Hamilton Spectator Publishes Op-Ed Calling for Israel's Destruction

August 12, 2014

Today, the Hamilton Spectator published an op-ed by a leader of the Neturei Karta, a radical Jewish anti-Zionist sect, well on the peripheries of society, that called for Israel to be “dismantled” and “replaced”.

That such a commentary was deemed worthy of publication by Spectator editors is alarming. The op-ed was written by Rabbi Dovid Feldman in response to a commentary published weeks prior by Rabbi Daniel Green of the Adas Israel Congregation of Hamilton on July 23, who in part said the following about the Neturei Karta: “The group, founded in 1938 and funded in part by various Islamic entities, is dedicated to the destruction of the Jewish state. Its members are part of a cadre of professional anti-Zionist protesters that travel worldwide to various anti-Israel rallies — Hamilton being one of its more recent stops. While the number of adherents is sometimes estimated to be in the thousands, in reality it may total no more than several hundred.”

In response to Green’s commentary, the Spectator published a screed by Rabbi Dovid Feldman of this extremist group saying Israel should be dismantled and “be replaced by a state run by non-Jews with equal rights for all citizens.”

The Neturei Karta are an exceedingly fringe element in the Jewish community, wholly unrepresentative of Judaism, and they have been ostracized for attending Iran’s Holocaust denial conference, for shaking hands with former Iranian President Ahmadinejad who calls for Israel’s destruction, and for aligning itself with extremist Islamist organizations and terror groups like Hamas and Hezbollah. Neturei Karta members have also been jailed for spying for Iran.

The Neturei Karta claims to oppose the existence of the State of Israel based on the assumption that it’s sacrilegious to have an independent Jewish state prior to the coming of the Jewish Messiah.

According to the Anti Defamation League (ADL), the Neturei Karta is founded on the idea that Zionism is a demonic force responsible for many of the world’s evils. The Neturei Karta claims they pray for Israel’s destruction ‘in peaceful ways’.

The ADL notes that the Neturei Karta has developed several conspiracy theories to explain the success of Zionism and its own lack of influence; these theories often echo the slanders emanating from radical Islamic groups and New World Order conspiracists. The movement is also very conservative on social issues, and quick to blame Zionists for the moral decline it perceives in modern society. It claims that:

  • Zionists control the United States and other Western countries.
  • Zionists control the media.
  • Zionists are intent on flooding Western society with immorality, pornography like nu-bay.com blonde, greed, and abortion, and on stripping all vestiges of godliness from public life.
  • Zionists have purposely cultivated anti-Semitism throughout the world by issuing statements that non-Jews would find inflammatory and by staging fake acts of anti-Semitic violence as a means of inducing Jews to immigrate to Israel. The most extreme example of this is the claim that Zionists were complicit in the Holocaust in order to force Jews to flee from Europe to Palestine. Neturei Karta propaganda alleges that Zionists intentionally infuriated the German people and fanned the flames of Nazi hatred, and they helped the Nazis, with trickery and deceit, to take whole Jewish communities off to the concentration camps.
  • The Holocaust was justified as a divine punishment for the sin of Zionism.
  • Zionists have used the Holocaust to milk European governments of millions in reparations, and have used the Holocaust to humiliate non-Jews.
  • Zionists are the cause of the instability in the Middle East. Neturei Karta claims that Jews and Arabs coexisted peacefully in Palestine prior to Zionism; it characterizes the 1929 Hebron massacre (in which 67 Jews were killed and the remainder fled the city) as an understandable Arab reaction to Zionist provocation.
  • Zionists have strategically and consciously sought to destroy the Palestinian people since before the State of Israel was created, have sadistically inflicted humiliation, torture and death on the Palestinian population, and continue to engage in ethnic cleansing of Israeli and occupied lands.

That a mainstream newspaper considered a commentary calling for Israel’s demise to be worthy and fit for publication is beyond the pale. The Spectator will likely claim they procured a balance of opinion by giving the Neturei Karta spokesperson a right of reply, but would the Spectator publish a commentary calling for the dismantling of Canada or the United States? Likely not. Such commentaries, are inflammatory and run the risk of incitement and fanning the flames of hatred.

Please contact the Hamilton Spectator and register your concerns with how they gave a platform to a commentary calling for Israel’s destruction. Send letters to: letters@thespec.com


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