This is a guest post by Israelinurse
Did the champagne corks pop at The Guardian over the weekend with the announcement that Amira Hass had won a lifetime acheivement award from the International Women’s Media Foundation?
Judging by the gushing editorial over the weekend, one could certainly think so.
Amira Hass is of course a perfect example of The Guardian’s ideal pin-up girl. She is an Israeli-born woman who not only adopts the ‘asaJew’ stance in virulently attacking Israel, but also employs the memory of her Holocaust survivor parents as a means of supposedly adding moral weight to her arguments.
Indeed Hass seems to embody all that The Guardian holds dear, but even excessive admiration for all that she symbolises does not explain the mindset of the Guardian editor who wrote the following words:
“Only a Jew can invert the “never again” logic of the Holocaust that is used to justify Israel’s least justifiable actions.”
The ambiguity of this sentence leaves us no choice but to try to interpret the writer’s words. Does the writer wish to tell us that one has to be Jewish in order to turn upside down and demolish some perceived cynical use of the memory of the Holocaust on Israel’s part in order to justfy its actions?
If so, this would not only imply that Israel knowingly and deliberately abuses the memory of the Holocaust, it would also seem to suggest that any Jew not speaking out against Israel is morally compromised. Strangely, it also appears to exclude non-Jews from the equasion altogether.
Alternatively, does the writer wish to suggest that there exists some sort of moral perversion both exclusive to and universal to all Jews – not only Israelis –which compels them to distort the “never again” lesson of the Holocaust and thereby transforms them from abused into abusers?
Whichever way one choses to interpret these words, it is clear that antisemitic stereotypes are at play, in addition to the now tediously familiar tactic of linking Israel’s actions to those of Nazi Germany.
The invocation of the Holocaust as a means of criticising Israel’s actions is never done naively. The implied moral comparison of Israel to a racist, genocidal, totalitarian regime which aspired to eliminate entire groups of people from the face of the earth is not only repugnant and factually redundant, but clearly antisemitic as defined by the EUMC Working Definition of Antisemitism.
This is not some editorial from a fringe publication on the extreme Left or Right of the political spectrum. This is the ‘We Believe’ of a supposedly mainstream newspaper being set out for all the world to see, and it contains very worrying bigotry and antisemitism.
British society currently has its anntenae on high alert on the subject of the BNP’s despicable racism, but are Britain’s leaders and influencers of opinions capable of identifying racism from less obvious sources too?