Members of elite starts to address link between antisemitism and anti-Israel media coverage

lifted from Vårt Land, google translate


The Jew hatred we dont want to see
Anti-Semitism appears no longer just in hate-meetings or on weird internet sites.


In the autumn of 2011, peace researcher Johan Galtung, one of Norway’s most famous intellectuals, recommended Norwegians to read the anti-Semitic forgery Protocols of Zion as “a guide to our time.” Three years later the country’s most important foreign correspondent, NRK Gro Holm wrote about Jewish dominance in the US media, “it is not surprising that relatively few Palestinian voices are heard when Israel is attacked.” When she understandably met with resistance, she hit back with a list of Jews in the media, taken from Nazi website Stormfront.

This spring began “trim queen” Kari Jaquesson to “doodle” on the Islamic state on Facebook. Jaquesson seemed to have learned the conspiracy language fluently – the art of insinuating through seemingly innocent questions. So having pulled the classic “Look for the money, who benefits from this?” She noted that it was “strange” that IS has not attacked Israel. (If you ponder this, I suggest you read a bit about the Israeli defense force.)

It’s bad enough that prominent Norwegians do so. Its far worse  that it does not get any special aftermath. It should be noted that Gro Holm immediately apologised, so her case can we leave out. Although the course is funny that a central NRK correspondent did not notice that section of Jews in the media also listed media figures who were “non-white”.

But Johan Galtung dismissed the criticism as manifestations of the Norwegian Jante Law, and a few years later he was back on the evening news. There he was babbling at the  launch his new book. He has even been on a “peace seminar” in the company of the crown prince couple. And no media has picked up statements to Jaquesson.

So why is it so? Perhaps because there is a tendency to ignore and evade anti-Semitic statements?

The tendency exists among people who otherwise considers anti racism as an important part of their identity. Perhaps it is so because anti racism is the new class struggle of the left, and then will be the first fight on behalf of those who are poor, poorly educated or imprisoned. Jews do not fit into this schema. And not all Israelis critics remember to step on the brakes when the criticism starts to resemble anti-Semitic myths about Jews as evil schemers or child murderers.

The desire to explain away anti-Semitism is also a prominent feature of the right. For years, the Islam-critical right side used anti-Semitism, which unfortunately is strong among some Muslims, as a weapon against the Muslim minority as a whole: it is the Muslims who are the real racists. The exercise may require some nimble acrobatics. Editor Hans Rustad in is normally so vigilant on anti-Semitism that even Stein Lillevolden praises Him for it. But when the Swedish provocation artist Dan Park was presented at a meeting organized by the website, one of the Parks most notorious stunts, placing a Zyklon B box at a Jewish assembly hall, conjured into an act of solidarity towards Swedish Jews. That Park attending Nazi meetings and makes street art about “the myth of the six million”, was swept under the carpet.

The question is how long we can let Semitism pass this way. It’s serious now. There are about 1,500 Jews in Norway, so few that one of antisemitism classics, that the Jews control the media, in fact rarely emerge in this country. Norwegian coverage of Israeli-Palestinian conflict makes sure that kind of allegations are tragicomic.

A society without room for 1,500 Jews certainly does not have room for much. Therefore, the debate about antisemitism center of the Jews, but a debate about us who are not Jews, and what kind of mindset that flouts around in our heads. And ultimately a debate about what kind of Norway we want.

Didrik Søderlind is Editor of the Humanist and advisor in Norwegian Humanist Association

1 comment for “Members of elite starts to address link between antisemitism and anti-Israel media coverage

  1. de Bacle
    May 15, 2015 at 12:03 pm

    “..elite starts to address link between antisemitism and anti-Israel media” … You might well be right, Prof, interesting observation.

    Also the “Centre against anti-Semitism” (sort of a blunt name,,,) in their last “editorial” pinpoint the Norwegian media. They usually don’t bother about Norwegian media they long ago “wrote off” as lost.

    NOw they charge head on on ALL of it, insinuatig that NOrwegian media are coordinated in a politcal agenda.
    “..more and more is the subsidized and politicized [Norwegian] media taking control…” and “But it is not politics that is the media’s biggest problem – it is democracy”……”In particular, this applies to democracy in Israel “.

    The editorial is, as blunt as the Centres’ name, now openly accusing Norwegian media for anti-Democratic subversive agenda and intentional anti-Semitism “diguised” as Israel-bashing.

    Similarly, in line with your observation of renewed scrutiny of the media, in a recent interview by Historian Nabintu Herland with Manfred Gerstenfeld, in the last part they focus on the critical destructive role of the Norwegian media (and, that this development over the years has been neglected).

    Gertsenfeld has previously mainly addressed the bigotry of the poitical elite, and has not focused much scientific analysis (at least not openly) on the devastating role of the media except where they got under his skin,
    It seems a new book is coming out soon, where he supposedly presents a full analysis… Sounds interesting, lets hope some of the Norwegian cultural “stars” read it.

    The media themselves will ignore the book, for sure, the same way they succeeded in resisting the temptation to hint to the Norwegian public of the 1500 strong (offical Polise statistics) in Oslo that demonstrated support of Israel on Yom Haatzmaut. Well Done ! Kol Hakavod.

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