Strongly recommended. A particularly good read if you are concerned that people who criticize Israel or endorse BDS (the boycott, divestment, sanctions movement against Israel and/or the Israeli Occupation of the Palestinian Territories) are anti-Semitic (or, if Jewish, self-hating) or automatically support Hamas or Hezbollah.
It is untrue, absurd, and painful for anyone to argue that those who formulate a criticism of the State of Israel is anti- Semitic or, if Jewish, self- hating. Such charges seek to demonize the person who is articulating a critical point of view and so disqualify the viewpoint in advance. It is a silencing tactic: this person is unspeakable, and whatever they speak is to be dismissed in advance or twisted in such a way that it negates the validity of the act of speech. The charge refuses to consider the view, debate its validity, consider its forms of evidence, and derive a sound conclusion on the basis of listening to reason. The charge is not only an attack on persons who hold views that some find objectionable, but it is an attack on reasonable exchange, on the very possibility of listening and speaking in a context where one might actually consider what another has to say. When one set of Jews labels another set of Jews “anti- Semitic”, they are trying to monopolize the right to speak in the name of the Jews. So the allegation of anti- Semitism is actually a cover for an intra- Jewish quarrel.
In the United States, I have been alarmed by the number of Jews who, dismayed by Israeli politics, including the occupation, the practices of indefinite detention, the bombing of civilian populations in Gaza, seek to disavow their Jewishness. They make the mistake of thinking that the State of Israel represents Jewishness for our times, and that if one identifies as a Jew, one supports Israel and its actions. And yet, there have always been Jewish traditions that oppose state violence, that affirm multi- cultural co- habitation, and defend principles of equality, and this vital ethical tradition is forgotten or sidelined when any of us accept Israel as the basis of Jewish identification or values.