(ynet, Washingtonjewishweek).Growing global anti-Semitism is linked to Israel’s policy towards the Palestinians, the American ambassador to Belgium told stunned Jewish conference attendants in Brussels earlier this week.
A distinction should be made between traditional anti-Semitism, which should be condemned and Muslim hatred for Jews, which stems from the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, Gutman said. He also argued that an Israeli-Palestinian peace treaty will significantly diminish Muslim anti-Semitism.
The American envoy, is Jewish and played a major role in fundraising for the Democratic Party. He was appointed to the post by President Barack Obama
The White House distanced itself from the American ambassador to Belgium following his declaration:
"We condemn anti-semitism in all its forms, and that there is never any justification for prejudice against the Jewish people or Israel," the White House said in a statement that was sent tonight to Jewish leaders and others. A copy of that statement was forwarded to this blog.
While the White House appears to be making it clear that it will not tolerate Ambassador Howard Gutman's seemingly anti-Semitic comments* chastisement of Israel, at least one source close to the Obama campaign implied that the administration must take concrete action.
"Anti-Semitism is anti-Semitism," said the source. But "if the Obama administration's rebuke of its Belgium ambassador is to be taken seriously, we expect greater action than a statement."