Short statement on the current state of anti-Semitism in
by Sacha Stawski,
President of Honestly Concerned e.V., ILI – I LIKE ISRAEL e.V. and of the “Dachverband gegen Antisemitismus” / “Umbrella organization against anti-Semitism” (which represents 14 member organizations (NGOs), with a combined membership of some 30.000 people)
In 2002, when Honestly Concerned was founded, we considered the right-wing-vote hunting by the then deputy head of the Liberal Democratic Party (FDP), Jürgen Möllemann, to be one of the worst anti-Semitism scandals since the Second World War. Sadly, what was then considered to be a great outrage, has since then become virtual accepted practice. Today anti-Semitism is more “salonfähig”, “out of the closet”, than ever.
The “National Democratic Party of Germany” (NPD) has succeeded at bringing Holocaust denial and anti-Semitic smear speeches into regional governments, into which they were elected. The Left party (DIE LINKE), former ruling party of East Germany, has even succeeded at bringing anti-Semitism onto the floor of the Bundestag. By denying respect to the Jewish guest of honour, Shimon Peres, whose father was killed by Nazis, and who is now President of another country, by not rising from their seats on Holocaust Memorial day (January 27, 2010), some members of DIE LINKE gave a taste of what can be expected from them in the future. The “Marvi Marmara” flotilla incident and a unanimous anti-Israel motion, passed by all members of the Bundestag, took things one step further still.
While many Bundestag motions get passed every day, there are rarely, if ever, motions passed, when terrorists murder Israeli citizens, or when Israeli officers get killed by Lebanese snipers on Israeli soil, or when radicals murder thousands in Darfur or elsewhere for “ethnic” reasons. Similarly, no motion was passed after members of parliament (from DIE LINKE) were on board a ship financed by a known extremist organization, the IHH.
Such double standard is applied only, when it comes to Israel. According to the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (formerly EUMC) and its definition of anti-Semitism, the Bundestag has an anti-Semitism problem when all factions unanimously single out Israel. Stephan Kramer, General Secretary of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, warned, that the “German solidarity tide” may be turning. That must be taken seriously and should be seen as a warning siren, not only by all the members of the Bundestag, but also by all Jews.
Today it has become “fashionable” to mitigate the Holocaust by comparing it to all sorts of other things. The word “Jew” is commonly equated with the word “Israeli” and has become a common curse, especially by Muslim immigrants. Calls for Jews to be sent to the gas chambers have been tolerated chants at anti-Israel demonstrations across the country. Likewise, it has become “hip” to be an outspoken anti-Zionist, even among the “mainstream”, while denying the existence of anti-Semitism simultaneously. Today Neo-Nazi skinheads do not present a real danger. Today the real threat comes from hate preachers, their followers, from those who cannot differentiate between the individual Jew and the Jewish State, and those who cross over the line from legitimate criticism of Israel to a virulent anti-Zionism, denying the mere existence of the Jewish state. Even worse – and increasingly more dangerous still are the virulent anti-Israel voices of extreme leftwing Israeli or Jewish intellectuals, like Felicia Langer, Hajo Meyer, Uri Avnery, Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, Rolf Verleger, or Moshe Zimmermann. Based on the assumption that “if a Jew criticizes Israel, it must be correct”, these “expert witnesses” are frequently called upon by the mainstream media as alleged representatives of the “silent majority” in Israel or among Jews in Germany, thereby becoming a serious force in terms of spreading anti-Semitic libels and Palestinian propaganda.