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How to Tell When Defending Israel Is Actually Racist


How to Tell When Defending Israel Is Actually Racist

Steven Salaita

Those empathetic to Palestinians toil in unhappy corners of the internet, fending off trolls eager to dazzle with age-old vitriol. But decorated professionals recite the same discourses throughout corporate media, the veneer of respectability making them even more grotesque. Anti-Arab racism underlies defense of Israel. The racism isn’t marginal, either; it’s the lingua franca of American punditry.


Remember the time when many in the Jewish diaspora community sought socialism and opposed Zionism?


The Bundist alternative to Zionism appears to be written out of the history of the Jews. Bundists rejected emigration to Palestine as a solution and favoured a social revolution in their ‘real homeland’, i.e., the place they were born or lived. To rid the world of anti-semitism, the world itself had to change, class society had to be ended everywhere, and this was a struggle that began at home – or as Marx put it, ‘The proletariat of each country must, of course, first of all settle matters with its own bourgeoisie.’ The Bund urged Jews to remain in their countries of residence, support the workers’ movement of that country, and forge a Jewish culture around the Yiddish language. The belief of Bundists of trying to build a better Jewish life in the country where Jews lived was rejected outright by Zionism.


very informative article! thanks common dreams for publishing this. just last night i heard a report that “antisemitism” is on the rise in europe. i know so many fine people of jewish heritage and think people don’t confuse judaism with likude zionism. let the trolls keep their broad brushes! they have little else.