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Why Do Europeans Hate Israel So Much?

by ranfuchs (writer), CT, USA, February 12, 2010

It's beyond comprehension why, despite all the problems Europe suffers at the moment, hating Israel is still so prevalent.

I have just returned from a couple of weeks in Europe – a continent in distress. The financial crisis is felt in every city in Europe, and may result in default on debt of some of the European countries. It may even lead to the collapse of the EU altogether. Iran’s plans to continue with its nuclear program will soon put Europe in the range of the Iranian nuclear warheads. The rise of extreme Islam in Europe threatens to change the face of Europe and the European culture forever. Many real problems that may threaten the European lifestyle, and yet anti-Israel sentiment is still prevalent.

My question is why? Why is anti-Israel sentiment high on the public agenda in a continent with so many urgent problems? Is Israel really such a risk to Europe, or alternatively, are Israel’s actions so horrific that Europe simply cannot ignore them for moral reasons, and put then high on the agenda, despite the more urgent problems?

Let’s look at some facts. Israel’s birth at 1948 was out of war. Like most other wars it’s controversial, and there are numerous viewpoints and interpretations of the events. Undoubtedly, both sides had their fair share of atrocities. Yet, no other birth of a nation has created such one-sided hatred.

Nowadays the existence of Israel is a fact. None of those who took part in the birth of the country is in a position of power any longer. Most of them are dead. So even those who feel that Israel birth was in sin must admit that most living Israelis had nothing to do with the birth of their country. Yet they are still a target of hatred.

There is no doubt that the Arab-Israeli conflict is ugly. There is no doubt that this has been a horrible war in which both sides have committed many atrocities. But there is also little doubt that either side is the sole responsible. The situation is rather hopeless, and nobody, absolutely nobody, has a solution. Yet, Israel is hated.

The Arab-Israeli conflict is far from being the bloodiest conflict in the world. It’s far from having the worse record of atrocities. Let’s, for example, look at some numbers (all taken from the Historical atlas of 20th century Matthew White):

The total death toll of the Israeli Arab conflict in over 100 years claimed about 60,000 people, out of which 7,000 Arabs were killed in the 40 years of occupation. It’s a horrible number indeed. However, in the same period 83 million people were killed as a result of tyranny and genocide. That is, Israel has been responsible for 0.07% of all such killings. Not so bad considering that the country has been in a war the entire period. Let’s compare it to other countries:

In China 40 million were killed under Mao
In Russia 20 million were killed under Stalin
Sudan conflict has consumed 225,000 lives
Somalia 400,000
Romania 150,000
Cambodia 225,000
Algeria 100,000 (fundamentalist Moslem insurrection only, not including the Algerian war)
Kurdistan 300,000
Liberia 150,000
Angola 550,000
Philippines 50,000

Not that these numbers justify the Arab-Israeli war, but one must wonder why the hatred in the European street is focused on Israel rather than on Algeria or Angola, for instance.

How come Israeli scholars are banned from many English academic conferences? Why don’t they ban Burmese, Sudanese or Chinese? And why, when any Muslim decides to detonate a bomb anywhere in the world, let it be London or Bali, calls against Israel are heard?

Is the very same attitude that led the English to blame the Polish when they were first occupied by Hitler? That is blaming the bombers may lead to more religious hatred, and more bombs, while blaming Israel is safe. After all, no bomb, suicide bomber, airplane hijacking by an Israeli has ever taken place?

Or maybe it’s just the same good old anti-semitism under disguise: “we don’t hate Jews any more; it’s Israel that we hate”?

More > Anti-Israel demonstrations in London



About the Writer

ranfuchs is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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19 comments on Why Do Europeans Hate Israel So Much?

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By alan handwerger on February 12, 2010 at 03:57 pm

Compleeing writing, its power reinforced by the fact of your reccent visit. Plus ca change, plus ca reste la meme.

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By Jack Bates on February 12, 2010 at 05:40 pm

A great question followed by fantastic "self dialogue" and hard facts. Isreal will be an issue for another 100 years or more, I just hope it becomes more civil as time goes on.

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By ranfuchs on February 13, 2010 at 04:46 am

Thanks HD. I am not going to discuss each individual item on your list, as I said, many atrocities have been committed by both sides. And while apartheid is part of Israel policy, Israelis would claim that they have no choice as many of the Muslims openly claim that it's the destruction of Israel they dream of.

So I am sure that the debate would continue. But my question is, from all conflicts in the world, from all unequal non democratic cultures why has it always been Israel that they choose to hate, and not other countries. After all there is very little mention to Sudan, Malaysia, Yemen. Before the Iraq war, no one cared about Iraq, all these countries have much worse human right record than Israel.

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By ranfuchs on February 13, 2010 at 12:13 pm

Just an example to show how irrational the hatred is, and how unrelated it is to the Israeli conflict:

Israel help to Haiti was praised as one of the best and most efficient humanitarian operations after the earthquake. Israel has no vested interest in Haiti, and could not gain anything at all from sending their help. Yet, in London there has been rumors that Israel operation took place to harvest the organs of the victims. This sentiment was expressed publicly by Baroness Jenny Tonge, a Liberal Democrat front bencher.

This is nothing but pure antisemitism. The same that led to so many massacres of Jewish throughout 2000 years of European history. It has nothing to do with Arabs, Palestinians or anything rational. It's hatred in the most basic sense of the word.

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By Marga on February 13, 2010 at 04:50 pm

Why does rockofliberty get away with his "You’re a moron!"

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By MUGISHO N.THEOPHILE on February 22, 2010 at 08:54 am

Hatred is something negative that often lead to violence and this is what is happening with these people. People should see in which way to settle their issues in a peaceful way.

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By The Gaming Gentleman on February 22, 2010 at 03:33 pm
Why do Europeans hate Israel so much? We don't. At least I don't and I'm European. British to be precise. I can't think of one single person who I know who has ever said anything bad or defamatory about Israel. Perhaps you went to the wrong part of Europe, come to the UK, we're quite chilled out. ROL: I don't know exactly what you mean by labelling an entire continent as secularist, liberalist socialists. Ever been here? We have FREEDOM of religion, just like you, FREEDOM of speech, just like you, FREEDOM of politics just like you. We have families and loved ones, just like you. We also have a chequered past and a history of war (just like you) and the EU has worked very hard over the past 65 years to ensure no such events re-occur. To excellent effect. The powers of Europe unite regularly for good, like the intervention in the former Yugoslavia. We really aren't that bad and labelling us in that way seems like a knee jerk reaction of someone filled with fear about a system they don't understand and haven’t taken the time to read about. Your friend from across the pond, TGG
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By ranfuchs on February 22, 2010 at 03:50 pm

When I mentioned Europe, I definitely did not mean all European, not even the majority of Europeans. I simply meant that it is prevalent enough to be encountered on a regular basis; much more than in America, or Australia, for instance.

So while Baroness Jenny Tonge (a Liberal Democrat front bencher) request to investigate Israel's humanitarian operation in Haiti as a commercial operation to harvest organs of the earthquake victims is a view of an individual, the boycotting of Israeli scholars by UK academic institutions is more general.

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By The Gaming Gentleman on February 22, 2010 at 04:14 pm
Ranfuchs, Do you think, perhaps, that the sweeping statements we all make on forums like this are often what form opinions like "they think this" or "We think that"? I wonder, if you were to poll Britain, how many people even took note of what a politician who is not even in government (The Liberal Democrats are our third Party, way behind Labour and the Conservatives - although they are gaining more support) said. I certainly didn't and I get a full dose of news from several sources every day, including international ones. As to the academic boycotts, I did read about that and I do think that it is ridiculous. That said, their (the academic union's) entire number is only a tiny fraction of the 60 million plus people who live in the UK, and in no way an indication of the mindset of the masses. Regards TGG
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By ranfuchs on February 22, 2010 at 04:26 pm

I completely agree with you, and I think that the big majority of people in Europe do not have any opinion about the situation.

All such statements (correctly or incorrectly) are based on individuals. When the percentage of individuals with a certain belief surpasses some threshold (pretty low normally, within the few percentage) the belief is being felt in the street.

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By Efroach on September 06, 2010 at 04:59 pm

HurricaneDean,

Where do you buy your history book, Ramallah??

Zionism is a nationalist[1] Jewish political movement that, in its broadest sense, calls for the self-determination of the Jewish people in a sovereign Jewish national homeland.[2] Since the establishment of the State of Israel, the Zionist movement continues primarily to support and advocate on behalf of the Jewish state, and its current existence.

Zionism does not have a uniform ideology, but a plethora of ideologies: General Zionism, National-Religious Zionism, Labor Zionism, Revisionist Zionism, Green Zionism, etc. However, Shimoni (1995) shows that there exists among the Zionist parties a common denominator: the claim to Eretz Israel as the national homeland of the Jews and as the legitimate focus for the Jewish national self-determination.

(Wikipedia).

Every jew that immigrated to Israel is a zionist. If my dear grandparents were not Zionists, they would have ended as ashe scattered around Auschwitz and would not have been born to type this message.

The 1948 war was launched against Israel by the surrounding arab countries who rejected the "partition plan" of the UN.While many arabs fled Israel out of fear, many of them were told by their leaders that their "exile" would be temporary until the Zionist Entity would be erased.

During all years of zionism, arabs lived in Israel, in their villages, cities etc. so you chill with your "wiping out" remarks.

About the organ harvesting non-sense, with the level of ignorance you have so far displayed, I am not surprised at all that you would consider the british Guardian as a reliable source on israeli matters. Was there also a reference to how we use christian babies blood to make matzos on Passover??

Human rights offenders, do me a favor...have you ever seen a suicide bombing up-close?? these people send 14 year old kids and young women to blow themselves up on civilians.

I am a zionist and a proud IDF officer in reserve. At least 80% of Israels Jewish population is zionist, how dare you compare with fundemental islamists.

I could go on and on, but I hope that you will at least get to read that.

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By maria s d on November 09, 2011 at 08:32 am

because u jews and israelis are dirty and hateful nations!!u steal US and defenitely Europians money and use it for killing people and attacking to other countries and then u say we are oppressed people!!!!ha ha,so much funny!!!if u werent exist,we never had many poor and jobless people in any side of europe!!!u dogs with your dog life style most get lost for our country!!!!!!!!!!!

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By Le Noir on March 27, 2012 at 07:26 am

Pro-Zionist Jews always end with Anti-Semitism, it gets old, and quit-frankly it is not the case, Anti-Zionism is not Anit-Semitism, however Zionism= Nazism. Europeans do not like Israel because is has caused nothing but troubles, c'est tout. Now In America, the people are wising-up and are tired of Israels dead weight. If Israel messes up again, It's on it's own, we will not fight for stupidity. Vive la liberté.

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By ranfuchs on March 29, 2012 at 10:31 pm

@maria SD, do you ever stop to think before you write, or it's unnecessary for you?

@Le Noir, mixing slogans does not necessarily make a point. So what are you trying to say?

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By Le Noir on April 17, 2012 at 05:53 am

Take the "slogans" out of the equation and there is your point, if you have difficulties deciphering that than I will make it clear that Europeans do not "hate" Israel, they simply no-longer support or are in-favor of militant, oppressive regimes that deny human being their civil rights, and that do not live up to the Queens Doctrine stating that they must also be fair to the native inhabitance of there newly "given" land. Israel had a chance to be peaceful and do good in the world and with its <!-- /* Font Definitions */ @font-face {font-family:Calibri; panose-1:2 15 5 2 2 2 4 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:swiss; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:-520092929 1073786111 9 0 415 0;} /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-unhide:no; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; margin-top:0in; margin-right:0in; margin-bottom:10.0pt; margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:Calibri; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} .MsoChpDefault {mso-style-type:export-only; mso-default-props:yes; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:Calibri; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} .MsoPapDefault {mso-style-type:export-only; margin-bottom:10.0pt; line-height:115%;} @page WordSection1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.0in 1.0in 1.0in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.WordSection1 {page:WordSection1;} --> neighbors, but it's government made the choice to go the other way. In all truth, Israel's clock is ticking, and they will be their own destruction.

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By Le Noir on April 17, 2012 at 05:59 am

I do not know what that middle section is, forgive my computer,

Take the "slogans" out of the equation and there is your point, if you have difficulties deciphering that than I will make it clear that Europeans do not "hate" Israel, they simply no-longer support or are in-favor of militant, oppressive regimes that deny human being their civil rights, and that do not live up to the Queens Doctrine stating that they must also be fair to the native inhabitance of there newly "given" land. Israel had a chance to be peaceful and do good in the world and with its neighbors, but its government made the choice to go the other way. In all truth, Israel's clock is ticking, and they will be their own destruction.

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By ranfuchs on April 18, 2012 at 09:13 pm

@Le Noir, there is a lot I can say, but I will restrict it to one question. When in the last 150 years Israel had a chance to be peaceful with its neighbors? Who gave it this chance?

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By ihateisrael on December 16, 2012 at 09:18 am

need more proof?

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By ranfuchs on December 16, 2012 at 10:12 am

Are you referring to the Syrian bombardment of the palestinian camps?

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