The Israel Haters: Fonda, Glover, Klein, Byrne; Modern Liberals Gone Fashionably Mad (Link Update I)

Israeli Liberals Take Note: You are just as evil as the rest of us

You would think that a cross cultural exchange between Israeli artists & Canadians might be something to celebrate? Independent artists presenting their own independent thoughts & ideas through the medium of film to foreign audiences. It’s not exactly a bastion of the right, it’s not an ‘evil settler enterprise’ by any conventional stretch of the imagination.

If anything the stereotype would be the opposite, artists in general tend to be on the liberal fringes of societies. If you need proof of how marginal & fringe they often are you need look no further than Toronto Canada – Where OTHER artists have initiated a boycott of the Toronto Independent Film Festival because it *GASP* is featuring films about Tel Aviv (itself the liberal capitol of the Holy Land).

It is a striking look at how the left eats its own because ignorance &  hatreds know no bounds. No one is safe, it doesn’t matter what kind of Israeli you are or even what you believe – The mere fact that you are Israeli at all is enough. It’s called anti-Semitism.

Naomi Klein: Israel Basher Out in Front

It’s always seemingly today the leftist Jew out in front of the Israel hatred train. Whom else for the other Anti-Semites to shield themselves under? Of course this is not anti-Semitism per say, its only a boycott of ‘Israel the evil Jewish State’ so it falls into the much more fashionable Anti-Zionist label.

Klein herself is of course out in front. The anti free market anti-capitalist cheerleader, who is herself a granddaughter of ardent communists and routinely pens anti-Israel columns for such filth as the UK Guardian - Is a popular spokesperson for the Boycott Israel crowd. As a Canadian Israeli I’m frankly embarrassed by her, reading this below how can I not be? 

The ignorance, and smug sickness that infects the far left for all to see

An international group of more than 50 prominent filmmakers, writers, artists and academics – including Ken Loach, David Byrne, Naomi Klein, Alice Walker, Jane Fonda, Wallace Shawn and Danny Glover – has signed a letter protesting the Toronto International Film Festival’s decision to spotlight the city of Tel Aviv and the work of 10 Israeli filmmakers. The letter is to be published online Thursday, with a call for additional signatories.

“As members of the Canadian and international film, culture and media arts communities, we are deeply disturbed by [TIFF’s] decision to host a celebratory spotlight on Tel Aviv,” the letter begins. “We protest that TIFF, whether intentionally or not, has become complicit in the Israeli propaganda machine.” [...]

She’s in good company, all of whom now refer to Israel as an ‘Apartheid Regime’ - ‘Hanoi Jane’ Fonda, Danny Glover and 50 odd other ‘leading lights of society’ join in to the hate fest. Not everyone is impressed however. The Film Festival itself has put up a defense and rejected the boycott calls which are absurd.. But not before sucking some serious liberal lefty A** and stating that Tel-Aviv itself is “contested ground” -

* [...] We recognize that Tel Aviv is not a simple choice and that the city remains contested ground. We continue to learn more about the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. As a festival that values debate and the exchange of cultures, we will continue to screen the best films we can find from around the world. This is our contribution to expanding our audiences’ experience of this art form and the worlds it represents.

Hence I guess TIFF also chooses to de-legitimizing the entire State of Israel in one blow? And embraces the common Palestinian narrative that Israel should be destroyed in its entirety, much like the boycotters themselves maintain. But.. Only in the interest of political correctness and staying hip with the artsy fartsy crowd it seems. Perhaps the ignorant tend to hang out in packs. Instead of ‘constantly learning more about the boycott Israel & divestment campaign’ do yourself a favor & open a history book sometime Cameron, jeez.

Thankfully,  other Canadians are a bit more enlightened

Some have resorted to mockery by calling for a boycott boycott. The best part of this piece is right at the end where the author firmly tongue in cheek states..

Not that I have anything against these people; some of my best friends are artists.

A quite clever shot at the usual haters defense. I can’t possibly be an anti-Semite because some of my best friends are Jewish. Ha! Two points awarded. Here in Israel what can we possibly say? Other than to point out the fact that we are a democratic society with a substantial Arab citizen minority.

A minority who happen to enjoy the most rights & freedoms of any Muslim Arabs in the entire Middle East. What can we say other than the fact that our peace partners routinely indoctrinate their children to be suicide bombers & mass murderers? That despite the TIFF statements themselves, the United Nations recognized Israel & Tel Aviv itself as part of the Jewish State over 60 YEARS AGO! That the only place it is still ‘contested’ is in the small minds of Jew Haters? How can we rationally defend against irrational and frankly profoundly ignorant haters like Klein and her ilk?

We can start like this..

As the founder of the Wiesenthal Center Rabbi Marvin Hier stated:

“By calling into question the legitimacy of Tel Aviv, they are supporting a one-state solution, which means the destruction of the State of Israel. I applaud the organizers of the festival for celebrating on the 100th anniversary of Tel Aviv. If every city in the Middle East would be as culturally diverse, as open to freedom of expression as Tel Aviv is, then peace would long have come to the Middle East.” 

Indeed, but this is not about peace Rav Hier, it’s not about Palestinians, it’s about one thing only. Irrational hatred and anti-Semitism. Here’s a list of the Israel haters, a couple of them are typically deluded left wing Israelis themselves. Their mothers would be proud.

  • Ahmad Abdalla, Filmmaker, Egypt
  • Hany Abu-Assad, Filmmaker, Palestine
  • Mark Achbar, Filmmaker, Canada
  • Zackie Achmat, AIDS activist, South Africa
  • Ra’anan Alexandrowicz, Filmmaker, Jerusalem
  • Anthony Arnove, Publisher and Producer, USA
  • Ruba Atiyeh, Documentary Director, Lebanon
  • Joslyn Barnes, Writer and Producer, USA
  • John Berger, Author, France
  • Dionne Brand, Poet/Writer, Canada
  • Judith Butler, Professor, USA
  • David Byrne, Musician, USA
  • Guy Davidi Director, Israel
  • Na-iem Dollie, Journalist/Writer, South Africa
  • Igor Drljaca, Filmmaker, Canada
  • Eve Ensler, Playwright, Author, USA
  • Eyal Eithcowich, Director, Israel
  • Sophie Fiennes, Filmmaker, UK
  • Peter Fitting, Professor, Canada
  • Jane Fonda, Actor and Author, USA
  • Danny Glover, Filmmaker and Actor, USA
  • Noam Gonick, Director, Canada
  • Malcolm Guy, Filmmaker, Canada
  • Mike Hoolboom, Filmmaker, Canada
  • Annemarie Jacir, Filmmaker, Palestine
  • Fredric Jameson, Literary Critic, USA
  • Juliano Mer Khamis, Filmmaker, Jenin/Haifa
  • Bonnie Sherr Klein Filmmaker, Canada
  • Paul Laverty, Producer, UK
  • Min Sook Lee, Filmmaker, Canada
  • Paul Lee, Filmmaker, Canada
  • Yael Lerer, publisher, Tel Aviv
  • Jack Lewis, Filmmaker, South Africa
  • Ken Loach, Filmmaker, UK
  • Arab Lotfi, Filmmaker, Egypt/Lebanon
  • Kyo Maclear, Author, Toronto
  • Mahmood Mamdani, Professor, USA
  • Fatima Mawas, Filmmaker, Australia
  • Tessa McWatt, Author, Canada and UK
  • Cornelius Moore, Film Distributor, USA
  • Yousry Nasrallah, Director, Egypt
  • Rebecca O’Brien, Producer, UK
  • Pratibha Parmar, Producer/Director, UK
  • Jeremy Pikser, Screenwriter, USA
  • John Pilger, Filmmaker, UK
  • Shai Carmeli Pollak, Filmmaker, Israel
  • Ian Iqbal Rashid, Filmmaker, Canada
  • Judy Rebick, Professor, Canada
  • David Reeb, Artist, Tel Aviv
  • B. Ruby Rich, Critic and Professor, USA
  • Wallace Shawn, Playwright, Actor, USA
  • Eyal Sivan, Filmmaker and Scholar, Paris/London/Sderot
  • Elia Suleiman, Fimmlaker, Nazareth/Paris/New York
  • Eran Torbiner, Filmmaker, Israel
  • Alice Walker, Writer, USA
  • Thomas Waugh, Professor, Canada
  • Howard Zinn, Writer, USA
  • Slavoj Zizek, Professor, Slovenia

Big thanks to my friend Neil, himself a Canadian for forwarding this outrageous story & links. Incidentally, I only have one Talking Heads cd. But I threw it out a long time ago. Not because David Byrne is clearly an Israel hater. But because he’s a washout like the vast majority of these artists listed and I needed to make room for more useful things in my possession. If you want it, it’s at the bottom of some garbage dump in Montreal.


Link Update: Dershowitz blogs..

[...] Their petition, which is filled with misstatement of facts and rewriting of history, describes Israel as “an apartheid regime.”

It focuses not so much on Israel’s occupation of the West Bank since 1967, but rather on Israel’s very existence since 1948. It characterizes Tel Aviv, a city built by the sweat of Jews largely on barren coastal land, as illegitimate. [...]

Imagine how the hard Left would react if anyone tried to censor or boycott these writers and actors! They would cry “McCarthyism.” Yet McCarthyism from the hard left is as dangerous to liberty as McCarthyism from the hard right.

Double standards? Hypocrisy? Ignorance? On the Left? Nooooo. Can’t be.
* I edited and added the TIFF open letter statement for more clarity

  • John Clarke

    It is John Greyson who is politicizing TIFF and abusing it for his own political ends.

    I wonder if John Greyson’s big public hissy fit about TIFF has anything to do with him being on the Advisory Board of the Toronto Palestinian Film Festival and always pushing for a world-wide boycott of anything even remotely related to Israel?

    Knowing what TIFF’s plans were, one wonders why he waited to the last moment to withdraw, rather than just in the beginning many months ago withdrawing?

    As for Naomi Klein, her husband couldn’t find any jobs in journalism after being dumped by the CBC. Then he was hired by Al Jeezera and she upped her anti Israel rhetoric. She works very hard to keep her husband’s job for him!

  • @ John Clarke:
    Hey John, I have no doubt that what you posted is most probably correct. I am also glad to read lately that the festival is selling tickets well and most Canadians as you point out could probably care less about any boycott.

    I am concerned however how mainstream these radical type views, which are often based in ignorance of real facts or the situation are becoming. In Canada, the US & Europe. It is becoming in many circles fashionable on the left to hate Israel – Which means being an Anti-Semite is also becoming fashionable and that is very very troubling.. Thanks for your view & some solid points.

  • John Howard

    Deception and propaganda that is what Zionism hides behind and the truth of the matter is that Israel is built on foreign aid from the USA and lies.

    Free Palestine and end the inhumane occupation if you have any heart!

    • Mike Lamkin

      If you have any heart open a history book and look at the blood sweat and tears of the jewish people in Israel many years before 1948 building towns, infrastructure and providing jobs to Arabs coming into Israel from other Arab countries while still being attacked on a regular basis by Arab Marauders in the desert because they are Jews! We have been there for 3000 years and not going away! 

      • Mike Lamkin

        Not to mention that Israelis have done more for Palestinians than most Arab States. It’s the Arab states that are corrupting the peace process. The Israelis WANT to see a Palestinian state and live side by side.

  • Nancy G Ellison


  • Legend11

    You Israelis talk about your right to be there as if you were all direct descendants of the original ethnic Jews of the so called holy land… you’re not. You’re ‘right of return’ Jews from places like Russia, the Ukraine, South Africa, America and god knows where else. You have no right to be there… whatsoever. And even the few that could prove some original ethnic link… your ‘right’ to be there is based on the say so of some so called God and you have got it from a book written by uneducated goat herders from antiquity. It is madness. And it pleases me no end that your attempts to paint anti-zionists with the anti-Semite brush is proving futile. The world is waking up to your bullshit. I just wonder how many Palestinian kids have to die before the world finally stands up to be counted.