General Antisemitism

Guardian readers skew conversation about UK, U.S. & Iran in a decidedly Semitic direction

As David T of Harry’s Place observed about Guardian Associate Editor Seumas Milne.

Milne’s greatest contribution to the Guardian Comment Pages has been to turn it into a soapbox for the RESPECT and Stop the War Coalition (StWC) projects: a Red-Green-Brown alliance between Stalinists, Trotskyites, and Islamists associated with the Muslim Brotherhood. Milne evidently regarded his appointment to Comment Editor as an opportunity to promote the obnoxious politics of this alignment.

So, it didn’t come as a surprise to see Andrew Murray, of StWC, publish an essay at ‘Comment is Free’, “An attack on Iran must be stopped“, opposing a UK or U.S. attack on Iran to prevent the Islamist regime from attaining nuclear weapons.

What was a bit surprising however, was that Murray, whose essay warns of the threat posed by “Anglo-American aggression addicts” who are “gearing up for yet another crack at winning a senseless war in the Middle East,” didn’t once, in a nearly 700 word essay, mention the word “Israel”.  Rather, Murray argued against a war with Iran in the context of what he sees as the folly of the West’s broader war on terror, and U.S./UK military involvement in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Of course, the mere omission of the words “Jews”, “Israel”, “Zionism” or “Lobby” didn’t prevent ‘Comment is Free’ readers to not so gently move the narrative away from military decisions made by UK and U.S. political leaders, and pivot to a more desired target.

Powerful Jewish lobbies in U.S. and UK are pushing Obama to war against Iran (29 Recommends)

 Jewish lobby used the Holocaust as an excuse to give Israel the bomb, and developed anti-Islamic ideology to justify aggression against the Arab world. (11 Recommends)

Further, after reading many of the 286 comments in the thread, and noticing a characteristic fixation, I decided to have some fun with the web site Wordle.

The beauty of Wordle is that it allows you to quantify the degree to which comments beneath the line, in any given CiF essay, slant in one particular direction.

Wordle was fed every word from each of the reader comments posted after Murray’s piece and, excluding commonly used words like “the” (and the word “Iran”, because, well, that was  what the topic the essay was supposed to address!), churned out the following graphic of the most used words – represented in a size proportional to the frequency of their usage:


Note the enhanced size of Israel (a word used 220 times by CiF commenters), in contrast to words “U.S.” and “UK”.  

In fact the words “Jew” “Jews”, or “Jewish” were used more times (42) than the words “U.S.” or “United States” (33).

And, finally, and quite ironically given the following CiF commenter’s malign obsession with the Jewish state, note the moniker above the gigantic “S” in the over-sized word “Israel”. Yup, Berchmans!

7 replies »

  1. Actually, Israel has made national news the last two nights in the US “reportedly” planning to bomb the Iranian nuclear facilities this spring – so it is logical that people mentioned Israel on this thread.

    The US has been working (diplomatically) to discourage Israel from taking action against Iran.while sanctions are given a longer period of time to prevent Iran.from acquiring the bomb.

    I don’t believe that sanctions will prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, and the green revolution will not overthrow the Iranian leadership in time to work out a compromise for their nuclear program – so an attack by Israel is likely.

  2. Brilliant idea, Adam. The way the Guardian has created an obsessive coterie of readers for whom “Israel” is the answer to any issue they have with the world is quite impressive in its utter negativity.

  3. In today’s ME Live Update, which is purportedly about Syria and the massacres there, the first page of comments refers about 25% of the time to … Israel.

    Berchmans, by the way, is conspicuously absent from making any comment about his Islamic brothers massacring each other on those threads.

  4. “Powerful Jewish lobbies in U.S. and UK are pushing Obama to war against Iran”

    Interestng to note the differing reactions of the US left and right.

    On the left: How is such anti-Semitic drivel any different from the tripe published by Tom Friedbrain on the editorial page of the New York Times?

    On the right: Bolton condemned Panetta’s deliberate leak of Israeli military planning information publicly.