Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Denmark: Jewish journalist discovers he's not allowed to report on Israel

Martin Krasnik's new book "Fucking jøde" (Fucking Jew) describes his Jewish background, and the storm that was unleashed after he, a Jewish Danish journalist, tried to report on the Middle East conflict.

Until the summer of 2014 he would have denied there's any antisemitism in Denmark, but in August, two interviews on the Israel-Palestine conflict started off a flood of hate mail.  The two interviews were with Middle East expert Michael Irving Jensen and with Norwegian doctor Mads Gilbert.

Krasnik says he's been attacked before for interviews, but this time it was something completely different.  People didn't attack his opinions, they attacked his background.

Ten minutes into the interview with Jensen, he started getting comments on Facebook, Twitter and email about his Jewish background.

Krasnik says that it's not the first time he was told he should stay away from the topic, but it was the first time it was said so loudly and violently. He felt he couldn't express himself anymore.  He felt he was shoved into a certain identity, and it took him time to realize that this wasn't him at all.

This storm of criticism didn't only come from Palestinians, but also from ethnic Danes.  "It's as close to antisemitism as can be.  It might be that those people aren't antisemitic, but the idea that because I'm Jewish, I can't do journalism on the subject - that's antisemitic".

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