King's Evangelical Divinity School

23 March 2010

British versus European Anti-Semitism

At last! The book's in with the publishers and I am free again (well nearly... I have a rather large mountain of work on my desk to clear). Time at last to get into blogging again as the week progresses.

In the meantime, I've been reading a comment in the Daily Telegraph by Charles Moore concerning the remergence of anti-Semitism in Britain. Moore makes the observation that in Europe anti-Semitism has traditionally been fuelled by fear, while in Britain it is motivated by contempt. I'm not sure the extent to which that is true any longer. For example, the rise of Muslim anti-Semitism in cities such as Malmo, Sweden, is driven by hate as anything (or perhaps it is fear-driven, not so much fear of Jews as of extreme Islam, so that anti-Semitism remains unchallenged). But I think I do agree with Charles Moore that in Britain anti-Semitism is driven by contempt. You only need to read through some of the many comments posted on the Daily Telegraph website to see that indeed this is the case.


Anonymous said...

have you seen Stephen Sizer's blog lately? I assume it crosses into total anti-Semitism?

Colin said...

Dear Calvin,
hi again, sorry for my rushed message - I was in a state of shock. On March 9, in "inside ghetto Bethlehem", Stephen Sizer wrote "The immigration staff at Ben Gurion airport were not too impressed that I was staying in Bethlehem. I seem to remember one of their predecessors, Herod, wasn't too impressed either.", and today he has a picture piece "Herod's soldiers occupying Bethlehem today". It still makes me ill.
God bless,

Calvin L. Smith said...

To be honest, after the police shambles, scholars losing interest in what he says (or rather how he says it) and constant controversy (a device masking a lack of substance), I've lost interest. When you chat with a well-known scholar sharing some of his views who hoots with laughter upon learning he's declared millions of Christians heretics, observing he's set himself up as a one-man Church council, you realise some battles aren't worth fighting.

Andrew Sibley said...

Calvin - I guess I have a problem with labels generally, whether it be apartheid, or anti semitism because they do not help build understanding, but are used as political instruments to silence and misrepresent the other side. They are used to drive change through human pressure, not necessarily through an engagement with change through love, truth-seeking, prayer and grace.
Human psychology is complex - very often these labels have the opposite effects to that desired. A people labelled anti-semitic may rebel and grow to really become anti-semitic so I don't think Charles Moore's piece is really helpful. As Paul noted, the knowledge of sin gives sin power. The gospel of Christ is one of love, unity and forgivness for all people.