We ask you to resist the false alarm that your Zionist friends sound when they cry "anti-Semitism!" as the proverbial boy might cry "wolf!" For those who do so are robbing a horrendous historic episode of its gravity, confusing legitimate dissent with genocide. Criticism is not Kristallnacht; challenges to the occupation are not the gas chambers. The distinction is crucial.
In July 1944, some 430,000 Hungarian Jews had been deported to Auschwitz in the space of 10 weeks -- the fastest, cruelest and most efficient mass murder of the Nazi genocide. Yet Wallenberg rescued some 100,000 Jews in six months in Hungary in 1944, demonstrating that one person with the courage to care, and the commitment to act, can confront evil and transform history.
University is a place where students can freely exchange ideas but equally feel safe to do so. Students should feel safe in the knowledge that whether they identify as religious, gay, atheist, etc. or as any intersection of these, they would not be subjected to derision and scorn.
Since the jihadist terrorist assault on Paris, the most glaring double standard has come into view. It seems that while the victims in France have our sympathy and concern, the Jews murdered by Arabs in Jerusalem and other cities in Israel do not.
The idea behind terrorism is to evoke contagion, a feeling that no one is safe anywhere. But believing that is dangerous both because of the panic and anxiety it evokes, and because of the way it interferes with our sense of justice.
No country should be beyond legitimate criticism and all should be measured against the same yardstick, but when you single out one country over all others, namely Israel, and hold it to a unique standard and put it on the receiving end of exclusive censure, it's anti-Semitism, plain and simple.
Anti-Semitism is what many Canadian Jews experienced who faced quotas when applying for professional degrees, or who were barred from joining certain golf clubs. Anti-Semitism is what my ancestors experienced in Eastern Europe with pogroms, frequent assaults and massacres in Jewish communities. Anti-Semitism is the murder of millions of Jews during the Holocaust. How can it be in any way appropriate to use this term to describe individuals who criticize a modern political entity -- the state of Israel -- which systematically violates the rights of Palestinians?
Growing up in Iran has helped me to see many similarities between the Third Reich's propaganda system and the propaganda system that is currently employed by Iranian clerics -- they both justify hatred and especially anti-Semitism.
The human rights-interfaith dialogue rhetoric employed by President Obama on May 22, 2015 at the Adas Israel Synagogue in Washington DC was wonderful and made people feel warm inside. But this type of rhetoric is, in fact, messianic -- it is for tomorrow, for a time when there is no more war. That day has not yet come, I am afraid. And to speak as if it has is very dangerous.
I loved TV, so to enjoy the adventures of (the bionic) Steve Austin or Jim Rockford or Fonzie and the Cunninghams, I had to endure the obvious social-engineering messages that reminded me I was an outsider. Then along came David Letterman.