Sunday, July 30, 2006

Uk Jew Tony Klug says Jews should distance them selves from Israel if we want to be safe!

Who is Tony Klug...see below.

Anti-Semitism wrong label for this sentiment
Author: Tony Klug is co-founder of the Jewish Forum for Justice and Human Rights, UK.Date: 29/07/2006Words: 1234Source: AFR

Publication: The Financial Review
Section: NewsPage: 62

Recent actions by the Israeli military in Gaza and Lebanon, and the responses to them, have prompted renewed fears of anti-Semitism. Yet some voices are quick to deny any link between Israeli policies and anti-Jewish feelings. Rather, current enmity towards Jews and Israel, notably from within the Arab and Muslim worlds, is explained as a phase in Jew hatred stretching back centuries.
Melanie Phillips promotes such a theme in her book Londonistan, where she writes: "The fight against Israel is not fundamentally about land. It is about hatred of the Jews", who she says are viewed by Islam as "a cosmic evil".
From this it follows that the way Israel conducts itself is at most a minor factor in the hostility directed towards it.
This is certainly a convenient argument for those who have an interest in making it. But the evidence points in the opposite direction, as exemplified by the Israeli-Palestinian accords of the "Oslo years" in the mid-1990s, which sent Israel's stock to unprecedented heights, both in the Arab world and globally.
In the same period, according to leading Jewish research institutions, "a general lessening of anti-Semitic pressure was recorded".
As for the claim of historical "Jew hatred" in the Islamic world, its validity has been repudiated by no less an authority than veteran historian Bernard Lewis. In a presentation in 1985, he distinguished three kinds of hostility to Jews: "Opposition to Zionism; 'normal' prejudice (what has been described as 'the normal rough and tumble between peoples'); and that peculiar hatred of Jews which has its origins in the role assigned to Jews in certain Christian beliefs."
Lewis identified three factors that gave rise to a more recent "European-style anti-Semitism in the Islamic world": the rise of the European empires, the collapse of the old political structures, and Jewish resettlement in Palestine along with the creation of Israel and subsequent Israeli-Arab wars.
While arguing anti-Semitism played a part from the start of the mandate period, Lewis claims "the real change began after the Sinai War of 1956 and was accelerated after the Six-Day War of 1967".
What distinguished the 1967 war from previous battles was that it concluded with Israeli military rule over occupied territories that contained more than 1 million Palestinian Arabs, a number that has more than tripled since then.
The importance of the distinction between the centuries-old European Christian prejudice, with its demonic conception of the Jew, and the more recent antipathy sparked by bitter, contemporary political conflict is compelling.
Using the word "anti-Semitism" to cover antagonism to almost anything Jewish - including Israeli policies, Zionism as an ideology or even the existence of Israel - and rationalising this modern tendency by slapping on the prefix "new" risks debasing the coinage.
On the other hand, in certain circumstances the different anti-Jewish phenomena may blend into and nourish each other.
Consider the following hypothetical case. In the context of a fierce, longstanding dispute, Armenia occupies a chunk of neighbouring Turkish territory, builds Armenian-only settlements and highways, allows militant settlers to intimidate local inhabitants, imposes curfews and closures, erects myriad checkpoints, demolishes Turkish homes, imprisons a large segment of Turkish youth and periodically bombards Turkish-inhabited towns.
Instead of dissociating themselves from such conduct, imagine that organised diaspora Armenian communities around the world - haunted by memories of massacres of their kinfolk - elect to defend and justify it in a show of solidarity while displaying no tolerance for the dissenters, "self-hating Armenians", in their ranks.
In these circumstances, would it be surprising if a certain anti-Armenian sentiment developed in a spread of countries, not only among those who felt an affinity with people of Turkish or Muslim origin but also among those committed to human rights and international law? Yet Armenian communities, feeling besieged and misunderstood, might put the animosity down to a historical Muslim antipathy towards Christians and a latent anti-Armenianism on the part of not just the Turkish people but much of the rest of the world too.
For their part, the Turks and their supporters might investigate their own or Armenian scriptures to see if they could uncover historical explanations for what might seem to them the cruel and treacherous nature of their oppressors. In this hypothetical case, the search would possibly lead nowhere.
However, an equivalent investigation targeted at Jews in the case of the very non-hypothetical Arab-Israeli conflict would be certain to produce the sought-after results, if only because of the ancestral battles that took place between the Jewish tribes of Medina and the contemporaneous followers of the Muslim prophet Muhammad.
In general, however, Muslim scriptures are not bountiful source material for Jewish perfidy. It's not just that the messages they give out are not consistent but also that Jews are not an especial preoccupation of Muslim literature.
And this is where bona fide anti-Semitic ideas eagerly step in. Imported into the Muslim and Arab worlds where once it was alien, the anti-Semitic "explanation" is now increasingly embraced by disaffected people with minds primed to be receptive to a simple it's-all-the-Jews'-fault answer to many problems.
In short, what distinguishes the Jewish predicament from the hypothetical Armenian one is that in the Jewish case a potent, ready-made ideology is lurking in the wings. Thus what starts out as a political "anti-Jewish sentiment" may, in given circumstances, metamorphose into classical anti-Semitism.
While helping to explain the cause of the phenomenon, none of this justifies the rise of anti-Semitism in the Arab and Muslim worlds, or anywhere else. It poisons the conflict and is intensely inimical to a solution. As a strategy, it is counterproductive: indeed, it was the spread of anti-Semitism that played the decisive role in winning so many Jews to the Zionist cause in the first place.
As a tactic, it is highly divisive - confusing and alienating Jewish sympathisers of the Palestinian cause as well as many others who despise racism of all types. Moreover, stereotyping one party is liable to prompt equally pernicious and ignorant counterstereotyping.
The charge of anti-Semitism against Palestinians and others who champion their cause is often made too flippantly. It lumps together real anti-Semites with the real victims of oppressive Israeli policies. Equally, many Arabs, Muslims and their supporters too easily dismiss the accusation of anti-Semitism as just a device for defending shameful Israeli policies. While this is sometimes true, the accusation is sometimes true too - just consider the Hamas covenant.
Some leading Palestinian figures have not only acknowledged the infiltration of anti-Semitism into Arab society but have been outspoken in their rejection of it. But the longer the broader conflict continues, the greater likelihood that anti-Semitism per se will indeed take root throughout the region. In that event, it would not only outlive the putative end of the Arab-Israeli conflict but enormously complicate its resolution in the first place.
If only for their own protection, Jewish communities around the world have a strong interest in distancing themselves from Israel's repressive practices and annexationist tendencies. Beyond this, they are sometimes in a position to influence Israeli policies and to help bridge the gaps between the antagonistic parties. But to engage in such initiatives would entail jettisoning their more common instinct of unquestioningly following the Israeli government's cue, whatever it may be

Tony Klug left wing human rights advocate {for palestinians of course} Pin up boy of Australian Jewish Democratic Society and an example how Brittish Jews have lost the plot!!!
--- this article on AJDS website

'Why Oslo Died' (Jewish Chronicle, April 13, 2001)

Tony Klug considers the fatal flaws of a peace process that should have taken the Middle East into a new era of reality, reconciliation and prosperity


As the land so cherished by Jews and Arabs is drenched once more with their fresh blood, there is at least one point of near-universal agreement - it is all the fault of the other guys. Simplistic, self-serving narratives along these lines are again the rage on both sides - pandering to old prejudices and stereotypes, requiring almost no knowledge or understanding of the issues and obviating any need for self-criticism.As explanations of what went wrong, they are wonderfully satisfying and woefully inadequate. For a fuller understanding, we need to dig a little deeper.What was special about Oslo was not the voluminous amount of legal detail in the accords but the mere fact that, after generations of bitter struggle, both leaderships simultaneously ditched their zero-sum approaches to the conflict and embraced instead the essentially symbiotic nature of the Israeli-Palestinian relationship.No longer would each side measure its advances in terms of the setbacks of the other. Rather, to paraphrase the "Declaration of principles", there would be "peaceful co-existence, mutual dignity and security" based on a "historic reconciliation" and "a spirit of peace." The sub-text - unwritten but widely understood - was a Palestinian state alongside the state of Israel. Without the prospect of independence, and the end of the despised Israeli occupation, the accords would not have garnered the support of either the Palestinian leadership or the Palestinian street.A swiftly executed withdrawal from the West Bank and Gaza Strip, buoyed by optimistic opinion polls, would have been firmly in Israel's interests, too. Apart from freeing Israeli society, once and for all, from the burdensome occupation, thus averting the curse of the recurrent intifada, negotiations over the difficult final-basket issues would eventually have resumed on a less frenzied and more equitable state-to-state basis. In practice, however, the Oslo process reversed this order by making the termination of the Israeli occupation and the creation of a Palestinian state contingent on the prior resolution of all other outstanding matters - effectively blocking the realisation of a Palestinian state and condemning Israel, willy nilly, to continue the occupation. This was its first fatal flaw.The process prescribed a long, drawn-out programme of mini-withdrawals in exchange for Palestinian good behaviour. This was a huge gift to both sides' saboteurs who repeatedly used the time to practise their art. This was the second fatal flaw.The third fatal flaw was the whole notion of drip-feeding rewards to the Palestinians once they proved to the Israelis, at every stage, that they could be trusted. It would be difficult to conceive of a more patronising, humiliating and illusory approach.Patronising because it reflected an essentially colonial mentality - an unhealthy product of some 30 years of occupation - which assumed that the "natives" did not have the right to run their own lives on their own territory, but had to earn it on a daily basis. Humiliating because it entrenched accountability in just one direction and so acted as a constant reminder of the inherently unequal relationship between the two peoples. And illusory because it rested on the highly dubious assumption that it was possible to build mutual trust between an occupying force and an occupied people. Rather, suspicion, contempt, even hatred, were the predictable legacies. The fourth fatal flaw was the attempt to steamroller decisions on the complex andsensitive final-basket issues, including Jerusalem and the1948 refugees, almost before the debates had even been initiated. Ehud Barak's final offer to Yasir Arafat, much trumpeted within Israel as unprecedently far-reaching, came with the impossible condition that all other claims must forthwith and forever be withdrawn. Driven by the imminence of the US presidential election, this was a desperate throw by a well-intentioned but inexperienced politician who should have known, for example, that Arafat had no authority to relinquish, just like that, all claims on behalf of the 1948 refugees. It would have been a gross act of betrayal and, had he succumbed, he would simply have dealt himself out of the picture, or worse. The political options would have been quite different, though, had a Palestinian state already been in place to provide a practical alternative destination for the exercise of the Palestinian right of return.The clumsy attempt to foreclose this vital issue propelled it prematurely on to centre stage, obliging the Palestinian negotiators to promptly reaffirm this historic right. But it was not of their doing. In Israel, the sudden re-emergence of this issue was rashly interpreted, even by many followers of the peace camp, to mean that, all along, the Palestinians had intended the eradication of the Israeli state. All the old mutual animosities came flooding back but this time with a vengeance that only a deep sense of trust betrayed could trigger. The Oslo principles were a great leap forward, but the process was deeply flawed and contained the seeds of its own undoing. In time, the pendulum will surely swing again and the corrosive occupation will come to an end. Meanwhile, the soil will turn a deeper red and we will all go on blaming the other guys.


Tony Klug is an international relations specialist and co-chair of the Council for Jewish-Palestinian Dialogue
Dr Tony Klug,30
St Albans Road,
London NW5 1RD, UK.
Tel:+44-20-7267 6444Fax: +44-20-7485 0102.