Why do leftists(elite left in the US and Europe)hate Israel?

Interesting article:

Leftists are actually very different than true liberals. Just thought this was an interesting article.

Sadly, we also live in a world where anything less than complete support for Israel is often branded as “hating Israel” and being anti-semitic.

Man I need to get that guy to paint my house sometime. I’ve never seen someone use so broad a brush.

The left, much more than the right, seems to need group reinforcement.

Ditto Rush, ditto.

Let’s look at the sequel:


So they’re all a bunch of damn commies.

Let’s look at some other articles on this site:

“Torture may save lives”


Here’s an article that compare Richard Clarke to Linda Tripp:


Not that I’d accept that guy’s definition of the difference between the two, but yes, they are. It’s just that most americans aren’t aware that there’s a whole political spectrum between the democratic party and america hating communists.

I like how he refers to “hardcore Zionists” as “American Jews.”


I believe there are several reasons:

  1. It is an easy way to express one’s hatred for America.
  2. Israel is viewed as an outpost of colonialism , and an active practitioner of it.
  3. Israel is a western nation, and hence can be judged by the left. Israel is not protected by cultural relativism, as the Arabs are.
  4. Leftist Christian churches can escape any lingering guilt about the Holocaust, by turning Israel into a villain. Some leftist churches hate Israel because they think this will help protect their members in the holy land- in other words they feel threatened.
  5. Ferocious Muslim hatred of Israel and the Jews reinforces the natural cowardice of many on the left who go along with the Muslims to stay out of their line of fire.
  6. Jewish leftists are prominent in the anti-Israel movement. This opens the floodgates for everybody else.
  7. Israel is attacked because the secular left is appalled by the influence of religious settlers and their biblical connections to the land of Israel, and by the support for Israel by evangelical Christians, and Christian Zionists.

Easier explanation:

  1. Israel gets a bazillion military dollars a year from us, because we need an ally in the region for oil purposes.
  2. However, they actually use this money to shoot Palestinians civilians.
  3. Therefore, the US is somewhat morally culpable for Israel’s actions.

I don’t see what’s so hard about this. The reason other states with appalling human rights records don’t catch this much shit in the US is that we don’t give them a lot of money and encouragement.

Israel made over a 1000 people homeless in the Gaza strip this week. That’s the kind of action I’m happy to support?

Yes, Derek, I find the attitude that if you criticise Israel you must be anti-semetic to be a cheap attack by the far right that devalues the meaning of anti-semitism, and what it meant to suffer at the hands of real anti-semitism.

I am pro-Israel, but I am still critical of it. I am pro-Israel because I support its right to exist, and I am amazed and proud of what they have achieved, creating a stable, democratic, and humane state, that accomodates arab-Israelis surprisingly well, considering the grievances with its near neighbours. That’s Israel proper, mind you. What we have in the Occupied Territories is a completely different situation. In the Occupied Territories we have a situation close to apartheid, where several million Palestinians lack basic human rights, such as the right to live where they like, the right to go where they like, to trade with whom they like, nor even the right to self-governance.

It is this situation that is the root cause of dissent for most people who aren’t opposed to Israel for ideological reasons. It is this situation which is barely touched upon by that article, as it seeks to make irrational people’s genuine opposition to one country forcefully occupying another. I supported the first Gulf War, because I was opposed to Saddam’s invasion of the Kuwaiti people. So why am I a leftist, liberal, anti-semite or whatever label you want to give me for not supporting Israel’s similar occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip?

It’s a shame for Israel that it gets so much attention, when there are other offenders in the world that seem to get away with their behaviour, like China in Tibet, and I think some anti-American resentment may be behind this. For me, the reason why I end up focusing more on Israel than China, despite my opposition to both, is because nobody ever disagrees that what China is doing in Tibet is wrong. On the subject of the Occupied Territories, I will have people finding all kinds of ways to justify it, from blaming terrorism, which mostly came about as a result of the occupation rather than causing it, or even believing that Israel has a historical right to the land, which to me sounds like an excuse for neo-colonialism.

I really want Israel to find some kind of solution to the issue in the Occupied Territories, because I want Israelis to be proud of their achievement, and not have Israel’s name sullied by people who would steal from others in the name of God.

This is a load of horse shit, if there ever was one.

Now where’s Philomath when you need him?

This might be tangental to the main discussion, but I don’t follow you here, Jason. I mean, certainly we do send Scrooge McDuck-equse sacks of money to Isreal, and certainly we do need an ally in the region (for oil and other purposes), but how do you tie the two together in this cause-effect relationship?

Sending cash to Isreal to have a Mid-East oil ally is like wooing the only Republican in the Local 509 Pipefitters to win the union vote. Seems to me, if I were looking to find an oil ally in the Mid-East, I’d be sending those checks to Saudi Arabia, not the pissant country (no anti-Semitism intended) everybody else in the region wants destroyed.

I’d read somewhere that the far-right Christians adamantly support Israel because according to Revelations, Israel must exist in order for the Rapture to occur.

SK: Jason is saying, simply, that our sending billions of dollars to Israel - money from the pocket of every American - makes us feel more accountable for the hideous apartheid style actions Israel takes, because we are each directly contributing to their ability to do so, via our taxes. That tends to breed more direct resentment, I think - money being used to support actions you feel are inhuman.

Yeah. More directly, they use the military hardware we sell them to beat up civilians. The linkage can’t be much clearer.

The oil linkage has to do with the fact that in the 50’s through today, we’ve seen Middle Eastern countries as unreliable allies with the exception of Saudi Arabia with which we also have a special relationship (protection and military hardware for oil). The idea was that if Arab nationalists did end up tilting to the Soviet Union during the Cold War we’d have a reliable staging ground to move on the Suez, vital to tanker traffic, or the oil fields. Israel was, essentially, what some neocons are now claiming they want Iraq to become. The political realities, however, made that a last case scenario as such an overt partnership would almost certainly tilt public opinion, not only in the Muslim world but the whole world, against us as Israel is generally seen as in major violation of several UN resolutions. And as time’s moved on our capabilities for military logistics have become more nimble and capable at operating from longer ranges.

The main reasons we continue to prop up Israel have to do with historical sympathy in general, it’s hard not to admire this country’s pluck nor despise the seeming bloodlust of its neighbors, and the fact that certain important segments of the electorate will vote based on how well we support Israel.

I get the 1-2-3 linkage, hell I even agree with it to an extent. What I don’t get is Jason’s comment that “Israel gets a bazillion military dollars a year from us, because we need an ally in the region for oil purposes.” That seems to say that Israel gets cash because the US needs an oil ally. Which is funny because Israel is a consumer of oil, not an exporter, so I don’t see what value Israel is as an “oil ally.”

Now I could see “…because we need to make up for our lack of early action against the Holocaust and ensure something like that never happens again” even “…because we need to appease our Jewish constituents.” Hell, even “…because we need a democracy in the region” is at least logical. But “…because we need an ally in the region for oil purposes” just doesn’t make logical sense.

Do you think American sympathy partly lies in the similarities between the development of the two countries? Both Israel and America carved out their existence in the face of hostile natives (Palestinians/First Nations), local powers (Egypt/Mexico) and superpowers (Russia/Britain). The Palestinians attitude towards the Jewish settlers was much like the First Nation’s attitude towards the American settlers, i.e. they lived alongside the other Palestinians, both Muslim and Christian, until they started turning up in larger and larger numbers. The Palestinians then started to feel threatened, and started fighting back, first against the British adminstration, which they were annoyed at for not controlling the immigration, and then fighting against the Jewish settlers themselves.

Do Americans feel it might be hypocritical to criticise Israel too harshly for its settlement of lands that belong to other people, when America itself was founded on similar behaviour?

Not even most lay Tibetans really want China to leave anymore. Tibet and it’s inhabitants have more political autonomy than most Chinese who do not live in a autonomous area like Tibet or Xin Jiang. Tibet also has very little to offer it’s inhabitants, China is a major supplier of some major natural resources to that area. Not to mention, Lamaism is one of the most violent sects of Buddhism to have ever existed due likely to it’s status as a religious and political power in Tibet and parts of Mongolia.

Historically, Tibet and China have struggled against one another for domination of that area for centuries. China just happens to have won that war… for now.

Tim: I think that’d be asking for an overgeneralization of some kind of American concensus that doesn’t exist. I don’t think most Americans really think much about the Middle East as a whole, or didn’t until 9/11, aside from the fact that Palestinians and Israelis kill each other alot, which is probably the Palestinian’s fault because they’re terrorists, or something, and there’s some oil out there somewhere.

I’d say for those who’ve thought about it, it’s largely sympathy with the Jewish people based on the Holocaust. They seem to have earned our protection after suffering our neglect for most of the war and the outright hostility of our allies, re: The British in Palestine. Not to say the British didn’t have good reasons for their attitudes but the end result looked pretty cold blooded and pitiless. And, let’s face it, few are old enough to remember, and fewer care, that post-war Israel started off as the product of a guerilla war waged by bombers and operatives not completely unlike what the Palestinians ended up doing years later. You only have so many ways of dealing with an oppressor, The British, who has military superiority.

So it’s more a David and Goliath thing to us. We see Israel as embattled by hostile forces and having won some seemingly impossible fights in self-defense. There are cultural similiarities as well. It’s hard for most of us to really understand Arabic culture, the treatment of women, the demonstrative and violent mass protests, cruel punishments and so on. Israelis, most of them, could be folks living next door with the same values and lifestyles Americans have. Yes, this is a gross overstatement but that’s rather the image we have in the media here so that’s what people know.

This is such an ignorant statement. I just love how you lump all Arabs together.

It’s no wonder to me that Israel so often gets the sympathies of the American Government and it’s people instead of Palestine.

I would distinguish between Americans’ and Europeans’ dislike of Israel.

Americans tend to be more nuanced, supporting some things that Israel does, while condemning others. Europeans have been anti-Israel for a long time.

Take, for example, the Yom Kippur war, in which Israel was clearly not agressor-- the US sent an airlift to aid Israel; the Eropeans (except for Portugal) wouldn’t even give landing rights to those planes (for refueling). More recently, during the Oslo process, Europeans were very quick to condemn Israel’s failures to live up its side of the deal, but almost never condemned Arafat.