On non-Israeli privilege

A University of Toronto student named Jennifer Peto recently achieved fame by submitting a thesis called:

“The victimhood of the powerful: White Jews, Zionism, and the Racism of Hegemonic Holocaust Education”

While only in academia could one maintain respectability after making the insidious argument that those who support Holocaust Education are guilty of racism, Peto’s broader narrative, that Jews have become a “privileged” class, (in some form or another) may be more widely accepted than you might originally think, needs to be taken seriously, and aggressively refuted. 

The idea that Jews, who (65 years after the Holocaust) now represent a meager 2/10 of 1% of the world’s population, and have but one state to call their own, are now seen as “the powerful” in the diaspora, and the proverbial “Goliath” as a nation-state, is a narrative which shows the profound moral pathos which informs much of the anti-Zionist discourse coming from the activist left.

In this distortion the mere fact that Jews are relatively successful and more capable of defending (or at least advocating for) their own interests, both in the diaspora and in Israel, is, in itself, evidence that they’ve lost the mantle of victim and now represent something closer to an oppressor.

Of course, far from being an oppressor, Israel (as this blog continuously documents) has become merely the Jew writ large. That is, the same historical D’s – double standards, demonization, and delegitimization – employed against Jews throughout centuries of anti-Semitic oppression have now, in large measure, been transferred to the Jewish state, as she represents in the minds of many the Jewish collective.

Far from being privileged, Israel is held to standards that no other nation is held to – the definition of bigotry in its broadly understood term – and asked to live up to ideals that no nation in the world could uphold.

Not only aren’t Israelis privileged but something approaching the opposite is closer to the truth.

Here are the advantages (privileges) of waking up in the morning as a citizen of a nation other than Israel – the daily effects of non-Israeli privilege:

1.  You can be sure that your country’s very right to exist won’t be questioned.

2.  You don’t have your national aspirations characterized as inherently racist.

3.  You can be sure that anger over your country’s actions won’t result in violent attacks against citizens (throughout the the world) who happen to share the majority ethnicity in your state.

4.  Your nation’s democratically elected leaders won’t face arrest warrants when entering other countries.

5.  Terrorist attacks against innocent civilians in your country won’t be described as mere “resistance”, or otherwise excused, by commentators in the mainstream media.

6.  The United Nations won’t pass an egregiously disproportionate ratio of resolutions against your country condemning you for human rights abuses while ignoring far worse abuses by nations in the rest of the world.

7. Your nation won’t be subject to international calls for boycotts, sanctions, and divestment.

8.  You can be sure that even when others criticize your country it won’t be compared to Nazi Germany.

9.  When enemies committed to your state’s destruction fire missiles into your civilian territory, you can be positive the international community won’t condemn your nation for retaliating.

10.  Your national passport won’t make you persona non grata in neighboring countries.

I’m sure I missed a few, so please feel free to comment on other ways non-Israelis are privileged.

21 replies »

  1. Well, Adam, you clearly learned something about the dynamics of privilege in the ADL training! BTW: there are elements on the “hard right” who make similar non-sensical claims. Perhaps we need better “direction” descriptors; the way delegates sat at the French National Assembly is so 18th century!

  2. Hey Jerry. I agree labels such as left and right are at the least “problematic”, and I try to use terms such as “hard left” or “Guardian left” to make the distinction between the left as such, and those who have distorted the values of an otherwise noble political tradition. However, we’ll have to agree to disagree on this one, as I feel strongly that, while there are of course those on the right who hate Israel and Jews, the majority of delegitimization and demonization these days come from the “hard” left. As always, nice to hear from you…appreciate your comments.

  3. One other privilige is the ability to be able to rent houses or flats in your local currency and some currency from across the Atlatic…


  4. This woman’s got a serious number of issues, she talks about herself in the thesis: “I was an outcast in the Jewish community, and estranged from my family for being atheist, queer, gender-queer, feminist and generally outspoken in a highly normative, Orthodox setting.”

    We’re talking a rebel (now) with a cause.

  5. As a citizen of another country other than Israel, you can be assured the majority ethnicity in your country won’t be criticized for building homes (or additions to those homes) in your nation’s capital.

  6. The uk has been hijacked just as Lebanon has been hijacked.

    The swine who proclaim they are all hezbullah, whilst in the uk, are driving the uk to destruction.

  7. To these people it’s not that a Jew has too “much”, it’s that anything a Jew has is too much.

    Many thesis(plural) are exercises in futility. My personal favorite (when I worked in an Agriculture Library at a Big Ten University) was a Study in aerosol ketchup(food technology)…..this womans thesis is about as worthwhile.

  8. A very strong article. But what are we talking about when we talk of ‘standards’? The Goldstone Report; named after an ‘anti’-Apartheid judge who sentenced black people to death by hanging? Or human rights organisations receiving Palestinian aid who pointed out which ‘cases’ the Goldstone Commission should ‘investigate’?

    Or maybe we’re talking about the ‘standards’ set by ex-president Carter in his book ‘Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid’ which everyone involved in the peace processes decried it, including Bill Clinton, who said it was unfair and inaccurate?

    When you have fabrications in order to prove a ‘thesis’ it’s not any standard, it’s naked propaganda. When directed at a ‘priveleged’ people – a certain race – it doesn’t require a genius to figure that it’s just plain racism.

    When you then have such conspiracy theories raised to the level of a religion where no amount of reason or evidence persuades the faithful, you have quite a recognised and established phenomena from history.

  9. Jenny Peto. It’s all about the movement and people she loves and give each other support. There’s no awareness of the fact that she is attempting to destroy a just humane society. She is queer in that she is odd and needy.

    She isn’t aware of the reality of Israel at all. She needs to meet Douglas Murray who said that “If queers for Palestine were in Palestine they would have to go to Israel.”

  10. I’ve always disliked the use of the term “queer” for homosexuals. In Peto’s case, it seems appropriate, without any regard to her sexual preferences.

    I had the strange feeling of watching a lesbian Goebbels watching her talk.

  11. Another addition to the list that dovetails with CornedBeefPiledHigh’s is that other countries will recognize the city that you choose as your capital, as such, and place their embassies there.

  12. I used to be recommended this blog by means of my cousin. I am not positive whether or not this submit is written by him as nobody else understand such specified about my trouble. You’re amazing! Thanks!

  13. I just got back from Israel…my cousins live there . I do not think any american or canadian jew can accurately comment on such matters until they lived there for a while.. I hung out with mitzrahi (jews from arab countries that were expelled in 1948 which make up 60% of populas) Ethiopian jews (not from sweden like Moses…lol) Lemba africans and Druize( moslems who fight for Israel). I thought how strange and twisted the world media is claiming Israel is racist? All of us including christians moslems black white arab all lived worked and prayed together protected by the IDF. Sadly we were not safe east Jerusalem PLO would beat up or even murder us in “their” village but they were allowed to walk around freely by us??? Why is it that Israel allows all other religions in Jerusalem even though it is against TORAH law? Yet we cannot safely visit Mecca or Medina let alone build a synagogue there… I have never realized how slanted world media is against us. Reform Judaism is ng. james ainoris