Should we all be racist now Father?

In Blog, Culture, Politicsby Fedayn26 Comments

Ireland & Israel/Palestine

If it wasn’t passed around as fact it would be laughable. The Jerusalem Post is carrying a story which furthers Ireland’s reputation as the world leader in anti-semitic hate. Yeah, and here was us thinking it was the Chinese that Ted wanted us to hate.

A bizarre attack on Caherciveen and Ireland by Sarah Honig (see here), a political analyst for many decades of the Jerusalem Post, begins by positing that no matter how many concessions Israelis make to their ‘physical safety’ in order to improve their image internationally (whatever that means) it is to no avail. Anti-Semitism, she implies, is at the heart of a flagging Euro-zone and is employed to keep us feeling better.

Her visit to the town that is dominated by an ‘imposing Catholic church’ is a nod to Daniel O’Connell – a man, she presumed, whose struggle to ’emancipate catholics’ would elicit sympathy in the locals towards a nation ‘far more ancient’ who similarly cast of the yoke of British Imperialism.

But no, as she walked through the town she was harassed by teenagers in santa hats who wanted money for Palestine. She tried to reason with them, asking who Palestine needed to be free from? ‘The Jews’, came the reply. She opined that the money would not go to plant olive trees but to terrorists, the reply ‘What do you have against Palestinians? What have they done to you? They are only against Jews. Jews are evil.’

Ms Honig claims to have continued to question ‘the boys’ but they were simply too poorly educated to reply to her more nuanced political interrogation, however she discovered they were part of a school outing to collect money for Palestine – for the terrorists don’t you know. She then challenged the teacher who simply nodded along to accusations while another youngster added that the ‘Jews crucified our Lord’.

Honig continues with a list of events that highlight Ireland’s anti-semitism from Limerick Pogroms to the modern day.

As part of the ongoing Hasbara (Propaganda) campaign that is central to Israel’s international politics, these kind of stories are weekly if not daily. Ireland is not singled out for charges of anti-semitism, we’re simply too small for all that bother, but when we are charged it is sustained and without recourse.

The central lie in this story is what Kevin Myers would call a blood libel no doubt. That by collecting for Trocaire at Christmas we are actually conditioning our children to be anti-semitic, racist or anything along those lines. It bears repeating. Collecting for Trocaire…and a nation stands accused.

Here is the reply on the school website from the Principal:


As PrincpaI of this school I was shocked when I read the contents of the blog by Ms Honig. The students and teacher vehemently deny the remarks attributed to them.

Part of our mission statement states that ‘we are committed to developing people who are fair, caring assertive…’and we are .

Colaiste na Sceilige has worked with the Trocaire Pamoja –together for human rights – Project for the last number of years.

Last year our students looked at Uganda and raised money for Trocaire for two mobile h.i.v. clinics by singing Christmas carols.The year before it was Honduras and they raised money for Trocaire to build a house for a family. This year it was Palestine  and they raised money for Trocaire to buy olive trees for displaced Palestinian families.

 The lesson content provided by Trocaire states clearly that ‘Trocaire is neither  pro Palestinian nor pro Israeli’and having spoken to the teacher and students it is clear that the material was delivered in an unbiased manner. Anything else would be entirely unacceptable.

Students read newspapers ,watch the news  and are in touch with the world around them.Ms Honig has referred to the plethora of anti Israeli  feeling in the media.

We try to teach our students to be critical thinkers to examine both sides of an issue . We may not always be satisfied with the conclusions students draw and can only try to set them right when they go wrong.

By making such  allegations, and indeed publishing photographs of children on a website without parental consent, the writer has been irresponsible and has done our school and the people of Kerry a great disservice.

John O’Connor

Coláiste na Sceilge


  1. Haven’t read her hasbara ! Post rebellion – civil war Ireland could not look after her own ! US refused to take WW2 refugees , don’t hear anything about that ! 1904 was a different era , Ireland was under British rule . People were struggling to survive ! The ethnic cleansing of 1885-1887 still fresh in their memory ( one million Irish were systematically starved to death ). Not one Irish Jew was killed or injured during the ( pogrom ) boycott of Jewish traders in Limerick or any where else in Ireland .

  2. Ireland does have an active Palestinian solidarity group. easy to dismiss it if all Irish people are anti Semitic. propaganda, that card is being played a bit to frequently of late for it not to be. on the one hand the IPSC should take it as a compliment that their efforts are trying to be neutralized other hand irish people are being slurred, some attempt should be made to counter it.

  3. Sarah Honig was too polite with Cathersiveen. I am a Jew who grew in an Irish overseas colony. Actually, this was an Irish section of a big city in the USA. The Indians didn’t invite you to live there. I remember that Irish kids used to throw stones at me in the public park. I used to have a street fight with an Irish kid every once in a while. They threw stones because I was a Jew, even if I was only a kid. They had special names for Jews. They didn’t need any excuse of Jewish/Israeli occupation to throw stones at me. I was a mockie, a Christkiller. There was no Jewish army in my city. But the police force was mostly Irish. And I had to take a lot of crap from cops. Remember that you learned a lot of your Judeophobia/Israelophobia from the Church. Now you’ve learned that some of the churchmen were pedophiles. It’s better to learn late than never.

    But I say the hell with your hypocrisy. Pog a ma hon.

    1. Wow, it sounds like you had a really tough time growing up. Have any rockets dropped on you? Even nice ones with a warning knock before them? Been gassed in the streets while under siege lately?

      Pogrom mo thoin.

  4. An Irish overseas colony you say? And i thought i knew a thing or two about history. So what you are saying is that you hate all Irish people because of your childhood experience? Have you ever been to Ireland, or cahirsiveen for that matter? I doubt it. As far as i know the “Native Americans” did not invite anyone to colonize their country. And it’s “Póg mo thóin”, you racist Paddy Hater!

  5. Dave, actually I had some Irish friends too. And some of the Irish could be good company in a bar or cafe. And when working in a certain Irish neighborhood I used to go to a bar across the street for a delicious Irish tuna hoagie. But I noted that hypocrisy was common among them, especially when lecturing Jews on morality.

    That brings me to a mystery or paradox. The Irish generally hate the British and probably for good reason. As for me, I consider the British silent partners in the Holocaust, silent partners of Hitler, although of course the British never explicitly admitted anything like that. The Brits helped in the Holocaust by forbidding Jewish refugees entry to the Jewish National Home [the Land of Israel] which was designated by the League of Nations [1922] for Jewish immigration and close settlement of Jews on the land [Article 6 of the Palestine Mandate] . The UK violated that international mandate, according to the finding of the Permanent Mandates Commission of the League through its 1939 White Paper. Again, the UK prevented Jewish refugees from finding refuge in their internationally designated national home when they most needed a home. In Israel’s War of Independence, 1947-1949, the British helped the Arabs with light and heavy weapons, gave the Arab forces strategic points and forts in the country, and even took part in battle against the Jews as in Jaffa [April-May 1948] and in the aerial battle over Sinai in early 1949. Ever since the British have usually been anti-Israel, although in diplomatic and propaganda forms.
    Yet most Irish seem to be on the same side as their old enemy, the British when it comes Israel. How so?
    So here is the mystery.

    1. I second the comments by Jack Schwarz. As an American, I have never seen a minority in the US more bigoted and prejudiced toward blacks, hispanics, asians or jews than the Irish minority.

      Many Irish in the US complain about the historic ill-treatment they suffered during the 19th century when arriving in huge numbers to our country. That histroy seems to blind them to how extremely bigoted Irish communities have been and stil are toward everyone else. They are even bigoted against protestants, let alone Jews.

      I have also lived in Ireland (Dublin) for a few years due to my job. I have never seen such shamelessly open racism and xenophobia hurled at everyone you could think of (Africans, East Euiropeans etc.), practically in any occasion and in any surrounding imaginable. It is beyond shameful, and it has made it truly difficult for me, as an American, view the Irish claims of historic discrimination in the US in the same light.

      As for anti-semitism, it is pervasive, systematic, extreme and ingrained in the culture of Ireland. It is usually coached in faux left-wing pro-Palestinian rhethoric, but that is only skin deep. Ireland has a very long history of profound anti-semitism and the current wave is only more of the same, even though it tries to masquerade as concern for Palestinian rights. Once you dig a bit deeper, the plain anti-semitic bigotry becomes obvious very fast — complete with conspiracy theories of Jewish dominance, with the promotion of nonsense about the Talmud and the whole propaganda kit which so many people in Ireland use to attack any person who is not anti-Jewish, without realizing that virtually all of their arguments originated in the state propaganda of Nazi Germany.

      Such a shame that so many Irish are consistent followers of Goebels.

      I will not publish my email address since I know what extreme abuse was received by others (including well-respected journalists or many nationalities) for daring to reveal something that every foreigner who ever lived in dublin knows: that Ireland is a cauldron of anti-semitism, racism and neo-fascism, a fact which ought to be
      an issue of major concern for any Irish citizen who cares about the fate of their country.

      1. I also lived and worked in Dublin for several years and I do not recognise your description of it. Maybe you lived there back in the 1970s or thereabouts, but when I lived there between 2002 -2005 I was living and working in a cosmopolitan city where nobody hurled racism and xenophobia at each other. I’ve seen racism in rural Ireland, (although even there only from a small minority), but Dublin is like any other European city – multicultural.

  6. Even Orthodox-Jews are opposed to Zionism, so are they anti-Semitic as well then?

  7. Julie. You state that:

    “I have never seen a minority in the US more bigoted and prejudiced toward blacks, hispanics, asians or jews than the Irish minority.”

    and also, with regard to Dublin, that:

    “I have never seen such shamelessly open racism and xenophobia hurled at everyone you could think of (Africans, East Euiropeans etc.),”

    Doesn’t that just imply that some people in Ireland are ignorant,obnoxious, narrow-minded individuals, across the board?

    It doesn’t support your subsequent allegation that people in Ireland are specifically anti-semitic. Or even “consistent followers of Goebels”.

    You said it yourself… “everyone you could think of (Africans, East Euiropeans etc.),”

    As regards racism, it’s out of order.

    As regards our solidarity with the Palestinians, it’s very simple.

    Lots of us don’t like to see bullies throwing their weight around, and getting away with it.

    That’s precisely what’s happening in Palestine right now.

    The death toll stands at:

    Over 1000 Palestinians dead, mostly cilivians, mostly refugees, and many of them children.

    43 Israeli soldiers dead. I fully acknowledge the deaths of several civilians within Israel as well.

    That’s a massacre.

    We don’t like seeing that, and we don’t like seeing people doing that with impunity.

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