(photo credit: REUTERS)
Jewish-American playwright David Mamet took aim at the British in an interview
with the Financial Times published on Sunday, saying their society and culture
are deeply imbued with anti- Semitism.
Citing examples of Jewish
stereotypes in the works of authors George Elliot and Anthony Trollope, Mamet
said anti-Israeli sentiment in Britain today was directly influenced by negative
portrayals of Jews throughout the country’s history.
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“There is a profound
and ineradicable taint of anti- Semitism in the British,” he told the Financial
Times. “The paradigmatic Brit as far as the Middle East goes is [T.E.] Lawrence.
That’s just the fact. Even before the oil was there, you loved the
desert. It had all these wacky characters...
“But there is a Jewish state
there ratified by the United Nations and you want to give it away to some people
whose claim is rather dubious.”
The Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright,
famed for his masterpiece Glengarry Glen Ross and scripts for films such as Wag
the Dog and The Verdict, declined to name living British authors with an anti-
Semitic bent because of the UK’s “horrendous liable laws” but said there were
Earlier in the interview, he drew a historical parallel between
criticism of Israel today and that of Jews by fascist leaders and appeasers in
“The speeches that Charles Lindbergh made and Oswald Mosley
made in the 1930s are the same speeches that are being made today, only slightly
more politely: ‘The Jews are bringing us to war.
Perhaps we should give
their state away.’ “The liberals in my neighborhood wouldn’t give away Brentwood
[in Essex] to the Palestinians, but they want to give away Tel Aviv,” he
Mamet, once known for his liberal convictions, has shifted to the
right in recent years.
Earlier this month he released a book called The
Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture, which depicts his
political transformation into a conservative.
In the interview, Mamet
said he was an admirer of Republican Sarah Palin and opposed US President Barack
Obama on several grounds including his policies toward Israel.
question is, can he run on his record in 2012, and the answer is no, because
it’s abysmal,” Mamet said. “He took a trillion dollars and where it went, nobody
knows. He dismantled healthcare, he weakened America around the world, he sold
out the State of Israel. All he’s got to run on is being a Democrat and
indicting the other fellow.”