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Oh Dvir! Now It’s Official

Dvir Abramovich was at it again.
Yet another piece about how Jews and the Holocaust don’t get the respect they deserve.
Yet more responses from puzzelled or angry non-Jews.
Yet another attempt by me to demonstrate to non-Jews that Jews who cry wolf regarding anti-Semitism are not representative of the community as a whole.
Even I’m bored…
Or I would [...]


Part Four – The Axis of Honour: Honour, Modernity, and al Qaeda

To read the previous posts in this series, click on the links below:
Part One: Introduction
Part Two: Honour, Communalism, and Islamist Suicide Terrorism
Part Three: Honour and Shame
Part Four: Honour, Modernity, and al Qaeda
The first three instalments of this series asked whether it was possible to find an ultimate cause for suicide terrorism, without falling back on [...]


Part Two – The Axis of Honour: Honour, Communalism, and Islamist Suicide Terrorism

Terrorism, Terrorists and Suicide Attacks: Our Representatives Fail to Shed much Light
The first post in this series took issue with the flaccid thinking of some academics and policy makers. They are, however, no worse that many non-academics (in the media and lobby groups) on the right.
Bren Carlill of AIJAC, recently wrote in The Australian, [...]


Tread Carefully, Dear Leaders: John Pilger Has Won The Sydney Peace Prize

Tread carefully, dear leaders.
Remember that you are unelected representatives of Australian Jewry.
Remember that according to an AJN poll, 95% of respondents felt you are not representative of us or our interests.
Remember that your lack of mandate does not diminish the damage you can cause us.
Remember the Hanan Ashrawi Peace Prize affair. It gave birth to [...]


Reader Response 7: Responding to our Non/Anti-Zionist Readers

The Sensible Jew has received two comments from two separate readers over the last 24 hours. These readers have in common a non- or anti-Zionist perspective. We think it is important that we address some of their questions/statements.
Reader, Gustavm, writes “You need to address “the elephant in the room” which you seem to want to [...]


The New Week: Ideas from SJ Readers 2 – Jewish Priorities, the Media, Jewish Schools, and our Leadership

This entry is part 1 of 2 in the series Ideas from SJ Readers

While we strongly agree with Yoram on this, we do not agree with his extrapolation that we should not focus too much on the media, or get caught up in its “glamour.” Yoram believes that we are not in any danger of an imminent “pogrom,” and with this we would also agree.

…That does not mean that relations between our community and the Muslim community have not deteriorated considerably. There are many unpleasant actions and events that can take place before large scale violence occurs. It’s also important to remember that communal violence of any stripe never erupts without a long lead-up of perceived insults to honour. One of the hopes of The Sensible Jew is to catch the destructive tendencies of our leadership before any lasting and long term damage is done. Indeed, danger is not imminent, so we are blessed in that we have this opportunity, during a time of peaceful relations with other communities, to build networks and on-the-ground relationships that will prevent a slide into inter-communal animus.


AJN 2: Colin Rubinstein vs David Langsam

This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series In the Australian Jewish News

Dr. Rubenstin, after years of faithful service at AIJAC, claims that his organisation was somehow bamboozled into making utterly self-defeating and inflammatory comments to the Australian media that transformed a silly 8 minute play into national news and enabled a partisan beat-up over a ridiculous Kennett painting.


Reader Response 4: Coups, Town Halls, and the Reluctance to Comment

It would seem prudent to gather some momentum, and to get a feel for the common ground shared by all Jewish moderates before storming Beit Weizman.

While the last sentence is somewhat tongue in cheek, it does allude to an idea that emerged at The Sensible Jew: what do people think of an open meeting, to which all Melbourne Jews are welcome, in which we could ask the leaders of the ZFA, ECAJ, AIJAC, and other bodies some questions regarding their recent media performance, and their claims to legitimate representation?

Would such a meeting do any good? Is it at all worthwhile? Are our institutions so rotten that attempting to graft democratic elements onto them would be futile? If so, by what mechanisms could an alternative leadership be established?


Reader Response 3: Media and Anti-Semitism

This entry is part 2 of 3 in the series reader response

Firstly, the observation has been made on more than one occasion that there are genuine anti-Semites (some of whom are Jewish) active in the media. The Sensible Jew believes that this point is moot. Apart from the impossibility of determining exactly which journalists and editors are indeed anti-Semitic, we must acknowledge that certain people with various ideological agendas will always abuse their positions in the media. Such people cannot be “rooted out.”


So What Do We Do? Jews and the Media

It often seems that we’re in an impossible bind. As commenters, Blistering, Paroggan, and Frochel have asked, how does our community deal with a media that is (The Australian excluded) either hostile or indifferent to us? How do we best approach matters such as the 8 minute play, and other issues rife with propagandising on both sides? We’ll begin with some of our ideas for change, but this is by no means an exhaustive list and we ask our readers to contribute their ideas.