web analytics
April 21, 2015 / 2 Iyar, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


How The Academic Left Came To Hate Israel

Richard L. Cravatts, Ph.D.

Richard L. Cravatts, Ph.D.

“What the Palestinians ultimately insist on is that Israel must be taught that it does not have the right to defend its racial supremacy,” Massad wrote during the 2009 Israeli defensive incursions into Gaza, “and that the Palestinians have the right to defend their universal humanity against Israel’s racist oppression.”

The charge of racism also enables liberals to excuse the moral transgressions of the oppressed, and, as an extension of that thinking, to single out Israel and America for particular and harsh scrutiny owing to their perceived “institutionalized” racism and greater relative power.

The self-righteousness leftists feel in pointing out Zionism’s essential defect of being a racist ideology insulates them from having to also reflect on Arab transgressions, since, as Ruth Wisse pointed out in If I Am Not For Myself: The Liberals Betrayal of the Jews, liberals can excuse their own betrayal of Israel by holding it fully responsible for the very hatreds it inspires.

“Ascribing to Israel the blame for its predicament, democratic countries can pursue their self-interest free of any lingering moral scruple,” Wisse wrote. “Israel is examined for its every moral failing to justify policies of disengagement, while the moral failings of Arab countries are considered no one’s business but their own, so that their blatant abuses of human rights should not get in the way of realpolitick.”

Coupled with academia’s fervent desire to make campuses socially ideal settings where racial and cultural strife cease to exist is the other newly-popular impulse to inculcate students with a longing for what is called “social justice,” a nebulous term lifted from Marxist thought that empowers left-leaning administrators and faculty with the false ethical security derived from feeling that they are bringing positive moral and ethical precepts to campuses.

For the Left, according to David Horowitz, a former radical leftist turned conservative, social justice is “the concept of a world divided into oppressors and oppressed.” Those seeking social justice, therefore, do so with the intention of leveling the economic, cultural, and political playing fields; they seek to reconstruct society in a way that disadvantages the powerful and the elites, and overthrows them if necessary – in order that the dispossessed and weak can acquire equal standing.

In other words, the Left yearns for a utopian society that does not yet exist, and is willing to reconstruct and overturn the existing status quo – often at a terrible human cost – in the pursuit of seeking so-called justice for those who, in their view, have been passed over or abused by history.

And in the minds of academic leftists, there are no superior national behaviors; all nations are equal in value and in the court of world opinion. This contorted reason is commonly referred to as “moral relativism,” and is a seminal cause of the way Israel’s actions in defending itself against genocidal Arab aggression over 60 years are seen to be no different from homicide attacks on Israeli civilians initiated by its enemies.

This rationalization, that violence is an acceptable, if not welcomed, component of seeking social justice – that is, that the inherent “violence” of imperialism, colonialism, or capitalism will be met by the same violence as the oppressed attempt to throw off their oppressors – is exactly the style of self-defeating rationality that in this age has proven to be an intractable part of the war on terror. America-hating and Israel-hating academics have not infrequently wished for harm to come to these countries at the hands of the victim groups to whom they readily give their sympathies.

* * * * *

For Glazov, sympathy for jihadists is part of an enduring ideological legacy, and “the Left clearly continues to be inspired by its undying Marxist conviction that capitalism is evil and that forces of revolution are rising to overthrow it – and must be supported.”

Joel Beinin, for instance, a self-avowed Marxist and former president of the Middle Eastern Studies Association, specifically excused Palestinian violence during the first Intifada in a piece titled “Was the Red Flag Flying There?”

“Palestinian attacks on civilians (and even armed soldiers) were widely condemned as terrorism by international opinion and media,” Beinin wrote, but terrorism was clearly the “Palestinians’ primary weapon of resistance” given the political impediment they faced; namely, the “colonialist thrust of the Zionist project” and the complicity of hegemonic, imperialist powers in inspiring the terror wrought against them.

Similarly, Joel Kovel, the rabidly anti-Zionist professor who was finally fired by Bard College in 2009 because of his ideological excesses, has seen terrorism as the logical, and excusable, end result of occupation – something for which, in his view, not only Israelis but all Jews must share in the blame.

“Why have a substantial majority of Jews,” he wrote in Tikkun magazine, “chosen to flaunt world opinion in order to rally about a state that essentially has turned its occupied lands into a huge concentration camp and driven its occupied peoples to such gruesome expedients as suicide bombing?”

About the Author: Richard L. Cravatts, Ph.D., is president of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East and author of “Genocidal Liberalism: The University’s Jihad Against Israel & Jews.”


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “How The Academic Left Came To Hate Israel”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Amb. Thomas Pickering testified before the  House Armed Services Committee,  about Iran's nuclear program on June 19, 2014.
Brandeis Commencement Speaker Leads Iran Cheerleader Squad
Latest Indepth Stories
Rav Aharon Lichtenstein

What was supposed to have been a 15 minute interview, turned into an intense learning session and intellectual battle, the likes of which I had never experienced in my entire life.

Rabbi Lichtenstein (z"l).

Rav Lichtenstein did not learn Tanaim, Amoraim, Rishonim and Achronim, rather he learned with them

Israel Supreme Court at Night

How can NIF claim they don’t support BDS when they try to repeal laws forbidding boycotts of Israel?

Rabbi Lichtenstein (z"l).

“Rav Lichtenstein’s vision and inspiration served to guide the development of Tzohar.”

As Holocaust survivors decline rapidly attacks on the veracity of the Holocaust rapidly escalates

The Constitution created history’s most powerful legislature & inherent foreign policy power battle

The S-300 poses a major problem; Israel will have to get creative as to if, when & where it strikes

“The resentment towards us (Jews/Israelis) was really intense. They clearly hate Zionism & Zionists”

Egypt has been more effective against Gazan smuggling tunnels than Israel’s military operations

She had many names and was many things to many people, but to me she was just Babineni.

Is ISIS in Gaza? “No, but there are ISIS loyalists here..we pray to God they unite under ISIS’ flag”

Rabbi Portal was that great “inspirer,” changing people for the better, enriching the lives of all

Iran knows Obama, Putin, and the Europeans don’t have a Red Line beyond which they will go to war

There is no way to explain the Holocaust. I know survivors who are not on speaking terms with G-d. I know many who are the opposite. I have no right to go there…

When a whole side of your family perishes, friends become the extended family you do not have.

“We stand with Israel because of its values and its greatness and because its such a wonderful ally”

More Articles from Richard L. Cravatts
Cravatts-Richard--new

The primary objective of this conference was to question the fundamental legitimacy of Israel itself

Cravatts-Richard--new

Abbas has been adding new layers of rhetoric to his tactical campaign to de-Judaize Jerusalem

Only in the inverted world of academia would Jewish professors denounce the AMCHA Initiative report.

Rather than serving as a deterrent against terrorist attacks, Israel’s military strength and capabilities are instead looked at as an unfair advantage in the asymmetrical war in which it finds itself.

The multiculturalism that animates the hate-Israel crowd is sprinkled with code words of oppression

Jews do not fare well on campuses these days, particularly in the context of the debate over Israel.

The cynical, and historically and factually inaccurate, view has meant leftists frequently denounce Western democracies as imperialistic, racist, militaristic oppressors.

What was unique about the MLA’s and the ASA’s approach was the breathtakingly Orwellian notion that not only was Israel itself guilty of the many alleged transgressions assigned to it by its libelers, but a boycott against Israeli academics was warranted because the academic establishment itself is complicit in Zionism’s excesses and a core element of the bemoaned occupation, oppression, and denial of Palestinian self-determination.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/front-page/how-the-academic-left-came-to-hate-israel/2012/04/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: