BDS graffiti sign
BDS graffiti signPhoto: Miriam Alster / Flash 90

Prior to 1948, anti-Semites stuck out a mile. Jews were the wrong religion or the wrong race, and if you regarded them in that light the game was up: you had animosity for Jews. With TS Elliot, the Nobel Prize poet, the game was up with his caustic comments. “Reasons of race and religion,” he wrote, “combine to make free-thinking Jews undesirable.”

Then Israel was born, and the antipathy shifted to what Philip Luther calls the “Israeli state’. If Amnesty’s concoctor of the ‘Apartheid report’ cannot give Israel a sinister name, who can? The report delivered the preordained ‘guilty as charged’. But the arguments, ‘in court’ and out, made Israel “guilty of not just committing a grievous crime but of being a grievous crime.” (Amnesty at Fathom)

It’s a remarkable idea. The verdict is not a conviction but a curse. Israel is guilty of existing. The Jew among nations has no right to live – an Adolf Hitler decree. We shall come back to the ‘right to live is not for Jews,’ which happens to be the bedrock of the oldest hatred in the book.

People who spend their waking hours prosecuting Israel get away with more than anti-Semitism. They get bankrolled for it. A chunk of Amnesty’s $440 million budget went on the Apartheid report subtitled, A “Cruel System of Domination and Crime Against Humanity.”

The same indictment had been reached by Human Rights Watch, its report titled, “A Threshold Crossed: Israeli Authorities and the Crimes of Apartheid and Persecution.” The Hitlers at heart take cover behind moral crusading as they parade folksy heroics before a world audience.

Such brazenness is companionable with doublespeak. Paul O’Brien, the American Director, asserts that Israel “shouldn’t exist as a Jewish state”, then boldly he defies us to believe him that, “Amnesty takes no political views on any question, including the right of the State of Israel to survive.”

The failure to call moral quacks to account has not been for want of trying. European leaders now joined by the Biden presidency, found it expedient to appoint Jewish tsars for taking the pulse of anti-Semitism in their countries. Protocols – the way anti-Semitism manifests itself – and identikits are adopted as if to the blare of trumpets and footlights emblazoning the first electric Cadillac.

Two protocols are relied upon. There’s the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) and the EU Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia (EUMC). But here’s a startling phenomenon. The champions of these initiatives are critics as well – they won’t let Israel alone for one minute. Even as a president condemns and fights anti-Semitism, he holds Israel to a unique standard – even to a suicidal one.

Problem is, critics of Israel are adroit at covering their tracks. They, lest we forget, are moral activists professedly outraged at how Israel conducts itself. How to catch them? They are not gutter anti-Semites who call for Jews to be killed, or update blood libels by accusing Israel of poisoning the water or spreading Covid plague, or killing children; and they don’t cast doubt on the Holocaust – they indeed revere martyred Jews. Critics of Israel are professional to their fingertips. Who can puncture their pretensions! No matter what you say it makes no difference anyway. Pompous and preening hate groups and activists bath daily in self deification.

So it is that all the red flags waved at ant-Semitic acts and utterances have no noticeable effect in a frenetic market place where critics jostle to criticise Israel; among them you’ll be hard put to indict one anti-Semite. A freak era in life on earth! Hardly anyone who hates the Jews!

Half the problem is the chief witnesses for the prosecution. Importantly the most damning for Israel are home grown Israelis. Both the Amnesty and HRW reports relied on Yesh Din and B’Tselem. Traitorous Jews can’t seem to loath their people enough. This is entirely in conformity with appalling Jewish annuls. “Your enemies, God warned, “will arise from within your own people.” (Leviticus: 27).

That’s a real bad problem. When Jews become enemies of Jews the harm they inflict is graver than that inflicted by outsiders. The worst decrees in the Middle Ages were instigated by apostates. The most fanatical oppressors of Soviet Jews, from which Leon Trotsky stands out, were Jews. Today the grave danger comes from Jewish ‘halo’ types, eating their lunch at the cost of Israel’s image.

The Marx brothers Groucho and Zeppo, conversant with absurdity, might have made acerbic comments on Jewish turncoats. In a courtroom scene in Duck Soup, Groucho addresses the jury. “Gentlemen, Chicolini here may talk like an idiot and look like an idiot, but don’t let that fool. He really is an idiot.”

People who fundamentally believe in their cause can rise to the occasion. Anti-Semite hunters have trouble penetrating a smokescreen dense with fake news, fake law and fake social justice and moral fervour. So credible, opaque and praiseworthy! Simpler to catch a porcupine than a Philip Luther convinced that in standing up to the ‘Israeli State’ he stands up to evil. Israel’s antagonists negate all virtues and trash all common sense.

“How jarring that people who believe so fervently in human rights don’t see something amiss,” wrote a commentator on the authors of the Amnesty report. “Let’s imagine a village with 193 families in it. Imagine that the local police assign a cop to follow only the car of one family; and constantly measure its speed; and the tax department goes over every receipt of the family, looking for irregularities; and a grand jury sits permanently to investigate possible crimes of this family; and the local paper assigns a reporter to permanently sniff out infidelities or disputes inside the family. You don’t need to be an expert in the field of human rights to understand what’s wrong with that situation.”

To bedevil the problem, critics will cite as proof of Apartheid Israel’s Knesset declaring that “Israel is the Nation-State of the Jewish People” despite an Arab population of twenty percent; or the unequal treatment of Palestinian Arabs in Israeli sovereign and occupied territories; or that Palestinian Arab resistance is motivated by a desire for justice not by irrational hatred of Jews; or that calling Israel an Apartheid state is not anti-Semitic if the crime is also levelled at Myanmar.

And it’s hopeless to cite Israel’s democracy and rule of law so vaunted by Zionists. To the anti crowd this is mere varnish. Any good that Israel does never prods the likes of the World Health Organisation to revisit their ideas. To the contrary, varnish to them is further proof of just how nefarious the ‘Israeli State’ can be. Critics call it ‘washing’. They mean that when Israel does a good deed it’s a cynical ploy, a further proof how cunning those Jews can be. And they quote ‘facts’ which will never be fact-checked.

A WHO report blamed Israel for not meeting an obligation to vaccinate Palestinian Arabs. The world health body made capital of a disparity between vaccination rates of Israelis and Palestinian Arabs. It cited, dishonestly, the Fourth Geneva Convention to argue that Israel is duty bound to vaccinate them. In the meanwhile the Convention is about the “protection of civilian persons in time of war,” and ceases to apply a year after the “general close of military operations.” In any case, international law professor Eugene Kontorovich notes that the Oslo Accords specifically give the Palestinian Authority responsibility to vaccinate its people.

Roman Emperor Hadrian was much given to irony. In his day there were no Zionists to hate. But the Jews – they were too provoking for words. There was not much the Jews could do to please Hadrian. One of them saluted the Emperor which made him mad. “You a Jew dare to greet the Emperor! You shall pay with your life.” Then another Jew passed by and, warned by the first incident, he did not salute Hadrian. “You a Jew dare to pass the Emperor without a greeting! You shall forfeit your life.” Turning to bewildered courtiers Hadrian explained: “Whatever they do I find intolerable.”

Not to despair; an acute and accurate Jew-directed warhead can resolve the muddle. Its name is ‘Lawfare’ signifying the abuse of law for waging political war. Designed to punish Israel for fighting aback, or to block it from fighting back, the warhead was tested at the seafront of Durban in 2001, days before 9/11 changed the world.

At a forum for NGO’s during the first UN World Conference Against Racism, ‘critics’ of Israel crystallized a plan by which it would be singled out as an Apartheid state and isolated internationally through a campaign of boycott, divestment, and sanctions.

Observe the parts of Lawfare. The Agenda: to punish Israel for fighting back against a foe intent on murder, mayhem and martyrdom. The Design: to hamstring Israeli retaliation. The Trap: to set the bar for acceptable military response high enough to ensure that Israel won’t clear the bar. The looked-for result: to blow the whistle and haul Israel before the UN, the media, kangaroo courts and the court of opinion for crimes against humanity.

Don’t stick on what each element means; consider what they mean together: Israel may not kill the foe, injure the foe or damage property of the foe. One mistake and the whistle blows. Disproportionate! War crimes! And the looked-for verdict follows as a matter of course: Israel has no right to live.

At the end of the Holocaust a thin book, “Anti-Semite and Jew” dispelled the fog and evaporated the smokescreen. The author was French playwright and philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre. Thanks to his perspicacity we arrive at the parting of the ways between Israel critic and anti-Semite. Sartre supplies an identikit as foolproof as it is damning.

“The anti-Semite has murderous instincts, but has found a means of sating them. . . His thunderous diatribes at the ‘Yids’ are really capital executions. He is a murderer who represses and censures his tendency to murder without being able to hold it back, yet dares to kill only in effigy.”

Ramification? The instinct of Amnesty’s Philip Luther is no different to the instinct of your black-hooded decapitator. The one is a Jew killer in the closet, the second a Jew-killer in real time.

Apply the identikit to ShAmnesty, HRW and the WHO; to the UN and human rightists, to BDS, the media and politicians,. When next they scold Israel for practising this that or the other, be assured that you’ll not snag a real critic in your bagful of bigots.

Steve Apfel is an economist and costing specialist, but most of all a prolific author of fiction and non-fiction. His blog, ‘Balaam’s curse,’ is followed in 15 countries on 5 continents

This article is the preface to a forthcoming book by the writer: “Hitlers at heart: Anti-Zionism and its Believers”