Blogroll Me! How This Old Brit Sees It ...: All About Some '<i>Best Of British</i>' Jews

11 February 2007

All About Some 'Best Of British' Jews

Brit Professor Tony Judt.

For far too long (as far as we and many others are concerned), fear of falling foul of finger pointing fanatics shrieking accusations of anti-Semitism has stifled almost all sensible attempts at civilised and intelligent, Israel related discussion.

However, thanks to growing numbers of brave British Jews it seems things are finally beginning to change -- and change for the better.

This header from today's UK Observer (the Sunday version of the Guardian), should help those still 'in the dark' to get the general gist (in ultra-short-order-time), as to what is and has been, happening.

The new Jewish question

A furious row has been raging in the international Jewish community over the rights and wrongs of criticising Israel.

At its centre is a British historian who accuses his fellow Jews in the US of stifling any debate about Israel.

His opponents say his views give succour to anti-Semites. One thing's for sure: any appearance of consensus over the Middle East has been shattered.

Gaby Wood
Sunday February 11,
The Observer
Here's a clip that's typical of this piece's thrust and content.

In the past two weeks, the Judt Affair has entered an entirely new gear. In an essay written by the Holocaust scholar Alvin Rosenfeld and published by the American Jewish Committee, Judt's views - and those of other 'progressive Jews' such as the American playwright Tony Kushner and the British academic Jacqueline Rose - were expressly linked to anti-Semitism.

That row was reported in the New York Times, giving it an unprecedented prominence, and since then the story has opened the floodgates of a debate that until now has been shrouded in fear.

Americans have long been in the grip of a cultural taboo that is characterised by Judt as follows: 'All Jews are silenced by the requirement to be supportive of Israel, and all non-Jews are silenced by the fear of being thought anti-Semitic, and there is no conversation on the subject.'

Erm, excuse us? Anti-Semitic Semites?

Isn't that about as barmy as labeling This Old Brit as anti-British? Or, Richard as an anti-radical?

Well, whatever. Examine another extract from the piece we're placing before you.

Judt tells a story about an Israeli journalist who was in Washington in the 1960s. 'The Israeli ambassador was retiring, and the journalist asked him what he thought was his biggest achievement. The ambassador said: "I've succeeded in beginning to convince Americans that anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism."

There has been a progressive emergence of a conflation,' Judt explains. 'It didn't just happen naturally. And it was pushed quite actively in the Seventies and Eighties, to the point at which it became so normal in this country that it was for a while the default assumption. It's really only in the last five to eight years that it's started to be questioned.'

The actions of very pro-Israel Jewish organisations - for instance, making carefully placed phone calls relating to certain public speakers - are, Judt believes, now born of panic rather than confidence.

'They've lost control of the debate,' he says. 'For a long time all they had to deal with were people like Norman Finkelstein or Noam Chomsky, who they could dismiss as loonies of the left.

Now they're having to face, for want of a better cliché, the mainstream: people like me who have a fairly long established record of being Social Democrats (in the European sense) and certainly not on the crazy left on most issues, saying very
critical things about Israel.

They're not used to that, so their initial response has been to silence people if they could, and their second response has been to ratchet up the anti-Semitic charge.' Judt thinks it's telling that the New York Times 'is willing to report these issues and let reporters quote both sides. In the past, you would have had silence.'

We could not agree more wholeheartedly.

Moreover, we'd remind every honourable, honest man and woman - regardless of race, religion, creed or colour - that silence is the greatest sedition.

Read the rest of this awesome article and please, please, please pass this piece on.

Since suddenly it seems that at long last, there's a brilliant bright light appearing at the end of a long dark tunnel.

Therefore, it is imperative to see to it that none of those who have for so long been blinded by bigotry (be it by accident or by design), can any longer connive to convince any others otherwise.



Anonymous Charles said...

One of your best, Old Brit. You're a brave man. Pity there are so few around.

4:52 pm  
Anonymous Mark Abbott said...

Awesome article, well worth a full read ... and reflection.

Thanks, OB!

5:20 pm  
Anonymous martha said...

Richard, you have no idea how this cheers me up. It's about time people began acting like responsible adults when it comes to this topic.

You would not believe how - over the years - my own family has been almost torn apart through infighting over such matters.

Thank you so much for helping air this long overdue news.

5:39 pm  
Anonymous Rex said...

It's worth noting that even though the Guardian\Observer are paying heed to these most welcome developments few other MSM outlets are.

Seemingly, advertisers still rule the roost elsewhere ~ unfortunately.

6:57 pm  
Blogger Sophia said...


Thank you very much for having typed this link on my blog. Yesterday I was listening to the debate on the Israel Lobby sponsored by the London review of books in NYC last September and hosting Mearsheimer as wqell as supporters and critics of his paper. Judt was in the panel and his interventions were powerful.

Here is the link

8:13 pm  
Anonymous kiwi said...

Wow. That piece is SOME read and that prof is SOME guy.

8:50 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

About time someone took notice. Thanks.

10:39 pm  
Blogger bootlian said...

Many years ago I spent time in NYC. At a party the subject of WW11 came up. One thing led to another and a young lady New Yorker complained to another Brit that Europe did nothing to save Jews from Hitler. I pointed out that most of Europe could hardly help save anyone at all as it had mainly already been beaten, invaded and occupied by the Nazi armies.

She mumbled, turned on her heel and walked away. She never spoke to me again - throughout the following three months I was there.

She was a junior school teacher.

I still wonder to this day whether or not I had taught her anything -- and how or what difference it made to any of her own 'teachings' thereafter.

11:15 pm  
Anonymous wajdi o said...

The huge gap between the majority of American and British Jews is every bit as wide as it is between American and British Christians. And in each case (though I personally am neither Christian nor Jew), I know which ones I'd rather deal with. And no offence intended to any American friends but it's the British variety in both cases.

As I've never met an Israeli national I can't honestly pass a personal opinion in that dept. To coin a phrase ~ I only know what I read in the papers.

11:35 pm  
Anonymous Tom V said...

Good article which tries to be balanced and moderate in the same time.

I think the ambassador was just a little bit hasty, to celebrate his triumph about his achievement, to convince Americans that anti-Zionism equates anti-Semitism. That may had been a high tide of Zionist propaganda victory, but it have not succeeded fully in America, and Worldwide it succeeded even less.

The reason why not and never will, is that because a good (and better) portion of those people who knew, enjoyed, practiced, and cheriched their ancient and inallianable Free Speech Rights, by the proud and Free Western Civilisation, will never going to give-up those rights, (barring brutal physical violence against them,) no matter how many intimidation tactics, or simple brainwashing indoctrination the Zionists will try. It will fail, and fail again.

Beside, if one state and a governing group deserved to be criticized relentlessly, and as harshly as possible in the World, that is that brutal, racist and loathsome entity, which calls itself Israel, and the political classes and elite who rule over it.

3:19 am  
Anonymous griffon said...

Here's a link to add to the Jewish revolt-
I'd link the original but there are other useful links here.

From GlobalResearch there's more stark facts regarding the likely coming nuclear war-

And for those who haven't yet read Mohammad bin Laith's piece up on Gorillas guides, go forth and read. This is a must!

5:00 pm  
Anonymous Rosemary said...

Thanks, Richard, for frankly discussing a subject that is extremely important to me for reasons I've mentioned before.

Now I am off to read Griffon's interesting-sounding links.

5:07 pm  
Anonymous Tom V said...

Rex; Brotherly greetings to you.

I'm sorry to say, but there is useless to complain about the MSM. It is a complete and thorough disgrace and outrage, that our public airwaves, (which ultimately supposed to belong to the citizenry as a whole), are usurped and occupied by a small, vicious and alien group, namely Zionist and Elitist Jews, who follow an agenda, which is detrimental to the vast majority of us, to our culture, our tradition, our religion and on top of that, it encites fear and hatred by deception, omission and lies, and it relentlessly pits us against other people, who would not harm us, if we wouldn't harm them first.

(For dissenters: Don't try to namecall me!
It is futile and I assure you, it's actually quite counterproductive, because it only strengthen my resolve further. I challenge you to convince me, why should I read the exclusive ownership and management of our mass-media by Zionist Jews, as anything else, than what it is?)

Rex, complains and murmurs will no longer help. Finally we have to take some responsibility for our own actions, even if it's such seemingly trivial thing, as consuming MSM products.
In the MSM sphere, we have only two choices left which are still completely within our right and capacity to do: Either we endorse it, (and finance it, no matter how reluctantly) - or reject it. I made my choice last summer, during the latest Zionist outrage in Lebanon, when I got thoroughly disgusted by the primitive, biased and unjust coverage pervading all across the Canadian TV landscape. (The imported US channels have been total 'writes-off' already, quite a long time since earlier still.)
I called the satellite company and cancelled the whole junk in its entirety, and re-channeled my financial support to a few blogsites I personally like, and desperately need my financial support.
BTW. There is no choice offered to the customers in our 'glorious free market system,' to individually select a few nature channels and so forth, without the offensive, so called 'basic channel' swill, so I regard those as as a sad but necessary 'collateral damage'.

I'm thoroughly and unreservedly happy about it Rex, because I feel more empowered. I read more, and I read deeper than before. Moreover encouragingly, I haven't suffered any 'withdrawal symptoms' as a result.
(In all honesty, I was catching myself to watch TV gradually less-and-less the last 6 months before the decision, and I was more-and-more dissatisfied by their thoroughly unintelligent, shallow and biased reporting and presentation of anything they have touched. The cowardly invasion of Lebanon, its mindlessly brutal destruction, and the mass-media wretched, uniformly kow-towing coverage, was more-or-less only the final straw.)

I heartily recommend to you, (and any other reader in this blog), to follow my example, because it liberates you from them, and it registers a strong vote of protestation, which even they can not ignore.

5:24 pm  
Blogger Richard said...


Cracks in the wall - Richard Silverstein

10:01 pm  
Anonymous Rosemary said...

Griffon, the Gorilas Guide link is really emotionally moving. I've copied it and formatted it to print out and send to my two Senators and my Congressman.

They MUST read it. It is so personal and eloquent, I am hoping the staff member who vets these things in each case will be moved enough to insist the boss reads it.

I feel like that is the only thing I can do right now that has a chance of being effective.

One of them says he wants the US to deploy in 6 months, but without much conviction, one of them is on the fence and the third is Jewish and he has not said anything.

So we shall see.

10:06 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brit, shalom.

8:40 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep assimilating your immigrants with those "lovely" thoughts of Isreal and Americans.

You've done a great job so far.

8:07 pm  
Blogger Richard said...

That's two, stupid. Next strike and you're out.

8:30 pm  

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