H/T Margie

At this blog we spend quite a bit of time monitoring the comments below the line at ‘Comment is Free’ checking for antisemitism and the broader problem of biased moderation.  Specifically, we often observe pro-Israel comments deleted, or pro-Israel commenters banned and/or placed in pre-moderation, while Israel haters, or those engaging in Judeophobic commentary, seem far less likely to suffer such Guardian sanctions.  

A commenter who uses the moniker Berchmans is a great example of this latter dynamic.

He hasn’t been banned or, it seems, placed in pre-moderation despite comments which include:

  • Suggesting that Hollywood and the media have pandered to Israel in advancing their Zionist narrative
  • Arguing that the charge of “Holocaust denial” is merely a cynical means to tar any criticism of Israel with the false charge of antisemitism.
  • Opining that: “modern antisemitism is an IDF-related phenomena”
  • Frequently suggesting darkly that Zionists engage in an orchestrated assault on opinion at ‘Comment is Free’
  • Suggestions that Hamas’ charter is not antisemitic
  • Implications that Hamas is justified in hating Jews
  • Expressing general antipathy towards Jews

More recently, he offered a possible explanation for why Jews may be hated. (For a more prolific voice, published routinely at ‘Comment is Free’ above the line, justifying antisemitism, see our profile on Ben White.)

Commenting below an essay by Fiachra Gibbons: Toulouse shootings: race, religion and murder, March 19, Berchmans, responding to another commenter, wrote:

So, in a CiF commentary about the murder of four innocent Jews, which included three young children, outside a Jewish school in France, Berchmans offers advice on the Jewish moral deficits which may help us “understand” antisemitism, and includes a “cheeky” reply to the specter of Israel’s demise.

Not banned. Evidently not in pre-moderation.

Here are a couple ‘Comment is Free’ emails if you want to register your complaint – in the context of their “community standards” – about the seeming impunity enjoyed by this commenter who routinely expresses palpable antipathy towards Jews.  (Here’s a link to Berchmans’ CiF User Profile.)

comment@guardian.co.uk

community.suggestions@guardian.co.uk