#Antisemitism: J.K. Rowling calls out racist tweeters

"Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel. From the examples of antisemitic discourse in the IHRA's definition of antisemitism."

By
August 20, 2018 20:48
Author J.K. Rowling attends the premiere of "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" in Manhattan,

Author J.K. Rowling attends the premiere of "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" in Manhattan, New York, U.S., November 10, 2016. (photo credit: ANDREW KELLY / REUTERS)

 
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J.K. Rowling, multimillionaire Harry Potter author, activist and philanthropist, is well known for her clever, snappy anti-discrimination tweets and statements.

In a succession of tweets on Monday, Rowling called out several Twitter users expressing antisemitic accusations with the caption, "From the examples of antisemitic discourse in the IHRA’s definition of #antisemitism."

Rowling responded to a tweet attacking Netanyahu, the state of Israel and, by extension, the Jewish community following the criticism against British Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

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Corbyn recently became a focus of fire following reports of him having attended a conference with Hamas officials in 2012, endorsing BDS and laying a wreath on the grave of a terrorist involved in the Munich murders of Jewish sportsmen.

The original tweeter, whose name Rowling blacked out in her response, wrote, "The smoke has cleared on the battlefield, their leader Netanyahu has revealed himself in all his ugliness. It's Apartheid Israel, the killers of babies and children."

Rowling replied with, "‘Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel.’From the examples of antisemitic discourse in the IHRA’s definition of #antisemitism."

This followed two other tweets in the same line that Rowling published earlier on Monday.

A Twitter user wrote, "It's called freedom of speech which the zionism seems to want to gag," with the hashtag PCPEU - Pro Cobryn, Pro EU. Rowling replied, "When challenged, out comes the stock defense of the racist alt-right. #antisemitism"

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Another tweet, whose writer was again blacked out by Rowling to protect their anonymity, tweeted, "Time is ripe for Jewish MPs to openly declare where they stand on illegal settlements in Israel/Palestine and the treatment of Gaza residents."

To this Rowling replied, "accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to the alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the interests of their own nations. #antisemitism"


The world-acclaimed author of the Harry Potter series has taken a stance against antisemitism before.

In April of 2018, Rowling published a series of similar tweets similar, again fighting antisemitism and its prevalence in everyday society.
In May, Rowling tweeted a congratulatory post in honor of Netta Brazilai, the Israeli Eurovision winner, again resulting in hateful responses.

Rowling was one of the 150 British artists who signed a letter against the Boycott Divest Sanctions (BDS) movement in October of 2015, a move that earned her several threats and hate comments across social media.

However, Rowling did not declare full support of Israel. Expressing compassion for the suffering of Palestinians in Gaza, Rowling published a story through Twitlog drawing comparisons between her characters and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The story is in answer to the questions raised after her choice to sign the letter against BDS. In this instance, Harry is compared to a Palestinian child fighting against the hardships and evil around him.

"The Palestinian community has suffered untold injustice and brutality. I want to see the Israeli government held to account for that injustice and brutality. Boycotting Israel on every possible front has its allure. It satisfies the human urge to do something, anything, in the face of horrific human suffering."

Unlike Rowling's comparison, a Youtube video user Rachel Lester created a clip depicting Israeli struggles in the conflict through the eyes of Harry Potter and his friends, this time with the protagonists reflecting Israel. 



Rowling's political views are not limited to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and fighting antisemitism. She often expressed support of the Obama leadership, while heavily criticizing US President Donald Trump.

In a recent post against Trump, Rowling mocked his attack against "fake news".


J.K. Rowling is a prominent public figure ever since her meteoric success in writing the fantasy series Harry Potter. After achieving her fame and fortune, Rowling took part in several philanthropic quests. She established the Lumos foundation in aid of orphaned children, wrote complementary stories to the Harry Potters series in aid of Comic Relief and many more.

Rowling is far from a blind supporter of Israel, but to judge from her Twitter account, her spear is ready to spike any comment expressing discrimination or antisemitism, as a matter of humanitarian principle above any political viewpoint.

Earlier this week Rowling re-tweeted a post by David Hirsh, a British academic fighting against the academic boycott of Israel, saying, "A message to my fellow British citizens: When we say we're worried about antisemitism, we mean it. We're not pretending or politicking. We're not trying to get an advantage in the Israel/Palestine debate or about boycotts of Israel. We're not playing a rhetorical game."

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