But, why, how dare you challenge Israel?

Zionist anger is a wonderful thing to watch.

After I recently wrote an article for Crikey that dared to suggest that Israel’s behaviour in Palestine was outrageous, Douglas Kirsner, chair of the Public Affairs Committee of the B’nai B’rith Anti-Defamation Commission, chimed in and defended his wonderful homeland and said it was wrong that anybody would criticise the Jewish state. After all, being a dedicated Zionist means never admitting anything in public. Israel is a noble state, remember?

Now, after last week’s piece in Crikey, that argued the Jewish candidates in the forthcoming federal election seem incapable of expressing independent thought on Israel, a response in Crikey from Dougy K has arrived:

Douglas Kirsner, chair of the Public Affairs Committee of the B’nai B’rith Anti-Defamation Commission, writes: Re. “Courting the Jewish vote” (25 October, item 19). I write in relation to Antony Loewenstein’s especially vitriolic attack on Jewish Labor candidates in Crikey. He made some quite baseless and outrageous accusations, alleging with no evidence at all, that Mark Dreyfus, George Newhouse and Michael Danby wanted to be in Canberra just to push Jerusalem buttons. I would have to wonder whether Loewenstein himself is more than Antony “one note” on focussing so much on the Zionist conspiracy as the root cause of so many problems. Danby, Dreyfus and Newhouse are all across a wide range of issues, only one of which is Israel. He also alleges that the ALP supports Israel only because they don’t want to offend the Jews– the Zionists, Loewenstein gratuitously alleges, “would eat him or her, with crackling, for dinner”. Isn’t it at least possible that the ALP have independent minds of their own and determine their own policies. Loewenstein should investigate why Doc Evatt and Bob Hawke were such supporters of Israel. Or for that matter Robert McLelland whom Loewenstein also sneers at. If you were running a serious correspondent explaining why Australia’s significant Jewish Community (about 120 000), they would be looking at why in two marginal seats Melbourne Ports (3.6%) and Wentworth (2%) there are apparently very different voting intentions. They would explain why the majority of Jews in Wentworth vote for Turnbull of the Liberal Party while the majority in Melbourne Ports vote for Danby of the ALP. Constituents appreciate a good local MP when they see one! I wrote a serious article in response to Loewenstein’s last effort. I think it is important for you to publish some kind of serious journalism on such issues, not just insults that impugn the integrity of these people and also of those many Jews and non-Jews inside and outside the Labor Party, who have a serious point of view different from a sneering ideological extremist like Lowenstein.

I’m an “extremist”. Yes, I thought so. Thanks for clarifying that. And, so it seems, according to Zionist logic, Jewish candidates that publicly display their love for Israel are simply expressing their deepest feelings. Perhaps. So why, pray tell, is even raising these issues in the public domain guaranteed to generate deluded vitriol by the likes of Kirsner? The answer is clear. The agenda is shifting, and anti-Zionist voices are starting to be heard. Zionists aren’t too fond of this, and will inevitably respond in their usual, bullying way. It no longer works, of course, but that won’t stop them doing it.

Kirsner are relics of a past Zionist age, where their voices were the only Jewish ones in the arena. But Zionist panic is setting in. In many ways, Kirsner is the perfect Zionist spokesman, utterly incapable of understanding nuance about the Jewish state and reliable enough to defend everything it ever does.

That’s not love; that’s incest. And many young Jews are turning away from Israel. Keep it coming.

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