General Antisemitism

When anti-Semites at the Guardian fall out

A guest post by AKUS

One of the more ignorant claims advanced by the anti-Israeli crowd commenting at the Guardian, both above and below the line, is that the smaller number of Israeli casualties compared to Palestinian casualties represents Israeli belief that Palestinian lives are worth less – much less – than Arab lives.

The specious argument is used to complain that there is a lack of morality on the Israeli side, rather than admitting that Israel takes enormous care to protect its citizens of all religions and groups from terrorist and other armed attacks.

It is usually accompanied by two additional themes. One is the complaint that  “no-one ever mentions Palestinian casualties” when in fact there is no other group whose casualties are so carefully documented and republished over and over in media and by NGOs. The other is the accusation that despite the enormous increase in the Arab population since 1967, the lower number of Israeli casualties represents a policy of genocide directed at the Arabs on the West Bank and in Gaza.

To put it in a different context, would anyone argue that the lower losses of British lives in WW II compared to German lives (leaving aside the horrendous losses suffered by the Russians and the massacres of others across Europe and North Africa inflicted by the Germans) represented a loss of moral stature by the British? Should more British soldiers and civilians have died to even the balance and allowed us to feel that indeed the British respected human life as much as the Nazis?

We were treated to another of Steve Bell’s anti-Semitic cartoons this week, intended to illustrate this theme. The three murdered Israeli boys are shown, in the eyes of – well, who? The world? – to outweigh uncountable Palestinians killed in the conflict:


As bad as this cartoon is, for all the reasons above, especially appearing in the Guardian which makes it its mission to emphasize every Palestinian death, it led to a complaint by Martin Rowson.  Rowson suggested that Bell had, in effect, plagiarized his “trope” from this even worse cartoon:


As appalling as both cartoons are, there is a certain enjoyment to be had from seeing this falling out among two leading purveyors of antisemitic tropes.

What is horrifying, of course, is the support these two vicious characters get from their dedicated followers. This includes  the Guardian editorial staff, who allows them to post such agitprop, and their followers below the line – for example, here’s a comment below Steve Bell’s latest:

for example

And there we have it – the imbalance between Israeli deaths and Palestinian deaths is due to Israel’s presumably genocidal policies which are gradually wiping out the occupants of Gaza and the West Bank – even though their numbers, mysteriously, continue to grow at one of the highest rates in the world.

Or even the slightly more “sophisticated” argument that this represents a way for Israel to prevent reaching a peace agreement:


By continuing to publish these kinds of cartoons, and permitting these kinds of comment to stand, it is, in fact, the Guardian that does a monumental disservice to any idea of reaching a peace agreement, or, if they really want to, helping the Palestinians achieve their statehood.

But in the meantime, if nothing else, let’s hope the anti-Semites at the Guardian will continue to complain about each other.

73 replies »

  1. Also worth mentioning that a ratio of over 1,000:1 was set by the Arabs themselves in the Gilad Shalit fiasco.

  2. And that’s the truth of it. This has little or nothing to do with Israel and everything to do with the anti-Semitism they sucked in with their mothers’ milk. Well, thank G-d we have an Israel, a place where Jewish children are not compelled to share their fetid air.

  3. “Israel takes enormous care to protect its citizens of all religions and groups from terrorist and other armed attacks.”

    Perhaps you should tell that to the authors of the Or Commission report.

      • koufaxmitzvah really!
        “Or, perhaps, you should just pull your head out of your stinking ass.”

        Brian/sencar is British, unlike many on this site who claim to be, it should be;
        “Or, perhaps, you should just pull your head out of your stinking ARSE.”

        • This America’s day, Gerald. Or as we say, Gerry. Or just Ger. July 4th. 4th of July. Mom. Apple pies. And purple mountains. I don’t care if Wimbeldon and World Cup soccer is on the tube. We won the war, and, as such, all Sencars are Assholes!!!

          Whooo-hoooo!!! U-S-A! U-S-A!

              • Let’s see the Belgians play a little Baseball. Get a game of pepper going on out there. Show ’em the ol’ razzle dazzle. Give’em the ol’ razz ma-tazz.

                • You are right Jeff, we Europeans would not understand the concept of gambling and game-fixing that is such an important part of baseball.

                • Gerald,
                  You’re confusing baseball with another sport, perhaps the NFL. Baseball’s rules are very stringent about such things, at least since 1918. No other American sport fusses more about the so-called “integrity of the game” as much as Major League Baseball.

                • That was the 1919 World Series. Baseball has had very stringent rules in place since then. Pete Rose, one of the greatest hitters in MLB history, isn’t in the Hall of Fame because he had a gambling issue. The NBA is the most recent league with a gambling situation when a referee was caught being on the mob’s payroll.

                  Americans love to gamble, and the sports leagues love to make money, but the two don’t meet unless you’re in a casino.

              • Since when you use your hand to play “foot” ball?
                And why on earth do you need helmets and pads?
                Can’t you play like real men?
                Even Clint Eastwood figured that one out…

                • btw, for the record I thought the US current football team were awesome!
                  I was upset they lost to Belgium and actualy think they could have taken on the Argies in a better way.

            • Hmm, didn’t see England in the Round of 16. Probably because the players were busy reading the Guardian and the Independent.

          • Ahh yes.
            A criminal gang of terrorists led by George Washington rebelled against their lawful King.
            Such a pity we didn’t finish civilising you before we left.

            • “A criminal gang of terrorists led by George Washington rebelled against their lawful King.
              Such a pity we didn’t finish civilizing you before we left.”

              Yes, certainly. We threw off the idea of being subjects in favor of being citizens. How dreadfully uncivilized! 😀

              • “Yes, certainly. We threw off the idea of being subjects in favor of being citizens”
                Pity that being a citizen was not extended to include Black people until at least a century later.

                • A mere thirty-odd years after you ended slavery throughout your Empire. I do remember that the Empire had played at least some small part in transporting African slaves to the New World, but I’m sure it must have been an eencie weencie one.

                • “..but I’m sure it must have been an eencie weencie one”
                  Jwff you mean we were transporting pygmies as slaves?

                • ” you mean we were transporting pygmies as slaves?”

                  That reminds me of John Lennon talking about his dad, here:

    • Perhaps you should tell that to the family of Shelly Dadon who was murderd by an israeli arab or maybe the family of Bachor Jann who was killed after being hit by a stone thrown by arabs. YOu know those rocks that can never kill.

      • That was a response to Sencar
        “Israel takes enormous care to protect its citizens of all religions and groups from terrorist and other armed attacks.”

        Perhaps you should tell that to the authors of the Or Commission report.

  4. “But in the meantime, if nothing else, let’s hope the anti-Semites at the Guardian will continue to complain about each other.”

    Or, my preference, they can eat other. Less muss, no fuss.

  5. I use to think patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel, being on this blog I think meaningless abuse is the only option open to Zionist scoundrels. Pity, they think they make a cogent argument with their racist abuse.

    • “I use to think”
      When did this miraculous event last happen Tehran Jane?

      By the way it is impossible to have a ‘cogent argument’ with someone who runs away instead of answering questions.

      • When you ‘notice’ Jane, you give her oxygen. Which is a pity.

        She is a rabid Israel hater. Nothing you or I can ever say to her will change that.

        Being parachuted into Taliban controlled territory could change her but, I would not waste the time or investment on her.

        She could marry Berchmans though. Any slight ideological differences would probably end in extreme violence.

        • NobblyStick I understand the point you are making and I well remember the on going debate during the recent ‘Troubles’ in the North of Ireland about giving the oxygen of publicity to the ‘Provos’.
          However this is not the MSM but the unregulated internet and I do not believe the same considerations apply.
          Although I do admit that taking on Tehran Jane and the others of her ilk is the same as ‘shooting fish in a barrel’. They are not worthy opponents, but you can only take on what is put up against you even if it is sub-standard.

    • Jane Mardell: Jews who support their right to national self-determination = “Zionist scoundrels”. Zionist scoundrel is not a term of abuse for anti-Semitic scum I suppose Jane? It’s your reality; you get to write the rules and emasculate the Jews as you see fit, because you operate in a culture that normalises your particular kind of bigotry.

    • When Israeli and Jewish hater lie and demonize Israel and zioism they think they make a cogent argument with their racist abuse.

    • Jane:

      “…Zionist scoundrels..”

      Are there Zionists who are not scoundrels in your humble opinion, dear Jane?

  6. We had a graphic example yesterday of why the numbers of dead Israelis are so much lower than those of dead Palestinians. It is certainly not because the Palestinians don’t do their best to kill Israelis. It’s just that Israelis don’t want to be killed and are prepared to invest money time and energy in keeping their people safe.

    Early warning signals, secure rooms, air raid shelters and the Israeli invention of the Iron Dome that detonates the incoming missile in mid-air all do their part.

    Yesterday an explosive missile hit a nursery school but forewarned by the sirens the teacher hurried the children to safety in the secure room.

    Result: no change in the statistics, much to Gaza’s sorrow.

  7. This article provides no evidence that Rowson and Bell have fallen out. Rowson is not suggesting Bell plagiarized the trope but is pointing out that he considers the trope to still be apt five years later.

    • Hmm – so you are saying that anti-Semitic birds of a feather flock together? At the Guardian?

  8. I think this article should be nominated for strawman of the year award. While the claim was made I didn’t see any reference to any guardian posters claiming body counts showed that a genocide was in progress.

    Over the years I’ve often seen the lack of body count used as a defense against that charge.

    And the reality is the crime of genocide doesn’t require a body count. That is to suggest that Israel is guilty of that. Let me be clear on that. It’s not that clear.

    But AK certainly deserves an award for his strawman argument.

    • AK starts with the expression ” the anti-Israeli crowd ” as if there is a collective or a new political movement held together less by power of rhetoric and careful debate and more by hatred of a single country and by extension Jews.
      But there is such a collective berchmans. CIF – the promoter of mass murder of Jews – is an excellent example where your kind of Jew-hating bigots, ignorant haters, social misfit racists and neo-Nazis can vent their jealousy and frustration about the success of Israel.

      • The IDF should have made a well publicised effort to hunt for the killers. Use extremist insults if you will nothing changes the fact that it looked as though they were not being as robust as they were against the Palestinians.

        • berchmans you will be the last on the IDF Spokesperson Unit’s list of desired employees. They wouldn’t accept advisers with your antisemitic credentials.

        • Police don’t do “well publicized searches” in the hope of gathering evidence before it gets destroyed. By “publicizing searches” the police give away clues like location and secret evidence used to vet out the real killers.

          Tell us, Barfbag Poopface, should the police conclude it was a family squabble, what will your excuse be?

        • Robust?
          A couple of slaps, insults and several arrests.
          While on the Arab riots side millions of pounds of damage, and only few arrests made.

          The Arabs abuse the police only to cry for their help later.
          Reminds me of south London, Hackney and Harlesden sometimes.

    • Didn’t the kid just die yesterday?

      Let’s see… The day after our 3 boys were kidnapped, Hamas announced that kidnappings are good thing and Fatah posted a drawing of 3 rats in a trap on their Facebook page.

      Feel free to start fucking yourself slowly with a chainsaw, okay?

    • “careful debate”
      Yes, a very careful debate – one where certain facts are never discussed, and where others are invented. It’s as if there is a political movement held together by hatred of a single country. Sigh.

  9. One day civilised people will look back on these vile cartoons with the same disgust they regard the Nazi ones.

      • There comes a moment where someone’s misguidedness is actually a sign of them completely idiotic morons. If you haven’t figure it out, the Guardian really isn’t, how do I put this, credible.

        But for shits and grins, we’ll say they are. What you are indeed saying is that everybody in Israel is just like the people on the bus, but only the people on the bus getting mad at Arabs, not the people on the bus defending Arabs.

        I point this out because it’s important for you to understand your limitations when it comes to “discussing” this situation.

      • Ethan,
        Thank you for showing us how moral the IDF officers really are.
        They stood and defended (2 against many) the Arab who has been abused and assaulted.

        Remind me what did the PA officers do when the Palestinian mob killed the 2 IDF reservists who simply made a wrong turn in October 2000?

        And the Or commission found Israelis to be on the wrong side.
        A joke.

        Here we go again. another Intifada some more dozens of dead and the Guardian “heroes” laughing.

  10. At the end of the day, what on earth does such a cartoon actually +mean+?

    Ostensibly it +means+ Israeli Jewish lives are worth more than Palestinian Arab Muslim and Christian ones. But contextually, because we know Bell’s and Rowson’s politics, we know the meaning is sarcastic or ironic i.e. +means+ precisely the opposite.

    Of course Israeli Jews value their own more than the enemies’, just as Palestinian (and other) Arab Muslims and Christians value their own above Israeli Jews’. Just as The Guardian values the Palestinian Arab Muslim and Christian nationalist cause above the Israeli or Zionist Jewish one.

    It is such a +weak+ piece of political gesturing: to ‘get’ it you have to subscribe to a myth of Jewish power, whereby Israeli or Zionist Jews ‘fix’ the going rate as to the worth of life, ethnicity by ethnicity.

    • What it means, Zac, is that the cartoonists are opportunistic assholes who can’t formulate an opinion based on facts. So…. that makes them shitty in terms of journalism, and scummy in terms of humanity.

  11. As bad as this cartoon is, for all the reasons above …

    Hang on. Where did Bell claim/suggest that “there is a lack of morality on the Israeli side” or accuse the Israelis of “a policy of genocide”?

    And besides: where did Rowson complain about plagiarism?
    And his reference to Blair gives you a big clue about what both cartoonists’ point actually is.
    Both cartoons are unpleasant – but there is scant evidence on which to judge their creators to be anti-Setmitic.

    A very strange post, AKUS.

  12. Did anyone else notice the unbelievable arrogance of Paul Fisher who commented on the cartoon, by saying he is “nearly half way through” his life. He’s certain he will live a prescribed number of years? That he’ll never contract a fatal disease, or be killed by accident, war, natural disaster or terrorist or other murderer, etc etc?

    Where does he get his information about the length of his life? Can anyone get this, or is it just arrogant shits with antisemitic tendencies who enjoy such privileges.