This entry in the growing list of anti-Semite-friendly statements by mainline Protestants comes to us in the form of a letter to the editor of the New York Times. In it, Yale University Episcopal chaplain Bruce Shipman declares that Jews in Europe who are alarmed by growing violence against their community have no one to thank but their co-religionists in Israel for being so mean to the people who are trying to destroy that country:
Deborah E. Lipstadt makes far too little of the relationship between Israel’s policies in the West Bank and Gaza and growing anti-Semitism in Europe and beyond.
The trend to which she alludes parallels the carnage in Gaza over the last five years, not to mention the perpetually stalled peace talks and the continuing occupation of the West Bank.
As hope for a two-state solution fades and Palestinian casualties continue to mount, the best antidote to anti-Semitism would be for Israel’s patrons abroad to press the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for final-status resolution to the Palestinian question.
Lipstadt’s original article is here.
Daniel Bernstein of the Volokh Conspiracy, where I first saw this, responds:
Next on Rev. Shipman’s bucket list: blaming women who dress provocatively for rape, blaming blacks for racism because of high crime rates, and blaming gays for homophobia for being “flamboyant.”
The interesting thing about the anti-Semitic attacks in Europe is that they are not, by and large, being directed against Israeli citizens, or Israeli embassies, or Israeli businesses. They are being directed against German Jews, French Jews, British Jews, and so on. Why are their attackers choosing those targets? Because they don’t distinguish between Israelis and Jews at large. And the attackers are also quite explicit about their aims. Like the alien in Independence Day, when Israel or European Jews ask what they should do, their attackers say, “Die.”
It may or may not be Shipman’s intention, but his letter essentially says that Israel, and the world’s Jews, should give the anti-Semites what they want. That way they will get a few moments of peace before the savages find another excuse to demand the destruction of the object of their hate. Shipman and his ilk are enablers, if not supporters, of that hate.