Jewish Voice for Peace Statement on Greta Berlin and Allegations of Anti-Semitism
(October 7, 2012) In the last several days, Greta Berlin, of the Free Gaza Movement, has been accused of anti-semitism due to posting a twitter link to a video entitled, “Zionists Ran the Holocaust and the Concentration Camps.”
The tweet was first widely reported by the Jerusalem Post, citing sources including Gerald Steinberg of the NGO Monitor and Avi Meyer of the Jewish Agency, who are well-known for using accusations of anti-semitism as smears to silence legitimate criticism of Israeli actions.
Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) takes our mission statement, which includes a pledge to oppose anti-semitism, as well as anti-Arab racism and all forms of bigotry, with utmost seriousness. At the same time, we are well aware of the way that accusations of anti-semitism are often used to silence debate about Israel (see our blog, Muzzlewatch, which is largely dedicated to examining the intersection of these issues).
While we appreciate Greta Berlin’s statements in response to the furor, we unfortunately don’t think her responses adequately address our concern about circulating anti-semitic materials.
We have been endorsers of the Free Gaza Movement and are proud to have been associated with their non-violent efforts as part of the Palestinian solidarity movement. We do not believe that the Free Gaza Movement is anti-semitic and understand that Greta Berlin’s tweets were her own and not representative of Free Gaza. However, unless this matter can be further clarified, we are disassociating ourselves from sponsorship of Berlin’s current book tour in the U.S. or future endorsements of Free Gaza Movement actions.
We reiterate our commitment to ending the siege of Gaza and to building a movement based on truth, accountability, and respect for the human rights and dignity of all peoples. To that end, it is incumbent upon all of us to vehemently denounce all forms of bigotry.