This is cross posted from the blog of the CST.
The myth of Jewish power dominates antisemitism.
The myth finds its strongest mainstream resonance in grotesquely overblown claims about Zionists, or Israel, controlling America.
For example, the Guardian Comment is Free website saw fit to run an article on 29 December 2010 that stated America has
slavish subservience to Israel
Indeed, the article was sub-headed (presumably by Comment is Free staff, taking this as the salient part of the article)
Nations covering 80-90% of the world’s population recognise Palestine as a state. The US, subservient to Israel, stands out
The purpose of American enslavement to Israel?
Israeli-American global domination.
The shape of things to come?
One might hope that the United States could still pull back from the abyss and recover its own independence, but all signs are pointing in the opposite direction. It is a sad ending for a once admirable country.
I emailed the Guardian Readers Editor on 30 December to ask how they could publish such garbage about Israel controlling America. My email said
Can you please explain to me how this notion that the USA is subservient / slavishly subservient to Israel is any different in its rationale to the old antisemitic myth about Jews running the world through domination of politicians, finance and media?
I do not mean this as a joke, although it does read like a sick joke when it appears upon the website of a publication such as yours.
I received an automated reply, saying that the Readers Editor would return to work on 4 January 2011. I have received no further response. Instead, the original article and its sub-header remain under the Guardian banner.
Antisemitism reveals the mythical Jew of the antisemitic imagination, not actual Jews. Yes, you can point at real Jews to try and defend your claims, but that doesn’t prove a conspiracy theory. For example, Jewish Communists didn’t make Communism a Jewish conspiracy any more than Jewish bankers made capitalism a Jewish conspiracy. Today, the USA is the country (barring Israel) with the highest numbers of politically and economically active Jews; and today, the USA is the primary target for the acceptable modern variations of the old, nasty, Jewish conspiracy theory.
Of course, only a conscious antisemite would actually blame “the Jews” for American policy; and only a non-savvy conspiracy theorist would publicly call it a “conspiracy”. Nevertheless, swap “Israel” for Jews; and replace the alarm-bell word “conspiracy” with something less explicit, such as “slavish subservience”, and you can get it published by the Guardian, with a sub-header endorsement to boot.
To be clear, there is nothing intrinsically antisemitic with arguing that Israel has undue influence over American foreign policy; nor with claiming that Israel has American supporters who work as a lobby and have success in their mission. “Slavish subservience”, however, goes way beyond such arguments. It is an accusation that is emotive, not analytical. When broken down into its actual meaning, it becomes a very serious charge indeed. For America to be slavishly subservient to Israel, there must be something way beyond mere lobbying and shared strategic vision between two independent nations.
If tiny Israel is the slave master, and seemingly mighty America is its slave, then Israeli power and Israeli modus operandi must indeed be of conspiratorial proportions and impact. The history of antisemitism is more than enough to demand a grave weight of proof if such charges are to be carried by a media outlet of the Guardian’s influence and self-image.
Below, for example, is the front cover of the July 1939 edition of Der Sturmer. The illustration shows the foot of a Jewish banker (identified by the Star of David that dangles from him) trampling a man into a bed of money. The illustration is titled “Land of the Free” and the caption translates as “Where one is ruled by the Jews, freedom is only an empty dream.”
This headline, taken from the Nov/Dec 1980 edition of National Front News, shows the gradual evolution of the Der Sturmer charge
The 11 October 2008 edition of the Saudi daily, Al-Watan, also knew that regardless of who won the US Presidential election (Obama or McCain), the real result would remain the same. “A sad ending for a once admirable country”?
This cartoon was published in the United Arab Emirates newspaper, Al-Bayan, on 29 December 2010; the same day as the Guardian article. It shows the “West” bathing a Jewish stereotype in Palestinian water. The Jewish stereotype represents Israel and the man pouring the water is, one presumes, slavishly subservient to the Jew / Israel.
If the Guardian would rather hear George Galloway on this general subject, here he is (taken from his own website, a 2005 interview in International Socialist Review. Note how he states that his readers will already know that the charge of Israeli power over America is not the case. Note also, that he blames Pat Buchanan and the like, for making such claims.)
But I always insist—and I insist on it to your audience, even though they almost certainly know it—that it’s not the case, as some like Pat Buchanan and others claim, that America works for Israel. It’s the other way around. Israel works for America. Israel works for imperialism. It’s not that there’s a Zionist lobby acting as the tail that wags the dog. The dog always wags the tail.
The Guardian is, however, a Wikileaks media outlet. Perhaps they are sitting on a Wikileaks trove of documents that show America’s “slavish subservience to Israel”.
Comment is Free has already reported upon one Wikileaks’ representative in Sweden, Israel Shamir, a man whom we would expect to trumpet any such evidence of conspiracy from the highest rooftops. So, if Wikileaks has any information relating to America being enslaved to Jews, Zionists, Israel or little green Martians, then we would expect the Guardian to have it before long.
If not, however, the Guardian – ie the newspaper, the website and their staffs – should send “slavish subservience to Israel” and other wide-eyed, hideously laden expressions to the outer limits of cyberspace where they belong.
(Such as here, the Palestine Chronicle, where the Guardian article originally appeared one week before Comment is Free ran it. Hat-tip, CiFWatch, who also note that John Whitbeck, author of this “slavish subservience to Israel” charge believes “100%” that 9/11 was “an inside job”.)