Australian group alleges TV series is anti-Semitic

The Executive Council of Australian Jewry files a complaint over "The Promise," which it calls anti-Semitic.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
January 10, 2012 19:12
1 minute read.
Promotional material for "The Promise."

British TV series The Promise art 311. (photo credit: Courtesy)

 
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An Australian Jewish umbrella group filed a complaint to an Australian broadcaster Tuesday over its role in producing "The Promise," a British television series the group says perpetuates anti-Semitic stereotypes.

In a letter to Australian broadcaster SBS, the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ) wrote that the series "promotes, endorses and reinforces demeaning stereotypes about Jews as a group," adding that all of of the main Jewish characters are portrayed negatively. "They are cast as variously cruel, violent, hateful, ruthless, unfeeling, amoral, treacherous, racist and/or hypocritical.”

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The four-part series portrays a British girl's exploration of her grandfather's role as an officer in British Mandatory Palestine.

According to the letter, the series is in violation of SBS's anti-prejudice code, which states that it "aims to ensure that programs either counter or do not promote, endorse, or reinforce inaccurate, demeaning or discriminatory stereotypes".

According to the ECAJ letter:

'The Promise' does not even pretend to address the deeper historical justification for Israel’s existence as the State of the Jewish people. Nor does it portray (let alone question) the decision of the Palestinian leadership and the Arab League to use force to prevent the implementation by the UN of its resolution in favour of partition in November 1947.

The series first premiered in the UK in February 2011, drawing the ire of local Jewish groups.

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