Guardian

Guardian evokes caricature of powerful Jewish state manipulating Western leaders


Last November we posted about a political cartoon at the Guardian by Steve Bell depicting British foreign minister William Hague and Tony Blair as puppets being controlled by Binyamin Netanyahu, in the context of expressions of support by these leaders during the war in Gaza.  Bell’s image evoked the canard of powerful Jews controlling western politicians for their own nefarious purposes and was hauntingly similar to more explicitly antisemitic cartoons routinely found in the Arab and Islamist world.  

Guardian: Nov. 15, 2012

The Guardian’s readers’ editor, Chris Elliott, addressed the row a couple of weeks later, and actually rebuked Bell for ‘unintentionally’ using the visual language of antisemitic stereotypes.

While such cartoons often have more of an immediate impact in reinforcing negative stereotypes about Jews than lengthy essays, the damage done by such toxic ideas regarding ‘Jewish control’, in any form, should be taken seriously.  The Guardian narrative of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, in news reports and commentaries, often includes passages with the unmistakable  suggestion that Israel (and the pro-Israeli lobby) wields enormous power over ineffectual Western leaders – a theme present in a report by Harriet Sherwood and Julian Borger titled ‘Iran nuclear programme deal in danger of unravelling’, Nov. 11.  The story centered on nuclear talks between Iran and the P5+1 (the permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany) which ultimately unraveled largely due to concerns that the agreement would have eased sanctions on Iran without requiring that it cease enriching uranium.  

The report by Sherwood and Borger included the following:

In a bid to contain the danger, the lead US negotiator, Wendy Sherman, flew straight from the talks in Geneva to Israel to reassure Binyamin Netanyahu’s government that the intended deal would not harm his country’s national interests.

The hastily arranged trip represented an acknowledgement of Netanyahu’s power to block a deal through his influence in the US Congress and in Europe. Egged on by the Israelis, the US Senate is poised to pass new sanctions that threaten to derail the talks before they get to their planned next round in 10 days’ time.

More immediately, Netanyahu demonstrated over the weekend that he could sway the Geneva talks from the inside through his relationship with Paris.

These passages of course strongly suggest that US congressional leaders take their marching orders from Jerusalem and that the French government’s position was not motivated by what it saw as its own national interests but, rather, as a result of the influence of the Israeli prime minister.  

However, the deal was fatally flawed, according to many experts, due in part because it would have fallen short of the requirements in six resolutions adopted by the UN Security Council over the years which called on Iran to suspend ALL uranium enrichment – resolutions passed under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, rendering them binding under international law.

As Adam Chandler observed in an essay published at Tablet about the superficial analysis by Sherwood and Borger: 

[Their argument] smacks of that paranoid, evergreen charge that all wars and international campaigns are waged on behalf of Israel, a claim that devolves from Israel into “the Jews” as it goes through portal after conspiratorial portal. 

You don’t even need to believe that antisemitism is at play to nonetheless be contemptuous of the extraordinary myopia displayed in the Guardian report.  As Walter Russell Mead observed recently about the broader intellectual dynamic which unites antisemitism with anti-Zionism:

Weak minds…are easily seduced by attractive but empty generalizations. The comment attributed to August Bebel that anti-Semitism is the socialism of fools can be extended to many other kinds of cheap and superficial errors that people make. The baffled, frustrated and the bewildered seek a grand, simplifying hypothesis that can bring some kind of ordered explanation to a confusing world.

Guardian “journalists” may fancy themselves sophisticated, erudite and worldly, but their frequent ‘Zionist root cause’ explanations betray both their ideological bias and the extraordinarily facile nature of their reasoning.

10 replies »

  1. “Netanyahu’s power to block a deal through his influence in the US Congress and in Europe.”
    What’s the source of all this great power I wonder? Will Harriet clue us in, or is it best left ill-defined and mysterious?

  2. She doesn’t need to explain, her readers at the Guardian know the answer very well from the Protocols.

  3. “However, the deal was fatally flawed, according to many experts, due in part because it would have fallen short of the requirements in six resolutions adopted by the UN Security Council”.

    That just confirms, of course, that the Jews control the UN as well and the US and France. Ask any enlightened Guardian reader, they’ll tell you that they’ve taken the Protocols from their Grandaddy’s bookshelf, and it makes perfect sense to them now.

  4. Similar to cartoons in Der Sturmer.

    Secret Codes Hidden War
    http://drybones.com/codes/

    —-

    The modern “Protocols of Zion” – How the mass media now promotes the same lies that caused the death of more than 5 million Jews in WWII – Part 1 – Introduction: The “Protocols of Zion” in the broadest historical perspective, by Francisco Gil-White

    “…Today the world is awash with the twin rumors that Israel supposedly controls the lone superpower’s hated foreign policy, and that ‘the Jews’ supposedly control the mainstream Western media. Few people seem to think that there is anything too alarming in such beliefs, despite their having the same basic structure as the Black Death accusation which led to anti-Jewish exterminations in the fourteenth century, and despite being practically identical to the Protocols of Zion accusations, which led to anti-Jewish exterminations in the twentieth century. The Jewish people certainly do not appear to think that they are on the eve of another catastrophe, just as they also didn’t want to believe the worst prior to the Nazi genocides in which 5 to 6 million European Jews were annihilated. But from the historical perspective the current climate should be alarming in the extreme. …”

    Anti-Semitism 2.0, by Mudar Zahran

    “The concept of the ‘evil Jew’ has made a well-disguised comeback: Criticizing Israel and Zionists, is now deemed a legitimate option to cursing Jews and Judaism. Not only is it open, socially acceptable and legal, but it can actually bring prosperity and popularity. This new form of anti-Semitism 2.0 is well-covered-up, harder to trace and poses a much deeper danger to the modern way of life of the civilized world than the earlier crude form of it, as it slowly and gradually works on delegitimizing Jews to the point where it eventually becomes acceptable to target Jews, first verbally, then physically — all done in a cosmopolitan style where the anti-Semites are well-groomed speakers and headline writers in jackets and ties; and not just Arab, but American and European, from ‘sanitized’ news coverage of the most bloodthirsty radicals, to charges against Israel in which facts are distorted, selectively omitted or simply untrue, as in former President Jimmy Carter’s book on Israel.

    Why would a Palestinian[1] be writing this? The answer is simple: The Palestinians have been used as fuel for the new form of anti-Semitism; this has hurt the Palestinians and exposed them to unprecedented and purposely media-ignored abuse by Arab governments, including some of those who claim love for the Palestinians, yet in fact only bear hatred to Jews. This has resulted in Palestinian cries for justice, equality, freedom and even basic human rights being ignored while the world getting consumed with delegitimizing Israel from either ignorance or malice.

    “Worse, just as the old form of anti-Semitism has proven itself a threat as poisonous to its supporters, as it was to the Jews, the new form of anti-Semitism 2.0 could prove itself the same — all the more likely as we see the world tolerating Iran’s nuclear ambitions not necessarily out of love for the Mullah’s regime, but instead because of mental fixation against Israel.

    “Such bias against Israel cannot be ‘accidental’ or merely ‘unfortunate.’ No other nation has received the amount of scrutinizing, criticism, coverage, demonization and delegitimization. In fact the question to be asked is not whether there is bias against Israel; but rather why there is bias against Israel…”

    —-

    Is the US an ally of Israel? – A chronological look at the evidence, by Francisco Gil-White
    http://www.hirhome.com/israel/hirally.htm

    The Secret War Against the Jews – How Western Espionage Betrayed the Jewish People, by John Loftus and Mark Aarons

    “The authors demonstrate that numerous Western countries, especially the United States and Great Britain, have conducted repeated and willful spying missions on Palestine[2] and later Israel over many decades. While on the surface these two countries and others profess to be ardent allies of Israel, they work, in fact, through their intelligence services to betray Israel’s secrets to the Arabs. …”

    —-

    Notes:

    1. “Palestinian”: ‘Palestinian’ Arab
    2. “Palestine”: The British Mandate of Palestine

  5. Loftus/Aarons did very valuable research, but sometimes were sloppy in dealing with sources and jumped to conclusions bordering on or transforming into conspiracy fantasies using associative speculations.