Thursday, July 27, 2017

Germany: Israel supporters are the enemy within, Social Democrat says

Via The Jerusalem Post (Benjamin Weinthal):
The Ministry of Economic Affairs for the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia started an investigation on Tuesday of an employee and Social Democratic Party official who said Israel supporters undermine the Federal Republic, sparking accusations of antisemitism.

Stefan Grönebaum – division head covering work and social policies, demography and integration – labeled pro-Israel members of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) and other supporters of the Jewish state , an “organized, good networked ‘fifth column’ in the interests of Israel’s policies.”

Dr. Efraim Zuroff, head of Jerusalem office of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday: “These types of comments are clearly antisemitic and should be examined by the SPD. Their expert is antisemitic and is disseminating an antisemitic view.” (...)

On Facebook, in a rambling tirade against the legitimacy of the Jewish state, Grönebaum wrote “Zionists are attached to a colonialist doctrine... They mean that the land of the others belongs to them.”

Grönebaum’s written assaults on Israel were triggered by a comment from Sercan Aydilek, an activist who campaigns against modern antisemitism in Germany and who described himself as a Zionist.

Dr. Elvira U. Groezinger, head of the German branch of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East, told the Post,” It is remarkable indeed that a member of the Social Democratic Party and an employee in a ministry of a German federal state publicly dares to delegitimize Israel in a language which is directly taken over from the Nazi vocabulary and to use it in an openly antisemitic way in his polemics against the Jewish state which is a democratic one, contrary to the totalitarian regimes in the Arab countries.”

Tanya Aliza, who said she was a German-Israeli Social Democrat, thanked the people involved in the Facebook conversation for their criticism of Grönebaum.
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