This summer in France has been marked by constant rows, with the introduction of anti-burkini edicts and fines for veiled women. Does France have a problem with Islam and Muslims? As Shlomo Sand, professor in contemporary history at the University of Tel-Aviv and author of The Invention of the Jewish People writes, ‘People used to say that patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel. Today, it’s laïcité’.
Edited by Sébastien Billard and originally published in L’Obs. Translated by David Broder.
At least 30 Israeli airstrikes took place over Gaza on Sunday 21st August in the latest Israeli military attacks, the worst since the 2014 war.
Before the July 2014 offensive when 2,100 Palestinians—mostly civilians—were killed, the last large-scale escalation was in November 2012, when the Israeli military bombarded the Gaza Strip with air strikes for eight days. Those strikes killed 171 Palestinians, including more than 100 civilians. In 2008-2009, Israeli soldiers launched a 22-day military operation in Gaza, dubbed Operation Cast Lead. About 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis were killed, according to Al Jazeera.
Reports of the Israeli air raids on northern Gaza began at around 10pm local time (7pm GMT). Photo: Al Jazeera
In light of these recent airstrikes, Verso presents a reading list of books that contextualise the political motivations behind these assaults and, more importantly, how Israel have been able to carry out such atrocities without reprisal. Here, we present a list of books from Israeli, Palestinian, and anti-imperialist authors, to explain the conflict and consider what the future might hold.
In recent months we’ve witnessed a cascade of articles and calls for help by all sorts of learned people on the liberal left crying out that fascism is threatening Israel. Some of them claim that it’s already here; others warn that it’s about to arrive
Shlomo Sand, professor of contemporary history and author of The Invention of the Jewish People, discusses how capitalism’s permanent state of crisis fuels a vehement pursuit of scapegoats. Sand examines the rhetoric supporting the development of Islamo-Leftism as the major enemy of mainstream culture, in comparison with the former, Judeo-Bolshevism. This piece was translated by David Broder and edited by Sébastien Billard.
“The onslaught on the Labour Party regarding Israel and Zionism is not innocent. It is a part of a deliberate defamation campaign against the left wing heading the party now.”
Shlomo Sand, historian and author of The Invention of the Land of Israel, The Invention of the Jewish People and How I Stopped Being A Jew comments on the allegations of anti-Semitism in the Labour party.