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February 6, 2024

The Interplay of Genocide and Anti-Semitism - Aiming to foster awareness and understanding

Misinterpreting ‘from the river to the sea’ as a call for genocide is deceitful because it inaccurately attributes violent intent to a phrase that is often used by Palestinians to express freedom, democracy – their political aspirational call. According to the Washington Post¹ this phrase has been in use since the ‘60s and any depiction deviating from this portrayal is inherently deceptive.

Few genuinely believe from the river to the sea as a call for genocide, they just pretend to believe it to advance their own political agenda. It’s a disingenuous claim.

That’s right, kids: actual genocide is not genocide — the real genocide is saying words that make some people feel queasy. The claim that Israel is not an apartheid state is not a position anyone needs to take seriously. It’s astonishing how Israel apologists have managed to present it as debateable, despite mainstream institutions considering it as a settled matter.

Israel’s pulverizing of the Palestinians; demolishing homes, hospitals and other infrastructure into rubble and forcibly displacing them through relentless bombardment is a savage behaviour. It is disgusting that Israel is murdering children by the thousands with the weapon manufacturers and Joe Biden, equally complicit in this crime of the century.

Israel apologists say anyone who criticizes Israel does so because they’re an anti-Semite. When asked for evidence that the accused is an anti-Semite, they will point to their criticisms of Israel as their evidence. This is called circular reasoning, and it’s a logical fallacy. In simpler terms, it fails to provide genuine evidence.

Actual hatred of Jews absolutely does exist in western society, but it’s much more peripheral than racism toward immigrants and people of colour. You don’t typically see the average westerner espousing a hatred of Jewish people unless they dive down some pretty obscure and fringy rabbit holes that leave them babbling about the Protocols of the Elders of Zion and denying the Holocaust and such nonsense. Jewish people simply are not othered that much in western society compared to other minorities, so if an Israel apologist needs to shout down western criticism of Israeli atrocities as arising from a hatred of Jews are using flawed reasoning. Post-World War II we have seen the birth of the Antisemitism Industry – people who have made it their job to call out antisemitism, even where it might not exist.

Javed Akbar's opinion columns have appeared in the Toronto Star

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