Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Israeli "Apartheid"?

1. Allow us to introduce Lisa Bloom, a leftist feminist

Writing in the Haaretz business section (piece not available online),
Sistuh Lisa has published a headline entitled "Israel is as Racist as the
American South in the 60s". Its theme is that Israel is an apartheid
society (her word). She saw fit to publish this the very week when
anti-Semites all over the globe are organizing boycotts of "racist"
Israel. She appears to be well connected, as I found several web
references to her testifying at the Knesset.

Her argument? She begins by telling the sob stories of an Arab who was
turned down for a job at a cafe, and of a women she claims applied for a
job and was turned down, supposedly because she was a woman. Both the
Arab and the woman sued under Israel's anti-discrimination laws and won. One
would think this proves how progressive Israeli society is, right?

Wrong! Bloom leaps to the conclusion that both cases prove that Israel
is an "apartheid" society "like the American South in the 60s", where
Bloom herself grew up. She proposes that everyone fight Israeli "racism" by
boycotts. She means boycotts of stores and services that refuse to serve
ethnic/gender groups, and I defy you to find any like that in Israel. But
of course most people will not read the small print and will conclude
that yet another Israeli gonzo leftist is calling for a boycott of
"apartheid Israel".

Finally, after celebrating Israel's anti-discrimination laws that
prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex or ethnicity, Bloom goes on to
demand discrimination on the basis of sex and ethnicity in the name of
affirmative action.

Meaning affirmative apartheid.

2. Glimmerings of Sanity on the Left?
June 9, 2006

Left Turn
June 9, 2006

At first blush, the Euston Manifesto doesn't seem explosive. Conceived in
a London pub and hashed out online, and signed by left-wing, mostly
British academics and journalists, it declares itself for democracy and
freedom of ideas, and against racism and terror. OK, great. Torn by the
Iraq war and the fight against terrorism, Britain's left, like some in the
U.S., could use a few reminders of what is at stake.

Yet since its unveiling in April, the Euston Manifesto has generated
fierce debate. On the kinder end, Daniel Finkelstein, in the Times of
London, called it "a gigantic waste of time and energy" that seeks to
salvage an unsalvageable left. Brendan O'Neill, meanwhile, wrote in the
Guardian that "the Euston group and al Qaeda are cut from the same cloth."

Just what could be so provocative? Among other things, the manifesto
battles the all-sins-are-equal attitude epitomized by Mr. O'Neill. To wit,
the Euston group says it "reject(s) the double standards with which much
self-proclaimed progressive opinion now operates," which leads, for
instance, to "grotesque public comparison of Guantanamo with the Gulag."
Its stand on racism includes fighting anti-Semitism, not a popular cause
around fashionable London dinner tables. It is equally comprehensive on
terror, "which cannot be justified by the argument that it is done in a
cause that is just."

Norm Geras, a scholar of Marxism and professor emeritus at the University
of Manchester, was one of the manifesto's principal drafters. By phone, he
told us that he got fed up with people trying to pardon suicide bombers.
"There's nothing wrong with trying to understand things in a genuine way,
but some voices are making excuses," he said. One of the most notorious
was Tariq Ali in the Guardian on the day after last July's London bombings
killed 52. "The cause of these bombs is the unstinting support given by
New Labour and its prime minister to the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and
Iraq," he wrote.

The manifesto's anti-anti-Americanism has also stirred debate. The U.S.
"is the home of a strong democracy with a noble tradition behind it and
lasting constitutional and social achievements to its name." Nice to hear.
Especially as it must come as news to the readers of the New Statesman,
the house organ of Britain's highbrow left, which first published the

So Britain now appears to have a hawkish intellectual left, as does
America in some small pockets, to complement a Labour Prime Minister who
pioneered "humanitarian intervention" from Kosovo to Iraq. It's a welcome
development; Britain's political debate will benefit from the Eustonites.

URL for this article:

3. Bravo for Fischer:


Women in Green Co-Chair Ruth Matar and Women in Green Board Member
Levisohn, filed a complaint yesterday at the Jerusalem Moriah Police
against Dana Olmert, the daughter of the Israeli Prime Minister. Dana
Olmert, together with her radical leftist friends, in a demonstration last
Saturday Night, called Army Chief of Staff, Dan Halutz, a "murderer" and,
according to news reports, sang "long live the "intifada"!

Women In Green Co-Chair Nadia Matar has been indicted, and accused of
"insulting a public official." She compared Disengagement Authority Head
Jonathan Bassi to the "Judenrat" of Berlin in 1942.

Her trial is scheduled to commence on Wednesday, June 14, 2006 at the
Court in Jerusalem, at 10:00 AM.

Will Attorney General Mazuz likewise feel compelled to indict Dana Olmert
her left-wing friends for the insulting epithets they hurled at the Army
Chief of Staff, Dan Halutz, a Public Official? Or will it make a
that she is the daughter of the Israeli Prime Minister?

(Afterword - Some people have begun calling Ehud Olmert Abu Dana -- SP)

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