Ron Rosenbaum, Writer

January 14, 2009

Further Help for Those Confused About the Difference Between European and Muslim Anti-Semitism

Filed under: Uncategorized — ronrosenbaumwriter @ 3:03 am

Judging from some commenters it is very important to them to make a distiinction between those in Europe who want to kill Jews because they’re Jews (often callled “Nazis”) and those in the Middle East who want to kill Jews because they’re Jews (often called “Hamas”, “Hezbollah” etc). The fact that both groups want to kill Jews is less important to them than making semantic distinctions that will allow them to avoid facing the ugly truth: they’re serving the propoganda bidding of groups with Nazi like ideology.

Here’s how the essay’s author, historian Daniel Schwammmenthal describes the complex relationship between Hamas and the Nazis with the Grand Mufti as pivot in The Wall Street Journal:

“The depth of anti-Semitic propaganda in Palestinian and other Muslim societies is one of the most underreported facts about the Middle East. It is this anti-Semitism that predisposes Muslims in Europe to attack Jews and fuels the Mideast conflict. The hatred predates Israel’s creation. To illustrate this point: The Palestinian leader during World War II, Hajj Amin al Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, conspired with Hitler to bring the Holocaust to Palestine. Luckily, the British stopped the German troops in Africa. The Mufti spent the war years in Berlin and was later indicted for war crimes but with the help of the Muslim Brotherhood escaped to Egypt. Hamas is the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood.

“Hamas and other Islamists continue what the Mufti had helped to start: a blend of European anti-Semitism and Islam-inspired Jew hatred. The rejection of Israel’s right to exist is what drives their attacks. The media, though, largely ignores Hamas’s ideology and its crimes of hiding its leaders and weapons among its own civilian population, and demonizes Israel’s attempt to protect its citizens.

“Hamas and other Islamists are not even trying to hide their ideology. Just read the Hamas charter or check out Hamas TV, including children’s programs, for a nauseating dose of murderous anti-Semitism. Last week, the French broadcasting authorities banned Hamas TV for inciting violence and hatred. Unfortunately, just like Hezbollah TV, which is also banned in Europe for its anti-Semitic and jihadi content, audiences here can still receive these programs due to Saudi Arabia’s Arabsat and Egyptian satellite provider Nilesat.

“The Islamist variation of Jew hatred is now being reimported to Europe.”

I hope this won’t be too confusing, but to the many who evidently seem to feel the nuances of the relationship between Hamas Jew-killers and Nazi Jew-killers is important, I hope it helps. The difference is not one of intention or quality of hatred, just quantity and time.



  1. Ron, I’m baffled by your one-sided view of the issue. You refuse to undertake a close reading of the situation. Most recently, I recommend Ilan Pappe’s excellent piece in the LRB ( I’m not saying Hamas and Hizbullah are not rabid anti-Semites, Iranian sponsored terrorists. Simply that I repeatedly get the sense from you, Goldberg and others, that these groups developed sui generis. Hamas/Hizbullah derive their support in large measure because they provide social services Israel doesn’t. While not stated, your hypothesis seems to be that the Israelis are so good and kind to the Palestinians. Why on earth would they want to hurt us? The Israelis have consistently made life unliveable for Palestinians in the occupied territories. How are they supposed to react?

    Comment by Chris H. — January 14, 2009 @ 9:43 am | Reply

  2. Barack Obama should journey, with heavy security, to the Grand Mosque in Mecca and before representatives of every Muslim entity in the world make the following speech: “I am the son of a Muslim who is now a Christian. Under sharia, I would be put to death as an apostate, yet I am now the leader of a country which has devoted two centuries to battling with its own history of racism and intolerance to live up the ideals of its founding. When will the governments of Islam begin to live up the ideals of freedom of thought, religious discourse and the search for peace? When will Islam acknowledge that people of other faiths or no faith at all must be seen as equals in Allah’s creations? Will Islam have the humility to acknowledge the suffering of the Jews, the indescribable brutality of the Holocaust and the desire of Jews everywhere for the recognition of their fellow humans, instead of centuries of irrational hatred and scapegoating from Christians and Muslims alike. Islam must throw off the shackles of inferiority and shame to realize a new golden age of learning and acceptance and I propose as a President of the United States nurtured in the bosom of Islam to help make it possible. Will you grasp my hand or cut it off? Will you discard the poisonous propaganda of Islamic exclusiveness, with which you have manipulated the minds of your people, for a new message of undertstanding which advances Islam as a pillar of wisdom and a refuge for tolerance? The call comes down from the ages through the prophets, the missionaries and the mystics. The response is yours, but only if you liberate your souls from prejudice and hate.”

    Comment by charlie finch — January 14, 2009 @ 12:12 pm | Reply

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