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Rupert Murdoch on Anti-Semitism and Israel

11:40 AM, Oct 14, 2010 • By DANIEL HALPER
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Rupert Murdoch last night delivered a speech to the Anti-Defamation League on anti-Semitism and Israel. The New York Sun provides a thoughtful editorial on the subject. And here's Murdoch's entire speech, as prepared for delivery:

Rupert Murdoch on Anti-Semitism and Israel

Thank you, Abe, for those kind words.  And thank you for this award.

I can’t say I have been chosen by God.  But tonight I can say this:  I am honored to be chosen by His people for this award.

I am especially proud that this award bears the name of the ADL.  You were founded a century ago against the backdrop of something we cannot imagine in America today:  the conviction and then lynching of an innocent Jew.

In the century since then, you have fought anti-Semitism wherever you have found it.  You have championed equal treatment for all races and creeds.  And you have held America to her founding promise.

So successful have you been, a few years ago some people were beginning to say, “maybe we don’t need an ADL anymore.”

That is a much harder argument to make these days.

Now, there’s not a single person in this room who needs a lecture on the evil of anti-Semitism.  My own perspective is simple:  We live in a world where there is an ongoing war against the Jews. 

For the first decades after Israel’s founding, this war was conventional in nature.  The goal was straightforward:  to use military force to overrun Israel.  Well before the Berlin Wall came down, that approach had clearly failed.

Then came phase two: terrorism.

Terrorists targeted Israelis both home and abroad – from the massacre of Israeli athletes at Munich to the second intifada.

The terrorists continue to target Jews across the world.  But they have not succeeded in bringing down the Israeli government – and they have not weakened Israeli resolve.

Now the war has entered a new phase.  This is the soft war that seeks to isolate Israel by delegitimizing it. The battleground is everywhere:  the media … multinational organizations … NGOs.

In this war, the aim is to make Israel a pariah.

The result is the curious situation we have today:  Israel becomes increasingly ostracized, while Iran – a nation that has made no secret of wishing Israel’s destruction – pursues nuclear weapons loudly, proudly, and without apparent fear of rebuke.   

For me, this ongoing war is a fairly obvious fact of life.

Every day, the citizens of the Jewish homeland defend themselves against armies of terrorists whose maps spell out the goal they have in mind: a Middle East without Israel.

In Europe, Jewish populations increasingly find themselves targeted by people who share that goal.

And in the United States, I fear that our foreign policy sometimes emboldens these extremists.

Tonight I’d like to speak about two things that worry me most. 

First is the disturbing new home that anti-Semitism has found in polite society – especially in Europe.

Second is how violence and extremism are encouraged when the world sees Israel’s greatest ally distancing herself from the Jewish state.

When Americans think of anti-Semitism, we tend to think of the vulgar caricatures and attacks of the first part of the 20th century. 

Today it seems that the most virulent strains come from the left.   Often this new anti-Semitism dresses itself up as legitimate disagreement with Israel. 

Back in 2002 the president of Harvard, Larry Summers, put it this way:

“Where anti-Semitism and views that are profoundly anti-Israeli have traditionally been the primary preserve of poorly educated right-wing populists, profoundly anti-Israel views are increasingly finding support in progressive intellectual communities.  Serious and thoughtful people are advocating and taking actions that are anti-Semitic in their effect if not their intent.”

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