The Dilemma of America’s Liberal Jewish Zionists

The Dilemma of America’s Liberal Jewish Zionists

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Post-Blog

White Zionism – Why The
‘Alt-Right’ Hates Jews But Loves Israel

It has become almost an apocryphal tale of America’s
liberal Zionists and their PEP (Progressive Except for Palestine)
attitudes.  America’s Jews generally
support liberal politics and the vast majority of them voted against Donald
Trump.  Why?   Because racial intolerance and bigotry aren’t
in their interest.  They know enough to know that anti-Semitism and white supremacism have always gone hand in hand.
Netanyahu is so enthralled by Trump that he even adopts his language style
The problem though is that the majority of them,
even today, support to a greater or lesser extent the State of Israel.  The State of Israel is not a liberal haven
but the bastion of a far-Right openly racist government headed by Benjamin Netanyahu.  Netanyahu it was who tweeted to Donald Trump
that Israel had already built a wall to keep out asylum seekers.  He was referring to the wall across the
border with Egypt to keep out African refugees. 
Netanyahu explained that non-Jewish refugees, especially Black Africans,
explained that ‘“If we don’t stop their entry, the problem that
currently stands at 60,000 could grow to 600,000, and that threatens our
existence as a Jewish and democratic state,”
Israel
PM: illegal African immigrants threaten identity of Jewish state
So when Rabbi Rosenberg, who heads the Zionist organisation
for students, Hillel at Texas A&M told Richard Spencer of the alt-Right
that “My tradition teaches a message of radical
inclusion and love,”
Spencer responded by asking how radical this inclusion
was.  Maybe all of the Middle East could
come to Tel Aviv he asked mischievously. 
The good Rabbi was more than aware that Israel is anything but
inclusive.  It hasn’t taken a single Syrian
refugee.  It refuses to give citizenship
to any of the thousands of migrant labourers from Asia.  It even prevents its own Palestinian citizens
from marrying anyone in the West Bank. 
And of course in order to ensure that the Jewish race maintains its ‘identity’
and purity, there is no religious marriage either.
The good rabbi was literally stunned into silence – he had no answer.  How could he support segregation and the racist Law of Return when it came to Israel but support liberal immigration policies and anti-racist in America.  He simply had no answer to this dilemma and the writer of the article has no answer either.
It is not any
wonder that Israel  presents a model to most of the American
far-Right, just as it is a model for most of the European far-Right?  Of course there are dedicated neo-Nazis like Andrew
Anglin of the Daily Stormer for whom
any Jew is an enemy.  But Anglin and fully
blown neo-Nazism represents a minority current within the American
alt-Right.  For those like Spencer and
Breitbart News, anti-Semitism and dislike of Jews co-exists quite happily with
strong support for Israel.  Israel is not
only the ideal pure racial state but it is also the hammer of Muslims.  The fact that it is Jewish is neither here
nor there.
Below is another
anguished article in the Jewish Forward magazine, which is finding it hard to
come to terms with the fact that the alt-Right which has come into the
political mainstream thanks to Trump, combines both love of Israel and a
dislike and worse of ordinary Jews.  It
proves though once again that being an anti-Semite is no barrier to being a Zionist. 
Milo Yiannopoulos
That is why people
like Spencer and Milo Yiannopoulos former senior editor of Breitbart, who has
openly said that Jews control the media and the banks, call themselves White Zionists.  Israel provides the perfect model for white
supremacists (who like Jewish supremacists call themselves nationalists).   Hence why Spencer says that his ‘white
“homeland,”
he said, would be “very similar to how Jews conceive of Israel.”
That of course is why
those who claim there is any correlation between anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism
are either outright liars or mainstream fools (or both).
Tony Greenstein
When
Rabbi Matt Rosenberg went to a speech presented by one of the country’s leading
white nationalists, he hoped to make a statement about the power of Judaism.
During a question-and-answer session after the talk, Rosenberg, who heads
Hillel at Texas A&M, asked Richard Spencer, the self-styled ambassador of
the “alt-right,” whether the two could sit down and study together.
“My
tradition teaches a message of radical inclusion and love,” Rosenberg said.
“Will you sit town and learn Torah with me, and learn love?”

“Do
you really want radical inclusion into the State of Israel?”
Spencer asked, a
smile spreading across his face. “And by that I mean radical inclusion. Maybe
all of the Middle East could go move into Tel Aviv or Jerusalem. Would you
really want that?”

Rosenberg
fell silent. Spencer did not. He went on, saying the Jewish people have
prevailed because they resist assimilation — and he respected that.
“Jews
exist precisely because you did not assimilate,”
he said. “I respect that about
you. I want my people to have that same sense of themselves.”
The two men were
speaking about different Jewish paradigms: Jews as nation versus Jews as
citizens of the world. One of them Spencer praised; the other he sneered at.
New Face: White nationalist and leading ‘alt-right’ figure Richard Spencer addresses a crowd at Texas A&M University in December.
To
be sure, the “alt-right,” a contemporary label preferred by white separatists,
traffics in xenophobia and nativism of all sorts, including anti-Semitism. Jews
are hardly its only, or most prominent, target, but the specter of imagined Jewish
control, in which Jews seek to undermine white civilization, is a constant
boogeyman.
Yet
messages like Spencer’s at Texas A&M reveal another layer of this latest
brand of white nationalism. Spencer says his dream of building a “white
ethno-state
” is “very similar to how Jews conceive of Israel.” He even
describes his vision as something like “white Zionism.
Spencer’s
complicated relationship with Jews is illustrative. In the sprawling and
divided world of the “alt-right” there are multiple factions. All groups
imagine whites as an embattled group, whose white power and control is under
threat from non-whites. But they are divided on the next part: Are Jews an
enemy to the white nation, a model to emulate, or some combination?
In
a glossy
promotional video
for Spencer’s organization, the National Policy
Institute, a pro-Israel march flashes across the screen as Spencer reads aloud,
“At a time when every other people is asserting its own [identity]… are we
ready to become who we are?”

‘Jesus
Christ Was A Jewish Klansman.’
Spencer
isn’t the first white separatist to hold seemingly contradictory views on the
Jews. Earlier white supremacists like the Ku Klux Klan had a similar love-hate
relationship; Spencer and his cohort are building on these foundations.
In
a 1926 tract on “religious and patriotic ideals,” one
KKK-affiliated minister praised Jews as “a wonderful people,” particularly the
way in which they have maintained the “purity of their racial blood, refusing
to intermarry with other races.”
White Terror: Hooded Ku Klux Klan members meet, circa 1920. One leader of the white supremacist group praised Jews for being ‘Klannish since the days of Abraham,’ even as Jews were denounced as ‘an evil influence.’
The
minister, a Texan named W. C. Wright, called Jesus Christ a Klansman — because
he “belonged to the oldest Klan in existence, the Jewish theocracy.”

In
Wright’s imagination, Jesus promoted a type of Jewish supremacy — just as the
KKK fought for white supremacy. “Jews have been Klannish since the days of
Abraham,”
Wright wrote.
Even
an Imperial Wizard of the KKK’s heyday had praise, of sorts, for Jews.
Alabama-born Hiram Wesley Evans, who presided over the KKK in the 1920s, called
Jews “healthy, morally alert, energetic, loyal and reverent.”
But
there always has been — and still is — a flipside to this admiration of the
Jews.
In
1923 address titled The Menace of Modern Immigration,” Evans called Jews
“alien and inassimilable,” a breed of people who demonstrated an “evil
influence.”

There
[was] admiration but also a nervousness about what Jews mean for larger
national culture,”
Kelly J. Baker, author of “Gospel According to the Klan,” told the Forward.
They were saying: ‘We can admire that they have not assimilated, that they
have stayed separate — and immediately follow it, ‘But I think they are
primarily evil.’”

I
Began Rethinking Everything.’
Years
ago, before his David Duke affiliations, “Hail Trump”
Nazi salutes
and rise to fame amid the campaign of Donald Trump, Spencer attended
elite private schools in Dallas. Some of his classmates and friends were
Jewish.
“The
Jews were the kids that told me Santa Claus wasn’t real. They were kind of
nerdy and little different,”
Spencer said. “I didn’t have any major problems
with them.”

Spencer
didn’t reflect too much on Jewishness or on race at all.
Kurt
Hoffman

He
was a dedicated student, and in 2005, Spencer entered a doctoral program at
Duke University, studying European intellectual history.
But
he dropped out, his website reads, “to pursue a life of thought-crime.”

He
had flirted with far-right ideology, but in the next years he would make a more
dramatic shift. “I knew there was something wrong with the world,” Spencer told
the Forward. “I began rethinking everything.”
In
2010 he founded a website called AlternativeRight.com and around the same time
took the helm at the NPI think-tank, which is “dedicated to the heritage,
identity, and future of people of European descent in the United States.
Among
his influences he cites Jared Taylor, the white nationalist editor of the
website American Renaissance, which describes itself as the “premier
race-realist site
” on the internet. An early mentor of Spencer’s, Paul Gottfried,
the inventor of the term “alternative right,” is Jewish and is a graduate of
Yeshiva University.
Taylor
describes himself as a “white advocate,” but he has made clear that he has no
problem working with Jews; one time, he even banned discussion of the so-called
“Jewish question” from online forums associated with American Renaissance.
And
Spencer has said he respects some Jewish nationalists, including the prime
minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu.
I
would say, if I were to have a beer with Netanyahu I bet we would agree on
everything. I think we would see eye to eye,”
Spencer said. “If I had a beer
with Jon Stewart, he would be horrified and I would be annoyed.”

Spencer’s
white ethno state” is his long-term goal. It’s just a dream, he says, and he’s
not sure how to get there. But he evokes the success of the Zionist project.
His white “homeland,” he said, would be “very similar to how Jews conceive of
Israel.”

Theodor
Herzl conceived of his Jewish state as a solution to the imperiled condition of
Jews in the Diaspora. Herzl and his cohort feared that something catastrophic
was on the horizon. The horrors of the Holocaust — millions of Jews murdered by
the Nazis — were the heinous culmination of European anti-Semitism. The mass
killing helped galvanize support for the Jewish national project in the Middle
East.
‘Alt Right’ Model? Members of the pre-state Haganah defense movement gather at Kibbutz Brenner in British Mandate of Palestine in 1938.

Israel’s
founding document, its Declaration of Independence, while declaring the country
a Jewish state, also made a “striking embrace of all peoples and religions,”
said Jonathan Sarna, professor of American Jewish history at Brandeis
University.
It
would be difficult to square that with the notion of a white nation,”
Sarna
said. “That is the very opposite of what the white nationalists want.”

For
“alt-right” members who see Zionism in a positive light of sorts, it may have
little to do with the country of Israel itself.

“For
a lot of people, Israel is a Rorschach test,”
Sarna said. “What they see in
Israel tells us more about them than it does about Israel.”

Spencer
compares himself to pre-state Zionist thinkers, seeing his role as a dreamer —
not necessarily as someone who would build his whites-only nation, but one who
would lay conceptual groundwork for a state.
“A
similar thing could be said of Jews. Jews were imagining Zionism there is a
Jewish state in the Middle East,”
Spencer said in a radio interview with the website Reveal. “You have to
dream it before you build it.
” he said, trying his hand at a very
Herzlian-sounding mantra.
There
is often talk about ‘Zionism’ as being a horrible evil that intends to take
over the world,”
author Brett Stevens wrote in August on the website
Alternative-right.blogpost.com, “forgetting that Zionism is an assertion of
Nationalism — the idea that Jews need their own state, and all Jews belong
there, where they can control their destiny and live according to their ways.”
‘There
Are Two Alt-Rights.’

Still,
Spencer’s admiration for Jews is mixed with repulsion — particularly the belief
that Jews have played a negative and outsize role in the decline of white
civilization. And this attitude can be found across the contemporary white
nationalist camp, which is beset with internecine disputes.
He
calls the so-called “Jewish question” (or “JQ,”
in contemporary “alt-right” lingo
) among the most “complicated and
difficult” topics for white nationalists. The term “Jewish question” of course
is best known for its use in Nazi Germany, where leaders gathered on the shores
of Lake Wannsee outside Berlin to plan the “Final Solution to the Jewish
Question in Europe.”

He
sees some liberal Jews, like the Texan rabbi, as “duplicitous,” presenting
their case in “gooey, universalistic” terms. “I think it is easy to understand
black crime, illegal immigrants, that’s in your face,” Spencer said. “But the
Jewish question is extremely complicated.”

Indeed,
the question of just how the “alt-right” should relate to Jews is a frequent
fault line among Spencer’s followers and fellow travelers.
In
December, the divergent views of the “alt-right” on Jews came to a head after
online personality Tim Treadstone (better known as “Baked Alaska”) was booted
from an upcoming “alt-right” inauguration event called the Deploraball after a
series of tweets he wrote about the media being “run in majority by Jewish
people.”
“Alt-right”
personality Mike Cernovich, the event’s organizer, was worried that
Treadstone’s anti-Semitism would undermine the growing political influence of
the “alt-right” after Trump’s win. “No Nazi salutes, no JQ bullshit,” Cernovich
wrote privately to Treadstone, scolding him and removing him from the event
bill shortly thereafter. Paul Joseph Watson, an editor of the conspiracist
website Infowars, which is also associated with the “alt-right,” described the
“two ‘alt-rights.’”
One
likes to wear Trump hats, “create memes & have fun,” he wrote in a public Facebook post. “The other faction
likes to fester in dark corners of subreddits and obsess about Jews, racial
superiority and Adolf Hitler.”

‘At
The End Of The Day, We Are Very Different.’
The
most fiercely anti-Jew faction of the “alt-right” may be best personified in
Andrew Anglin, who runs the neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer.
In
the ongoing battle for the trajectory of the “alt-right” movement, Anglin has
offered his views bluntly: “The goal is to ethnically cleanse white nations of
nonwhites and establish an authoritarian government. Many people also believe
that the Jews should be exterminated.”

Troll King: Andrew Anglin, founder and editor of the neo-Nazi Daily Stormer website, has called for the ‘extermination’ of Jews.
And
unlike Spencer, Anglin has no admiration for Israel or Zionism. He cheers
terrorist attacks against Israelis, laments the special U.S.-Israel
relationship and sees in that relationship an expression of ultimate Jewish
power. Anglin’s website has billed itself as the “The World’s Most
Visited ‘Alt-Right’ Website”
and features stories on alleged Jewish world
control and black-on-white crime. Anglin has mounted numerous online campaigns
— dubbed “troll storms” — against Jewish public figures. (The attacks have
provocative titles, like “Operation: Jew Wife” or “Operation: Filthy Jew
Bitch.”)
Anglin’s
most recent campaign calls for an armed march against local Jews in Whitefish,
Montana, where Spencer lives part time. Montana is among the country’s whitest
states and has a minuscule Jewish population; however, the Whitefish area is a
Jewish hub of sorts, home to a community of more than 100 families and
individuals.
Anglin’s
anti-Jewish campaign is in response to local activism against white nationalism
and Spencer in particular. But Anglin sees Spencer and his family as the true
victims: the Jews, the persecutors.
The
Jewish relationship to the goyim in this country has for decades resembled a
man lying on the ground and being kicked in the head. Well, the goyim are
standing up,”
Anglin — who said he no longer speaks with any Jew on the
telephone — wrote in an email to the Forward.
Spencer
and Anglin agree on a lot. Spencer imagines the Whitefish Jews as people who
have “set up left-wing organizations on their behalf,” perpetually “alien” to
the world they live in. Spencer said he appreciates Anglin’s support.
But
Spencer has also called for the Whitefish fiasco to “come to an end.”

In
his Forward interview, Spencer said he hoped to spend the next weeks around
Washington, possibly working on a short documentary. He had no plans to be in
Whitefish for the march, building his own movement.
While
Anglin rants against Jewish control in rural Montana, Spencer wants to build
his “white Zionism” in D.C.
Within
the broad category of the “alt-right,” you have people who have “genocidal
views and people who have views of admiration, both of which are based on
stereotypes,”
said Chip Berlet, an independent researcher of white supremacy.
“In
the minds of some people, Jews are either exceptionally talented or in league
with Satan,”
Berlet said. “It’s a love-hate relationship.”

“Clearly
there has been a Jewish role in white dispossession,”
Spencer said in his
Forward interview, echoing Anglin and others. “But the ‘alt-right’ can learn
something from Jewish history.”
How,
exactly? “We can build networks that are national and international,” Spencer
said.
Then
he added, “We can also be a bit duplicitous.” 

 

 

 

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