Friday, April 28, 2017
Belgium: Lawmaker says Israel is the country of Belgian Jewish community leader
It is common in Europe to view Jews as Israelis and as "eternal" foreigners and immigrants. At the same time, many also believe that Jews have no rights to Israel.
The late Ulrich Beck, professor of sociology at the University of Munich, wrote in 2003 an article about antisemitism arguing that the majority of the Germans and of the Europeans do not accept the distinction between Jews and Israelis, although such a distinction is essential for German-Jewish reconciliation. He relates that in the course of an informal chat after a talk by the President of Israel, Ignaz Bubis, the chairman of the German Council of Jewish Association, was told as a compliment that the address by "his" President had been excellent. Ignaz Bubis replied that talks by Roman Herzog, the then President of Germany, were always excellent. His interlocutor replied: "No, no, I'm referring to Mr. Weizman, your President".
Christian Laporte of La Libre Belgique reports that during a debate on the limitations of ritual slaughter of animals, Véronique Waroux a lawmaker of the Walloon regional Parliament told Philippe Markiewicz, president of the Consistoire organization of Belgian Jewry, that she had just returned from "his" country, i.e. Israel. Thus implying that Jews are not Belgian citizens and that they are citizens of the State of Israel. Unsurprisingly Waroux is a Israel-basher.
Again unsurprisingly, there were no protests.
Challenged by a reader of this blog, she adamantly refused to apologize or express regrets, instead she was furious at his daring to make such a request.
Mr Philippe Markiewicz is a Brussels-based lawyer and his family has lived in Belgium for six generations.
Another prominent Belgian Pierre Galand, a notorious Israel-basher, explained in 2002 that Joël Rubinfeld, a Jewish leader, had not been invited to attend a conference because