A Dangerous Conflation

An open letter from Jewish writers

Read the full letter online; the beginning is below. An exploration of antisemitism versus critique of Israel, as well as a clear statement of Jewish values about “repairing the world, questioning authority, and championing the oppressed over the oppressor”. Thank you to all who wrote and signed this letter.

“WE ARE JEWISH WRITERS, artists, and activists who wish to disavow the widespread narrative that any criticism of Israel is inherently antisemitic. Israel and its defenders have long used this rhetorical tactic to shield Israel from accountability, dignify the US’s multibillion-dollar investment in Israel’s military, obscure the deadly reality of occupation, and deny Palestinian sovereignty. Now, this insidious gagging of free speech is being used to justify Israel’s ongoing military bombardment of Gaza and to silence criticism from the international community. 
We condemn the recent attacks on Israeli and Palestinian civilians and mourn such harrowing loss of life. In our grief, we are horrified to see the fight against antisemitism weaponized as a pretext for war crimes with stated genocidal intent.
Antisemitism is an excruciatingly painful part of our community’s past and present. Our families have escaped wars, harassment, pogroms, and concentration camps…[]”