- My thoughts as well - because no legitimate 'state' could
consider remaining outside the community of nations, for over fifty
years, while using the barbaric savagery that Zionist Israel
has chosen to pursue, against the original occupants of the now blood-soaked
nation that was once called Palestine. Zionist Isreal 'must be dismantled'
to keep the world from coming apart.
- ---Forwarded Message---
- From: World View News Service
- Sent: Dec 24, 2008
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Subject: Israel has lost right to exist
- Norway up in arms after author asserts Israel has
lost right to exist
- By Assaf Uni
- Haaretz Correspondent
- An article in a leading Norwegian newspaper last weekend
lambasted Israel and Judaism and said Israel has lost its right to
exist in its present form.
- Entitled "God's chosen people," the article
by author Jostein Gaarder in Aftenposten is raising a storm in Norway.
Gaarder, author of the book "Sophie's World," links the
Israel Defense Forces' acts in Lebanon to Jewish history and foresees
the coming dismantling of the state as it exists today, with the
Jews becoming refugees.
- In an interview with Haaretz Gaarder said Thursday that
he was misunderstood. "As John Kennedy declared in Germany 'I
am a Berliner' ¬ I say now 'I am a Jew,'" he said.
- The article compares Israel's government, the Afghan
Taliban regime and South African apartheid, and states, "We
no longer recognize the State of Israel" and "the State
of Israel in its current form is history."
- "We call child murderers 'child murderers,' and
will never accept that they have a divine or historic mandate excusing
their outrages," Gaarder writes. "Shame on ethnic cleansing,
shame on every terrorist strike against civilians, be it carried
out by Hamas, Hezbollah or the State of Israel!"
- Gaarder repeatedly refers to the role Judaism plays in
Israel's territorial aspirations, writing, "We don't believe
in the notion of God's chosen people. We laugh at this nation's fancies
and weep over its misdeeds."
- He writes, "It is the State of Israel that fails
to recognize, respect or defer to the internationally lawful Israeli
state of 1948. Israel wants more; more water and more villages. To
obtain this, there are those who want, with God's assistance, a final
solution to the Palestinian problem."
- The article has triggered off thousands of comments and
dozens of stormy debates in the Norwegian media. It also has sparked
off a debate about Gaarder's alleged anti-Semitic tendencies and
the right to criticize Israel. The Jewish journalist and music
critic Mona Levin spoke out in public against Gaarder and said she
was shocked by the Norwegian government's silence. She blasted the
cabinet for not denouncing what she described as "the most appalling
thing I've read since 'Mein Kampf.'"
- "We're dealing with an ignorant man, a hate-filled
man who derides Judaism," she said in an interview from Oslo.
Levin said it was unacceptable that a man of such international repute
(26 million copies of his book have been sold) could attack an entire
ethnic group and that politicians would remain silent.
- "This is a classic anti-Semitic manifesto, which
cannot even disguise itself as criticism of Israel," said Professor
Dina Porat, head of the Stephen Roth Institute for the Study of Contemporary
Anti- Semitism and Racism at Tel Aviv University. "The writer
does not address the conflict in its contemporary context but reaches
back thousands of years to assert that the Jewish people have traits
of cruelty that have remained unchanged and account for the current
war," she says.
- Porat says that according to the European Union, denying
Israel's right to exist ¬ arguing that its existence is racist
¬ is an anti- Semitic statement. She also finds in Gaarder's text the
use of classic anti-Semitic symbols, like infanticide.
- "I've been head of the Institute for the Study of
Contemporary Anti- Semitism for 15 years and it's not every day that I
get to read such a radical document, in terms of its content and
rhetoric," she said.
- Gaarder writes, among other things, "We do not believe
that Israel mourns 40 killed Lebanese children more than it has lamented
for more than 3,000 years 40 years in the desert. We note that many
Israelis celebrate such triumphs like they once cheered the scourges
of the Lord as 'fitting punishment' for the people of Egypt."
- He writes that the first Zionist terrorists started operating
in the days of Jesus.
- Speaking to Haaretz on Tuesday, a day before he stopped
talking to the media, Gaarder said he was misunderstood and emphasized
that he is a friend of Israel and the Jews.
- "I think what Hezbollah is doing is terrible,"
he said, adding that he supports Israel's right to exist as a national
homeland for the Jews since 1948.
- Gaarder said he does not question Israel's right to exist,
"but not as an apartheid state." He said he could understand
how his article could be interpreted as "anti-Jewish" and
admitted that if he were to rewrite it, he would change a few things.
- He is aware he has hurt the Jews in Norway, he said,
adding that he would make sure the article is not translated into
other languages. However, Gaarder refused to retract publicly his
- Aftenposten's political editor Harald Stanghelle said
he saw no problem publishing Gaarder's article.
- "Of course I don't agree with what he says,"
he said. "But an open debate on the issue is better than a covert
- "Gaarder's voice is important in the Norwegian discourse
and it was right to publish the article," he said.
- Meanwhile, the furor over Gaarder's article coincides
with a series of anti-Semitic incidents in Norway, including the
desecration of an Oslo Synagogue and cemeteries and the assault and
battery of a skullcap-wearing youngster.
- Quotes from article were taken from an unofficial translation
- Norwegian ex-premier counters anti-Semitism accusations,
slams Israel Haaretz Israel <http://whtt.org/index.php?news=2&id=2712>http://whtt.org/index.php?news=2&id=2712
- Ex-Norwegian prime minister Kåre Willoch spoke
out Thursday against Israel and a group of Israeli scholars who earlier
this week held a symposium in Jerusalem devoted to accusing the Scandinavian
countries of racism, anti-Semitism and Israel-hatred.
- "It's a traditional deflection tactic aimed at diverting
attention from the real problem, which is Israel's well-documented
and incontestable abuse of Palestinians," Willoch, who presided
as Norway's prime minister in the 1980s, told a Norwegian daily.
- Willoch, a long-time critic of Israel, was reacting to
accusations leveled at an event hosted on Tuesday by the Jerusalem
Center for Public Affairs, which, as reported by Haaretz, is described
by the organizers as "probably Israel's first comprehensive
discussion into Scandinavia's approach to the Jewish people and state."
- The English-language event attracted approximately 50
listeners, including at least five Scandinavian journalists, who
later wrote about the event.
- "Norway is the most anti-Semitic country in Scandinavia,"
Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, a scholar of Western European anti-Semitism
from the Center said at the symposium.
- Gerstenfeld, a Holocaust survivor who immigrated to Israel
many years ago from Holland, projected cartoons he had found in Norwegian
mainstream press over the past few years.
- One cartoon, which appeared in Dagsavisen, the same paper
which published the ex-premier's reaction, showed an ultra-Orthodox
Jew engraving "thou shall murder" into an alternative Decalogue.
Another cartoon from the daily Dagbladet showed Ehud Olmert dressed
up as a guard at a death camp, smiling and holding a rifle.
- "These cartoons are one of many ugly anti-Semitic
phenomena in Norway," he said.
- "There is something wrong with a society which is
willing to accept these Nazi cartoons. With a Jewish population of
only 1,300, Norway has led the pack in anti-Semitism before, during
and after WWII."
- In his reaction, former premier Willoch said: "Anyone
who accuses Norway of anti-Semitism is closing his eyes and ears."
Other Norwegian politicians were also quoted in the article in similar
- Besides Gerstenfeld, the humble-sized event offered two
more speakers: Zvi Mazel, a former ambassador to Sweden who spoke
of a "deep-rooted" anti-Semitism in Sweden, and Dr. Efraim
Zuroff, the U.S.-born director of the Wiesenthal Center in Israel
- which co- sponsored the event - who addressed Norway and Sweden's failure
to prosecute Nazi war criminals.
- Earlier this year, the three men contributed to a recently-published
book entitled "Behind the Humanitarian Mask," which served as
the kernel for the symposium. The book accuses the Scandinavian countries
of adhering to a form of "a white supremacist" approach, which
views non-whites such as the Palestinians as eternal victims and
aid- recipients who are not responsible for their actions.
- The Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish and Danish ambassadors
were invited to the event but did not come. However, five Scandinavian
journalists were in attendance to counter some of the allegations.
- "Why is criticism of Israel automatically considered
anti-Semitism," Louise Stigsgaard Nissen, Middle East Bureau
chief for the Danish daily Berlingske Tidende, asked. "Why can't
one criticize Israel as one criticizes the U.S. without being called
- While Zuroff argued that Israelis generally accept harsh
criticism when they do not suspect anti-Semitism, Gerstenfeld quoted
the European Union's definition of anti-Semitism as a double
standard. "One cannot criticize Israel for things other countries
also do while refraining from criticizing those countries," he said.
- Another Danish reporter said that by closing Gaza to
reporters when international organizations speak of a humanitarian
crisis there, Israel was "inevitably rendering itself suspect
in human rights violations" and "inviting hostile treatment."
- Each such statement was received by the audience with
disapproving mumbles, until the guests began to argue aloud with
the Scandinavians - who argued right back. "It's good to see
some action around here," one JCPA regular said. "Usually
these lectures end with a few approving nods and hear-hears."