By Way Of Deception

Gilad Atzmon

Examining Alan Dershowitz's and Abe Foxman's arguments against The Wandering Who?

Earlier this week I learned from the Jerusalem Post how desperate notorious Zionists Alan Dershowitz and ADL’s Abe Foxman are to stop my new book ‘The The Wandering Who?’. It seems that Foxman, Dershowitz and their allies amongst the Jewish ‘anti’-Zionists (aka ‘anti-Zionist Zionists’ or AZZ) are in a state of total hysteria. So far, the book has been endorsed by some of the most distinguished academics, writers and humanists in contemporary discourse. It has been praised on every dissident outlet around the world.

But it’s also obvious to every person who reads me that there is not a drop of racism, bigotry or anti Semitism in any of my writing. In my entire writing career I have never criticized Jews as people, ethnicity or race. Nor do I criticise Judaism. What I do is to scrutinize Jewish ideology and culture and I argue that if Israel defines itself as the ‘Jewish State’ and drops bombs on civilians from airplanes decorated with Jewish symbols, then surely it is our moral duty to question what this ‘Jewishness’ is all about.

In fact my biggest contribution to the discourse is my attempt to offer a critical argument against Jewish identity politics that is both ethically grounded and based on universal thought.

But it seems that those who try to stop the book refuse to read it. Instead, they recycle empty labels that cannot be substantiated. The Jerusalem Post wrote this week,

“The The Wandering Who?, has been described as contemporary cultural racism and as an attack on Jewish identity inspired by Soviet anti Semitism.”

Needless to say, ‘cultural racism’ is a misnomer. There is nothing wrong with cultural criticism as long as it is not racist, and racism is clearly something that will not be found in any of my texts. And what about ‘Soviet anti- Semitism’, what is that exactly, and how specifically do I fall into such a category?

Alan Dershowitz seems to forget that defending an alleged wife- killer may be somewhat easier than promoting an ideological racist, expansionist and murderous collective[*]. Dershowitz told the Jerusalem Post that

[the] “book has crossed the line from anti-Zionism to anti-Semitism.”

Here, I’m puzzled. Is Dershowitz, getting soft in his old age? Is he now suggesting that ‘anti Zionism’ is actually legitimate or even kosher? This would certainly be a most welcome development, but no, it seems that Dershowitz also hasn’t read the book. And if he has, he has clearly failed to explain why the book is ‘anti-Semitic’?

As well as being intellectually lame, Dershowitz is also both a bully and a coward,

“I challenge Mearsheimer and Falk to a debate on whether they have endorsed an anti-Semitic book,” [Dershowitz proclaims.]

I believe that if Dershowitz has a problem with the book, he should have the guts to debate this with its author.

Dershowitz prefers to intimidate rather than debate. This is neither new nor surprising and ‘The The Wandering Who?’ attempts to explore the depth, and the characteristics and the origins of those tactics that are employed regularly by Dershowitz and his ilk. In the book I try to explain why they prefer to lie and intimidate rather than engage in fruitful critical dialogue. And the answer is simple. Blindness and detachment are inherent in Jewish identity political discourse. They are there to maintain the club, so consequently the history of Jews may be understood as one long tale of the brutal silencing of any form of dissent.

Another laughable character in a panic about my book is Abraham H. Foxman, National Director of the Anti- Defamation League.

“With his glowing endorsement of a book by a known Hitler apologist and Holocaust denier, John Mearsheimer has revealed himself to be an anti- Semite.”

Yet this master of ‘Anti- Defamation’ fails to inform us what exactly it is that makes me into a ‘Hitler apologist’ or a ‘Holocaust denier’. The truth of the matter is that within the Jewish Ghetto some Zionists and AZZ just get so carried away tagging me with their own outrageous labels, probably projecting their own symptoms on myself, that they miss that no one outside the Jewish ghetto believes any of this spin.

In ‘The The Wandering Who?’ I try to grasp at this deep culture of deceit - so symptomatic of modern Jewish political national activism - while they, for some reason, believe that ‘by way of deception’ is the true materialisation of Jewish wisdom.

So, unable to produce a single intelligible argument, Foxman reverts to his Talmudic bullying tactics;

“For years, Mearsheimer paraded as an objective analyst, professor and critic, and for years we were very careful not to label him as an anti-Semite. Now he has clearly aligned himself with the worst kind of anti-Semitism.”

Being intellectually retarded, Foxman here admits that the ‘anti-Semitic’ tag is attached to people and even distinguished academics without any evidence of any form of hatred towards Jews or ‘Semites’. Mearsheimer’s sin, according to Foxman, is simply that he endorsed my writing and so Foxman labels the American professor as an ‘anti-Semite’ without presenting a shred of evidence of hatred towards Jews or anyone else. I honestly can’t make up my mind whether Foxman’s blunder here is sad or funny. But certainly, it is revealing.

Foxman and his ilk attribute the anti-Semitic label to anyone who fails to surrender to their command. But the tide has turned. Foxman, Dershowitz and their AZZ collaborators will have to either adapt or accept defeat. They can neither stop me nor my book. ‘The The Wandering Who?’ has now been read by thousands - it now has a life of its own, and it will quickly spread.

If Dershowitz, Foxman and any other hasbara campaigners want to do themselves a big favour, they should engage in an open debate. They should dig deep into my writing in the hope that they might manage to produce a valid counter argument.

Do they posses the wisdom or intellectual integrity to do this? I doubt it, but I truly hope they do. It’s really starting to get a bit boring over here.

[*] According to an Israeli poll, at the time of operation Cast Lead, a whopping 94% of the Israeli Jewish population strongly supported the operation and IDF’s tactics that included carpet bombardment and WMD warfare.

Gilad Atzmon was born in Israel in 1963 and had his musical training at the Rubin Academy of Music, Jerusalem (Composition and Jazz). As a multi-instrumentalist he plays Soprano, Alto, Tenor and Baritone Saxes, Clarinet and Flutes. His album Exile was the BBC jazz album of the year in 2003. He has been described by John Lewis on the Guardian as the “hardest-gigging man in British jazz". His albums, of which he has recorded nine to date, often explore political themes and the music of the Middle East.

Until 1994 he was a producer-arranger for various Israeli Dance & Rock Projects, performing in Europe and the USA playing ethnic music as well as R&R and Jazz.

Coming to the UK in 1994, Atzmon recovered an interest in playing the music of the Middle East, North Africa and Eastern Europe that had been in the back of his mind for years. In 2000 he founded the Orient House Ensemble in London and started re-defining his own roots in the light of his emerging political awareness. Since then the Orient House Ensemble has toured all over the world. The Ensemble includes Eddie Hick on Drums, Yaron Stavi on Bass and Frank Harrison on piano & electronics. Also, being a prolific writer, Atzmon's essays are widely published. His novels 'Guide to the perplexed' and 'My One And Only Love' have been translated into 24 languages. The Wandering Who? can be ordered HERE. Gilad Atzmon's Blog is HERE.



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