and Egyptian satellite provider Nilesat.
The Islamist variation of Jew hatred is now being reimported to Europe. Muslims in Europe, watching Hamas and Hezbollah TV with their satellite dishes, are being fed the same diet of anti-Semitism and jihadi ideology that Palestinians and much of the Middle East consume.
This brings a unique challenge to the difficult integration of Muslims in Europe. When it comes to issues like Shariah law and terrorism, one can expect a true "clash of civilizations." There is no Western tradition that would justify "honor killings." Anti-Semitism, on the other hand, is not alien to Europe's culture -- to the contrary, the Continent once excelled at it and many still share the feeling.
A Pew study from September shows 25% of Germans and 20% of French are still affected by this virus. In Spain, 46% have unfavorable views of Jews. Is there really no connection between this statistic and the fact that the Spanish media and government are among Europe's most hostile toward the Jewish state? Is it just a coincidence that Europe's largest anti-Israel demonstration took place Sunday in Spain, with more than 100,000 protesters?
A 2006 study in the Journal of Conflict Resolution based on the survey in 10 European countries suggests otherwise. Yale University's Edward H. Kaplan and Charles A. Small found "that anti-Israel sentiment consistently predicts the probability that an individual is anti-Semitic, with the likelihood of measured anti-Semitism increasing with the extent of anti-Israel sentiment observed."
With little hope that the media coverage will become more balanced and the incitement of the growing Muslim community will abate, the Jews in Europe are facing uncertain times.
Mr. Schwammenthal edits the State of the Union column.
Journal of Conflict Resolution, Vol. 50, No. 4, 548-561 (2006)
Anti-Israel Sentiment Predicts Anti-Semitism in Europe
Edward H. Kaplan
School of Management, Yale University; Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, School of Medicine, Yale University; Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Yale University
Charles A. Small
Institute for Social and Policy Studies, Yale University, Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy
In the discourse surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, extreme criticisms of Israel (e.g., Israel is an apartheid state,the Israel Defense Forces deliberately target Palestinian civilians), coupled with extreme policy proposals (e.g., boycott of Israeli academics and institutions, divest from companies doing business with Israel), have sparked counterclaims that such criticisms are anti-Semitic (for only Israel is singled out). The research in this article shines a different, statistical light on this question: based on a survey of 500 citizens in each of 10 European countries, the authors ask whether those individuals with extreme anti-Israel views are more likely to be anti-Semitic. Even after controlling for numerous potentially confounding factors, they find that anti-Israel sentiment consistently predicts the probability that an individual is anti-Semitic, with the likelihood of measured anti-Semitism increasing with the extent of anti-Israel sentiment observed.
EU Delegation Harangues Vaclav Claus and Demands that Klaus Fly the Flag on Prague Castle
London's reaction to the Gaza war shows it is giving up against jihad.
By MELANIE PHILLIPS | From today's Wall Street Journal Europe
In Britain, the war in Gaza has revealed the extent to which the media, intelligentsia and political class have simply crumbled in the face of the global jihad.
The U.K. is a major player in European and world politics and is America's most significant strategic ally. Until now, it has been considered one of Israel's firm supporters and a linchpin of the Western defense against the world-wide Islamist onslaught. With the reaction to Gaza, however, that reputation is no longer sustainable.
Years of demonizing Israel and appeasing Islamist extremism within Britain have now coalesced, as a result of the media misrepresentation of the Gaza war as an atrocity against civilians, in an unprecedented wave of hatred against Israel and a sharp rise in attacks on British Jews.
Throughout the war, London's streets have witnessed a hallucinatory level of violent and explicit support for Hamas from Muslims, members of the far left and supposedly progressive individuals.
Night after night, Israel's embassy in well-to-do Kensington found itself under violent siege. Demonstrators attempted to storm the building, howling their support for the terrorist body whose genocidal intentions toward Israel and the Jews necessarily includes killing every one of the occupants inside.
Certainly, there have been anti-Israel protests around the world. But in Britain, not only have these been particularly violent but the authorities have done nothing to stop such incitement of hatred.
The police told pro-Israel demonstrators on at least one occasion to put away their Israel flags because they were "inflammatory." Yet officers allowed some anti-Israel demonstrators to scream support for Hamas -- and even to dress up as hook-nosed Jews pretending to drink the blood of Palestinian babies.
In general, the police have reacted passively to the violence. One recent video clip captured the astonishing spectacle of Muslims stampeding through London's West End hurling traffic cones and other missiles at the police, all the time shrieking "Allahu akbar" and "cowards." The police ran and stumbled backward rather than standing their ground and stopping the rampage.
Not only has such violence barely been reported. There has also been no acknowledgment of the explicitly Islamist nature of these demonstrations. Keffiyeh-clad demonstrators prostrated themselves in prayer or shouted "Allahu akbar" as they attacked Jewish-owned or -founded stores, such as Starbucks and Tesco, on numerous occasions.
Instead, the political class has simply regurgitated Hamas propaganda. In a debate in the House of Commons last week, one MP after another expressed horror at Israel's supposed crimes against humanity in Gaza.
More serious still, Foreign Office Minister Bill Rammell cited as fact the Hamas claim that 300 children had been killed in Gaza, even though Israel has given a much lower figure, and said the Israeli action was "disproportionate" and the bombing was "indefensible and unacceptable."
Similarly, Prime Minister Gordon Brown, commenting after this weekend's cease-fire that "too many innocent people" had been killed, made no mention of Israel's strenuous attempts to minimize civilian casualties, nor Hamas's responsibility for holding Gaza's civilians hostage.
In fact, the British government has effectively taken the view that Israel should not be allowed to defend itself by military means against the Hamas rockets that ministers have taken care to condemn.
From the second day of the war, Foreign Secretary David Miliband was calling for an immediate cease-fire by both sides. Since Hamas would take no notice, this in practice amounted to pressure upon Israel to stop defending itself.
It was Britain which took the lead in framing the United Nations resolution calling upon Israel to withdraw all its forces from Gaza while making no mention whatever of Hamas. And it was Britain which also drew a disquieting moral equivalence between Hamas terrorism and Israeli self-defense.
Certainly, neither Mr. Miliband nor Mr. Brown -- a reputed supporter of Israel -- can be unaware that it was Tony Blair's refusal to call for an immediate cease-fire by Israel in the 2006 Lebanon war that finally led his MPs, already enraged by his support for the war in Iraq, to force him prematurely out of office.
But Britain's new coolness toward Israel is due to much more than this. The government's failure to support Israel's war against Hamas as the front line of the West's defense against the global Islamic jihad reflects its failure in turn to acknowledge the nature of that world-wide phenomenon.
Last Thursday, Mr. Miliband wrote in the Guardian that there was no single, unified Islamist threat but merely a set of various local grievances, such as Kashmir or the Golan Heights. Such startling ignorance of the goals and ideological antecedents of the Islamic jihad, from Hamas to Hezbollah to Pakistan's Lashkar-e-Taiba, is of a piece with the British government's stubborn refusal to accept that the West is under assault from a war of religion.
The government denies this fact because it does not want to face up to the unpalatable realities of fighting such a war. So although "middle Britain" is beginning to grasp that the Islamists in Gaza are the same as those rampaging through the streets of London, ministers are intent on appeasing Muslim extremism and intimidation both at home and abroad.
Accordingly, while Britain's security services have had significant success in smashing Islamic terrorism plots, government strategy for combating Islamist extremism rests upon seeking to mollify Britain's two million or so Muslims by avoiding confrontation -- which means turning a blind eye to threatening statements.
Recently, prominent British Muslims who advise ministers against Islamist extremism wrote an open letter making the veiled threat that unless the government condemned Israel there would be a rise in violence in Britain.
Ministers' openly stated fear that this will indeed happen as a result of the war in Gaza makes them anxious to show Britain's Muslims that they oppose Israel's actions. They don't understand that, by showing such weakness in the face of intimidation, they are not just betraying their Israeli ally but also undermining the Western defense against the jihad.
Across the spectrum, Britain's elites are terrified of dealing with militant Islamism. It is hard to avoid the conclusion that, in a pattern which goes back to the foundational Christian blood libel against the Jews, they are concealing their fearful inability to deal with Islamist aggression by displacing the blame onto its Israeli victims instead.
Ms. Phillips is a columnist for the Daily Mail and author of "Londonistan" (Encounter Books, 2005).
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