antisemitism,  Europe,  Israel

Exchanging one enemy for another

Writing in Haaretz, Adar Primor muses about the visits of extreme-right European politicians to Israel, hosted by their extreme-right Israeli counterparts.

He notes that one of the visitors, Filip Dewinter, is a leader of Belgium’s Vlaams Belang party, “a successor to the Flemish National Movement, many of whose members collaborated with the Nazis. Among its current members are a number of Holocaust deniers. Dewinter himself moved about in anti-Semitic circles and has ties to European extremist and neo-Nazi parties. In 1988, he paid his respects to the tens of thousands of Nazi soldiers buried in Belgium, and in 2001, he opened a speech with an oath used by the SS.”

Another visitor, Austrian Freedom Party leader Heinz-Christian Strache, “[a]s a university student… belonged to an extremist organization from which Jews were banned, hung out with neo-Nazis and participated in paramilitary exercises with them.”

The organizers of these visits believe they have tamed this bunch of extremists they brought over from Europe, who after trading in their Jewish demon-enemy for the Muslim criminal-immigrant model are now singing in unison that Samaria is Jewish ground. Soon they’ll be sprouting beards and wearing kippot. But they have not genuinely cast off their spiritual DNA, and in any event, they aren’t looking for anything except for Jewish absolution that will bring them closer to political power.

Joining the list of those who have brought shame onto this country for hosting these characters are the Ashkelon Academic College, which gave them a platform; MK Nissim Zeev (Shas), who received them in the Knesset; Deputy Minister Ayoob Kara (Likud), who expressed his delight at meeting “lovers of Israel, whom we must strengthen,”; and the Israel Air Force, which tainted its reputation by permitting [Yisrael Beiteinu MK Eliezer] Cohen, a veteran of the force, to give this gang an exclusive tour of an F-15 squadron.

The Austrian press reported this week that the whitewashing undergone by Strache here in our Land of Milk and Honey could well pave his way to the chancellor’s office. And, as they say: “To the glory of the State of Israel.”

How many believe that the likes of Dewinter and Strache have undergone a genuine change of heart about the Jews, as opposed to opportunistically exchanging hatred of one group for hatred of another?

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