Andrew Silow-Carroll’s defense of Bernie Sanders is overly generous, to say the least (“Bernie Sanders speaks Zionism to Progressives,” Nov. 14).
Sanders writes in Jewish Currents: “Opposing antisemitism is a core value of progressivism. So it’s very troubling to me that we are also seeing accusations of antisemitism used as a cynical political weapon against progressives.” So accusing Ilhan Omar, Linda Sarsour, and their ilk of anti-Semitism is a cynical political weapon. And cynically, he embraces Omar as his surrogate on the campaign trail.
As a democratic socialist, has he criticized the Socialist Party of America for its support of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, defined as anti-Semitic by our Department of State? Or is that too cynical?
Sanders then equates Israel with Russia where “we see intolerant, authoritarian political leaders attacking the very foundations of democratic societies.” I guess he thinks Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also poisons his political opponents like Russia’s president Vladimir Putin.
But I am thankful that Sanders supports Jewish self-determination 71 years after its fulfillment with the founding of the Jewish state. Better late than never.
Max L Kleinman