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News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

February 20, 2003

Going Dutch

The history and the changes in Dutch attitudes towards Jews and Israel discussed in Jewsweek
"The Palestinians have made their propaganda work for Dutch people. They are very good at using propaganda in a horrific way, showing atrocities, blood, and burials," says Rosa van der Wieken. "Until a few months ago Israel kept from doing this, showing the carnage of Palestinian terror. They found that it didn't work, people don't get the real feel of how brutal such onslaughts are otherwise."

Changing perceptions of Israel is not the only goal of CIDI. One of their main objectives has also been to fight anti-Semitism in Europe and the Netherlands, which has seen an upturn in recent years, putting a further strain on Israeli/Dutch ties.

"We don't argue with anti-Israel criticism; CIDI has no problems with that," says Hirschfeld. "If people say Ariel Sharon is a murderer, it is not anti-Semitic, but if people write about Adolf Sharon; that's anti-Semitism."

The Van der Wiekens feel that people in Holland are being misled by what they see on the news and in the print media. A new phenomenon that both have had to tackle in recent years is the increasing numbers of Jews and non-Jews who insist on radical changes in Israel. What Israel's critics in Holland and abroad may be surprised to learn is how much the Van der Wiekens agree with them, and feel that Israel has made many mistakes. They do feel, however, that groups such as AJV go too far[more]