Letter to an Anti-Zionist Friend explores the fact that European and American élites are being contaminated by a bias against Israel regardless of logic or historical fact. The narrative of the intelligentsia, burdened down with studies and statistics, promotes the idea that it would be better if the State of Israel never existed. That it ought not to exist and that it will be destroyed. Demolishing this intellectual perversion of ant Zionist hatred in five blistering chapters, Battista reveals anti-Zionism for what it really is: Anti-Semitism.
In general, opinion shapers in the media, academia and the world of cinema are fostering a public opinion based upon silent agreement; a climate that delegitimizes Israel's right to exist, libels it with the 'apartheid' slur and accuses it of war crimes. In the words of a previous French ambassador to London: "that shitty little country." This warped mindset indulges in the most outrageous double standards that absolve the worst dictators while denying Israel's right to life.
Battista shows how the United Nations and the European Union operate in a fever swamp of lies and deception. These and other multinational organizations protect the violators of human rights while ignoring human rights abuses in places like China, Chechnya and Sudan. Yet they criticize Israeli checkpoints that deter terrorist attacks by using pornographic adjectives like "Nazi".
Battista assails this mindset on two fronts, (a) by pointing out the correspondences between anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism and (b) by highlighting the maniacal obsession that Robert Wistrich calls the lethal obsession. Battista demonstrates so convincingly that this obsession is rooted in anti-Semitism.
But there's more to it, as the author explains. Israel is being judged by an ideological system that emerged during the Cold War, in which the poor are automatically "good" whilst westerners are automatically "evil colonialists." This system of judgment has a logical flaw at its core: the double standard. There are millions of displaced persons around the world whose plight is ignored. Just consider the Uighurs, Darfur, Tibet, Kirghizstan and the cruelty that characterized the so-called "Arab Spring."
Battista identifies the sources of the masked anti-Semitism by denouncing this double standard in a series of debates with prominent figures like Sergio Romano, Barbara Spinelli, Tom Segev and the late Edward Said. He makes it clear by analogy. Specific governments are criticized all the time but one seldom encounters blanket criticism of for example Italy or Sweden as a whole, whilst their right to exist is never questioned.
And this is the theme of Battista's work, presented in lucid arguments and with moral clarity: that the despicable questioning of Israel's right to exist derives from the mental virus of anti-Semitism. I also recommend the works of Robin Shepherd, Neill Lochery and Denis MacShane.Read more ›