Israel as an occupying nation has caused some angst for liberal Zionists in the Diaspora. Campaign strongly about colonisation? Or attack critics of Israel and avoid the elephant in the room? That’s the role of Monash University academic Philip Mendes.
In his latest rant for ABC, he barely mentions the occupation and focuses on anybody who dares challenge his self-appointed role as guardian of acceptable debate over Israel/Palestine in Australia. Israel is becoming more fascist by the day and Mendes gets excited about anti-Zionists like me.
The perversion and delusion of modern Zionism:
BDS proponents malevolently exploit the willingness of self-denying Jews to vilify their own people. The BDS campaign has tapped into the long history of radical Left anti-Semitism whereby a small number of unrepresentative token Jews (some would call them “Uncle Toms” but I prefer the term “self-denying” Jews since they deny any feeling of solidarity with other Jews who are oppressed or attacked) are opportunistically encouraged to exploit their own religious and cultural origins in order to vilify their own people.
The radical Left would never employ such techniques against other historically oppressed groups. Yet during the Marrickville BDS debate this offensive and ridiculous misrepresentation of Jewish views was prominent. For example, Lee Rhiannon claimed that “many Jewish communities support this work”. In fact, no Jewish communities support the BDS, and the only Jewish community group in Marrickville, the Inner West Jewish Community and Friends Peace Alliance which is left-oriented and strongly supportive of a two-state solution, devoted considerable time and resources to opposing the Marrickville BDS proposal.
The only prominent local Jewish supporter of the BDS is Antony Loewenstein, who uses the term “Zionist” as a form of abuse, and who has called for a public inquiry into the alleged power and influence of the Jewish lobby in Australia.
Finally, the debate exposed the increasing capture of academic and media journals and institutions by the powerful pro-Palestinian lobby. This lobby now controls the Middle East policy of journals such as Overland, Arena, New Matilda and Crikey.com, the academic centre known as the Sydney University Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, the NSW Greens, and a number of trade unions such as the NSW Teachers Federation which support the BDS. These organisations fanatically exclude alternative left-wing views defending Israel’s existence.