Haaretz Published Gilad Atzmon's answer to Zionist zealot Ben Gidley
Neither right nor left, and anti-racist
In response to “U.K. leftists and anti-Semitism,” Haaretz, October 30
Last weekend Haaretz published an opinion piece by British Zionist Ben Gidley. Although his article labelled me a ‘racist,’ a ‘hate speaker’ and a ‘holocaust denier,’ Mr. Gildley failed to properly source a single accusation against me, citing opinions printed in extreme Zionist and Jewish outlets.
In fact, in my entire career I have never referred critically to Jews or anyone else as a race, biology or people. My work is anti-racist, it focuses entirely on culture, ideology and ID politics. I believe that these crucial factors must be subject to criticism.
In my work, I argue that if Israel defines itself as a Jewish State then we must ask ourselves; who are the Jews? What is Judaism? And what is Jewishness? We must examine the relationships among these three and grasp how they relate to Zionism, Israeli politics and policies.
My views on the Holocaust are based on ethics, philosophy and history. I maintain that if history is the attempt to narrate the past as we move along, it only becomes a meaningful intellectual adventure once we are free to revisit, rethink and revise the past. History is intrinsically a revisionist project and this applies to the Holocaust, the Nakba, slavery or any other event in the past. When history is treated as a stagnant recitation of acceptable tenets it is reduced to a religion that adheres to the primacy of one people’s suffering.
Some of the charges Mr. Gidely makes against my work are correct. It is true that my writings are circulated by some right-wing and conservative outlets and thinkers, although they are at least as popular within left-wing outlets and progressive circles. This is because my work offers a metaphysical and philosophical analysis and is not merely political. I defy Left/Right binaries. I provide a post-political discourse that is ethically and universally driven
Those who are interested in or concerned about my work are invited to watch ‘Gilad and All That Jazz.’ This 2011 documentary examines my ideas and interviews my most vocal opponents.