Whenever Israel defends itself against the rocket barrage from Hamas-ruled Gaza, anti-Israel activists are quick to organize protests. While these activists usually like to pose as “progressives,” their recent demonstration in New York City once again illustrated how meaningless this label is.
The protest was apparently organized by Al-Awda New York (NY), a radical group that can only bring itself to refer to Israel in quotation marks and that has occasionally openly promoted terrorist groups like Hamas and Hezbollah. Al-Awda NY advocates “Palestinian refugees’ right to return home to all of their lands and properties stolen since 1948” and their program of eliminating Israel as a Jewish state is reflected in their favorite slogan “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” Naturally, posters with this slogan were also displayed at the recent New York demonstration. A report on the anti-Israel site Just Foreign Policy claims that thousands took part in the protest, though the pictures posted there seem to show a much more modest crowd. However, there were obviously plenty of antisemitic posters accusing Israel of “genocide,” and one of the speakers bellowing into a microphone to fire up the protesters was Max Blumenthal. As with most of his public appearances, he emphasized that he was condemning Israel “as a Jew,” and as usual, he mocked the fact that his writings and activism have earned him the reputation of an antisemite. It’s worthwhile to watch the short clip of Blumenthal’s demagogic effort to fire up the crowd while recalling that he once advocated a “Juden raus”-policy for those Israeli Jews who would not want to submit to Arab domination in the “Free Palestine” that his fellow-protesters were demanding.