Guardian

Double Whammy


As if it was not enough that the pages of ‘Comment is Free’ featured last week an article by the noxious Antony Lerman essentially telling us that no Jews is no big deal, to drive the point home, the Guardian editors unleashed Dimi Reider from its arsenal of ‘useful idiots’ with an article entitled Mixed Messages on Jewish Marriage.

The pretext this time was an advertisement by the Jewish Agency that sought to stem the tide of Jewish assimilation. According to Reider, “[i]nstead of reaching out in dialogue, the ad attacks millions of people who decided to share their lives with a Jew.”

I saw the ad and frankly don’t see what all the fuss is about – its a well known fact that assimilation rates in the US (the largest diaspora community) stand at approximately 50% and its effects on Jewish continuity are devastating. 

As Yaacov Lozowick aptly pointed out 

“if you understand Hebrew you may agree that it doesn’t say much of what its detractors say it says. But that, of course, is standard: most reportage about Israel is non-factual, so why should this be any different?”

Anyway, the crux of the Dhimmi piece ends on this note which forms the thrust of his meandering article:

“It’s time for young Jews living abroad to proudly state that whether they are supportive or critical of Israel, they don’t have to be Israeli to be Jewish, and they don’t need Israel to tell them how to be Jewish. Moreover, it needs to be said – loud and clear – that while there is nothing wrong with seeking a partner who shares your heritage or faith, there is absolutely nothing wrong, and certainly nothing self-destructive, in marrying someone outside your community.”

Lets ponder on that for a moment. In essence what Reider is really saying is that Zionism should not form part of the Jewish identity, and if that was not destructive enough to the Jewish people, Jews should not shy away from assimilating into non-existence.

What is striking here is that most articles on CiF pick up one of those two themes but here, not missing a beat, we have both rolled into one: not only should the Jewish state disappear into non-existence but so should the Jewish people.

So what kind of reactions do you think there were in the comment thread to the Jewish Agency’s attempts to prevent assimilation?

Well there’s this from AzuraTheBlueDevil:

16 Sep 09, 4:53pm

It’s racism, pure and simple.

And then there is this from MilesSmiles:

16 Sep 09, 5:50pm

 I would be happy for my son or daughter to marry a person of Jewish background, provided they were not expected to convert, but I’m told that many Jewish parents think this would be a disaster and even, in extreme cases, disown their children

That’s the dirty little secret. There’s a lot of racism there and it is never confronted.

LibertarianSW joins the fray with this gem:

16 Sep 09, 8:00pm

 The Torah is clear: No marriage with Gentiles ……

And there’s this from RfSS (which is the only one deleted out of the collection above) (hat tip AKUS for posting on CiF Watch)

17 Sep 09, 2:06am

I’m getting sooo fed up with this whole jew-thing, day in, day out, always these jews.

Well RfSS may actually have a point. But who have we to blame? Ah well you need not look any further than the Dhimmi thread where you have, yes you guessed it, our flavor of the month good old Brian Whitaker trying desperately to prove that the Guardian is not obsessive about the Jooos by citing the following stats:

16 Sep 09, 6:02pm  Cif Middle East article count:

Iraq 1,708
Israel 1,496
Iran 865
Afghanistan 654
Lebanon 285
Syria 236
Egypt 166
Saudi 93
Libya 57

There’s a Gaza section with 348 articles but as far as I can see most of them are tagged “Israel” too.

This is an absolutely staggering statistic – approximately one quarter of articles on the Middle East are about Israel according to Whitaker’s own self-admission. Yet Israel has a population that consitutes approximately 2% of the entire Middle East  and is but one of 16 countries in that region, and this does not even factor in countries in the “Greater Middle East” such as Libya which Whitaker includes in his stats above.

Of course, as SergioBramsole notes “[t]his does not tell the whole story… Israel-related pieces on CiF get on average 200-300 “comments”, and 9 in 10 or thereabout have “negative” connotations.”

Well negative connotations is putting it rather mildly but I’m sure that if SergioBramsole had used stronger language, it would have certainly earned him a deletion.

Categories: Guardian

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65 replies »

  1. Hawkeye

    There was no intention to hide my identity – just used different email with associated name. I was instantly recognised any way ! Why are you not posting under your CiF name ?

    Hawkeye – I am no enemy of Israel or of Jewish people. I genuinely believe that you are trawling here in dangerous waters. You are also hurting people simply because they do not share your views.

    Dan Rickman I know as a thoroughly decent man who bears no ill will towards Israel or other Jewish people. Dan presents a very humane view of Judaism and is rightly proud of its heritage. it is obvious we are not going to agree. Perhaps you should look up the law on libel and defamation.

    Leni

  2. Dan Rickman can call Melanie Phillips “Mad Mel”. Hope you will advise him that this is libellous. Thought not. Rickman is a hypocrite.

  3. Irish – Dan Rickman is well known within his community and these unfounded accusations could damage his reputation.

    Do you have any substantiation for that remark?

    I don’t actually know BUT, I would imagine that Dan Rickman can hold those views and still be accepted in the ‘orthodox community’. However, when he chose CI(F) to express those opinions, he crossed a line and I would very much doubt that your ‘well known within his community’ implies any valuing of his opinions.

    In other words he can be well known but for ‘far out opinions’ of Israel more identifiable with the ‘Loony Left’ than with simply ‘Lefty’ Jews.

  4. Irish – Dan Rickman I know as a thoroughly decent man who bears no ill will towards Israel or other Jewish people. Dan presents a very humane view of Judaism and is rightly proud of its heritage. it is obvious we are not going to agree. Perhaps you should look up the law on libel and defamation.

    Believe me, Israel doesn’t need ‘friends’ like Dan Rickman. He made his choices when he started writing for CI(F) and must take the consequences. He has chosen his friends and must accept the derision that he so rightly deserves on this forum.

    All the stable of Georgina’s ‘House Jews’ claim that they are friends of Israel. Their world outlook is far far left from the accepted norm in Israel and they are only accepted by Muslims because they can be used. In a Muslim state, Dan and the other stable members would not be welcome except for their anti Israel stance.

  5. I’ve followed the comments on this thread with great interest.

    To those of you who sneer the words ‘left-wing’ at those who happen to hold views different from your own I ask two questions:

    1) Does democracy permit dissent?

    2) If you consider these views so outrageously left-wing how would you then define your own?

    Ultra nationalist?

    Be very careful how you answer.

  6. “To those of you who sneer the words ‘left-wing’ …”

    Who has done that in this thread?

    Maybe you are being a teeny bit paranoid?

  7. Leni

    “Why are you not posting under your CiF name ?”

    Duh. Because CiF would ban my moniker and I would like to preserve it. Did you not read our parody of the talk policy?

    “Dan Rickman I know as a thoroughly decent man who bears no ill will towards Israel or other Jewish people. Dan presents a very humane view of Judaism and is rightly proud of its heritage. it is obvious we are not going to agree. Perhaps you should look up the law on libel and defamation.”

    I am sure Rickman like many of the other house Jews believe that they bear no ill will towards Israel or other Jewish people and that they are doing the right thing. Leni, remember the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

    As for the law on defamation, we received extensive legal advice (for free!) to ensure that what we are saying is not defamatory. Did you take a look at the New York Times v Sullivan case?

  8. Tenny – To those of you who sneer the words ‘left-wing’ at those who happen to hold views different from your own I ask two questions:

    Assuming that you were including me, I see myself as LEFT. But far far from Loony Left. I’m not too happy about US hegemony but if the natural state of things is to have one super duper Super Power, I would far prefer that power to be the United States. Not Russia. Not China, Not Brazil and definitely not the Kaliphate.

    The USA will take mankind to the stars.

    Democracy is famous for allowing dissent. That is how it should be. That is one reason why political refugees make a beeline for the Western Liberal Democracies and not rich countries like Saudi Arabia.

  9. Irish – in a way I agree with your assessment of Rickman’s personal qualities. He’s actually a bit of a softy, IMO, and maybe the world needs more like him (and you). However, as you will recall, I’ve crossed swords with him numerous times on his Judaism threads, for two main reasons.

    First, he is not, IMO, as well informed or grounded in Judaic law as he thinks, and you may recall occasions where I showed this. But that’s OK – neither am I, though then I would prefer not to write articles that are actually incorrect or shallow assuming I had the timeor inclination to write on that vast topic.

    More problematic is the responses that his articles draw, ranging from plain ignorance to outright anti-Semitism. It is on Rickman’s threads you’ll find the two or three typical Talmudic citations lifted from neo-Nazi and pro-Palestinian blogs and endlessly repeated on the internet . Some are the one or two rather bits from the thousands of pages of Talmud and other Jewish writings, written one or two thousand years ago that real can offend modern (Western) sensibilities and presented as if representative of modern Jewry’s attitudes, and some simply outright fakes. Some of these citations date back to the Inquisition, if not before.

    You could claim that Rickman is not to blame for this – he merely writes the articles. But it is his articles on the CIF site, with the Guardian’s obvious bias against Israel and Jews, that creates the opportunity for those who will seize the opportunity to spread their hatred.

    To cite a well known Rabbinical saying: “pirtza korah l’ganav” – a gap in the fence beckons the thief. That does not absolve the thief, but the person who leaves his fence with a gap should be aware that there may be some who will take advantage of it. The “gap”is the role Rickman’s articles play about Judaism on CIF, which would not be the case if they appeared in, say, the Jewish Chronicle, addressed to a Jewish audience, where they belong.

  10. Fairplay -its getting close to Rosh Hashanah her in the Golah and I have to go- you may be right – but seriously – if you are right that pointing out that Arabs might have to learn to deal with reality rather than fantasy is a reason to delete a comment, they are really groping for excuses!!

    But perhaps the truth hurts – Arabs have long had the patent on fantasy rather than dealing with reality, and in some ways one could argue this is at the heart of the conflict and the reason they seem to belive that after every attempt to destroy israel they will be given the chance to go back to the starting line and try again – ably assisted by the Great powers supporting this idea in 1956, 1967, 1973.

  11. Irish – last comment for the day – I noticed that La Rit was outed on Harry’s Place, and somebody then picked that up and repeated it on CIF. As far as I can recall, ir was not one of the usual suspects, either. In any event, she is a very nasty piece of work.

  12. Irish: ‘ I genuinely believe that you are trawling here in dangerous waters. You are also hurting people simply because they do not share your views. ‘

    Quicki from me:

    Odd, I don’t seem able to recall you advising BNH, similarly, Leni ?!! A site which could surely have done with expert legal advise – No grey areas there, Leni – monikers not always being employed, eh…..
    AKUS think’s you’re a softy. I wonder about your selectivity.

    Notwithstanding, your post up-thread – your cleric was a harsh man to have refused you comfort at your time of sorrow. Truly, what can be said of such little people who wrap themselves in so called “righteous humanity” – a concealment for nothing but their own spite.
    I’m sorry for your loss and truly hope you had good people around you then.

    Shana Tova everyone.

  13. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m getting sick and tired of CifWatch giving LaRitournelle publicity and helping to foster the whole drama.

    La Ritournelle was NOT “outed” – she very effectively outed herself by advertising herself all over the internet. She’s somebody with a big mouth, and after putting herself all over the internet, she has some nerve blaming others for supposedly “outing” her.

    Don’t let’s forget that Jonathan Hoffman had his name plastered all over CiF by a particular group of people, outing him as the person behind a certain moniker. Jonathan didn’t threaten or accuse all and sundry, did he?

    Also SydK was identified via a letter he had written to the Guardian years ago.

    I don’t know if Dotty is an obsessive/googler par excellence, or does he have insider info?

    As Leni says “I’m not accusing the Guardian, but the possibility is certainly there.”