13 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on 16 January 2010
Denis MacShane was a Labour front bencher, he is a liberal Roman Catholic and an indefatigable europhile. His critique of modern anti-Semitism is fiery and unsparing across the political spectrum. His main thesis is to expose the global momentum towards a demonisation of Jews in general and especially of Israel in particular. His own views of the Israeli government are plain, but he excoriates those who hide behind political critique, when their real agenda is hatred and destructive malice. He spares neither Islamists and their Muslim bed fellows, nor their left wing allies, the anti-Zionist churches, Catholic and Protestant, nor the right wing racists and neo-fascists, nor the 'moderate' Jew haters of Lib Dems and soft right. He briefly documents just how pervasive and active a phenomenon the problem has become in Europe, Japan, and South America.
Rather than this hatred being a peculiar diversion from mainstream activity, he argues its corrosive influence is poisoning global political discourse as a whole, and threatens the life and vision of global and international institutions like the UN. He also reveals how the mass media have generally facilitated or ignored this phenomenon rather than challenging it.
Although this reader differs from the author on many issues, and finds his faith in European and some global political institutions extraordinarily naive for such a seasoned politician, whilst sharing his enthusiasm and passion for cultural and scientific cross-European partnerships, I was deeply impressed and heartened by his courage and determination to tackle this thorny subject head on.
However his credulous confidence in the Palestinian desire for statehood and consequent resistance to settlement activity is also indicative of just how out of touch he remains with political realities on the ground on the Arab side. His diagnosis is helpful but flawed but his remedy as inept and impractical as the CFO's, and likely only to worsen the problem.
8 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 1 August 2009
The author admits that this is more of a polemic than an in depth study. Anti-semitism is a broad subject both historically and currently but Denis McShane makes his points succinctly. This is a useful overview of the anti semitism that is reinventing itself for the 21st century.This book is not heavy on solutions for the problem but rather illuminates the problem in the hope that the issues will be discussed further and openly, something which Mr McShane feels is not happening in the UK at present. This book is not just relevant to the UK however but would be of interest to anyone who wishes to learn more about global anti semitism.