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Confronting Jew-Hatred at Daily Kos: A Jew Stands Up

Posted on August 31 2010 3:00 pm
Mike Lumish is a teacher, a recent PhD in American History, a resident of San Francisco, a liberal, and until recently a Democrat, who is thoroughly disgusted with the anti-Zionism and Israel Hatred promoted by the Left... He also tends to smoke too much.

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I continue to maintain that Daily Kos is the premier progressive website on the Internet and is thus representative of progressive-left thinking, more generally. That’s why it pisses me off. As someone who comes out of the Progressive Movement I am horrified to see that anti-Zionism and Israel hatred (with its shrouded anti-Semitism) is a perfectly acceptable part of the discourse within the Progressive Movement. It’s entirely alienating and will slowly erode Jewish support for that movement, if not Jewish support for the Democratic Party.

One of the accusations that Jews perpetually face on the progressive-left is the notion that Zionism equals racism. This means that after one-third of the Jewish people were slaughtered by the Nazis due to issues of “race” the Jews were racist for coming together in our own self-defense with the creation of Israel in 1948. How vicious is that? My father’s side of the family comes from a small town in the western Ukraine known as Medzhybizh. {It also, coincidentally, happens to be the birthplace of the Hasidic Judaism.}

My father’s parents got out of there after the pogroms of the early twentieth century, but the rest of his side of the family stayed. That was a mistake because the Nazis rolled through during WWII. There was only a few thousand people who lived there, both Jews and non-Jews. The Nazis put the local population to work on road building and when they were done they lined up every Jew in town and shot them all dead, including all my relatives.

If Zionism equal racism, this means that the Jews who fled the late 19th century pogroms of Russia or the Nazi Holocaust of WWII were “racist” for doing so. It means that if we allowed ourselves to be slaughtered then, and only then, could we be free of progressive-left accusations of racism.

And this leads me to Volleyboy1 and Daily Kos.

In a recent exchange between pro-Israel Volleyboy1 and anti-Israel remi, remi argued that “ethnic cleansing” was essential to Zionism. This is the Zionism equals racism equation. He yanks some quotes out of context by Theodore Herzl to makes his case and claims the following:

I guess if you think ethnic cleansing is a “liberal” value, then what can I say.

And if believe that my getting older will mean that I’ll accept things like ethnic cleansing as a part of history that should be put in “context” without making amends for it, you’re wrong. I never will, so wait all you want, and you should perhaps figure out why it is that you believe that such things expressed by Herzl should not be condemned in the strongest language possible.

remi, like many on the progressive-left, thinks that Hertzl was a racist and thus the entire movement was racist and that the Jews must therefore “make amends.”

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