A storm recently erupted at Leeds University when the Leeds Student, a student newspaper, published an interview with Sameh Habeeb, founder of the notoriously antisemitic Palestine Telegraph. When asked by Laura McKenzie, the interviewer, about whether the editors of CNN, BBC and Sky have a hidden agenda, Habeeb replied as follows:
“They are certainly pro-Israeli. I think you have to ask yourself who controls the media.”
The accusation that Jews control the media is pretty much standard fare for antisemitic discourse having its roots in the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.
However, when confronted with such a blatant example of antisemitsm, it should come as no surprise that a good portion of below the line commenters in the Guardian’s coverage of the incident were perplexed by the suggestion that Habeeb was being antisemitic (helped along by the fact that no mention at all was made of Habeeb’s connection to the Palestine Telegraph nor the latter’s virulent antisemitism):
And I wager that if you were to ask every single one of these posters whether they think themselves as anti-racists, every single one would say yes.
Well if you can’t spot racism how are you supposed to combat it? And if you look to justify racism, well what does that make you?