Friday, August 27, 2010

America's Zionists

Tablet Magazine cites a new report whereby America's Jews support as part of their life-cycle: the older they get, the more they support. This apparently contradicts the Peter Beinart thesis of a few months ago, whereby younger Jews are disillusioned.

The part of the story which apparently isn't open to interpretation is that the largest and most active group of Israel's supporters aren't Jews at all. They're Christian. Here's a story about the Christian AIPAC, CUFI, which wasn't even around five years ago.

On a different matter, Martin Indyk explains in the NYT why, contrary to common wisdom, the time actually is ripe for successful Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations. It seems to me he doesn't deal with any the substantial issues, but hope springs eternal, and I'm willing to hope too. Then again, here's a fellow who has been reading the NYT all his life but has decided it's no longer worth his time. (h/t Brumsky).


Anonymous said...

for what it's worth

Zwei der größten Menschenfeinde,
Furcht und HOFFNUNG, angekettet,
Halt' ich ab von der Gemeinde;

two of the greatest enemies of menkind,
Fear and HOPE I keep in chains away from the community/congregation)
now I neither like Goethe nor do I claim to be able to make sense out of Faust II but from other of his stuff I've concluded that he knew a thing or two. Thus when he claims something as unusual as this I can't help keeping it in the back of my mind.


AKUS said...

A few years ago I used to smile politely , perhaps smugly, when a very dear friend used to rant about the NYT's anti-Israeli bias, and its attempts to paint lipstick on the pig of Islamic extremism.

Well, she was right, and I was wrong, and I stopped reading it a couple of years ago except of an occasional article, specially on some topic such as science or the latest unnecessary twist in cell-phone technology.

It has become a sad example of a sad attempt to save something no longer worth saving by catering to the prejudices of the nutcases of America.

I'm afraid the WP is heading down the same path, with several articles every week intended to show us that most Moslems are just like you and me, despite those other ones that do all the killing.

Sylvia said...

Zionist Jews, anti-Zionist Jews, assimilated Jews, secular Jews, intermarried Jews, Jewish apostates:
If you happen to be a journalist, then Philip Weiss of Mondoweiss wants you
to publicly "confess" to your Jewish religious identity - or lack thereof - because "it would be helpful to readers to know just how religious a person is in assessing his or her views on a fundamentally religious/political issue".

Torquemada, move over! Here comes Philip "Halorki-Hyeronimus" Weiss!

Sylvia said...

Forgot the link

Anonymous said...

I wanted to say all kinds of wannabe funny things about that outrageous piece but this commenter beat me to it:

But gee, Phil, instead of asking others to do the job, why not tell us how you fake Judaism when it’s to your advantage, like gassing on about “Jewish values” to bolster your anti-Zionism? And why the hell weren’t you Bar Mitvahed?

One of the many ironies I encounter out there is that it can really get them going when they realize that I am not Jewish and German to boot. Somehow that seems to be so much against the laws of nature that one has convinced himself I must have a Zionist husband, thereby outing himself as a mysoginist on top of everything else.

What a pity Mondoweiss wants more info than I am willing to give on an anti-site*) - but probably it isn't worth it, he's ban me in no time anyway.


*) I am not sure any longer that non-traceability on the net is all that secure.

Anonymous said...

I learned this expression this afternoon

... Avishai Margalit has termed “moral racism.”

I know nothing about Avishai Margalit but like the term while Ian Buruma, the columnist of the piece, makes me feel uneasy. I find his reasoning shallow and unconvincing. Somehow they all seem to be in denial of what I believe the military situation to be. Other than the UK is not an island in an age without aeroplanes but somehow they think it can nevertheless project as much power - idiotic me thinks.

Also I learned this afternoon that Luther was all for burning witches - somehow me thinks this is a very fitting companion to his ideas about Jews.


Sylvia said...

Thanks for the link. Great site.

Obviously I agree with Ian Buruma on his main arguments.
He says that holding Israel to higher standards has its roots in colonialism. This is in different words, what I wrote just a few days ago here on another thread, namely that this kind of double standard is plain racism, that Fanon himself, the anti-colonialist par excellence, condemned the French left for holding France to higher moral standards that they did the Algerian revolution, and he called it racism. Here you had whites holding their own country to very high moral standards while excusing everything "the other" did, no matter how monstruous, because it's his nature.

Buruma second argument as I understand it questions the Holocaust as founding event of the State of Israel. Well I said something similar myself more than once on this very board. To me, Israel wasn't founded because of, but DESPITE the Holocaust, the expulsions, the massacres. While never forgetting the horror, our historical ties to the land need to be emphasized. Thyere are actually people who have no idea that Zionism has always existed.

Where I don't agree with him, is when he says that the Holocaust has become "a staple of State propaganda." This was mostly the work of academics and other intellectuals, most of whom were children of survivors or whose families fled from Europe in the thirties.

Regarding the expression "moral racism" I haven't read the article, but it is evidently an oxymoron, derived from the fact that in Israel, the radical left constantly brandishes the banner of morality (musariut) on one hand, but is guilty of racism as just described above (and by Buruma) on the other.

Anonymous said...

just in
a "circumcised, yarmulke"wearing journalist had a look at "The Uncircumcised Israel Lobby"
with two Hagee quotes - the good one is this
"If a line has to be drawn, then draw it around both Christians and Jews, around Americans and Israelis,"
and this observation
On the other side, the leading force in Christian Zionism today, CUFI Founder and National Chairman the Rev. John Hagee, has denounced replacement theology and said in 2006 that he has "made it a practice for 25 years not to target Jews for conversion" at CUFI events. CUFI's loudest Christian critics are probably members of Jews for Jesus, who hate that rule.


Irvin A. Mermelstein said...


How can Hagee "denounce" replacement theology? Replacement (or supercessionist) theology is so baked into the cake of the New Testament that one of the most prominent of contemporary Christian theologians has said that Anti-Judaism is the "left hand of Christianity."

I am more careful, perhaps, than others about who I jump into bed with as allies of Israel.


Sylvia said...


Covenantal theology is interpreted differently by different Christian denominations. These interpretations range from bold and blatant replacement theology (even physical replacement) by some Anglican groups through Post-holocaust Catholic re-interpretations to the doctrines of predestination and dispensation and individual grace in their varied forms which run counter to replacement theology. Today the most vociferous "replacers" are the Arab Anglicans and the Sabeel organization led by Naim Ateek, and that fanatic anglican bishop Sizer.

In these days of Islamic expansionism however, Christians who have not solved that problem will soon be confronted with the Islamic brand of replacement theology. Islam claims to be the last and therefore the puirest form of monotheism and that it has come to replace and annul all other covenants, including Christianity.
Inother words, the chickens have come home to roost.

Anonymous said...


Covenantal theology is interpreted differently by different Christian denominations.

and I would boldly assume that in history it has been highly volatile
one doesn't have "to get into bed" with somebody to accept support
to accept support from somebody is not the equivalent of a catholic marriage vow
Churchill who during the war may even have made himself like Stalin had no problem to turn around when Stalin was no longer beneficial to his island.
Politics functions to a different set of rules from personal relations i.e. constancy and reliability are rewarded only as long as its conducive to whatever goals are dominant at a given time.
Sylvia again

Here somebody has fished out a quote from Paul Berman which illustrates a variation of "moral racism" i.e. one masquerading as admiration.*)


*) my 2 years as fisher"man" on a Greek island have taught me that all in all every difference "they" had was matched by a difference of "us". That said I always keep in mind that "they" were not eager to murder or conquer or subdue anybody. That's where I draw the line.
Yesterday was Gilad Shalit's birthday!

Sylvia said...

No, I wouldn't accept support from someone who believes I shouldn't exist. And I wouldn't "get in bed" with an Anglican replacement theology believer if he were the last person on earth. It makes a difference.

Regarding your last statement, I didn't understand what you mean. Who is "they"?

Anonymous said...

if that's your take on who to ally with in case of emergency then it follows for me that the Allies should be dondemned for having gone "into bed" with Russia and Stalin (and at least Churchill had no illusions as to whom he was talking to). They should have never colluded with that mass murderer in order to spare some or a lot of their own young men from getting slaughtered.

As to the last in that context "they" were the Greeks living on "my" island.
As an example:
a matron I would sit with at night got disgusted to the point of actually vomiting by having seen skinny dippers on a beach from afar but discussed homosexual practices in graphic factual detail without ever breaking into the kind of giggle which would have been inevitable in even the most enlightened company in my part of the world.