This past June 25, a Jewish Zionist group participating in the LGBT Dyke March in Chicago, Ill. was asked to leave that parade. According to Laurel Grauer, the head of the ejected group (called "A Wider Bridge") was asked to leave since she carried a rainbow gay flag with the Star of David on it. The organizers of the parade found the flag offensive and accused Israel and its supporters of hiding behind LGBT rights.
To be sure, this is not the first time such an accusation has been brought to the table. Two American professors claimed that the Israeli government exploits the idea of Israel being LGBT-friendly to clean up its image (of "Pinkwashing") as a way to hide its oppression of Palestinians.
Such an absurd notion often became, a sort of common sense — a truth accepted without any criticism being offered.
Expanding the rights of women, gays, minorities, and others has moral components. It is precisely those moral dimensions which makes progressive groups so attractive to many segments of society. Such moral stature often makes them immune — even when entering the realm of immorality.
This reminds us of other examples in history. Soviet communism also survived its immoralities because the Soviet Union represented a moral ideal of equality for all, the rejection of poverty, the empowerment of the disenfranchised, and the redemption of victims of capitalism and economic injustice.
Thus, the Soviet Union killed countless numbers of those perceived as opposed to these enlightened ideals — whether such accusations were proven, or not.
Under Joseph Stalin’s rule, anti-Semitism became legitimized. Stalin executed Jewish doctors, writers, and poets in the early 1950’s in the USSR. These Jews, many of them loyal communists, were accused of being Zionists.
Stalin’s successor, Nikita Khrushchev, who denounced Stalin’s crimes, maintained the anti-Semitism of his predecessor. Khrushchev denigrated Judaism as parasitic and subversive.
Likewise, Jews were discriminated in employment. Holocaust commemorations were discouraged. After 1967, the Soviet communists also began to delegitimize Israel, spreading Jewish conspiracy theories. All this was happening in a country promising a sea of both happiness and equality.
Thus, the Soviet world in alliance with the Arabs began a world offensive against Israel, one culminating in resolutions like the 1975 U.N. resolution equating Zionism with racism.
It was the Soviet communists who introduced the comparison between Israel and the South-African Apartheid regime, as well as other demagogic slogans still carried today by pro-Palestinian groups straight into the LGBT, Black Lives Matter, or even in the feminist movement (where most recently an anti-Zionist activist, Linda Sarsour, declared feminism and Zionism incompatible).
The Soviet world collapsed on its own weight over 25 years ago. It was a regime claiming high morality yet oppressed the individual as well as the individual's creative energies.
Likewise, the Arab world is swimming today in a sea of civil wars and rebellions directed against oppressive regimes that scapegoated Israel, while killing well-more Arabs than Israel ever did, and subjugating large segments of their population to ruthless tyrannies.
This includes the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas, which ceaselessly murders suspected collaborators and other dissidents.
Curiously enough, Soviet communists and Arab regimes have also persecuted and denied rights to gays. Under Stalin gays were condemned to forced labor. Some communist intellectuals equated them with fascism indirectly inciting to murder. In the Arab world not only is homosexuality illegal, it is punishable by death in four countries in that region.
LGBT rights have evolved precisely in the U.S. and Western societies because freedom and democracy enables expansion of rights — and the proliferation of new groups and ideas.
Israel is also a liberal democracy in which rights of individuals expand accordingly. To call Israel’s liberal approach to homosexuality as "Pinkwashing" reflects the ignorance of many, and above all the hypocrisy of those who claim to represent higher moral ideas — as the communists did then and as some progressives do now.
If progressive movements do not begin to question the level of fairness in their ideology and attitudes, they are surely headed in the direction of total collapse.
It would be a good start for progressive groups to remove from their files all the demagogic anti-Semitic influences they have come to tolerate, even admire.
Luis Fleischman has worked as adviser for the Menges Hemispheric Security Project at the Center for Security Policy on issues related to Latin America. He is the author of "Latin America in the Post-Chavez Era: The Threat to U.S. Security." Fleischman is an adjunct professor of sociology and political science at Barry University. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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