It is because these protests aren’t just against Israel. They are also against the Jewish People. Israel’s Operation Cast Lead at the close of 2008 – a legitimate act of self-defense by any and all international standards – evoked universal resentment and hatred. Around the world, synagogues and Jewish graves were desecrated and anti-Semitic chants were shouted at protests. In April 2009, a swastika was found painted on a Jewish fraternity house at the University of Florida and on American campuses, and comparisons continue to be made between Israelis and Nazis, and between Palestinian refugee camps and Auschwitz.
In all this, it is quite clear that distinctions between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism are increasingly blurred. Taken in its totality, Israel not only has no right to defend itself in response to terrorist attacks, but it has no right to exist – which suggests that missile attacks on Israel’s civilian population are not only justified, but desirable.
The lies perpetrated by otherwise respectable international religious, educational and political bodies not to mention much of the Western media against the only democracy in the Middle East are most notable in the double standards that are applied to Israel as opposed to states that have slaughtered their own peoples for decades with absolute immunity from international censure.
It is true, of course, that criticizing Israel does not make one an anti-Semite any more than criticizing the government of France makes one anti-French. But it’s one thing to criticize France, and something else to declare the French nation illegitimate and to advocate its destruction. Martin Luther King, Jr. once referred to Israel as “one of the great outposts of democracy in the world,” with an “incontestable right to exist,” but on Canadian and U.S. campuses today, he would be a pariah.
Funny how these campus activists never seem to mention the Syrian de jure occupation of Lebanon, or Saudi funding of global jihad, or the treatment of Saudi women, or the crushing of all democratic dissent in Iran. They have no difficulty bemoaning capital punishment in the United States, but say nothing when the Palestinians routinely execute suspected Israeli collaborators including the mothers of young children, or when Hamas throws Fatah supporters to their deaths off 15-story buildings. These demonstrators have no problem with the anti-democratic regimes that govern the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Islamic Republic of Mauritania or the Islamic Republic of Iran, but they are incensed at the idea of a Jewish state of Israel despite such a state being the only true democracy in the Middle East.