With all the violence in the world, with the systematic extermination of Christians throughout the Middle East, with Russian and China showing their true colors, why must it always come back to Israel?
Edward Alexander, Professor Emeritus at the University of Washington, spoke of those who criticize Israel “as the sole ‘anachronistic’ state in an otherwise progressive multicultural world,” who can’t sense, even subconsciously, that they have a “potential kinship with the genocidal inclined and not-at-all progressive president of Iran. In law, such kinship is called ‘accessory to murder.’ Too many writers and pundits today are obsessed, almost pathologically, by the conviction that Israel is the most evil country that ever has existed, and that its removal from the family of nations is a precondition of world peace.”
The left has a sick obsession with Israel and yet they claim it’s not anti-Semitism – they don’t hate Jews. It is “amazing to think when they strike against Jewish rights, kosher meat, circumcision, wearing a Kippa, allowing Jews to live in the lands of their fathers, ignoring violent acts against Jews, force Jews to work on Shabbat, deny the Holocaust, support and arm those who want to destroy Jews, or encouraging the boycotting of Jewish products,” wrote Bobby Bown, a former adviser on Diaspora Affairs to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, “they say it has nothing to do with anti-Semitism. Can they explain what anti-Semitism is?”
Anti-Semitism was a term coined in the late 19th century in Germany as a more scientific-sounding term for Judenhass, Jew hatred. It can be manifested in many ways, rom expressions of hatred of or discrimination against individuals to organized violent attacks by mobs, state police, or even military attacks on entire Jewish communities or the state of Israel.
With the spread of liberation theology in the U.S. anti-Semitism became fashionable. Along with pushing a social justice message, liberation theology teaches Jesus with a socialist tilt which according to Amy Jill-Levine, a New Testament scholar, left Christians with a dilemma. As long as Christians could believe that Jesus was fully divine, there was no need to distinguish him explicitly from the Jews but once the church met the ‘Enlightenment’ and the secular academy, Jesus no longer looked quite so divine.
And when you remove the divinity of Christ is there any reason or need to even go to church? For liberals, the answer was to remake the image of Christ to fit the new gospel. And this, according to Dr. Levine, meant reading first century Judaism as a “noxious” mix of warlike theology, obsessive purity compulsions and clannish racism. The perfect storm for the Israel boycotts now required only a dovetailing of the liberation theology call to action, and the liberal churches’ caricature of Judaism, morphed itself onto the State of Israel.
According to Rev. Naim Ateek, founder of the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Centre in Jerusalem, and co-author of the Kairos Palestine manifesto, published in 2009, once the liberal churches pushed the idea that “the Jews killed Jesus” it was easy to make people believe that the Israeli government was reenacting the Passion on Palestinian children. Ateek’s manifesto was endorsed quickly by the socialist World Council of Churches who immediately called upon its member churches to boycott Israel and decry the “sin of Israeli occupation.”
So why does the left hate Israel so much? Liberalism was and is a competing religion to Christianity and Judaism. The very existence of Israel is a stench in their nostrils because the very the existence of Israel argues more eloquently for the existence of God and the truth of the Bible than any philosopher or theologian.
Israel is a rebuke to the Left’s worldview, because its miraculous existence suggests that Israelis and Christians are right – there is a transcendent God who is actively working on their behalf (or rather that they are working on His behalf). Throughout the great Diaspora the Jews never lost faith, and many Christians believed God’s promise that they would eventually be restored to their land – against all human reason.
Israel’s seemingly miraculous rise from the grave in 1948 and her continued existence, in spite of endless hostility on the part of the Islamic world and indeed even in Europe, justifies faith in God while undercutting the belief of the left.
There is nothing more vicious than a liberal thwarted.
Sources: Israel’s Boycotters are Anti-Semites, by Ron Torossian; Why the Liberals Hate Israel, by Timothy Birdnow