The Huwara Riot Was No "Pogrom"

(Wall Street Journal) Gil Troy - The riots against Palestinians in Huwara by Israelis, enraged that a Palestinian terrorist murdered two Jewish brothers driving through there earlier that day, were appalling - but they weren't "pogroms." Invoking this false analogy, be it out of malice or mere ignorance, hijacks Jews' historical traumas to inflame an incendiary situation. The pogroms in Eastern Europe were state-sanctioned and rarely spontaneous. By contrast, pictures from Huwara showed Israeli soldiers saving Palestinians from the flames. Mainstream Israeli leaders condemned the violence. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said: "Don't take the law into your own hands." Pogroms came from the center of Eastern European society, while the anti-Palestinian violence came from the margins of Israeli society. Meanwhile, anti-Jewish violence comes from the Palestinian mainstream. Palestinian leaders openly call for the destruction of the Jewish state and sponsor "martyr's funds" to pay the families of those that carry out attacks against Israel. By contrast, the Hurawa riots outraged most Israelis. An Israeli politician raised $300,000 for Hurawa's victims overnight. No Cossacks ran post-pogrom charity drives for Jews. Words matter. Misappropriating words cruelly alleges that the once-innocent victims of bigotry have themselves become bullying bigots. Scavenging a people's past pain to weaponize it against them today is no way to work through conflict toward a healthy future. The writer is a distinguished scholar of North American history at McGill University.

2023-03-09 00:00:00

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