Jews should not blame themselves for the hostility shown by others toward them and the Jewish state, nor should they delude themselves that it is something they can influence or control, argues the psychiatrist Kenneth Levin in this must-read interview with Front page magazine. Moreover, Arab Jew-hatred should be seen in the context of the victimisation of all non-Arab and non-Muslim minorities of the region.
“It serves Jews badly to think of their own plight as unique and not to recognize other victims. Certainly, Jews have been more than sensitive to the victimization of others, including those subjected to the extremity of genocidal assault; yet there remain areas of myopia in drawing political conclusions from assaults on others.
“For example, many Jews are aware of the intense Jew-hatred that has for decades been promoted in media, mosques and schools throughout the Arab world. But a general assumption is that it has all been due to the conflict with Israel and will be resolved by a” land for peace” agreement, particularly between the Israelis and Palestinians. Perhaps once again Jews’ reluctance to see their predicament in the context of larger forces reflects a wish to view themselves as more in control of their predicament than they actually are. But there is a larger pattern. For in reality virtually all the minorities living amid the Arab nations have been under siege, with a number suffering much worse depredations than the Jews of Israel.
“Christian communities are almost everywhere under intense pressure.
“The most horrific assault on Christians in the Arab world has been the decades-long campaign of enslavement, rape and murder waged against the Christian blacks of the southern
“But even the longstanding denigration of and attacks upon Jews and Christians do not fully encompass the victimization of minorities by the Arab Muslim nations of the Middle East and North Africa; in addition to the assaults on non-Muslims, there is a targeting of those who may be fellow Muslims but are also non-Arabs.
“This chronic pattern of Arab intolerance and aggression on both religious and ethnic levels has implications for the Jews. It is noteworthy, for example, that none of the populations that have been subjected to murderous, at times genocidal, assault –– not the Kurds, for example, nor the Algerian Berbers, nor the Christian blacks of southern