Not all Swedes are pleased with the Aftonbladet’s recent display of anti-Semitism under the guise of criticism of Israel. The Tundra Tabloids’ Swedish source for the recent information, Reinhard, says that the Swedish blogosphere, and some of the media, are busy justifiably raking the Aftonbladet over the coals for it role in proving that, as Barry Rubin puts it: “Antisemitism Is Anti-Zionism and Is Now Acceptable.”
The Swedish paper Svenska Dagbladet, in one of its own blogs, mentions a press release issued by the Swedish Embassy in Israel, that distances the government and the Swedish people from the offensive article published in the Aftonbladet:
Swedish Embassy in Israel has today sent out a press release that points out that Aftonbladet’s culture page does not speak for all Swedes. It is strange that the Swedish Government through the embassy marks its rejection and meddles in what a Swedish newspaper chooses to publish. In Sweden, as in Israel, there is freedom of expression. And given that Israel is a tolerant and open society it is difficult to imagine that the article would provoke the same type of reactions that Muhammed cartoon made in the Arab world, is why the press release is really quite unnecessary. But it is still worth reading.
On August 17 the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet published an article about alleged organ handling in Israel. “The article in the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet is as shocking and appalling to us Swedes, as it is to Israeli citizens. We share the dismay expressed by Israeli government representatives, media and the Israeli public. This Embassy cannot but clearly distance itself from it.
“Just as in Israel, freedom of the press prevails in Sweden,” concluded the statement. “However, freedom of the press and freedom of expression are freedoms which carry a certain responsibility. It falls on the editor-in-chief of any given newspaper.”
Elisabet Borsiin Bonnier, Ambassador
Other Swedish bloggers are working overtime to cover the story as well and offer their disgust:
Erik Svansbo, liberal politicial(Folkpartiet):http://blogg.svansbo.se/2009/08/18/aftonbladet-antisemitiska-myter/
Lennart Eriksson: http://www.sapereaude.se/blog/?p=4607
According to the TT’s main source, Reinhard, “Both the MSM and the blogosphere are out opposing this. Again, the liberal/right is taking the Left to task for its anti-Semitism. Also the Dagens Nyheter, the other Swedish daily: notes that Boström (Aftonbladet journalist) has previously attacked the Israeli army with the same accusations but has never been able to prove anything. He’s the editor of the peace book, Salam: On War, Peace and Islam (Arena, 2007). So the Swedish Muslim “peace movement” lets a dedicated anti-Semite edit its anthology about the Islamic message of peace.
Mats Skogkär, who wrote the piece in Sydsvenskan, wrote in 2005 that Boström’s previous allegations were based on what relatives of killed Palestinians had told him. He admitted this in a telephone conversation with Skogkär, and agreed that it was peculiar that the Palestinians didn’t show any interest in investigating further.”
- Stop the Presses: Blood Libel Goes Mainstream: Swedish Newspaper Proves Antisemitism Is Anti-Zionism Is Now Acceptable (Barry Rubin at the GLORIA Center)
[Rubin: “We are not talking about a Saudi newspaper or Hamas radio station but a Swedish newspaper. We are not talking about a neo-Nazi rag but a daily closely tied to the Swedish Social Democratic Party. And we are not just talking about an obscure item but an article that received top billing.
On August 18, Aftonbladet published an article by a man named Donald Boström. The editor responsible is named Åsa Linderborg. She is the newspaper’s cultural affairs’ editor.This was no random decision for her. When asked once: “What do you wish for most in life right now?” She answered: “What a simple question. What I want is a free Palestine.””]
The dubious idea in Aftonbladet Culture section the other day, where Donald Boström says that the Israeli Defense Forces, or parts thereof, murdering Palestinians to steal their organs, criticized strongly the Israeli press. Both the Haaretz and Jerusalem Post believes that Aftonbladet’s article reeks of anti-Semitism.
Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmer called the article “racist hysteria in the worst form.” Both Haaretz Jerusalem Post notes that while Sydsvenska Dagbladet Mats Skogkär, as laudably explaining what Boströms text actually says. Here the editors blog has SvD’s Johan Wennström written about it.
UPDATE: From the Tundra Tabloids’ comment box:
TINSC: In the interest of granting “equal time” we can now count on that Swedish newspaper to publish the “Danish Cartoons”. Right?
Henrik Clausen: I think it’s worth quoting the most famous anti-semite in Europe, for this:
“How, as a socialist, can you not be an anti-semite?”
Now, I have a notion that his anti-semitism actually came from a misunderstanding of banking, not comprehending how bankers (many of whom were Jewish) could grow rich without doing physical work. Identifying similarities with current leftwing extremists is an excercise left for the reader.
UPDATE: Write the Swedish embassy, let your voice be heard. Use the following template found here, courtesy of Ilya Meyer.