According to ‘critical race theory’, American Jews have been almost unknowingly pushed into the ‘white’ category, identified with the powerful and privileged majority. Israelis too. But the majority are no less brown than Palestinians, writes Brian Blum in the Jerusalem Post. (Blum’s argument should be taken a step further: If ‘white’ is a power construct, Arabs should be considered ‘white’, historically dominating the ‘dhimmi’ Jew). (With thanks: Michelle)
Israelis are now being castigated as “white.” And if Israeli Jews are white, then who are the people of color that these “white Jews” must be oppressing through their white supremacy? The Palestinians, of course.
Daniel Gordis, whose recent book Saving Israel: How the Jewish People Can Win a War that May Never End, refers to a letter penned by 93 American rabbinical students after Israel’s early summer operation in Gaza. They assert that American Jews are “part of a racial reckoning [that asks] ‘how are we complicit with racial violence’” in Israel and Palestine?
Gordis responds: “Whatever one wants to call what is happening in Israel, or what happens periodically with Hamas, it is not racial violence.” Rather, the desire to see Israel as a reflection of America’s unique history with racial injustice is a “wholly Ashkenazi take” which would be ironic if it weren’t so ignorant, since the majority of Israel’s Jews are not Ashkenazim but Mizrachim who would never consider themselves “white.”
Jews who hail from the Middle East, who were expelled from the countries in which they had lived for centuries and whose appearance is often indistinguishable from other non-Jews in the region, are not, as Tablet’s Liel Leibovitz calls, “white passing” or “functionally white.”
This website is dedicated to preserving the memory of the near-extinct Jewish communities, of the Middle East and North Africa, documenting the stories of the Jewish refugees and their current struggle for recognition and restitution.
Point of No Return
Jewish Refugees from Arab and Muslim Countries
One-stop blog on the Middle East's forgotten Jewish refugees - updated daily.