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Central to a number of manifestations of antisemitism is anti-Zionism, which in our time has become not only intellectually fashionable but morally required: One cannot be deemed morally good without supporting those who are bent on the annihilation of the Jewish state. This is the topic of Chapter 7. Like most manifestations of antisemitism, but although it is one that has the explicit endorsement both of the left-wing elite and of Islamic Jihadists, anti-Zionism is cloaked in the self-righteous garb of moral indignation. Here anti-Zionism is understood as an opposition not to the policies of the Jewish state but to the existence of the Jewish state. The chapter explains how notions of Holy Land and sacred history are tied to anti-Zionism, how anti-Zionism is tied to a contempt for Judaism, and what this has to do with the demonization and delegitimization of the Jewish state. Once again, we find that demonization introduces a metaphysical dimension that will not tolerate any compromise or half-measures. Like most manifestations of antisemitism, but one that has yet distinct from them in that it has become intellectually fashionable, anti-Zionism is cloaked in the self-righteous garb of moral indignation.
The issue of legality in relation to Palestine and Israel is controversial, not only from the standpoint of rights to territory, but in relation to whether legality is relevant at all. With most countries, no one bothers to ask if they are legal. They simply exist. Israel is different. It was formed under circumstances of the exodus of most of its population. That population clamors for return. It claims a right of self-determination that is not being respected. On Israel’s side, a right of self-determination is raised for its people. Backers of the legitimacy of Israel as a Jewish state look to the 1920s as a time when an international commitment was made to the Jewish people for a Jewish state. That view is opposed as a false portrayal of the history of the period.
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