Jewish Critics of Zionism and of Israel’s Treatment of the Palestinians

It may surprise some but most of the strongest critics of Zionism and Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians are Jewish. However, as Michael Selzer writes, “Zionism is a complex phenomenon, adequately understood by only a small percentage of its critics and by even a smaller percentage of its supporters.”1 As Professor Yakov M. Rabkin writes, “According to a sarcastic remark of an Israeli colleague, ‘Our claim to this land could be put in a nutshell: God does not exist, and he gave us this land.’ Indeed, secular nationalism and religious rhetoric lie at the root of the Zionist enterprise.”2

The political ideology of Zionism was the subject of intense debate, especially within the Jewish religious community. However, Zionism meant different things to different people. Zionism could be interpreted in a religious, political, national or racial light depending upon the circumstances. For some, Zionism was a solution for the age-old problem of anti-Semitism. For others merely an excuse for getting rid of the Jews. As Hannah Arendt noted, “The Zionist Organization had developed a genius for not answering, or answering ambiguously, all questions of political consequence. Everyone was free to interpret Zionism as he pleased …”3

The only Jewish member of Lloyd George’s cabinet when Great Britain first threw its weight behind Zionism in 1917, Sir Edwin Montagu, was adamantly opposed to the creation of a Jewish state. He attacked the Balfour Declaration and Zionism because he believed they were anti-Semitic. Montagu argued that Zionism and anti-Semitism were based on the same premise, namely that Jews and non-Jews could not co-exist.4

Montagu’s opposition to Zionism and the Balfour Declaration was supported by the leading representative bodies of Anglo-Jewry at the time, the Board of Deputies and the Anglo-Jewish Association, and in particular, by three prominent British Jews Claude Montefiore,5 David Alexander and Lucien Wolf.6

Without the history of Christian anti-Semitism that has existed in Europe and the centuries of persecution of the European Jewish community political Zionism would have no legitimacy.7 As Hannah Arendt noted that on the question of anti-Semitism the Zionists “have indeed exploited it.”8

Here is what the ultra-Othodox Neturi Karta anti-Zionist Jewish sect say’s about the political Zionists and how they exploit anti-Semitism:

It is openly stated in books written by the founders of Zionism that the means by which they planned to establish a state was by instigating anti-Semitism, and undermining the security of the Jews in all the lands of the world, until they would be forced to flee to their state. And thus they did – They intentionally infuriated the German people and fanned the flames of Nazi hatred, and they helped the Nazis, with trickery and deceit, to take whole Jewish communities off to the concentration camps, and the Zionists themselves admit this. (See the books Perfidy, Min Hameitzor, etc.). The Zionists continue to practice this strategy today. They incite anti-Semitism and then they present themselves as the “saviors”. Here are two replies given by Leaders of the Zionists during World War II, when they were asked for money to help ransom Jews from the Nazis. Greenbaum said “One cow in Palestine is worth more than all the Jews in Poland.” (G-d forbid).

Weitzman said, “The most important part of the Jewish people is already in the land (of Israel) and those who are left, are unimportant” (May we be spared).9

Lenni Brenner in his book Zionism in the Age of the Dictators provides documentation of the anti-Semitic tendencies of the Zionists. For example who told a Berlin audience in March 1912 that “each country can absorb only a limited number of Jews, if she doesn’t want disorders in her stomach. Germany already has too many Jews?” It was not Adolf Hitler but Chaim Weizmann. He later became president of the World Zionist Organization and was the first president of the state of Israel.10

Here is another example Brenner unearthed, originally composed in 1917 but republished as late as 1936: “The Jew is a caricature of a normal, natural human being, both physically and spiritually. As an individual in society he revolts and throws off the harness of social obligation, knows no order nor discipline?” It was not published in Der Sturmer, the Nazi Party paper, but in the organ of the Zionist youth organization, Hashomer Hatzair.11

According to Brenner the above quoted statements reveal that Zionism itself encouraged and exploited anti-Semitism in the Diaspora. Zionists started from the assumption that anti-Semitism was inevitable and even in a sense justified so long as Jews were outside the land of Israel.12

Stephen Lendman also cites anti-Semitic or anti-Jewish motivation targeted against diaspora Jews as a means to create or help build a Jewish state. He quotes True Torah Jews Against Zionism as saying believing Zionism protects Jews is “probably the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the Jewish People” and accuses Zionists of fostering global anti-Semitism. “Indeed, hatred of Jews and Jewish suffering is the oxygen of the Zionist movement, and from the very beginning has been (used) to deliberately incite hatred to justify the existence of the Zionist state — this is, of course, Machiavellianism raised to the highest order.”13 Lendman quotes leading Zionists in support of this thesis. The founder of Zionism Theodor Herzl is reported to have said:

It is essential that the suffering of Jews … becomes worse … this will assist in (the) realization of our plans . . . I have an excellent idea … I shall induce anti-semites to liquidate Jewish wealth … The anti-semites will assist us thereby in that they will strengthen the persecution and oppression of Jews. The anti-semites shall be our best friends.13

According to Lendman other leading Zionists also shared this view:

In 1920, other Zionists voiced similar ideas, including Nahum Goldmann, later president of the World Zionist Organization and World Jewish Congress head. Israel’s first president, Chaim Weizman, said Germany had too many Jews. In 1921, Jacob Klatzkin called for German Jews to undermine Jewish communities as a way to acquire a future state.

In 1963, Moshe Sharett (Israel’s second prime minister from 1953-1955) told the 38th Scandinavian Youth Federation Annual Congress that Jewish freedom imperiled Zionism. Delegates at the 26th World Zionist Congress were told that easing US anti-Semitism and freedom endangered Jews.13

According to the Israeli daily Haaretz, Golda Meir, who was Israel’s Foreign Minister in 1958 and later Israel’s Prime Minister, told Israel’s ambassador to Poland, Katriel Katz, “don’t send sick or disabled Jews to Israel.” This letter, written in April 1958 and marked “Secret Top,” was discovered by a Polish historian Szymon Rudnicki. Professor Rudnicki said that “the content of the letter surprised him as a scholar and a Jew.” He elaborated, “This is a very cynical document … It is known that Golda was a brutal politician who defended interests more than people.” This letter seems to indicate that Golda Meir who became Prime Minister of Israel was more interested in building “the Jewish State” than saving or showing compassion to Jews.”14

The truth is that many Jews were anti-Zionist and opposed the settlement of Jews in Palestine.15 In fact historically Zionism was not supported by the majority of Jews. As Nahum Goldmann, former President of the World Jewish Congress wrote, “When Zionism first appeared on the world scene most Jews opposed it and scoffed at it. Herzl was only supported by a small minority.”16

There is a very respected and honored Jewish tradition of opposition to injustice and human rights violations. There is no monolithic position for Jews when it comes to Israel and the Palestinian issue. Many prominent Jewish intellectuals and activists have criticized Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians.17

Franz Kafka, for example, was very critical of Zionism. According to Philip Weiss, “Kafka was against political Zionism because he understood it would transform the Jewish presence in society. It would make Jews the administrators of a nation rather than inhabitants of one. I think he anticipated that Jewish nationalism would call on the worst aspects of Jewish society.”18

There is an article published in Haaretz that suggests that Kafka was a Zionist. However, the article also quotes Louis Begley’s new book, The Tremendous World I Have Inside My Head: Franz Kafka: A Biographical Essay. Begley writes, “that despite the writer’s preoccupation with his Jewish identity, he was neither a Zionist nor an active member of the Jewish community.” Mr. Begley quotes Kafka as saying, “I admire Zionism and am nauseated by it.”19

A subsequent article published in Haaretz, also addressed Kafka’s views on Zionism. Here is an excerpt from the essay written by Dan Miron a Jewish and Israeli scholar. Miron holds the Leonard Kaye chair for Hebrew and comparative literature at Columbia University, and is a professor emeritus at the Hebrew University in Israel. On Kafka he wrote:

And yet we can say, with a fair degree of certainty, that Kafka’s gut reaction to the modern national-cultural Jewish enterprise, whether or not he was a Zionist, was one of distaste. Proof can be found across the spectrum, from his almost roaring silence to a variety of criticisms, some harsher in tone than others, such as his remark that Bialik’s poetry “exploited” the Kishinev pogrom to promote a certain agenda.

To put it bluntly, Kafka couldn’t stand modern national Jewish culture and the literature that cultivated and promoted it, especially the Hebrew-Zionist brand. Not only did he say outright on several occasions that he had no interest in this kind of literature (as opposed to Talmudic legends and mainly Hasidic tales, which he probably read in Buber’s famous adaptations), but he was totally opposed to it …20

Clearly Kafka was not a political Zionist despite efforts of some to make him a supporter of Zionism.

Sigmund Freud also would not have been surprised at the continuing conflict in the Middle East. He predicted as much 70 years ago. Here are Freud’s views on political Zionism given in a letter he wrote to Dr. Chaim Koffler in 1930. Freud was asked, as a prominent Jewish intellectual, to support a petition condemning the Arab riots of 1929, where more than a hundred Jewish settlers were killed. Here is his reply in its entirety:

Letter to the Keren Hajessod (Dr. Chaim Koffler)

Vienna: 26 February 1930

Dear Sir,

I cannot do as you wish. I am unable to overcome my aversion to burdening the public with my name, and even the present critical time does not seem to me to warrant it. Whoever wants to influence the masses must give them something rousing and inflammatory and my sober judgement of Zionism does not permit this. I certainly sympathise with its goals, am proud of our University in Jerusalem and am delighted with our settlement’s prosperity. But, on the other hand, I do not think that Palestine could ever become a Jewish state, nor that the Christian and Islamic worlds would ever be prepared to have their holy places under Jewish care. It would have seemed more sensible to me to establish a Jewish homeland on a less historically-burdened land. But I know that such a rational viewpoint would never have gained the enthusiasm of the masses and the financial support of the wealthy. I concede with sorrow that the baseless fanaticism of our people is in part to be blamed for the awakening of Arab distrust. I can raise no sympathy at all for the misdirected piety which transforms a piece of a Herodian wall into a national relic, thereby offending the feelings of the natives.

Now judge for yourself whether I, with such a critical point of view, am the right person to come forward as the solace of a people deluded by unjustified hope.

Your obedient servant,

Freud21

Erich Fromm, the eminent scholar and author, also argued that the Arabs in Israel had a much more legitimate claim to ownership of the land than the Jews. Fromm wrote:

The claim of the Jews to the Land of Israel cannot be a realistic political claim. If all nations would suddenly claim territories in which their forefathers lived two thousand years ago, this world would be a madhouse.22

Albert Einstein made a presentation to the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry, which was examining the Palestine issue in January 1946 and argued against the creation of a “Jewish State.”23

Here is a quote from Einstein’s testimony before Judge Hutcheson, the American Chairman of the Committee:

Judge Hutcheson: It has been told to our committee by the Zionists that the passionate heart of every Jew will never be satisfied until they have a Jewish state in Palestine. It is contended, I suppose, that they must have a majority over the Arabs. It has been told to us by the Arab representatives that the Arabs are not going to permit such condition as that, they they [sic] will not permit having themselves converted from a majority to a minority.

Dr. Einstein: Yes.

Judge Hutcheson: I have asked these various persons if it is essential to the right or the privilege of the Jews to go to Palestine, if it is essential to real Zionism that a setup be fixed so that the Jews have a Jewish state and a Jewish majority without regard to the Arab view. Do you share that point of view, or do you think the matter can be handled on any other basis?

Dr. Einstein: Yes, absolutely. The state idea is not according to my heart. I cannot understand why it is needed. It is connected with many difficulties and a narrow-mindedness. I believe it is bad.

Judge Hutcheson: Isn’t it spiritual and ethical B I do not mean this particular Zionist movement, I do not mean the idea of insisting that a Jewish state must be created B isn’t it anachronistic?

Dr. Einstein: In my opinion, yes. I am against it …23

Albert Einstein wrote in a letter to American Friends of the Fighters for the Freedom of Israel shortly after the 1948 Deir Yassin massacre and referred to the Irgun, led by Menachem Begin later a Prime Minister of Israel, and the Stern Gang, where Yitzhak Shamir also a future Prime Minister of Israel was a member, as “terrorist organizations” and refused to support these “misled and criminal people.”24

Albert Einstein, Sidney Hook, Hannah Arendt and twenty-five other prominent Jews, in a letter to The New York Times (December 4, 1948), condemned Menachem Begin’s and Yitzhak Shamir’s Likud party as “fascist” and espousing “an admixture of ultra-nationalism, religious mysticism and racial superiority.”25

In 1950 Einstein published the following statement on the question of Zionism. This speech was originally given to the National Labor Committee for Palestine, in New York, on April 17, 1938 but republished by Einstein after Israel’s creation.

I should much rather see reasonable agreement with the Arabs on the basis of living together in peace than the creation of a Jewish state. Apart from the practical considerations, my awareness of the essential nature of Judaism resists the idea of a Jewish state with borders, an army, and a measure of temporal power no matter how modest. I am afraid of the inner damage Judaism will sustain — especially from the development of a narrow nationalism within our own ranks, against which we have already had to fight without a Jewish state.26

Einstein also turned down the presidency of the state of Israel.27 In Albert Einstein: A Biography (Viking, 1997), Albrecht Folsing shares the following revelation about the offer to Einstein to become Israel’s second president: “While Ben-Gurion was awaiting Einstein’s decision, he asked his assistant, the future president Yitzak Navon, over a cup of coffee: ‘Tell me what to do if he says yes! I have had to offer the post to him because it’s impossible not to. But if he accepts we’re in for trouble.’”28

Einstein wrote to his stepdaughter Margot after declining the presidency of Israel. He said, “If I were to be president, sometime I would have to say to the Israeli people things they would not like to hear.”29

Einstein participated in the Sixteenth Zionist Congress in 1929. The World Zionist Organization (WZ0) mentioned and described Einstein in a document published in 1997. It is rather revealing and WZO ought to know who was and who was not a Zionist.

The Sixteenth Zionist Congress (1929) decided on the establishment of the Jewish Agency for Israel, which would be a joint body of the World Zionist Organization and those known as “non-Zionists” in the belief that all Jews wished to participate in building the National Home. Upon conclusion of the Congress, Board of the Jewish Agency convened. Of its 224 members, 112 were Zionists (members of the World Zionist Organization) including Prof. Chaim Weizmann who was elected as President of the Jewish Agency, Nahum Sokolow, Menahem Ussishkin, Shemaryahu Levin, David Ben-Gurion, Rabbi Uziel; the 112 “non-Zionist” members included Louis Marshall, Shalom Asch, Albert Einstein, Leon Blum, and members of the Rothschild family.30

There is some controversy over Einstein’s political views. Many Zionists claim Einstein as one of their own. Einstein, however, was a pacifist, a universalist and abhorred nationalism.31 To quote one commentator: “Einstein’s opposition to Israel was widely known and reported on during his life. In fact, the myth of Einstein’s support of Israel was born the day after Einstein’s death in his obituary in the New York Times, which shamelessly wrote that he “championed” the establishment of the Jewish state. This contradicted decades of reporting from the “Paper of Record.” Jerome provides some examples, including a 1930 article headlined “Einstein attacks British Zion Policy,” a 1938 article stating Einstein was “Against Palestine State” and a 1946 article stating Einstein “Bars Jewish State.”32

Einstein was not alone in his concerns over political Zionism and the creation of a “Jewish State.”

In 1943 American Council for Judaism (ACJ) was formed by a group of 92 Reform rabbis, and many other prominent American Jews with the express intent of opposing Zionism. The Council’s membership included some of the most prominent members of the American Jewish community. Lessing J. Rosenwald, the former chairman of the Sears, Roebuck & Company became president. Other active members included Rabbi Morris S. Lazaron of Baltimore; Arthur Hays Sulzberger, publisher of the New York Times and Sidney Wallach of the American Jewish Committee. Rabbi Elmer Berger became its executive director.33

The American Council for Judaism was created in part as a response to a 1942 United States Zionist Conference which called for the formation of a Jewish army in Palestine. The ACJ sent letters to governments and officials expressing their objection to such a notion as a “Jewish State.” They argued, “Jewish nationalism tends to confuse our fellowman about our place and function in society and diverts our own attention from our historic role to live as a religious community wherever we may dwell.”34

A pamphlet published by the ACJ in 1944 titled “Palestine” stated as follows: “…the concept of a theocratic state is long past. It is an anachronism. The concept of a racial state “the Hitlerian concept” is repugnant to the civilized world, as witness the fearful global war in which we are involved.”35

Membership in the ACJ grew to more than 15,000. Its members were very vocal and greatly angered the Zionist leadership who wanted the American Jewish community to present a united position on the Palestine question. Thomas A. Kolsky has authored a book, Jews Against Zionism: The American Council for Judaism 1942-1948, which is a history of the anti-Zionist American Council for Judaism in the period just before the creation of the “Jewish State.”36

The New York Times wrote also an anti-Zionist editorial in January, 1942 supporting the views held by the American Council for Judaism. Tom Segev, a veteran Israeli journalist writes the following about the venerable “Paper of Record” editorial:

On January 22, 1942, the New York Times ran an editorial that rejected the establishment of a Jewish state in the Land of Israel. The immediate context was the idea of forming a Jewish brigade within the British Army. The Times based its objection, among other things, on the assumption that Jews did not need a state of their own, because once the Allies achieved a victory, they would be citizens with equal rights in their countries of residence, in accordance with the Atlantic Charter signed by the United States and Britain in August 1941. Hopes for a Jewish homeland would be fulfilled, the Times wrote, by “the winning of a new world in which Jews along with other religious and national minorities may live peacefully and happily in every nation, enjoying the full rights of other citizens.”37

Here is a lament on the formation of Israel and the impact of its creation written in 1954 by Henry Hurwitz editor of The Menorah Journal:

Surely the liberals of Israel will now lift up their voices? Small as you numbers may be today, it is upon you mostly that the honor and worthiness of the State must rest. The question is no longer whether the State is to exist. The question is what kind of State it will turn out to be.

What a paradox is here! In all the countries of the West Jews have been and continue to be in the forefront of liberalism. There have been myriads like Heine, soldiers and leaders in all of the struggles for intellectual and spiritual liberation. This contribution of ours to Western civilization is one of the glories of the ‘Diaspora.’ Yet when Jews have gotten a chance to run a State of their own, look at it! All cant aside, can anyone really affirm it to be ‘the Switzerland of the Middle East’? We rub our eyes, some of us who were life long Zionists, and we hang our heads in shame. No, we must speak with frankness: this present Israel is not what we dreamed and hoped for and worked for, we who followed Herzl or Ahad Ha’Am, Brandeis or Weizmann.38

Isaac Asimov was one of the greatest writers of the Twentieth Century and wrote on many topics. He expressed his views about Zionism in a number of pieces. One example is found in the second volume of his autobiography In Joy Still Felt. Asimov tells of having dinner in 1959 with some friends and his wife:

As usual, I found myself in the odd position of not being a Zionist and of not particularly valuing my Jewish heritage … I just think it is more important to be human and to have a human heritage; and I think it is wrong for anyone to feel that there is anything special about any one heritage of whatever kind. It is delightful to have the human heritage exist in a thousand varieties, for it makes for greater interest, but as soon as one variety is thought to be more important than another, the groundwork is laid for destroying them all.39

Asimov also commented on Zionism in a chapter titled “Anti-Semitism” in I. Asimov, his third autobiographical volume. There, Asimov discussed how he was distressed by the capability of the historically oppressed (such as the Jews) to in turn become oppressors if given the chance. Asimov wrote: “Right now, there is an influx of Soviet Jews into Israel. They are fleeing because they expect religious persecution. Yet at the instant their feet touched Israeli soil, they became extreme Israeli nationalists with no pity for the Palestinians. From persecuted to persecutors in the blinking of an eye.”40

I. F. Stone, the award-winning American Jewish journalist, who died in 1989, wrote: “… Israel is creating a kind of moral schizophrenia in world Jewry. In the outside world the welfare of Jewry depends on the maintenance of secular, non-racial, pluralistic societies. In Israel, Jewry finds itself defending a society in which mixed marriages cannot be legalized, in which the ideal is racial and exclusionist. Jews might fight elsewhere for their very security and existence — against principles and practices they find themselves defending in Israel.”41

The late U.S. Senator Paul Wellstone was an active supporter of Rabbi Michael Lerner’s Tikkun organization and a supporter of progressive causes. He also opposed the American invasion of Iraq.42 Senator Wellstone was a liberal Zionist and a supporter of Israel. However, he also was a strong supporter of peace between Israelis and Palestinians. Here are the words of one Arab commentator describing Senator Wellstone after his tragic death in an air plane crash: “Paul Wellstone was an American and a Jew who had the courage and the dignity to befriend the Arab American community when it was less popular to do so. He also was a genuine friend of justice and peace in Israel and Palestine and spoke and voted often and courageously on the side of justice.”43 Here are some selected excerpts from a speech Wellstone gave in 2002.

….Engagement remains the only intelligent option for our country now. We must pursue a courageous approach which seeks both to meet the critical need of the Israeli people to be free from terrorism and violence, and acknowledges the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people for their own state, a state which is economically and politically viable. Even in this horrific time, we must not lose sight of what should be our ultimate goal: Israel and a new Palestinian state living side-by-side, in peace, with secure borders …

Israel must show a respect for and concern about the human rights and dignity of the Palestinian people who are now and will continue to be their neighbors. It is critically important to distinguish between the terrorists and ordinary, innocent Palestinians who are trying to provide for their families and live an otherwise normal existence. Palestinians must no longer be subjected to the daily, often humiliating reminders that they lack basic freedom and control over their lives …

Both sides will need to make painful choices if there is to be a just and stable peace. There must be a recognition of the tragic Palestinian refugee experience, and also an understanding that not all Palestinian refugees will be able to return to Israel. Many observers believe that the parties will eventually need to agree on a formula which would allow some refugees to return to Israel, and then provide for resettlement, and financial compensation for the remainder.44

There is a long distinguished line of Jewish critics of Zionism and Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. This list includes prominent French politician Silvain Levi,45 renown political philosopher Hannah Arendt,46 leading German poet Erich Fried,47 eminent academic and expert on nationalism Hans Kohn,48 former Chancellor of Austria Bruno Kreisky,49 Rabbi Elmer Berger the founding Executive Director of the American Council for Judaism,50 Jack Bernstein author;51 Moshe Menuhin,52 and his son world renown violinist and conductor, Yehudi Menuhin;53 prolific writer Alfred Lilienthal,54 and French political science professor and author Maxine Rodinson.55

In 1982 after Israel launched its invasion of Lebanon Mark Bruzonsky authored what came to be known as “The Paris Declaration” which was published on page 1 of Le Monde on July 2, 1982. This historic statement was signed by Nahum Goldmann, former head of the World Zionist Organization, Philip Klutznick, former U.S. Secretary of Commerce and President of both the World Jewish Congress and B’nai B’rith International, and Pierre Mendes-France, former Prime Minister of France “three of the world’s most senior and respected Jewish leaders at the time.”

The Paris Declaration called for a halt to Israel’s invasion of Lebanon and for direct negotiations between the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Israel. The PLO is now recognized around the World as the “official representative of the Palestinian people.” However, this call for recognition of the PLO was considered a major development at the time. The text of this Declaration read as follows:

The Paris Declaration

Le Monde diplomatique, July 2, 1982.

Peace need not be made between friends, but between enemies who have struggled and suffered. Our sense of Jewish history and the moral imperatives of this moment require us to insist that the time is urgent for mutual recognition between Israel and the Palestinian people. There must be a stop to the sterile debate, whereby the Arab world challenges the existence of Israel and Jews challenge the political legitimacy of the Palestinian fight for independence.

The real issue is not whether the Palestinians are entitled to their rights, but how to bring this about while ensuring Israel’s security and regional stability. Ambiguous concepts such as “autonomy” are no longer sufficient, for they too often are used to confuse rather than to clarify. Needed now is the determination to reach a political accommodation between Israeli and Palestinian nationalism.

The war in Lebanon must stop. Israel must lift it’s siege of Beirut in order to facilitate negotiations with the PLO, leading to a political settlement. Mutual recognition must be vigorously pursued. And there should be negotiations with the aim of achieving coexistence between the Israeli and Palestinian peoples based on self-determination.56

Immanuel Wallerstein, is Senior Research Scholar at Yale University, and is the author of The Decline of American Power: The U.S. in a Chaotic World (New Press). He is a highly respected American Jewish academic and made the following comments on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

What the Israeli governments do not realize is that neither Hamas nor Hizbullah need Israel. It is Israel that needs them, and needs them desperately. If Israel wants not to become a Crusader state that is in the end extinguished, it is only Hamas and Hizbullah that can guarantee the survival of Israel. It is only when Israel is able to come to terms with them, as the deeply-rooted spokespersons of Palestinian and Arab nationalism, that Israel can live in peace.

Achieving a stable peace settlement will be extremely difficult. But the pillars of Israel’s present strategy — its own military strength and the unconditional support of the United States — constitute a very thin reed. Its military advantage is diminishing and will diminish steadily in the years to come. And in the post-Iraqi years, the United States may well drop Israel in the same way that France did in the 1960s.

Israel’s only real guarantee will be that of the Palestinians. And to get this guarantee, Israel will need to rethink fundamentally its strategy for survival.57

Wallerstein also made the following comment on Israel shortly after the 2008 Israeli attack on Gaza.

Now, Israel has invaded Gaza, seeking to destroy Hamas. If it succeeds, what organization will come next? If, as is more probable, it fails to destroy Hamas, is a two-state solution now possible? Both Palestinian and world public opinion is moving towards the one-state solution. And this is of course the end of the Zionist project.

The three-element strategy of Israel is decomposing. The iron fist no longer succeeds, much as it didn’t for George Bush in Iraq. Will the United States link remain firm? I doubt it. And will world public opinion continue to look sympathetically on Israel? It seems not. Can Israel now switch to an alternative strategy, of negotiating with the militant representatives of the Arab Palestinians, as an integral constituent of the Middle East, and not as an outpost of Europe? It seems quite late for that, quite possibly too late. Hence, the chronicle of a suicide foretold.58

Here is another rare moment of candor published in the Washington Post in an article written by columnist Richard Cohen.

The greatest mistake Israel could make at the moment is to forget that Israel itself is a mistake. It is an honest mistake, a well-intentioned mistake, a mistake for which no one is culpable, but the idea of creating a nation of European Jews in an area of Arab Muslims (and some Christians) has produced a century of warfare and terrorism of the sort we are seeing now. Israel fights Hezbollah in the north and Hamas in the south, but its most formidable enemy is history itself.59

Here is another set of critical views from Time magazine correspondent Joe Klein. Due to his criticism of Neocons support of the attack on Iraq and for their unwavering support for the Israeli right he was called an anti-Semite. Here is his commentary on his Time Magazine blog:

Then, what can one say about Jennifer Rubin, who accuses me of antisemitism? I must say that’s rather thrilling coming from the Commentary crowd. You want evidence of divided loyalties? How about the “benign domino theory” that so many Jewish neoconservatives talked to me about–off the record, of course–in the runup to the Iraq war, the idea that Israel’s security could be won by taking out Saddam, which would set off a cascade of disaster for Israel’s enemies in the region? As my grandmother would say, feh! Do you actually deny that the casus belli that dare not speak its name wasn’t, as I wrote in February 2003, a desire to make the world safe for Israel? Why the rush now to bomb Iran, a country that poses some threat to Israel but none–for the moment–to the United States . . . unless we go ahead, attack it, and the mullahs unleash Hezbollah terrorists against us? Do you really believe the mullahs would stage a nuclear attack on Israel, destroying the third most holy site in Islam and killing untold numbers of Muslims? I am not ruling out the use of force against Iran–it may come to that–but you folks seem to embrace it gleefully.

Furthermore, as a Jew, I find it offensive that the American Jewish Committee would support such an ideologically unbalanced publication as Commentary, one that spouts a Likudnik bellicosity that is out of sync with the beliefs of the vast majority of American Jews. A question to all concerned: When was the last time you opposed a policy, any policy, of the Israeli government–other than one that attempted to move toward peace?

And finally, if the Iraqi government is so wonderful, why was I advised not to carry a passport without [sic] Israeli stamps in it when I applied for my Iraqi visa?

Update and Correction: The American Jewish Committee is no longer associated with Commentary, thank God.60

Here is Klein’s second entry on the same subject:

I have now been called antisemitic and intellectually unstable and a whole bunch of other silly things by the folks over at the Commentary blog. They want Time Magazine to fire or silence me. This is happening because I said something that is palpably true, but unspoken in polite society: There is a small group of Jewish neoconservatives who unsuccessfully tried to get Benjamin Netanyahu to attack Saddam Hussein in the 1990s, and then successfully helped provide the intellectual rationale for George Bush to do it in 2003. Their motivations involve a confused conflation of what they think are Israel’s best interests with those of the United States. They are now leading the charge for war with Iran.

Happily, these people represent a very small sliver of the Jewish population in this country. Unhappily, their views have had an impact in the highest reaches of the Bush Administration–and seem to have an influence on John McCain’s campaign as well. Happily, the Bush Administration seems more interested in talking to the Iranians than in launching on them–and, according to my Israeli friends, the Israelis are not going to do anything foolish, either. I remain proud of my Jewish heritage, a strong supporter of Israel and a realist about the slim chance of finding some common ground with the Iranians. But I am not willing to grant these ideologues the anonymity they seek.

In early 2003, during my first weeks as a Time Magazine columnist, I wrote a handful of skeptical columns about the coming war in Iraq, including this one about Israel’s security as a hidden casus belli. Then, with the troops in place and the war about to begin, I said something stupid on Tim Russert’s cable TV show–reluctantly saying ok, we should proceed with the attack. It was the only statement I made in favor of the war and I quickly came to my senses–but that’s no excuse. We have lost more than 4000 Americans, tens of thousands have come home grievously injured, hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have been killed and wounded, and we are weaker, palpably and morally, as a result.

I am not going to make the same mistake twice. I don’t think a war with Iran is coming, thank God, but this time I am not going to pull any punches. My voice isn’t very important in the grand scheme of things, but I’m going to do my job–and that means letting you know exactly where I stand and what I believe. I believe there are a small group of Jewish neoconservatives who are pushing for war with Iran because they believe it is in America’s long-term interests and because they believe Israel’s existence is at stake. They are wrong and recent history tells us they are dangerous. They are also bullies and I’m not going to be intimidated by them.61

New York Times columnist Roger Cohen also wrote an interesting expose on the situation of Iranian Jews that was largely opposite to the image of “oppression and persecution” that the Zionist lobby was presenting on the Jews of Iran. One of the more salient comments made by Cohen was “the basing of Middle Eastern policy on the construction of imaginary worlds — has led nowhere.”62 He also wrote:

Perhaps I have a bias toward facts over words, but I say the reality of Iranian civility toward Jews tells us more about Iran “its sophistication and culture” than all the inflammatory rhetoric.

That may be because I’m a Jew and have seldom been treated with such consistent warmth as in Iran. Or perhaps I was impressed that the fury over Gaza, trumpeted on posters and Iranian TV, never spilled over into insults or violence toward Jews. Or perhaps it’s because I’m convinced the “Mad Mullah” caricature of Iran and likening of any compromise with it to Munich 1938 — a position popular in some American Jewish circles — is misleading and dangerous.62

Richard Falk, who is Jewish, is the UN special rapporteur on human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. He is professor emeritus of international law at Princeton University and the author of more than 50 books on war, human rights and international law.63 In a statement issued by the UN, “Gaza: Silence Is Not An Option,” he called Israeli policies in the Occupied Territories “a crime against humanity.” Falk also has compared Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians to the Nazi treatment of the Jews. On December 15, 2008 Professor Falk was denied entry into Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories by the Israeli government.64 Professor Falk has said, “I think the Palestinians stand out as the most victimized people in the world.”

I think that my life’s work in a sense has been associated with helping or identifying with those who are victims of injustice. If we look at the world today, there are many victims of injustice. But I think the Palestinians stand out as the most victimized people in the world. And symbolically, their struggle is one that engages people of conscience everywhere in the world in a manner that resembles the way the anti-apartheid movement worked effectively to undermine South Africa’s claims of sovereignty and legitimacy. And I hope that this small role that I play contributes to that kind of process on behalf of the Palestinians.65

Richard Falk also had an article, “Israel’s war crimes,” published in Le Monde diplomatique‘s English edition in March 2009. Here is an excerpt:

In the end, the haunting question is whether the war crimes concerns raised by Israel’s behaviour in Gaza matters, and if so, how. I believe it matters greatly in what might be called “the second war” — the legitimacy war that often ends up shaping the political outcome more than battlefield results. The US won every battle in the Vietnam war and lost the war; the same with France in Indochina and Algeria, and the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. The Shah of Iran collapsed, as did the apartheid regime in South Africa, because of defeats in the legitimacy war.

It is my view that this surfacing of criminal charges against Israel during and after its attacks on Gaza resulted in major gains on the legitimacy front for the Palestinians. The widespread popular perceptions of Israeli criminality, especially the sense of waging war against a defenceless population with modern weaponry, has prompted people around the world to propose boycotts, divestments and sanctions. This mobilisation exerts pressure on governments and corporations to desist from relations with Israel, and is reminiscent of the worldwide anti-apartheid campaign that did so much to alter the political landscape in South Africa. Winning the legitimacy war is no guarantee that Palestinian self-determination will be achieved in the coming years. But it does change the political equation in ways that are not fully discernible at this time.66

There also is a most interesting perspective from another prominent Jewish academic, Gabriel Kolko, on the question of Zionism and the founding of the “Jewish State.” Kolko is considered one of the leading historians on modern warfare. He is the author of the classic Century of War: Politics, Conflicts and Society Since 1914, Another Century of War? and The Age of War: the US Confronts the World. He has also written a highly acclaimed history of the Vietnam War, Anatomy of a War: Vietnam, the US and the Modern Historical Experience. His latest book is World in Crisis, from which this quotation has been excerpted.

The result of the creation of a state called Israel was abysmal. Jews from Poland have nothing in common with Germans and neither has anything to do with those from the Arab world. It is nationality, not religion, that counts most. Jews in Israel, especially the Germans, largely ghettoized themselves by their place of origin during the first generation, when a militarized culture produced the mixed new breed called sabras — an essentially anti-intellectual personality far different from the one the early Zionists, who were mostly socialists who preached the nobility of labor, expected to emerge. The large majority of Israelis are not in the least Jewish in the cultural sense, are scarcely socialist in any sense, and daily life and the way people live is no different in Israel than it is in Chicago or Amsterdam. There is simply no rational reason that justifies the state’s creation.

The outcome is a small state with a military ethos that pervades all aspects of Israel’s culture, its politics and, above all, its response to the existence of Arabs in its midst and at its borders. From its inception, the ideology of the early Zionists — of Labor Zionism as well as the rightist Revisionism that Vladimir Jabotinsky produced — embodied a commitment to violence, erroneously called self-defense, and a virtual hysteria. As a transcendent idea, Zionism has no validity because the national differences between Jews are overwhelming.67

Here are the comments of Bruce Jackson, another American Jewish academic, on the stereotype that all Jews think alike on the question of Israel. Professor Jackson writes, “They’re spreading poison about American Jews. Many of the people spreading this poison are Jews themselves, a relatively small group that wants to convince everybody (or at least everybody in power) that the great bulk of us think the way they do, which we don’t.”68 He continues:

There is an ever-growing number of organizations of American Jews trying to get the word out that the press and politicians should look beyond the noisy minority. (Just glance at the web sites of Jewish Voices for Peace, Jews for Peace in Palestine and Israel, Not in My Name, Jews Against the Occupation and Brit Tzedik v’Shalom.) Thus far, they seem to have made little impact. Their activities get almost no coverage in the press and few members of Congress consider them the same kind of threat as the militant right or the neocons.

Perhaps they have been too polite. Perhaps they will have to start making the same kind of noise that has frightened Chuck Schumer and so many powerful people in Washington. Perhaps they will have to remind those politicians that they also vote and write checks, and that of all the things you can accuse us Jews of there is at least one that is true: we remember.68

Here is what Murray Polner, another American Jewish commentator, has to say about the diversity of political views of American Jews on Middle East issues:

Back in the 1980s the major American Jewish welfare organization adopted as its fundraising slogan “We are One.” The implication was that American Jews were a united bloc. But we are not “one” and never have been. Ideologically, we are everything from anarchists to Zionists, working people to the gilded rich. Noam Chomsky is as Jewish as Irving Kristol, and Norman Finkelstein as Jewish as Alan Dershowitz. We are neither angels nor saints. And we are certainly not monolithic, despite perennial efforts to paint anyone critical of various aspects of Israeli policies as “self-hating” Jews …

American Jewish peace voices do not genuflect before the Israel Lobby. See, for example, Brit Tzedek v’Shalom — the Jewish Peace Alliance for Justice and Peace — which is said to have more than 15,000 members, the Jewish Voice for Peace, and Meretz USA an affiliate of Israel’s Meretz bloc; Americans for Peace Now, which reportedly has 25,000 members, Rabbis for Human Rights, the Jewish Peace Fellowship, and the Shalom Center. Prolific writers abound too: Rabbis Arthur Waskow of the Shalom Center, Michael Lerner of Tikkun magazine and Henry Siegman, former head of the American Jewish Congress when it was still liberal and now President of the U.S./ Middle East Project, Michael Massing at the New York Review of Books, Tony Karon, Philip Weiss, Norman Birnbaum, and many more who will never be silent.69

Tony Judt, one of the leading Jewish thinkers and academics of our time and University Professor at New York University and director of the Remarque Institute, has addressed what some consider a contradiction in Zionism and its relationship with the Jewish People. In an article published in the respected Financial Times he writes:

What exactly is “Zionism”? Its core claim was always that Jews represent a common and single people; that their millennia-long dispersion and suffering has done nothing to diminish their distinctive, collective attributes; and that the only way they can live freely as Jews — in the same way that, say, Swedes live freely as Swedes — is to dwell in a Jewish state.

Thus religion ceased in Zionist eyes to be the primary measure of Jewish identity. In the course of the late-19th century, as more and more young Jews were legally or culturally emancipated from the world of the ghetto or the shtetl, Zionism began to look to an influential minority like the only alternative to persecution, assimilation or cultural dilution. Paradoxically then, as religious separatism and practice began to retreat, a secular version of it was actively promoted.

I can certainly confirm, from personal experience, that anti-religious sentiment — often of an intensity that I found discomforting — was widespread in left-leaning Israeli circles of the 1960s. Religion, I was informed, was for the haredim and the “crazies” of Jerusalem’s Mea Sharim quarter. “We” are modern and rational and “western”, it was explained to me by my Zionist teachers. But what they did not say was that the Israel they wished me to join was therefore grounded, and could only be grounded, in an ethnically rigid view of Jews and Jewishness…

…Israel’s survival does not rest on the credibility of the story it tells about its ethnic origins. If we accept this, we can begin to understand that the country’s insistence upon its exclusive claim upon Jewish identity is a significant handicap. In the first place, such an insistence reduces all non-Jewish Israeli citizens and residents to second-class status. This would be true even if the distinction were purely formal. But of course it is not: being a Muslim or a Christian — or even a Jew who does not meet the increasingly rigid specification for “Jewishness” in today’s Israel — carries a price.70

Professor Judt’s conclusion and recommendation:

My own inclination, then, would be to focus elsewhere. If the Jews of Europe and North America took their distance from Israel (as many have begun to do), the assertion that Israel was “their” state would take on an absurd air. Over time, even Washington might come to see the futility of attaching American foreign policy to the delusions of one small Middle Eastern state. This, I believe, is the best thing that could possibly happen to Israel itself. It would be obliged to acknowledge its limits. It would have to make other friends, preferably among its neighbours.

We could thus hope, in time, to establish a natural distinction between people who happen to be Jews but are citizens of other countries; and people who are Israeli citizens and happen to be Jews. This could prove very helpful. There are many precedents: the Greek, Armenian, Ukrainian and Irish diasporas have all played an unhealthy role in perpetuating ethnic exclusivism and nationalist prejudice in the countries of their forebears. The civil war in Northern Ireland came to an end in part because an American president instructed the Irish emigrant community in the US to stop sending arms and cash to the Provisional IRA. If American Jews stopped associating their fate with Israel and used their charitable cheques for better purposes, something similar might happen in the Middle East.71

One important Jewish organization is Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP). It was founded in 1996. JVP is “a national grassroots peace organization dedicated to promoting an US foreign policy in the Middle East based on peace, democracy, human rights and respect for international law. With some 85,000 supporters and members, JVP’s board of Jewish American and Israeli advisors includes Pulitzer and Tony award winner Tony Kushner, actor Ed Asner, poet Adrienne Rich, historian Howard Zinn, singer Ronnie Gilbert as well as other respected rabbis, artists, scholars and activists.”

A United Nations fact-finding mission, headed by Judge Richard Goldstone and whose report was released on September 16, 2009, investigated the Israeli attack on Gaza that was launched on December 27, 2008. It found that Israel, “punished and terrorized” civilians in its three-week assault on Gaza … and cited strong evidence that Israeli forces committed “grave breaches” of the Geneva Conventions. The casualties included more than 1,400 Palestinians, about a third of them women and children, only thirteen Israelis died in the hostilities.72

The 575-page UN report came at the end of a six-month inquiry and was based on dozens of interviews and investigations. Judge Richard Goldstone, the former chief prosecutor of the international courts for Yugoslavia and Rwanda headed the Inquiry. Judge Goldstone found that Israel deliberately attacked civilians and failed to take precautions to minimize loss of civilian life.

We came to the conclusion, on the basis of the facts we found, that there is strong evidence to establish that numerous serious violations of international law, both humanitarian law and human rights law, were committed by Israel during the military operations in Gaza. The mission concluded that actions amounting to war crimes and possibly, in some respects, crimes against humanity were committed by the Israel Defense Force.73

In Judge Goldstone’s own words in an Op-Ed published in the New York Times:

Pursuing justice in this case is essential because no state or armed group should be above the law. Western governments in particular face a challenge because they have pushed for accountability in places like Darfur, but now must do the same with Israel, an ally and a democratic state.

Failing to pursue justice for serious violations during the fighting will have a deeply corrosive effect on international justice, and reveal an unacceptable hypocrisy. As a service to the hundreds of civilians who needlessly died and for the equal application of international justice, the perpetrators of serious violations must be held to account.74

According to the Israeli daily Haaretz, Judge Richard Goldstone, believes bringing war criminals to justice stems from the lessons of the Holocaust. He delivered a lecture in 2000 at Jerusalem’s Yakar: Center for Tradition and Creativity. The lecture was attended by former Supreme Court president Aharon Barak. The Israeli jurist introduced Goldstone as “a dear friend” with “very deep ties to Israel.” Goldstone, in turn, said Barak was his hero and inspiration.75

In the Jerusalem lecture, concerning international efforts to bring war criminals to justice, Goldstone said the Holocaust was “the worst war crime in the world.” The Judge said “the perception of war crimes against humanity should resonate differently to Jewish ears, in light of how the Holocaust shaped conventions relevant to the subject.” Goldstone added that as a jurist, he “viewed the Holocaust as a unique occurrence because of how it affected judicial protocol on war, as well as international and humanitarian judicial approaches.” He also said that, “The laws that had been in place before the Holocaust were not equipped to deal with crimes of the Holocaust’s scale and therefore sought to define a new crime, which they labeled a crime against humanity.”75

In many respects the criticism that Judge Goldstone’s report leveled at Israel was unexpected. When Goldstone was appointed in April, 2009 to lead a United Nations inquiry into Israel’s war in Gaza, some initial reports noted with approval his Jewish background and his strong ties to Israel. The Jewish Telegraphic Agency pointed out that he was a governor of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Others reported that the judge’s daughter speaks fluent Hebrew and had lived in Israel for a number of years.

With the publication, however, of Judge Goldstone’s report, which was highly critical of Israel and Hamas, the tone changed. The internet filled up with lurid denunciations of him as a “self-hating Jew” who “should go back to South Africa.”76 Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government had refused to co-operate with the UN Inquiry, dismissed the report as a “kangaroo court.”77 These were harsh words for the judicial findings of one of the world’s most celebrated jurists.

In the early 1990s Judge Goldstone led the investigation into the misdeeds of the South African security forces that many expected to be a whitewash of the crimes committed under the Apartheid regime. However, the thoroughness and even handedness of his investigation helped smooth the transition from an apartheid state to democracy.

On Operation Cast Lead, the Israel code name for the attack on Gaza, Goldstone concluded that Israeli officers should face “individual criminal responsibility” for breaches of the laws of war. The Inquiry also found that there was a “systematic” Israeli policy of destroying food supply installations, water sanitation systems, concrete factories and homes in order to “make the daily process of living, and dignified living, more difficult for the civilian population.” Goldstone wrote that Israel’s virtual blockade of the Gaza Strip, allowing in only the minimum necessary to sustain life, was “collective punishment intentionally inflicted.”78 More than a few Jewish intellectuals and writers supported Judge Goldstone Commission’s findings.79

Another prominent American Jew with Jewish establishment credentials, Henry Siegman, has warned that “Israel has crossed the threshold from ‘the only democracy in the Middle East’ to the only apartheid regime in the Western world.” Siegman is the director of the U.S./Middle East Project in New York, and in 2010 was visiting research professor at the Sir Joseph Hotung Middle East Program, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. He is a former national director of the American Jewish Congress and of the Synagogue Council of America. He writes:

Israel’s relentless drive to establish “facts on the ground” in the occupied West Bank, a drive that continues in violation of even the limited settlement freeze to which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu committed himself, seems finally to have succeeded in locking in the irreversibility of its colonial project. As a result of that “achievement,” one that successive Israeli governments have long sought in order to preclude the possibility of a two-state solution, Israel has crossed the threshold from “the only democracy in the Middle East” to the only apartheid regime in the Western world.

The inevitability of such a transformation has been held out not by “Israel bashers” but by the country’s own leaders. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon referred to that danger, as did Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who warned that Israel could not escape turning into an apartheid state if it did not relinquish “almost all the territories, if not all,” including the Arab parts of East Jerusalem.80

At the present time the Dean of American anti-Zionist Jews is Dr. Norton Mezvinsky. He currently is the executive director of the International Council for Middle East Studies, a new academic-political think tank, in Washington, D.C. He was Professor of History at Connecticut State University and has been appointed a Distinguished CSU University Professor by the Board of Trustees of Connecticut State University. He has recently retired after teaching History at CSU for 42 years.81 Norton Mezvinsky has written and published numerous books and articles about various aspects of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Jewish Fundamentalism in Israel, a book he wrote with Israel Shahak, has been published in four languages.82 Professor Mezvinsky wrote in 1973:

The American Jews who registered their opposition to specific policies of the Israeli government and also oppose the Zionist Jewish state concept do not all agree on state (or non-state) advocacies; most of them do, however, stand consistently for one form or another of a multi-national, democratic secular state. Elmer Berger, not one of the younger breed but rather an elder statesman among Jewish anti-Zionists, has consistently and often in profound manner, argued against an exclusivist Jewish state and for a state in which all people, Arabs as well as Jews, as well as others, have equal rights and equal opportunities. Not a socialist, Berger takes the cornerstones of his position largely from classical Reform Judaic theology and from the American constitutional system. Berger has in some of his writings and speeches attempted to show that certain negative and oppressive policies of the Israeli state, opposed by all those in the dissident camp, are best understood by seeing them within the context of an undemocratic, exclusivist, Jewish state structure.83

Noam Chomsky, MIT Emeritus Professor, has to be considered the best known American Jewish critic of Zionism and of Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians.84 Here is what Professor Chomsky writes on the December 2008 Israeli assault on Gaza:

One of the wisest voices in Israel, Uri Avnery, writes that after an Israeli military victory, “What will be seared into the consciousness of the world will be the image of Israel as a blood-stained monster, ready at any moment to commit war crimes and not prepared to abide by any moral restraints. This will have severe consequences for our long-term future, our standing in the world, our chance of achieving peace and quiet. In the end, this war is a crime against ourselves too, a crime against the State of Israel.”

There is good reason to believe that he is right. Israel is deliberately turning itself into one of the most hated countries in the world, and is also losing the allegiance of the population of the West, including younger American Jews, who are unlikely to tolerate its persistent shocking crimes for long. Decades ago, I wrote that those who call themselves “supporters of Israel” are in reality supporters of its moral degeneration and probable ultimate destruction. Regrettably, that judgment looks more and more plausible.

Meanwhile we are quietly observing a rare event in history, what the late Israeli sociologist Baruch Kimmerling called “politicide,” the murder of a nation — at our hands.85

Another prominent American Jewish critic of Zionism and Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians is Norman Finkelstein. He lost his academic position after his tenure was denied by DePaul University despite his outstanding publishing record.86 Finkelstein was the author of many books critical of Israel and Zionism.87 He is being featured in a film documentary American Radical set for release in the fall of 2009.88

Joel Kovel author of Overcoming Zionism: Creating a Single Democratic State in Israel/Palestine is also well known for his attacks on Zionism, Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians and criticisms of the Zionist Lobby.89 He is a retired medical doctor, and was Professor of Social Studies at Bard College in Annandale, N.Y until his position was terminated because of his out spoken criticism of Zionism.90

A new generation of Jewish critics of Zionism and of Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians is also rising. Joseph Glatzer is a political science major at California State University/ Northridge. He is also the president of a Students for Justice in Palestine chapter he founded at CSUN. Their first event was hosting two young female Israeli Shministim (Conscientious Objectors) on the campus. He also wrote an article for the school paper, titled, “Shut Up About The Two State Solution” where he criticized the “separate but equal” approach to the Israeli-Palestinian problem.91 Here is what Glatzer writes about his change of mind on the Palestinian issue:

The point of view I have in regards to Israel/Palestine is based on nothing more than having a conscience and knowing the difference between right and wrong. I have no connection to the Middle East: I’m not Muslim or Arab. Besides the heartbreaking reality of the plight of the Palestinian people, what else would motivate me to care as much as I do? I wasn’t always this way.

A few years ago I had a professor say that Israel made Gaza into “the biggest open-air prison in the world”. I had no idea what or where Gaza was, but he criticized Israel. I loudly protested, calling him: anti-Israel, Anti-American, and an Anti-Semite. When I later told my friend how offended I was, I claimed the professor blamed the Jews for all the problems in the world.

This was part of my experience being a knee-jerk, uncritical defender of Israel. Nobody taught me McCarthyism specifically; labeling any defense of Palestinian human rights as anti-Israel came naturally to me. It’s truly what I thought being Jewish was about.

My world was shaken by a book I read called The Israel Lobby. I learned details of Israeli actions I had never even heard of before. I always rationalized the deaths of Palestinian civilians by saying Israel had to defend itself from terrorism. It was just too bad: if the Palestinians didn’t like having their civilians killed, they should stop being terrorists. In the book I learned about “home demolitions”. Israel has demolished over 24,000 Palestinian homes since 1967, making these families homeless. What possible justification could there be for this kind of cruelty? I couldn’t think of any.

I wondered how this could be possible, and why no one did anything about it. I wondered how the facts of what’s going on in the Middle East could be so different from what I’ve seen in the American media my entire life. Finding out that my Orange County Right-Wing Republican fetishized ideal of Israel wasn’t what I thought it was was truly earth-shattering for me. I couldn’t believe Israel wasn’t actually the defender of democracy in the Middle East as I was raised to believe …

I never dared speak out, because I was afraid of being called an anti-Semite and being smeared. Then Israel’s massacre of Gaza in December 2008 happened. I couldn’t believe after their daily suffering and imprisonment, Israel was now bombing the entire population. White phosphorous melting the faces off children, just because they were guilty of attending a UN school. Civilians waving white flags were shot; the UN warehouse of food aid for the victims was bombed and exploded by Israel.

When I got to CSUN, I met Sara, my first Palestinian friend. Through our friendship, I learned on a personal level the suffering of her family, and how they are just desperate to live their lives in freedom. When I hear people attack Palestinians and deny their Nakba, I now take it personally. I feel it in my heart. It’s not just a statistic anymore: it’s my friend in Gaza who cries himself to sleep every night thinking about his 11 year old brother killed by Israel in January.

I finally met people who I could share my deep passion for justice in the Middle East with. Along the way, I met so many more amazing people that have each contributed something special to my life and my understanding of Islam, the Middle East, and Palestine. The bottom line is the killing has to stop. All Palestinians want is equal rights under the law.92

Other present day Jewish critics of Zionism and Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians includes Professor Don Peretz,93 journalist Eric Rouleau,94 Harvard Professor Sara Roy,95 Professor Jennifer Loewenstein,96 former Minister in the South African government Ronnie Kasrils,97 Professor Saul Landau,98 Professor Zachery Lochman,99 Professor Joel Beinin,100 Professor Ian Lustick,101 Professor Edward Herman,102 writer Stephen Lendman,103 Anthony Loewenstein,104 Professor Steven Zunes,105 Stanley Heller,106 Danny Schechter,107 Lenni Brenner,108 Jeff Blankfort,109 author and journalist Alain Gresh,110 Professor Cheryl Rubenberg,111 renown author Philip Roth,112 Professor Michael Selzer,113 Professor David Fromkin,114 Professor Emeritus in the Political Science Department at Boston University, Howard Zinn,115 author Seymour M. Hersh,116 Bob Simon, Senior CBS Foreign Correspondent117 Barry Lando, former CBS Correspondent118 Democracy Now radio host Amy Goodman,119 media critic Norman Solomon,120 writer Bennett Muraskin,121 Professor Lawrence Davidson,122 Jerome M. Segal, director of the Peace Consultancy Program at the University of Maryland’s Center for International and Security Studies,123 Professor Mark Levine,124 Rabbi Michael Lerner,125 Rabbi Brant Rosen,126 Jewish Voice for Peace activist Sydney Levy,127 Mark Braverman,128 author Phylis Bennis,129 journalist and editor David Finkel,130 Professor Mark Ellis,131 Joel Fischer, Professor University of Hawaii School of Social Work Honolulu,132 Professor Noel Ignatiev,133 Santa Barbara University of California Professor Bill Robinson,134 Allan C. Brownfeld editor of the American Council for Judaism Issues magazine,135 New York University Professor Bertrell Ollman,136 Dr. Gideon Polya, an Australian academic,137 activist and writer Ralph Schoenman,138 writer Mike Marquisee,139 Swedish activists Snorre Lindquist and Lasse Wilhelmson,140 New York Times journalist Anthony Lewis,141 journalist Robert Scheer,142 journalist and blogger Philip Weiss,143 journalist Adam Horowitz,144 blogger Richard Silverstein,145 activist and writer Tim Wise,146 State University of New York Professor Eric Alterman,147 Tsela Barr, Judith Laitman and Haley Michaels Pollack, members of Madison Friends of Jewish Voice for Peace,148 Michelle Goldberg,149 activist and writer Adrienne Weller,150 Dan Leiberman, Editor of Alternative Insight,151 Dr. Marc Sapir,152 Hannah Mermelstein,153 Anna Baltzser,154 Professor Sharon Weill,155 Professor Randall Kuhn,156 author Ben Ehrenreich,157 actor Ed Asner,158 actress Rosanne Barr,159 and many other leading Jewish activists, intellectuals and religious figures.160

COLLECTIONS OF WRITINGS ON JEWISH CRITICISM OF ZIONISM

Adam Shatz, formerly the literary editor of The Nation magazine and now an editor at the London Review of Books, has edited a book titled Prophet’s Outcast: A Century of Dissident Jewish Writing about Zionism and Israel. The book contains essays written by 24 prominent Jewish scholars and intellectuals which are very critical of Zionism and Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. These critics include Isaac Deutscher, Daniel Laazare, Ahad Ha’am, Yitzhak Epstein, Martin Buber, Leon Trotsky, Abraham Leon, Yehudi Menuhin, Ella Habiba Shohat among others.161

Another important book on this topic is Reframing Anti-Semitism: Alternative Jewish Perspectives published by the Jewish Voice for Peace. It contains articles written by 8 Jewish American writers. One of the articles is written by Judith Butler, the Maxine Elliot Professor in Rhetoric and Comparative Literature at the University of California at Berkley. Her article is on the question of whether criticism of Israel is anti-Semitic. Her answer and article is titled: “No, Its Not Anti-Semitic.”162 The other contributors to the book are Mitchell Plitnick, Henri Picciotto, Cecilie Surasky, Terry Fletcher, Laurie Polster, Penny Rosenwasser and Chuck Sher. Sher’s article is entitled “Is Criticizing Israel Anti-Semitic.” His answer is that it is not anti-Semitic.163

Another anthology that examines Jewish criticism of Zionism and Israel’s policies is Wrestling with Zion: Progressive Jewish-American Responses to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, edited by Tony Kushner and Alisa Solomon (Grove Press: New York, 2003). Kushner is an award winning playwright and Solomon a staff writer at The Village Voice and a professor at Baruch College-City of New York. This book contains a collection of 53 prominent American Jewish writers’ critical analysis of Zionism and Israel’s policies. This list includes such distinguished writers as Arthur Miller, Michael Massing, Susan Sontag, Marc Ellis, Naomi Klein (actually a Canadian) and Rabbi Arthur Waskow among many others.

There are a number of other anthologies and collections of writings from anti-Zionist Jews. These include Zionism Reconsidered, Michael Selzer ed. (London: The Macmillian Company, 1970); Zionism: The Dream and the Reality: A Jewish Critique, Gary V. Smith ed. (New York: Barnes & Noble Books, 1974); Jewish Critics of Zionism and the Stifling and Smearing of a Dissenter, by Moshe Menuhin, (Belmont, Massachusetts: Association of Arab University Graduates, 1976); Judaism or Zionism: What Difference for the Middle East?, EAFORD & AJAZ (American Jewish Alternatives to Zionism) eds., (London: Zed Books,1986); The End of Zionism and the Liberation of the Jewish People, Eibie Weizfeld ed. (Clarity Press: Atlanta, 1989); Radicals, Rabbis, and Peacemakers: Conversations with Jews Against the Occupation, Seth Faber ed. (Monroe ME: Common Courage Press, 2005).

Faber’s book contains a series of interviews with leading American dissident Jews: Noam Chomsky, Steve Quester, Joel Kovel, Norton Mezvinsky, Ora Wise, Norman Finkelstein, Phyllis Bennis, Adam Shapiro, Daniel Boyarin, Rabbi David Weiss, and includes a speech and an essay by Marc Ellis.

There are hundreds, and probably thousands, of Jewish critics of Zionism and of Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians who have published articles or written books on the subject. Yet many Zionists, and their supporters, claim that there is a near monolithic Jewish position in support of Zionism, Israel and the occupation of Palestinian land.

This claim of near universal Jewish support for the Zionist state and its actions toward the Palestinians is far from the truth. One has only to review the written record to see that there is no Jewish consensus on these issues and a great deal of criticism and outright opposition to Zionism exists in Jewish intellectual and religious circles, both in the past and today.

  1. “Introduction” by Michael Selzer in Zionism Reconsidered, edited by Michael Selzer, (London: The Macmillian Company, 1970), p. xi. This conclusion is based on Michael Selzer’s book, The Wineskin and the Wizard: The Problem of Jewish Power in the Context of East European Jewish History, (New York: Macmillian, 1970). []
  2. “Demystifying Zionism,” by Yakov M. Rabkin, Information Clearing House, October 2, 2009. []
  3. Hannah Arendt, “Zionism Reconsidered,” The Menorah Journal, Autumn 1945, reprinted in Michael Selzer, Zionism Reconsidered: The Rejection of Jewish Normalcy, (London: The Macmillan Company, 1970), p. 217. []
  4. See “Memorandum of Edwin Montagu on the Anti-Semitism of the Present (British) Government: Submitted to the British Cabinet August 1917,” reproduced in From Haven to Conquest, Walid Khalidi ed. (Beirut: The Institute for Palestine Studies, 1971), p. 143-151. []
  5. For an example of his views see “A Nation or Religious Community,” by C. G. Montefiore reprinted in Zionism Reconsidered, edited by Michael Selzer, (London: The Macmillian Company, 1970), p. 49-64. []
  6. Walter Laqueur, A History of Zionism, (New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1972), p. 400; See also Chaim Weizmann, Trial and Error, (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1949), p. 163. Also see Alfred Lilienthal, What Price Israel?, (first printed by Henry Regnery Company, 1953 reprinted by Beirut: Institute for Palestine Studies, 1969), p. 23. For an example of Wolf’s views see “The Zionist Peril,” Jewish Quarterly Review, October 1904, p. 1-25. []
  7. See “AntiSemitism,” by Hannah Arendt in The Jewish Writings edited by Jerome Kohn and Ron H. Feldman, (New York: Schocken Books, 2007), p. 46-121; and the discussion in Marc Ellis, “The Palestinian Uprising and the Future of the Jewish People” from “Towards a Jewish Theology of Liberation: The Uprising and the Future,” (1988) in Prophets Outcast: A Century of Dissident Jewish Writing about Zionism and Israel, edited by Adam Shatz, (New York: Nation Books, 2004), p. 325-342; Norman Finkelstein, The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Jewish Suffering, (New York: Verso, 2000); “…Eighteen Centuries of Jewish Suffering,” The Myths of Zionism, by John Rose (London: Pluto Press, 1984), p. 43-62; “The Politics of Anti-Semitism,” by Jeff Blankfort, Anderson Valley Advertiser, March 16, 2004; “The Spectre of Shoah,” in Overcoming Zionism, by Joel Kovel, (London: Pluto Press, 2007), p. 64-85 []
  8. “AntiSemitism,” by Hannah Arendt in The Jewish Writings, edited by Jerome Kohn and Ron H. Feldman, (New York: Schocken Books, 2007), p. 47. []
  9. “Why Orthodox Jews Are Opposed to a Zionist State,” from Neturei Karta International Jews United Against Zionism web site. []
  10. Lenni Brenner, Zionism in the Age of the Dictators, (London: Croom Helm, 1983), p. 34. []
  11. Ibid., p. 22-23. []
  12. Edward Mortimer, “Contradiction, collusion and controversy,” The Times (London), February 11, 1984. []
  13. Jews Against Zionism,” by Stephen Lendman, Dissident Voice, December 8, 2009. [] [] []
  14. “Golda Meir told Poland: Don’t send sick or disabled Jews to Israel,” by Lily Galili, Haaretz, December 9, 2009. []
  15. See, “Zionism at 100: Remembering Its Often Prophetic Jewish Critics,” by Allan C. Brownfeld, Issues, Summer 1997. []
  16. Nahum Goldmann, The Jewish Paradox, translated by Steven Cox, (London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1978), p. 77. []
  17. “Jewish Criticism of Zionism,” by Edward C. Corrigan, American-Arab Affairs (now Middle East Policy), Winter 1990-91, pp. 94-116. This article lists more than 160 Jewish critics of Zionism. See also “For American Jews, Dissent Against Israel Has Become Mainstream,” by Tony Karon, Tomdispatch.com, September 15, 2007. “Anti racist Jews against racist Zionism,” by Dr. Gideon Polya, Media With a Conscience. See also the “SHIT LIST” …7000+ Self-Hating Israel-Threatening Jews. Self-hating, Israel-Threatening, Israel-Bashing Jews are a threat to Israel. This site lists 8,000+ of the worst offenders. … The site is no longer available on the net. However, the author has a copy of the list. It was a most valuable resource for critics of Israel’s policies. For more on the S.H.I.T List see “Jews Like Us,” by Bruce Jackson, CounterPunch, April 18, 2003. []
  18. “Memo to Jews: We re in IQ freefall,” by Philip Weiss, Mondoweiss, March 10, 2009. See also “Let My Kafka Go! Israel’s Ridiculous Ownership Claims,” by Mary Rizzo, Palestine Think Tank, December 9, 2009, printed December 10, 2009. []
  19. “Kafka’s lifelong dream was to make aliyah,” by Haaretz Service, Haaretz, August 18, 2008. []
  20. “Sadness in Palestine,” by Dan Miron, Haaretz, December 10, 2008. []
  21. Letter to the Keren Hajessod (Dr. Chaim Koffler) of the Palestine Foundation Fund” (February 26, 1930), reproduced in Prophets Outcast: A Century of Dissident Jewish Writing about Zionism and Israel, ed. Adam Shatz, (New York: Nation Books, 2004), pp. 53-54. The letter can also be found at Global Research, February 25, 2008. []
  22. Jewish Newsletter (New York), May 19, 1959, cited in Marion Woolfson, Prophets in Babylon, (London: Faber and Faber, 1980), p. 13. For more of Fromm’s views see, “The Prophetic Concept of Peace,” by Erich Fromm, reprinted in Zionism the Dream and the Reality: A Jewish Critique, Gary V. Smith ed., (New York: Barnes & Noble Books, 1974), p. 304-311. []
  23. “Einstein on Israel reveals essential history of debate over Zionism and a Jewish state,” by Adam Horowitz, Mondoweiss, May 28, 2009. [] []
  24. Einstein’s Letter. []
  25. The New York Times letter is reproduced in Prophets Outcast: A Century of Dissident Jewish Writing about Zionism and Israel, edited by Adam Shatz, (New York: Nation Books, 2004), p. 65-67. []
  26. Albert Einstein, Out of My Later Years, (New York: Philosophical Library, 1950), p. 263. This speech is reproduced in Prophets Outcast: A Century of Dissident Jewish Writing about Zionism and Israel, edited by Adam Shatz (New York: Nation Books, 2004), p. 63-64. For a discussion of what Alfred Lilienthal calls the “kidnapping” of Albert Einstein by the Zionists, see Alfred Lilienthal, The Zionist Connection II, (New Brunswick, New Jersey: North American, 1982), p. 340-343. Also see Einstein on Israel and Zionism: His Provocative Ideas About the Middle East, by Fred Jerome, (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2009). []
  27. See Evan Wilson, Decision on Palestine, (Stanford, California: Hoover Institution Press, 1979), p. 27. Wilson served on the Palestine desk of the United States State Department during the time of Israel’s creation. []
  28. Albrecht Folsing, Albert Einstein: A Biography, (Viking, 1997), p. 735. Cited in “Einstein, Zionism and Israel: Setting the Record Straight,” by Dr. Mohammad Omar Farooq, Updated: July 2006. []
  29. Farooq citing Fred Jerome and Rodger Taylor, Einstein on Race and Racism, (Rutgers University Press, 2005), p. 111; further sources given in p. 307, note #25. []
  30. “Year of Zionism,” by the Zionist General Council, World Zionist Organization: The National Institutions, Structure and Functions, 1997, p. 47 Cited in Farooq Ibid. The quotations around “non-Zionists” are in the original document. []
  31. See for example “How Einstein Divided America’s Jews,” by Walter Isaacon, The Atlantic, December 2009. This is an interesting article on Albert Einstein’s 1921 visit to America. It touches on Einstein’s views on Zionism and the rivalry between Weizmann and Brandeis. However, it does not go into great detail on Einstein’s views on Zionism but it is an a well written period piece. The author writes, among other things, as follows: “Among Einstein’s queries: With their intellectual gifts, why should Jews create a homeland that was primarily agricultural? Why did it have to be its own nation-state? Wasn’t nationalism the problem rather than the solution?” []
  32. “Einstein Revealed as an Opponent of the Jewish State,” by Jaisal Noor, Dissident Voice, May 19, 2009. See also “Israel’s supporters unwilling to wrestle with Einstein’s change of heart towards Zionism,” by Adam Horowitz, Mondoweiss, July 29, 2009. See also Kim Petersen, “A Myth Exposed: Albert Einstein Was Not a Zionist,” Dissident Voice, May 1, 2003; and “Einstein on Palestine and Zionism,” by Edward C. Corrigan, Dissident Voice, January 9th, 2010. []
  33. Evan Wilson, Decision on Palestine, (Stanford, California: Hoover Institution Press, 1979), p. 27. See also Moshe Menuhin, The Decadence of Judaism in Our Time, (Beirut: Institute of Palestine Studies, 1969), p. 325-361. According to Rabbi Elmer Berger, Adolph Ochs, the publisher of the New York Times, was anti-Zionist all of his life and the paper’s “editorial position in those days was rather consistently anti-Zionist.” However, Berger indicated that at the time the Council was formed in 1943 Sulzberger was anti-Zionist but did not publicly affiliate himself with the organization. Elmer Berger, Memoirs of an Anti-Zionist Jew, (Beirut: Institute for Palestine Studies, 1978), p. 13-14. []
  34. See “Jewish post-war problems: a study course,” Part 810 Jewish Post-war Problems: A Study Course, American Jewish Committee, Research Institute on Peace and Post-War Problems, Author American Jewish Committee. Research Institute on Peace and Post-War Problems (Publisher The Institute, 1942), p. 59. See also America Council for Judaism, Series A. Correspondence, Subseries 1: General, 1942-1953. I thank Tanya C. Hsu International Fellow-Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policies (IRMEP) Political Analyst for these two references to the ACJ. []
  35. The American Council for Judaism “Palestine: haven of refuge or power politics,” published by the American Council for Judaism, 1944, p. 7. [American Council for Judaism Records (1942-1968), American Jewish Archives. Cincinnati, OH]. See also The Jewish national home in Palestine: Hearings, Seventy-eighth Congress, second session, on H. Res. 418 and H. Res. 419 … February 8, 9, 15, and 16, 1944. With appendix of documents relating to the Jewish national home in Palestine. Author, United States Congress, House Committee on Foreign Affairs, (Ktav Publishing House, 1970), p. 122. []
  36. Thomas A. Kolsky, Jews Against Zionism: The American Council for Judaism 1942-1948, (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1990). []
  37. “A problem of all humanity,” by Tom Segev, Haaretz, Janauary 7, 2009. []
  38. Henry Hurwitz, Menorah Journal (Spring-Summer, 1954), cited in Zionism: The Dream and the Reality: A Jewish Critique, edited by Gary V. Smith, (New York: Barnes & Noble Books, 1974), p.7. For a discussion of the Menorah Journal see “The Menorah Journal (1915-1962),” by Bennett Muraskin, Outlook, July/August, 2009, pp. 5-6 and 30. []
  39. Isaac Asimov, In Joy Still Felt, (New York: Doubleday, 1980), p. 146-147. []
  40. Isaac Asimov, I. Asimov: A Memoir, (New York: Doubleday, 1994), p. 22-23. []
  41. I.F. Stone, “For a new approach to the Israeli-Arab Conflict,” New York Review of Books, August 3, 1967, reprinted in Zionism: The Dream and the Reality — A Jewish Critique, edited by Gary V. Smith, p. 210. See also, “The Racist Challenge in Israel,” in I.F. Stone’s, In a Time of Torment 1961-1967, (Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1989) p. 435-441. Originally published June 1, 1964. []
  42. “Minnesota Senator Is Among 8 Dead in Crash,” by David Stout, New York Times, October 25, 2002. []
  43. “A Tragic Loss for America and the Middle East,” by Hady Amr, Media Monitors Network, October 27, 2002. []
  44. See Senator Paul Wellstone’s Statement “Search for Middle East Peace,” April 30, 2002. []
  45. Sylvain Lévi, a prominent French Jewish academic and politician, took a sharp anti-Zionist stand on behalf of the “Alliance Israelite Universelle” at the Versailles peace conference in 1919. []
  46. Hannah Arendt, when writing about the trial of Adolph Eichmann, pointed out the irony of attacking the Nazis’ Nuremberg Laws of 1935 when certain laws in Israel regarding the personal status of Jews were identical to the infamous Nazi code. Hannah Arendt, Eichmann in Jerusalem (New York: The Viking Press, 1964), p. 7-8. For an example of her views see, “The Jewish State: Fifty Years After — Where Have Herzl’s Politics Led?,” Commentary, May 1946, reproduced in Smith, Zionism: The Dream and the Reality, p. 67-80. See the collection of her writings on Zionism in The Jewish Writings: Hannah Arendt, edited by Jerome Kohn and Ron H. Feldman, (New York: Schocken Books, 2007). Arendt’s article “Zionism Reconsidered” was originally published in the Menorah Journal, Autumn 1945 (Vol. XXIII, No. 2) and is also found in Zionism Reconsidered, edited by Michael Selzer, (London: The Macmillian Company, 1970), p. 213- 249. See also “Zion’s Rebel Daughter: Hannah Arendt on Palestine and Jewish Politics,” by Gabriel Piterberg, New Left Review, 48, November-December 2007. []
  47. “Erich Fried – A Courageous and Upright Jew and Great Poet,” Return Magazine, February 20, 2005. Fried who was anti-Zionist is described as “the most famous German-speaking poet in the modern world — was one of the first sponsors of the RETURN statement. He was a refugee from his native Austria, from where he fled after the Anschluss in 1938, his father having been beaten and tortured to death by the Gestapo.” []
  48. Hans Kohn, who was one of the world’s leading authorities on nationalism, posed the following questions on the issue. “Might not perhaps the ‘abnormal’ existence of the Jews represent a higher form of historical development than territorial nationalism? Has not the diaspora been an essential part of Jewish existence? Did it not secure Jewish survival better than the state could do?” “Zion and the Jewish National Idea,” by Hans Kohn, Menorah Journal, Autumn-Winter 1958, p. 45. This article is also reprinted in Zionism Reconsidered, edited by Michael Selzer, (London: The Macmillian Company, 1970), p. 175-212. []
  49. Bruno Kreisky, the former chancellor of Austria, who died in July 1990, was well known for his attempts to bring about reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians. ln a 1974 interview with an Israeli paper he stated: “There is no Jewish race; there are only Jewish religious groups. Israel was only the ancient, religious fatherland of Jews, but not their true fatherland.” See Bruno Kreisky interview, Ma’ariv, January 20, 1974, quoted in Lilienthal, The Zionist Connection II, p. 434 In another interview, conducted in 1985, Kreisky said, “In the struggle between Israel and the Palestinians I am on the side of the underdog — the Palestinians,” Yishayahu Ben-Porat, “Interview with Bruno Kreisky,” Yediot Aharonot, May 24, 1985, reproduced in Jerusalem, January 1986, p. 36. []
  50. See “Elmer Berger, 1908-1996,” American Council For Judaism, Issues, Fall 1996. Elmer Berger, Memoirs of an Anti-Zionist Jew, (Beirut: Institute for Palestine Studies, 1978). For more information on the Council see Thomas A. Kolsky, Jews Against Zionism: The American Council for Judaism, 1942-1948, (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, l990). []
  51. Jack Bernstein, The Life of An American Jew in Racist Marxist Israel, (Torrance, CA: Noontide Press, 1984). []
  52. See Moshe Menuhin, The Decadence of Judaism in Our Time, (Beirut: Institute of Palestine Studies, 1969). []
  53. See “Mercy and truth,” by Yehudi Menuhin, in Prophets Outcast: A Century of Dissident Jewish Writing about Zionism and Israel, edited by Adam Shatz, (New York: Nation Books, 2004), p. 271-273. He was awarded the Wolf prize for his contribution to music. In his acceptance speech given on the floor of the Israeli Knesset Yehudi Menuhim condemned Israel’s “steady asphyxiation of a dependent people.” Not only was this morally repugnant; it was unworthy of my great people… who themselves know all too well the unforgettable suffering of such an existence. []
  54. “Israel’s Flag is Not Mine,” by Alfred M. Lilienthal, Readers Digest, September, 1949; and Alfred M. Lilienthal, What Price Israel?, (Henry Regnery Company: 1953). Also see “Remembering the Foremost Jewish Anti- Zionist, Alfred M. Lilienthal, 1913-2008, by John F. Rothmann, Issues, Winter 2009. []
  55. Maxime Rodinson, Israel: A Colonial-Settler State?, trans. David Thorstad, (New York: Monad Press/Pathfinder Press, 1973). See also “Maxime Rodinson, Marxist historian of Islam,” by Douglas Johnson, The Guardian, June 3, 2004. []
  56. See “A Zionist initiative,” Christian Science Monitor, July 14, 1982. []
  57. “What Can Israel Achieve?” by Immanuel Wallerstein, Agence Global, August 13, 2006. []
  58. “Chronicle of a Suicide Foretold: The Case of Israel,” by Immanuel Wallerstein, Agence Global, 15 Jan 2009. []
  59. “Hunker Down With History,” by Richard Cohen, Washington Post, July 18, 2006, A19. []
  60. Neocons Gone Wild,” posted by Joe Klein, Time Magazine Blog, June 24, 2008. []
  61. When Extremists Attack,” posted by Joe Klein, Time Magazine Blog, July 29, 2008. []
  62. “What Iran’s Jews Say,” by Roger Cohen, New York Times, February 23, 2009. For more of his views see “Middle East Reality Check,” by Roger Cohen, New York Times, March 9, 2009. [] []
  63. Also see for example Richard Falk and Burns H. Weston, “The Relevance of International Law to Palestinian Rights in the West Bank and Gaza: In Legal Defense of the Intifada,” Harvard International Law Journal 32/1 (1991). See also Falk and Weston, “The Israeli-Occupied Territories, International Law and the Boundaries of Scholarly Discourse: A Reply to Michael Curtis,” Harvard International Law Journal 33/1 (1992); and Richard Falk, “International Law and the al-Aqsa Intifada,” Middle East Report, 217 (Winter 2000). []
  64. “Israel expels UN rights envoy who compared Israelis to Nazis,” by Yoav Stern, Haaretz, December 15, 2008. []
  65. “Israeli crimes against humanity in Gaza,” Richard Falk interviewed by Michael Slate “…I think the Palestinians stand out as the most victimized people in the world,” Revolution Online, 20 January, 2009. []
  66. “Israel’s war crimes,” by Richard Falk, Le Monde diplomatique, English edition, March 2009. []
  67. “Israel: A Stalemated Action of History,” by Gabriel Kolko, CounterPunch, August 25, 2009. []
  68. “Jews Like Us,” by Bruce Jackson, in The Politics of Anti-Semitism, edited by Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair, (Petrolia, California: CounterPunch, 2003), p. 53. [] []
  69. “We Aren’t One: American Jewish Voices for Peace,” by Murray Polner, LewRockwell.com, November 1, 2007. []
  70. “Israel must unpick its ethnic myth,” by Tony Judt, Financial Times, December 7, 2009. []
  71. Ibid. For more of Judt’s writings see “Israel: The Alternative,” by Tony Judt, New York Review of Books, October 23, 2003. Vol. 50, Number 16; also see “The country that wouldn’t grow up,” by Tony Judt, Haaretz, May 2, 2006. His book Postwar: The History of Europe Since 1945 was published in 2005. []
  72. “Human Rights in Palestine and Other Occupied Arab Territories: Report of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict,” Human Rights Council Twelfth session Agenda item 7, A/HRC/12/48, 15 September, 2009. Original: English. Also known as “The Goldstone Report.” []
  73. “UN Inquiry Finds Israel Punished and Terrorized Palestinian Civilians Committed War Crimes During Gaza Assault,” interview with Amy Goodman, Democracy Now, September 16, 2009. []
  74. “Justice in Gaza,” by Richard Goldstone, New York Times, September 17, 2009. []
  75. “Goldstone: Holocaust shaped view on war crimes,” by Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz, September 18, 2009. [] []
  76. Goldstone Reports Gaza War Crimes: Called Self-Hating Jew 5000 Times and Still Counting,” by M.J. Rosenberg,. September 16, 2009. []
  77. “Israeli defence depends on attacking the messenger,” by Alan Philps, The National, September 17, 2009. []
  78. “Israel rejects war crimes findings of UN Gaza inquiry,” by Rory McCarthy, The Guardian, September 16, 2009. []
  79. “Rattling the Cage: A wake-up call from Judge Goldstone,” by Larry Derfner, Jerusalem Post, September 16, 2009; “A real Jew,” by Gideon Spiro, Red Rag Weekly Column, September 17, 2009 translated and republished in Occupation Magazine, September 24, 2009; “Israel and Hamas both get a fair shot in the Goldstone report on Gaza,” by Erna Paris, Globe and Mail, September 18, 2009; “Listen to Goldstone: UN report on Gaza war not one-sided, does not ignore Hamas crimes,” by Eyal Gross, YNetnews, September 24, 2009; “Israel should pay attention to criticism from its own people,” by Robert Fisk, The Independent, September 26, 2009; and “Democrats Attacks on Goldstone,” by Stephen Zunes, Tikkun Magazine, November/December, 2009. See also, “The Goldstone Report and the Debate in Israel,” by Edward C. Corrigan, Dissident Voice, December 2, 2009. []
  80. “Imposing Middle East Peace,” by Henry Siegman, The Nation, January 25, 2010. See also AThe Middle East Peace Process Scam,” by Henry Siegman, London Review of Books, Vol. 29 No. 16, 16 August, 2007; and “Israel’s Lies,” by Henry Siegman, London Review of Books, January 29, 2009. []
  81. “Professor called brilliant, inspiring, biased, dangerous,” by Scott Whipple, Bristol Press, May 2, 2009; also see “The Iron Wall of Failure,” by Norton Mezvinsky, The Herald, (New Britain), January 24, 2009. []
  82. Norton Mezvinsky, The Character of the State of Israel, ( London: The Arab League Office, 1971); see also “Humanitarian Dissent in Zionism: Martin Buber and Judah Magnes,” by Norton Mezvinsky, in Judaism or Zionism? What Difference for the Middle East?, edited by EAFORD and Americian Jewish Alternatives to Zionism, (London: Zed Books Ltd., 1986.), p. 98-119. ICMES address is the is International Council for Middle East Studies c/o International Law Institute, 1055 Thomas Jefferson Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20007. []
  83. “American Jewry and the Zionist Jewish State Concept,” by Norton Mezvinsky, The Link, September-October 1973, Volume 6, Issue 4. []
  84. Noam Chomsky, Peace in the Middle East?, (New York: Vintage Books, 1974); and Noam Chomsky, The Fateful Triangle: The United States, Israel, and the Palestinians, ( New York: South End Press, 1983). []
  85. “Exterminate all the Brutes: Gaza 2009,” by Noam Chomsky, chomsky.info, January 19, 2009 (revised June 6, 2009). Based on a talk at the Center for International Studies MIT, January 19, 2009. Earlier versions appeared on ZNet and in The Spokesman (England), 103, 2009. []
  86. “Why is Norman Finkelstein Not Allowed to Teach?,” by David Klein, in Edward J. Carvalho and David B. Downing, eds., Academic Freedom and Intellectual Activism in the Post-9/11 University, Works and Days, 26 (Spring/Fall 2008). See also “Finkelstein Interviewed,” ZNet, September 16, 2007; and “A Battle for Academic Freedom at DePaul,” by Matthew Abraham, Dissident Voice, June 18, 2007. []
  87. See Norman G. Finkelstein, Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestinian Conflict, (New York: Verso Press, 1995); see also The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Jewish Suffering, 2nd ed. (London and New York: Verso, 2003); Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History, (Los Angeles and Berkeley: University of California Press, 2005); and “Kill Arabs, Cry Anti-Semitism,” by Norman Finkelstein, CounterPunch, September 12, 2006. []
  88. American Radical premiered at Chicago Underground Film Festival and was acquired by Typecast Releasing for US Distribution starting September 9th, 2009. “Ridgen and Rossier’s new haunting documentary American Radical tells the story of controversial Jewish academic Norman Finkelstein.” A selective theatrical release was scheduled for the US in the Fall of 2009. []
  89. Joel Kovel, Overcoming Zionism: Creating a Single Democratic State in Israel/Palestine, (London: Pluto Press, 2007); see also “Zionism’s Bad Conscience,” by Joel Kovel, Tikkun, Sept/Oct 2002; and “Anti-Zionist lectures: Kovel decries influence of Israel lobby groups,” by Ron Friedman, The Jewish Independent, September 28, 2007. []
  90. “Overcoming Impunity,” by Joel Kovel, The Link, January-March 2009, Volume 42, Issue 1. []
  91. “Shut up about the ‘two-state solution.’ In a classic case of false advertising: President Obama tries to push ‘separate but equal’ on the Palestinians,” by Joseph Glatzer, The Sun Dial, September 28, 2009. []
  92. “A few years ago I used McCarthy tactics against a professor who criticized Israel. Now I’m going on the Gaza Freedom March,” by Joseph Glatzer on MondoWeiss, December 15, 2009. See also “Israeli women jailed for refusing to serve in the Israeli army tour the United States,” by Dikla Kadosh, Jewish Journal, October 6, 2009. []
  93. Professor Emeritus Political Science at the State University of New York at Binghamton; see “The Semantics of Zionism, Anti-Zionism and Anti-Semitism,” by Don Peretz in Judaism or Zionism? What Difference for the Middle East?, edited by EAFORD and Americian Jewish Alternatives to Zionism, (London: Zed Books Ltd., 1986.), pp. 76-87. []
  94. “New Israeli Scholars Face up to Israel’s Origins,” by Eric Rouleau and “Are the Jews an Invented People,” by Eric Rouleau, Le Monde diplomatique, 10 May, 2008. []
  95. See for example “Living with the Holocaust: The Journey of a Child of Holocaust Survivors,” by Sara Roy, Journal of Palestine Studies, (Institute for Palestine Studies) Fall 2002; and “If Gaza falls …” by Sara Roy, London Review of Books, January 1, 2009. []
  96. “Civil Society and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Beneath the Hideous Veneer of Security,” by Jennifer Loewenstein, CounterPunch, September 23, 2007. []
  97. See Speech given to the South African Parliament by Government Minister Ronnie Kasrils, MP on 6 June, 2007 to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the Six Day War; also see “Former ANC leader backs study finding Israel guilty of apartheid,” by Ma’an News Agency, reprinted in Occupation Magazine, August 18, 2009. []
  98. “Meet the New Goliath — Israel is Bad for Jewish Ethics,” by Saul Landau, CounterPunch, June 30, 2007-July 1, 2007. []
  99. See Zachary Lochman and Joel Beinin, eds., Intifada: The Palestinian Uprising Against Israeli Occupation, (Boston: South End Press, 1989). []
  100. “It’s the Empire Stupid,” by Joel Beinin, Occupation Magazine, February 20, 2008. []
  101. Ian Lustick, Arabs in the Jewish State: Israel’s Control of a National Minority, (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1980); and Ian Lustick, Unsettled States, Disputed Lands: Britain and Ireland, France and Algeria, Israel and the West Bank, (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1993). []
  102. See “Israel’s Sacred Terrorism,” in Edward S. Herman, The Real Terror Network, (Montreal: Black Rose Books, 1982) p. 76-79; also “Parallel And Linked Genocides: Iraq And Palestine,” by Edward S. Herman, Swans, January 20, 2003. []
  103. Torturing Palestinian Detainees in Israeli Occupation Prisons,” by Stephen Lendman, Cross-Cultural Understanding, posted November 2007; and “Torture As Official Israeli Policy,” by Stephen Lendman, Counter Currents, August 28, 2008; also “Defending Zionism: Defending the Indefensible,” by Stephen Lendman, Dissident Voice, Monday, 30 March, 2009; and “Problems Defending Palestinians in Israeli Courts,” by Stephen Lendman, Palestine Chronicle, September 13, 2009. []
  104. “There are No Monopolies on Suffering: My Israel Question,” by Antony Loewenstein, CounterPunch, September 13, 2006; see also “Antony Loewenstein on Racism and Jewish-Born Critics of Zionism,” by Philip Weiss, Mondoweiss, April 24, 2007. “Why aren’t Jews outraged by Israeli occupation?” by Antony Loewenstein, Haaretz, July 11, 2009. He is the anti-Zionist Jewish author of the Australian best selling book My Israel Question, (Carlton, Melbourne University Press, 2006). Loewenstein is a Sydney-based journalist, author and blogger. His websites are here and here. His email is moc.nietsneweolynotnanull@ynotna. []
  105. “Defending Zionism in a Time of Occupation and Oppression,” by Stephen Zunes, Tikkun, March 2004; Also see “The Israel Lobby Revisited,” by Stephen Zunes, Foreign Policy in Focus, December 23, 2007. Stephen Zunes is Middle East editor for Foreign Policy in Focus. He is a professor of politics at the University of San Francisco and chair of its Middle East Studies program. []
  106. “Blanket Immunity from War Crimes: When Criticism of Cluster Bombs is “Anti-Semitic,’” by Stanley Heller, CounterPunch, September 2/3, 2006; “Two Weeks in the Occupied Territories Report from the Land of Apartheid,” by Stanley Heller, CounterPunch, August 2, 2007. []
  107. “Are the Words ‘Israel’ and ‘Jews’ Synonymous?” by Danny Schechter, ZNet, August 13, 2006. []
  108. “51 Documents Zionist Collaboration with the Nazis,” by Lenni Brenner, CounterPunch, December 23, 2002. See also the book by Lenni Brenner, 51 Documents: Zionist Collaboration with the Nazis, (Fort Lee, New Jersey: Barricade Books Inc., 2002); “When Israel Was Apartheid’s Open Ally,” by Lenni Brenner, Media With a Conscience, November 7, 2007; and “Rice Compares Israeli Occupation to Infamous US Segregation,” by Lenni Brenner, Monthly Review, December 30, 2007. []
  109. On Rationalizing Israel’s Dispossession of the Palestinians,” by Jeff Blankfort, Dissident Voice, September 5, 2009. []
  110. Alain Gresh, The PLO: Towards an Independent State: The Struggle Within, translated by A.M. Berret (London: Zed Books, 1985). See also “The Long March of Folly That Began in 1967: Gaza war changes Middle East equation at Israel’s expense,” by Alain Gresh, Le Monde diplomatique, February 2009. []
  111. Cheryl Rubenberg, The Palestine Liberation Organization: Its Institutional Infrastructure, (Belmont Massachusetts: Institute of Arab Studies, 1983). []
  112. “The New Jewish Stereotypes,” by Philip Roth reprinted in Zionism Reconsidered, edited by Michael Selzer, (London: The Macmillian Company, 1970), p. 107-116. []
  113. Michael Selzer, The Aryanization of the Jewish State, (New York: Black Star Books, 1967). []
  114. See David Fromkin, A Peace to End All Peace, (New York; Avon Books, 1989). This is an excellent history of the fall of the Ottoman Empire and the creation of the modern Middle East with all of its problems. []
  115. Professor Howard Zinn outstanding Jewish American activist, civil libertarian, anti-war activist, historian, playwright, political activist, social critic, and socialist; author of some 20 books including the best-seller People’s History of the United States. He wrote in support of the New Hampshire Students for Justice in Palestine that were organizing an Israel boycott and divestment campaign the following: “I want to express my admiration and support for the actions of Hampshire College students in their successful campaign for divestment from financial ties with Israel. It is extremely important for Israel to know that its violence against Gaza and its long occupation of Palestinian lands is not acceptable to the people in the United States. I hope your campaign will set an example for students all over the country, and lead to justice in the Middle East, as the divestment campaign helped end Apartheid in South Africa.” []
  116. Seymour M. Hersh, The Samson Option: Israel’s Nuclear Arsenal and American Foreign Policy, (New York: Vintage Books, 1993). []
  117. “Time Running Out For A Two State Solution,” by Bob Simon, CBS Sixty Minutes, January 25, 2009. The segment is by Senior CBS Foreign Correspondent Bob Simon, who is Jewish and living outside Tel-Aviv. []
  118. “Giving Israel a Pass,” by Barry Lando, TruthDig.com, February 1, 2008. []
  119. See “Israeli Nuclear Whistleblower Risks Arrest, Again: An Interview with Mordechai Vanunu,” by Amy Goodman, CounterPunch, August 18, 2004; and “Leading Israeli Scholar Avi Shlaim: Israel Committing ‘State Terror’ in Gaza Attack, Preventing Peace,” Interview by Amy Goodman, Democracy Now, January 14, 2009; For a critical assessment of Amy Goodman see “What’s Good About Amy Goodman?” by Jason Maoz, The Jewish Press, March 2, 2005. []
  120. “Gag and Smear: The Misuses of Anti-Semitism,” by Norman Solomon, CounterPunch, May 8, 2006. []
  121. “The Perils of Ethnic Nationalism,” by Bennett Muraskin, Outlook, (July/August 2006). []
  122. “The Zionist Attack on Jewish Values,” by Lawrence Davidson, Issues, Winter 2009. Lawrence Davidson is Professor of History at West Chester University in West Chester PA. His special area of study is the history of America Foreign Policy toward the Middle East. He has authored America’s Palestine: Popular and Official Perceptions from Balfour to Israeli Statehood, (University Press of Florida, 2001); Islamic Fundamentalism (Greenwood Press, 2003); and Foreign Policy Inc.: Privatizing American National Interests, (University Press of Kentucky, 2009). Professor Davidson speaks widely on the subject of the Middle East and the impact of U.S. policies on the region. []
  123. “Israel needs tough love,” by Jerome M. Segal, Haaretz, May 9, 2008. []
  124. For example see “Tragedy of Israel and Palestine,” by Mark LeVine, Al-Jazeera, March 9, 2008; See also “Who Will Save Israel from Itself?” by Mark LeVine, Huffington Post, January 13, 2009. LeVine’s publications include Mark LeVine, Viggo Mortensen and Pilar Perez, Twilight of Empire: Responses to Occupation, (Perceval Press, 2004); Overthrowing Geography: Jaffa, Tel Aviv and the Struggle for Palestine, (University of California Press, 2005); Mark LeVine and Armando Salvatore, Religion, Social Practices and Contested Hegemonies: Reconstructing the Public Sphere in Muslim Majority Societies, (Palgrave Press, 2005); Why They Don’t Hate Us: Lifting the Veil on the Axis of Evil, (Oneworld Publications, 2005) and Mark LeVine and Sandy Sufian, Reapproaching the Border: New Perspectives on the Study of Israel/Palestine, (Rowman Littlefield Press, 2007); and An Impossible Peace: Oslo and the Burdens of History, (Zed Books, 2008). For an attack on LeVine by a leading Zionist academic watchdog see “Collaborators in the Campus War against Israel and the Jews: Mark LeVine,” by Steven Plaut, FrontpageMagazine.com, October 15, 2009. []
  125. Rabbi Lerner, author of The Left Hand of God: Taking Our Country Back from the Religious Right, ( San Francisco: Harper, 2006). Lerner is the Rabbi of Beyt Tikkun and is the editor of Tikkun Magazine: A Bimonthly Jewish Critique of Politics, Culture and Society. TIKKUN is one of the most respected intellectual/cultural magazines in the Jewish world, but also one of the most controversial because of its stand in favor of the rights of Palestinians, on the one hand, which locates him in the minds of many as the leader and most prominent spokesperson in the U.S. of Jewish supporters of the Israeli peace movement, and on the other hand, because of his stand critiquing the anti-religious and anti-spiritual biases of the secular Left, insisting that they need to address the spiritual hunger of Americans as equally important to their material needs. []
  126. Outrage in Gaza: No More Apologies,” by Rabbi Brant Rosen, December 28, 2008. []
  127. “What’s behind all the name calling?” by Sydney Levy, Jewish Voice for Peace, August 6, 2009. []
  128. “Palestine Is Being Destroyed,” by Mark Braverman, Jewish Peace Newsletter, December 30, 2007. []
  129. Phyllis Bennis, Understanding the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: A Primer, (Northampton, MA: Olive Branch Press, 2007). []
  130. “Dissidents Looking Beyond Zionism,” by David Finkel, Against the Current, 140, May-June 2009. []
  131. Marc H. Ellis, Judaism Does Not Equal Israel, (New York: New Press, 2009). []
  132. “Nazi Tactics by Israel and America in the Phony War On Terror,” by Joel Fischer, Information Clearing House, October 2, 2006. []
  133. “Toward a Single State Solution, Zionism, Anti-Semitism and the People of Palestine,” by Noel Ignatiev, CounterPunch, June 17, 2004. Noel Ignatiev is author of How the Irish Became White, cofounder and coeditor of Race Traitor: Journal of the New Abolitionism, and a teacher at the Massachusetts College of Art. This essay is based on a talk he delivered in March 2004 at the Massachusetts College of Art. []
  134. See “What is anti-Semitism?: A UCSB professor’s controversial e-mail underscores the need to define a sensitive subject,” by Nicholas Goldberg, Los Angeles Times, May 12, 2009; “This is Anti-Semitism: True or False? A Game Prof. Robinson Doesn’t Want to Play Anymore,” by Silvia Uribe, Santa Barbara Independent, June 23, 2009; and see also “Robinson cleared of anti-Semitic allegation: Calif. professor’s Gaza e-mail cleared by panel,” The Associated Press, June 24, 2009. []
  135. “Those Charging Jewish Critics of Israel with Aiding Anti-Semitism Are Accused of Trying to Stifle Free and Open Debate,” by Allan C. Brownfeld Editor, American Council for Judaism, Special Interest Report, March-April 2007; also see, “Zionism at 100: Remembering Its Often Prophetic Jewish Critics,” by Allan C. Brownfeld, Issues, Summer 1997; See also “Explaining the Long C and Largely Untold C History of Jewish Opposition to Zionism,” by Allan C. Brownfeld, Issues, Fall 2008; and “A Time to Speak Out: Jewish Voices Challenging the Jewish Establishment and Embracing Universal Principles of Justice,” by Allan C. Brownfeld, Issues, Summer / Fall 2009. []
  136. See “Letter of Resignation from the Jewish People,” by Bertell Ollman, []
  137. Anti racist Jews against racist Zionism,” by Dr. Gideon Polya, Media With a Conscience; see also “We Are All Palestinians,” by Gideon Polya, Media With a Conscience, February 1, 2008. []
  138. Ralph Schoenman, The Hidden History of Zionism, (San Francisco, CA: Walnut Publishing Company, 1994). []
  139. Memories of a Promised Land,” by Mike Marquisee, New Humanist, June 1, 2008. Also published by Occupation Magazine. []
  140. Revoking Israel’s UN Membership,” by Snorre Lindquist and Lasse Wilhelmson, The Palestine Chronicle, December 3, 2008. See also “Zionism more than traditional colonialism and apartheid,” by Lasse Wilhelmson, Kommentra, Janauary 1, 2004. []
  141. “There were no Indians,” by Anthony Lewis, New York Times, January 13, 1986 for his critique of Joan Peter’s book From Time Immemorial; and “Israel: It’s Time to Speak Out about Injustice,” by Anthony Lewis, New York Times, October 22, 1989. []
  142. “U.S. Jews Cannot Acquiesce to Sharon’s Monstrous Behavior,” by Robert Scheer, Los Angeles Times, April 9, 2002. []
  143. Palestinian statelessness is an American Jewish achievement,” by Philip Weiss, TPM Café, December 11, 2008; “Cry the beloved country: Israeli civil rights org says 4 million Arabs have no right to life, right to work, right of movement, right to speak,” by Philip Weiss Mondoweiss on December 8, 2008; see also “Why I say I’m an Anti-Zionist not a Post-Zionist,” by Philip Weiss, Mondoweiss, January 10, 2009. []
  144. “When criticised, attack the critics,” by Adam Horowitz and Philip Weiss, The Australian, October 8, 2009. []
  145. MESA rallies to Gordon’s defence,” by Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 29 August, 2009. Republished in Occupation Magazine, August 30, 2009. []
  146. “Nationalism of Fools: Reflections on Zionism From a Dissident Jew,” by Tim Wise, ZNet, September 6, 2001. See also. Tim Wise, (01-21-2003), “Fraud fit for a King: Israel, Zionism, and the misuse of MLK,” Z Magazine. Retrieved 08-26-2009. []
  147. The Israel Lobby ‘ Neocon Pundits “Bad For The Jews,” by Eric Alterman, The Nation, January 7, 2008. []
  148. “Jews Need to Speak Out on Abuse of Palestinians,” by Tsela Barr, Judith Laitman, and Haley Michaels Pollack, The Capital Times, (Madison, Wisconsin) December 1, 2007. []
  149. “Same As It Ever Was,” by Michelle Goldberg, The American Prospect, July 8, 2009. Reprinted in Occupation Magazine. []
  150. “The persistent plague of anti-Semitism: where it comes from, how to end it,” by Adrienne Weller, Freedom Socialist, 27, No. 5, October-November 2006. She writes: “Anti-Semitism arises from a deep historical well. And it continues to serve a purpose in our era for the powers-that-be, for whom Jews remain a convenient scapegoat for social and economic troubles. This is how racism and sexism are used. Not helping matters is the role that Israel plays in the Middle East: out of confusion or malice, many critics of Israel falsely equate Jews as a people with the policies and actions of this oppressive state.” []
  151. The Beginning of the End of the Middle East Crisis: Resolving the Displaced Persons Problem,” by Dan Lieberman, Dissident Voice, August 28, 2009. Alternative Insight, is a monthly web based newsletter. []
  152. “Graffiti and Israel,” by Marc Sapir, Berkeley Daily Planet, October 2, 2008; “The self destruction of the Zionist State of Israel,” by Marc Sapir, MD, January 5, 2009. []
  153. “This land was theirs,” by Hannah Mermelstein, The Jewish Advocate, (Boston) March 22, 2008. []
  154. “Witness for the Defenseless,” by Anna Baltzser, The Link, August-September 2007, 40: 3. Hannah Mermelstein is a co-founder of Birthright Unplugged and lives in Boston, Philadelphia and Ramallah. []
  155. “Israel’s culture of impunity,” by Sharon Weill, Le Monde diplomatique, September 2009. Sharon Weill is a researcher at the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, and lectures at Tel Aviv and Paris II Universities. []
  156. “When Israel expelled Palestinians,” by Randall Kuhn, Washington Times, January 14, 2009. Randall Kuhn is an assistant professor and Director of the Global Health Affairs Program at the University of Denver, Josef Korbel School of International Studies. []
  157. “Zionism is the problem,” by Ben Ehrenreich, Los Angeles Times, March 15, 2009. He is the author of the novel The Suitors. []
  158. See “Ed Asner’s letter in support of Israeli conscientious objectors,” from Jewish Voice for Peace and the Huffington Post first posted December 10, 2008. []
  159. “Roseanne Barr: Israel is a ‘Nazi state,’” by Michael Freund , Jerusalem Post, January 2, 2009; See also “Roseanne Barr Blasts Zionism And Israel,” RoseanneWorld.Ros, April 4, 2007. Site confirmed April 14, 2007. Barr wrote: “On being a Jew and not supporting Israel… I think the Zionists made a huge mistake when they factioned the left in Germany. They ended up trading Jewish lives for land, instead of standing together with the socialist factions that opposed Hitler. Zionism was the last nail in the casket of European Jewry. The Arab’s protection is the only reason any holy site remains in Israel. The Jews line up to stone women who try to access those sites. I saw it with my own eyes… The Arabs do not invade other countries. The Israelis do. I am sick of Israel and I am sick of Zionists. They are propped up by evangelical Christians who cannot wait for the Arabs to kill them so that their genocidal war god whom they misname Jesus can come back. In their twisted logic, the Jews call that support for Israel. In the Christian’s form of suicidal insanity, all the Jews need to die in Israel so that “/peace/” can be attained there.” []
  160. See “Jewish Criticism of Zionism,” by Edward C. Corrigan, American-Arab Affairs (now Middle East Policy), Winter 1990-91, p. 94-116; See also “Jews who have spoken out against the carnage in Gaza: Righteous,” by John F. Mahoney, Americans for Middle East Understanding, The Link, April -June 2009, Volume 42, Issue 2. []
  161. Prophets Outcast: A Century of Dissident Jewish Writing about Zionism and Israel, edited by Adam Shatz (New York: Nation Books, 2004). A copy of my review can be found in Middle East Policy, Summer 2005, p. 139-143. []
  162. Reframing Anti-Semitism: Alternative Jewish Perspectives, by Jewish Voice for Peace, eds. (Oakland California, 2004). My review of is found in Middle East Policy, Spring 2006, p. 156-161. []
  163. Ibid., p. 85-89. []

Edward C. Corrigan is a lawyer certified as a Specialist in Citizenship and Immigration Law and Immigration and Refugee Protection by the Law Society of Upper Canada in London, Ontario, Canada. He can be reached at: corriganlaw@edcorrigan.ca. Read other articles by Edward, or visit Edward's website.

24 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. bozh said on April 16th, 2010 at 12:16pm #

    Does any of these ‘jewish dissenters’ honor the ROR. I know that chomsky does not. He told me in one of his emails to me he’s not for ROR of original expellees’ children.
    Chomsky is also for a two state solution; i.e., disconnected counties for pals and a country for ‘jews’. He knows that the land taken by war can be only gained back thru a war.
    Probably all other ‘jews’ listed in corigan’s piece know that. All of these ‘jews’ do not call for dead and living ‘jewish’ criminal’s prosecution for war crimes.

    It seems that only one dissenter deems self a human first and then an american and much after that a ‘jew’.
    Richard cohen calls israel a mistake and not a criminal act. Joe klein says that iran “poses some threat” to israel. Leaves out how so and why? i am not imprerssed with these ‘jews’. I think that they know israel is an abomination and thus all they do is control the damage! tnx

  2. greybeard616@yahoo.com said on April 16th, 2010 at 1:07pm #

    The degree to which these Jews are anti-Zionist varies tremendously; Seymour Hersch gave NUMAC a “pass” while investigating the pilfering of fissile material and its being sent to Israel. In my opinion, Zionists are giving legitimate cause for disliking the behavior of “the Jewish state”.

    Diaspora Jews might consider attempting to save, not the Jewish state, but the Jewish “soul”–that cause for claiming any attachment to Judaism. It’s been hijacked by Zionists and is being besmirched beyond recognition.

  3. Ismail Zayid said on April 16th, 2010 at 3:41pm #

    Edward Corrigan presents an excellent and thorough analysis of the Zionist doctrine and the programme it engendered, including the mythology it embodied and the planned project of ethnic cleansing of the indigenous people of Palestine and the resulting defiance of international law.

    He documents correctly the vital and principled role played by many prominent Jewish thinkers and intellectuals who saw through the true meaning of the Zionist ideology and the damage it was destined to bring about to Jews, Muslims and Christians in Palestine, the Middle East and the world at large. Encouragingly, there are still with us many Jews who share this rejection of Zionism, and it is hoped that, they together with many active, knowlegable and concerned others,will work to bring about peace to that tortured land.

  4. Rehmat said on April 16th, 2010 at 8:04pm #

    First of all – Jews are becoming aware of the fact that Zionism has nothing to do with Judaism as a relgion. The great majority of World Zionist Congress leaders were professed atheists – if one read the early Zionist literature, one will find that these leaders hated their fellow Jews and called them “parasites”, “unclean”, “trouble makers” and “dogs”. Lenni Brenner and Theodor Herzl being some of those leaders.

    Most people have been made to believe that Nazis were the master of propaganda lies, however, the fact is – the Zionists learned those techniques during their collaboration with Nazis and later refined those techniques. One just has to have a look at Israel’s Hasbara Handbook to find out how the Zionists have succeeded silenced most of their western critics. The book lists seven basic propaganda devices – Which are : Name Calling; Glittering Generality; Transfer; Testimonial; Plain Folks; Fear, and Bandwagon. Hasbara is a Hebrew word, which means “explanation”!!

    Understanding Zionists’ Nature
    http://rehmat1.wordpress.com/2009/01/11/understanding-zionists-nature/

  5. Kim Petersen said on April 16th, 2010 at 8:51pm #

    The article is valuable in that it can serve as a bulwark against the slandering of non-Jewish opponents of Zionism with the ad hominem label anti-Semite because it makes clear that many Jews do stand up against the atrocities committed by Zionist Jews.

    It must also be pointed out that many of the Jews cited in the article, however, are Zionists or soft on Zionism. Also, some of the staunchest Jewish opponents of Zionism are glaring in omission (e.g., Gilad Atzmon, Israel Shamir).

    The opening sentence that “most of the strongest critics of Zionism and Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians are Jewish” is hyperbolic, unsupported, and separates Jews from non-Jews (the later being implicitly inferior in criticism of Zionism). It ignores the fact that gentile opponents of Zionism are smeared as anti-Semites, a smear that does not stain a Jew in the same manner.

  6. bozh said on April 17th, 2010 at 7:10am #

    Let us see how zionism; i.e., a ‘special’ or particular theft of land, has nothing to do with judaism?
    The stolen land by war had to be populated with socalled zionists, nonzionists, ‘jews’ and jews.

    If the ‘zionists’ represented a small minority of ‘jews’ and jews; all of them living for millenia outside palestine, how were the ‘zionists’, who may have constituted just 10% of ‘jewish’ pop, able to populate so much of the palestine?

    It cld be noted that ‘zionists’ selves were not of one ethnicity but many. This applies to other ‘jews’ also. So, here we have one relation that all ‘jews’ share.
    ‘Zionists’ and nonzionists also share many beliefs; includes their view of selves as a separate people with superior traits, etc.

    There is no such thing as an event ['zionism'] existing in total isolation from any event let alone ‘zionism’ in total isolation even from one ‘jew’ let alone mns.
    To deny this, represents extreme thinking and not true to reality.

    ‘Zionists’, in order to commit enormous crimes, needed christian lands and empires and not only for partition of palestine, but also for de jure recognition for the war-rought new state.

    They also needed money. They got it from judeo-christian ad hoc alliance and they still get money arms, etc., from same people.

    In thinking and writing ab any event, it wld be wise to connect all the salient dots.
    Such thinking is called by some people “nonelementalism”. No thing in one reallity stands in tolal isolation from any other event.
    So, slavery 7k yrs ago is connected with every war ever waged and every war ever waged is connected with each of those wars + ‘laws’, democracy, classes, modern and ancient ‘nobility’ [read please criminal minds], ‘religions’ [read criminal orgs], etcetc.
    It is easily seen that ‘jews’ corrigan listed, select arbitrarily some dots. And that is not right!
    I agree with petersen! tnx

  7. David Silver said on April 17th, 2010 at 8:18am #

    Compliments from a Leninist who has been called a self hating Jew
    a thousand times. My division helped to liberate Buchenwald.

    The profoundly racist Zionist endeavor is in their slogan (Weitzman and Ben Gurion) “A Land Without People (in Palestine) for a People
    Without Land.(the Jews. Also the Hashomae Hatzair calining they
    are a Socialist kibbutz community never allowed non-Jews to join.

  8. jon s said on April 17th, 2010 at 8:47am #

    Kim,
    Some real Anti-Semites try to masquerade as merely Anti-Zionists, and should be exposed for what they are.
    You yourself mention “Israel Shamir”, the bogus identity of one Adam Ermash, apparently an extreme right-wing Russian Anti-Semite.
    See here:
    http://www.socialistviewpoint.org/sept_04/sept_04_22.html

  9. Kim Petersen said on April 17th, 2010 at 9:43am #

    jon s,
    There may well be some “anti-Semites” masquerading merely as anti-Zionists, and they should be exposed. But they must be exposed with solid evidence not URLs filled with slander.
    As for Mr Shamir, he stands for Palestinian rights. I support this. I do not share his Christian angle and some other views. And if clear evidence of “anti-Semitism” were presented, then I would disavow myself of that. I have seen controversial stands but no outright “anti-Semitism.”
    And when it comes to masquerading, a major masquerade is non-Mizrahi Jews posing as Semites.
    With all due respect, where I differ vehemently with you sir is your morally outrageous supremacism: that one group of people has the right to dispossess another people. That is clear, irrefutable racism.

  10. jon s said on April 17th, 2010 at 12:32pm #

    Kim,
    As I see it, if some people support the rights of all peoples in the world to a homeland, except the Jews – there’s racism for you.
    I would agree that the term “Anti-Semitism “ is flawed and imprecise these days. I used it in the usual, popular meaning, as synonymous with “racist Jew-hatred.”
    As to whether or not the link I provided is “slanderous” or useful in exposing a promoter of hatred – I’m willing to let the readers of DV be the judges.

  11. Kim Petersen said on April 17th, 2010 at 1:11pm #

    jon s,
    Your silence to the dispossession of indigenous Palestinians speaks loudly.
    On the other hand, (with the reminder that I prefer no borders for people) I do not know of anyone who is opposed to Jews having a homeland. Ergo, there is no racism. A homeland for Jews is fine, but not a homeland obtained by dispossessing another people of their historical territory. It is monumentally preposterous to argue that opposing the racist dispossession of a people is racism against the dispossessors.

  12. jon s said on April 17th, 2010 at 1:30pm #

    Kim,
    Well, here it is, the conflict in a nutshell : the same territory is the homeland of two peoples. Therefore in my view the UN , for once, essentially got it right back in 1947 when it recommended partition, aka “the two-state solution”.

  13. holden said on April 17th, 2010 at 3:31pm #

    dispossession of “indigenous Palestinians?” There were fewer of those than Jews who had been living in the Palestine area for upwards of 3,000 years. And the Zionists did not arrive as “conquistadors.” They bought tracts of largely useless land that the locals were only too happy to sell them.

    No the problem really got started and stands today because of Arab rejection-ism and a refusal to accept any living Jews at all in the Middle East.

    The wars and dispossession of local Arabs only began after they had gone to war against the Jews to massacre them and take back the land that their own people had sold them.

    Tell us about the ethnic cleansing that took place 100 years ago for Tel Aviv,

    Fot the rest of you..the land under Tel Aviv was bought not conquered.

    Show us differently. You can’t anyway.

  14. bozh said on April 17th, 2010 at 4:57pm #

    Well, i am proud when called an antisemite. That’s because semitism as the ‘zionists’ use that word or imbue it with their own meanings, does not exist.
    Of course, every ‘zionist’ has the right to imbue the words semite, prosemite, or antsemite with any meanings they choose.

    It is their basic human right to say anything they want and to use words or guitars in any way that pleases them.
    And they have the right to call any inquiry into what ‘jews’ do “antisemitism”.

    But i estimate that 99.99 of world pop do not believe in voodoo; i.e., magic of words. Calling a person antisemitic appears as voodoo craft. Person using this ancient craft expects that a person called that name wld evaluate it as true.

    But only very few people wld do that. Most do evaluate it as a lie. And such behavior militates against people who call names other people. The ‘jewish’ trolls know this, i expect; however, appear in exremis disturbed and desperate. tnx

  15. dan e said on April 17th, 2010 at 6:40pm #

    Rehmat,

    Surely you weren’t serious when you put Lenni Brenner in the same class of “Zionist leaders” as T Herzl? Just a momentary clerical slip, right?

    Might be good to clarify, some of the less initiated might be misled?

    Thanks,
    Dan

  16. Edward C. Corrigan said on April 19th, 2010 at 12:35am #

    Dan Lenni Brenner is a strongly anti-Zionist Jew. I never suggested that he was Zionist he is attacking anti-Semitic characterizations of Jews by Zionists.

    This article is my latest contribution to the discussion of the debate within the Jewish community on Zionism and on Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. I have prepared separate articles on Israeli criticism of Zionism which have already been submitted to another journal for publication. That is why Gilad Atzmon, Israel Shamir are not part of this article as both are Israelis. I am in the process of preparing articles on British Jewish critics, Canadian Jewish critics and Arab Jewish critics of Zionism. These parts of the Jewish community are, for the most part, left out of this article for that reason. The full article is over 19,000 words but it does cover many Jewish Critics of Zionism and of Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. Several parts of the article have been previously published. This article is to a large extent an update of my article published nearly 20 years ago, “Jewish Criticism of Zionism,” by Edward C. Corrigan, Middle East Policy (Formerly American-Arab Affairs) Winter 1990-91, pp. 94-116.

    http://www.mepc.org/journal/9012_corrigan.asp

    I hope you find the article of interest. Please pass it on to your friends and contacts. My thanks to DV for publishing these dissident Jewish voices.

  17. dan e said on April 19th, 2010 at 12:28pm #

    Mr Corrigan,

    Sorry, apparently you misunderstood my comment, which was addressed to our ally Rehmat, not to yourself.

    Excerpted from Rehmat’s comment: “…The great majority of World Zionist Congress leaders were professed atheists – if one read the early Zionist literature, one will find that these leaders hated their fellow Jews and called them “parasites”, “unclean”, “trouble makers” and “dogs”. Lenni Brenner and Theodor Herzl being some of those leaders.”
    Just as you say, Brenner has been for many years a leading anti-Zionist. His books and encyclopaedic knowledge of Zionism & related issues have been a major part of my own education, especially regarding Jabotinsky and Revisionist Zionism.
    But since I have your attention, permit me to say that it’s quite a stretch to call Steven Zunes a “critic of Zionism”, since he like Chomsky goes to great pains to defend “Israel’s” “right to exist”, and to poohpooh all those who present evidence showing the extent of Isreali/Zionist Power Config. domination of the US foreign/military policymaking process. There are a number of others in your list who it may be accurate to call “dissidents” from the official US government/mainstream media mythology about the Zionist Entity, but who, far from being consistently opposed to Zionism, actually advance a range of “alternative” , somewhat more “sophisticated” justifications for Zionist colonialism.
    So I congratulate you for all your research, but can’t totally support all your conclusions.
    Thanks,
    Dan

  18. Deadbeat said on April 19th, 2010 at 7:27pm #

    Mr. Corrigan writes …

    Faber’s book contains a series of interviews with leading American dissident Jews: Noam Chomsky, Steve Quester, Joel Kovel, Norton Mezvinsky, Ora Wise, Norman Finkelstein, Phyllis Bennis, Adam Shapiro, Daniel Boyarin, Rabbi David Weiss, and includes a speech and an essay by Marc Ellis.

    This list is not representative of true anti-Zionist Jews. Among those listed are among the best known apologists for Zionism and their rhetoric has permitted Zionism to flourish among the “Left” in the U.S. primarily because they deflected scrutiny away from powerful Zionist Jews that wield tremendous power and influence on the U.S. foreign policy and political economy in general.

    Those who are truly anti-Zionist Jews are Lenni Brenner, Joel Kovel, Jeffrey Blankfort, James Petras, and Louis Farrakhan (no joke — look it up!).

  19. hayate said on April 20th, 2010 at 1:05am #

    This article by Edward C. Corrigan is a very useful reference. I’m glad I took the time to read it through.

  20. Edward C. Corrigan said on April 20th, 2010 at 4:50pm #

    To Deadbeat:

    The article is about Jewish Critics of Zionism and of Israel’s Policies Toward the Palestinians. It is not about anti-Zionist Jews. Liberal Zionists who oppose the Occupation are also included. Is James Petras Jewish? He clearly qualifies as a critic of Israel’s policies. Is Alexander Coburn Jewish? I would like confirmation of this point and a reliable reference I cannot believe that Louis Farrakhan, the Black Muslim leader, is Jewish or is of Jewish Descent.

  21. Deadbeat said on April 20th, 2010 at 5:30pm #

    @ Mr. Corrigan,

    And your point is what? Here is what I responded to …

    Faber’s book contains a series of interviews with leading American dissident Jews:

    These “leading American dissident Jews” is an oxymoron. They assume the role of “dissident” and to describe them as such is mere propaganda.

    * Phyllis Bennis was instrumental in the break up of the anti-war movement.
    * in 2004 Howard Zinn supported war monger John Kerry via ABB over the peace candidate Ralph Nader.
    * Noam Chomsky is a Zionist.

    The people who I listed are REAL critics of Zionism.

    Here’s the link to the article by Lanni Brenner where he reveals Louis Farrakhan’s Jewish lineage

  22. Deadbeat said on April 21st, 2010 at 2:05am #

    Here’s a link of a very recent interview with Jeffery Blankfort

    Ever since his 1970 assignment to photograph Palestinian refugee camps, Jeffrey Blankfort has been a committed anti-Zionist. Jeff is less well known than he should be, though he frequently publishes in the alternative media and has a regular, weekly program on KZYX radio in Mendocino, California. He maintains a rare intellectual consistency, being unafraid to put rational argument above political loyalties (so, for example, regarding approaches toward the Israel Lobby he praises President George H.W. Bush but condemns Noam Chomsky). It was a pleasure to talk with Jeff and I wish more people had his moral integrity. Total runtime an hour and twenty one minutes. Enjoy!

  23. dan e said on April 21st, 2010 at 10:54am #

    Mr Corrigan,

    Clarity is what people of goodwill need. To be able to discern who/what is served by the statements/activities of political actors. Your article provides a lot of very good information, but no clarity about what it all means.

    Terms like “critic” and “dissident” unavoidably involve the discussion in considerable ambiguity. One can be a “critic” of US or Zionist Entity policies without necessarily being opposed to the goals of said policies.

    People need to know who is a friend or an ally, who is an enemy, and who is just confused. Your article provides a lot of raw information, but also perpetuates a lot of confusion.
    “What Side Are You On”, that is the question.

  24. Edward C. Corrigan said on April 23rd, 2010 at 11:06am #

    It is better to let the Jewish critics, anti-Zionist, post-Zionist and even Liberal Zionists speak for themselves. People can decide on the issue pf rights for the Palestinians based on the information and opinion provided by the Jewish writers, academics etc. If you insist on a purity test you will discredit your self and alienate many allies and potential allies. My views are not particularly important and certainly not as important as many of the Jewish writers quoted in the article. The more important question is what have you done to help the Palestinians. My record of activity and results stands very clearly. If you have done more than me I applaud you. If you have not then you should not criticize others and hide behind a nom de plume when you do so. After all we are supposed to be on the same side. Save your critical comments and energy for the opponents of human rights for the Palestinians.