Providing a voice for: demonisation of Israel and ‘right wing’ Jews; defence of anti-Zionists; gaslighting of Jews who complain of antisemitism; and the legitimisation of even the most indefensible pro-Palestinian claims – all in a days work for Guardian editors.
A Feb. 14 article in the Independent on reactions to antisemitic tweets by Congresswoman Ilhan Omar devoted several paragraphs to a defence of Omar by the fringe Jewish group IfNotNow, whilst omitting any reference to the near universal criticism by large mainstream US Jewish groups.
Whilst it’s true that Ilhan Omar has been the target of ugly abuse by some due to her ethnic and/or religious background, such completely unjustifiable bigotry doesn’t seem intellectually dissimilar to the liberal racism which rejects universal moral standards by minimising, obfuscating or justifying antisemitism due merely to the gender, race or religion of the perpetrator.
Whilst Ilhan Omar’s story, as a Somali immigrant elected to Congress, is inspiring, the excusing, obfuscating or erasing of her use of antisemitic tropes, based on an illiberal reflex in which her immutable traits trump reasoned discussion and universal moral standards, represents the very worst of the modern left.
Helm concludes by expressing exasperation at the most “disturbing” part of all of this – how the “outside world has always been to buy into [Israeli] version of events”, showing that Helm inhabits a truly fantastical world – an alternative reality someplace far, far away where Israeli ‘hasbara’ has an iron grip on the world, and is therefore subjected to little if any real criticism by the media and international bodies.