This week’s report by the Institute for Jewish Policy Research into the link between anti-Zionism and antisemitism offers perhaps the least surprising conclusion ever written — that those who focus their activism on attacking Israel are more likely than not to be antisemitic.
But it is no less valuable a piece of work for that, because the report provides clear and objective evidence of the link between antisemitism and hostility towards Israel.
Take support for the inherently antisemitic Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement; BDS singles out the Jewish homeland for boycott. And, quelle surprise, the report finds that most BDS supporters also hold a series of antisemitic views.
This may all be obvious, but it is nonetheless useful to have academic research confirming the obvious.
As the representative body of our community, it is entirely appropriate that the Board of Deputies is subject to criticism.
But there have been few more ridiculous criticisms in recent years than the current attacks on the Board’s president, Marie van der Zyl, for arranging to meet a member of the Hungarian government later this month.
The idea that she should only meet people with whom the Board has no issue is risible.
It is entirely appropriate for Mrs van der Zyl to meet Hungary’s Deputy State Secretary in order to convey to him the deep concern — and anger –— over his government’s use of antisemitism as a political tool.
Just as it was important for the Board, the JLC and the CST to tell Jeremy Corbyn to his face the concerns of the Jewish community, so it is with Mr Szalay-Bobrovniczky.