Anti-Semitism vs. Opposition to Zionism




Sunday, March 25, 2012 - 5:00pm to 7:00pm


500 W. Cermak, Room 701


Members of the Chicago chapter of the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network
In October, ABC7 featured a news report "focused on a major Jewish organization expressing concerns about the presence of anti-Semitic signs and some disturbing statements made at Occupy protest events in Chicago and elsewhere." We argue that this was, in fact, a disingenuous claim aimed at discrediting the Occupy/Decolonize movement and marginalizing the struggle for Palestinian self determination, as well distracting attention from the core demands for economic justice. Wielding charges of anti-Semitism has been a particularly common tactic used against leftist movements, particularly the Palestine Solidarity Movement--with the intention of silencing activists and isolating that liberation struggle from other struggles for liberation. 
At this workshop, we will spend a little bit of time explaining how anti-Semitism has functioned historically and its relationship to Zionism, racism and white supremacy. We will define anti-Jewish oppression/anti-Semitism and discuss how to differentiate between real anti-Jewish sentiment, and just criticism of the state of Israel or the ideology of Zionism. Within this conversation we will examine some instances when anti-Jewish sentiment/anti-Semitism has been privileged over all other forms of oppression/racism for political ends, as well as engage with the specific material consequences of different forms of oppression/racism including anti-Semitism and anti-Arab/anti-Muslim racism.
Finally, we will explore ways in which to recognize and confront the misuse of allegations of anti-semitism, as well as how to confront real anti-Jewish sentiment when it occurs.


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