Telegraph legitimises dual loyalty charge

Cross posted from UK Media Watch

There appears to be concerns voiced ‘by some’ that newly appointed US-Middle East peace envoy Avi Berkowitz is, like his predecessor Jason Greenblat, and White House advisor Jared Kushner, a “Zionist Jew”.

Unfortunately, we don’t know who exactly feels that, by virtue of his religious background and the fact that he supports Israel’s right to exist, Berkowitz can’t be trusted to faithfully carry out his diplomatic role, as Leila Molana-Allen, the reporter who penned the Telegraph article in question, didn’t say.

Here are the relevant paragraphs from the Sept. 6th piece:

The appointment [of Berkowitz] “demonstrates a lack of seriousness” in the administration’s approach to the peace plan and Mr Kushner’s complete dominance over the process, former Middle East advisor to the US defence department Jasmine El-Gamal told The Telegraph. “They are not even pretending otherwise by hiring a qualified person as an envoy.”

Others have raised concerns that Mr Berkowitz, like Mr Greenblatt before him and Mr Kushner, is a Zionist Jew, which may lead to a perception of bias in any peace negotiations with Palestinian officials.

Though The Telegraph is normally extremely responsible when it comes to avoiding language that could be seen as antisemitic, this particular sentence clearly serves to legitimise the historically toxic dual loyalty trope, codified as antisemitic by the IHRA Working Definition.

Here’s the wording from the IHRA definition:

“Accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to the alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the interests of their own nations.”

We’ve contacted Telegraph editors to complain.

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