Don’t be caught out by ‘the trick” An open letter to News Editors, journalists and Members of Parliament


In August 2002 former Israeli Minister of Education Shulamit Aloni was interviewed on the US radio and television program Democracy Now.

During the interview, she was asked:

Question: Often when there is dissent expressed in the United States against policies of the Israeli government, people here are called anti-Semitic. What is your response to that as an Israeli Jew?

Shulamit Aloni replied:

“Well, it’s a trick, we always use it. When from Europe somebody is criticizing Israel, then we bring up the Holocaust. When in this country people are criticizing Israel, then they are anti-Semitic. And the organization is strong, and has a lot of money, and the ties between Israel and the American Jewish establishment are very strong and they are strong in this country, as you know. And they have power, which is okay. They are talented people and they have power and money, and the media and other things, and their attitude is “Israel, my country right or wrong,” identification. And they are not ready to hear criticism. And it’s very easy to blame people who criticize certain acts of the Israeli government as anti-Semitic, and to bring up the Holocaust, and the suffering of the Jewish people, and that is to justify everything we do to the Palestinians.”

In New Zealand as with other Western countries “the trick” is used to silence criticism of Israel.

People such as newspaper editors, journalists and members of parliament are intensely pressured whenever they speak out against Israel’s brutal military occupation and apartheid policies towards Palestinians.

In New Zealand the pressure comes from groups like the Jewish Council, the Israel Institute, the Israel Parliamentary Friendship Group and the Israeli embassy. Pressure from “the trick” helps silence criticism and good people end up making excuses for Israel’s murderous policies by blaming the Palestinian victims.

It’s an appalling inversion of truth and justice that leaves the public confused and gives the green light for Israel to continue its ruthless attacks on Palestinians who resist the occupation and fight for self-determination.

Yes, there is genuine anti-Semitism in New Zealand and around the world and all of us must stand side by side with the Jewish community to fight it whenever it rears its ugly head.

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However, using one monstrous evil – the Nazi genocide of European Jews in the 1930s and 1940s – to look the other way or back off criticism of another evil is cowardly and inexcusable.

Don’t be caught out by “the trick”.



  1. This seems a little naive of John. Ever heard of the ploys other Arabs ascribe to Palestinians? Many Syrians claim Palestinians as their own, just displaced from the “homeland”. It’s called politics.

    • What are you saying? This is a post which covers what Shalamit Aloni said, and what is used by the zionists all around the world to try and shut up those who object to Israel’s continuing treatment of Palestinians. How is that naive?

    • Your inferred claim that Palestine was empty of Arabs until Syrians migrated there is specious.

      That Syria has ruled over Palestine in the past (as did the Ottomon empire later) is a historic territorial claim.

      Austria once ruled over Germany …

  2. The ‘battle’ is full on in American academic circles. Charges of ‘anti-Semitism’ , laid against those who dare to speak out, can ruin academic careers. It has a powerful chilling effect. In other words, ‘anti-Semitism’ is today’s ‘McCarthyism’

    Ironically maybe, many of the most informed, articulate and passion critics of the ongoing, decades long actually and getting worse , cruelty imposed upon Palestinians are Jewish. This is easy to founded by Phil Weiss, a Zionist until he went to the Israel with his eyes Jewish Voice for Peace
    Then there is Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions …and more

  3. Thank you John Minto for speaking the plain and simple truth on this. You are an inspiration to humanity.

  4. I’m happy for NZ to receive 500,000 Israelis, despite their racism, much like the Sith Africans. That Jews should be racist is disgusting. That they should be Israeli staunch is understandable. Our country, despite the last 40, has its basis in idealism. Any native rightist say different?

  5. Unpicking the name IM RIGHT, I’ve decided RIGHT doesn’t mean ‘correct’ for this contributer, RIGHT means ‘right wing’ or even ‘right eejut’. You love Israel – are you posturing? Trying to be provocative? ignoring Israeli treatment of Palestinians? Trying to impress Trump? NZ Jews who I know are not Zionists, they take positions like Shulamit Aloni. I support Debbie supporting John Minto, an honourable man.

  6. Love Israel and its people.
    Hate the Zionist trickster-oppressors that have hoodwinked the world to steal Palestine.

    • Well said. The people who the Holocaust killed have been survived by bloody oppressors of another defenseless people. Somehow I believe that those Jews who fought to the death in the Warsaw ghetto would throw their sympathies behind today’s Gaza residents.

      Shame on Isreal. Shame on those Jews who conflate opposition to Isreali action in Gaza as antisemitism. And extreme disdain to those useful fools who swallow these anti-Semitic accusations and smears.

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