Monday, April 27, 2020

  • Monday, April 27, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
A short Twitter conversation I had yesterday with Yonah Lieberman, one of the founders of IfNotNow, is instructive.

He wrote:

Netanyahu’s most favored allies in America? Not Jews.
He chooses Evangelical Christians, whose religious beliefs include prophesies about Jews all being in the land of Israel so they can all be killed at once during the Second Coming of Jesus.
Essentially, he's saying that all evangelicals are antisemites.

They find that idea quite offensive, of course. But decades ago there was that undercurrent, which has - as far as I can tell - been eradicated in recent years.

I tweeted that back and pointed out that if one is going to say that your political opponents are antisemitic, perhaps you should look carefully at your allies.

This comment by @YonahLieberman was true several decades ago. Very unclear if it is now.

But the other side is that people like him ally with those who believe that all of Israel is an Islamic Waqf, and against Muslim law to give up an inch to Jews. Both Hamas and PA say this.
And this is indisputable. The idea of all of "historic Palestine" (a modern construct that coincides with the British Mandate borders) is an Islamic Waqf is part of Hamas' founding philosophy from 1988. But the idea quickly spread to the so-called "moderate" PLO:

 Dr. Mahmoud Al-Habbash, the Supreme Shari'ah Judge and Mahmoud Abbas' advisor on Religious and Islamic Affairs, said that selling or handing over lands and real estate in Jerusalem and all of Palestine to the Israeli occupation or settlers constitutes treason and a violation of Islamic law. ...
Al-Habbash emphasized that according to Islamic Shari'ah law, the entire land of Palestine is waqf (i.e., an inalienable religious endowment in Islamic law) and is blessed land, and that it is prohibited to sell, bestow ownership or facilitate the occupation of even a millimeter of it.
This is a pretty hardline position that excludes the possibility of Palestinians ever accepting a Jewish state. And it is new, meaning an Islamic precept is being applied in an ahistoric way to achieve an antisemitic aim.

I then added, "When you ignore antisemitism from your political allies, you don't have the right to speak out against antisemitism."

Lieberman couldn't respond to my point, of course, because the last thing he wants to do is alienate his antisemitic allies. So he tried to deflect:

When you call any criticism of Israel antisemitic, making it impossible to know what is and is not actual hatred/oppression of the Jewish people, you have no right to say who can and cannot speak out against antisemitism.
If his premise was true, perhaps he would have an argument. But it isn't:
But I don't. As far as I can tell, neither does anyone else. That's a straw man. No one disagrees that one can legitimately criticize Israel. Demonizing Israel is another story.

Which is exactly why you oppose @TheIHRA definition (of antisemitism.) It makes that distinction clearly.
The Israel-hating Left tries to shut down discussion about their alliance with antisemites by claiming that the Right tries to shut down all criticism of Israel by invoking antisemitism. Yet no one I'm aware of does that, and the IHRA definition of antisemitism makes that distinction crystal clear - a point that the Left pretends to ignore, as Yonah does here.

By rejecting IHRA, Lieberman and his allies are defending antisemitic hate speech, because they seem to believe that Palestinians cannot possibly criticize Israel without violating that definition.

Of course, he didn't respond. Because he cannot. He knows I'm right.





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