Antisemitism – the hatred of Jews – is real. It is a real form of racism. As, arguably, Europe’s oldest racism, antisemitism is pervasive throughout western society. As it affects all of society it is unarguably true that there are anti-Semites and people who, for whatever reason, pass on anti-Semitic ideas, conspiracies, and opinions within the SNP and the wider independence movement – as these entities reflect broader society. But Fiona Robertson is right, we need a better definition than is to be found in the dictionary. How then do we define this particular racism?
Sectarianism is a serious social problem in our country, for sure, but there is little we can do about it when it happens outside institutions. We can’t police people’s homes to stop parents poisoning the minds of their children. The best we can do here is improve diversity awareness and education in schools and hope some of it sticks. But racism, prejudice, bigotry, and sectarianism thrive in institutions where such cultures have gone unchallenged and allowed to fester.
At the heart of this Israeli and Zionist definition is the deliberate conflation of Zionism – an ethno-nationalist state-political ideology – and Judaism, and, by extension, the conflation of anti-Zionism and antisemitism. How useful to the State of Israel – Katz’s “Jewish State” – would it be had this definition been adopted officially by the European Union as it was by the US State Department last year? Doubtless, this is what the AJC’s Andrew Baker had in mind when he negotiated with the EU to have it adopted. Yet, more rational heads prevailed.
But this new antisemitism – the use of “antisemitism” to silence dissent, by calling everything anti-Semitic, weakens our ability to combat real anti-Semitic racism. When everyone is an anti-Semite no one is an anti-Semite. Reasonable people who can see through the political weaponisation of this language begin to dismiss – as I have been guilty of doing – almost every claim of antisemitism. We become deaf to a terminology that, ever since Auschwitz, should ring immediate alarm bells the moment we hear it. “Antisemitism,” thanks to pro-government media outlets...
I wish her well – she needs it. She can do much better for herself. She’s about to marry the royal dud. This is wee Harry the hero who went to war for the cameras, who honoured his brothers and sisters in arms by wearing a Nazi uniform, and who has a thing for class-A narcotics and hired affection. He’s a shite example of a human being, but then the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. But yeah, “she’s unsuitable.”
Alex Salmond’s choice to broadcast his talk show on Russia Today, given that he would not be given such a luxury in the United Kingdom, has ruffled a few feathers. The British media and unionist voices in Scotland want to present this as Russian interference in our democracy, and in doing this they have deliberately re-ignited the fuse of the Russophobic prejudice they installed. This was easy for them to do because, as I have admitted, the fear of Russia is still very much part of our cultural psyché. All the old McCarthyist buttons are being pressed.
Can it be the case that a government would engage in such dirty tricks for the purposes of discrediting opponents or gaining a political advantage? Yes – they do it all the time. The hypothetical collusion here between the dark state and the fourth estate is the state government equivalent of a hacker
By undermining the logic of anti-racism in order to scapegoat Muslims and Islam the philosophical defence that protects us from antisemitism too has been damaged. If we can victimise Muslims because of their racial and religious backgrounds, it stands to reason that it may also be open season on Jews or anyone else.