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Daniel Jadue on Supremacism, Nazi Ideology and a ‘Chosen People’

Daniel Jadue, the mayor of the Recoleta district in Santiago, Chile. Photo: courtesy of Chilean Communist Party.

JNS.orgIf you thought the sordid row in 2017 over the contention that women who support Israel have no place in the feminist movement was a low point for the far left, you might perhaps want to reconsider that view.

Daniel Jadue is the mayor of the Recoleta district in the Chilean capital of Santiago. A product of Chile’s Palestinian community—numbering 300,000, they compose the largest Palestinian diaspora outside of the Middle East—he was the Chilean Communist Party’s candidate in the 2021 presidential election that was eventually won by another far-left contender with equally extreme anti-Zionist credentials, Gabriel Boric.

Last week, Jadue delivered a speech at an event in Santiago to launch a screed titled “Zionism: The Ideology of Extermination” by a writer named Pablo Jofré, who contributes to HispanTV, the Iranian regime’s Spanish-language broadcaster, and Russia Today, the official broadcaster of Vladimir Putin’s dictatorship. The title of Jofré’s offering is also revealing, in that it conjures unpleasant memories of the stream of books and pamphlets published at the height of the Soviet Union’s antisemitic campaign with such titles as Beware: Zionism!

Jadue’s target on the evening in question wasn’t Zionism or its followers, however. Eschewing the code words of the pro-Hamas left, he spoke unambiguously about Jews. “For me, it is a contradiction to be on the left and assume yourself Jewish, because being Jewish is part of a conception that has to do with a supremacist conception of being part of a chosen people,” he stated. “So if you are already part of a chosen people, you do not believe in the equality of all human beings before anything, right?” He then went on to add the observation, with regard to Zionism, that “we are dealing here with an ideology that is the most Nazi that I have seen in my life.” More Nazi, apparently, than the Nazis themselves.

The reaction to Jadue, at least from Chile’s small Jewish community of 16,000, was swift and harsh. Two veteran members of the Communist Party, both Jews, issued a wounded statement reminding him of the number of struggles and campaigns he had participated in alongside Jewish comrades. “The Communist Party of Chile is proud of having had in its ranks many people of Jewish origin who, in some cases, gave their lives for the noble cause they supported throughout their lives,” they said.

A separate statement signed by more than 200 Jewish leftists accused Jadue of displaying “manifest conceptual ignorance and intellectual poverty” in an attempt “to erase the historical contribution that Jews have made for centuries … in the fight for a more humane, just, and united world.” Asserting that their left-wing stances are anchored in Jewish values, the group also charged that Jadue was legitimizing the wave of antisemitism that has not spared Chile just as it hasn’t spared other countries.

Meanwhile, an opinion piece in the Chilean daily El Mostrador (titled “Comrade Daniel Jadue, Shalom!”) asserted that Jadue’s comments had regurgitated classic antisemitic tropes about Jews. “Jadue does not need to be reminded that there are left-wing Jews. What he seeks, as part of the more traditional antisemitic thinking, is to create a division between ‘good’ Jews and ‘bad’ Jews,” wrote the author of the piece, Professor Daniel Chernilo, who teaches in the government department of the Adolfo Ibáñez University in Santiago. “Both were present in medieval Christianity: while the good decided to convert to Catholicism—out of fear, conviction, or strategy—the latter stubbornly maintained their religious practices.”

Jadue has remained unrepentant, asserting that his invocation of Nazism was not a slight against left-wing Jews, only Zionist ideology as distorted and defamed by his friend Jofré! Anyone familiar with his record will know that this is hardly surprising. In 2020, the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) included him on its list of the top 10 antisemites of that year, citing his inflammatory statements against Chile’s Jewish leaders (“agents of Israel”) and provocative comments (“I get along very well with Jews; it’s Zionists I have a problem with”).

Actually, Jadue has a problem with Jews qua Jews, as his comments at the Santiago event made painfully clear. It should also be remembered that in 2021—when Jadue spent much of the year as the Chilean Communist Party’s frontrunning candidate for the presidency before being edged out by Boric—he was the subject of a parliamentary resolution that condemned him as an antisemite. The trigger was the emergence of Jadue’s high school yearbook, which contained an entry, written in a humorous and affectionate style by Jadue’s fellow students, noting his desire to “cleanse the city of Jews” and suggesting that a suitable gift would be “a Jew for him to use as target practice.”

Yet the problem is bigger than just Jadue himself. The aftermath of the Oct. 7 pogrom in southern Israel carried out by the rapists and murderers of Hamas has bolstered the dehumanization of Jews and Israelis on the far left, a process that was already underway across more than two decades. In this milieu, Jews are seen as “colonists” who have stolen the land of the indigenous Palestinians in the name of a racist, supremacist ideology. Victims of the Hamas atrocities, including the untold number of women who were raped, are dismissed as having fabricated their recollections of what happened. As Chernilo outlined in his opinion piece, more traditional antisemitic tropes are easily imported into such discourse, leaving its audience, and especially its uninitiated members, with the abiding belief that Jews are not so much a people as they are a destructive cabal. “The Jews are our misfortune!” the Nazis used to whine; that slogan now belongs to the far left.

Jadue’s words also tap into an older tradition of Communist antisemitism. Karl Marx, the founder of communism, famously argued in favor of Jewish emancipation on the grounds that this was the equivalent of the “emancipation of society from Judaism.” His argument was that the advent of capitalism had preserved the Jews in an economic role as moneylenders and bankers (“hucksters” was his phrase). Once socialism was installed, he maintained, there would be no need for a separate community identified as “Jews.”

We had, of course, hoped that such noxious ideas had been left behind in the 20th century. In the last three months, they have returned with a vengeance. Right now, Jadue may seem like an extreme example, but he can equally be regarded as an early adopter of an ideology combining antisemitism with a loathing of Zionism that is increasingly prevalent on a political left less and less concerned with being tarred as antisemitic.

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British Columbia’s Jewish community is outraged after MLA Selina Robinson is removed from cabinet over remarks about Israel

Leaders of the British Columbia Jewish community have reacted with dismay to the decision by David Eby, the province’s premier, to remove Selina Robinson from her position as minister of post-secondary education and future skills on Feb. 5 due to remarks she made the previous week during an online discussion. While speaking on a panel […]

The post British Columbia’s Jewish community is outraged after MLA Selina Robinson is removed from cabinet over remarks about Israel appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

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Gaza Border Residents Demand A Return Home, Four Months Into War

A damaged building lies in ruins, following an infiltration by Hamas terrorists who attacked Israel at a kibbutz in Kfar Aza, Israel, Nov. 8, 2023. Photo: REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein

Israelis from the Gaza Envelope are calling on the government to approve their return home, roughly four months since the war’s outbreak on October 7.

The head of the Scot Negev Regional Council, Tamir Idan, said outside the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, “We demand a clear statement from the Prime Minister and the Defense Minister that it is safe to return to the area. Until then we are not moving from here.”

The heads of the other regional councils in the Gaza area joined Idan outside the Prime Minister’s office, where they slept last night in protest.

The regional leaders say that members of the Gaza border towns should be allowed to return to the areas if they wish, rather than being forced to live in hotels. An internal plan is set to be presented to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant in the near future.

The heads claim it is safe to return home, and are demanding that the government sign off on such a statement so residents can do so. Their protest comes as the government extended the funds allocated for their stay at hotels until July.

Following the October 7 massacre by Hamas terrorists, when they stormed southern Israel, murdering over 1,200 and taking hostage more than 240, tens of thousands of Israelis from the area were uprooted from their homes and placed in hotels in the Jerusalem area, Eilat, the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea region. Since then, they have been living there full time, with makeshift schools set up for children and activities to keep everyone occupied. The move has also led local businesses to be completely shuttered.

Some Israelis have already moved back to their towns, which is technically allowed but under their own risk — rockets still fly near daily from Gaza and the IDF is operating within the Gaza Strip, which is minutes away from certain border towns.

The plan presented by the regional heads, they say, would mean that the towns are technically safe to return to, and therefore the risk falls under the government and the military.

This is as tens of thousands of Israelis from northern towns also remain out of their homes, with no current timeline for return due to the constant threat of Hezbollah missiles and the potential the war extends to the north.

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Australian Politician Says ‘Jewish Lobby’ Uses ‘Tentacles’ to ‘Influence Power’

Australian Greens MP Jenny Leong speaks at a Palestine Justice Movement event in Australia on Sunday, February 4, 2024. Source: Twitter/X

Video of a left-wing Australian politician discussing how “the Jewish lobby and the Zionist lobby” are using their “tentacles” to “influence power” went viral on Tuesday, sparking backlash from the Australian Jewish community.

Jenny Leong, an Australia Greens member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly, spoke on a panel for the Palestine Justice Movement in December to promote boycotting Israel.

“The Jewish lobby and the Zionist lobby are infiltrating into every single aspect of what is ethnic community groups,” Leong said during the panel. “They rock up and they’re part of the campaign,” and “they offer solidarity.” 

She continued: “They [the Jewish and Zionist lobby] rock up to every community meeting and event to offer that connection because their tentacles reach into the areas that try and influence power and I think that we need to call that out and expose that.”

Stop what you’re doing and listen to the despicable remarks of @Greens MP @jennyleong , in which she accuses Jews of having “tentacles” which they use to try and influence power.

Leong has plumbed new and dangerous depths by using one of the oldest and darkest antisemitic tropes…

— NSW Jewish Board of Deputies (@NSWJBD) February 6, 2024

The NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, which is the representative of Jews who live in New South Wales, called the remarks “despicable,” adding that “Leong has plumbed new and dangerous depths by using one of the oldest and darkest antisemitic tropes to accuse Jews of covertly manipulating civic life. She has outrageously suggested that there is a sinister or evil purpose associated with Jews undertaking the most normal of activities – interacting with other Australians.”

Josh Burns, a Labor member of the Australian House of Representatives, said her comments were “a direct attack on Jewish people in Australia” and that “she should unreservedly apologize.” He also called on the Australian Greens to “take responsibility and demonstrate that Jewish people in Australia are safe and respected by their Party.”

The right-leaning Australian Jewish Association wrote on X that “Every credible political party must put the Greens last. Every non-racist fair minded person must put the Greens last.”

In response to the criticism, Leong apologized for specifically using the word “tentacles,” but not for her message. She said: “Speaking on a panel during a two-hour-long event last year, I acknowledge that I used a word at one point that was an inappropriate descriptor for the influence of groups backing Netanyahu’s genocidal attacks in Gaza and the ongoing occupation – I apologise that this has caused offence.” 

She continued: “It is incredibly telling that after a conversation where myself and other speakers made countless mentions of the genocidal attacks and occupation occurring in Gaza right now, that two months later more focus isn’t being put on the deaths of over 26,000 people, many of them children.”

Her comments and apology come amid increasing concern over antisemitism on the far-left, which has celebrated violent resistance against Israel since October 7, when Hamas invaded the country, killed 1,200 people, and kidnapped more than 240 more.

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