IS THERE SUCH A THING AS " ANTI- ANTI-ANTI-SEMITISM " ?
Milt Rosenberg over at Milt's File
reports that the well-known academic, public intellectual and Communitarian guru Amitai Etzioni has been unable to find an outlet to publish this piece
that ties Mel Gibson's film The Passion of the Christ
to the wider revival of anti-semitism, particularly in Europe
Normally, I would not give Dr. Etzioni a platform on Zenpundit because being moderately libertarian, I am not
sympathetic to Communitarianism
( more on the philosophical roots of that movement here
). Nor do I agree with Etzioni that Mel Gibson's film will be a slick, 21st century Hollywood analog to Jud Suss
but like Dr. Rosenberg I do find it a little odd that a thinker of Etzioni's caliber could not find a publisher anywhere who was willing to accept such a highly topical op-ed piece. Editors have space to fill and in the main they'd rather publish articles from someone like Etzioni or Diane Ravitch or Robert Reich than one by unknown assistant prof from Big State school U. Particularly,if like Etzioni's, the op-ed piece is a provocative one likely to grab attention for the newspaper.
Back in the 1970's, in the aftermath of Vietnam, a surly " anti - anti-communist"
attitude migrated from leftist, intellectual, circles where it was fashionable to believe that Alger Hiss was a martyr and the Rosenbergs had been framed, to the wider media culture. Anti-anti-communism was not so much an argument or a position as it was a reflexive, emotional response of hostility toward any expression of views critical of Communist states followed by a desire to shout down the offender with a supposed litany of American misdeeds. With that in mind, I am wondering if we have not embarked upon the age of " Anti-anti-anti-semitism ".
I'm not considering Holocaust deniers, globalization protestors with " Zionazi " signs or the clueless, young, topless, European women going to demonstrations outfitted as half-naked suicide bombers. Those people are simply anti-semites who mix Jew-hatred with their radical socialism and anti-Americanism. Rather, I'm referring to the newfound belligerence with which otherwise respectable people quickly dismiss Jewish concerns over increases in anti-semitic violence or attempt to suppress such information
. I speak of those people who maintain they are stoutly " anti-zionist " in criticizing Israeli policies when what they actually want is not justice for Palestinians but for Israel to disappear quietly. Anti-anti-anti-semitism is a position of irritated weariness and antipathy instead of thought or reflection, more a dismissal born of an impatient disdain than of hatred. Nevertheless, it is no more logical than the anti-anti-communism of years past and it often can be found floating in the same tired, bitter, leftist political circles.