DON’T TAKE BIN LADEN CLAIMS AT FACE VALUE

The Jewish Chronicle - - Comment & Analysis -

David Klinghof­fer posits that athe­ism is a greater threat than Is­lamic an­tisemitism ( Mus­lim an­tisemitism is be­com­ing our fetish, Novem­ber 9). He then — shock­ingly — aligns him­self with bin Laden and the fa­ther of mil­i­tant Is­lam­i­cism, Sayyid Qutb, quot­ing bin Laden as ev­i­dence that the sep­a­ra­tion of state and re­li­gion was re­spon­si­ble for pro­vok­ing 9/11.

If bin Laden had in­stead blamed Jewish re­li­gious free­dom in the US as the provo­ca­tion for 9/11, would Klinghof­fer ad­vo­cate the clo­sure of US syn­a­gogues? Dan Sus­man Ospringe Road, NW5

It is hard to know where to be­gin to cas­ti­gate David Klinghof­fer’s ar­rant folly. His op­po­si­tion of “truth vs tribe” might hold wa­ter if, as a rule, peo­ple chose to be Jewish rather than be­ing born into it; if Jews num­bered in the hun­dreds of mil­lions and so Klinghof­fer, like Stalin and Mao, could blithely shrug off a few mil­lion dead; if our en­e­mies did not epit­o­mise them­selves by say­ing, “You love life, we love death”. But none of this is so.

Klinghof­fer is wrong to call the Mus­lims “our tra­di­tional tribal en­e­mies”. An­tisemitism is our only en­emy, whether it springs up in im­pe­rial Rome, Plan­ta­genet Eng­land, Re­con­quista Spain, Nazi Ger­many or the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood. To spin a twisted read­ing of Ju­daism that at­tempts to per­suade us that we have more in com­mon with mur­der­ing Is­lamists than neo-con­ser­va­tive philosemites who want only to fight along­side us is a mon­strous in­vi­ta­tion to com­mu­nal sui­cide. Richard Cooper St He­lens Road, Gosport PO12

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