Hooray for America, the First Amendment, the ability to learn almost anything almost instantly: we live in the Internet Age.
But sometimes freedom has a dark side, and the Internet certainly has that. Ya’akov Eilon, an Israeli news broadcaster for many years, is now the news director at Keshet Broadcasting, an Israeli broadcasting company. Keshet, in collaboration with a Canadian company, has produced and released an important new film.
This film, “The New Anti-Semitism,” is one that every Jewish child, parent and grandparent should watch. This documentary takes information many others have already recognized: that anti-Zionism is the updated and more fashionable disguise anti-Semitism often wears these days. But Eilon’s video goes one important important step further – it shows how this new form of anti-Semitism gets played out in the ubiquitous, and almost entirely unpoliced forum of the Internet.
The 40 minute film covers a lot of ground, but of special significance is watching the mutation of bald-faced lies. One example is that the Jewish owner of the Twin Towers building masterminded the catastrophic attacks on 9/11 – why? Why, to collect the insurance money, of course.
But as with all conspiracy theories, lies uttered with a straight face and, especially, in front of a room full of rapt listeners, filmed and spliced in with swelling scores and impressive statistics, turns what in print would be obviously ludicrous into a whisper down the lane of possible truths and “I heard that….” Once such a sequence shows up on multiple websites, it gains the patina of truth and then metamorphoses, for those already predisposed or simply neutral and ignorant, into a hardened fact.
The classic theories of Jews controlling the media, the banking and the financial industries are part of the new anti-Semitism, but there are several twists. For example, the film interviews Americans who believe Jews are responsible for U.S. immigration policy – the goal of which is to pollute the white race – and the “explanations” that Norwegian mass murderer Anders Brevik acted on orders from Jews. Naturally, many of the theories ultimately end up with Jews as the Jewish State really being uber-Nazis, thereby minimizing the harm of the Holocaust or of any current insult or assault.
So, nearly seventy years after the end of World War II, Jew-hatred has found not only a new costume, but a new stage on which to perform. Your children may have learned to recognize the warning signs of anti-Semitism, but their classmates, professors, politicians, and future employers who haven’t, are susceptible to this new strain. And so it is this new mutation of the ancient hatred with which we must learn to cope.
“The New Anti-Semitism” was aired for the first time in Israel on the eve of Yom HaShoah, April 7.
This film should be shown at schools Jewish children attend – whether or not they are Jewish schools. It is one more essential inoculation against anti-Semitism that is now available, and is now necessary. Keshet Broadcasting has provided this novel and necessary arrow which must be added to their quiver.
About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools.
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