02/06/2014 Jerusalem Post
Israel-bashing and boycotting has not yet been established as an acknowledged form of anti-Semitism. On May 13, 2014 the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) published results of its world-wide survey on the extent of global anti-Semitism. The survey found that in the majority of English-speaking countries, the percentage of those embracing anti-Semitic attitudes was 13 percent, far lower than the overall average, whereas, Western and Eastern Europe as a whole exhibited 24% and 34% respectively. At the same time, the survey exposed a ubiquitous spread of anti-Semitism in the Arab countries of the Middle East and North Africa where 90% of the population (93% in the West Bank and Gaza) harbors profound prejudicial frame of mind pertaining to Jews in general, not limited to Israel or Israelis in particular.
The survey comprised 11 questions. Respondents acted on these by either agreeing or disagreeing to the following list of statements alluding to typical, old-school anti-Semitic myths:
1 Jews are more loyal to Israel than to [this country/the countries they live in]
2 Jews have too much power in international financial markets
3 Jews have too much control over global affairs
4 Jews think they are better than other people
5 Jews have too much control over the global media
6 Jews are responsible for most of the world's wars
7 Jews have too much power in the business world
8 Jews don't care what happens to anyone but their own kind
9 People hate Jews because of the way Jews behave
10 Jews have too much control over the United States government
11 Jews still talk too much about what happened to them in the Holocaust
Responding affirmatively to six or more out of the 11 statements was “qualified” as an indication of anti-Semitic attitude. Responding affirmatively to 2-5 or 0-1 statements was interpreted as either impartial to or free of anti-Semitic mindset respectively.
Interestingly, the survey missed on one recent, however momentous, unconventional form of anti-Semitic attitude, one that is prevalent in Western Europe and in the English speaking countries where the survey found a relatively low percentage of what it defined as anti-Semites.
That specific form of anti-Semitism, the one exhibited by the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, cultural boycotts of Israeli artists, academic boycott of Israeli scientists is, just as well, founded on myths and untruths dispersed by Arab propaganda, while it spills over and taints Jews everywhere since they “represent” the “ugly Zionists”.
The first myth accusing Israel of apartheid and ethnic cleansing is so outrageous that it actually distorts the meaning of apartheid. Israeli Arabs enjoy more freedom of speech, of movement, of participation in the Israeli economy, of legal justice then any of their brethren in the surrounding vast ocean of Arab and Muslim countries. Arabs serve as doctors in Israeli hospitals, as managers in Israeli corporations, having Jewish employees report to them. One of Israel’s Supreme Court judges is a Palestinian Arab. Arabs who declare their hostility to the Jewish State serve as members of Parliament (MKs), spilling their venom from its pulpit fearlessly and in front of all other MKs and national TV. Could anyone find that level of liberty and economic freedom in the apartheid state of South Africa where blacks are a majority rather than a hostile minority? Of course, Israeli Arabs are treated with a certain level of suspicion, because, after all, many of them view the State of Israel as being occupied unjustly by Jews who do not belong there, and in 1947-48 these Arabs fought the Jews in the hope of throwing them into the sea. But labeling treatment of Israeli Arabs as apartheid amounts to either downplaying the true meaning of apartheid or a contemptible and deceptive way of describing the present conditions of Israeli Arabs.
Charges of ethnic cleansing including false reports of Israeli soldiers intentionally killing Arab children, outrageous stories about harvesting the organs of dead Arabs (the Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet in 2009), spreading rumors concerning Mossad-trained sharks attacking Egyptians in the Red Sea, and communicating exaggerated, false stories about the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, are all serving as “moral” justification for treating Israel as a pariah state. The latest Newsweek depiction of Israeli spying in the US and its traditional anti-Semitic claim about Jewish control and influence that impede and compress any counter-measures designed to eliminate and prosecute that behavior, is one more scam intended to conceal anti-Semitic tendencies under the guise of Israel-bashing.
It is evident that the BDS movement is about dismantling Israel, not the result of the 1967 Occupation. And denying the Jews’ right to self-determination is distinctly anti-Semitic.
Unfortunately, the Israel-bashing and boycotting aspect concerning 50% of the world Jewish population, which lives in Israel, was not present in the ADL survey. It has not been tested because it is relatively new and has not yet been established as an acknowledged form of anti-Semitism. In fact, being critical of the Jewish state in Israel is a legitimate act when it is justified. It is not anti-Semitic as long as this criticism is founded on facts, verifiable evidence, historical truths and legal grounds. But, when Israel-bashing is based upon falsehoods, distortion of facts, edited and staged video recordings, blood libels, or comparisons to the Nazi or to the apartheid regimes, then it is motivated by anti-Semitic intentions. There is no other way about it.
Unfortunately, the ADL survey failed to take this aspect into account in their questionnaire. Had they included this category in their survey, they might have found out that anti-Semitism in Western Europe and in the US was much more widespread than what was unearthed through the 11 questions the ADL drew upon.
Dr. Avi Perry, a talk show host at Paltalk News Network (PNN), is the author of "Fundamentals of Voice Quality Engineering in Wireless Networks," and more recently, "72 Virgins," a thriller about the covert war on Islamic terror. He was Vice President at NMS Communications, a Bell Laboratories - distinguished staff member and manager, as well as a delegate of the US and Lucent Technologies to the ITU—the UN International Standards body in Geneva, a professor at Northwestern University and an Intelligence expert for the Israeli Government. He may be reached through his web site www.aviperry.org