State Dept: Criticism of Israel = Anti-Semitism?

In the most recent edition of its annual “Contemporary Global Anti-Semitism” released Thursday, the State Department — and hence the U.S. government — moves ever more closely to a long-standing neo-conservative tenet: that criticism of Israel or Israeli policies often, if not always, equals anti-Semitism. The report also suggests that comparing Israel’s treatment of Palestinians in the Occupied Territories to South African apartheid — as former President Jimmy Carter did in his 2006 book Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid — also amounts to anti-Semitism. And it focuses on the United Nations as a breeding ground for anti-Semitism as expressed through criticism of Israel, another major neo-conservative theme that has intensified sharply over the past five years, notably through the efforts of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, the National Review Online and the Wall Street Journal’s editorial page.

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