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Criticism of Israel Is Not Anti-Semitism; Anti-Zionism Is

Dennis Prager on

Imagine a group of people who work to destroy Italy because, they claim, Italy's origins are illegitimate. Imagine further that these people maintain that of all the countries in the world, only Italy is illegitimate. And then imagine that these people vigorously deny they are in any way anti-Italian. Would you believe them? Or would you dismiss their argument as not only dishonest but absurd?

Substitute "Israel" for "Italy" and "Jew" for "Italian" and you'll understand the dishonesty and absurdity of the argument that one can be anti-Zionist but not anti-Semitic.

But that is precisely what anti-Zionists say. They argue that the very existence of a Jewish state in the geographic area known as Palestine -- there was never an independent country known as Palestine -- is illegitimate. They do not believe any other country in the world is illegitimate, no matter how bloody its origins. And then they get offended when they're accused of being anti-Semitic.

How can they make this argument?

First, they change the topic. They say it is unfair to charge those who merely "criticize" Israel with being anti-Semitic. But I don't know anyone who does that. It's a phony argument. Criticism of Israel is fine. Denying Israel's right to exist is not. Anti-Zionism is not criticism of Israel. Anti-Zionism is opposition to Israel's existence.

Zionism is the movement for the return of Jews to their ancient homeland, Israel. Over the past 3,000 years, there were two independent Jewish states located in what is called Israel. Both were destroyed by invaders, and no Arab or Muslim or any other independent country ever existed in that land, which was only named Palestine by the Romans in an attempt to remove all memory of the Jewish state they destroyed in the year A.D. 70.

 

Second, anti-Zionists claim they can't be anti-Jewish because Zionism has nothing to do with Judaism. That, too, is equally false. It is the same as saying that Italy has nothing to do with being Italian. Judaism has always consisted of three components: God, Torah and Israel. If Israel isn't part of Judaism, neither is the Bible or God.

Third, anti-Zionists claim that Judaism is only a religion; therefore, Jews are only members of a religion, not a nation. But the Jews are called the "nation of Israel" repeatedly in the Bible. That is why there are irreligious, secular and even atheist Jews -- because Jews are not only a religion. There are no atheist Christians because Christianity is only a religion.

Fourth, the anti-Zionists claim that Israel is illegitimate because it is racist. This is the charge Israel- and America-haters make against two of the least racist societies in the world. In the case of Israel, it is fraudulent because:

a) Half of Israel's Jews are not white.

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