Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Belgium:Anti-racism activist blames Israel for Muslim hatred of Jews, compares Zionism to ISIS ideology

Dyab Abou Jahjah is an extremist antisemite.  He's also a minority-rights activist, a distinguished columnist in one of Belgium's top papers, and a respected partner for Belgium's anti-racism organizations.  The ones tasked with fighting antisemitism.

Belgians find it perplexing when Jews say he's antisemitic, because he only wants to kill all Jews in Israel (a sentiment he's shared quite a few times).   A decade ago he also organized pogroms in Jewish neighborhoods in Belgium, but apparently that doesn't make him an antisemite either.

Yesterday, Abou Jahjah posted a post in English on his Facebook in which he blamed Israel for Muslim and Arab antisemitism.  He then went on to compare Israel to Islamic State (also a recurring sentiment by him).  Except Israel is much worse, because most Jews support Israel, while only a fraction of Muslims support ISIS.

When young Arabs and Muslims express hatred towards Jews it is 99% of the time an echo of Israel portraying itself as the Jewish state and them believing it. This is very regrettable but it is not antisemitism. It is a lack of politisation and can only be remedied by explaining Zionism to them as a political racist movement that hijacks the identity of the Jews just like "Daesh" hijacks that of the Muslims.

With the clear difference that support for Israel and Zionism is unfortunately mainstream among jews. While support for Daesh is marginal among muslims. Not only that, Arabs and muslims are waging war against Daesh. But either way, yes young people say stupid uninformed things often out of emotionality.

I wrote about this Belgian hypocrisy in the past, but it's worth repeating. 

It is not surprising that a Hezbollah activist in Belgium hates Jews.  It's not surprising that he led riots in Jewish neighborhoods in which protesters burned Jews in effigy, or that he posted Holocaust cartoons accusing Jews of making it all up, or that he supports Holocaust deniers, or that he supports the genocide of Jews in Israel.

I really don't expect much from people like Abou Jahjah.

What is surprising is that the Belgian establishment supports him, including those people whose job it is to protect Jews from antisemites.   The city of Ghent invited him to speak about racism, as did Amnesty International and the Belgian Human Rights League.   He also has a weekly column in De Standaard.

The Belgian Human Rights League got really upset at me for calling them out on their support of antisemites.  Because the people whose job it is to fight antisemitism in Belgium prefer to team up with a Hezbollah terrorist, rather than to listen to Jews who complain about it.

It really doesn't matter how many times Belgian politicians say that they are serious about fighting antisemitism.  As long as Belgian society and Belgian anti-racism organizations accept Abou Jahjah as one of their own and as an acceptable voice in society - they are sending a clear message to the  Jews in Belgium: You are on your own.

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