Wednesday, 07 November 2018 14:07

BELGIUM – Opinion piece perpetuates blood libel narratives

A Belgian researcher has accused Israel of kidnapping and murdering Palestinian children for their organs, tapping into the centuries-old blood libel against Jews. This is Belgium's media monitoring highlight for October.

This article is part of the Media Monitoring Highlights of October, a monthly overview of the most significant results of our monitoring of traditional and new media in Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, and the United Kingdom.

 

dwm 1Date of publication: 30 August 2018 (but edited on 18 October 2018)

Media Outlet: De Wereld Morgen, the opinion website of De Morgen

Author: Robrecht Vanderbeeken

Link: https://goo.gl/k21C8Q

Headline: “Trade Union’s struggle for Palestinian rights”

Description of the antisemitic content: In this article on the role of trade unions for Palestinian human rights, a Belgian researcherat Ghent University accuses Israel of kidnapping and murdering Palestinian children for their organs. “Gaza has been starved and poisoned for more than 10 years by the land-, sea- and air-blockade, children are kidnapped and executed for their organs”, stated Robrecht Vanderbeeken. After complaints by the Forum der Joodse Organisation, in October, the editors agreed with the author to remove that sentence from the article and to publish a correction. The website now states that while Israel kidnaps and murders Palestinian children and uses organs belonging to Palestinians it kills, the article was wrong “to suggest causality between the kidnapping and murder of children by the Israeli occupation army and the removal of organs for transplants.”

Myth debunked: The statement “Gaza has been starved and poisoned for more than 10 years by the land-, sea- and air-blockade, children are kidnapped and executed for their organs”,  later deleted, perpetuated existing antisemitic narratives about “blood libel”. According to this false allegation, which dates back to the Middle Ages, Jews murder Christian children to use their blood for ritual purposes, especially for the Passover. Whenever a Christian child went missing, local Jews were often blamed and pogroms targeting Jews followed. Blood libels persist in modern times. For example, after a cinema in Kemerovo, Siberia, caught fire killing 64 people (41 of them children), Russian social media abounded with blood libels, accusing Jews for plotting the fire on the eve of Passover.

More to read:

The First Blood Libel Against the Jews

Return of the Blood Libel

 

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