2012 April » ADL Blogs
April 26, 2012 0

Norman Finkelstein to Speak at KinderUSA Fundraiser in Long Beach

Nor­man G. Finkel­stein, an anti-Israel aca­d­e­mic whose career has been marked by a vit­ri­olic hatred of Zion­ism and Israel, is sched­uled to be the “Spe­cial Guest Speaker” at the 10th anniver­sary cel­e­bra­tion of KinderUSA, an orga­ni­za­tion whose stated mis­sion is to “alle­vi­ate the suf­fer­ing of chil­dren and their fam­i­lies in Pales­tine and beyond.”

The May 5 event in Long Beach, billed as: “A Decade of Giv­ing,” is endorsed by the Los Angeles-based Mus­lim Pub­lic Affairs Coun­cil (MPAC). In a press release for the event, MPAC’s Senior Advi­sor Dr. Maher Hathout said, “I think every­one who comes will walk out informed and inspired as well…you will lis­ten to per­spec­tives that you will not hear on CNN or the offi­cial media that is always giv­ing us our nar­ra­tive. It’s about time to hear the nar­ra­tive com­ing from our­selves to ourselves.”

Finkel­stein, who is fre­quently invited to speak on cam­pus about the Israeli-Palestinian con­flict, has a long his­tory of por­tray­ing Holo­caust edu­ca­tion and sur­vivor com­pen­sa­tion as a cal­cu­lated attempt to “immu­nize Israel from crit­i­cism” for alleged human rights abuses.

He fre­quently evokes offen­sive com­par­isons between Israel and Nazi Ger­many. On his web­site in 2009, for exam­ple, he re-posted a col­lec­tion of images of Jew­ish per­se­cu­tion in Nazi Ger­many jux­ta­posed with images of Pales­tin­ian suf­fer­ing. The title of the Web page is “The grand­chil­dren of Holo­caust sur­vivors from World War II are doing to the Pales­tini­ans exactly what was done to them by Nazi Germany…”

Finkel­stein has also expressed sup­port for the ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tions Hamas and Hezbol­lah. In an inter­view with a Lebanese tele­vi­sion sta­tion in Jan­u­ary 2008, Finkel­stein said, “I was of course happy to meet the Hezbol­lah peo­ple, because it is a point of view that is rarely heard in the United States. I have no prob­lem say­ing that I do want to express sol­i­dar­ity with them, and I am not going to be a cow­ard or a hyp­ocrite about it.”

At a speak­ing appear­ance at the Uni­ver­sity of Den­ver in Sep­tem­ber 2011, Finkel­stein attempted to legit­imize Hamas by com­par­ing the group to Gandhi: “Gandhi’s solu­tion is the same as Hamas, word-for-word.”

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April 26, 2012 0

Does Jimmy Carter Endorse BDS?

It is no secret that for­mer U.S. Pres­i­dent Jimmy Carter is harshly crit­i­cal of Israeli poli­cies in the West Bank. There are now, how­ever, indi­ca­tions that Carter may have entered a new realm of anti-Israel advo­cacy with an implied endorse­ment of the cam­paign to boy­cott, divest and sanc­tion (BDS) Israel.

As quoted by Al-Jazeera in an April 25 piece, Carter states that he thinks the BDS move­ment has “been effec­tive on a wide-ranging basis, oth­er­wise the Israelis would not be so upset about it” and that it is “gain­ing in strength.”

Just as Carter’s 2007 book, “Pales­tine Peace Not Apartheid,” attempted to main­stream the apartheid anal­ogy com­monly used within the anti-Israel move­ment, his appar­ent val­i­da­tion of BDS could lead oth­ers to believe that this extreme and divi­sive tac­tic is legitimate.

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April 20, 2012 0

Incidents of Anti-Semitism Continue to Mark Occupy Movement

With the arrival of warmer weather, Occupy Wall Street protests around the coun­try have begun to pick up in recent weeks. While reports of ram­pant anti-Semitism at last summer’s protests were overblown, two iso­lated inci­dents this week indi­cate that anti-Semites con­tinue to take advan­tage of the Occupy move­ment and use it as a con­ve­nient plat­form to air their views.

On Mon­day, an African-American indi­vid­ual attend­ing an Occupy protest in Wash­ing­ton, D.C. made sev­eral anti-Semitic com­ments, includ­ing loudly remark­ing that Jew­ish peo­ple “try to get ahead of Black peo­ple, like they’re bet­ter than us.”

The indi­vid­ual claimed to be part of a group called the United Occupy Move­ment. A descrip­tion of the group on its Web site reads, “We are the young, old, male & female, no-D and Ph.D., Chris­t­ian, Mus­lim, Aethi­est [sic] and eth­ni­cally diverse who should have a greater voice accord­ing to our Constitution.”

And just yes­ter­day, a harshly anti-Semitic car­toon was posted to a Face­book page that claims to be the “Com­mu­nity Page” for Occupy Tampa. The car­toon fea­tured a pic­ture of a stereotypical-looking obser­vant Jew dri­ving a car while hold­ing Pres­i­dent Obama’s head in one hand and a steer­ing wheel in the other fash­ioned out of the United Nations’ logo. The image evokes clas­sic anti-Semitic myths of Jew­ish con­trol, in this case of the U.S. gov­ern­ment and the UN. Admin­is­tra­tors of the page have since apol­o­gized for the post­ing, say­ing they’ve had “some intru­sion issues” but that the admin­is­tra­tor who posted the image has now been banned from the page.

The very same car­toon appeared in Al Watan, a Qatar-based news­pa­per, on Sep­tem­ber 30, 2011 at the height of Pales­tin­ian efforts to uni­lat­er­ally declare state­hood at the UN. The car­toon is the work of an artist named Eliot whose anti-Semitic and anti-Israel car­toons are reg­u­larly pub­lished in Al Watan.

ADL reported on a vari­ety of anti-Semitic and anti-Israel inci­dents that took place at Occupy protests last sum­mer and fall. These inci­dents con­sis­tently appear to be the acts of indi­vid­u­als seek­ing to exploit the pop­u­lar social protest move­ment and inject it with their own hate­ful views.

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