Donations from readers like you allow us to do what we do. Please help us continue our work with a monthly or one-time donation.

Donate Today

Subscribe Today

Subscribe to receive daily or weekly MEMRI emails on the topics that most interest you.

Request a Clip

Media, government, and academia can request a MEMRI clip or other MEMRI research, or ask to consult with or interview a MEMRI expert.
Request Clip
Dec 08, 2018
Share Video:

French-Algerian Activist Houria Bouteldja: We Must Fight the Love of Jews ("Philo-Semitism") In Order to Fight Islamophobia

#6914 | 03:38
Source: Online Platforms - "IHRC on YouTube"

During a December 8 conference held by the London-based Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), French-Algerian political activist Houria Bouteldja delivered a talk titled "Fighting Philo-Semitism to Fight Islamophobia and Zionism." Bouteldja defined philo-Semitism as the love of Jews. She criticized France and Britain for being philo-Semitic, and said that philo-Semitism is a kind of state racism that is combined with Islamophobia to maintain the whiteness of nation-states. She elaborated the philo-Semitic nation-states give Jews a privileged position in society, and that it is part of an effort to organize a competition between Jews, Muslims, and blacks. She said that Muslims do not occupy the same place in the racial hierarchy as Jews, and that France allows its Jews to serve in the Israeli military because they are not viewed as real Frenchmen and because it serves Western interests. She concluded by saying: "The idea here is not to fight Islamophobia and anti-Semitism… [It] is to fight Islamophobia and philo-Semitism… [This will enable us] to be stronger against racism and… Zionism." The conference was streamed live on IHRC's YouTube channel. Houria Bouteldja was born in Algeria and is the spokesperson of France's Party of Indigenous People of the Republic (PIR). IHRC has had consultative status with the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs since 2007, and it has recently been participating in the launch of a counter-Islamophobia toolkit in the European Parliament and in the United Kingdom.

Following are excerpts:


Houria Bouteldja: The title of my talk is "Fighting Philo-Semitism to Fight Islamophobia and Zionism."




Philo-Semitism is included in Zionism.




The French state is philo-Semitic, and I'm sure the English one is philo-Semitic, too. I would like to add that we can't understand Islamophobia and state racism if we don't understand philo-Semitism.




They are both [forms of] state racism.




They work together to maintain the white nation-state, in which Jews are not included, but in which they have a specific role to play. Philo-Semitism, which is officially the love of Jews, is a historical compromise between the anti-Semitism that was spread all over Europe until 1945 and nation-states.




Philo-Semitism became the solution. The nation-state, which is a structural institution for imperialism, is saved, and the Jews have a privileged position among all the other racialized [sic] communities, while staying under the white community, which is the only one that is really legitimate in the nation-state.




We cannot understand the way racism functions if we don't understand that philo-Semitism is a modality of racism, and that it is a kind of brother of Islamophobia and negro-phobia. It is important for the state to organize a kind of competition between the Jews, the Muslims, and the blacks.




We, as the [Party of the] Indigenous of the Republic and as Muslims, do not occupy the same place in the racial hierarchy [as Jews]. It makes the common struggle more difficult. For example, the Jews in France are not discriminated [against] and they are not brutalized by the police. Another example is that a French Jew is allowed to do the army in the Israeli Army. This is seen as normal, but a post-colonial subject [is expected to] submit his loyalty to the French state. How is it possible for the French state to allow French Jews to belong to another army? I think there are two reasons. They are not seen as real Frenchmen, and to serve Israel is to serve the West.




To summarize, we have to criticize radical Islamophobia and philo-Semitism, which are the same faces of state racism.




The idea here is not to fight Islamophobia and anti-Semitism. The idea is to fight Islamophobia and philo-Semitism. From my point of view, [this will enable us] to be stronger against racism and to be stronger against Zionism. For me, it's the way we have to struggle to be very efficient.

Share this Clip:

Help Fight Extremism - Support MEMRI

MEMRI is a 501(c)3 organization. All donations are tax-deductible and kept strictly confidential.