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cab67

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Member since: Wed Jul 24, 2013, 12:10 PM
Number of posts: 1,253

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antisemitism vs criticism of Israel

Rep. Omar did the right thing by apologizing for what she said. It crossed the line from being critical of Israel to using antisemitic stereotypes.

That being said - the conflation of Israel and Judaism that Rep. Omar seems to have made is not unique to antisemites. Although I haven't encountered it here on DU, I've experienced it elsewhere from people who are otherwise very progressive.

I have been accused of antisemitism as recently as last week. My transgression? Expressing disagreement with Israel's policy of building settlements in the West Bank and sympathy with Palestinians who feel oppressed.

I find it offensive. I was raised Gentile, but my wife and daughter are Jewish.

Judaism is a vibrant, diverse group of communities bound by religious and cultural traditions dating back centuries or even millennia. It has tenaciously survived repeated attempts at extermination and genocide, and its gifts to the world - cultural, literary, philosophical, artistic, scientific, and (in my case, at least) personal - are tremendous and outsized compared with the size of the Jewish population worldwide.

Israel is a nation state founded in 1947. It has long been a staunch US ally, and (based in part on my own experiences in Israel) its people have built and defended a remarkable national infrastructure in a hostile region during its short existence. But that doesn't mean I have to agree with everything its government does.

I speak up frequently against US policy. That doesn't make me anti-American. Same principle.

I realize I'm probably speaking to the choir here, but I can't imagine I'm the only one here who feels trepidation when criticizing Israeli policy. Israel is not the same as Judaism.


Added on edit - I should have added "culinary" to the broad list of Jewish contributions. I've managed some success with my efforts to adopt them. Evidently, one or two of my in-laws called me "Latke Goy" over the holidays.
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