Wednesday, January 18, 2012
The Jew Flu
The Jew Flu: The strange illness of Jewish anti-Semitism
Flus are contagious and incurable, but containable; the ancient and
resilient virus known as Jew Flu is no different.
By Uzi Silber
Tags: Israel news anti-Semitism
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The 1930s Labor Zionist leader Berl Katznelson asked "Is there another
People on Earth so emotionally twisted that they consider everything
their nation does despicable and hateful, while every murder, rape,
robbery committed by their enemies fill their hearts with admiration
This is Jew Flu - the virus of Jewish Anti-Semitism, and its Jewish
Anti- and Post-Zionist mutations, afflicting a small but inordinately
loud minority of Hebrews.
Its modern symptoms are a rejection of Israel's identity as a Jewish
state and a dismissal of its right to defend itself militarily, while
embracing the goals of its nihilistic Arab enemies. Those infected
with the virus wildly inflate Israeli sins real or imagined, while
excusing or rationalizing Palestinian anti-semitism and outrages
Those afflicted with Jew Flu often view the notion of Peoplehood as an
artifice, which implies a rejection of Jewish national
self-determination and acceptance of the 90-year-old Palestinian Arab
contention that Jews are not a nation but merely members of a
religion, and as such don?t merit a national home of their own.
Is Jew Flu a bona-fide illness? Michael Welner, a psychiatrist at New
York University, suggests that Jewish Anti-Semitism is akin to a
personality disorder, enabling a person to "derive some psychological
benefit from this pathological thinking."
What causes Jew Flu? Harvard psychiatrist Kenneth Levin argues for
twin culprits: so-called 'Stockholm Syndrome', where "population
segments under chronic siege commonly embrace the indictments of their
besiegers however bigoted and outrageous", as well as "the
psychodynamics of abused children who blame themselves for their
situation and believe they could mollify their tormenters if they were
Julie Ancis, a psychology professor at Georgia State University says
that it isn't "uncommon for a minority group with a history of
oppression and persecution to possess internalized self-hatred
regarding their cultural/religious identity."
I'm no therapist, but that won't restrain me from proposing my own
theory for the ultimate cause of Jew Flu. More on that later.
Since the defamations of Jew Flu victims are propagated across the
Internet and are extensively documented and challenged in many fine
books and articles, repeating them here would be redundant.
Suffice it to say that Noam Chomsky, Daniel Boyarin, Joel Kovel, Avrum
Burg, Ilan Pappe, Steve Quester, Jacqueline Rose, Tony Judt, Naomi
Klein, Michael Neumann, Ben Ehrenreich, (the apparently "outed")
Mahmoud Ahmedinejad and their ilk, spout pronouncements eerily similar
to the propaganda routinely ejaculated by representatives of Fatah,
Hamas or Hezbollah.
At the same time, a hearty "shout out" is due those who have made it
their business to forcefully rebut the Jewish defamers, including
Andrea Levin, Edward Alexander, Alan Dershowitz, David Solway and
others. Those interested in a quick and free primer on Jew Flu should
download Alvin Rosenfeld's UJA-sponsored brief, "Progressive Jewish
Thought and the New Anti-Semitism".
Jew Flu, of course, isn't new: It has lurked in our midst for
millennia. Jews collaborated with Greeks, Romans and Inquisitors;
Bolshevik self loathers displayed savagery towards their brethren;
their prophet Karl Marx was described by author Rafael Patai as the
"most influential of Jewish self haters", who thought "Israelite
faith" most repugnant, and whose rabid anti-Semitism was attributed by
the historian Simon Dubnow to "the natural hatred of the renegade for
the camp he deserted."
Incredibly, certain young Jews in Weimar Germany, members of a certain
Association of National-German Jews were sufficiently maddened by Jew
Flu to attempt to "identify and ingratiate (themselves) with the Nazi
Jew Flu developed its anti-Zionist strain in the decades preceding the
creation of Israel: renowned philosopher Martin Buber of Hebrew
University and others actually justified the Palestinian Arab pogroms
of 1921, 1929 and the late 30s, urging that desperate Jewish holocaust
refugees be permitted to enter Palestine only with Arab permission.
In 1944, and with the destruction of European Jewry proceeding apace,
Lessing Rosenwald, the President of the American Council for Judaism
equated the ideal of Jewish Statehood with the concept of a racial
state "the Hitlerian concept".
Following remission during the post-Holocaust years, Jewry experienced
a relapse of Jew Flu in the aftermath of the '67 Six Day War. In the
U.S., young Jewish radicals of the New Left branded Israel a fascist,
colonial power while praising Arab countries as progressive and
revolutionary - unsurprising since many were Soviet client states.
They remained largely silent as Soviet tanks crushed the 1968 Prague
Spring - presumably a 'progressive' development.
New Left sentiments found expression in Israel even during the
aftermath of the traumatic Yom Kippur War; at a Tel Aviv reception in
late 1973, my mother found herself amid a chatty crowd of cocktailing
cultural figures casually dismissive of their own country's right to
The infection among Israel's cultural elites intensified through the
Lebanon War and the two Intifadas that sandwiched the delusional Oslo
era. As author Aharon Meged lamented in 1994, there existed "an
emotional and moral identification by the majority of Israel's
intelligentsia, and its print and electronic media, with people
committed to our annihilation."
Epitomizing this "moral identification" were the certain prominent
Jewish journalists who, according to Israeli journalist Nahum Barnea,
crucially failed the so-called 'lynch test', by exhibiting an
inability to ever criticize Palestinian terror, even following the
widely televised gruesome execution of two Jews by a Palestinian mob
in Ramallah In 2000.
It was at this time that Jew Flu claimed a childhood friend of mine.
We'd come of age together in the early '80s, like-minded Zionists, he
more "Kahanish" in temperament. Immigrating to Israel the day after
graduation, he'd serve in theIDF, settle in Jerusalem, marry, spawn a
brood, and settle into the life of an Israeli academic, where anti
Zionist stances are common and open identification as an Israeli
patriot is tantamount to career suicide.
Infection struck during the Oslo years: before the millennium was out,
the youthful Kahanist yeshiva boy had morphed into a militant Jewish
Anti Zionist, mindlessly spouting hackneyed and malicious anti-Israel
canards on leftwing and Arab websites, and regularly consorting with a
posse of Arab academics in Ramallah.
This episode recalled a scene from "Radio Days", the Woody Allen movie
in which an uncle fasting on Yom Kippur indignantly watches the Jewish
communists next door brazenly barbecuing. In Holiday suit he marches
out the front door to scold the Reds on their evil ways, only to
return shortly after chewing on a chicken drumstick, indignantly
decrying religion as the opiate of the masses.
Those like my friend afflicted with Jew Flu deny their infection,
contending that criticism of Israel isn't Anti-Semitism or even
Helpfully, Natan Sharansky formulated his so-called 3D litmus test to
clearly distinguish mere Israel critics from Jew Flu victims, and has
allowed me to diagnose my old friend.
As it turns out, the afflicted regularly engage in at least one of the
following -Demonization (comparing Israeli actions to Nazism and
referring to Arab refugee camps as Auschwitz);- Double Standards
(singling out Israel for human rights abuses while ignoring the
blatant human rights violators such as Syria, Iran, Saudi Arabia,
Egypt, Palestinian Authority, North Korea, Cuba, China, Myanmar etc);
and Delegitimization (denying Israel the fundamental right to exist as
a Jewish state)
During March 2002, Jihadist suicide murderers were exploding on
Israeli buses every other day, massacring and maiming hundreds of Jews
in a cascade of latter-day pogroms; savage images of Haim Nahman
Bialik's monumental poem, "City of Slaughter" blazed across the broken
125 Jews were massacred and hundreds were wounded by Palestinian
suicide murderers that month. Yet unsurprisingly my stricken friend
My friend seems to amuse his Arab colleagues: Appearing at a
conference some years ago at Cairo's American University, an Egyptian
fellow panelist quipped to the audience that our mutual friend was
"more pro-Palestinian than me - I am more pro-Israel than him."
Incidentally, this college has since instituted a ban on Israeli academics.
At this point allow me to complicate things: It's easy to assume that
those struck with Jew Flu would be contemptuous of Jewish religious
observance. They often hold Marxist views, which would imply an
Yet what one should one make of my friend who performs Kiddush on
Friday nights, fasts on Yom Kippur and uses two sets of dishes in his
kosher kitchen? Would such Jewish customs be performed by an
Knesset speaker Avrum Burg is a lifelong modern orthodox Jew, a skull
capped davener whose Jew Flu was latent for years but burst out into
the open when he took to smearing Israel in Nazi-like browns.
Daniel and Jonathan Boyarin are pleasant, prominent and yarmulked
professors of Jewish history who don tefilin daily, daven on Shabbat
and holidays and are easily mistaken in appearance for West Bank
Yet Daniel is comfortable vilifying Israel regularly as a violent
outlaw state. And Jonathan admitted to me some years ago during an
especially sweaty Simchat Torah "hakafa" on the Lower East Side that
his views are identical if not even more radical than Daniel's (if
that was possible.)
Actually, it is interesting that the views of such radical yet
observant Jews resemble the tenets of Catholic Liberation Theology.
But could such a trio be accused of outright anti-Semitism?
The Burgs and Boyarins of this world have long revered another devout
Jew, the departed Yishayahu Leibowitz, a renowned scholar, recipient
of the Israel Prize, and editor of the Hebrew Encyclopedia, a
Jerusalemite who habitually referred to drafted Israeli soldiers who
happened to be defending his charmed way of life as "Judeo-Nazis".
Was Leibowitz an anti-Semite?
Submitting their pronouncements to the Sharansky test demonstrates
that even tefilin wearing, kosher food eating Kiddush reciters can
speak and write like anti-Semites.
But back to the elusive cause of Jew Flu: what makes one Jew
vulnerable and not another? Wouldn't a far larger proportion of Jews
fall prey to Jew Flu if, say, Stockholm syndrome was the culprit? Is
there a prime mover, some physiological or neurological smoking gun
pointing to a root cause?
There may be. David Brooks recently reported in the New York Times on
research by a Haifa University team led by Reem Yahya who studied the
brains scans of Arabs and Jews while showing them images of hands and
feet in painful situations.
Brooks reports that "the two cultures perceived pain differently. The
Arabs perceived higher levels of pain over all while the Jews were
more sensitive to pain suffered by members of a group other than their
This phenomenon was epitomized by Rosa Luxemburg, a prominent
Bolshevik and Jew Flu victim. "I have no room in my heart for Jewish
suffering," declared Rosa the Red. "Why do you pester me with Jewish
troubles? I feel closer to the wretched victims of the rubber
plantations of Putumayo or the Negroes in Africa... I have no separate
corner in my heart for the ghetto."
And then there's the modest story Ahmad the cabbie related to me last
week as we drove through Eilat-like Palm Springs: Ahmad's brother in
Nablus was employed for many years by an Israeli Jewish building
contractor. When the outbreak of Intifada in 2000 permanently barred
Ahmad's brother from work in Israel, his Jewish boss continued to pay
the brother's salary for five years.
The intriguing research out of Haifa suggests that Jews may very well
be inherently altruistic. But while exhibiting more sensitivity to
another group's pain is one thing, embracing the goals of people
openly committed to one's destruction is a form of madness.
So here's my ultimate theory for the cause of this nefarious virus:
Jew Flu is a condition in which being "more sensitive to pain suffered
by members of a group other than (one's) own metastasizes into a
malignant emotional and moral identification with people committed to
Like any other virus, Jew Flu is contagious but containable. Yet
2. The Israeli treasonous Left, led by the gyno-fascists from the
"Machsom Watch" terror group, continue to demonize Israel for running
checkpoints in the West Bank. All those poor "Palestinians" getting
inconveniences there. Better that Jewish school busses be blown to
bits than some Paletsinians get inconvenienced. Well I liked the
following message, reprinted here:
Reprint of message from Dan Friedman <email@example.com> wrote:
[It's been some time since we've heard about Arabs being humiliated
at Israeli checkpoints. That meme seems to have run out of steam. Yet
the devilish Israelis are still at it. If you need to see proof, the
story below should provide it. Now put yourself in an Arab terrorist's
shoes. You're stopped and frisked at an Israeli checkpoint, then
caught flagrante delicto and arrested when explosives and weapons are
found in your backpack. For a Palestinian jihadist trained and tasked
to kill as many Jews as possible, can you think of anything more
humiliating than that? df]
Palestinians caught with 10 pipe bombs near checkpoint
Two suspects arrested near military court where hearing on Fogel
family killer scheduled to take place
Military Police forces working at the Salem checkpoint caught two
Palestinians carrying 10 pipe bombs, a gun and several bullets. The
bombs were dismantled and the Palestinians were turned over to
An initial investigation suggests that the soldiers detected two
Palestinians in their 20s approaching a checkpoint near the military
court carrying two bags. After a check they discovered the contents of
Last week, a Palestinian man trying to cross a Jenin checkpoint was
caught in possession of 11 explosive devices.
"An investigation of the previous incident suggests that the suspects
planned on carrying out a terrorist attack at the court," the
battalion commander Lt. Col. Erez Raven said. "The other side is not
familiar with our MOs which change from time to time and we raised our
alert level in the past week. There were no terror threat alerts."
The Salem Military Court is scheduled to discuss a hearing on the
sentence of Amjad Awad, one of the murderers of the Fogel family.
3. There is a marvelous poster making the internet rounds, also
being printed on tee shirts and sweat shirts. Its wearers will no
doubt be arrested for "incitement." That will not stop me though.
You can see the poster here:
It says in Hebrew, "Sometimes you just have to take off the Kipa."
The word kipa means both yarmulka and dome. You then see people in
the poster removing the Dome of the Rock structure (not to be confused
with the Al-Aqsa Mosque) from where it pollutes the Temple Mount. The
Dome of the Rock is not a mosque.