Yoni Leviatan
How to be Jewish: Be good. The end.

They hate you because you’re Jewish, you idiot!

“The pessimists went to America. The optimists went to Auschwitz.”

It’s a common saying that succinctly summarizes the European Jewish experience during World War II. That, along with the other one that goes “If you ever forget you’re Jewish, don’t worry, someone will remind you,” are indicative of the multi-millennial struggle that Jews have faced since the founding of the Jewish nation. It’s also indicative of the idiocy that overtakes some of the smartest people in the world when it comes to their perception of current events that will affect their livelihood or survival.

It goes without saying that we are not living in the same universe, let alone the same time period, as our recent ancestors were eighty years ago. However, the wisdom of these two statements should be heeded and internalized by every Jew on earth, whether you want to be one or not.

The easy logic that attributes today’s skyrocketing levels of worldwide anti-Semitism to Israeli policies in the West Bank and Gaza is beyond frustrating for those of us who can see further than a news cycle and care about the future of our people. While it’s usually the most ignorant of fools who would blame millions of peaceful Muslims for the atrocities of a few thousand of their satanical brethren, it’s usually the most intellectual of elites who rush to connect modern anti-Semitism to the creation of the State of Israel, and its bittersweet success in defending that state.

I understand why people make this connection. On the surface it has its merits as a reasoned argument for the latest aggravation of this perennial cancer that has never quite been in remission. It’s also a terribly simple and way too comfortable explanation for many Jews who prefer to live a life of “optimism” and don’t want to face reality.

But if ever there was a headline to say WAKE THE F*** UP, then it’s the news out of South Korea, which reads like it could’ve been taken from the German archives in 1933.

What appears to be another boring corporate argument about mergers, acquisitions and shareholder control, has turned into the quintessential anti-Semitic canard borne out of a few Jews with a lot of money and suspicions about their intentions. The details are not important, nor interesting in this respect, only the quote from a Korean journalist who portends the true reasoning for the economic battle taking place:

“Jews are known to wield enormous power on Wall Street and in global financial circles,” Kim began. “It is a well-known fact that the US government is swayed by Jewish capital.”

“The rationale for the assumption that ISS will be supportive of Elliott’s claims is that ISS, like Elliott, is founded upon Jewish money. Elliott’s CEO is Paul Singer, a Jew. ISS is an affiliate of MSCI, which is owned by Jewish major shareholders,” he wrote. And he added: “ISS’s opposition to the merger can be interpreted along the lines of Jewish alliance. Jewish money has long been known to be ruthless and merciless.”

Now if this came out of Europe or the Middle East then it would be just another Thursday, but this is the news out of South Korea.

South Korea.

No mention of Israel. No mention of settlements. No mention of Gaza. No mention of anything but Jews and their money, coming from a country that couldn’t be less interested in what happens to the Palestinians.

Does anyone really think this is an anomaly?

Do I really need to call you an idiot again?

We are not headed toward another Auschwitz. It is a fallacy that history repeats itself. The more accurate statement is that history reinvents itself, and most creatively when it comes to anti-Semitism. It’s a disease you think you’ve conquered, only to continually relapse with ever-increasing intensity.

This is the world we live in. People can continue blaming Israel till they’re blue in the face, but we’re doing pretty good over here in our blue and white, surrounded by one of the most advanced and best-trained armies in the world, who has only one mission in life: Protect the Jews.

We are barely at the beginning of this next ascension into madness, and it will happen at an incomprehensible pace thanks to the connected world we live in. No one was around in 1933 to tell the optimists they were wrong. No one could’ve dared imagine what lay ahead for six million Jews.

Don’t let the failure of imagination be your fate this time around. This has nothing to do with Israel.

They hate you because you’re Jewish.

About the Author
Yoni Leviatan is a British-born, American-raised, Israeli-blooded musician, content producer and writer. His songs have been licensed to MTV, CNN, ESPN, PBS and others while receiving nationwide airplay on over 200 American radio stations. His production work has led to projects with Warner Bros., Waves Audio, Abbey Road Studios, YouTube and Spotify. Originally from Coral Springs, Florida, he's been living in Tel Aviv since 2009 where he spends his free time writing about Israel and politics with articles featured in Newsweek, Times of Israel and The Forward.
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