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If you want to understand why Obama thought he could treat Jews with such contempt, you have to remember that he thought Debbie Wasserman-Schultz was a normative figure and Schultz thought that Gilbert was a normative figure. In that echo chamber, a radical group like J-Street seems mainstream and Gilbert’s behavior seems equally mainstream.
Gilbert’s politics and contempt for the Jewish people make her completely unsuitable to act as any kind of liaison to the Jewish community. And yet Danielle Gilbert is not extraordinary. There are plenty of Jewish boys and girls in D.C. with the same privileged background, the same formal trips to Israel giving way uglier detours, foreign policy fellowships and eventually a place in a left-wing think tank or as congressional staffers. These are the people who show up to listen to J Street panels, break bread with members of the Muslim Brotherhood and denounce Israel. They are as banal as they are despicable.
In the last four years the Democratic Party has hardly bothered hiding its contempt for ordinary Americans. The same is true for the Jewish left which is hardly masking its contempt for the Jewish people anymore. This is not a new phenomenon, it dates back to the late 19th century, and the venom with which the Jewish left assailed the Jewish people eventually ended in the Gulags. Those who survived earned the privilege of participating in the Soviet Union’s campaign to smear Israel.
The post-Jewish left mirrors the Post-American left in its radical and destructive identity. Its promotion of a counter-Jewish identity based on ridiculing Jewishness and hostility to Israel is once again splitting the Jewish community into two camps. By elevating Schultz, Gilbert and J-Street, the left is asserting its power to define a destructive form of Jewish identity. The backlash to them is a reminder that the left does not have the power that it thinks it does.
Jewish Anti-Semitism is a very real phenomenon, but it’s not self-hatred, no more so than Bill Ayers’ desire to destroy America is self-hatred. The essence of the left is the rejection of the past in a perpetual war for a better future. The very nature of Jewish identity is built on a continuity of tradition and the nature of the left is to fly its progressive colors by showing contempt for tradition. There can be no balance between the two because to choose the one is to reject the other.
The more the Democratic Party moves in tune with the left, the more it mirrors the bigotry of European leftist parties toward Jews and Israel. This is an inescapable process and the further left the party goes, the more anti-Semitic it will become.
To join the left is to fragment your existing identity, whether it is Jewish or Christian, American or Australian, and adopt a new form of identity. The further the extreme, the greater the fragmentation becomes. Push harder and you go from Debbie Wasserman-Schultz to Peter Beinart to Gilad Atzmon. It’s a slippery slope greased with lies and self-deceptions that ends at the bottom of a charnel pit, a gulag, a death camp or a terrorist training camp.
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