The Israel lobby is First Amendment’s “principal enemy,” former senior diplomat warns
05/14/2024 // Belle Carter // Views

Amid pro-Palestinian demonstrations condemning Israel's genocidal acts in Gaza, the Antisemitism Awareness Act was passed in Congress. For former Ambassador of the United States to Saudi Arabia Chas W. Freeman Jr., the Israel lobby that pushed for the legislation is the "principal enemy" of the First Amendment.

The act passed in Congress by a vote of 320 in favor and 91 against. The bill would mandate that the Department of Education adopt the broad definition of antisemitism used by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), an intergovernmental group, to enforce anti-discrimination laws.

This would also strengthen the crackdown efforts on nationwide university protests. The proposal first defines antisemitism and then gives the Education Department the ability to suspend funding if it determines a school does not act against students who violate that definition. Once passed and rolled out, it will give the department new tools to threaten or punish schools that don’t take the department's definition of antisemitism seriously.

The bill is seen by Freeman as another attempt to suppress denouncement of Israel's genocidal attacks in Gaza.

"The principal enemies of the First Amendment in recent years have been… the Israel lobby," he said in a May 4 "Dialogue Works" interview. "Basically, they have tried to prohibit any speech opposed to the state of Israel."

He also pointed out that the redefinition of "antisemitism" conflates opposition to the mass killing and starvation of civilians with an irrational hatred of Jews. "Anti-Semitism is not the same as anti-Zionism and people who object to genocide or the conduct of that by a foreign government cannot be called antisemitic," he said.

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Meanwhile, The Hill opinion contributor Miko Zeldes-Roth pointed out that the act codifies a definition of antisemitism that is hostile to both Palestinian rights and Jewish safety.

"The bill adopts the IHRA definition of antisemitism, which has been criticized for 'conflating Judaism with Zionism in assuming that all Jews are Zionists,'" the writer said.

According to him, the new bill has been opposed by the American Civil Liberties Union, which rightly sees it as an attack on the constitutional freedom of speech. One would think that establishment American Jewish leaders, even if they do not agree with the demands of pro-Palestinian student protestors, would subordinate their support for Israel to their support for American democracy, especially in a time of rising authoritarianism. (Related: The First Amendment must be scrapped to "protect Israel," says ADL.)

Freeman: Israel is committing 'national suicide' by continuing war in Gaza

Apart from slamming how thought police suppress free speech in America, Freeman also contended that U.S. support for Israel is simply enabling the Middle Eastern country's self-destruction, as the state's actions continue doing irreparable harm to its international standing.

During his speech in front of the faction ruling Israel and its backers, he said, "I think Mr. Netanyahu, this group of people are committing national suicide. Without the support of the world including… the large number of Jews in North America and elsewhere, Israel can’t survive."

He also believes that Israel is beginning to fall apart as its economy is in tatters and its society is divided. He also thinks that its government is unprecedentedly unpopular and that its actions alienate the entire world. "It is becoming a true international pariah," he added.

The ex-ambassador also condemned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his intention to depopulate Gaza.

"He will do that however he can. Whether by driving Palestinians out of Gaza, by starving them to death or by bombing and shooting them – he doesn't care," Freeman asserted, adding that the Israeli leader "has spent his entire career trying to prevent Palestinian self-determination – that is his purpose now."

The political pressure on Netanyahu, coupled with the certainty of prosecution on leaving office, means he is "a political prisoner," according to Freeman. "The extremists who populate the cabinet would throw him out" if the Israeli prime minister tried to de-escalate the war. Freeman further mentioned the well-documented charges of fraud faced by the Israeli leader … and if he's thrown out, he will spend some time in jail for corruption."

Meanwhile, Freeman warned that if Israel continues to devastate Gaza, Israelis are going to find that when they announce they are Israelis, people are going to look at them as though they were Nazis.

"This six-pointed Star of David, a symbol of Jewish renewal in the state of Israel, is now looked on by much of the world the same way as Europeans look at the swastika. It's a symbol of genocide. That is not anything anybody should celebrate," he said. has more stories related to the ongoing conflict waged by Israel in the Middle East.

Watch the video below that talks about the backlash against the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act.

This video is from the Auriga Books channel on

More related stories:

In the name of "supporting Israel," U.S. is now being turned into anti-free speech tyrannical DICTATORSHIP.

U.S. senate working to CRIMINALIZE any criticism of Israel's genocide with ADL-backed law that will make it illegal to tell the truth.

COMING SOON: Stasi-like "antisemitism monitors" at U.S. college, university campuses, with the full support of supposed "free speech" conservatives.

Google fires dozens of pro-Palestinian employees who protested against company's cloud deal with Israel.

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