Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Different Standards

Perhaps I'm missing something here:
"A senior British diplomat has been arrested after he allegedly launched an abusive tirade against Israel and Judaism at a London gym, police said Tuesday," the Associated Press reports.

The AP adds, "Rowan Laxton, the 47-year-old head of the Foreign Office's South Asia desk, was held on suspicion of inciting religious hatred - an offense that carries a maximum jail term of seven years. He allegedly used foul language as he criticized Israel's conduct during the conflict in Gaza at a fitness center at the London Business School last month.

According to the Times of London, "The diplomat, 47-year-old Rowan Laxton, allegedly shouted 'f***ing Israelis, f***ing Jews' while watching television reports of the Israeli attack on Gaza last month." (emphasis added)
It seems that one man's emotional outburst against a foreign country warrants arrest whereas the slaughter of 400 children in Gaza is a ho hum.

However, the more serious problem that this exemplifies is the almost complete melding of Jews and Israel. Over and over again this has been successfully used to suppress any real discussion of the ongoing savagery of the IDF. (e.g. dropping a million cluster bomblets in Southern Lebanon on the last day the the 2006 war.)

I wish I had a nickel for every time I have heard someone in America condemn Muslims and/or Arabs. A whole population grew up thinking that the words Palestinian and Terrorist were the same thing.

And then there is this:
"The report showed a 26% rise in racist incidents against Arabs in 2007, with twice as many Jews claiming feelings of hatred against Arabs. 74% of Jewish Israeli youth believe Arabs to be “dirty”. And 78% of the adult Jewish population in Israel does not think that Arab political parties should be included in the government." (emphasis added)

2 comments:

Felix Grant said...

The separation of individual, race, and state is crucial, I agree.

Under British "incitement to racial hatred" laws, Laxton could face prosecution for the "f***ing Jews" component but not the "f***ing Israelis" part. Which, it seems to to me, is right and proper.

Not only is the merging of "Jewish" and "Israeli" (as you rightly point out) a way to muffle or silence criticism of the state of Israel, it is also an injustice to those Jews and Israelis (and they do exist) who oppose the state's policies and actions.

Dr. C said...

Felix,
Yes, we should recognize these brave people who do try and mitigate the damage done to both Israeli and Palistinian children. Unfortunately elections spell bad news . It remains to be seen if Brown and Obama embrace the new Israeli administration.