Guardian

The Guardian’s Mya Guarnieri plays Nazi card in phrophesizing the “the death of Israeli democracy”


The Guardian’s Mya Guarnieri has reached a new low.  In a recent piece for Al-Jazeera, titled, “The death of Israeli democracy“, Guarnieri outdid, by several degrees, her previous anti-Zionist opus in the Guardian in the levels of hyperbole and pure malice.

In her Dec. 8 piece in CiF, “Israel Rabbi’s racist decrees strikes at the soul of Judaism”, Guarnieri contextualized the bigoted remarks of a small number of rabbis as signifying Israel’s “rising tide of religious fascism,” by claiming that such views were state-sanctioned, which, as we noted in an official complaint to the Guardian’s Readers’ Editor, was categorically untrue.

But, undeterred, and clearly not one to let facts get in the way of preconceived prejudices about Israel, Guarnieri decides to double-down, and raises the moral stakes even higher by advancing an even more inflammatory narrative about Israel’s supposed descent into political darkness – in Al-Jazeera, a media organization, it should be noted, that’s not exactly known for sharing her secular liberal outlook.

Guarnieri’s case, in her Al Jazeera piece, against Israel –  helpfully illustrated with a photo of a sinister looking Orthodox Jew – is, of course, paper-thin, and includes, as exhibit A, a bill passed by the Knesset which merely denies government funding to groups who view the state’s very creation as a horrible tragedy.

But her polemical invective against the Jewish state then picks up steam when she – mirroring a narrative recently advanced by the Guardian’s Simon Tisdall who claimed that Israel merely “poses” as a democracy – informs us that its arguable that, “Israel was never a democracy in the true sense of the word.”

Guarnieri then quotes Knesset member Dov Khenin, of the Jewish-Arab party Hadash, who had just given a talk under the banner of “The Danger of Fascism”, about which she adds, “There [were] about 20 people present – a sad number considering what is at stake.”

Khenin – who later showed himself a fan of the father of Marxist thought, Fredrich Engels – said:

“Arab Knesset members have always been regarded with suspicion – the vicious verbal assault Haneen Zoabi faced in the Knesset after she participated in the flotilla comes to my mind”

Of course, the fact that Zoabi (an Arab member of Knesset) participated in a flotilla sponsored by known terrorists (IHH) who seek Israel’s destruction, and whose members, while on board the vessel, brutally attacked the citizens serving in her own country’s military, and then merely suffered a verbal assault, may at least partially explain why only 20 Israelis saw fit to turn out at Khenin’s event.

But, Guarnieri, undeterred by the fact that the overwhelming majority of actual Israelis don’t take the hysterical warnings about their country’s supposed descent into fascism seriously, pivots into even more odious territory, by asking, “Will Israel become out-right fascist?”, before adding:

At an October protest against legislation commonly referred to as the loyalty oath – a bill that would require non-Jews seeking Israeli citizenship to pledge allegiance to a “Jewish and democratic” state – Gavriel Solomon, a prominent academic and peace activist, likened Israel to Nazi Germany, circa 1935...That was the year that the Nuremberg Laws – racist legislation that led to the systematic and deadly persecution of Jews – were created….There were no [concentration] camps yet but there were racist laws,” he said. “And we are heading towards these kinds of laws.” [emphasis mine]

Guarnieri follows this insidious analogy by concluding:

“While meaningful change is probably a long way off for Israel – it may take something huge, like fascism, to wake Jewish Israelis from their apathy and dreams of maintaining both a Zionist and democratic state – change is in the air.”

For Guarnieri, it seems, the imminent regression into Nazi-style fascism would of course be tragic and abhorrent for Israel, but (on a more positive note) could also serve a quite progressive cause – the end of the Jewish state.

You have to burn the village in order to save it.

43 replies »

  1. She’s going to have to whore herself out to more and more Israeli and Jew hating Arabic outfits like Al Jazeera, to make a living.

  2. Only the gutter press with its hate speech writers could convolute the religious fascism of the Arab/Muslim world onto the multi-religion Israel.

  3. I sense that Guarnieri is a deeply disturbed woman.

    Tisdall has no such excuse, being merely an Islamist shill and a prize prat

  4. OT – Question for the Guardian experts:

    this is I think the second time a Guardian piece is offered at Longform.org.

    This time it is about Curveball – but I remember having read that story ages ago. Are they trying to make their mark in long journalism with rehashed stuff?

  5. Change is indeed in the air, except at such failed and morally bankrupt places such as Der Schwarze Guardian, which is still at the forefront of “progressive” antisemitic hate-machine.

  6. Adam:

    I don’t take anything Guarnieri writes seriously, but your denial of the current religious-fascist trends in Israel is just as ludicrous. You don’t have to read the Guardian to be aware of it – the stories are in the mainstream Israeli press and are reflected in every public opinion poll. You are correct when you say “the bigoted remarks of a small number of rabbis”, but every time one of these rabbis speaks out, the entire religious establishment, from mild to ultra orthodox, remains conspicuously silent (with the exception of a few mavericks such as Yoel Bin-Nun, who are then viciously attacked by the more extreme). It should be noted that all of these rabbis are government employees – have you asked yourself why the govt hasn’t made any moves to fire them and whether their continued employment can be construed as “state-sanctioned” ? I assume you are aware of today’s initiative by a coalition of MK’s to place rabbis above the law.

    After you sift through all the rhetoric you realize that there is one basic question that symbolizes this entire argument: is it ethical according to Judaism to murder Arab children ? Adam – your name reminds us that are all created in God’s image. The issue here is not the Guardian or Guarnieri. I am disappointed that you have not taken a clear stand on such a fundamental moral issue.

  7. MTC,

    There are enough assholes in the world who will jump on the wagon of delegitimizing Israel, even without idiotic rabbis and MKs.
    I agree with you that there are some disgusting trends in Israeli society, but still, compare it with the region…

    Oh, and a reminder:

    http://cifwatch.com/about/

  8. al gharqad:
    Israelis don’t live in “the region”, they live in Israel, and they cannot influence or change the situation in “the region” but they can in Israel. That is why I expect someone like Adam Levick to come out and make a clear stand on a clear moral issue rather than trivialising it in order to score debating points against the Guardian. When this Israeli religious-secular ant-democratic coalition starts clipping his civil rights and basic freedoms it will be of little consolation to him that it is worse somewhere else.
    http://www.ynet.co.il/articles/0,7340,L-4029839,00.html

  9. “but your denial of the current religious-fascist trends in Israel is just as ludicrous.”

    It is no different to the kind of anti-French feelings felt by the British during the Napoleonic wars or the anti-German feelings felt during World War I and World War II. Indeed, I would be amazed if there weren’t many Jews who didn’t hate Lithuanians and Poles, Arabs and journalists at Haaretz. It is hard to love those who have murdered large numbers of your brothers and sisters and would still engage in mass-murder given half a chance. It is hard to love a traitor.

    And if Israel is a Fascist nation, at least according to your definition, then so is much of the rest of the world and often for reasons far less understandable:

    Attitude Towards Jews in Seven European Countries

    http://www.adl.org/Public%20ADL%20Anti-Semitism%20Presentation%20February%202009%20_3_.pdf

    And what about the US in 1938?

    From a poll conducted in the US in April 1938

    Do you think the persecution of the Jews in Europe has been their own fault?

    10.9% Entirely
    54.0% Partly
    35.1% Not at all

    And what about the naked hatred for the Jewish state exhibited day in and day out at the Guardian newspaper, or the quite mad ethnocentrism of the Japanese and the Swiss, or the hatred of Serbs and Croats for each other, or even the hatred of the Scots for the English:

    I hate England
    AA Gill looks English, sounds English, but he disowns membership of a tribe he feels is made ugly by its simmering anger

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/article584314.ece

    ————-

    Like most right-thinking people, I was disgusted by Helen Thomas’ recent remarks. On the other hand, when it comes to people like you and the journalists of Haaretz, I think she may have had a point. If you hate the Jewish state so much then leave. Go back to where you or your families originally came from or try and find some other nation that will take you in.

  10. MTC,

    “Israelis don’t live in “the region”, they live in Israel,”

    Yes they do live in a region, a pretty shitty one at that. Do you expect the same tolerance and standards from those living here as those you expect from people living in countries where no-one shoots rockets on their kids???

    The mirracle is that with all the terror that this country experienced in all the years it exists, it is still a democracy, even if not a perfect one.

    And once again:

    http://cifwatch.com/about/

  11. “That is why I expect someone like Adam Levick to come out and make a clear stand on a clear moral issue rather than trivialising it in order to score debating points against the Guardian.”

    Adam Levick performs absolutely sterling work for the Jewish people in exposing the Guardian’s organised campaign of bigotry against the Jewish state. That you believe he is merely engaging in some kind of academic debate demonstrates once again your moral bankruptcy. You aren’t worth a decent person’s spit.

  12. Hoi Polloi:
    Fuck off, you moron ! Unfortunately now it is mostly idiots like you that comment on this site, which is probably the reason that decent people have abandoned it .

  13. Al-gharqad:
    Since Israel is a democracy, Israelis can shape the society they want. Agreeing to lowering the standards because neighbours have even lower standards is totally devoid of logic. Why not tell the poor in Israel that they should shut up because so many Egyptians live on $2 a day ? Why not allow illiteracy to rise to the levels of Sudan ? I am not talking about levels of “tolerance” within a democracy- I am talking about people who pervert Judaism to justify the murder of children and people who proudly declare that democracy is in opposition to the principles of Judaism.

    I want to emphasize that I make my comments on the basis of what these groups publicly preach and practise.

  14. Hoi Polloi:
    So what would you do about the traitors who work for Ha’aretz? Firing squad, hanging ? How about banning every political party that that doesn’t support your moronic, bigoted and racist views. After all, we cannot tolerate such traitors in the only democracy in the Middle East.

  15. MTC,

    You answered all my points from my previous post, except the following:

    “Israelis don’t live in “the region”, they live in Israel,”

    Yes they do live in a region, a pretty shitty one at that. Do you expect the same tolerance and standards from those living here as those you expect from people living in countries where no-one shoots rockets on their kids???

    The mirracle is that with all the terror that this country experienced in all the years it exists, it is still a democracy, even if not a perfect one.

    And once again:

    http://cifwatch.com/about/

  16. “Fuck off, you moron”

    I shall treasure your hatred.

    “which is probably the reason that decent people have abandoned it ”

    You know, you have much in common with Mordechai Chaim Rumkowski, but I expect that you’ve been told that on more than one occasion.

    “So what would you do about the traitors who work for Ha’aretz?”

    Given that the vast majority of Jewish Israelis already despise them and boycott their newspaper, really there is nothing left to be done.

    “How about banning every political party that that doesn’t support your moronic, bigoted and racist views.”

    You have learned much from Goebbels and the Guardian.

    By the way, this almost infinite capacity of yours to lie and distort truth, is it something idiosyncratic or is it a familial trait?

  17. Al-Gharqad:
    “You answered all my points from my previous post, except…”
    But you have answered none of mine. We are not discussing here what people think, but rather what govts do. For example , why do politicians want to put rabbis above the law ? What purpose will all this proposed legislation serve other than conveniently stifling the opposition ? Why is it assumed that an opposition weakens the country ? Why should we believe that if Israel drags itself down to the moral level of its neighbours it will not become the same social and economic failure as all of them ? Why will Jews in the Diaspora – the vast majority of which now live in democratic Western countries – choose to move to a repressive Jewish state or support it ?

  18. MTC,

    1. “But you have answered none of mine.”

    I think I have:

    You said:

    Israelis don’t live in “the region”, they live in Israel, and they cannot influence or change the situation in “the region” but they can in Israel.

    To which I said:

    “Yes they do live in a region, a pretty shitty one at that. Do you expect the same tolerance and standards from those living here as those you expect from people living in countries where no-one shoots rockets on their kids???”

    2. “We are not discussing here what people think, but rather what govts do.”

    No. We are discussing what you refuse to discuss:

    http://cifwatch.com/about/

    3. Still, if you insist:

    “There are enough assholes in the world who will jump on the wagon of delegitimizing Israel, even without idiotic rabbis and MKs.
    I agree with you that there are some disgusting trends in Israeli society, but still, compare it with the region… ”

    Why do you insist on jumping on the assholes’ and hamass-lickers wagon?

    Once again: Cifwatch is not dedicated to discuss the imperfections of Israeli democracy!

  19. “Once again: Cifwatch is not dedicated to discuss the imperfections of Israeli democracy!”

    True, but if you look again at my initial comment, my point was that Adam Levick was trivialising these imperfections in his attempt to rebut the Guarnieri article, a tactic that detracts from the sincerity and forcefulness of his arguments. Personally, I feel that recognizing and confronting these “disgusting trends in Israeli society” is more important arguing with the likes of Guarnieri, and that this trivialisation sends a message of tacit support.

  20. ” Personally, I feel that recognizing and confronting these “disgusting trends in Israeli society” is more important arguing with the likes of Guarnieri,”

    Cifwatch is meant to confront Guarnieri and other Hamass-lickers.

    Confronting disgusting trends in Israeli society is not mentioned in http://cifwatch.com/about/

    “this trivialisation sends a message of tacit support”

    It doesn’t.

  21. al-gharqad:
    “It doesn’t.” In my opinion it does, so allow me my opinion.
    But if you want to talk about CiF, a point often made about most articles is that the author is so detached from reality that any pertinent arguments are drowned in his sea of bias and irrelevance. This argument is not only valid for people who don’t like Israel and can apply to articles on Cifwatch. A lot of influential and serious Israelis (on both the left and right) are concerned about “disgusting trends in Israeli society” (to use your words), so – sorry – Levicks trivialisation of these trends will only diminish his credibility in the eyes of the informed reader.
    P.S. Dov Henin won over 30% of the vote for mayor in the last Tel-Aviv municipal election. He recently introduced a bill in the Knesset that would set up a system to collect unused and expired medicines so that they won’t pollute the environment if thrown out …..

  22. Kudos to you, Hoi Polloi, for giving this BlinderThanC**p concern troll what’s due to him. Israel has been living on the edge since Day One; the last thing we need is all those “voices of reason” telling us to be holier-than-thou in the face of existential threat.

    MTC just doesn’t understand the following about Jewish Law: It occupies the golden mean between Genghis-style barbarism and Gandhi-style walking like a sheep to slaughter. Says Jewish Law: To the merciful, show mercy; to the cruel (like those who put their own women and children in the line of fire as propaganda points which their collaborators like the Guardian lap up), show none, because that would be unmerciful to your own women and children. The rabbis speak to truth to power, unbowed to the irrational demands of Political Correctness, which is our age’s suicide pact.

  23. “A lot of influential and serious Israelis (on both the left and right) are concerned about “disgusting trends in Israeli society” (to use your words), so – sorry – Levicks trivialisation of these trends will only diminish his credibility in the eyes of the informed reader.”

    1. I wouldn’t call Gideon Levy and other nobodies “influential and serious Israelis”….

    2. I’m “extremely impressed” by people who worry about expired medicines when rockets are fired every other day on kindergartens around Sderot, etc. Maybe that idiot will wake up when a Scud fired by Hizbullah lands in his La La land…

    3. Once again, I don’t remember seeing ““disgusting trends in Israeli society” at http://cifwatch.com/about/

  24. Ziontruth:
    You aren’t saying anything new. The majority of Israelis already know that Orthodox Judaism is a bigoted and intolerant religion, one that considers the “other” to be inferior, whether it be secular, reform or Sephardic Jews as well as non-Jews. It is a religion that openly demeans women, academics, homosexuals or anyone that has a different opinion. It is a religion that openly encourages parasitism and shirking of all all civic duties. It is a religion that open declares that stealing from the non-Orthodox is not a crime. It is a religion that will devote unlimited resources to observing of the most trivial commandment to the letter, yet at the same time is able to twist and invert the meaning of the basic and important commandments like “Thou shall not kill”. So it is no wonder that the majority of Israelis openly mock and ridicule the primitive and backward rabbis who claim to be the moral leaders of Israel.

  25. Al-gharqad:

    How about Knesset speaker Ruby Rivlin:

    “Writing today in Yedioth Ahronoth, Nahum Barnea reports:

    “Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin loves the Land of Israel. He loves it in its entirety, with all its territories, with all of its population. He does not need to bring proof of his right wing record. On Wednesday, when the Knesset passed by a large majority another divisive, demagogic and ugly motion, he said to me that the Knesset he headed was dangerous. ‘The danger posed by those who are trying to enforce their opinion is greater than the danger posed by those who want to give up the Land of Israel,’ he said…” [translation by Israel News Today]”

  26. BlinderThanC**p,

    You don’t know jack what the majority of Israeli Jews think. You seem to think the Israeli Left’s still partying like it’s 1994 (the heady days of “peace” treaties… and bus bombings too, but let’s not spoil a narrative), when in fact, following the October 2000 Intifada, the barrage of Kassam rockets after the total evacuation of all Jewish presence in Gaza in August 2005, the Second Lebanon War (2006) and a host of other events, the Israeli Left is nothing but a shell of its former self, exercising disproportionate power over Israeli politics because of its grip on the mainstream media but not even remotely reflecting what the Jewish man in the Israeli street thinks.

    I’d write you off as just another clueless lefty, but with your comments about Orthodox Judaism you could fit right in with the Stormfront crowd. The irony.

    Jewish Law is sane. It doesn’t pass Political Correct and Multicultural muster, but then it shouldn’t: It’s the PC/MC suicide pact that needs to be closely scrutinized, to see if it passes the test of sanity. It doesn’t. It’s proved to be a failure in just about every state it has ever been tried in. The future is of nation-exclusive states; it’s either that or being overrun by the Muslim imperialist hordes, who are so adept on pitting the West’s freedoms against itself (q.v. Ground Zero Mosque).

  27. Ziontruth:
    “I’d write you off as just another clueless lefty, but with your comments about Orthodox Judaism you could fit right in with the Stormfront crowd.”
    Please tell me specifically which of my comments about Orthodox Judaism are not true.

  28. “Jewish Law is sane. It doesn’t pass Political Correct and Multicultural muster, but then it shouldn’t: ”
    Neither does Shariah law – is it sane ?

  29. Here’s a few points:

    Among the “other” that you say Orthodox Judaism considers inferior, you name Sephardic Jews. Can someone get any more clueless than thinking Orthodox Judaism is an Ashkenazi movement?! Orthodox Judaism is defined as holding the Torah to be of divine authorship and not human, and of the Oral Law as its authoritative commentary. Race figures here in no way whatsoever. This is a telling implication on your part.

    You say Orthodox Judaism “openly encourages parasitism and shirking of all all civic duties.” First of all, what you probably mean isn’t Orthodox Judaism as a whole but its Ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) branch. Secondly, your charges are becoming less and less true even for the Ultra-Orthodox: An increasing number of them take jobs, for example.

    You say Orthodox Judaism twists and inverts the meaning of “Thou shalt not kill.” By doing so, you have twisted the very translation of that commandment, which is really “Thou shalt not murder.” This changes everything: It means that those who think the commandment is some kind of paraphrase of the Christians’ “Turn the other cheek” have no leg to stand on. Murder as in malice aforethought is forbidden; of self-defense, the Sages (Chazal) say, “If someone rises up to kill you, rise up to kill him first.” Nothing but plain common sense.

    The majority of Israeli Jews can only mock and ridicule your understanding of their religion, which, even if they don’t observe it, they hold in regard as the nation’s lifeblood. Even an unbeliever like Biyalik called the yeshivahs “The production plant for the soul of the nation.” And he wasn’t referring to Reform temples.

    You ask: “Neither does Shariah law – is it sane?”

    Shariah law is imperialistic. Imperialism is the mirror-image of multiculturalism. Political sanity consists in having each nation safe in its own exclusive space. For a fuller treatment, see this comment I wrote on FrontPage Mag.

  30. MTC,

    A percentage of citizens in every liberal democratic nation in the world (including Israel) will make bigoted remarks, sometimes even clergy (and such comments should always be condemned), but I don’t know how an intellectually serious person can intuit from the fact that some Israeli Rabbis hold such views that the nation is moving towards fascism, yet alone employ Nazi analogies to suggest that the nation is but a few steps away from passing Nuremberg laws. I’m always willing to have a discussion about what should be done when rabbis, or anyone else in positions of authority, make racist remarks, but some rhetorical restraint is required for there to be a real conversation. The words “fascist” and “Nazi”, end the discussion for me.

  31. MTC says, “You aren’t saying anything new. The majority of Israelis already know that Orthodox Judaism is a bigoted and intolerant religion, one that considers the “other” to be inferior, whether it be secular, reform or Sephardic Jews as well as non-Jews.”

    Ironically, it was secular Zionism that started off hating orthodox Jews and Jews from the global south. Orthodox Jews could not have joined the agricultural settlements in the early days of the new Yishuv, nor could mideastern Jews join the Kibbutzim. They could only do menial work in the moshavim.

    I think you should sharpen your understanding of the secular racism of the Zionist movement, starting here
    http://www.tau.ac.il/tarbut/tezot/bloom/EtanBloom-PhD-ArthurRuppin.pdf

    What you can read on google books of chp. 4 of ‘Land, Labor’ by Gershon Shafir is also worthwhile, though used copies are cheap.

    You can’t slough off the unsavory aspects of Israel onto the orthodox. If anything, the secular Europeans are driving the bandwagon.

  32. “Even an unbeliever like Biyalik called the yeshivahs “The production plant for the soul of the nation.” And he wasn’t referring to Reform temples.”

    Bialik also said, “Hitlerism has perhaps saved German Jewry, which was being assimilated into annihilation. At the same time, it has made the
    world so conscious of the Jewish problem, that they can no longer ignore it” (Bialik 1934, 6).” (quot’d in p. 417 of the above)

    That’s for anyone who thinks Zionism is intrinsically opposed to antisemitism.

  33. “Please tell me specifically which of my comments about Orthodox Judaism are not true.”

    He even responds like a typical Stormfront poster. In fact, he puts me very much in mind of men like Israel Shahak and Gilad Atzmon.

    When I was a kid in Israel, on one trip I nearly choked to death in a cafe. The place was at the time bursting at the seams with secular Israelis who did precisely nothing for me. On another occasion, a secular Israeli, a first-aid attendant on a beach, poured scorn on my pain when I broke a toe. However, staying with friends in Sanhedria on the same trip, the uber-secular Hoi Polloi received nothing but warmth, kindness and love. Make of this what you will.

  34. “You can’t slough off the unsavory aspects of Israel onto the orthodox. If anything, the secular Europeans are driving the bandwagon.”

    “That’s for anyone who thinks Zionism is intrinsically opposed to antisemitism.”

    But for the Jew, the gentile world is nothing but one giant flaw. Why do you think Zionists tend to be so passionate? It is a simple matter of survival. You quote Bialik about “Hitlerism” but the truth is that the Nazis couldn’t have achieved what they did in terms of the Holocaust without the almost complete and willing collaboration of the peoples of occupied Europe and the so-called “neutrals”. Essential also was the, at very best, total insouciance of the Allies. Indeed, if Churchill and Roosevelt had been senior officials in the SS and the US and Britain had been fighting under the Swastika, the Allies couldn’t have done less for the drowning Jews of Europe. This was at a time when countless Zionists were organising resistance against the Nazis and their innumerable allies. Nor should we forget men like Jabotinsky who warned again and again of what would happen to the Jews of Europe.

    —————

    Memorandum of Conversation by Mr. Harry L. Hopkins, Special Assistant to President Roosevelt regarding a meeting with Anthony Eden March 27, 1943

    “Four months after the State Department confirmed the dimensions of the Holocaust, British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden met in Washington with President Roosevelt, Secretary of State Cordell Hull and Undersecretary of State Sumner Welles. At this meeting, Eden expressed his fear that Hitler might actually accept an offer from the Allies to move Jews out of areas under German control. No one present objected to Eden’s statement.”

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/holocaust/filmmore/reference/primary/index.html

  35. MTC has just insulted most of the Jewish population of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland. They are Orthodox.

  36. On that point of medicines: I had very minor surgery in the NHS and was given painkillers to take home. I didn’t need them and took them back unopened to the hospital. They said they would throw them out. That is English and Welsh law. What is wrong with it?

    (I do think it’s wasteful but I could have injected something into the blister packs, I suppose.)

  37. The “journalist” in question does of course know the same rabbi she is complaining about is being investigated by the police for making those exact same comments. Weird that when a racist rabbi is being investigated there is no screaming of the death of democracy or McCarthyism etc, just the mere fact he was allowed to express his racism means Israel is not a democracy. Whereas even sneezing in the direction of groups who fabricate anti-Israeli “news” is hysterically reported on.