The headline above Mr. Stephens June 9, 2017 essay is ‘The Year of Voting Recklessly’ that purports to be a comment on elections in Britain, America and France. There is the usual political chatter, none of it outside the bourgeois mainstream politics of The New York Times, an amalgam of Neo-Liberalism and Neo-Conservatism, and its usual accompaniment of Trump Hysterics. Mr. Stephens never enlightens the reader nor informs her, his real specialty is propaganda. And in this essay his animus is directed against Jeremy Corbyn, with the aid of a Report confected by Corbyn’s New Labour opponents. The foundation of the ‘Labour Antisemitism Scandal’ was founded on an editorial cartoon depicting Israel as America’s 51st State and Ken Livingstone’s recitation of the historically inconvenient facts. All this woven into a Scandal by New Labour apologist and Guardian columnist Jonathan Freedland. With added help from the Bagehot columnist at The Economist. Here is a link to The Economist and Bagehot’s notebook of April 28, 2016 titled ‘By tolerating Jeremy Corbyn, Labour’s moderates are complicit in their party’s shame’
A screen capture of my comments:
Permalink to my comments: http://www.economist.com/comment/3108661#comment-3108661
Jonathan Freedland’s contribution to the Anti-Corbyn hysterics, of a New Labour Blair loyalist, not to speak of Zionist Apologist:
Headline: Labour and the left have an antisemitism problem
Sub-headline: Under Jeremy Corbyn the party has attracted many activists with views hostile to Jews. Its leaders must see why this matters
But this is the brick wall Jews keep running into: the belief that what Jews are complaining about is not antisemitism at all, but criticism of Israel. Jews hear this often. They’re told the problem arises from their own unpleasant habit of identifying any and all criticism of Israel as anti-Jewish racism. Some go further, alleging that Jews’ real purpose in raising the subject of antisemitism is to stifle criticism of Israel.
You can see the appeal of such an argument to those who use it. It means all accusations of antisemitism can be dismissed as mere Israel-boosting propaganda. But Downing and Kirby make that harder. Their explicit targets were Jews.
What of those who attack not Jews, but only Zionists? Defined narrowly, that can of course be legitimate. If one wants to criticise the historical movement that sought to re-establish Jewish self-determination in Palestine, Zionism is the right word.
But Zionism, as commonly used in angry left rhetoric, is rarely that historically precise. It has blended with another meaning, used as a codeword that bridges from Israel to the wider Jewish world, hinting at the age-old, antisemitic notion of a shadowy, global power, operating behind the scenes. For clarity’s sake, if you want to attack the Israeli government, the 50-year occupation or hawkish ultra-nationalism, then use those terms: they carry much less baggage.
To state the obvious, criticism of Israel and Zionism is not necessarily anti-Jewish: that’s why there are so many Jewish critics of Israel, inside and outside the country. But it doesn’t take a professor of logic to know that just because x is not always y, it does not follow that x can never be y. Of course opposition to Israel is not always antisemitic. But that does not mean that it is never and can never be antisemitic. As Downing and Kirby have helpfully illustrated.
In this section of his comment Mr. Freedland provides his propaganda strategy in a less that succinct way: Anti-Zionism is in fact equal to Anti-Semitism: the rhetorical invention of ‘Anti-Semite/Self-hating Jew’ makes any critique of Israel/Zionism prima facae equal to Anti-Semitism!
The Key Findings that Mr. Stephens links to in his essay address the very question I have just raised about the equality of meaning of Anti-Zionism and Anti-Semitism: (A screen capture of those ‘Findings’, and a link to the report follow.)
In a Parliament dominated by Tories and New Labour apologists for Israel/Zionism, what other conclusion could be reached in this utterly hostile political environment to Mr. Corbyn?
As an experienced editor of the Jerusalem Post, a propaganda arm of the State of Israel, Mr. Stephens understands the imperative that the popular press press played in the smearing of Mr. Corbyn. The ‘trail and conviction’ of Mr. Corbyn took place in that popular press followed by a Parliament Report that was dominated by Tories and New Labour Blairites.
Mr. Stephens’ search for bourgeois political respectability, his move to the New York Times demonstrates that career imperative, and his reference to the Parliament report is demonstrative of that search. While he ignores the concerted effort by respectable publications, like The Economist and The Guardian, and their ‘reporters’ to engage in a concerted smear campaign on the nascent revival of the Labour Party, in the person of Corbyn. In sum, Corbyn announced the end of Blairism, as the dark shadow of Thatcherism, or more candidly expressed as an utter betrayal of the reason d’etre of the Labour Party. In sum Corbyn is the political end to Thatcher’s TINA and Blair’s obsequious echo.
Karl Kraus’ Ghost